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Old 03-07-2013, 12:40 PM   #1
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What do you think?

I bought a used 08 Silverado 1500 ext.cab,5.3 with a 3.73 rear end with a transmission cooler. 4 speed trans. How much trailer do you think I can tow with it? I also have a Equalizer 1,200/12,000 hitch. Thanks . I'm looking forward to your advice.
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:17 PM   #2
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According to the page at this link, you can tow between 6500 to 7800 pounds, depending on which bed's on your truck- a little more if yours is 4wd.
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:33 PM   #3
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Thanks Francesca. The trailer I have weighs dry 5100dry 7600 loaded. It looks like I'm ok.
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:42 PM   #4
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Time to go campin', then!
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Old 03-07-2013, 10:25 PM   #5
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Thanks Francesca. The trailer I have weighs dry 5100dry 7600 loaded. It looks like I'm ok.
Don't count on it. Those tow guides show only the tow rating, which is based on GCWR but ignores GVWR. On half-ton pickups, GCWR is rarely the limiter. GVWR is usually the limiter.

So to get a better estimate, load the truck with all the people, pets, tools and stuff that will usually be in it when towing. Go to a truckstop that has a truck scale and fill up with gas. Then weigh the wet and loaded truck. Subtract the weight of the wet and loaded truck from the GVWR and the answer is the max hitch weight you can haul without being overloaded. Divide that max hitch weight by 0.15 and the answer is the max GVWR of any travel trailer (TT) you want to buy to tow with that truck.

If your max available payload for hitch weight is less than 1,140 pounds, then that 7,600 pound trailer will probably overload the tow vehicle when the trailer is loaded for bear.
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Old 03-11-2013, 04:20 PM   #6
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If you follow the instructions exactly, this travel trailer weight calculator is accurate, and will safely match your truck to a trailer.
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Old 03-11-2013, 09:34 PM   #7
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With the 4sp and the 5.3 and even with the 3.73 and towing 7600lbs your going to struggle on anything with a hill. Speaking from experience with an F150 5.4 3.73 4sp towing 7300lbs. It wasn't fun. And the 5.4 has a little, not much but some more power than the 5.3. I moved up to a 10 F150 5.4 3.73 and other than a crappy tranny it was okay. The 4sp will be the killer. You will most likely be in 3rd 95% of the time and getting 8-8.5 mpg. Also with 7600lbs your tongue weight will be around 900-950lbs. If you don't know your trucks payload rating (should be a sticker on the door/glovebox) then a trip to the scales loaded up w/o the TT will tell you what you have left for the TT's tongue weight. Check your trucks GVW and subtract your loaded trucks weight from that. IMO you should look for a lighter TT. If you're only towing short distances a few times year then it won't be bad.
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Old 03-11-2013, 09:56 PM   #8
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My wife has a '06 1500 chevy 5.3 3.73 crew cab 4x4 and has a 7400 lb tow rating.
I use it pulling a flatdeck trailer to muddy worksites. The most I've pulled with this truck is 7460 lbs actual scaled weight on the trailers axles. The truck has a bit over 1000 lb on the ball. The truck has no problem carrying or stopping that weight... but..
The truck really struggles in the hills pulling that load .

I can drop some of the equipment and pull about 6000 lbs gross on the trailer with the same 1000 lbs hitch weight and the truck has no problems in the same hills at the same speeds.

Your '08 has a bit more hp/torque but I would stay under 6000 - 6500 lbs wet. I think you will be a happier camper towing in the big hills and mountains or especially 40-50 mph all day long headwinds in western KS. .
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Old 03-12-2013, 10:44 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the information. It was very helpful. I'm going to go to the weigh station as soon as the weather gets a little better. Can't wait to go camping.
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Old 04-06-2013, 07:23 PM   #10
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Well I got to the weigh station today. I loaded up the truck just as if I was going camping. The camper is still in storage. GVWR on truck is 6,800. Weight of truck was 6,060.So I was 740 lower than GVRW. Manual on truck says GCWR is 13,000. So it seems I got about 6,000 left for camper including tongue weight of 720lbs. Do you think I'm right?
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Old 04-06-2013, 10:32 PM   #11
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So it seems I got about 6,000 left for camper including tongue weight of 720lbs. Do you think I'm right?
720 pound max tongue weigh is a TT that grosses a max of 5,760 pounds if the trailer has the common hitch weight of 12.5% of gross trailer weight. Nowhere near your 7,600 pound trailer. Not even the 6,000 pounds you estimated.

And if your TT happens to have 15% hitch weight like mine does, then the max trailer weight you can tow without being overloaded is only 4,800 pounds.

Either way, your 7,600 pound TT is going to overload your tow vehicle.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:21 PM   #12
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I went to a cat scale last year, my first time there I was a little nervous. I only got truck and trailer weight. Truck - 6160, Trailer - 5080. Truck was not loaded for camping, the trailer had most some stuff in it. Next time going to have both loaded. I have one of those tongue scales, weighed one time with battery and propane, some stuff wood etc. in front storage, weight was 635Lbs. Last time at scales loaded truck only, Steer axle 3300, Drive axle 2760, Gross 6060. My truck specs. are front axle 3600, rear axle 3950, GVRW 6800lbs.My trailer specs are Dry hitch 600, Dry weight 5030, GVRW 7600. I don't plan on putting more than 200 or so more lbs. in camper for food and cloths. Thanks for your advise. You sure do seem to know a lot about towing.
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