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Old 11-02-2011, 07:19 PM   #1
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What kind of trailer can our Suburban pull?

Hi all,

currently have our vintage rig but with more and more things needing renovating plus buying a '99 Suburban our plans are changing.

Now that we have a tow vehicle possibly looking into the TT side of things. Regarding the Burb its a '99 K1500 with 5.7 vortec, don't know the back axle as yet, got a hitch will check specs in daylight.

As far as tow package etc I do know its got a tranny cooler on it as it's got a 2nd Rad in front of main one as for oil cooler don't know.

What sort of size/length/weight of TT could we be looking at getting /being able to pull with the Burb?

Thanks in advance for any info ;-)

Nothing set in stone as yet but pretty sure we won't have the bounder for much longer, so either a newer coach or with getting the Burb the TT is looking very promising.
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Old 11-02-2011, 07:34 PM   #2
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The second rad in front of the radiator is probably the A/C condenser. You need to get the Chevy dealer to run the VIN and he can tell you what accessories it has as well as the axle ration.

Look on the drivers door jamb and get the GVWR...gross vehicle weight rating whis is the most the truck and weigh on the tow axles loaded with passengers, cargo and hitch weight.

Now in the owners manual you should find the GCWR...gross combined weight rating which is the maximum the truck and trailer can weight total.

Now load up the 'Burb like you will travel and get it weighed with full fuel.

GVWR - loaded truck = Max loaded trailer hitch weight.

GCWR - loaded truck = max loaded trailer weight.

If you are estimating the hitch weight, take 12% of the trailer GVWR .

The problem with a 1500 'Burb (1/2 ton) is the limited GVWR and cargo carrying capacity. Once loaded, you won't have a lot of room left for the hitch weight of the trailer.

Most standard "burbs will have a 3.08, 3.23 or a 3.42 axle ratio. For real towing you need a 3.73 axle or for a larger trailer a 4.10 axle.

The 'Burd towing will do something in the 6 to 8 mpg mileage range depending on speed and trailer weight.

Have fun shopping, just do your home work in advance.

Ken
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Old 11-02-2011, 07:41 PM   #3
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Thanks for the information Ken, will grab the book and start checking that all out :-)
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Old 11-02-2011, 08:21 PM   #4
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Looking in the manual and the door sticker the gvwr =6800lbs , the axle is either a 3.42 or 3.73 as ours is actually a C1500 so still 1/2 tonne.

Also says Max trailer weight for each rear axle ratio 3.42= 5500lbs and 3.73= 6500lbs

Will still visit the Chevy dealer and get the exact specs on our truck and go from there. Says in the book that anything over 2000lbs we will need the oil cooler.
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Old 11-02-2011, 08:31 PM   #5
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The max trailer weight is calculated with a base model truck and only a 150# driver. So anything added over that base weight reduces the tow rating. And that is a loaded trailer, not a dry weight.

It is pretty easy to get a trailer up to 1000# or more over the brochure weight. The dry weight of a trailer does not include any item listed as an option...such as A/C, microwave, batteries, awning and so on.

The weight on the sticker inside a cabinet is supposed to be a weight as shipped, but will not include any dealer added items.

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Old 11-02-2011, 08:56 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pauland Ro View Post
What sort of size/length/weight of TT could we be looking at getting /being able to pull with the Burb?
As TXiceman hinted, we don't have enough info to help with more than generalizations. But here's my generalization: The K-1500 Suburban has the same chassis/drivetrain as a half-ton pickup, but that heavy station wagon body weighs a lot more than a pickup cab and bed. So your problem will be limited GVWR of the tow vehicle, which limits hitch weight, which in turn limits the weight of the trailer you can tow without being overloaded. There are several other weight ratings associated with your Burb, but the GVWR will probably be your limiter so you can ignore the other weight ratings.

Here's how you can determine how much trailer you can tow without exceeding the GVWR of the tow vehicle:

1. Load the Burb with people, tools, extra fluids, jack(s), pets, hitch (ball mount and ball) and anything else that will be in/on the tow vehicle when towing.

2. Go to a truckstop that has a CAT scale and fill the gas tank with gas. Then weigh the wet and loaded tow vehicle (including driver and everyone else).

3. The GVWR of the Burb, along with the VIN, month/year of assembly, tire size and PSI, paint and trim codes, and other info, will be on a sticker, probably inside the driver's doorframe. Subtract the weight of the wet and loaded tow vehicle from the GVWR, and the answer is the max hitch weight you can have without being overloaded. Divide that hitch weight by 12 percent to determine the approximate max GVWR of any TT you can tow without being overloaded.

Warning: With a half-ton Burb loaded with people and other stuff, the answer will be only a tiny, lightweight trailer.

CAT scale = Certified Automated Truck scale

Example 1: If the GVWR of your Burb is 7,200 pounds and the wet and loaded tow vehicle weighs 6,500 pounds, that leaves 700 pounds for max hitch weight. 700 divided by 0.12 = 5,833. So the GVWR of any TT you consider should not be more than about 5,833 pounds.

Example 2: If the GVWR of your Burb is 7,200 pounds and the wet and loaded tow vehicle weighs 6,900 pounds, that leaves 300 pounds for max hitch weight. 300 divided by 0.12 = 2,500. So the GVWR of any TT you consider should not be more than about 2,500 pounds.
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Old 11-03-2011, 09:05 AM   #7
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Don't GM trucks have all the installed options listed on a placard on the inside of the glove compartment door? Seems I have seen that somewhere...
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Old 11-03-2011, 12:14 PM   #8
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The second rad in front of the radiator is probably the A/C condenser.
This could also be an aftermarket tranny cooler.
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Old 11-03-2011, 01:49 PM   #9
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I know our '94 olds cutlass has got the same second Rad in front of the main one as has our '87 bounder and both are tranny coolers, but will definitely check with Chevy to see exactly what we have got.

Oh and a trip to a truck stop to weigh it fully loaded is on the cards as soon as we change out the fuel pump that's playing up!

Thank you for all your help and advice.
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