Tahoe & Hauling Question

Discussion in 'Chevy Tahoe Forum (GMC Yukon, Cadillac Escalade)' started by Trailmom, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. Trailmom

    Trailmom New Member

    Hi, I'm a new member. I've been a life long Chevy fan! I have a 2005 Trailblazer 4x4 that I love! I am now needing a
    tow vehicle to pull my two horse Featherlite horse trailer. I'm looking into used 2011 Tahoe's. I test drove an LT, 4x4
    model tonight that was great! Do I really need the Heavy Duty Trailering Pkg? Can this be added to this vehicle?
    Any insight would be very much appreciated. All my friends think I need a huge 2500 Silverado truck. I'm not
    trailering far & my trailer only weighs 3800lbs unloaded. Thanks for your help.
  2. BillD64

    BillD64 Rockstar

    You need to know what the Gross Combined Weight is. That is the loaded weight of the truck with all people and cargo plus the loaded weight of the trailer. That will give you the total GCW. GM has charts that show what you need in the truck to be able to tow that weight. A 2010 Tahoe can tow up to 8500 lbs if you have the right options and the truck has nothing but the driver in it.

    Based on what you have indicated it sounds like your load would be similar to what I tow with my 03 Tahoe. The truck weighs 5120 lbs and the weight of the people and cargo inside approach 1000 lbs and the loaded trailer weight is 5500 lbs for a total 11,620 lbs. I just round off to 12K lbs. With a 3:73 axle ratio and the trailering package my Tahoe hauls the load just fine. You will need the trailering package as it provides the hitch, tranny cooler, engine oil cooler, plus the trailer wiring. You will probably need the 3:73 axle as well unless the newer trucks with their 6 speed trannys can work with a lower axle ratio like a 3:42. I know my Tahoe wouldn't do well with the 3:42. The GCWR for my Tahoe with the 3:73 is 13K lbs.

    Last edited: Dec 16, 2011
  3. Trailmom

    Trailmom New Member

    Thanks for the help. The brochure states that it comes standard with the following trailer equipment: trailering hitch platform, seven wire harness with
    independent fused trailering circuits mated to a seven-way sealed connector and a 2 inch receiver. Also standard is heavy-duty locking differential.
    The heavy duty trailering pkg is optional & not easily found on Tahoe's. Not sure of the axle ratio. Will have to talk to the dealer. They don't seem to
    know alot of info about the vehicle & hauling.

    99'HEARTBEAT MODERATOR Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    I don't know if the 11" Tahoe your looking at is a Short Wheel Base or Long Wheel Base??......below are the Tow Ratings for both of them,

    Here are the different Towing Ratings for Both of them,

    1500 Series 1/2 Ton 4WD Short Wheel Base
    5.3L V8 3.08......Max Tow Rating (5,200 lbs)......GCWR.....(11,000 lbs)
    5.3L V8 3.42.......^^^^^^^^^^^^^ (5,700 lbs) ^^^^^^^^^^ (11,500 lbs)
    5.3L V8 3.42.......^^^^^^^^^^^^^ (8,200 lbs) ^^^^^^^^^^ (14,000 lbs)
    With.....K5L HD Cooling Pkg.

    1500 Series 1/2 Ton 4WD Long Wheel Base,
    5.3L V8 3.08.......Max Tow Rating (5,000 lbs)......GCWR......(11,000 lbs)
    5.3L V8 3.42.......^^^^^^^^^^^^^^(5,500 lbs) ^^^^^^^^^^ (11,500 lbs)
    5.3L V8 3.42.......^^^^^^^^^^^^^^(8,000 lbs) ^^^^^^^^^^ (14,000 lbs)
    With.....K5L HD Cooling Pkg.

    The Wording for RPO Code.....it stand for Regular Production Option......in short it means what a G.M or Chevy Truck or Car came with from the Factory.......from What Engine to the Color of the Interior,

    The RPO Code for the HD Trailering/Cooling Package is.....K5L..and below are the Features that come with this package,

    [TABLE="class: main"]
    [TD="class: content"]Trailering Package, Heavy-duty, includes (GU6) 3.42 rear axle ratio, (KNP) External Transmission Oil Cooler and (KC4) Engine Oil Cooler, Provides Increased Trailering Capabilities.
    1 - Also includes (NQH) 2-speed active transfer case on CK10936 models. Included with (PDA) Texas Edition and (PEB) Regional Value Package.
    2 - Also includes (NQH) 2-speed active transfer case on CK10936 models.
    [TD="class: contentattrib, width: 5%"][/TD]
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2011
  5. BillD64

    BillD64 Rockstar

    Tahoe would be short wheel base as they only come in one size and are about 2 ft shorter than a Suburban. Based on that info it looks like the newer trucks with the 6 speed use the 3:42 axle for towing. OP you should really look for one with the Trailering package since it comes with the transmission and engine oil coolers which really are necessary. If you are at a Chevy dealer they can look at dealer inventories of every dealer in their region and see if there is one with the correct package. That is how I got my 03. It came from a dealer over 3 hours drive away.

    The limited slip diff is nice since it can keep both two and four wheel drive vehicles from getting stuck. Have seen many people who skipped that little feature because of the cost and ended up sitting in a field with either both right side or both left side wheels spinning away. With the limited slip as long as one rear wheel has traction you can keep going. Dealers don't like to add the trailering package or the limited slip diff to the vehicles meant for their inventory because of the added cost and trying to compete on price with Ford dealers.

    Get what you need. These vehicles last a long time and can go many 100's of thousands of miles so you may be like me and have the truck for 9 years or more.


    99'HEARTBEAT MODERATOR Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    Thanks Bill......I'm Aware that the long wheel base is a Suburban.....I just miss that last night.......:glasses:
  7. Trailmom

    Trailmom New Member

    Thanks so much for all the great info! I'm still looking for a good deal on the perfect Tahoe for me.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2011
  8. Trailmom

    Trailmom New Member

    Ok, I've found two Tahoes at different dealers. Both have that great Heavy Duty Tow package. One has no other options.
    The other one is loaded with options for 1,000.00 more. But, problem is the one with more options has 20" tires. But, it does have
    backup mirror & sensors plus those great automatic mirrors that lower when backing up. Have the lighted blinkers. Has alot more options also.
    Haven't driven this Tahoe as of yet. Is going to be a road trip to get there. Do the 20" tires ride rough? Any input would be great!
  9. BillD64

    BillD64 Rockstar

    What year is the Tahoe with 20 inch rims? If it came with 20 inch rims from the factory or 20 inch rims were available as an option that year you shouldn't have any worries even if the rims on the vehicle are aftermarket rims. If the Tahoe is from a year that the factory didn't offer 20 inch rims then you should worry about the ride and other issues.

  10. 99'HEARTBEAT

    99'HEARTBEAT MODERATOR Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    Regarding the Tahoe that has 20in" Rims........I'm running the NNBS Sliverado 20in" Alloy Rims (Pictured below) the Tire Size I have on them is......275/55's and the Ride with these 20in" Rims and the Tire Size I've mentioned, Is Excellent!! and a Very Comfortable Ride, with Very Good Handling when Towing my Ski Boat........No issue's with them at all regarding a Rough Ride.

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