Towing a car trailer

Discussion in 'General Chevy & GM Tech Questions' started by nos351wcm, Apr 24, 2010.

  1. nos351wcm

    nos351wcm Rockstar

    Hey gents

    This up coming weekend ill be towing my roommates 87 bmw 325i back to NJ, about 250 miles or so.
    The bmw is about 2500#, the car trailer is about 2000#, with hydrualic assisted brakes

    My truck is a 2000 1500 with a 4.8L and auto trans with trans cooler, 3:73 gears and the tow haul mode.
    Ive read the max tow weight is anywhere from 6500# to 8500#? seems a bit high for a half ton, but what do i know

    My questions
    We will be going down I80 for some of the trip, and there are some nice hills. Should i keep the truck in tow haul mode, or down shift manually into 3rd, or even 2nd? If i drop below 55 ill throw the hazards on

    What is the max speed i can safely tow at? my mechanic at work says 65mph.
    Are there any pointers, or helpful tips? Ive towed trailers before for work so this isnt my first time towing.
    Will the truck be able to do it? i hope so
    Thanks for looking
    -Dan from south jersey
  2. murdog94

    murdog94 Epic Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts

    The truck really shouldnt have a problem as long as you have a good reciever.. I really wouldnt push over 65mph just for maintaining control of the trailer.. On steep grades just leave it in tow haul mode since as you kick down the throttle the tranny will downshift a lot better than the older trucks..
    One tip is and you most likely already know this but build up some extra speed going into the hills. And remerber the 4.8L isnt going to motivate that trailer with incredible speed...
    1 person likes this.
  3. Big_Ben

    Big_Ben Rockstar 100 Posts

    X2 on the speed. Going past 65mph and you start asking for it to start a little sway or even whipping.
    X2 also on the tow-haul mode. The truck has that mode for a reason, so while towing leave it on. It delays the shift points and should treat your tranny a little nicer than without it on.

    If you find yourself a little nervous coming DOWN some of the hills (i.e. there's a sharp bend near the bottom and you're building up speed) you may want to manually shift into 3rd (keeping tow-haul mode on). This will help slow you down and save your brakes some work.

    That being said, if you find yourself driving at 60-65mph on the flat and a big hill is coming up that you need to climb, do not be afraid to go above 65mph about 50 - 100 feet before the hill begins. It's not the end of the world if you go over 65 you just don't want to do it for prolonged periods of time. Hitting 70 or even 75 at the bottom of a hill should be fine as it will bleed off with the steep incline.

    One other thing you may or may not take into consideration is distance from traffic. Not judging your driving ability or experience whatsoever, just offering a tip. If you find yourself riding someone's ass for one reason or another, make sure you back off quite a bit (no matter how annoyingly slow they might be going) and let them get a decent ways up the hill before you since you're going to be building up extra speed to help you get up the hill. There's nothing worse than stepping on it only to get 1/4 to 1/3 of the way up the hill and have to let off the throttle or worse - brake - and lose all your momentum!
  4. dannys99

    dannys99 Rockstar

    You should be Ok, That is a heavy load for that truck, so take it easy. Keep it around 60. your front end will be bobbing do you dont want the trailer to start driving your truck.
  5. nos351wcm

    nos351wcm Rockstar

    Thanks for the replys guys, we'll be leaving early saturday morning, so there is no rush. I usually keep a big following distance even when not towing. Thanks again
    -Dan from south jersey
  6. murdog94

    murdog94 Epic Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts

    Not a problem safe travels...
  7. nos351wcm

    nos351wcm Rockstar

    hey guys, not sure if anyone is still following this, but thought id throw some info back.

    Towed the car, truck did great, got 17mpg too! I was suprised how well the 4.8 did, can only imagine what the 6.0 is like or the duramax.
    Thanks for the help earlier.
  8. murdog94

    murdog94 Epic Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts

    Glad to hear it all worked out safely.

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