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Old 06-21-2017, 06:56 PM   #1
Wildhorse
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Towing in extreme temperatures?

This weekend the wife and I are scheduled to leave on a long since planned vacation. Our route will take us thru the desert, and Needles for example is forecast to be 122f this weekend.

I've never used our Raptor in temps anywhere near this and have no idea what to expect. I plan to travel with the generator running and both roof a/c's on, but have no idea if they can realistically cool the trailer in such high outside temps.

I had a nagging feeling about the Chinese tires that came on the Raptor and had Goodyear G-614's installed yesterday and they are set at 110 lbs. It was hard to trash tires with no noticeable wear, but the thought of breaking down in this heat wave overcame me. Lots of stories out there of tire failures and they got the better of me.

My truck is a 1 ton SRW GMC Duramax with 18,000 miles and a recent service.

I'd like to drive no more than 6 hours per day and then overnight. This puts us the first afternoon stopping in the 122f temps.

Any advice from anybody experienced in traveling in such extreme temps greatly appreciated. Also, can the roof a/c's that come on these things actually make it so we can live in the thing under these conditions? Will my new tires live? I'm imagining the roads are going to so damned hot that they'll be running around 150f at best. I've thought about driving at night, but I know the trucks a/c will keep us cool in the day. Not sure about the camper being able to do the same if we are parked all day....

Thanks again for any experience that could be shared...
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Old 06-21-2017, 07:04 PM   #2
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Hope your trip goes well. Since you are going to run your AC while traveling you may be ahead of the game. Let us know how it goes.


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Old 06-21-2017, 07:11 PM   #3
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Believe it or not your tires will probably only run 10-15 degrees above outside air temps. The pressures will just up about 15 psi from cold when you get to the hottest part of the day. We just got back from a trip where we saw triple digits while towing daily, but the high was only 114. Running with the AC will give you a good head start. We would just set up in the afternoon/evening and then go somewhere for an hour or so for dinner. It was usually pretty good indie bu the time we got back, around 80. It took the AC about 2.5 hours to get out 5er down to 71-72ish with triple digits. You will be facing temps a little higher than we had though
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Old 06-21-2017, 07:23 PM   #4
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Grew up in Las Vegas. Very familiar with the road down to "Need Less".
#1 Always park in the shade. Just kidding. I'd suggest investing in a TPMS at least for the TH. They will tell you if the tires are running too hot as well as tire pressure. A well worthwhile $250 investment.
Your A/C should be able to provide about a 20 to 30 degree delta from the outside temp. It will be hot during the day but the nights will be nice. I know Bakersfield gets hot in the summer so you should have a pretty good idea of what to do to help keep the coach cool. Put out the awning (shade) pull the blinds (shade) cook outdoors as much as possible (in the shade) drink plenty of cold beverages!!
Your Duramax should be able to handle the heat but take note of your gauges if you are pulling a grade for any period of time. EGT can get way hot if the turbo is running full tilt.
We liked to start our dive as early as practical i.e. rolling out by 7 when it's still a little cooler and finding our next (shady) camp spot by 2. Yes, that means setting up in hottest part of the day but it's way easier on the Duramax. I'm sure there are other desert rats out there with more ideas and info.
Above all enjoy the trip!
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Old 06-21-2017, 08:08 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies. I'm calming down a bit regarding the tire temps.which were really worrying me. We're certainly going to know in a couple of weeks if this was a good idea..... We're excited though...
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Old 06-21-2017, 08:27 PM   #6
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Mainly the tranny temp is what causes problems towing in high temps. If it or the engine temps get to high pull over and idle. That is as long as the over heat is not from a leak. Some turn the engine off to get the temps down. Shutting the engine off raises the temps.
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Old 06-21-2017, 08:40 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken / Claudia View Post
Mainly the tranny temp is what causes problems towing in high temps. If it or the engine temps get to high pull over and idle. That is as long as the over heat is not from a leak. Some turn the engine off to get the temps down. Shutting the engine off raises the temps.


My F350 had no problem pulling 14,000 all day to 118. Tranny never went more than about 15 more than normal. Ran past dinner time to set up when cooler as no genny so coach AC was not run until stopped. Two 15k AC worked hard for a while to drop 23 . No shade anywhere. Blinds always down. Started Fantastic Fan 15 minutes before starting AC to pull heat out. Stuffed a pillow in the shower skylight to keep heat out. Have fun. BTW, once during that kind of heat there was enough.


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Old 06-21-2017, 11:15 PM   #8
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Another option when traveling in the desert during those high temps is, travel at night, stop by no later than 10 am, set up and run both A/C;s while you rest and sleep, then, pick a time in the evening when it has cooled a bit to break camp and travel again at night. You will only need to do this a couple nights til you should be across the hot area of the desert.
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Old 06-22-2017, 04:29 AM   #9
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My trans temps never went over 185, the engine hit 223 for a few seconds when climbing a continuous grade for about 10 miles in AZ. There were signs along the highway telling people to turn the AC off to avoid overheating, no way! The 220s were short lived, the temps dropped back down around 200 quickly when the terrain leveled out a bit. The TPMS is a great investment, hopefully you installed steel valve stems when you put the new tires on.
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Old 06-22-2017, 07:32 AM   #10
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We also travel with a TPMS, but in addition I use a cheap infra-red thermometer from HF. Your TPMS doesn't give you the temperature of the tread of the tire, it gives a closer temperature of the wheel at that location. Usually the tire tread is about 10 degrees hotter than the TPMS indicates.
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