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Old 02-25-2018, 12:22 PM   #1
RVNoob
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Truck and Trailer Towing Weight Question

Hello folks,

We were at an RV show and bought a travel trailer. After working with the rep we decided on the model listed below to haul with our truck. My question is:
With the specs listed below do you feel we are good with our choice? I just want to make sure the load is not too much for the truck.

Here we go:

2017 Silverado 1500,Z71 LTZ 5.3 Liter V8 (gas), 8 speed trans., 3.42 gear ratio with towing package (not max towing package) The specs say it can haul up to 9,300 LBS. We have heard not to be past 60% of the total the truck can haul. We are at 65%. We do not plan on hauling any cargo above 1,000 LBS and carry many items in the bed of the truck.

Trailer info:

2018 Keystone Cougar 24SABWE
Dry weight is 5,910 LBS, tongue weight is 650 LBS. They say this is designed for 1;/2 ton trucks like mine (so the rep says) GVWR is 7,800 LBS

I just want to be sure when we are traveling up inclines and down we would be fine. I figured this to be the best place since there is a lot of experienced travelers here that could probably help.

Thanks so much in advance!
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Old 02-25-2018, 12:33 PM   #2
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There are a lot of very knowledgeable folks on this forum that will offer their take. Three things i would suggest, check your door sticker for your trucks max carrying capacity and plan accordingly for all people, gear and tongue weight. 2nd - get a good weight distributing hitch and have it set up properly.
3rd -congrats and welcome!
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Old 02-25-2018, 12:42 PM   #3
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Truck info
Max payload is 1,710 LBS.
GVWR is 7,200 LBS.
I also got the sway bars that I understand also distribute the weight

Thank a lot glad to be here!
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Old 02-25-2018, 01:56 PM   #4
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Sway bars help reduce trailer sway, they do not distribute weight.
Hopefully you checked all the actual weights yourself, they are there to sell rvs, nothing more.
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Old 02-25-2018, 02:35 PM   #5
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Previously I had a 8300 lb travel trailer (loaded weight) that I pulled with a 2012 Silverado. I was within specs , but not by much. Your gvwr and payload are about 200 lbs more than mine was, so I would think it is doable. Your truck has considerably more HP and torque than mine had, but mine pulled it OK. I would not want to pull it in the mountains all the time but around here it was good enough. As previously mentioned get a good weight distribution hitch with sway controll,
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Old 02-25-2018, 02:51 PM   #6
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You left out a pretty important bit of information. The number of people that will be in the truck when towing and how much they weigh. As an example, if it's you and your DW (dear wife) and you weigh 175 she weighs 125, that's 300 pounds. On the other hand, if you have 4 teenage boys, each weighing 175 pounds, your DW weighs 150 and you weigh 275, well, now you're talking a significant problem adding another 1000 pounds of "trailer tongue weight" to the mix. The "people weight of 1125 pounds would significantly impact your towing ability.

So, how much do you and your passengers weigh, how much cargo do you intend to put in the truck and in the bed, how much does the actual hitch weigh? To that, add 10-15% of the trailer GVW as an estimated tongue weight. That will give you a pretty accurate "guesstimate" of how you're going to impact your 1710 pounds of payload. Also remember that everything you've added to the truck since you bought it new is also deducted from the payload. Things like running boards, bed liner, chrome steps, tool box, floor mats and other things all come "right off the top" of your payload.

Remember that the tongue weight listed in the specs is the "shipping weight" which does not include propane, battery, hitch or any cargo and with all the tanks empty. So you can expect to add 60 pounds for propane and 40 pounds for a battery to that 650 pounds before you hitch up your truck. Then add the hitch weight (another 100 pounds and you're going to be close to 825-875 pounds of tongue weight with no cargo in the trailer.

You can estimate your trailer tongue weight to be somewhere between 780 and 1170 pounds.
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Old 02-25-2018, 03:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RVNoob View Post
Truck info
Max payload is 1,710 LBS.
GVWR is 7,200 LBS.
I also got the sway bars that I understand also distribute the weight

Thank a lot glad to be here!
Congrats! If (when) its time to upgrade your truck, let her pick the color and options... It will help lessen the sting of: "why do we need a new truck!!!?" j/k

Your truck currently weighs in the neighborhood of 5490. As JRTJH spelled out, passengers, cargo, hitch, etc., all add up quickly when trying to calculate your available payload and what you can tow, ~after~ getting everything loaded.

Another thing to keep in mind is the GCWR (combined weight when towing)
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Old 02-25-2018, 03:16 PM   #8
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Advice I can offer is to make sure you have a quality weight distribution hitch properly set up. It will make your towing experience so much better. Your payload is adequate as long as you load most of your cargo equally in the trailer. Even at your trailers GVWR, you'll have 600 lbs of payload remaining for your occupants and truck cargo. As previously mentioned, keep in mind the combined weight of your passengers as it will be directly deducted from that 600 lbs.

Remember, modern day, properly equipped 1/2 ton trucks are very capable vehicles, unlike trucks from decades ago. Just stay within the manufacture specs on payload, GVWR, axle ratings, and tire ratings (LT tires preferred). The gross tow rating on most trucks means nothing as the other capacities are reached far before the "marketed" "towing capacity".

Good luck and safe travels.
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Old 02-25-2018, 04:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K_N_L View Post
There are a lot of very knowledgeable folks on this forum that will offer their take. Three things i would suggest, check your door sticker for your trucks max carrying capacity and plan accordingly for all people, gear and tongue weight. 2nd - get a good weight distributing hitch and have it set up properly.
3rd -congrats and welcome!
Your trailer is NICE and MASSIVE!!! WOW!
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Old 02-25-2018, 04:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRTJH View Post
You left out a pretty important bit of information. The number of people that will be in the truck when towing and how much they weigh. As an example, if it's you and your DW (dear wife) and you weigh 175 she weighs 125, that's 300 pounds. On the other hand, if you have 4 teenage boys, each weighing 175 pounds, your DW weighs 150 and you weigh 275, well, now you're talking a significant problem adding another 1000 pounds of "trailer tongue weight" to the mix. The "people weight of 1125 pounds would significantly impact your towing ability.

So, how much do you and your passengers weigh, how much cargo do you intend to put in the truck and in the bed, how much does the actual hitch weigh? To that, add 10-15% of the trailer GVW as an estimated tongue weight. That will give you a pretty accurate "guesstimate" of how you're going to impact your 1710 pounds of payload. Also remember that everything you've added to the truck since you bought it new is also deducted from the payload. Things like running boards, bed liner, chrome steps, tool box, floor mats and other things all come "right off the top" of your payload.

Remember that the tongue weight listed in the specs is the "shipping weight" which does not include propane, battery, hitch or any cargo and with all the tanks empty. So you can expect to add 60 pounds for propane and 40 pounds for a battery to that 650 pounds before you hitch up your truck. Then add the hitch weight (another 100 pounds and you're going to be close to 825-875 pounds of tongue weight with no cargo in the trailer.

You can estimate your trailer tongue weight to be somewhere between 780 and 1170 pounds.
Thanks for the great info it really helps a lot!
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Old 02-25-2018, 04:27 PM   #11
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Sounds like this is a done deal and you now have both units.

The critical thing that has been pointed out is how much you are going to put in the truck plus how you load the trailer and how much you put in it. You will probably be (without weight slips) one of those that has to watch what they put in the truck/trailer and leave something behind if it's very heavy.

I am not familiar with the new 5.3 with 8 speed but figure it will be up to the task for the trailer - maybe not love the mountains, but do an acceptable job hopefully. Personally, I can't imagine pulling a 7800lb trailer with a 3.42 ratio (gas) BUT I'm hoping that 8 speed can help it out; but, a 3.42 is a 3.42.

You need a good quality WDH with sway control - absolutely. You also need to upgrade the P rated tires on the truck to LT. Take it on a long trip on some of our somewhat bumpy highways; I think you'll find that you want to add airbags for stabilization too.

You have the combo now so go use it being careful of how much you load where. When you come back from that long trip hopefully they will be having a sale on new HD trucks in your area........
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Old 02-25-2018, 04:38 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by busterbrown View Post
Advice I can offer is to make sure you have a quality weight distribution hitch properly set up. It will make your towing experience so much better. Your payload is adequate as long as you load most of your cargo equally in the trailer. Even at your trailers GVWR, you'll have 600 lbs of payload remaining for your occupants and truck cargo. As previously mentioned, keep in mind the combined weight of your passengers as it will be directly deducted from that 600 lbs.

Remember, modern day, properly equipped 1/2 ton trucks are very capable vehicles, unlike trucks from decades ago. Just stay within the manufacture specs on payload, GVWR, axle ratings, and tire ratings (LT tires preferred). The gross tow rating on most trucks means nothing as the other capacities are reached far before the "marketed" "towing capacity".

Good luck and safe travels.
More info on my weight/ sway bars. I have this setup

http://www.fastwaytrailer.com/e2-hitch

Seems to do both. I plan on taking the truck and trailer to the weigh station and have it all weighed truck first to see where we are at. We figure the people in the truck will not go over 675 pounds being a crew cab.Click image for larger version

Name:	e2trunnion_right_1501-700x700.jpg
Views:	116
Size:	24.6 KB
ID:	15432

Thanks again!
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Old 02-25-2018, 05:10 PM   #13
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I was in the same boat as you but my trailer only maxed out at 7100 lbs. My tv was a F150 3.55 rear end and the tow package. I to was trying to pull a 30 foot trailer with a 10000 e2. The truck pulled great but it could not handle the trailer side to side action caused by semi`s. I fixed that with bilstien shocks , an equalizer 4 pt. sway control hitch and load range E tires. Truck was now stable for this size and weight trailer but did not solve the 1730 max pay load. I had to lock out sixth gear even where I live but the truck pulled it fine but felt like it was close to being maxed out. Will it do it? I think so, but I never felt relaxed after the experience with the e2. I can tell you it ain`t fun when the trucks sway control kicks in and you have a stone barrier on one side and a big semi on the other. With a half ton, with me any size truck, I want the best sway control I can afford.
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Old 02-25-2018, 05:55 PM   #14
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As previously mentioned, I would really consider going from that 2 point friction hitch to an Equal-I-zer 4pt hitch. And if funds are not an deterrent, a Hensley or Propride sway elimination hitch should be considered. I went this route with my 1/2 ton that had substantially less payload and it completely removed sway in all towing conditions. Yes, it's an initial expense but, in my eyes, a long term investment on safe towing. Just a thought.
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Old 02-25-2018, 07:37 PM   #15
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You shouldn't have any problems with that combination, unless you are planning on hauling a huge family, a ton of firewood, or a generator. I would definitely get the 4 point WDH if you don't already have one.

Based on my experience on this forum I would say your bigger issue should be getting the trailer king tires off that sucker.
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Old 02-25-2018, 09:44 PM   #16
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Having a 2017 model of same trailer can you pull it sure. Will it be pleasurable? Depends. Where do you live and what are you going to do with it. When I bought mine I had a 2013 F150 with 5.0 and tow package. Local short tow it did great. Took a trip from Boise to Evanston Wyoming and was not pleasurable. 40 MPH crosswords made for many white knuckle experiences when encountering trucks. Couldn't pull 6 gear most of the time. 3rd gear screaming up some of the mountain passes at 55 MPH. Watched trans temp rise to 240 going up a logging road. Came home and traded F350 diesel. Just pulled from Boise to Las Vegas part of the trip in a blizzard. Was a more enjoyable experience. Stayed in 6 gear whole way. When roads were clear truck climbed the mountain passes at the speed cruise was set at, didn`t have to listen to the motor scream . Never had a single white knuckle experience.
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Old 02-25-2018, 09:59 PM   #17
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FYI, check out my TT listed below. I scaled it loaded with full fresh water, propane, 2 batteries loaded for 2 on a 3 day trip. Tongue wt. is 900 lbs. As far as towing I got that down with a truck that is about 2 ft shorter then the trailer and weights more. I did not buy the truck to pull this trailer but, sure like how it tows the TT.
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Old 02-25-2018, 10:28 PM   #18
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You should have no problems with that truck and TT. Best thing to do is pay careful attention to how you set the truck up. You want to make sure you return the front end to as close as possible to it's unloaded front fender height. That will ensure that you have enough weight transferred back to the front end. That will keep your steering in control and prevent wandering.
Make sure the TT is parallel to the ground after hitching and if you can't achieve that then slightly nose down.
Also make sure you have the proper tongue weight. You'll want to weight your TT after you have it loaded as if you're camping. You want the TW to be around 12.5% of the total weight of the loaded TT.
After all that get out and have some fun.
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Old 02-26-2018, 12:19 AM   #19
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I bought a Passport Elite 28BH a month ago.
TV is a 2015 Suburban 5.3L with 3.42 gears.
Equalizer WDH
TT weighs 5600lbs and I carry gear, DW and 5 kiddos in the TV.

We havenít pulled up the hills yet, but hopefully soon. So far the TV has handled it very well.

Happy camping!
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Old 02-26-2018, 02:15 AM   #20
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RVNoob, I'd say that Degrad gave you the best advice. All of the posts are worthy of consideration, but a four point and new tires rises to the top.
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