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Open Roads Forum  >  Towing

 > Tow Capacity Chart and weights

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eric james

Sioux Falls, SD

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Posted: 10/27/11 12:59pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ceaser 22000 wrote:

I am looking for a tow capacity chart for my 02 GMC Sierra 5.3 liter where can I find one or does someone already have a PDF file of this can't really get a straight answer when I search the internet.
Brian


Here's a great new database. Just plug in your model and search: Trailer Life


2009 Keystone Passport UL 290BH
2003 Ford Expedition EB 5.4L/3.73



lbrjet

Gold Canyon, AZ

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Posted: 10/27/11 06:09pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Both of my GM's had the axle ratio on a white sticker on the inside of the glove box door.


2010 F250 4X4 5.4L 3.73 LS
2011 Flagstaff 831FKBSS
Equalizer E4 1200/12000

MitchF150

Puyallup, WA

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Posted: 10/28/11 10:59am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ceaser 22000 wrote:

Hello everyone:

Thanks for all the good info found out last night found out that the truck has a 4.10 rear end, basically I was trying to find out if I had enough truck to tow over the mountains for I have never done any mountain driving before and making sure I wasn't going to kill the truck towing over the mountains in the process, thought I read in a post here somewhere the higher the RPM'S that it helps cool the transmission is that true.

Thanks,

Brian


The higher rpms will make it less likely that your torque converter is in an 'unlocked' situation, which will keep your trans temp lower..

Too many variables to tell you what is going to happen all the time, but in general.... Do you know the difference between a locked and unlocked TC in how your truck drives up hills? Do you know the general rpm operating range of your truck in various driving situations?

These questions really determine how a vehicle is going to react to various conditions while towing and the main reason why some fail and other don't...

Driver awareness is key to most, if not all, how a vehicle is going to live or survive at any given moment..

I could kill my 228,000 mile transmission in a matter of minutes, just backing my trailer into it's parking spot at my house if I was not aware of certain things while doing it... Yet, I've been doing it successfully for over 9 years...

Knowing the tow ratings of your rig and thinking it's going to 'survive' going over mountains and such without also being aware of it's operating conditions is no guarantee of anything..

I'm not trying to flame you or call you out in any way.. I'm just trying to say that just knowing what your MAX ratings are is not going to determine much on how it will survive...

Mitch


2013 F150 XLT 4x4 SuperCab Max Tow Egoboost 3.73 gears #7700 GVWR #1920 payload. 2003 Prowler Lynx 722F #5000 GVWR and weighs every bit of it! Happy Camping!


JBarca

Dublin, Ohio, USA

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Posted: 10/27/11 07:56pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ceaser 22000 wrote:

I am looking for a tow capacity chart for my 02 GMC Sierra 5.3 liter where can I find one or does someone already have a PDF file of this can't really get a straight answer when I search the internet. And how could I find out what rear end my truck has I look on the drivers door and all it gives me is the gross payload capacity which is 6400.
Brian


Hi Brian

I do not have a Sierra owners manual but I do have a 2002 Silverado manual which should be close. Look in yours around page 4-67. There is then 4 pages of towing numbers pending the cab size, 4 x 4 or 2 x 4 and the engine and rear axle ratio.

It will look similar to this. This is from a Suburban but you will find a chart like that in your manual


You just need your rear axle ratio. Now since you have a GM, look in the glove box. There is a bunch of 3 digit codes. GM uses RPO codes on how they build up a vehicle.

This one is out the my prior 2500 Suburban I use to have


You need to find the axle code, it's in there. Mine was a 4.10 rear axle ratio and it was a GT5 as you can see in the middle.

Here are some of the rear axle code. Trust me GM has lots of rear axle codes...

GH0 : AXLE REAR, 3.54 RATIO
GS4 : AXLE REAR, 3.70 RATIO
GT4 : AXLE REAR, 3.73 RATIO
GT5 : AXLE REAR, 4.10 RATIO

Here is one site that has a lot of them. The axle codes are way down the list http://www.angelfire.com/ny2/96transam/rpocodes.html

And another one. This one has a decoder http://lonestarthunder.com/m_rpo.php

I use to have a really nice decoder site, you would put in the year and model and it would only spit out the codes for that year and model. But I can't find it anymore...

Hope this helps

John


John & Cindy

2005 Ford F350 Super Duty, 4x4; 6.8L V10 with 4.10
CC, SB, Lariat & FX4 package
21,000 GCWR, 11,000 GVWR
Ford Tow Command
1,700# Reese HP hitch & HP Dual Cam
2 1/2" Towbeast Receiver

2004 Sunline Solaris T310SR
(I wish we were camping!)


JBarca

Dublin, Ohio, USA

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Posted: 10/27/11 08:04pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Found another RPO code site.

This might get you there faster if you at least have a G series rear axle ratio

http://www.rpocodes.com/gmrpocodesGthroughM.html

ceaser 22000

Michigan

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Posted: 10/28/11 08:16am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hello everyone:

Thanks for all the good info found out last night found out that the truck has a 4.10 rear end, basically I was trying to find out if I had enough truck to tow over the mountains for I have never done any mountain driving before and making sure I wasn't going to kill the truck towing over the mountains in the process, thought I read in a post here somewhere the higher the RPM'S that it helps cool the transmission is that true.

Thanks,

Brian

BenK

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Posted: 10/28/11 12:00pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

GREAT post by Mitch and agree that the driver is the key to longevity and safety

If you don't know how a automatic and the TC lock up works, what Mitch said is
going to not mean much.

Just take it at face value...*ANY* TC (torque converter) without *LOCK UP* can
destroy the tranny in a matter of seconds if driven wrong.

Why there is now a 'Tow/Haul' button. It locks up the TC and manages when to
shift to save the tranny.

To take the OP's comment in context...yes it is a good thing for most conditions
to have the engine and TC spin higher into it's torque/HP curve. Mitch says you
need to know how those curves look like and understand what the various points
on them mean.

If you hold the TC in stall at high throttle setting for too long, it *WILL* burn
the ATF (automatic transmission fluid) quickly. In a matter of minutes if held
in that condition. Even at a stop sign holding the vehicle/trailer up against a
hill at that stop sign without brakes. Or while towing, even in the flats but
with a head wind and the TC is NOT locked.

Sorry for the length, but this is the very short version vs the volumes that
would take to explain it all.


-Ben Picture of my rig
1996 GMC SLT Suburban 3/4 ton K3500/7.4L/4:1/+150Kmiles orig owner...
1980 Chevy Silverado C10/long bed/"BUILT" 5.7L/3:73/1 ton helper springs/+329Kmiles, bought it from dad...
1998 Mazda B2500 (1/2 ton) pickup, 2nd owner...
Praise Dyno Brake equiped and all have "nose bleed" braking!
Previous trucks/offroaders: 40's Jeep restored in mid 60's / 69 DuneBuggy (approx +1K lb: VW pan/200hpCorvair: eng, cam, dual carb'w velocity stacks'n 18" runners, 4spd transaxle) made myself from ground up / 1970 Toyota FJ40 / 1973 K5 Blazer (2dr Tahoe, 1 ton axles front/rear, +255K miles when sold it)...
Sold the boat (looking for another): Trophy with twin 150's...
51 cylinders in household, what's yours?...

MitchF150

Puyallup, WA

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Posted: 10/28/11 12:32pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just to keep the topic going from BenK, I know when my TC is locked or unlocked by just a touch of the throttle... I also know it by watching the tach while the trans is shifting.. There can be a difference of as little as 200 rpms up to 500 rpms in an unlocked to locked situation..

I've witnessed a DROP in trans temp while still climbing the hill between an unlocked and locked TC situation because I have a trans temp gauge with the sensor on the trans OUTPUT line.. This gives me an almost instant reading of my trans temp at any given time, especially when the TC is UNLOCKED... Which WILL happen, no matter how hard you try to prevent it!

Anyway, I added an aftermarket trans temp gauge (and water temp gauge) after the first year of towing my TT because I wanted to KNOW if my OEM trans cooler was enough for the job... I still have my OEM trans cooler and by actually knowing my trans and water temps (not going by the FAKE gauges on my Ford truck) I have a lot more confidence in my trucks abilities and I also know a lot more about the locking and unlocking differences in my torque converter, thus I know how my truck is doing while towing my TT..

Mitch

lbrjet

Gold Canyon, AZ

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Posted: 10/30/11 08:50am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree with Whisperide. I monitor my TC with my Scangauge. XGAUGE is SLP. .99-1.00 is TC locked. Depending on gear and speed it varies from about .6 - .9 in about .1 increments. The TC has never locked in 1st, 2nd or 3rd gears. Never. I tow 8000lbs and was mostly in 3rd gear in the PA mountains this summer. SLP in 3rd is typically .85 and tranny temp didn't go up at all. My tranny (in the summer heat) runs at 180 +/- 3 99% of the time. It did hit 189 for a couple minutes in July (reason unknown) when the outside temp temp was 105 with a heat index of 115 on the hottest day of the year. Then went right back down to 180. My tow/haul switch by itself doesn't lock the converter. It will however lock up in 4th rather then going into override at 55-60. Anything much over that I'm in overdrive with the TC unlocking for every hill. If I had 4.10 gears it would stay locked more in overdrive, but would still need to unlock at times.

After reading so much here about the TC generating so much heat locking and unlocking I was concerned with my 5.4L engine hauling 8K. I bought the Scangauge specfically to monitor the TFT because of that concern. After doing close to 5K miles this summer those concerns are gone. I can run all day in 3rd with the TC unlocked and the TFT is 180 +/- 3 just the same as running in direct with the TC locked.

whisperide

Golden Spike area

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Posted: 10/30/11 06:53am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

BenK wrote:

GREAT post by Mitch and agree that the driver is the key to longevity and safety

If you don't know how a automatic and the TC lock up works, what Mitch said is
going to not mean much.

Just take it at face value...*ANY* TC (torque converter) without *LOCK UP* can
destroy the tranny in a matter of seconds if driven wrong.

Why there is now a 'Tow/Haul' button. It locks up the TC and manages when to
shift to save the tranny.

To take the OP's comment in context...yes it is a good thing for most conditions
to have the engine and TC spin higher into it's torque/HP curve. Mitch says you
need to know how those curves look like and understand what the various points
on them mean.

If you hold the TC in stall at high throttle setting for too long, it *WILL* burn
the ATF (automatic transmission fluid) quickly. In a matter of minutes if held
in that condition. Even at a stop sign holding the vehicle/trailer up against a
hill at that stop sign without brakes. Or while towing, even in the flats but
with a head wind and the TC is NOT locked.


Mostly wrong.
Torque converters didn't exist, as we know them now, until the mid-'60s. And they didn't get lockup until the early-'80s. Yet all through the '70s, guys were towing with 454s and 460s, without destroying torque converters or transmissions.
The lockup is there ONLY for MPG when cruising. It's not applicable to towing. It's not made to hold much torque.
There's good reason that towing packages include some sort of ATF cooler. On most GMs, the cooler is standard anyway.
The tow/haul button doesn't lock the converter. It actually contributes to more of the opposite.
As for getting fluid through the cooler, this has nothing to do with lockup or not, and nothing to do with the tow/haul button.

* This post was edited 10/30/11 09:08am by an administrator/moderator *


'06 GMC C2500HD RCLB gasser 4.10:1, 4L80E, custom camshaft
'84 Trans Am 6.2 diesel, 700R-4, custom Class-3 receiver
'69 F350 dually. GM 6.2 diesel, turbo, 700R-4, NP208 all pending.

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