OK, need some feedback on our new-to-us tow vehicle. It is a 2001 Chev 2500HD extended cab, long bed, 126k miles with 8.1L motor backed up with a 5 speed Allison automatic.
We will be using it to tow our 8600 pound Sunline travel trailer. We know that it will pass everything except a gas station.
Thanks in advance.
John Spear RMCS(SW)USN RET '88
Debra is my nagagator! She tells me where to go.">
I owned an 01 2500HD 8.1 with the Allison and you'll have no issues towing that travel trailer at all...The 8.1 is a towing animal...Your right on it loving the gas stations..but you have to take the pros with the cons....I would venture to say that you might be able to say that you'll hardly know it's back there...I towed a 27' TT with mine, then a 27' 5er and both didn't come close to challenging the towing ability the truck has...I towed with it in the mountains of WV, TN, SC, NC and VA and again, it's a great tow vehicle...enjoy it....
Jim & Kathy
2013 Ram 3500DRW Longhorn 4X4/CC/LB/Aisin tranny/4:10/Cummins
2016 Jayco Seismic 4112 TH., Splendide W/D, Trav'ler HD Satellite
B&W RVK3600 Hitch
Boxers;Buddy& Sheba II USAF 71-75 Vietnam Vet
Congratulations! I'm sure you already know that even though it'll be thirsty you saved thousands over buying new, which will buy you many tankfuls of gas. Just try to stay under 60MPH and it might not be as bad as you think. Post a few pictures also! happy trails,
As stated, 8.1/A is an awesome towing machine. They use about a quart of oil every oil change, so don't be freaked out when you pull the stick and have to add some. Make sure you change the plugs if they haven't been, and watch out for the crank sensor, they are the 8.1's weak point. If it hasn't failed yet, have it changed just incase, because it will leave you dead in the water. Put a blackbear tune on it and you are all set. My brother has a bone stock one and it has awesome power already. Gas stations will love you, but you are still way better off than buying a new truck. The 8.1's are highly sought after and somewhat hard to find. Enjoy your truck!
1999 Holiday Rambler Endeavor 38'. Cummins ISB 275, allison 3060.
Tow car: 2006 Honda CRV.
Toys pulled: 22x8.5 open deck PJ flatbed. 5200# axles. Sand car with ecotec engine. Multiple 1980's ATC's(3 wheelers). We're duners!
I agree, the 8.1s are highly regarded around here. I love mine as well. As in the previous post, they will use a little oil. Nothing to worry about. I agree about the sensor! Two things you need to know. One is that every once in a while, you will notice a 'knock' or hard 'rattle',when starting a cold engine, that is normal. Technical term 'piston slap' that most Vortec engines have. My 8.1 does it. Number two, is check the engine for oil leaks around the bottom of the front cover. The part costs about $100 and can easily be done in an afternoon which includes taking off the fan clutch, fan and water pump. I always put new hoses and belts on used trucks that I buy as well as a new t-stat. As another has already posted, these trucks are thirsty, but they are also towing beasts! Good luck with your truck and happy camping!
.............I purchased my 8.1 in june '09 with 45k miles ! It's got 52k now , and I enjoy driving it . Trailer hasn't moved in 4 years but things maybe changing and so A'trailering I may go before the end of 2012 . I'm preparing for 6 mpg but I haven't spent $5k on a rebuilt set of injectors , either . It's the second best choice for a tow vehicle , after a diesel ! , jf