Let's Talk Towing (With a 25+ Year Old Truck)

Discussion in 'Towing' started by NightRunner, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. NightRunner

    NightRunner Supporting Member

    Messages:
    407
    Likes Received:
    160
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2018
    Location:
    DFW, TX
    So I wanted to start a thread and get some personal experience from others about towing with their trucks, and wanted a bit of advice myself. I'm relatively new to my '91 C1500, and the only time I've ever had to tow something rather large was helping a friend move (which towing a loaded down car trailer filled with furniture in your 454/TH400 C10 isn't exactly fun).

    I wanted to see what I should kind of look for before getting ready to tow moderate loads around 5000lbs max (including trailer). I replaced the stock transmission cooler with a better fin/plate setup and bought a transmission temperature gauge to monitor temperatures as well. Brakes pads and rotors were replaced up front, brake shoes and hardware were replaced in the rear, a new prop valve was also installed (deleting the ABS in the process however), and a full ignition tune up is planned when I replace my old coolant temp sender and thermostat (195 good enough for towing?). What else should I examine/replace?
     
  2. Nathaniel2g

    Nathaniel2g Rusty Islander

    Age:
    23
    Messages:
    358
    Likes Received:
    64
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Location:
    Prince Edward Island, Canada
    Suspension and brakes are the two biggest issues when it comes to hauling, IMO. You need to be able to stop the trailer and you need to be able to control the trailer. I'd be checking your springs for fatigue/cracks, your hangers, your spring bushings and your shocks, all in the rear to start. The trailer is going to ride more comfortably and you will be able to control it better if everything is tight.

    Also a good thing to note; check your hitch setup. Chances are that hitch has been on your truck for the last decade, at least, and may have damage or be rotten. The hardware is probably going to be the first thing to go if you have a quality hitch.
     
    NightRunner likes this.
  3. NightRunner

    NightRunner Supporting Member

    Messages:
    407
    Likes Received:
    160
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2018
    Location:
    DFW, TX
    Probably should've mentioned the hitch is brand new, just installed it last month or so. Shocks are also brand new. I'll definitely look at rear leafs, hangers/shackles, and spring bushings however.
     
  4. Bardo

    Bardo Newbie

    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2017
    Location:
    Mather pa
    Does your trailer have electric brakes? Even if it doesn't you still might want to look at your pigtail and make sure you have working brake lights and turn signals.
     
    NightRunner likes this.
  5. NightRunner

    NightRunner Supporting Member

    Messages:
    407
    Likes Received:
    160
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2018
    Location:
    DFW, TX
    Honestly, I'll probably just rent a trailer when it's needed. It won't be towing something every day, but I want to be prepared when it does need to tow something. Pigtail is new, so I'm hoping everything works correctly. :p
     
  6. Elroy

    Elroy OBS Enthusiast

    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    25
    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2018
    Location:
    chicago
    good shocks !!!!!!!!!

    i bought a 2015 gmc 1500 4x4 all terrain new, came with "Rancho" shocks, i have a small toyhauler that is about 5500 lb loaded, it felt like alot of trailer behind my new truck at first, any bad pavement was hell and the ride was horrible, i put bilstein 4600s in my 1996 truck a couple months ago, and it rode better than my 2015 so i got the bilstein 5100s for the newer truck, threw just the rear shocks in right before a trip with the trailer, night and day difference , the old ranchos with 22K miles had over 3 inch of free travel before any shock absorbsion was gonna happen, they are cheap chinese shocks with rancho stickers on them, useless garbage, go bilstien !!
     
    NightRunner likes this.
  7. John Moore

    John Moore OBS Enthusiast

    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    36
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2018
    Location:
    North Carolina
    I always like the comfort of running an auxiliary cooling fan when towing. The 454 trucks came with one, mounts to the front of the radiator support. I can tell a difference especially on the hot, humid summer days here in NC. Runs a little cooler along with a little cooler A/C. IMO, Trailer brakes are a must. Luckily these come pre-wired for trailer brakes, just have to wire it them up and add a controller. Good luck!
     
    NightRunner likes this.
  8. NightRunner

    NightRunner Supporting Member

    Messages:
    407
    Likes Received:
    160
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2018
    Location:
    DFW, TX
    Just out of pure curiosity, is this the correct towing capacity? Found the information on trailers.com

    7500lbs sounds a little much for my setup. AFAIK, I don't have the Z82 trailering package nor do I have 3.73 gears (GU8, 3.42 as far as I know).
     
  9. east302

    east302 I'm Awesome

    Messages:
    1,446
    Likes Received:
    429
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2013
    Location:
    Jackson, MS
    Here is the towing information from a 96 owners manual. I wouldn’t think that the TBI would be any more than this. It looks like the information that you found is correct for a 350 with 3.73.

    [​IMG]



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    NightRunner likes this.
  10. Elroy

    Elroy OBS Enthusiast

    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    25
    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2018
    Location:
    chicago
    7500 is with the max trailering pkg which includes 3.73 axle
     

Share This Page