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chitownjnco 11-03-2012 01:57 AM

High Altitude Towing
Hey Guys, this is my first post on this site. I have a 12 1500 Longhorn with standard 3:55 rear end. I'm looking at purchasing a travel trailer RV something like a Keystone Vantage or Lacrosse Lux Light something in the 30-34 ft range with a dry weight of 7000lbs TW of 750lbs with a weight distributing hitch. I live in Colorado and heard something about reducing rated tow weight by 20% at higher altitudes. Have any of you guys towed anything much heavier than this? I don't plan on towing long distances with full tanks which could almost add 800lbs but would like to tow to Yellowstone or Grand Canyon with the fam about 700-1000 miles. Are the rear coils going to pose an issue with "squatting" once I'm loaded up? I'm averaging between 20-21 mpg's hwy any idea's how much I'm gonna lose pulling this RV? Any help is greatly appreciated.



GTyankee 11-03-2012 06:16 AM

use the TOW/HAUL mode when towing

sandawilliams 11-03-2012 01:24 PM

High Altitude Towing
Hello fellow Coloradoan,

I have towed my 31' jayco, 7200 LBS. loaded, with my hemi and 3.55's about 25000 miles now and it has no problem going up the hills. Monarch pass is easily pulled at the speed limit. We have been all over the country with it to include Alaska. Make sure you use a weight distribution hitch adjusted properly-check the reese website for proper installation. The truck will squat a few inches when hitched properly but that is needed for proper hitch weight. Be aware that if you tow like I do you will notice cupping in your tires but that is not a big concern unless you tow alot. I ended up installing the TLC leveling system to remedy that. As mentioned before always tow with tow/haul activated to save the tranny and gain better shift points.

chitownjnco 11-03-2012 10:10 PM

Wow thanks guys, That info really helps. Never even considered a trip all the way to AK with it even though I'm there a couple of times a year, I always wanted to make the drive. I have Pro Comp shocks on the front to level it, do you think that would help? What kind of mpg's do you see when you pull your Jayco?

Gantman 11-03-2012 10:41 PM

sandawilliams; great post of information there and way to represent for the 3.55 rear ends proving it can be done. Especially in the hills of Colorado at that. For chitown, the unfortunate thing about a leveling kit is when you tow heavy without any suspension upgrades for the rear, such as HD coilsprings, AirLift 1000's or TotalLoadControl air systems, the rear will squat considerably as it was designed to do so in its OE demon drop stance. Definitely a Weight Distribution System like sandawilliams recommended and don't be shy on manually shifting gears in Tow/Haul mode if need be bud.

sandawilliams 11-04-2012 09:52 AM

high altitude towing
chitownjnco- Have towed with this setup for about 25,000 miles. My overall MPG is 9.3 Not really bad considering the overall terrain and at times 50 MPH crosswinds. I dont think front HD shocks will help in towing applications. I didnt install the TLC system until I had towed about 20,000 miles but after I did I dont experience the tire cupping problem I had before. You dont really need any help in the rear suspension if you arent going to tow those kind of miles all at once but if your in it for the long haul it will pay for itself. Just be sure to adjust the distribution hitch properly for proper handling going down the road. I will attempt to attach some pictures with the factory rear suspension and then with the TLC system.
Also I agree with what Gantman offered. He seems to know our trucks pretty well.

sandawilliams 11-04-2012 10:00 AM

high altitude towing
no luck uploading pictures.

chitownjnco 11-05-2012 12:16 AM

Thanks A lot guys!!! Lots of great info here, I really appreciate it.

Milehighturbo 04-26-2013 01:29 AM

I think that is too much for that truck, if you we're in a sea level state all flat with 3.92 gears maybe, but load up the trailer, family and being in the altitude = too much for that truck!!!

Just my $ .02

h2oman 04-26-2013 04:51 PM

Sorry for the shameless plug. It's just that I had such apprehension about towing my trailer through the mountains the first time that I wish I had someone to share some experience with. Hope this helps.

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