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Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby Frost [OP] » Apr 07 2015, 4:28am

I've been going around and around about this, I just need someone who actually has experience with this that's not actually trying to sell me a truck.

I have a trailer that is 6k lbs dry weight, but with the family and all the crap that comes with the trailer I'd say 8k lbs is what I would be towing.

The truck I've been hunting for is a 1500 crew cab with the max tow package (I don't want a 2500) and every salesman that I talk to when I tell them what I want says the 3.42 is rated for 9500lbs and can handle that weight quite easily.

Does anyone have any experience with such a setup as the 3.42 with a trailer of similar weight?

Thanks.
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby krausee » Apr 07 2015, 4:59am

I towed 6,000 pounds (no trailer brakes.. bummer) with a 5.3 liter silverado and 3.42 gears. It always seemed to strain. Flat land, Florida, it just growled/strained but it did just "okay" overall.

My two cents is that a 1500 series is going to strain at 8,000 towed weight. I was never comfortable with that feeling of impending doom.

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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby 09chevyman » Apr 07 2015, 5:19am

I would feel much safer towing 8k in a 2015 with Max tow..than the max tow that, I've pulled with my 5.3L 4sp with 3:73 gears..but it does ok.
My opinion, you'll be fine...just load everything properly and adjust the WDH accordingly. Just keep your payload weight in check.

Btw, if your climbing hills expect downshifts and higher rpm's, unless you've got a D-Max under the hood.
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby Frost [OP] » Apr 07 2015, 5:28am

I've been towing it with a 2001 5.3l with the 4sp and 3.73. It gets a little dicey at times and since I need to replace my truck I thought I should go with the 3.73 that I'm used to just with the newer 6sp 5.3L. The towing capacity of the new trucks are far superior to what I have been using for the past two years towing so that why I was wanting if anyone has used a new truck to pull a similar setup. 3.08 and 3.42's are everywhere but the max tow with the 3.73 is like hunting for a unicorn. Alas, a new truck seems to be my only option if I want the 3.73 so if I'm going to spend that kind of money I have to make sure it's going to do as I want because I'm going to have the truck for 10years at least.

Thanks for the feedback.
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby krausee » Apr 07 2015, 5:34am

and... a 2500 isn't in your plan? I heard you use the word "dicey"... I had the same feeling and grew uncomfortable with that. ( I was only towing 6,000 max on flat land over about 200 miles )

Good luck, hope you enjoy the 2500
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby Frost [OP] » Apr 07 2015, 5:39am

My existing truck is only rated for 8500lbs, so ya it gets a little dicey. As for the 2500, it's to much truck for the majority of my use. It's only the half a dozen or so long trips in the summer I need the towing for.

I get the sneaking impression that it's either the max tow with the 3.73 or a 2500. I took one for a test drive the other day, great truck but those freaking mirrors are huge! Talk about blind spots I guess its just what your used to.
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby Scot » Apr 10 2015, 1:51pm

Thats close to the max limit. It will pull it but you may habe to stop it and thats where it get dicey. I just picked up an 09 5.3 with max tow and 3:73 to tow. Been pulling for some time and maxing out any rig is a little scary. Most i plan to ever pull with this truck is around 6500 to 7000 max.
assume you are using a weight distributing hitch and trailer brakes?
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby texasborn81 » Apr 12 2015, 2:52pm

Just bought a 31' TT, dry weight is a little over 6000 and towed it from Houston to the hill country north of San Antonio. 2014 5.3 3.42 double cab, i was a little weary at first but after a little while of driving i realized that the truck handled it extremely well! We went through the backroads which are very hilly and no problem. A couple of things though, i recommend some sort of air bag helper or something. It squats! Second i was testing the waters with only a few things extra weight so the wife could see that i was right in wanting to get 3.73 or maybe 4.10 gears installed...she agreed that she would feel more comfortable with them! Also i plan on adding airaid intake tube and freeing the exhaust some as well as a tuner for the gears and added parts. I feel with those add ons the truck should handle the weight just fine plus it is alot cheaper and easier than finding a Max tow with the options you want.
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby texasborn81 » Apr 12 2015, 2:57pm

See the sag! Mpgs on highway were about 9~10 and through the hills were about the same! Easy to maintain 65 on highway and speed through the hills was not an issue at all.
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Re: Can a 3.42, 2015 1500 easily handle 8000lbs towing?

Postby esox07 » Apr 12 2015, 5:10pm

I pull a 19' TT at just under 3000 dry. 2013, 3.42, 5.3l, HD tow pkg. It does great for local trips and flat land. It certainly requires slower driving on mountains and hills. I plan on driving from central Wisconsin to San Antonio Texas later this summer with it. If you plan on shorter local trips I think you'll be okay. But I wouldn't plan on driving across the Rockies or cross country with it. You are clearly pushing the limits of your trucks capabilities.
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