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2023 Sierra LZ0 3.0 Standard Bed
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114 Posts
Hi all.

My wife and I bought a pop up camper during COVID and are looking to upgrade to a travel trailer. I've been trying to stay around 32 feet or less and about 6,000 lbs. I recently bought a '22 Silverado RST crew cab w/ a short bed and a 5.3 v8. Towing capacity is 9,200 lbs.

For the most part we camp state parks within a couple hours of the house but wouldn't mind venturing out a little further. We live in Ohio so no mountains here but if we were to go south through West Virginia or Tennessee we could hit mountains if we went that route.

Is this a realistic set up? Am I pushing the limits too far with a 1/2 ton and a trailer of this size or should I be looking at something smaller? The camper we like is pretty much right at 6k.
I've towed for 3 years or so up and down the east side of the US including mountains almost every other month. I just came back from a trip in northern Georgia two weeks ago. I just ordered a 23 Sierra 3.0 because I have to keep my truck empty due to lack of capacity. While it totally rocks from a towing perspective the fact that I can't use the bed for pretty much anything is what's making me up size. The Sierra will give me another 400 lbs of capacity and that's all I will ever need for just the two of us.

As others have stated a half ton trucks capacity is one of the biggest issues when towing an RV. Once you factor in your tongue weight and passengers it doesn't leave much for any cargo. My trailer is a 25 foot box, 30' including the tongue. The dry weight of the trailer 5300 lbs for me and does not include the two propane tanks and most trailers mount the battery on the tongue as well and it's not included in the dry weight either. I wouldn't tow without a weight distribution hitch W/ Sway control. The problem is most of the hitches are in the 75 to 100 lb area so this needs to be factored in as well on the trucks capacity. I use an Anderson WDH hitch because it was the lightest and it's quiet compared to the spring bar models when turning. Just be mindful of the label on your drivers door of your total capacity because it creeps up quickly.

Also, things like where on the trailer is your storage, forward or aft of the trailer axles? Are you going to be "boon docking" if so where on the trailer are the all of the holding tanks forward or aft of the axles? Between Fresh water, gray water and the black water tank they can change your tongue weight considerably thereby reducing you truck carrying capacity.

Keeping your tongue weight at around 11% to 12% (min of 10%) of your trailers weight will really keep sway down to a minimum (still using a WDH W/ sway control). I recommend getting a hitch scale it's worth the $ for piece of mind. It really helps when loading so you can balance your load to keep all the weight in the desired zone. I typically travel dry except a few gallons in the fresh and a few in the black tank, this is in case of a unplanned restroom need.

This is my current set up until the new ride comes in existence, 2018 Colorado long bed with a 2.8 diesel.



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· Registered
2023 Sierra LZ0 3.0 Standard Bed
Joined
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114 Posts
Don’t forget to consider upgrading brakes.
A commonly overlooked upgrade… I’d suggest looking into a nice tow package upgrade, you won’t be disappointed.
Not really needed but will help fight sway…. Airbags. My brother in law had a F150 with bags and upgraded to a 350… he didn’t like the sway and has since added bags. Now he’s happier than Yogi with a picnic basket.
yup I have bags on the Colorado and they do make a big difference.
 

· Registered
2023 Sierra LZ0 3.0 Standard Bed
Joined
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114 Posts
Current 2500's are taller than the 'factory 2" lifted' 1500''s
Non lifted 2023 1500's will be 75.5" =/- a few '10ths. (So 6' 4" or less)

I'm not sure about a 2013 2500, but if it just clears a 7 ' (84") opening, it's sounds like its taller than the current 1500's.

2023 2500 crews are between 79" and 80"
And that's part of my issue I really need to be able to put the truck in the garage. Sometimes I won't use my truck for 3 weeks because I have a company ride. Between that company ride and the wifes vehicle the truck would just get beat to hell in the SFL sun not getting used so it needs to fit in the garage.
 
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