Towing 26ft camper (4600lbs) - Chevy Traverse Forum: Chevrolet Traverse Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-25-2019, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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Towing 26ft camper (4600lbs)

Good Afternoon

I am new to this forum but not new to forums as spent substantial amount of time on chevrolet blazer forum before blazer was written off.

In the fall we purchased a 2014 Traverse LT AWD with the V92 Tow package. We just purchased a new 26 foot Jayco camper trailer that is going to come in around 4600lbs dry so we are going to be coming in around or slightly above the 5200lb towing capacity when loaded and including passengers. Will be mostly on flats, very little hills and we will not be venturing farther than a few hours from home.

In anticipation of this and potential head winds I want to make sure I have every base covered before hand (I blew the transmission cooler in my Chevrolet blazer in the mountains, same design where it is integrated into the radiator and it was an absolute disaster once transmission fluid and coolant mix and get into the engine and transmission).

I am going to add an auxiliary transmission cooler but am curious as to others thoughts on this.

I am looking at either the B&M 13,000 or 14,000 BTU coolers. On the Acadia forum I noticed an install on the 13,000 BTU that required little modification and outside of the included mounting hardware only needed a 90 degree gm quick connect. Concern is that the 14,000 BTU might be a bit too big to do an easy install and will require further modification.

Any comments on the size of transmission cooler? We are in Manitoba so not normally experiencing overly high temperatures, but the concern of too much cooling in the Winter is a concern and I would prefer to not install a bypass on the transmission cooler.

Also I had noticed some comments while browsing with questions regarding which line is the supply and the return, the line coming from the top of the transmission to the top of the radiator/cooler is the hot (supply) line, the return is the lower line.

I am going to be plugged into the OBDII port while towing and keeping an eye on temperatures.

Has anyone towing ever had an issue with Oil Cooling and needing to increase oil cooling capacity?

We have a weight distributing hitch and sway bars to that base is covered.

Will likely be using the Traverse for a few years to Tow and then will be replacing our Cruze with a truck. (Kind of digging the Jeep Gladiator right now, solely because can get a truck in standard transmission, convertible, and with electronic locking differentials independently controlled and an easily disengaged front sway bar).

Last edited by streblo; 03-25-2019 at 03:18 PM. Reason: adding information
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-25-2019, 04:56 PM
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I had an extra cooler over my trailer package in my former Uplander and in winter my wife made a. Custom blanket cover that I was using with tie wraps. It was faster than disconnecting the hoses and installing a by pass. Also I was at my limit with my trailer weight and a bit over but had no problems because my towing was on mostly level grounds and I was never driving over 55 mph.

Traverse 2017, chevy Uplander 2009 LT short wheelbase, Impala 2003, jeep cherokee Laredo 1990, chevy citation 1984 2.8 v6, vauxhall Firenza1972, rambler american 1964 model 330, vauxhall velox 1956 rebuilt, NSU Prinz 1961 2 cylinder micro car rebuilt, Renault Dauphine 1960 rebuilt, ford prefect 1952 ( english car with non hydrolic brakes rebuilt. Honda 1986 motorcycle in new condition and 13 travel trailers from a Boler 1300 to a Rockwood mini lite 20 feet.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-25-2019, 07:04 PM
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I pulled 2012 Forest River Roo 19, about 4100 lbs loaded, just wife and I. Flat Midwest. I was NOT a happy camper. Ran in 4th gear, around 3200 rpm on the flats. Any little increase in incline would drop it into 3rd. Needed a pretty good decrease in incline to get it into 5th. Never got it into 6th. Got a 2009 Silverado with 7500 towing and more payload and was a LOT happier.

Frankly, I think you are overloaded. If you are really at 5200 loaded, that means your tongue weight will be about 624-676 lbs. If you have a weight distribution hitch (and you SHOULD), add another 75-100 lbs. Look at the payload sticker on the drivers door, it looks like this:

2017 Payload sticker 3.jpg

Your tongue weight, anybody in the vehicle (kids, wife, dog, etc) and any "stuff" you put in it can't add up to more than what's on this sticker.

I'd never pull a 26 footer with a Traverse. Good luck.

2011 2LT FWD replaced by 2017 2LT AWD

Last edited by greentraverse; 03-25-2019 at 07:06 PM.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-26-2019, 07:25 AM
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I think you bought too big, which especially troublesome since you KNOW your limits and blatantly disregarded them.


Good luck.

Current Vehicles:
-2015 Pilot EX-L AWD
-2014 Traverse LT2 AWD
-1961 Impala 2 Door Sedan 283 3MT

Family Muscle:
-1969 Camaro SS 350 4MT
-1957 210 2 Door Wagon (project)
-1939 Ford 3 Window 2 Door (project)

Past Vehicles:
-2008 Sonata SE V6
-2012 Silverado LS 4.8 4WD EC
-2011 Rogue SL AWD
-2006 Accord Sedan EX-L K24 5MT
-2012 Tacoma DCSB V6 6MT 4WD
-2011 Civic Si Sedan
-2001 Pathfinder VQ35 5MT 4WD
-1997 Pathfinder VG33 4AT 4WD
-1999 ML320 4WD
-1997 Accord LX Sedan F22 4AT
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-26-2019, 10:43 AM Thread Starter
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Dry Hitch weight on the camper is 470lbs. It will be us and our two young kids (4yrs and 2yrs), we are not heavy people and our kids are young so passenger weight is not significant.

Majority of campsites we are planning to go to this summer are between 15 and 45 minutes away. For longer hauls we have my father in laws truck. Plan is to find a place we like this year, park the trailer at a seasonal next year, then purchase a truck the year after to do longer hauls when the kids are a bit older.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-26-2019, 10:48 AM
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Dry weights are a marketing tool for suckers. No trailer ever weighed it's dry weight, even at the factory. Doesn't include battery, any options, water, etc. Batteries and LP gas tanks are added by the dealers at their lot.

From a recent Forest River brochure (UVW = dry weight):

UVW (Unloaded Vehicle Weight)* - is the typical weight of the unit as manufactured at the
factory. It includes all weight at the unit’s axle(s) and tongue or pin and LP Gas. The UVW does not
include cargo, fresh potable water, additional optional equipment or dealer installed accessories.
*Estimated average based on standard build optional equipment.

Here's Jayco's definition (July 201

Unloaded Vehicle Weight (UVW): Sometimes referred to as “Dry Weight,”
UVW means the typical weight of this trailer as built at the factory. The UVW,
as used in product literature and other promotional materials, does not include
cargo, fresh water, propane, options or dealer-installed accessories.

Note that Forest River includes the LP gas weight but Jayco does not. A single 20 lb propane tank weights about 37 lb full. I'm guessing you've got two. 30 lb tanks weigh about 50 lbs. Batteries run around 40-50 bs or more depending on size.

2011 2LT FWD replaced by 2017 2LT AWD

Last edited by greentraverse; 03-26-2019 at 10:55 AM.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-26-2019, 11:13 AM
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I am all for camping and I am even more for doing it with young kids (been trying to talk my wife into this for years), but you need to think long and hard about the numbers and your situation... your intended use seems much more reasonable and the fact that you have a larger pickup you can borrow for longer trips, but I am very weary about going over manufacturer limits and would still recommend not towing this camper with your Traverse.

Current Vehicles:
-2015 Pilot EX-L AWD
-2014 Traverse LT2 AWD
-1961 Impala 2 Door Sedan 283 3MT

Family Muscle:
-1969 Camaro SS 350 4MT
-1957 210 2 Door Wagon (project)
-1939 Ford 3 Window 2 Door (project)

Past Vehicles:
-2008 Sonata SE V6
-2012 Silverado LS 4.8 4WD EC
-2011 Rogue SL AWD
-2006 Accord Sedan EX-L K24 5MT
-2012 Tacoma DCSB V6 6MT 4WD
-2011 Civic Si Sedan
-2001 Pathfinder VQ35 5MT 4WD
-1997 Pathfinder VG33 4AT 4WD
-1999 ML320 4WD
-1997 Accord LX Sedan F22 4AT
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-26-2019, 12:01 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, I appreciate the input. I will see how the traverse handles the trailer on the way home from the dealer empty when we pick it up next week and will consider borrowing the truck more frequently.

Really want to hold out and wait for the Jeep Gladiator to come out before I swap my car out for a truck.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-26-2019, 06:46 PM
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I towed a 24 foot trailer that was 5500lbs GVWR. Empty it was 4200lbs. I think I probably had it loaded around 5000lbs as we are light packers.

I towed that with my 2010 Traverse for 6 years without any issues. Flats it towed in 5th, but any slight incline I was in 4th.

I had the V92 package and I also installed an auxiliary tranny cooler which is still installed on it to this day, even though I don't tow with the Traverse anymore.

I usually put it in cruise at 62MPH and just let the truck do its thing. We towed long distances as well, including through the Appalachian mountains in West Virginia. It slowed down on some hills, but that 3.6L is pretty strong.

Do I like my F150 more, of course, but at the time the Traverse is what we had. With the F150 came a bigger trailer, so the Traverse was retired from towing.

We still use the Traverse for day to day errands and it now has 200,000 km on it. Only minor issues with it, so hopefully we get another 100,000km out of it.

FYI, our trailer was a Jayco 213EXP

2010 Traverse, 1LT, Tow Package, 7 passenger, 178,000km
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 03-27-2019, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, another question coming up. I just swapped the winter tires over to the all seasons last night and I inspect everything I can when the wheels are off.

Rear shock has a worn out bushing so I will be replacing the rear shocks on the Traverse

Will likely either put on the KYB Gas-A-Just but I am curious if anyone has used the Munroe Max Air shocks?

http://www.monroe.com/en-US/e-catalog/MA833
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