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Old 10-16-2013, 05:05 PM   #281 (permalink)
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Exclamation tow rating

When it comes to using a vehicle that has a low tow rating, or you need to go a longer distance for whatever reason, you may want to invest in a transmission cooler to take some of the stress off the internal parts. As you may or may not know, towing adds strain to your drive train and that goes to build heat which breaks down the fluids andcauses parts to wear faster. So a good cooler system is a must have when you are towing and hauling.

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Old 10-16-2013, 05:08 PM   #282 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rednecktechie View Post
When it comes to using a vehicle that has a low tow rating, or you need to go a longer distance for whatever reason, you may want to invest in a transmission cooler to take some of the stress off the internal parts. As you may or may not know, towing adds strain to your drive train and that goes to build heat which breaks down the fluids andcauses parts to wear faster. So a good cooler system is a must have when you are towing and hauling.
Solid advice.
I'll add, that it mostly applies automatics, manuals don't heat up as much.
Also all around checking out of vehicle is a good idea, adding a little stress+ load tends to bring out issues that wouldn't normally appear for a few thousand more miles.
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Old 10-16-2013, 05:13 PM   #283 (permalink)
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Figured I'd add this

The wagon + Enclosed is me.

Mileage sucked (29.9mpg @ 65 mph) but to the best of my knowledge that is the first time that this trailer has been towed and gotten double digit MPG.
With a big load, I'd insist on brakes, but I had an incident where a guy blew a stop sign to make a U-Turn at a No U-Turn sign and I had to emergency stop, it was way better than I expected, better than some stock cars that I have driven while not towing.
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Old 10-16-2013, 05:20 PM   #284 (permalink)
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Exclamation

Quote:
Originally Posted by dremd View Post
Solid advice.
I'll add, that it mostly applies automatics, manuals don't heat up as much.
Also all around checking out of vehicle is a good idea, adding a little stress+ load tends to bring out issues that wouldn't normally appear for a few thousand more miles.
True as when you are modding anything it is almost always best to err on the side of caution and this is one of those times depending on the size of your load and distance you need to move it.
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Old 10-16-2013, 05:24 PM   #285 (permalink)
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It depends a lot on how aerodynamic that tow is. If it is it would hardly add any stress at all. If it follows the template it could even reduce total drag so it would wear less on the transmission, not more.
Remember cars should be able to handle the power they can produce by design. A long climb uphill without a tow would strain the transmission just as much as towing something heavy and unaerodynamical on the flat.

When in doubt adjust your speed... or measure gear box temp.
I have a cheap digital thermometer that I attach to whatever I want to measure. Was intake air, but now I have my UltraGauge that's not needed anymore so it can boldly go where no temp sensor has gone before...

The Insight has a maximum tow weight of exactly 0 pounds (or stone, ounces, milligrams, you name it) so I have a rooftop box to take the family stuff for a weekend off (need to talk with the wife again about that...)
The rooftop box adds 25% to my fuel consumption. I bet a small trailer would cost me less!
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Old 10-16-2013, 08:25 PM   #286 (permalink)
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My preferred method of automatic transmission temp measurement is an IR temp gun to the fluid pan, can't use it in motion, but easy once stopped.

That said, I really like the factory temp gauge on the 8 speed auto in the Big Horn.
I'll post some pics later.

Edit:


Oh and my other Favorite
OEM Brake controller that works with the ABS shockingly well.



What I used it for Last.



Truck is a Rental $35/ Day unlimited miles.
I've used it to tow A 7.3 Diesel F-250, A horse Trailer, A heavy load of steel, A Celica GTS on a Trailer, A Supra on a Trailer, and probably some other stuff.
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Last edited by dremd; 10-17-2013 at 09:31 AM..
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Old 10-16-2013, 08:47 PM   #287 (permalink)
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I still like being able to know that my temp isn't running too high while I'm running. That said, I had a modified temp gauge attached to the side of my last tow vehicle, a 1979 Tbird tranny temp usually ran into the low 120's and I was pulling a 1500 pound diesel generator plus cables, spare tire, &@80 gallons of extra fuel. Had to change fluid after the first 35000 miles but other than that I had no problem. I ran duel cooler coils that started as heater cores on an older Chevy truck.
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Old 10-16-2013, 09:58 PM   #288 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by techieguy View Post
I think keep my truck than trying to haul a trailer behind my Metro. Last load of firewood I picked up was over 6.5K lbs! If my Metro could haul 1K lbs gross that would be over six trips and and would save any fuel what so ever. Even with a full load of firewood I still manage 18-20 mpg in my 1 ton Dodge with a diesel...then there is my value of my time. Now if you are moving light but bulky items from time to time then maybe a trailer is viable.
techieguy, I think you are missing some key points of this philosophy of light trailering.

You are totally correct that 6 runs versus one run takes a lot more time. Also, you are correct that the 6 Metro runs would use more fuel than the one haul in the truck.

However, for the other 364 days a year, the Metro uses much less fuel. Also, by not owning the truck you are not losing money for insurance, taxes, depreciation, interest (if it's not all paid off). And no truck means no time and money spent on truck maintenance. So that could make up for your lost time there.

So it's a tradeoff, a minor inconvenience on the one day of wood hauling but you get the big pay off on not owning the big truck for the entire year.

For a single load of super heavy stuff, it may make sense to pay a small fee for delivery. You would be saving a huge amount by selling the truck. Then use the Metro/trailer for light hauling. You may have other hauling requirements that you did not mention.

For me, as I posted much earlier in the thread, when I had my '98 Civic, I have towed power equipment, couches, washer/dryer, cellulose insulation bundles for my attic, motorcycle, etc. Nothing more than 1000 lbs. I don't need to haul wood, but I would gladly make multiple trips to avoiding having a money-pit gas-guzzler big truck year-around.

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Old 10-17-2013, 02:45 PM   #289 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
Depends on what you need. If you need to haul loads of stuff on paved roads, a car-towed trailer works fine. If you need to go on rough dirt, it's not so fine.

Then there's the fact that if I tow a trailer behind the pickup, I can haul twice as much per trip :-)

PS: And at $2700 (minus the $1100 I got for the older pickup), my '88 Toyota hardly qualifies as expensive, and is huge only in comparison with my Insight. Though oddly enough, I can haul more with it (both weight & volume) than my friends can with their newish F-250 yuppie pickup.
Lol I'd like to see you pull my backhoe with your Toyota. On serious note I have looking to buy an 80's Toyota pickup to toss in a deutz diesel I have laying in my workshop from a burn down skid steer to have as cool truck to put around in.

Now to add to the thread IMO situations are different for most folks but I really advocate trailers a lot small no monthly cost useful good resale values.. Let's face it most people who buy a user trailer can usually get the same money for it after it has served its purpose
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Old 10-17-2013, 05:35 PM   #290 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Lol I'd like to see you pull my backhoe with your Toyota.
That could be fun to watch, but if one had the need to pull a backhoe on a regular basis then a truck capable of pulling it would be the way to go. If one had no need to pull a large load regularly then a large truck seems like an affectation.

Quote:
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I think keep my truck than trying to haul a trailer behind my Metro. Last load of firewood I picked up was over 6.5K lbs! If my Metro could haul 1K lbs gross that would be over six trips and and would save any fuel what so ever. Even with a full load of firewood I still manage 18-20 mpg in my 1 ton Dodge with a diesel...then there is my value of my time. Now if you are moving light but bulky items from time to time then maybe a trailer is viable.
Having pulled over 3 tons (closer to 5) of wood in the last little while (2000lb tow rated Subaru and multiple trips), by far the largest amount of time dealing with it has been cutting, trimming, chopping, splitting, loading, unloading, and stacking. Even with the extra trips the pulling of the wood was pretty minimal. If I had to go farther or had other large loads to pull then a bigger rig to pull it may have been useful but for the rest of the time (for me anyway) it would be unused capacity. I have a full size pickup that was parked for this wood getting season but used last season. The Subaru pulled more wood than I could fit into the truck, got better mileage while pulling. Plus I had a usable vehicle while the load was waiting for me to process it.

For more than incidental usage a large truck makes sense with your metro for a daily driver.

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