GM Trailering

4 Things to Consider When Trailering

Like to have some fun? Here is some info on trailer capacity for those weekend activities.
When the weekend is fast approaching and you can’t wait to get out to the lake or the mountains it is nice to know to know that your trusty stead in the drive away is ready and waiting to get you and your toys to your destination. As one of the best car dealerships in Lethbridge, here is a list of the basic concerns to help ensure you have a successful adventure.

1) Gross Combined Weight Rating

Knowing the towing capacities of your vehicle is an essential part to having a successful adventure. The key number to know here is the GCWR, the Gross Combined Weight Rating. Simply put, this is the maximum allowed weight of the combination of a loaded up towing vehicle and a loaded up trailer. It is a combination of measurements, the listed curb weight of the vehicle, allowable payload of the vehicle, driver / passenger weights, and the trailer weight. Just because your ½ ton truck has a towing capacity of 6000 pounds and your trailer weighs in at 5000 pounds does not necessarily mean you are good to go. Once you add in kids, food, some toys, and fill your gas tank you could very easily be over 1000 pounds heavier and well past your allowable number.

The GCWR is most commonly listed on sticker on the driver side door. Most manufacturers also publish this information online so a quick google search should also help you find out.

2) Hitch Rating

Once you know the GCWR and are confident in your total weight the next thing to do is make sure your hitch is properly suited for the weight. Here is a quick chart with all the classes of hitches listed.

Towing Capacity

3) What can you tow?

So, with the above numbers of a 6000 pound towing capacity you would be looking at wanting a class 3 or class 4 hitch depending on what you are towing. Now what exactly can you tow?

Trailering Guide

Using the above averages you would most likely want to stick to a 23’ trailer because you need to pack supplies.Toy haulers are also okay but you would need to be careful with how many toys. A 16’ livestock trailer and one horse may be really pushing it when you consider how close it is to maxing out your allowable weights coming in at 5800 lbs.

4) Why is it important?

The list of possible damages occurred by driving an overloaded vehicle is virtually endless and is not limited to just mechanical damage. From engine and transmission damage, to loss of control of vehicles, right up to a fatal motor vehicle accident the potential hazards are truly not worth it.
This is obviously not an exhaustive resource about towing but it does give you some general knowledge that I hope is helpful. If you have more specific questions about towing rates, gearing ratios, trailer sway control, or other towing rated questions feel free to contact our sales or service department to review your setup before you head out. Call or visit us and let us help you find the answers you need.


Trevor Kish
Sales & Lease Consultant

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