I'm hoping that someone can give some advise on what to do next. I'm trying
to get better gas mileage, currently it's averaging about 14mpg city driving
~ 20 miles each day. I'm also trying to get my truck set up to pull a
camper, (approx 16' travel trailer or tent trailer). I know the max towing
capacity for this truck is listed as 5200 lbs. I intend to be below that
depending on which trailer I can borrow/rent but the travel trailer could be
pushing 4500 lbs easily when loaded.
The few mods I've done have made a slight difference in mileage and in the
seat-of-my-pants-dyno. I wish it had more low end torque. The engine seems
to grunt and rpms are slow to climb until about 2500 and then pulls pretty
hard and rpms climb fast.
The first likely place I would venture out with this rig is a fairly steep
climb/descent. I'll only be going about 40-45 miles but a 15 mile stretch
climbs ~ 5000 ft.
This truck has the 4.3L V-6, 3:42 gears, stock tires and rims.
The front of the airbox has been cut off and K&N filter installed
Modified throttle plate (about half of deflector removed with Dremel)
160° thermostat installed
Trailer brake controller, a Tekonsha PRIMUS, currently in progress of being
a) I've thought about a cat-back exhaust, both Magnaflow or Flowmaster are
both carried at the local exhaust shop.
b) I've considered Hypertech Programmer but not convinced it's worth the
c) Will the engine/transmission handle this with a 3500-4000lb trailer in
d) Thought about Airlift bags to prevent rear-end squat... I need to check
the truck with a realistic load in the back to simulate a trailer and loaded
with equipment/supplies/passengers. I already know that a load of gravel
will push it down to the bumpers.
e) I know that 3:73 or 4:10 gears would be better for towing and possibly
for mileage but can't afford to replace both ends so I'm leaving it alone.
Am I progressing on the right path? Can anyone answer the
questions/concerns I have? Any thoughts on which way to go next?