NOTE: Towing a trailer involves all major vehicle systems of your Chevy Truck, including powertrain, steering, suspension, tire and brake systems. Easy and safe trailering requires a properly equipped vehicle, additional trailering equipment and an appropriate trailer. It also requires loading both the vehicle and trailer properly, using safe driving techniques, meeting regional legal requirements and following break-in and maintenance schedules. For more information, consult your Owner's Manual, speak to a trailering expert at your Chevrolet dealership or visit our web site at chevy.com. These charts will assist in determining how to best equip your Chevy Truck for trailering. To help you understand the charts, consider these trailering factors:
Torgue: Indicates the strength of the engine. Low-end torque reflects how much force is generated to get your vehicle moving.
Horsepower: Indicates how much work the engine does at a certain engine speed. At mid- to high-engine rpm, it's what keeps you moving at highway speeds.
Axle Ratio: Along with your vehicle's transmission gears, a higher rear axle ratio contributes to how much available torque and horsepower (mechanical leverage) can be applied to the drive wheels for launch and uphill performance. Higher rear axle ratios, however, sacrifice fuel economy when not trailering.
BALL HITCH TRAILERING: There are two types of ball hitches. A weight-carrying hitch consists of a ball and coupler with no means to distribute the hitch weight. It is used primarily for lightweight trailers. Heavier trailers, however, require a weight-distributing hitch, which uses spring bars to transfer some of the hitch weight forward onto the tow vehicle's front axle and rearward onto the trailer¹s axle(s).
FIFTH-WHEEL TRAILERING: Often used with the heaviest trailers, fifth-wheel (or gooseneck) hitches are mounted on a pickup's bed with the trailer's kingpin weight located over or slightly in front of the tow vehicle¹s rear axle.
RGAWR and GVWR: Addition of trailer hitch weight cannot cause vehicle weights to exceed Rear Gross Axle Weight Rating (RGAWR) or Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR). These ratings can be found on the certification label located on the driver door or door frame.
GCWR: The Gross Combination Weight Rating is the total allowable weight of the completely loaded vehicle and trailer. A properly equipped tow vehicle and trailer at the maximum GCWR should be able to accelerate and merge with traffic, climb typical interstate grades at highway speeds, handle the combination on virtually all road surfaces and stop adequately within a reasonable distance.
Maximum Trailer Rating: This rating is determined by subtracting the tow vehicle's weight (curb weight) from the GCWR. When a Base vehicle (curb) weight is used, additional passenger, equipment and cargo weight reduces this rating.
NOTE: Please read this Trailering Caution safety information before trailering with your new truck.
NOTE: The safety steps described here are by no means the only precautions to be taken when trailering. See the Owner's Manual for your Chevy Silverado for additional guidelines and trailering tips.
Trailering Caution. If you don't use the correct equipment and drive properly, you can lose control of your vehicle when you pull a trailer. For example, if the trailer is too heavy, your vehicle brakes may be less effective. You and your passengers could be seriously injured. Pull a trailer only after you have taken the following steps.
Trailer Brakes. If your trailer weighs more than 2,000 lbs. loaded, then it must have its own adequate brakes. Be sure to read and follow the instructions for the trailer brake controller so that it is installed, adjusted and maintained properly. • Don't tap into your vehicle's brake system if the trailer's brake system will use more than 0.02 cu. in. of fluid from your vehicle's master cylinder. If it does, neither braking system will work well. You could even lose your vehicle brakes. • The trailer brake parts must be able to take 3,000 psi of pressure. If not, the trailer brake system must not be used with your vehicle. If everything checks out thus far, have a qualified individual make the brake fluid tap at the master cylinder port that sends fluid to the rear brakes. Don't use copper tubing because it will bend and ultimately break. Use only double-walled steel brake tubing. • If you'll be towing a trailer that, when loaded, will weigh more than 5,000 lbs.,* be sure to use a frame-mounted, weight-distributing hitch and sway control of the proper size. This equipment is very important for proper vehicle loading and good handling when you're driving.
Hitches. It's important to have the correct hitch equipment. Crosswinds, large trucks going by and rough roads are just a few reasons why you'll need the right hitch. Here are some rules to follow:
Silverado Pickup models can be equipped with a fifth-wheel or gooseneck
*7,500 lbs. on 2500HD and 3500 models. Maximum trailer rating may be less based upon powertrain combinations.