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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 02-17-2013, 09:46 PM   #1
Crazy Tex
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Default Question about a new tow rig

Without getting into political theories on the who, why, and how... the economy is screwed up right now.
I have cut back and made choices that seemed like a smart idea at the time one of which was to sell my 07 Chevrolet crew cab and buy a 99 Durango for lower payments. The repair costs ate me alive... now its the fuel prices again. I do way too much driving to have a gas hog. The Durango is a 5.9L 4x4 so 13-14mpg is avg.

To my question... I am now looking for something a bit more economical. Looking at the 6 cylinder equinox and small vehicle like that, and some of the Envoys and Trailblazers.. something that gets 20+ MPG.

Can you even tow a decent size cooker or 5x10 trailer with wood behind one of the little SUV's? I have to have room, dependability, and decent fuel mileage. I take long trips so a compact truck might not fit the bill (although I did seee a 2wd Toyota crew cab PreRunner for a decent price...not sure about the mileage 4.0 would get me?)

Didn't know where to put this, but since it does involve pulling my cooker I felt like it was Que related.

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Unread 02-17-2013, 09:54 PM   #2
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Wouldn't recommend it... the fuel efficiency will be lost, the towing capacity is greatly reduced, and the wear and tear on a smaller vehicle would be against you. Its the load vs horsepower you need to consider to balance. More exactly - its the torque which gets the trailer rollin'.

Went in the opposite direction... my 2007 Chevy Duramax gets better fuel economy with a larger 20 ft. trailer than either a Yukon Denali XL or Avalanche with a smaller 16 ft. trailer.

If you are considering towing on a regular basis or long distances... don't compromise its needs.
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Unread 02-17-2013, 09:58 PM   #3
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That's a lot to consider. Maybe upgrade to a diesel?? Just a thought. Not sure what diesel prices are like by you. Get decent fuel economy (better than V8 anyway) and still be able to haul just about anything.

Maybe check out Frontier from Nissan. I've got an 04 and though its only got a 4 banger in it I can haul a bed load of split wood with little issues. Never towed anything with it though. I would imagine a V6 Frontier (SL trim) with 4x4 and towing package would get the job done. Of course with any towing, it would be at the expense of fuel economy.
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Unread 02-17-2013, 10:03 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQ Bandit View Post
Went in the opposite direction... my 2007 Chevy Duramax gets better fuel economy with a larger 20 ft. trailer than either a Yukon Denali XL or Avalanche with a smaller 16 ft. trailer.
What the heck, I'll second the motion on the diesel. Go Duramax w/ auto Allison tranny or go Cummins with a 5 or 6 speed manual. Heard way too many horror stories about the Ram auto tranny.

Don't even touch a Power stroke. You will regret it till the day you sell it.
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Unread 02-17-2013, 10:12 PM   #5
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I own a 2002 power stroke. Many times a year folks offer to buy it from me.
Had a cam sensor replaced and a water pump. Other than that I got 12 years out of the batteries. Gets 19 mpg on the freeway below 2000 rpm.
The newer ones are junk per my son. He is an International Truck master mechanic.
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Unread 02-17-2013, 10:13 PM   #6
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Default Re: Question about a new tow rig

I would LOVE a diesel truck.. I think I forgot to mention that I am on a very tight, almost invisible budget. The farthest I would tow it might be 15-20 miles..at most. If I was getting a large load of wood I'll borrow a pickup from a friend. Most of the time I'll be towing less than 5 miles.
I guess I should look at mid size stuff... which will still get better mileage than the Durango but I have to watch out that the payment and insurance costs don't equal what I'm spending already on fuel.

Any Brethren in the auto auctions? Any other suggestions.. I'm open for whatever as long as it saves me $ at the end of the month and fills my needs dependably.

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Unread 02-17-2013, 10:20 PM   #7
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We had an old square body 99 I think, power stroke that had 300k miles on it before we finally sold it. The only things we ever had to replace were ujoints. It was the old style 7.3 with all iron engine and was not intercooled. Man what I would give to have that exact truck brand new. 18 mpg average. All the newer diesels IMO are a joke. Get a toyota and just put gas in it, simple as that. Before I got my tundra, I had a 01 Tacoma v6 brand new and it would haul my 72 Camaro on a 16 ft low boy no problem. Stopping was always the problem lol. That's why I upgraded to my tundra in 04. Will drive it till the wheels fall off. 159k miles and never been in the shop. 15-19 mpg trip average
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Unread 02-17-2013, 10:25 PM   #8
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Default Re: Question about a new tow rig

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmoney7269 View Post
We had an old square body 99 I think, power stroke that had 300k miles on it before we finally sold it. The only things we ever had to replace were ujoints. It was the old style 7.3 with all iron engine and was not intercooled. Man what I would give to have that exact truck brand new. 18 mpg average. All the newer diesels IMO are a joke. Get a toyota and just put gas in it, simple as that. Before I got my tundra, I had a 01 Tacoma v6 brand new and it would haul my 72 Camaro on a 16 ft low boy no problem. Stopping was always the problem lol. That's why I upgraded to my tundra in 04. Will drive it till the wheels fall off. 159k miles and never been in the shop. 15-19 mpg trip average
What mileage did you get from the Tacoma?

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Unread 02-17-2013, 11:11 PM   #9
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I've got a 2000 F-150 (reg. cab short bed) 2WD with the 4.6 liter V8 & a 3.55 rear end... At 55 mph. it gets 20 mpg. (EPA estimate 17) Covered bed helps. That little engine will PULL.
(and it's going strong after 215,000 miles.) My girlfriends Focus got 25 mpg + ... until she hit 95,000 miles... Then she had to spend nearly $3000 on electronics and fuel injection repairs. I can buy a lot of gas for $3000. The Toyota suggestion was a good one... If I weren't 6' 3" and 270 lbs. I'd get a Tacoma.
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Unread 02-17-2013, 11:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazy Tex View Post
I guess I should look at mid size stuff...
I guess my suggestion from earlier of a Frontier fits well then. When the bank account allows, I am going to step up to a newer Frontier with 4WD and a V6. For short trips, like you mentioned, you will benefit from the V6 power when towing and still get good fuel economy when driving without the trailer. Serious option to consider..
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Unread 02-18-2013, 03:28 AM   #11
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I have an equalnox, fuel mileage not so good, however I have never towed with it, but it is nice vehicle.
.for BBQ I use diesel power stroke...I am going down the road about 22,000 pounds between truck camper towing 25 ft bbq trailer and flyingass the powerstroke running 75 to 80 mph getting 12
however initial cost and think about what you are towing and how much should determine vehicle...chevy or ford will get er done longer than the dodge will, however since heaper initally, you still have to look at all 3..
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Unread 02-18-2013, 05:16 AM   #12
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I would go diesel too. If you are pulling a lot the higher cost of fuel vs the mileage you will get while towing will offset. Go Chevy!!!! I HAVE TO DROP $4000 on my FARKING FORD this week. It's a 2004F-350 crew cab 4x4 with 6.0 "powerbroke". Having to replace headgasket and delete the EGR relocate oil cooler. FARKING FARK!!! Only 107,000 miles!!
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Unread 02-18-2013, 07:13 AM   #13
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I used to pull a 6X12 enclosed trailer loaded with tools and 2 dirt bikes with a 4 cylinder ford ranger. Sure the fuel mileage went way down but it did the job!
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Unread 02-18-2013, 07:13 AM   #14
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How much do you tow compared to everyday driving? If the strain on a small efficient SUV wouldn't be too great then that's how I'd go. You won't be able to find a diesel I don't think for any kind of reasonable price unless it has ALOT of miles on it, at which little small repairs may eat you up.

I know that if I towed only once a month or even twice a month on the weekend and it wasn't for more than 50 miles then I would go with something like an Equinox. The Ford Escape are nice vehicles too and I am pretty sure you can get them in a manual which would be great for towing. My brother in law has a Escape and he loves it.
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Unread 02-18-2013, 07:42 AM   #15
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How much does your rig weigh? My mom has an Envoy, and I've never towed with it, but for 10 miles, I wouldn't think it'd be too bad.
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