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Old 09-19-2018, 04:53 PM   #1
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New to RV Tow Question

I am in the market to purchase a RV. I have a 2018 GMC Terrain Denali with tow package. My Terrain tow capacity is 3500. I have been researching to see if my Terrain can safely tow the RV I would like to get. Any insight would be very helpful.

Terrain 2.0 L Denali W tow package

Curb Weight: 3756
GVWR: 4850
GCVWR: 7694
Payload: 925
Tow Capacity: 3500

Jayco Jay Flight SLX7

UVW: 2935
GVWR: 3750
Hitch Weight:305

My math is below it looks to be over if the trailer is max weight but if I tow around dry weight I may be ok? Thoughts?

Estimated Payload
Total payload (minus hitch weight): 550

Available Payload: 70
New GVW: 4611
New GCVW: 8056
Towing Capacity 3500

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Old 09-19-2018, 05:19 PM   #2
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You can't trust listed UVW, actual weights are almost always higher, depending on axle location and trailer weight distribution you will need to know what the actual tongue weight will be. You should have a WDH for safety and that is part of the tongue weight, they can weigh 80-100# so that reduces total tongue weight from trailer.

You could tow with the Denali, but you won't be taking much payload, no water in the tanks, little payload in the back of the Denali before you would be overweight. Two passengers at 350# would have to be naked and no luggage.


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Old 09-19-2018, 05:49 PM   #3
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Would you cross a rope bridge that said it could hold exactly your weight. That is kind of what you are proposing.

As your tow vehicle ages your max is challenged by wear on brakes, engine, springs, etc. A safety margin is a good idea. And like said above you may overload by accident, stuff accumulates. Adding batteries, solar, 2nd propane tank, water for dry camping, extra food for long stays, extra clothes for changing weather, better mattress, etc.

Good luck and safe travels.
2017 SLX 195RB
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:58 PM   #4
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no. You will NOT be happy. Did you factor in the weight of the propane tank and the battery?
Propane tank and battery weight is not included in hitch weight.
2012 Honda Ridgeline
2016 195 RB

Both well used. Now up to 250 nights camping and 70,000 miles on the TT since purchase.
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:43 PM   #5
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Welcome to JOF

IMO I believe you will find that your Terrain isn't an ideal match for the SLX 7 174BH (has same weights you posted).

It's best to start your TT search with minimal guess work........,

Take your Terrain to a CAT scale and weigh it under loaded conditions (full fuel, passengers, and cargo). A CAT scale weigh-in is about $9 and takes 3 minutes....., just place your TV axles on the two platforms and push the button.

Subtract your CAT scale weight from your TV's GVWR of 4,850lbs......., the remaining weight is your actual "available" payload capacity. The available payload capacity is the weight you have for a TT's "loaded" tongue weight (?) and hitch weight (40lbs).

The 2019 SLX 7 174BH will have an actual "as-shipped" weight around 3,000lbs (yellow sticker on side of TT).

Hypothetical 'conservative' 174BH loaded weights: (3,000lbs UVW) + (50lbs Dealer-battery, etc.) + (350lbs cargo) + (no fluids) = 3,400lbs

Recommended loaded tongue weight range @ 3,400lbs gross: 340lbs (10%) - 510lbs (15%) of gross. IMO for enhanced TV handling of the single axle 174BH one would want a loaded tongue weight closer to 13% minimum (442lbs @ 3,400lbs gross).

Just food for thought.


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Old 09-20-2018, 01:10 PM   #6
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While it's always best to have actual loaded weights, when I dint know any better I always assume that my trailer will weight its full gvw rating. The point of trailers is that they hold your gear, and so they are often loaded right up while travelling.

Make that assumption and see how comfortable you are....
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Old 10-01-2018, 07:28 AM   #7
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Plus keep in mind those ratings donít assume you are pulling a box through the air. Think the numbers as rated to pull a flat trailer with some bricks on it, not a huge shoebox.

The wind forces on the camper, frontal, and side forces (ie sway) will further add to the loading on your suspension.

My wisdom says you need to go lighter on the trailer, or get a bigger Vehicle. Popup might be the way to go.

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