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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2017, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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Towing 2K miles with new truck

Hi,

I'm new to towing but have learned a lot recently after reading many of the post in this forum.

I have a 2017 CM with a 3/1 pro comp lift/level. The truck now has only about 1170 miles so technically it is "broken in" and good go to for towing.

I have not towed before but am considering traveling with a 24' trailer that is about 4k lbs dry. The trip is about 2500 miles round trip and there of course will be hills and probably pretty good ones at that.
Two passengers including myself and picking up a third when I get to Oregon (start in Arizona). And we will have an 80 pound Boxer.
Weight with us four mammals: about 730 pounds plus some luggage. Trip total: 2500 miles (that will triple what it on there now ); total days: 9 days; experience: none.

Exciting trip: possibly (pray in a good way).

My gut tells me that maybe I should not tow just yet since the truck is just barely broken in. Any thoughts?
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2017, 05:51 PM
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OK, Who is feeding the Boxer? Good Grief. LOL

Advice: keep speed down, Enjoy the ride. Carry two (2) trailer spare tires. Never try to tow in 6th gear. Tranny will overheat. When you hit the grades, find a happy incline speed even if it 35 MPH all the way to the top. If your truck has E rated 10 ply tires, you don't need nearly as much air as people think. More air, rougher ride. There is a formula. Trailer tires? Air them up. No body riding in it anyway.

Safe travels.


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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 01:25 PM
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Started towing my Jeep JKU at around 750 miles on the clock. No problems. There are people how have bought new trucks off the lot hooked up and gone. They had no problems.
You'll be fine
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by gdhugh View Post
Never try to tow in 6th gear. Tranny will overheat..

I don't agree with this. I put my tundra in D with tow haul on and let it do what it is going to do. Between where I live and Glamis the freeway is relatively flat and pulling my toyhauler the trans will shit into 6th if conditions are right and the trans temp does just fine, even thinking about touching the throttle will bring the truck out of 6th so there really is no way possible to hold 6th long enough that the trans would overheat.

I'm not judging...I'm just sayin


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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-16-2017, 11:16 PM
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Originally Posted by l1tech View Post
I don't agree with this. I put my tundra in D with tow haul on and let it do what it is going to do. Between where I live and Glamis the freeway is relatively flat and pulling my toyhauler the trans will shit into 6th if conditions are right and the trans temp does just fine, even thinking about touching the throttle will bring the truck out of 6th so there really is no way possible to hold 6th long enough that the trans would overheat.
Hopefully someone more knowledgeable than me will chime in, but I believe the shifting into and out of 6th is the cause of overheating. Although if you're constantly monitoring your trans temp, that should be the gold standard.

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 07:53 AM
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I don't agree with this. I put my tundra in D with tow haul on and let it do what it is going to do. Between where I live and Glamis the freeway is relatively flat and pulling my toyhauler the trans will shit into 6th if conditions are right and the trans temp does just fine, even thinking about touching the throttle will bring the truck out of 6th so there really is no way possible to hold 6th long enough that the trans would overheat.
Well, Mine did. Flat road. Hwy 19 south Florida. Running about 63MPH in 5th bumped it to 6th and within minutes temp started climbing. It tripped the warning light before I notices it. Back to 5th and started to cool back immediately. No doubt has to to with fluid velocity through the cooler.
I would have to assume some conditions are different between yours and mine. Perhaps the weight of my toyhauler (12K) or the towing speed. Obviously something is different.


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I tow in 5th gear. If I'm coming up to a hill I shift into 4th before I start to lose momentum. If the hill is pretty steep I shift into 3rd. I won't let the truck go below 2k rpm's. Mileage is not a concern because it sucks already towing. The only time I might let it shift into 6th is when I'm on a slight down hill. But if the down hill is steep I will use the motor to hold me back.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 08:49 AM
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New truck and over 1000 miles on it? Tow away. Hell, it will help break that beast in even better. And FYI, "break in" refers to a whole lot more than the engine.

Towing in 6th gear will NOT overheat the trans and its darn hard to force the trans to stay in 6th when towing heavy, so I have no idea where this is coming from.

Use Tow/haul mode. It will put the trans in 6th towing at MAX under low load conditions. Let the truck do what its programmed to do while towing. Some season guys can do better than tow/haul and I as well use sport shift to lock 3rd or 4th at times, but there is no proven benefit doing so.

Speaking of letting the truck do its thing...the engine makes power up high and seeing 3000-4000k RPM will be common. You might see 5k driving hard up mountain grades which in some situations you can avoid. Holding 3000-4000k rpm all day long is no problem at all.

Also, do not fear cruise control on the Interstate. Not for mountains and city stretches. Some will claim Toyota says not to use cruise while towing, and its the far from fact. Toyota statement is cautioning drivers using cruise while towing, just like they warn you for a million other things.

The dry trailer weight of 4,000lbs is ok for a beginner towing with the Tundra. I would not go heavier or longer. Use a good WDH with 1000lb bars no less even if your tongue weight is only 600lbs as it gives you a little buffer and more effective weight transfer with no ill effects.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by gdhugh View Post
Well, Mine did. Flat road. Hwy 19 south Florida. Running about 63MPH in 5th bumped it to 6th and within minutes temp started climbing. It tripped the warning light before I notices it. Back to 5th and started to cool back immediately. No doubt has to to with fluid velocity through the cooler.
I would have to assume some conditions are different between yours and mine. Perhaps the weight of my toyhauler (12K) or the towing speed. Obviously something is different.
I've had 3 2nd gen Tundras and have towed the same trailer with all of them and have never had an issue. I10 heading west out of Phoenix has some pretty good flat long stretches, towing speed around 65 mpg with a ~7000 lb trailer, you have to hold your tongue just right and make several offerings to the gods to even get the truck to think about wanting to shift into 6th and if it does you really have to work at keeping it in 6th. One thing I really hated on all 3 trucks was the trans shift strategy while in t/h mode. The way the truck decides to upshift seems a mystery. You could be driving perfectly flat ground at 60 mph and the truck would be in 5th gear and then 5 miles later the truck would shift into 6th for no rhyme or reason although conditions never changed. On flat ground 98% of the time my trucks would never go above 5th gear even if you tried, I wonder how it's possible that you can makes yours shift into 6th and actually maintain it to the point that the transmission starts overheating. Towing a 12k sail at 63 mph, even on flat ground, means that you are deep into the throttle. I wonder how your truck manages to stay in 6th.

I'm not judging...I'm just sayin


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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 12:18 PM
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Originally Posted by l1tech View Post
I've had 3 2nd gen Tundras and have towed the same trailer with all of them and have never had an issue. I10 heading west out of Phoenix has some pretty good flat long stretches, towing speed around 65 mpg with a ~7000 lb trailer, you have to hold your tongue just right and make several offerings to the gods to even get the truck to think about wanting to shift into 6th and if it does you really have to work at keeping it in 6th. One thing I really hated on all 3 trucks was the trans shift strategy while in t/h mode. The way the truck decides to upshift seems a mystery. You could be driving perfectly flat ground at 60 mph and the truck would be in 5th gear and then 5 miles later the truck would shift into 6th for no rhyme or reason although conditions never changed. On flat ground 98% of the time my trucks would never go above 5th gear even if you tried, I wonder how it's possible that you can makes yours shift into 6th and actually maintain it to the point that the transmission starts overheating. Towing a 12k sail at 63 mph, even on flat ground, means that you are deep into the throttle. I wonder how your truck manages to stay in 6th.
I understand your being a bit confounded about it. Maybe a bit more details.
When I first started towing this load with the Tundra, I quickly learned that putting her in "S" mode and TH active and, under the right conditions, flat road, I could stick her in 5th and avoid downshifts for long stretches of highway. A slight incline will result in a torque converter unlock if I only apply slight accelerator force and greater inclines cause downshifts to 4th with slightly more accelerator force. Now, I don't mean hill climbing and trying to maintain speed. I learned from many years of driving gas powered RVs, to not try and maintain speed. It cost gas and stresses the tranny. I typically loose 5 to 7 mph on an incline without need to downshift. More than that and I apply enough to go ahead and induce a downshift.
Back to the point, In this instance down Hyw 19 south, the road is super flat. I was running about 2200-2300 rpm when it occurred to me to try 6th gear so while in "S" mode, I bumped it up and eased off the accelerator slightly. It shifted up and dropped to about 61mph and just under 2K rpm. I added slight accelerator so as to climb back to my previous 63mph and held in there for what I think was 10 minutes before I noticed the red light and the temp gauge almost pegged. I bumped it back to 5th and slowed slightly while watching the temp return to normal. I surmised that fluid flow was not sufficient and still believe that to be the case.

This is why I advise to not try and tow in 6th gear. Now, to your point, If someone tries to tow in 6th gear and the result is frequent up and down shifts, I believe my advice is still valid.


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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 01:24 PM
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Sport mode and Tow Haul are two mutually exclusive things. Sport mode uses completely different, and MUCH simpler shift logic, even from regular Drive. There is no grade logic for going up and down hills. It shifts based on significantly fewer parameters, mostly just throttle angle, speed, and current gear position. Putting the trans in S makes pressing the Tow Haul button completely useless, it literally does not work in S mode, even though for some reason the light will come on anyway. Drive and TH are the recommended settings for towing anything heavy. TH changes torque converter logic, shift maps, trans line pressure, and throttle tip in, all to make towing easier on the truck and on the driver. S mode does not do any of these things, regardless of whether or not you press the TH button, it completely overrides it. Let the transmission shift (in Tow Haul), it has six gears for a reason.

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Originally Posted by riccnick View Post
Sport mode and Tow Haul are two mutually exclusive things. Sport mode uses completely different, and MUCH simpler shift logic, even from regular Drive. There is no grade logic for going up and down hills. It shifts based on significantly fewer parameters, mostly just throttle angle, speed, and current gear position. Putting the trans in S makes pressing the Tow Haul button completely useless, it literally does not work in S mode, even though for some reason the light will come on anyway. Drive and TH are the recommended settings for towing anything heavy. TH changes torque converter logic, shift maps, trans line pressure, and throttle tip in, all to make towing easier on the truck and on the driver. S mode does not do any of these things, regardless of whether or not you press the TH button, it completely overrides it. Let the transmission shift (in Tow Haul), it has six gears for a reason.
I did not see anyone stating or implying T/H and Sport mode were related.

None the less, its good info for the OP.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 03:47 PM
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Advice: Get yourself a https://www.amazon.com/Trailer-Aid-T.../dp/B000I4JPZE.
Makes changing a flat tire on a loaded trailer a breeze. Last time I had a flat on my loaded car hauler (in the rain) it took me less than 10 minutes to change the flat and that included alomst 5 minutes it tool me to find my breaker bar and torque wrench. Just last week I used my TrailerAid when I greased the wheel bearings in the EZ Lube hubs on my trailer. Sure as hell beat hauling out my floor jack, metal plates, etc.

If you have an Android Tablet and/or phone you might consider getting the Torque App and using it to monitor your Tundra when towing. There are a number of Torque App threads on the forum if you are interested in this, Just do a search. I use it to monitor my Tundra's RPMs, Coolant Temp, Tranny Temp and Torque Converter Temp among other things when towing.

As far as Tranny Temps go, I usually use S4 or on rare occasions S3, etc to lock out the higher gears on grades (ie 5th & 6th). My tranny never pegged the gauge or lit the light like yours. However, I have noticed that the Torque App I use when towing does indicate that using S4 or S3 when climbing a grade REDUCES both the Tranny & especially the Torque Converter temps I monitor by 20-30+ DEGREES. Personally, I prefer the lower tranny temps as opposed to the much higher temps that I have seen running "D" with Tow Haul mode. Be advised that I haul between 5-6K pounds when towing my car hauler.

Best of luck with your trip, Don't forget to pack a good breaker bar, proper size sockets for the lug nuts on your Tundra and Trailer (since they are probably different sizes like mine are) and a good torque wrench that can handle 100-150 ft lbs.

Have a great trip when you go and be safe.

Charlie

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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-17-2017, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by riccnick View Post
Sport mode and Tow Haul are two mutually exclusive things. Sport mode uses completely different, and MUCH simpler shift logic, even from regular Drive. There is no grade logic for going up and down hills. It shifts based on significantly fewer parameters, mostly just throttle angle, speed, and current gear position. Putting the trans in S makes pressing the Tow Haul button completely useless, it literally does not work in S mode, even though for some reason the light will come on anyway. Drive and TH are the recommended settings for towing anything heavy. TH changes torque converter logic, shift maps, trans line pressure, and throttle tip in, all to make towing easier on the truck and on the driver. S mode does not do any of these things, regardless of whether or not you press the TH button, it completely overrides it. Let the transmission shift (in Tow Haul), it has six gears for a reason.
I can't speak to a 2010 truck, but tow/haul mode can definitely can be activated and operative while in S mode in my 2017. I always tow (6,000 boat and trailer) in S mode and you can certainly appreciate the difference in throttle response and shifting when tow/haul is activated vs. off.

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-18-2017, 09:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RinconVTR View Post
I did not see anyone stating or implying T/H and Sport mode were related.

None the less, its good info for the OP.
I know, my point was that it was mentioned that towing in S6 overheats the transmission. My intentions were to explain why. When in sport mode, (with TH on or off) truck isn't doing all the things it would be doing if you were in Drive and TH was on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AZBoatHauler View Post
I can't speak to a 2010 truck, but tow/haul mode can definitely can be activated and operative while in S mode in my 2017. I always tow (6,000 boat and trailer) in S mode and you can certainly appreciate the difference in throttle response and shifting when tow/haul is activated vs. off.
I definitely cannot speak for the 2014+ models. However, I still maintain that even if the throttle map changes with S mode and TH, that the torque converter lockup strategy, and of course, the shift strategy most likely aren't changing. Both of those things have a BIG impact on keeping the trans temps down.

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