How much can a 1500 5.3L engine haul?

Asked by dmkaczynski Mar 29, 2012 at 11:11 PM about the 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 2LT Extended Cab LB RWD

Question type: General

I have a 2002 Chevy Surburban 5.3L engine that at 152,000 miles I pulled at 3/horse trailor (3,000 lbs) with 2-3 horses (2000-3000 lbs) total weigh 6,000 lbs.  At 153,500 miles, my transmission failed.  My husband and I replaced with a new transmission good for 100,000 miles.  I am now nervous to haul with my Surburban.  I was looking at buying used Chevy Silverado 5.3L 4X4, but I don't see a advantage in this purchase.  Would I get better hauling with Chevy Silverado, or just keep using my Chevy surburban?  Then I was advised in purchasing a bigger engine, e.g. Chevy Silverado 2500HD> What are your thoughts?

7 Answers


First off, 153k is a quite normal life of a transmission even without towing heavy loads. So the life of your transmission sounds normal, if not above average. Also, if you're talking about towing, not hauling (hauling is typically used when you're talking about what you put in the bed of your truck or back of your suburban), then 6,000lbs should be about your maximum towing capacity with that setup. The advantage to buying a pickup as opposed to an SUV is typically a slighter higher max. payload and towing capacity even with the same engine (this has more to do with weight distribution and the tow packages available). A 2500HD would certainly do the job if you get the diesel engine, but for only 6,000lbs that's really an overkill. Your current setup sounds very typical for your towing capacity, but if you wanted a little more giddy- up when towing then the 1500HD with a 6.0L gasoline engine would probably be a better option. Hope this helps!

17 people found this helpful.

Also, the type of differential you have is important. I wanna say it's a 3.43 or 3.55 differential most likely in your suburban (don't quote me on that).. a 3.73 is best for towing heavy loads

10 people found this helpful.

I have a 05 Chevy Silverado Z71 4X4 Towing Package. My truck has 110,000 miles when I started towing a 30' Pull behind trailer. I got the truck set up at the RV Dealer with a Stabaliser and Load Leveler Package Along with Electric Brakes. Would not recommend towing a close to 10,000lbs trailer loaded w/o doing this. The rear went after towing across country many mountains. I was foolish not to check the rear fluid BEFORE I left. I needed a whole container when I started hearing a strange noise, but it was too late. $1084.00 at a Alabama honest great dealership and back on the road! I'm still on the fence with how long I'm going to keep this going I'm at 117,600 miles and currently I just made it up the I-25 Pass with the motor screaming at 5,000rpm going 40mph BUT many others were struggling with there tow loads too!

16 people found this helpful.

well i would recommend, because i am an expert in toeing at nissan hq, that your silverado 1500 should only be used to tow about 1000 pounds because it is a chevy and therefore is unreliable. You should sell it and buy a furd F-two fiddy

8 people found this helpful.

What is the total gross towing wieght for a 2000 Silverado 3 door long bed?

11 people found this helpful.

oh shut up! my silverado can tow 9000 [ounds!

12 people found this helpful.

My 2018 Sierra 5.3 with a 3.73 rear HD towing package drives like a dream and tows my 27 foot TT effortlessly. Total weight all in ( passengers, bikes, stuff) just under 7000 lbs. Heading for the finger lakes soon and a 900 mile run. Can’t wait to get on the road.

2 people found this helpful.

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