Monday, February 28, 2011
Preparing for the Long Haul
Warm sunny days means vacations or weekend getaways, and many families take to the road with a camper in tow. Whether you are towing a camper, trailer or boat regardless of the size, it means you will want to take steps to make sure the vehicle you are towing with is ready for the haul.
Modifications and Towing Packages
If you are willing to make some modifications to your tow vehicle, you can protect it from the stresses of towing and you could also see more engine power. If your tow vehicle is still under warranty, making modifications could void your manufacturer’s warranty. Be sure to check your warranty and with your dealer before you make any modifications. Another point to consider is that adding performance components may give you more engine power but should not exceed your vehicle’s factory towing capacity. Modifications may increase your vehicle’s margin of safety, but not its capabilities.
If you are purchasing a new vehicle specifically for towing, consider adding the optional “Towing” or “Camping” packages that are offered. These options are installed by the automaker and will be covered under the factory warranty. If your towing will be primarily on pavement, it is recommended to buy a 2WD model instead of a 4WD that are heavier and have a lower towing capability in comparison to 2WD.
Springs and Shocks
Heavy-duty springs are considered an aftermarket improvement, but are worth the investment if you do a lot of towing. Find a reputable spring and suspension shop to have the heavy-duty springs installed for rear or front suspensions.
It’s also a good idea to outfit your vehicle with the best shock absorbers available for towing. Good shocks will keep your vehicle stable and reduce sway should you encounter potholes or rough pavement.
Upgrade Your Lubricants
Towing can cause increased stress on your vehicle and run hotter as a result. Anything you can do to keep those temperatures down will extend the life of your tow vehicle. One of the simplest and inexpensive ways to prepare your tow vehicle is to change and upgrade your fluids and lubricants.
High performance synthetic lubrication company Royal Purple offers several products that will alleviate stress and extend the intervals of maintenance. Royal Purple’s Radiator Coolant Additive Purple Ice is a perfect product for your tow vehicle. This synthetic, radiator coolant additive reduces engine heat by reducing the surface tension of the radiator fluids for improved heat transfer. It also provides additional protection against rust, corrosion and, erosion and can be used in diesel and gas engines. Royal Purple also offers oil filters, motor oil, gear oil and transmission fluid for manual and automatic transmissions.