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Tow in OD or not to tow in OD?

Discussion in 'Tow Rig Forum' started by wingnutt550, March 7, 2009.

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  1. wingnutt550

    wingnutt550 New Member

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    Hello, I have a 1996 4 door 4 X 4 w/4.0l and auto trans. I have a couple of questions and they all relate to tow capacity. First the axle code on my vin. plate stated it is a "45", the owners manual does not show this code but it says this vehicle with the "46"/3:73 ratio it is rated for 5000lbs. Second I have purchased a boat and have weighed it and the trailer. They came to 3400lbs, so i figure when we are loaded to go on vacation my GCVW should be under 9500lbs. My last question, I live in florida and other than highway over passes it is flat here. My transmission code is "T" and the owners manual states with the 4R44E/4R55E/4R70W transmission you may wish to operate with O/D off in hilly terrain then shift back into O/D when practical to promote power cooling and fuel economy. I have also added a 4 pass oil cooler and a class III type hitch and Rancho coil over shocks. T:exp:hank you for feed back, Steve
     
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  3. Sams01XplrSprt

    Sams01XplrSprt Southern Cali Explorer

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    welcome wing aka steve
     
  4. HahnsB2

    HahnsB2 Active Member

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    With that much weight I wouldn't tow in OD at all.
     
  5. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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  6. TheJackal

    TheJackal Well-Known Member

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    You may want to wait for some of our transmission experts to chime in, but I always say never tow in overdrive.
     
  7. blue_goose

    blue_goose Active Member

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    I would leave it off. I doubt the gas mileage will be better with it on cause the engine has to work so much harder and its jsut less stress on everything. My uncle has a 06 with the 300 horse V8 living in Orlando and he pulls a Mastercraft ski boat that is about that weight and althouhg its the 6 speed it is never in od and sometimes drops to 4th gear, just to give you a vague idea. My 02 4.0 3.55 has trouble staying in od on any hills pulling a hobie 16 and if I hooked up a 3500 lb boat I would definitly leave off the od.
     
  8. briwayjones

    briwayjones Manual Master

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    a big fat no
     
  9. CrazyAlaskan

    CrazyAlaskan Active Member

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    I had a 91 Chevy half ton with a 4.3L V6 and I killed hte tranny cause I towed a trailer round trip 300 miles with the Over drive on ( I didnt know till it was to late) and killed it. I would'nt risk using the OD on ever again!
     
  10. Stic-o

    Stic-o Elite Movie Star Elite Explorer

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    I use the OD on my 150 when towing, but only on flat ground. when I get to hilly areas or I hear the trans shifting alot I take it out. It does get better milage with it on. I also use Cruise control alot when towing.;)
     
  11. Gatorblazer

    Gatorblazer Active Member

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    thats the key to the whole towing with OD thing. Anytime you constantly shifting in and out of OD you will have issues
     
  12. jrford

    jrford Well-Known Member

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    I have a v8 with 3.55 rear and when i tow my 1000lb boat, which is only 30% of the tow capacity i can roll with the OD. When i tow something close to my Max the O/D is off.
     
    Last edited: March 12, 2009
  13. omgyouresexy

    omgyouresexy New Member

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    I'm getting a Jonboat from my wife's grandfather and had been debating about adding a hitch or using the bumper. I know the Jonboats only weight a coule hundred lbs... and I would guess the same for the motor and trailer, so I figure I'm looking at about 1000 lbs or slightly less.

    If I tow this baby around, you think it would be in my best interest to turn overdrive off? I wouldn't mind, I'm just curious.

    Also, maybe someone could let me know if my weight estimation is correct.
     
  14. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

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    The V6 transmission is the weakest in Explorers, and OD is a thin band in any trans. Don't put too much pressure on those. Towing on dead flat or downhill is no issue, if the throttle is almost nothing. As soon as you need say 20% throttle, you are stressing the band, pushing the limit. Two things may happen, either a little slippage, and/or extra heat is made.

    Many people do fine saying never OD to tow, and the fuel mileage isn't worth risking. I'd avoid using OD unless there is virtually no throttle required. With 3500 pounds I'd say leave OD off.
     
  15. wingnutt550

    wingnutt550 New Member

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    i have a 96 4x4 w/the 4.0l and it has 160000 miles on it. i had pulled a 14' fiberglass flat bottom that porbably weighs 1500 lbs with the trailer and gear. i live in NE Florida and have made numerous trips to the keys, Everglades City and the weat coast of Florida. for four years now i have pulled in OD and never had problems. Last year i purchased a flats boat it weighs out at 3400lbs I had made one trip each to the keys, Everglades City and west coast. before I went I fullyed flushed the tranny and added a 4 pass oil cooler. it has been a year now and the tranny oil is still clear but with the added load i figure i was at at least 4500lbs if not at the max 5000lbs i always left OD off. i think with the larger boat i have been lucky and am in the process of up grading to a 1/2ton chassis like the expidition. in my opinion and experence a 1000 to 1500lb load at highway is almost un noticable with the explorer.
     

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