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Unread 11-08-2011, 11:02 PM   #16
Registered User
1994 ZJ 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Jefferson,GA, Georgia
Posts: 642
I Realized this is an older post, just wanted to put my two cents.

Keith I went through the same ordeal. I bought a 18ft Jayco Hybrid travel trailer; it s about 3500 when its all said and done. I pull it with 2002 Overland (4.7 HO).

Keep in mind the fictitious Dry Weight doesn't include any factory added item; these include propane, batteries, microwaves and of course the camping gear. Water is the last thing you may want to be carrying in the camper. My camper hold 35 gallons Grey, 35 Black and 30 Fresh. I usually haul with all tanks empty unless we are going to be on the road and will need fresh water. The point is that's useless weight which adds up really quick at 7 or so pounds a gallon.

Weight distribution is an absolute night and day difference with the Jeep. I have pulled with and without it. Once adjusted correctly (you'll want the rear and front of the vehicle to go down equally or as evenly as possible when the tongue weight is applied) it is then that you are truly distributing the weight on all axles of tow pig (as little_pig said) and trailer.

I pulled my trailer with my 94 ZJ 5.2L and found it to tow somewhat poorly. The weight of the trailer and height (wind resistance) of the trailer was felt pretty good. With the Overland the towing is much more relaxing. With the HO, I have to use 93 octane or higher for optimum performance. I am not sure if the power tech 4.7 would benefit from higher octane fuel when towing. Check to see if your limited has the HO or not.

As far as tranny coolers go, if your Grand has the tow package, it should have one. If not---get it! Trust me, it is a lot cheaper than replacing the tranny, been there done that on the ZJ.

Lastly, keep an eye on your Overdrive. Constant shifting in and out of OD generates heat, which kills trannys. I tow with the OD on when on the HWY and generally off on city driving . I turn it off when in hilly terrain or when I sense that the constant shifting (also called hunting of gears) is about to start. With experience you'll start to get the feel of when to turn it off.

Above all dude, enjoy your new camping rig.

1994 Hunter Green ZJ 5.2L Quadratrac
228k Miles, 2" BB.
2002 Slate Grey Grand Cherokee Overland
161k Bone Stock
2008 Black JK Sahara Unlimited (Love it!)
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