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Old 07-30-2012, 06:33 AM   #1
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Do I need "E" rated tires?

Bought a new tow vehicle, 2012 Toyota Tundra v8 (5.7L) 4x4 double cab, 8 ft bed.

Still own 1997 Sunline Solaris 2653, dry weight 4,465 lbs, I round up to 5K with add ons to be on safe side.

Truck came with:
bridgestone dueler ht684 II P255/70/r18 tread 360 temp B
12T sidewall rating
Tires are rated for 2,350 lbs each
Dueler H/T 684II: Bridgestone Tires

Almost all I have talked to say the tires are rated to tow trailer but I feel uneasy with a passenger tire. Last truck had "E" rated tires and never an issue.

Looking at these for new truck:
Firestone
Transforce AT
LT275/65R18 - E load
Tires are rated for 3640 lbs each
Transforce HT
275/70R18 - E load
Transforce AT: Firestone Tires

Here is my question. I cannot find a good overview of how to do math for true weight on tires/truck. I am thinking I need to setup the hitch camper and truck then go to a scale.

Been awhile am I on right path? Am I a worrywart thinking I need to upgrade tires?
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Old 07-30-2012, 10:32 AM   #2
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OEMs are not known for specing the best all around tire and often over emphasize gas mileage. Your Bridgestone Dueler HT684 is no exception. Check out this Tirerack comparison and then scroll all the way down to #53 to find your tires. Don't know why you're suggesting the Firestone Transforce HT as a replacement as that too is at best an average tire.

Here are some real world numbers for my truck:
rear axle empty - 2540 lb.
rear axle loaded for camping and hitched up with 1000 lb. tongue on 2499 - 3800 lb.

Manufacturers spec a tire that at least matches up with the GAWR. I don't know the Tundra numbers--check the door sticker--but doubt that you have more than a 4000 lb. axle on that 1/2 ton. So, the load capacity of your tires is adequate.

However, you still have mediocre tires and P series have soft sidewalls for trailer towing. Overkill on tires is not a good thing either because the ride becomes stiff and harsh especially on a daily driver that does far more miles solo than towing. I'd suggest looking for LRD or even LRC that will allow you to run at a more reasonable pressure to stiffen up the sidewalls. I don't have time now, but will look through Tirerack for some possibilities. By the way, the BFG Rugged Terrain, #2 on the list, is a really nice looking tire.

Henry
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:47 PM   #3
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Thanks Henry, front axles is 4k, rear is 4,150.

Keep going I am listening.

I went with "E" rated which are probably overkill as that is what I had on last truck.
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Old 07-30-2012, 06:03 PM   #4
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Hi Mark,

Jumping from a P to an LT E load range can be problematic in some cases. I know you had a 2500 PU before and it required that heavy a tire and it had the heavy suspension to go along with it. Here are some things to think though that may help you come to grips with what to do.

Some things you have going for you on your new truck. You have a long wheelbase with that cab configuration and long bed. This really helps.

Now the tire, I see you have an 18” rim. This points to you may have the newer type tire where there is a large rim but not a older large tire OD. A lot of the newer vehicles are coming this way. When the side wall of the tire from the OD down to the rim gets smaller the tire gets stiffer.

Here is your Bridgestone
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Bridgestone&tireModel=Dueler+H% 2FT+D684+II&sidewall=Blackwall&partnum=57TR8HT684I I&tab=Specs

Here is the Transforce your picked
Firestone*Transforce HT

The transforce is 1” larger in OD yet still an 18” wheel. Where I am going with this is what you have now may be tolerable, or maybe not if you air them to max side wall. I did the “wiggle test” on a new F150 with the Eco boost and the towing package. It had the large sport wheels and thin profile tires. I was shocked…. That tire side wall flex was rigid. Not at all what I expected. I also did this same wiggle test on my 2011 Ford Fusion with the sport wheels next my 2003 Trail Blazer with the older taller profile tires on it. The Fusion was rock solid and the Trailblazer was sog city.

To do a wiggle test, go to the back of the truck on a hard surface road. Lean up next to the rear fender/bumper area and look at the tire rim and the tread on the pavement. Shake the truck. If the truck is a rocking pretty good you will see it at the rim area as the tire flexes in the side wall. If it is solid, it is not going to move much. Air the tires to max side wall and try it again. If you want to feel solid, go to your 2500 if you still have it aired to 80 and try it as a comparison. This is not to say your new truck tires will be bad however this tests outcome gives you a point of reference. Go to a truck dealer and try out different truck configurations and see a difference in the effect.

The drawback of going P right to E is the E tires only get stiff up in the higher pressures. You may have to run 65 to 80 psi in them to get what it is you want in side flex. 1st your rim needs to be rated to handle 80psi. May need new rims. Then you have a rock hard tire that may end up bouncing the front of the truck all over. You could be caught in a catch 22 of needing the higher pressure to get stiff and can’t deal with the front end truck bounce.

I had a camping buddy go from P’s to LR E BFG’s on his 2002 Yukon (the shorter WB one) he was caught in this to somewhat of an extent. He had to go high pressure to gain the stiffness to get better then his existing P tires.

A jump to Load range D may be an option without having to go all the way to E. Look in the Ford dealer parking lot. They offer a LT D tire on a ½ ton truck. Try the wiggle test on them and compare to what you have now.

Here is another lead, Awellis3 (Teach) here on the forum has a 2010 Tundra towing a 95 2653. The trailer is about the same if not exaxctly the same and his truck may be really close to yours. Send him a note and see what tire size, brand pressure he tows with. He may have already proven what he has works. I do not know if there are major differences in the truck suspensions between his and yours being 2 years difference, but it is a place to start and better then most reviews as he is towing your size camper.

Another note, all LT E range tires are not created equal just as all P range tires are not. The E load range will not get stiff until the higher pressures pending brand. Some P range tires work, some really do not. I have not yet found where they rate a tire side wall stiffness I wish they did as it would really help us towing TT’s when choosing a tire. For towing you need a low side wall flex at a ride you can tolerate. Cushy ride and soft flex tires do not get along well with towing a TT.

Since you have the truck, have you tired it towing yet? I would air them to max cold pressure and try it first. You are going to notice a lot of difference going from 2500 suspension down to 1500 suspension. The tire may or may not be seen.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 07-30-2012, 07:02 PM   #5
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I'm going to repeat some things JohnB stated above as I was busy typing and surfing and didn't see his post first. So here's mine anyway.

Mark, I missed that you have the H/T D684 II rather than H/T D684--I wish tire companies would come with a better system. Anyway, your tires are #43 on the list which is better than 53

I'm having trouble getting tire specs on Tirerack today. I got a couple and then it won't go any further. Most of the tires in your size appear to be P-series SL--standard load--or LRE. The top tires are all SL at 44 psi or LRE at 80 psi. Even if you get another SL from the top 3 tires in the list, you would have a much better tire than the Bridgestones and you could air them up to 44 psi to stiffen the sidewall and get much better handling. I found 44 psi to be a little too stiff in the OEM tires on my previous 1/2 ton, but 42 was already much better. You have to play with what you and your truck and tires like--they're all different. A couple of things to watch for: the LTX M/S 2 only comes in 265/70R18--you need to keep the revs/mile the same as OEM--and for some reason the BFG has a lower load rating even if you bump it up to 265/70R18 as well--so not sure you want to go there.

JohnB found the older Michelin LTX M/S sidewalls to be too soft for stable towing. In my shopping, Michelin does have very soft sidewalls, but I have the M/S 2 and with 60-65 psi in the front have not had any problems over several thousand miles of cross country towing. However, that is way above the factory 50 psi for my front axle, but still not unusual for an LRE which can go to 80 psi--the factory simply specs the psi needed to hold up the front axle using load inflation tables and owners can add whatever suits them for better handling.

If you want a little more pressure to play with, the Yokohama Geolander H/T-S G051 goes to 51 psi, but does not carry any more load. I've recommended this tire before, and no I don't have any shares or work for Yokohama--I'm just a satisfied customer. I got very good service from G051 in LT225/75R16LRD on my previous 1/2 ton and currently have a set of LT215/75R15LRC on the trailer.

One thing to remember on any truck, is that there is no way you can change the RGAWR and that is usually the limiting factor in how much trailer you can hitch up. Adding bigger stronger tires may make you feel better, but adds nothing to the load capacity of the rear axle. It's important to weigh the fully loaded rig and pack to ensure you have reserve capacity. We travel fairly light in the truck bed--no kayaks, bikes, generator etc. so the almost 1300 lb. our "stuff" and the tongue add to the truck's rear axle is pretty much a best case scenario for a trailer like the 2499.

Henry
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Old 07-30-2012, 08:15 PM   #6
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This kind of feedback is why I enjoy this site so much. Answers with reasoning, thank you.

All other feedback has been "they are on the truck must be OK."

Just back in from adjusting my equalizer hitch to the new Toyota. I will miss the old Dodge 2500, it was a great truck. But yes a stiff ride, espicially on backroads looking for grouse spots!

John will contact Awellis3, good info.

I just have 300 miles on the Tundra nad it says to break it in at 500 miles without towing so next weekend I will begin the test. Agree I may be over compensating and will start hashing it out. Let the wiggling begin!

Anybody have a good "how to" for weighing the tow setup at a truck scale.

I look forward to this Tundra as it seems to have an agressive engine, trans, rear with a 4.3 gear and the wheelbase should keep it steady. Also realize that I have stepped down to a 1/2 ton so will keep total weight to the 75% rule I follow.

Thanks all, great info!

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Old 07-30-2012, 08:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markbrit View Post
... Anybody have a good "how to" for weighing the tow setup at a truck scale. ...
Here is what I did with mine. All the comercial truck scales have 3 platforms. I took mine to a truck stop relatively near my house and put front wheels on one platform, rear wheels on one platform and the trailer wheels on the 3rd platform. I got a weight ticket showing total of all 3 and also the weight of each platform. I pulled off the scale, unhooked and pulled back on with my tow vehicle in the same exact spot on the first 2 platforms. After that just a little math to see total trailer weight and how much weight was added to each of the axles on the tow vehicle.

I did go when there were no comercial trucks using the scale and told the scale guy what I wanted to do and he said "no problem" and pointed out where I could unhitch without being in anyone's way.
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Old 07-30-2012, 09:45 PM   #8
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I won't add too much to this except that my other Excursion had Bridgestone Duelers on it when I bought it. I guess they weren't too bad when new, but they didn't last too long (not quite 50k) and they got to be really loud and out of balance as they got older (over 30k on them). The noise was really bad. I was completely shocked when I went to new tires, I could hear the engine on it like I never could before.
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Old 07-31-2012, 07:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markbrit View Post
Anybody have a good "how to" for weighing the tow setup at a truck scale.
Hi Mark,

See here for "almost" all the weighing info. If has pictures of the process. One of these days I will create a post with all of it in one spot. In this case Nana was coming to a M & G we where both attending and I weighed their tongue weight at the campground so it saved them 1 weighing.

How do you weigh your TT??

Here is the more complete "How to" and it includes how to get a TT tongue weight. Scroll down to post # 27. It explains this in detail.

2000 T-2753 and a 2011 Durango AWD 5.7L

Before you head to the scales, load the truck bed, camper and full tank of gas the same way you go camping. Adjust the WD hitch before you go. With those 3 sets of weights you can sort out all the towing weights related to the truck and camper.

Good luck and lets us know if you need more.

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Old 08-10-2012, 07:07 AM   #10
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Sunday headed to truck scale. Thanks all for feedback.

Also saw neighbor looking at me sort of funny as I wiggled my truck in driveway
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Old 08-10-2012, 07:29 AM   #11
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Mark,

I have LREs on my 2011 Tundra. My tundra is a 5.7 double cab like yours, but is a TRD (stiffer suspension) and has the 6.5' bed. Stock tires were "P" rated BFG Rugged Trails, which were horrible with squirmy sidewalls for towing.

I went with the LRE tires because I wanted to put the BFG AT/TA KOs on the truck and that was what they happen to be in 275/65 R 18. I have 8K towing my T-1950 on them and I'm happy. I ran the tires at 60 PSI all around and was very happy with the ride towing. I run them 40-50 around town not towing and the ride is stiffish, but that doesn't bother me (those tires would work well in the grouse woods as long as it isn't too boggy .
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Old 08-10-2012, 08:08 AM   #12
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Another thought.... the heaviest tire that Tundras come with is: LT285/70R17 BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A tires, which is a LRD tire.

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Old 08-10-2012, 10:39 AM   #13
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Quote:
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Also saw neighbor looking at me sort of funny as I wiggled my truck in driveway

Now that is funny.... Hey, maybe you can start a new trend... Next time you see your neighbor ask them, Have you wiggled your truck today....

Good luck at the scales.

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Old 08-12-2012, 09:14 PM   #14
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OK Gang made it to the Cat Scale. worked out great except I only got 2 weighs in not the 3rd one without weight distributing disabled. Ugh... I forgot! Oh well I plan to return when I have truck/camper fully packed.

This is included on both weights:
500 lbs of passengers included
50 lbs of tools in bed of truck, otherwise empty.
14 gallons of gas in a 26 gallon tank (84 lbs)

Ticket #1 - truck & trailer with WD hitch hooked up:
Steer Axle - 3,600 lbs
Drive Axle - 3,580 lbs
Trailer Axle - 4,400 lbs
Gross Weight - 11,620 lbs

Ticket #2 - truck with no trailer:
Steer Axle - 3,700 lbs
Drive Axle - 2,720 lbs
Trailer Axle - 0 lbs
Gross Weight - 6,420 lbs


Initial thoughts:
Was surprised my front end lightened up with WD connected. I think I feel OK with it though as drive was smooth and comfortable. No floating.

Both axles are below max range.

If I did my math right I see trailer weigh in at 5,200 lbs. GVWR is 7,000 lbs.

Tires are OK. They are below weight spec of 4,700 lbs and at 55-60 mph they felt good at 44 psi for a 50 mile test drive. So plan to test them on a few upcoming trips.

GCWR from Toyota is 16k, so feel good.

OK my two questions:

GVWR of truck is 7,150 lb by looking at sticker in door jam. GWVR of truck from slip #2 is 6,420 lbs. Combined weight of both axles with trailer connected (slip #1) is 7,180 lbs. Should I be concerned?

Can I figure Tongue weight?

Looking forward to your feedback and thanks for reading my short story!

thanks - Mark
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