Towing with your truck isn’t a simple task for your truck, so if you’re looking to improve your truck for towing an RV trailer or towing a camper/pulling a camper, you made the right choice because every upgrade to your truck is an excellent addition to its performance.
Therefore if you’re looking to improve your towing performance, I made a list of the best tuck upgrades for towing, these upgrades are going to increase towing capacity and offer your better towing experience with more power, stability, and safety.
Before starting to read this articles, I would like to mention that the products listed below are mainly used for gas trucks, so you can consider this article as a “best gas truck upgrades for towing,” but if you don’t own a gas truck, it doesn’t mean that this article isn’t for you, it has many useful pieces of information that might help you in your quest of towing upgrades.
And finally, this article is suitable for all trucks, for example, if you own a RAM 1500 or an F150, and you’re wondering; “how to increase towing capacity ram 1500” or “how to increase towing capacity f150”, you’ll get a general answer here that will surely help you! Now, if you’re still interested to learn more, let us dive in!.
Best truck upgrades for towing
If you have plans to haul, tow or carry heavy loads, it’s essential to understand what your tires can handle, and choosing the right tiers is a must, that’s why today I’m going to explain how to look for the right tiers, and I will give you my own recommendation, so let’s jump in.
So every tier has specific numbers and alphabet writing in it (usually in the outside), and the ones we’re mainly looking for is the LOAD RANGE numbers or alphabet and those are “E” or “PLY10“, the tier of an E load range or PLy10 means that it can handle up to 3000 Pound, with four tiers you end up having 12 000 Pound of load power in total, which is enough for towing for your truck. Now for the best truck tier for towing, I highly recommend the Michelin Defender LTX M/S All-Season Radial Tire-275/55R20 113T, it’s a great choice, and many users agree that they’re the best tires for truck towing.
2. TOWING MIRROR
Very, Very Important to add towing mirrors to your car, the ones I like and I found theme so useful are the mirrors with clip, they offer you a better vision, and they’re vibration-free, and they’re easy to plug, now the question would be why wouldn’t just use my truck mirrors? Well, If you ever towed with your normal mirrors, I’m sure you noticed that you lack some vision over your trailer or caravan, therefore adding an extension mirror would give better vision so you can have more control over your trailer.
3. TRAILER HITCH
For those with the new “trucks,” I guess you already have one, this is more oriented to old trucks and some new. This is a very obvious addition if you plan to tow, but I felt like I should remind you that you shouldn’t go cheap on your Trailer hitch (by this I mean to not even buy one), the TH is the simplest way to increase the towing capacity of your truck. And the best Trailer Hitch for me is the CURT 13105 Class 3, I m sure you already heard about it, it’s robust, last for long, and you can use it in all weathers.
4. WEIGHT DISTRIBUTION HITCH for Sway Control
The weight distribution hitch, it’s a really solid system made to lower or even kill the sway of the trailer (I’m sure you already felt those wings on a turn, or when winds hit your trailer), so if you wish to have a better, smoother and safer ride with your trailer, the weight distribution hitch it’s a must, and let me warn you they’re no very affordable, some come at the price of 3000 dollars, but the one I recommend is very affordable, and it does the job, it’s the Equal-i-zer 4-point Sway Control Hitch, it’s a very great system that offers great performance, and the price is on point.
If you can’t afford this one, A friend of mine recommended this one for me Husky 30849 Round Bar Weight Distribution Hitch with Sway Control, which comes with half price of the Equal-i-zer and lower performance.
5. TRANSMISSION COOLER
When towing with a truck, you add some extra load or stress on your transmission system. Therefore a cooler is needed, all vehicles today have a transmission cooler, but it wasn’t designed for towing. Therefore a secondary one is needed. Why? Because while pulling you transmission temperature will be above 200 and that will make its lifespan go down, and you don’t want that, so the best thing to do is to have an additional one so you can keep your temperature between 180 and 200 degrees, some users say that’s it okay even to reach 220, but I don’t recommend it, for example, if you live in a hot area like Texas, a 220 temperature in your transmission is bad news, therefore always try to be at 180 degrees. now if you’re wondering how, I’ll leave you with a product that helped many of truck users, the Hayden Automotive 679, it’s cheap, efficient and can be plugged with a little bit of knowledge (if not just go your mechanic he will know what to do).
6. TRANSMISSION TEMPERATURE GAUGE
Now you got your transmission cooler all set you to need to follow its degree, in this case, you have two options, first options: Your truck already offers you a transmission temperature gauge, so you don’t need this upgrade, the second option your vehicle doesn’t have a transmission temperature gauge. Therefore you need one so you can follow your temperature, and this is where this upgrade is necessary, You simply need a plug and play transmission temperature gauge, and I have the best product for that is the MaxTow Double Vision 260, it’s a must-have, so you can assure and follow your temperature (please don’t be cheap about this one, the temperature is a piece of information that you don’t want to lose sight off).
7. HELPER SPRING KIT
The helper spring is a system that helps reduce the vehicle sag and improve smoothness while towing, it generally compared to airbags, if you’re wondering now what should I pick? A helper spring or an airbag, I’ll make a choice easy for you, if you’re always towing, I mean ALWAYS towing, helper spring is your choice no doubt, in the other side, if you’re 20%-40% of the time towing, the airbags are a great choice because they offer adjustability, at the end, it depends on your towing usage, the more you tow, the more you go for stability, the less you tow, the more you go for adjustability.
Now let’s go back to our Helper spring kit upgrade, so I already did the research, and for many users and me the best helper spring out there would be the Hellwig 1801, it’s a kit from HELLWING (a great manufactury that I’m not afraid to recommend).
8. ELECTRONIC BRAKE CONTROL
If your truck has already an Electronic brake controller, that’s good if not, You must not tow until you get one, it’s a necessity for your safety and others safety, driving without it would cause you some big problems that might be so dangerous, so please if you don’t own one, do not try to tow until you get one, In case you’re wondering “What is a brake controller?”, brake controller is a device that connects your truck brake system with trailer brak system, so whenever you brake with your truck, the trailer will brake simultaneity (and of course you have a time delay, that you can adjust based on the weight or load of the trailer). Now I can’t stress enough how important is this upgrade, and I did my best to bring you the best system electric brake in the market, it’s the Tekonsha 90195 P3, this device is easy to install and easy to maneuver so you won’t have any problem using it.
9. A HELPER FAN
This upgrade is more like a hack used by a friend of mine, and I felt that I should share it with you, so my friend couldn’t afford to buy a “Cold Air Intake” (You will talk about it next), so he decided to buy an extra fan for his engine, and it worked fine, the product is Flex-a-lite 118 Black 16″ LoBoy Electric Fan, you can replace your clutch fan with one or two 16 inches electric fan, and they will do a great job keeping the airflow, there is one little bad side in this is the noise, the fan offers good air movement, but it’s loud. Still, I highly recommend it.
10. COLD AIR INTAKE SYSTEM
If you’re looking to increase your truck performance in general, a Cold Air Intake System is a must, and we all know that towing needs more performance and I recommend you to get a cold air intake as an upgrade, thanks to it your truck is going to have better and cooler aeration in the combustion chamber, which going to boost the ignition of fuel-rich of air and increase the HP and finally the performance, and the best part of this, you will extend the lifespan of the engine. So I totally recommend it, and If you’re looking for one, this is my pick S&B Filters 75-5068 Cold Air or K&N Cold Air Intake Kit.
11. EXHAUST SYSTEM
The Exhaust System is composed of many parts, but the best option is to change or upgrade all of it, some may tell just to upgrade the muffler, but we’re here trying to pull some big weights, so that would be a poor decision, therefore upgrading the exhaust system is a must, if you’re wondering why? I ‘ll try to answer your by a little example imagine you’re the truck and you breathe only using a drinking straw, adding an exhaust system would free you from that straw and let you breathe normally, that’s what happens to your engine, and that’s how it gains HP and get more performance. Now for the product, remember at the start of this article I mentioned that this article is oriented for gas trucks and diesel trucks because there is a difference between them in the exhaust system, so I ll will share with you my picks in both gas and diesel trucks. (The Gas Exhaust is in the Picture above)
If you kept reading from the start, I’m sure you bumped into a part where I was comparing between airbags and helper spring kit, and when it’s best to use them, well now its time to talk more about airbags. So if you have ever been towing your trailer and noticed that your front truck is a bit lifted above the ground, you should stop right there and get a solution, one of the solutions is the airbags, the airbags will compromise the weights falling at the back of you trucks, so your truck can go back to its normal shape, now let’s go back to our comparison again between an airbag and the helper spring kit, so my advice if you’re looking for better ride quality, but it won’t increase the capacity of your pulling, so what I always recommend my friend, if you intend to have a 5th wheel go for the airbags if you’re aiming for a travel trailer or your usage is going to be so long, the helper spring kit is your choice. Now, if you need to improve the quality of riding, I have the right product for you; it’s the Air Lift 57275, a great product that will perform perfectly, but I do recommend having a weight-distribution hitch together with the airbags, this combination is just the best.
13. SHOCKS FOR TOWING
Many don’t talk about this upgrade, while I find it crucial, adding shocks in a vehicle means you’re looking to improve the quality of the ride and to reduce the impacts, now Imagine how beneficial it will be for towing because towing isn’t only about increasing the power of the truck, a bad ride could easily ruin your towing experience. Therefore you need the best shocks in the market, and lucky for you I already did the research, the product I pick is the Monroe MA822 Max-Air Adjust Shock Absorber, they’re cheap, efficient, easy to plug and the best you can get in the market.
I hope I brought some help in you upgrade adventure; this list isn’t the ultimate list “You can always find better”, but one thing is sure I searched for the best you can get, if you have any other options or opinions or upgrades, feel free to share a theme in the comments below, and finally please don’t rellay 100% on this list do some researches( there is no need to get lazy about this) and try to get the best for your truck.