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Old 09-19-2020, 10:18 AM   #1
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2021 Tahoe Factory Hitch

I just picked up our 2021 Tahoe Z71 and was looking at the factory installed hitch to see its rating and capacity limits. It has the Max Tow Package and can tow up to 8,200 pounds, but I want to make sure that I fully understand the the capacity and limits of the hitch receiver.

Please see the attached photo of the label on it. It appears to be a Class V hitch receiver but I'm not sure about the two different tongue weights that are shown. One is listed as 500 pounds and the other is listed as 850 pounds. Can someone decipher and explain what these two different illustrations depict along with the related tongue weights for each one? Thanks in advance for your help with this.
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Old 09-19-2020, 10:32 AM   #2
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Interesting that both rating numbers are lower than the typical 1,000 pound or higher tongue weights of the wide body Airstreams (25 and longer). Our 2015 23D International Serenity now has a 976 pound tongue weight.

So one may need to consider a more robust aftermarket Curt receiver like we put on our 2012 Ram rated for 2,700 pounds of tongue weight and a 17,000 pound trailer.
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Old 09-19-2020, 10:50 AM   #3
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It's very very likely not a receiver or mount issue that is causing that guidance, the guidance is likely based on the fleet of vehicles this hitch is used on and the performance issues associated with those vehicles.

Tex, Also perhaps you misread the label I see it saying the tongue limit is 850 lbs and the towing limit is 8500 lbs. Now if the manual says 8200 there is an inconsistency there.
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Old 09-19-2020, 11:28 AM   #4
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Tex, Also perhaps you misread the label I see it saying the tongue limit is 850 lbs and the towing limit is 8500 lbs. Now if the manual says 8200 there is an inconsistency there.
I am also reading it as 850 max tongue and 8,500 max trailer weight for the receiver. Note that the sticker says that the tow vehicle trailer rating may be less. My tow vehicle ratings differ from my receiver ratings too.
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Old 09-19-2020, 11:35 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by BayouBiker View Post
It's very very likely not a receiver or mount issue that is causing that guidance, the guidance is likely based on the fleet of vehicles this hitch is used on and the performance issues associated with those vehicles.

Tex, Also perhaps you misread the label I see it saying the tongue limit is 850 lbs and the towing limit is 8500 lbs. Now if the manual says 8200 there is an inconsistency there.
Chevy doesn't have their 2021 Towing Guide out yet so this is all that they have released - https://gmauthority.com/blog/2020/07...ties-detailed/

According to this GM Authority guidance we have a 8,200 LB max towing capacity for our 4WD.
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Old 09-19-2020, 11:37 AM   #6
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As far as deciphering the illustrations goes: the left refers to the tongue weight only and is 850 lb. The right is tongue plus axle weight and the limit is 8500 lb.
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Old 09-19-2020, 03:41 PM   #7
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In addition to the limitations of the receiver, what does the sticker inside your driver's door say your max payload is?
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Old 09-19-2020, 04:03 PM   #8
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As far as it's practical meaning goes, it is providing guidance for the worst case circumstance. So if you happen to be pulling an 8500 lb total weight trailer, the tongue must be 10% or 850. Since it only provides guidance at 8,500 lbs, the maximum allowable tongue weight at say 6,500 lbs is not known. We can infer though it would be some amount more than 850 and I can show why that is so, but if you wish to stay conservative then treat both limits as hard.
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Old 09-20-2020, 10:17 AM   #9
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Don't forget that the hitch rating on a vehicle is actually its tow rating. Just putting a more robust hitch system won't fix a vehicle's overall tow rating. The overall tow rating and ability to support a particular tongue weight incorporates other factors like, engine, torque, frame strength, spring rates, brakes, gearing, etc. A Tahoe is basically a half ton (Chevy 1500) with a shorter wheelbase and lighter springs. The Z71 package is an off-road package (mostly plastic moldings with larger-than-stock wheel diameter). Realistically, the last thing you need to worry about is the factory hitch system failing. It will likely be fine even after the vehicle has been thrown off the road by a jackknifing trailer :-)
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Old 09-20-2020, 03:14 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Trowbridge View Post
Don't forget that the hitch rating on a vehicle is actually its tow rating. Just putting a more robust hitch system won't fix a vehicle's overall tow rating. The overall tow rating and ability to support a particular tongue weight incorporates other factors like, engine, torque, frame strength, spring rates, brakes, gearing, etc. A Tahoe is basically a half ton (Chevy 1500) with a shorter wheelbase and lighter springs. The Z71 package is an off-road package (mostly plastic moldings with larger-than-stock wheel diameter). Realistically, the last thing you need to worry about is the factory hitch system failing. It will likely be fine even after the vehicle has been thrown off the road by a jackknifing trailer :-)
Actually, it isn’t the vehicle tow rating. The label shown above even says that, and the OP confirmed it. The receiver rating is for that part number receiver, and it is likely used on multiple vehicle models and configurations, with various specific ratings. Looking up the part number in the “where used” manufacturer reference would list all the uses.

The receiver rating may be the effective tow rating if it is in fact lower than the vehicle rating, or it may not be the limiting factor if the receiver is rated higher than the vehicle.

Lots of factory receivers have issues. It is a place that a manufacturer can save money. Reference Ford, GM, and RAM receivers with strength issues.

I once had a vehicle with no factory tow rating, but it was available with an OE hitch receiver kit. The kit was the only place a tow rating was referenced, it wasn’t on the door jamb or in the manual. Use a different receiver and get a different effective vehicle rating.
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Old 09-20-2020, 03:58 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by grumblin View Post
In addition to the limitations of the receiver, what does the sticker inside your driver's door say your max payload is?
I've attached a photo of it and the tire sticker.
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Old 09-20-2020, 04:20 PM   #12
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Not a class V hitch

I don't think that is a Class V hitch. A class V is listed as 1200 max tongue weight and 12K gross trailer weight.
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Old 09-20-2020, 04:42 PM   #13
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It is not a class V hitch. V-5 is the manufacturer's number, when I was at the Chevy store they were made in Canada.

The specs on that receiver indicates a 10% TW, my meager experience tells me 15% is much safer.

The OP did not mention what AS was being contemplated?

Bob
🇺🇸

This is a Class V by the same maker...
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Old 09-20-2020, 08:06 PM   #14
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This factory hitch is rated somewhere between a class3 and class4. A class 3 is rated 6000#/600# but if you use it with a weight distribution system hook up. The class 3 goes up to 10,000#/1000#. Assuming you will tow with Wt. Dist. You should be fine with all but the biggest Classics. If you want to be sure the hitch assembly itself is an overkill in any situation, change it out for a Curt class 4. Not that expensive and you can DIY.
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