Jump to content
  • Sign up for FREE! Become a GM-Trucks.com Member Today!

    In 20 seconds you can become part of the worlds largest and oldest community discussing General Motors, Chevrolet and GMC branded pickups, crossovers, and SUVs. From buying research to owner support, join 1.5 MILLION GM Truck Enthusiasts every month who use GM-Trucks.com as a daily part of their ownership experience. 

2500HD or 3500HD SRW

Recommended Posts

I've got a bit of a delimma. I've exhausted myself trying to think over the possibilities, and would like to get some external input.


My situtation:


We own a landscape architecture and landscape contracting business. We have always run chevy trucks, our newest current fleet purchase was a 2011 2500hd 6.0 gasser. We have several different kubota excavators, bobcats, kubota tractors, etc. Currently, our heaviest equipment weighs about 6,500 lbs and is pulled on a 10,000 GVWR bumper pull trailer.


Recently, we have been getting into pulling heavier loads much more frequently with the 14,000 GVWR dump trailer. For simplicity of maintenance, we have always run gas trucks but getting into the heavier loads, the benefits of a diesel for daily towing are starting to look better.


Here is my delimma. We are intrastate only and correctly licensed to haul any truck and trailer combination up to 26,000#. However, we would like to stay under CDL which means the heaviest duty truck I can get with the trailers we already have is a 3500HD SRW Duramax at 11,400#. This truck will also be needing to tow a single wheel tandem gooseneck to haul a larger kubota excavator which weighs in around 10,200 lbs.


I don't want to get a truck that handcuffs my ability to haul the equipment I need, but I want to draw on the expertise of some who have towed goosenecks.


Between the 2500HD and 3500HD similarly equipped, towing is identical. With the 2500HD, my trailer GVWR can be 16,000# to stay under CDL, with the 3500 HD it would have to be 14,000#. Both trailers can support the weight, but the 14,000# is closer to the max load without a higher pin weight. The 16,000# trailer can more easily bear the load but with a 2500, the pin weight would have to be lower.


Basically the question is this: Higher GVWR truck with lower GVWR trailer (3500HD SRW and 14,000# trailer) allows more weight on pin , or Lower GVWR truck (2500HD and 16,000# trailer) requires more load weight on trailer itself. What would be my better option?


I see plenty of hot shot drivers with 20-24k# GVWR dual tandem goosenecks behind 2500s but is that ideal and can the truck handle it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Only difference between 2500HD and 3500HD is the 3500HD has a 3 stage rear leafs (overload) where 2500HD has a 2 Stage. If I was in your situation I would go 3500! GMT900 3500HD did NOT include TPMS. not sure if true on 2015 models since they are identical frame and Powertrain of 2011 - 2014 HD's





Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you drive enough miles, eventually you're going to be involved in a crash. When it happens you don't want to be that guy in a CMV that was overloaded or even pushing the limit. There's a big difference between what a truck can "handle", what the manufacturer says is safe and what works out mathematically.


Will your state let you register a vehicle at a lower weight? If you can register a 3500 dually at 26,000lbs that would be another option.


If I were in your shoes I'd get the 3500. Mathematically, it's very easy to run out of available payload for your kingpin with a 3/4 ton, especially a diesel. On a 3500 you'll usually run out of gross combined weight or trailer weight before you run out of payload.


For a gooseneck, GVWR - (curb weight + passenger weight + cargo weight + hitch weight) = available king pin weight. GM says your kingpin should be 15-25% of your total trailer weight. Multiply your available king pin weight by 6.66 (15%) and 4 (25%) and you'll have an approximate range for a trailer weight.


For example....

A 2015 2WD Duramax 2500HD CCLB has a curb weight a 7196 and a GVWR of 10,000. 10,000 - 7,196 (GVRW) - 400 (2 adult male passengers) - 250 (tools, etc) - 80 (hitch) = 2074 (available king pin weight). 15-25% king pin weight gives you a 8,296 - 13,812 pound trailer. In this case even though GM says you can tow 17,300lbs it's hard to get to get that number to work.


A 2015 2WD Duramax 3500HD CCLB has a curb weight a 7314 and a GVWR of 11,400. 11,400 - 7,314 (GVRW) - 400 (2 adult male passengers) - 250 (tools, etc) - 80 (hitch) = 3581 (available king pin weight). 15-25% king pin weight gives you a 14,324 - 23,849 pound trailer. In this case GM's GCRW limits you to 16,456lbs of trailer.


You can play around with the body styles and numbers and make a 2500 work, but for what you're doing I'd suggest the 3500.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.