How much weight should I put in my truck for winter driving?

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I have a 2003 4.8 Chevy 1500 without 4×4, but its lifted and has bigger tires. Right now I have a total of 480 lbs. in the bed with 240 over each wheel is this enough or to much?

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4 Responses to “How much weight should I put in my truck for winter driving?”

  1. dick car guy says:

    nope not enough, weight is up in the front, think about how much that 1,200 lb engine would help if you had 4×4. If you want to get the max performance in winter, an aggressive studded tire with at least 800 lbs of weight will give you what you want some of the newer studded tires have a almost sticky compound that works great the colder it gets, all trucks are different, if this is a short bed, its light already, the problem is two wheel drive will work fine, if you have enough weight, an aggressive tire, and if you are on ice, studded tire, or better yet, buy a good set of tire chains. Les scwab has the best but most expensive set of chains for my suburban, but they are made for a heavy vehicle, (thicker, and strong) and the quick fit option adds to the price I used studded tires, but also bought a set of chains from les scwab, because if you do not use them, they will give you all your money back after april first, which I always liked, I prefer studs, because it is less work for my arthritis, but tire chains are much better in ice, but you have to keep the speed around 20 if you want your chains to last several seasons of heavy use, depending on where you live. a city street covered in snow, is one thing, a frozen city street, with snow and ice frozen under the snow, is another animal. You almost have to learn to drive with the rear wheels sometimes, and momentum is helpful, but too much speed, can send you over the edge, so you have to learn to drive like you have no brakes first of all, and in icy conditions, its actually best to stay home if you can, you can be the best driver in the world on ice, but you have no control over all the other people driving who have the wrong tires, do not know how to drive, or worse, have a 4×4 and still cant drive. I found out over many storms, unless you have to be in it, don’t go out and get stuck, it just adds to the problem, because of the slow speeds when ice and snow are present, your fuel mileage is good so don’t worry about the extra weight, you can add say six or seven hundred lbs just in front of the rear tires in sand bags or what ever you are using, keep a shovel in the truck, you can then add a bed full of snow, and as long as you don’t high center on a snow bank, you can get through winter just fine.we used to practice coming to a complete stop going forward, which throws the weight of your pickup forward, and put it in reverse, right when the truck rocks back on its suspension, keep your momentum going backwards, this can help you not get stuck if you start to pack deep snow going forward, you have to know when to back up though, (before getting stuck you can tell when things drag underneath you) its all about learning how to play in the snow, and with two wheel drive only, mild hills are one thing, forget about anything steep that is ice covered, because gravity, will stuff you in a ditch everytime if you lock the tires, no matter what, you have to keep all four tires rolling to keep control, locked up, sliding tires is out of control. have fun, I always did

  2. Walt says:

    For the past 50 or so years people have driven pick ups with no extra weight in the back and it worked fine. Your tires and common sense are what makes it work. I also have larger tires and go with a set of winter tires for the snow. All season tires are not really meant for the heavy snow, adding weight in the back only causes problems if you loose control and makes the back end slide out even more. I have tried many ways to help with traction including extra weight and found that common sense and a light gas pedal usually works just as well. Remember that in the snow it takes almost 5 times longer to get going and even more to make a quick stop.

  3. Buck Masterson says:

    I drive a little 2wd Ford Ranger. The truck does great just by putting about 300 pounds of sand in the back and keeping decent tires. I love passing up 4×4′s in the ditch because they got cocky thinking 4 wheel drive makes you invincible. Just make sure the weight is over the rear axle and you should be just fine.

    P.S. Studded tires and chains are not street legal in most States.

  4. Dominic says:

    Hey I had A snow drift in the bed of my 07 dodge
    big horn. While driving to work my truck got very shaky
    would the snow left in my bed have anything to do with
    this? I was also driving through about 2 1/2 ft of
    snow yesterday,for about 30mins. could I have screwed somthing up
    any help would be great.
    Thanx,
    Dex

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