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Most important based on priority

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by highmark923, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. highmark923

    highmark923 Member
    Messages: 54

    I'm somewhat new to plowing and only have a handful of residential accounts. My main goal is to ensure I don't run into snags with equipment failures. With that I have a 2000 Chevy 1500 Silverado with a 5.3. Based on some research and for the year of my truck which upgrades would you recommend in priority out of the following:

    1. Upgraded Alternator
    2. Adding a second battery
    3. Trans Cooler

    I have a limited budget and want to ensure I place my money in the most crucial spots to start. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. pooleo8

    pooleo8 Senior Member
    Messages: 271

    Trans cooler takes priority imho. Followed by bigger alternator and increased power wire and ground wire.
     
  3. bradlewislawnca

    bradlewislawnca Member
    Messages: 59

    How about HD fan clutch. Had a 04 before and less likely to overheat with that in than before. It was $70 and they let me borrow the tools
     
  4. Cosmic Charlie

    Cosmic Charlie Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    My friend plows driveway with a 2003 1500 5.3 8' fisher for 5 years with NO upgrades, and no issues ... just solid maintenance

    Being nice to your truck when plowing is the best advise I can offer. Be Gentle - No BS - If the snow gets deep put the blade just half way down at 1st pass, don't push heavy snow banks, come to a stop before shifting from D to R ... R to D

    If your trans gets WAY HOT, it will dissolve your clutches - bye bye trans ... (someone here said tranny fluid gets acidic when over heated) if you do over heat the tranny fluid (like from being stuck) change the fluid ASAP, flush / change tranny & transfer each year - or more

    If you upgrade your Instrument cluster to one from a HD 2500 / 3500 it will include a tranny temp gauge where yours is missing, and it will work just fine, see Ebay for a swap / upgrade which will having your current mileage pre-installed, about $125 plus shipping, easy swap out

    Tranny cooler would be my 1st upgrade

    Battery & alternator can be replaced when they die ...

    As said - HD radiator Cooling fan is a very good upgrade, GM has many different fans - Search Chevy Cooling fans on this site .... one too big may be nuisance on the highway, My truck came with a clutch fan (as all HD's do)- great performance & quiet on the highway
     
  5. Schnabel Plowin

    Schnabel Plowin Senior Member
    Messages: 139

    A working tranny take priority IMO.
     
  6. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992

    What packages do you have, VYU plow prep, tow group? I would start with the very cheap increase the size of the alternator feed wire to a 4 gage. Then consider a transmission cooler, and higher AMP HOUR battery.
     
  7. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,780

    I am not a chevy guy but I can tell you that plowing a handful of residential accounts will not be extremely hard on your battery. I would not worry about having two, I would just get one very good one. For your situation as it stands, I would not try to get the biggest plow your truck will handle. Go with a plow your truck can manage without much trouble. When plowing driveways, the extra 6" isn't going to so much for you. When the time comes that you are moving into lots of driveways and bigger commercial accounts, then I say step up to 3/4 ton and get a bigger plow. Again I am not a Chevy guy but I bet if you go onto a Chevy truck forum, the guys on there will be able to tell you what the weak spots of your trucks transmission are, and you can upgrade them. No need to replace the whole thing with new stock parts or whatever. Upgrade the weak spots with superior aftermarket parts.
     
  8. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,780

    This guy is very smart.

    My question about this post though is.... if he is driving a few minutes or more between a dozen or so driveways, does he really need to do these upgrades?

    Any ballpark on cost of these upgrades?

    Sorry, Im trying to learn here as well, as I am sure I could do something similar on my truck as well......?
     
  9. calhoun

    calhoun Senior Member
    Messages: 165

    If he already has the VYU (plow prep) then he will have the trans cooler and on some years even the upgraded alternator. He will need nothing to use a plow. With no plow prep I would research the front T bars to see if they are big enough for a plow. Then look into the fan clutch that comes with the plow prep (on HDs anyway). Over heating with travel will probably be worst than transmission overheat with residential plows. No need for any battery/charge upgrades, driving between accounts will keep the charge up.
     
  10. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992

    I would do the charge wire upgrade regardless of vehicle with or with-out plow prep. It can triple amp flow from the existing alternator and cost less then $100. It's been covered many times.
     
  11. highmark923

    highmark923 Member
    Messages: 54

    The only thing this truck has is a tow package.
     
  12. highmark923

    highmark923 Member
    Messages: 54

    Another quick question related to where to purchase said upgrades? Do you have a specific website or vendor of choice?
     
  13. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992

    Tow packages normally include HD coolers, as for parts, NAPA, Autozone, etc.