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Plowing with a GM 1/2 ton

joed

Member
Location
Toronto, Canada
Would it be advisable to plow with a 1999 GM 1/2 ton pickup 4X4 equipped with the 4.8L V8 or the 4.3L V6? I am in the process of acquiring a vehichle of this nature and was wondering if plowing is possible with it. I know the 3/4 and 1 ton trucks are more suitable but I enjoy the lighter weight and hopefully, better fuel economy of the 1/2 tons. What size plow would a truck like this handle?
Thanks
 

slplow

PlowSite.com Veteran
Location
FRAMINGHAM, MA
It should not be a problem plowing with that truck for doing drives and small lots. Just make sure you have a tranny cooler . I would go with a 7.5 ft plow.
 
check the plow manufactures plow pages out most of them will reccomend what can or cant go on that truck...my guess is lighter is better for that model....may have to beef up the front end...good luck...rich
 

75

PlowSite.com Addict
That truck will work OK for you, although I'm not sure how much better the fuel mileage will be (when plowing) as compared to the larger 8's.

What will the truck be doing the rest of the season? If it's for your own use as a basic pickup, 1/2-ton will be fine but if you'll be doing any towing with it I'd suggest going at least 3/4-ton.

Agreed that a 7.5 plow should work well on that unit, check out SnoWay plows as well if you're concerned about keeping the weight down. Definitely make sure there's a good transmission cooler on there too.
 
OP
J

joed

Member
Location
Toronto, Canada
75,
Thanks for the valuable info. The truck is going to be used for personal transportation and to carry 2 21" mowers, string trimmer and blower when I run my part-time landscaping business in the spring, summer and fall. It also occasionally will be pulling a 3000 lb asphalt roller and trailer for my dad. The 4.8L is rated to pull 7200 lbs with a 3.73 axle and it apparently gets over 20 mpg. So is the 4.8 l alright?
 

ICE CREAM MAN

Member
Location
MA
Joed

You won't have any problems plowing with 1500 gmc. I had 0 1999 new body style xtend cab Z71 it plowed fine. However, I had the 5.3L in it, and it pushed some heavy snow without a problem. I plowed with a 7.5ft Fisher regular duty Minute Mount Plow. What you might want to consider is if you go with the 1/2 ton truck is to get a set of Timbrens for your front end. Timbrens are load boosters and they replace your factory rubber A-frame mounts. They do not alter the ride of the truck at all. I highly recomend them. With out them the front end of your truck will drop about 3-4 inches, making it difficult to cut your wheel. The other thing you might want to think about is warranty. GMC does not warranty an extended cab 1/2 ton, only a regular cab. In relation to fuel if that is the reason you do not want a 3/4 ton just look to find one with 3.73 rear end and a 5.3 liter in a regular duty 3/4 ton. The difference in ride and fuel is minimal, and also make sure the truck has the factory snow plow prep package (code vyu).

Good Luck,

Ted
 

75

PlowSite.com Addict
Only thing I'm a little concerned about is the asphalt roller and trailer. Sounds like that combination will be pretty close to "maxing out" the truck's towing capacity. Keep in mind that getting the trailer moving is important, but being able to STOP it is even more important! That's where the bigger brakes on the 3/4 and 1-ton trucks really help.

The 4.8 will work for you, but you will be working the engine fairly hard when towing/plowing IMO. The amount of both that you plan on doing is a factor to consider, as well as future expansion of your biz. Of course, providing you take good care of the truck there's no reason why you can't sell and move up to a larger one if it turns out to be little "light" for the job.
 
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