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Colorado pickup sufficient enough?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by kl3ankut, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. kl3ankut

    kl3ankut LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    Hello LawnSite forums, I am in the process of starting a lawn business up here in Ohio. I currently have an 06 single cab 2wd, auto, v4 colorado. I know it's a small truck, but gotta start with what I have. I was wondering if anyone knows whether or not this little truck would be decent to start with. I plan on staking the bed, and purchasing a 16ft landscape trailer, tandem axle quite soon. Mainly I was wondering if this little truck would struggle pulling that trailer, with a push mower, and Kubota zd21, or if I would need to modify the motor a little bit with a chip, or intake, to boost the power up, and no I do not plan on plowing with this truck, just pulling/transporting mulch etc. Thank you for any advice.
  2. SchnabelLawnCare

    SchnabelLawnCare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 709

    16' trailer with mulch? No.

    12' trailer with under 1500 lbs of equipment? Good to go!

    Check your manual for towing capacity. It can't handle a 16' tandem though.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. BINKY1902

    BINKY1902 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from South
    Messages: 1,123

    Here is my setup. I have a 5x12 single axle with racks, a 152 pro turn Gravely, three trimmers, a push mower, and gas and such. I pull it with a 99 Nissan Frontier with a 4-banger and auto. in it. I have no problems. I wouldn't count on that truck handling the double axle trailer though. I am maxed out at 2,000 lbs behind my truck, which is right at the max for an auto tranny with 4-cylinder. I put a transmission cooler on my truck. If you are going to be doing any significant hauling with a small, automatic truck, you need a good transmission cooler. My tranny would be gone right now probably if I didn't have it. I also have a custom chip, upgraded ignition, flowmaster, k&n, intake spacer, and other stuff. I get 28 mpg not hauling the trailer and about 22.5 pulling it. I would really stick with a smaller trailer, I run a ztr and push just like you and my truck is fine with the upgrades I done. I have a Dually 1-ton for hauling mulch, limbs, debris or whatever. I was pulling my trailer with it but I got tired of the 10mpgs.

    PMLAWN LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,534

    Upgrade the motor??? Why. so you can go faster before you lose control, or ram something that pulls out in front of you. A 6x12 would be a better match as that truck can not control that load and would have a hard time stopping.
    Start small, save every dime, sell the CO and get a truck that handle the load.
    The other drivers, and their families, in Ohio will thank you.
  5. kl3ankut

    kl3ankut LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    Thank you for the advice guys. PM that over-exaggerated assumption of yours was kind of harsh. To go faster? No. To not have a pickup truck constantly at 6000 rpm? Yes. I am kind of seeing that a 6x12 might be a little more efficient. Binky did you ever pull before you upgraded your Frontier's motor? I am just wondering if it is a night and day difference between, or if it' s a waste of time.
  6. MileHigh

    MileHigh LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,466

    O god no.....
  7. BINKY1902

    BINKY1902 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from South
    Messages: 1,123

    Yeah I tried to pull for a while. I mainly upgraded the motor to add horses and improve fuel economy. The improved horsepower kept less strain on the tranny, keeping it from shifting down so much. The tranny cooler is the most important thing. I also upgraded my brakes, but to be honest all this would cost a fortune unless your able to do the work yourself. I've been pulling with the Frontier for three years, and I also haul a 18ft bass boat with it. My truck has well over 100,000 miles on it. You can handle a 5x12 or something with your truck. If you get to hauling too much, as in your hauling as much or more than your truck actually weighs, it gets dangerous. I've seen people hauling like this and go around a curve and the trailer pulls them right off the road. You will eventually have to upgrade as your biz grows, I went ahead and bought a dually for heavy jobs, and for when I have to start running a lot of equipment. I would never hook my Nissan to a loaded down 16ft trailer, it would either burn up the tranny, or pull me off the road. Oh, I also installed a rear sway bar and heavy duty bumper on the Frontier. It works for me but if it were stock I'd never make it up some of the hills around here. Don't know what to tell you, you will have to upgrade sometime. If my Frontier didn't have so much sentimental value, I wouldn't have ever went through the trouble of upgrading, I would've just got something else bigger. You can find some clean older 1-tons for cheap. I paid 2,000 for my dually, it's an 81 model, but it's very clean and runs very well. That might be an option for you, because you want to have an economical truck as a personal truck. You probably wouldn't want to trade your good on gas truck for a 40,000 dollar gas guzzler and then have to drive it everywhere. It works for me having two cheaper, clean trucks, and each having it's own purpose. I have no payment and get my work done with them.
  8. bohiaa

    bohiaa LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,220

    dont take advice on a topic like this from this site.

    check the manafucture, for that truck. if you exceed the limit you could find your self up on involentary manslautter charges.
  9. kl3ankut

    kl3ankut LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    That is very valid advice Binky, thank you. I mean I am trying to keep costs down since I do have a thirty minute drive to college during school time, which is one of the benefits of holding onto this little truck. Bohiaa though, thank you for that input I did not even think about that potential situation.
  10. unkownfl

    unkownfl LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,837

    Never heard of a Colorado with a v4??? Silverados are 0% for 72 month right now I'd suggest you trading that thing in before you rip it apart pulling with it. If you must keep it down to a 6x12. I use a 4.3 silverado with a 6x12 and find it enough to get the job done but couldn't use anything smaller. First thing I will tell you is it goes through brake pads and rotors on the front every 10k miles. The engine is plenty though. Overall if you need a 6x12 or anything bigger you need to get at least a 1/2 ton or a high tow capacity compact truck like a v6 brand xyz. Nissan Frontier 6 bangers are the closest thing to a 1/2 ton before making the swap if you want to stay compact.

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