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Hi everyone,
I have a 2005 4x4, V8, 98,000 miles, 4.7L (not a HEMI) and I want to pull my TT with it. It didn't have the tow package, so I want to add hitch and I'm thinking a transmission cooler to be able to tow the 24', 3500 lb. (unladen) trailer. Should I do other things to prepare my DD? Should I flush the tranny? Any other tips would be helpful. Thanks so much.
 

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Hi Helene:
Welcome to DDN. Wow, 98k for an '04 is low miles! My '04 is just a bit over 122k, and I count that as low too.
How far, and over what kind of terrain will you be towing your TT? 3500 lbs is the max weight per Dodge without the factory tow package. If you are just running around a small area, and not going up/down mountains, you might be ok. On the other hand, if you are thinking of long hauls and mountains, I recommend getting a vehicle equipped for what you want to do. Are you the original owner? Do you know if your D may have the optional 3.92 axle gears? Though unlikely, if it does, that would be a plus. If you had the Hemi, I would be less concerned about this.

Don
 

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Hi Helene:
Welcome to DDN. Wow, 98k for an '04 is low miles! My '04 is just a bit over 112k, and I count that as low too.
How far, and over what kind of terrain will you be towing your TT? 3500 lbs is the max weight per Dodge without the factory tow package. If you are just running around a small area, and not going up/down mountains, you might be ok. On the other hand, if you are thinking of long hauls and mountains, I recommend getting a vehicle equipped for what you want to do. Are you the original owner? Do you know if your D may have the optional 3.92 axle gears? Though unlikely, if it does, that would be a plus. If you had the Hemi, I would be less concerned about this.

Don
Thanks Don. Yes it is low miles as it was my dad's, hardly driven and then we inherited it about 7 years ago with only 14,000 miles. I don't think it has the 3.92 axle ratio, but have the 3.55. But I still think, after sooo much endless research, (which is often conflicting) that most places say it can tow 5,700 lbs with it being 4 x 4 . It would increase to 7,200 if the 3.92. I don't know and can't find anywhere if this is the rating without adding tranny cooler etc. cause I don't have actual OEM tow package. I'm not sure what kind of towing we are going to do. If my Durango seems to handle it well, we'd love to take it far, but want to see how she does. Any thoughts and experience welcome. Thanks!
 

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I had to replace my hitch bumper last year. I got one from a junk yard for $25 and it took me and a buddy about 30 mins to install it. The rear bumper cover has to be removed, then the hitch is exposed. The factory bumper I installed slipped right over the top of the frames. The wiring takes longer if you aren't already equipped for it.

I looked on a few pages and most of them said about 5500-5700lbs for AWD models. You should be okay, but I would still recommend upgrading your transmission cooler if you plan to tow long distances.
 

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Not specific to your vehicle, but just a general note: I put a hitch on my 2016 Grand Caravan that came without the factory tow package. In that case the factory tow package includes rear load leveling suspension, upgraded transmission cooler, upgraded radiator, hitch, and wiring. I bought and installed a hitch, wiring, and a universal transmission cooler (that I mounted to the front bumper behind the grille). It worked great for towing my popup camper as well as a large utility trailer that at times I had loaded right to the max that the Grand Caravan is rated for - 3600#). I don't travel to any particularly hot areas so I wasn't worried about the upgraded radiator and was careful about how much weight I was putting on the rear axle when towing the heavy utility trailer since I had the basic stock rear suspension.
 

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Helene:
I found this chart on new cars.com under 2005 Dodge Durango towing specs. This is more like what I have seen on the Gen 2 Durango. Note that all Gen 2 Durangos are limited to 2000 pounds per the footnote, unless they have the oem tow group.

Don


Trailer Towing(a)
Drive
Engine
Axle Ratio
GCWRb
Maximum Trailer Weight(b)
2WD
3.7 L V-6​
3.92​
8600 lbs. (3901 kg)​
3700 lbs. (1678kg)​
4.7 L V-8​
3.55​
11000 lbs. (3952 kg)​
5900 lbs. (2676kg)​
3.92​
12500 lbs. (5670 kg)​
7400 lbs. (3357kg)​
5.7 L V-8​
3.55​
12500 lbs. (5670 kg)​
7400 lbs. (3357kg)​
3.92​
14000 lbs. (6350 kg)​
8950 lbs. (4037 kg)​
4WD
4.7 L V-8​
3.55​
11000 lbs. (3952 kg)​
5800 lbs. (2631kg)​
3.92​
12500 lbs. (5670 kg)​
7300 lbs. (3311kg)​
5.7 L V-8​
3.55​
12500 lbs. (5670 kg)​
7200 lbs. (3266kg)​
3.92​
14000 lbs. (6350 kg)​
8700 lbs. (3946kg)​
(a) Maximum trailer weights are rounded to the nearest 50 lbs.(b) Maximum Trailer Weight = GCWR minus Curb wt. minus 150 lbs. (allowance for driver)NOTE: All the above ratings are valid with Trailer Tow Package only.
All the vehicles are rated to tow a maximum of 2,000 lbs. without the Trailer Tow Package.
 

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Helene:
I found this chart on new cars.com under 2005 Dodge Durango towing specs. This is more like what I have seen on the Gen 2 Durango. Note that all Gen 2 Durangos are limited to 2000 pounds per the footnote, unless they have the oem tow group.

Don
For the most part, the numbers are decent. But what I don't understand is how the 5.7 w/ 3.92 axle can tow that amount of weight. The factory hitch only has a 2" receiver. Mine was rusty, but mine damn near broke while towing in the city with only about 2500lbs on the trailer. (which is why I had to replace mine to begin with).

One thing to note is that the receiver is lower than the rest of the bumper frame, so I suspect that snow and rain worked its way inside and rusted from the inside out. On the outside, it had what would be considered normal surface rust for a 15 year old truck. I found a bumper from a 2008 that was in like new condition, drilled 2x 1/4 inch drain holes and installed some 2" hitch caps on the ends of the tube to minimize how much water and ice gets inside the tube to begin with. Total cost to replace it was $30, but the 7 pin connector on the 2008 didn't match to the 2005 connector, so I still have to rewire that part, but for 95% of my towing, I only need the 4 flat connector.
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