Hi, my Dad bought a brand new small camper trailer weighing approx. 3,000 lbs. The camper has electric brakes and he had the brake controller hooked up on Friday. He is going to use the camper this week. He will be driving about 5 hours. Some of the terrain is pretty hilly. He has a 2008 Pathfinder SE
I was wondering when towing the camper in the hilly areas of the trip should he use the automatic or manual feature on his Pathfinder. I have read the owner's manual regarding the manual transmission. It does not give what speeds you should travel to change to the next gear. For example 1st to second (0-20), second to third (20-35), etc, These are just examples I do not know the correct speeds.
So, this forum has never failed me before. Should the manual transmission be used for towing especially in hilly terrain and what speed are the mph shift points for each gear? Should you just use the automatic transmission and let it up shift and down shift for you?
Hi!! I drive a '93 Pathfinder that has been modified for towing, but your 2008 should be setup better right out of the gate. Since you have the SE, you probably have the 266hp V6 unless you opted for the V8. As the SE is rated for 7000 lbs, you should have no problem. Since the WD21's like mine have a more delicate transmission, I always make sure that it has had a trans fluid change yearly at a minimum. Looking at your shift selector, it appears on the left side just below the release there is a button. On my WD21, this is red and keeps it from popping in and out of overdrive when you are towing. I would check this out, and use it when you are towing if I am right.
Since I have toasted 2 transmissions on different cars over the year, I would make sure that you have a trans cooler installed, the larger the better. Nothing kills your transmission like hear. In line with that, if you notice your transmission is shifting frequently, try adjusting your driving habits and speeds to minimize that. If it continues to shift often, I would consider one or two rest stops along the way to allow the trans to cool. Make sure you install a quality electronic brake controller, and try not to "ride the brakes" whenever possible.
Hope your Dad enjoys his trip!!
Take care - Boothill2008
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