Getting ready for a test run.

My mom, not too long ago, told me I could use her travel trailer for my test run if I could find a truck to tow it. I called and asked everyone with a truck and SUV I knew and couldn’t find anything. After coming up empty she then offered up her Nissan Xterra. The Xterra has been having trouble towing and I was tasked with fixing the problem. The check engine light comes on about two hours into a tow and the X looses power. You have to sit and wait for everything to cool off.

 

I was going to install an extra transmission cooler with a fan to help cool the transmission fluid. When I removed the grill guard and grill, I found the aux cooler was too large for the space available. After calling the client, we decided to return the cooler/fan combo and add an auxiliary fan to the existing factory transmission cooler.

 

I installed the aux fan and wired it up with a temperature activated switch. So, when the transmission cooler reaches 180 degrees the fan kicks on and cools it down and then switches off. This is the best solution so the driver doesn’t have to do anything except drive the X.

The hope is this will keep the transmission fluid from getting too hot and forcing the engine to run on reduced power. We will find out this Friday when we hook up and head out!

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Which way to go?

 

From my house to the Furnace Creek campground there are two ways to go. I have traveled both. One of them, the highlighted one, has a very large grade to go up(8%-10%) and the other one is long and lonely.
Trip to Death Valley

In two weeks we will be headed out to Death Valley, in the Passat or my Mother’s Xterra with the travel trailer. I’m not sure I want to tow the trailer up that steep grade. Has anyone gone this way? Do you know how hard this is on the vehicle?

I don’t want to go the long way either. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

David