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2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Pros, cons, life expectancy

Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby Copperhead » Feb 02 2019, 10:09pm

Been wondering how many used their Dmax much during the latest cold snap. No problems with fuel or filters? I did have to change one fuel filter (on the road) in my commercial truck during this time. I stay on top of quality fuel and treating it. Most folks talk about their Dmax under great conditions of weather and such. But after covering Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Indiana, and Nebraska this last week, I am willing to bet none of the sidelined Dmax 2500/3500's I noticed had owners that are part of the forum. Lots of diesel pickups, and a few diesel cars, sidelined along the road.

The only gassers I saw sidelined were usually tire issues or stuck in snow drift. I wish I could have taken snapshots of the number of diesel pickups I saw sidelined, just sitting along the interstate highway shoulder, clearly mechanical issues. Would have filled several pages of this thread.

It is one of the main reasons I only will go with diesel if there is no practical way to avoid it. It has to be really something that calls for diesel to justify the headaches of diesel. I wonder if Fuelly has a way to add the cost for real comparison of a tow to get the diesel pickup into a warm shop to thaw it out, change fuel filter, and get it going again that many of those broke down diesel pickups I saw this last week will undergo. Something that even when I live in the interior of Alaska I never had to do with a gasser pickup.

And my 2500 did great pushing snow in this cold snap running on $1.12 a gallon E85.
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby starspangled6.0 » Feb 02 2019, 10:18pm

Yuck. This "cold snap" was a week to forget at work. Apparently the fuel we buy at work is only good till -15 or -20, because once it got below that, we paid the price. On back to back plowing nights, 2 different Ferd 6.0 diesels went down with gelled fuel. Unfortunately for me, I was the driver of both vehicles. Lost an old Cat IT loader to a blown hose and our brand new JD loader went down as well. Several of the 6.0 diesels at the shop just flat out refused to start.

My Duramax started fine the first night; it was -26 when I got off work. It was plugged in the first night, second night it wasn't, and the weak batteries just couldn't muster the courage to crank it over. No fuel issues though.
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby Copperhead » Feb 03 2019, 1:42pm

Yeah, most diesel is only treated to -20F at best. if the weather is going to get below that, then additional treatment by the owner is paramount. Best option is to dose the tank with 20% or more of #1 diesel. Next to use a quality additive like FPPF Polar power or similar. I have a standard policy regarding my commercial diesels... if it is going to get below -10F, the truck is not shut off. It is put on high idle and kept running. A diesel engine returns fuel to the tank from the rail and the that fuel is warm and keeps the diesel in the tank warmer.

The other option is to use something like Webasto forced coolant heaters which also can circulate warm coolant around DEF tanks, fuel tanks, as well as the engine coolant to keep the block and heads warm. But Webasto is very proud about their products and that can become a very pricey option. One can easily shell out $3000 and beyond for a total winter protection package. For the freak bouts of extreme cold that we went thru last week, just run the truck at a high idle. If I was dealing with that type of cold frequently, I would invest in the right products like oil pan warmers, battery blankets, fuel tank and DEF tank warmers, etc. The kind of stuff we used on diesels when I lived in Alaska.

And some have a fascination with diesel powered vehicles. Go figure.
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby starspangled6.0 » Feb 03 2019, 2:05pm

The local Holiday stores advertise -30F protection, and I believe it. Never had any fuel issues in my Dmax, but the bulk fuel we use at work must be rated at -20F or higher. I'll always be partial to diesels for a variety of reasons, but this temperature dip sure did expose the weakness the fuel has in the cold.

What bothered me about the Ferds is that once they gelled, there was no way to reverse it. The 2nd time it happened, I had to limp the thing home, and it was running (and stalling about every 3 city blocks) for 3-4 hours after it began to gel. I stopped and threw 2 bottles of Heet in the tank, but that did nothing for me. After another hour or so on the road, I tossed in 5 gallons of fresh diesel plus an entire jug of Howe's fuel treatment\anti-gel, and that also did nothing. I was looking for Diesel 911, but it had sold out across most of the metro area.
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby Copperhead » Feb 03 2019, 2:16pm

I took a load to Menomonie, WI during that bout and picked up another the next day in Owatonna, MN. I just never shut the truck off. The biggest adventure for me was bringing the tire pressures up in the cold to handle the gross load out of Owatonna. Being out in the cold with a glad hand air hose attached to the semi trailer air line and manually airing up drive and steer tires in that kind of cold is not fun. All the tires were down by 15 PSI due to the cold. Not a good thing if one is going to put 46,500 lb of goodies in a 32,000 lb truck.

Ahhh.... a day in the life of the truck driver. Probably wouldn't put so much effort into things except it is my truck and I pay the bills. But it is getting tougher on this old Cavalry Sergeant who is in his mid 60's.
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby Daubs » Feb 08 2019, 3:26am

Great thread!

I opted for the 8.1 when ordering my 2004 2500HD/CC/4x4. Production had shut down on the DMAX LB7's while they switched to LLY's...but didn't matter to me, I was going big gasser.

Glad I did.

I've put a new water pump on my 8.1 @ the 130k mile mark. Nothing else to the motor. Doesn't burn oil, does have cold start knock, and I believe exhaust gasket is going bad. Aside from that, very solid.

It was a daily driver until 8 years ago, and gets around 5k miles per year now. Mainly towing ATV trailer, hauling stuff, hunt/fish, etc.

I'm contemplating gas vs. diesel. Don't really need a diesel, but would like to give it a try. I would buy certified used with 6 year / 100k mile power-train warranty. Would that cover diesel emissions as well?
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby Copperhead » Feb 08 2019, 3:33am

Only if emissions were added in and the terms said so. The emissions warranties are tied to the EPA mandate regarding warranty of emission systems. Totally separate animal from general vehicle/drive train warranties. For the emissions coverage to be extended, it would require its own warranty package. I really don't see a dealer doing that one.
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby 19trax9519trax95 is online! » Feb 08 2019, 3:36am

That's why you throw all that in the dumpster. Then you dont need to worry about them failing Haha.

Cant fail if it's not there.

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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby i82much » Feb 08 2019, 6:03am

the thing about life expectancy is that it depends on the cost of a replacement. that is why you see so many old 4x4 trucks on the road, but not old economy cars. it's not just that trucks last longer. even a beat to death 4x4 is worth 3k when a compact in similar condition just gets donated to charity. so people keep fixing their trucks when they would just get rid of a car.

same logic applies to gas vs diesel. if a beat to hell diesel costs 7k and a comparable gasser costs 3k, chances of the gasser going to the junkyard or being parted out when the engine or trans dies is a lot higher. if diesel, people will fix it.
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Re: 2500hd 6.0l V8 vs. 2500hd Duramax

Postby Copperhead » Feb 08 2019, 7:44pm

Except one can get a replacement L96 crate engine and drop it in for a lot cheaper than the diesel. The body and chassis is the same.
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