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Old 09-03-2018, 04:33 PM   #1
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New to me diesel TV questions

Just traded in my Suburban 2500 with an 8.1L gas engine. At 10,000+ feet even it has a hard time pulling my TT. Got a 2500 crew cab with a 6.6L diesel and Allison transmission. I've never had a diesel engine vehicle before so I'm looking for cautions and suggestions reference the diesel engine. Also after reading the manual I'm not sure what and how the transmission brake works on the Allison. Is there something to do to engage it or is it automatically controlled. The manual wasn't very clear on this. No response is too simplistic here. My knowledge on diesels and the Allison tranny is lower than quail poop in a wagon rut.
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Old 09-03-2018, 06:22 PM   #2
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With my Duramax, when I enable tow/haul mode the transmission down shifts more aggressively when coming to a stop aiding in braking. If you would like more engine assisted braking enable the exhaust brake. I have found I donít need exhaust braking where I live so I just enable the tow/haul mode when towing the travel trailer. The exhaust brake is ideal for long down hill runs coming out of the mountains.
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Old 09-03-2018, 07:23 PM   #3
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I was told that there is less wear and tear when you use the exhaust brakes. True or not?
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Old 09-03-2018, 08:04 PM   #4
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Certainly less wear on the vehicle and trailer brakes. I've never heard of engine braking being creating more drive-train wear.
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Old 09-11-2018, 01:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fdhealy4 View Post
Just traded in my Suburban 2500 with an 8.1L gas engine. At 10,000+ feet even it has a hard time pulling my TT. Got a 2500 crew cab with a 6.6L diesel and Allison transmission. I've never had a diesel engine vehicle before so I'm looking for cautions and suggestions reference the diesel engine. Also after reading the manual I'm not sure what and how the transmission brake works on the Allison. Is there something to do to engage it or is it automatically controlled. The manual wasn't very clear on this. No response is too simplistic here. My knowledge on diesels and the Allison tranny is lower than quail poop in a wagon rut.
edit :
there is much more maintenance depending on that.. fuel filters, the allison is pretty bullet proof make sure the fluid has been changed at no more than 75k, all the rest of the fluids changed too.. do them all.. depending on mileage, serpentine belt changed?, depending on the year some had issues with injectors but that was solved in 2007 ish...

use tow haul mode when towing the engine braking is automatic...

I had a 2005 and it was a nice truck just front end components weren't all that "stout" my 2010 ford had much better front end components...

pics of course always help
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Old 09-11-2018, 02:23 PM   #6
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Change your fuel filter every time you change your oil.. injectors are expensive to replace.
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Old 09-11-2018, 02:59 PM   #7
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Congratulations on your new to you Duramax.

As my signature shows I have an 06 and I'm quite fond of it and the Allison transmission. This is my first diesel as well and I've had it almost 2 1/2 years. I've put on about 20k miles of the 265k that are on it now.

I bought this used truck to specifically tow my TT. I did have a bit of a learning curve as it does behave differently from a gasser. Mostly what I mean here is I had to get used to driving it in the RPM's 'sweet-spot' of 2k - give or take ~ 200 rpms. This is due to the peak torque being produced here. I found that revving it higher (like you might want to for a gasser) for a hill lets say, only started raising the coolant & trans temps. As I understand it this cycle actually gets started due to exhaust gas temperatures rising.

I invested $5 for the "Torque Pro" OBD2 app (android only I still believe) and a Bluetooth OBD2 adapter for $25. If you're an iPhone person another app out there is called "Dash Command" that can give you similar data. Of course you can always go with real-world gauges too. I'm bringing all of this up because I find it important to accurately monitor, at least, coolant and trans temps out here in sunny/hot Southern California while towing a heavy load. The factory gauges have proven to be very inaccurate.

It is also highly recommended that when you use a diesel you let it get up to full operating temps and then bring it down to normal temps before you shut it down. Bad examples would be to jump in it, quickly start out just to go around to the corner market. Also when coming home from towing letting it sit and idle for a few minutes before shutting down. I hear that this is best for the turbo's longevity as well.

Their is a huge aftermarket for the Duramax and you can go crazy with upgrades and mods. Lift pumps, tuners etc can be very effective. So far mine is mostly stock and i've only got a shot list of things that I'll do to it.

I could go on-and-on about the Duramax/Allison topic but you will find a ton of great info out there on the web. I would also go out and find an INDEPENDENT diesel mechanic that has a good reputation.

Take good care of it and it should drive circles around the gassers!

Cheers,

Jeff

6.6L Duramax LMM Specs & Information
Allison 1000 Transmission - GM Diesel Trucks - Diesel Power Magazine
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Old 09-11-2018, 05:55 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fdhealy4 View Post
Just traded in my Suburban 2500 with an 8.1L gas engine. At 10,000+ feet even it has a hard time pulling my TT. Got a 2500 crew cab with a 6.6L diesel and Allison transmission. I've never had a diesel engine vehicle before so I'm looking for cautions and suggestions reference the diesel engine. Also after reading the manual I'm not sure what and how the transmission brake works on the Allison. Is there something to do to engage it or is it automatically controlled. The manual wasn't very clear on this. No response is too simplistic here. My knowledge on diesels and the Allison tranny is lower than quail poop in a wagon rut.
I'm a Cummins' owner, but I can echo the rest of the responses here.
- Change your fluids at recommended intervals. Use a paper log (or find a digital app) to keep track.
- Fuel filter change is a must. Mine is good for 6 months. $50 if I do it myself, $150 if the dealer does it. Youtube is a good source to see if you want to tackle it.
- A diesel truck takes a while to spool up, so you won't get a sportscar launch from a stop sign.
- I engage my exhaust brake nearly everytime I drive; towing, highway, in town. No issues in 90K miles (and i'm still on my original front brakes)
- Turbo cool-down. Really only an issue if you are towing or hauling hard. My manual recommends up to 5 minutes max if I have been towing at max gross and have worked the engine hard. By the time I have exited the highway, found the fuel station, and parked, my turbo has cooled down.
- From your signature, it looks like you are from CO. Research an engine block heater for winter.
- Enjoy!!
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Old 09-11-2018, 09:08 PM   #9
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Diesel fuel in the States is DIRTY change the filter regularly. I use the additive below to prevent algae growth, control water too. It’ll also help with the amount your DEF cycles. Join a Chevy Forum that has a diesel specific section, they will help you with the do’s and downs of your specific truck, engine and transmission, they’ll help you fix things without having to take it to the dealer.


Archoil AR6200 Fuel Treatment TWO PACK - 2 x 16oz Bottles - Treats 1,000 gallons of fuel https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N9QEVQL..._QphMBb71A1BQS
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Old 09-12-2018, 05:13 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone for your replies. I have read each one with interest and they also validate my suspicions that I knew very little about diesel engines. Any new folks to this thread please continue with your facts and observations.


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