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Thread: Life of a Diesel?

  1. #1
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    Life of a Diesel?

    I'm currently looking to buy a used diesel truck but i am not quite as savy when it comes to diesels so i come to you for advice.

    i have seen alot of trucks with upwards of 400 000km's and i dont really know where that is on the life expectancy of a diesel.

    any thoughts or suggestions?

    thanks
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    Diesels tend to last longer then even the famous 4L

    400 000km isn't that high. If you take care of them I would expect it to last 600 000km pretty easy. Maybe even longer.

    Others may know.

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    depends on what make truck. Getting 6-700 km on a truck does not just mean oil changes and tire and brakes. Dodges tend to need multiple front end parts after a few hundred thou. Fords have not got there diesels right in the past 20 years. I'll leave it there as I don't want to get people going. Chevy's especially the older 6.5's were less power and most required injector pumps after a few hundred k. Engines would out live the tranny's.

    If I were to buy a truck personally it would be a dodge 2001-2003. I like the 5.9 cummins as it is a commercial engine and its been around forever.

    If you just want a toy and don't do heavy towing the 6.5 GM's were decent and great on fuel.

    Cheers!

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    I really, really really really regret selling my 95 5.9 Cummins. The body on it wasnt taken care of but the engine has atleast another 320k on it. Trans likely not. I let it go for peanuts because of the timing 6months ago and needed the space and the cash. I love diesels for many reasons but really I just feel nothing beats em. I've atleast moved to a VW TDI. Personally, I wouldnt really want anything other than a Cummins and likely only a 5.9. If you're getting brand new truck they all have far too much emissions crap on them regardless of make.

    I admit I'm bias because I'm a Dodge, Jeep, Chrysler guy but even all my ford and chevy buddies admit the Cummins is best. I would not be scared of 400k on the engine but like the other guys said, the trannies are typically major concern and then front end parts and bodies. If its got a good body and looks like its been taken care of I wouldnt worry about it. However, unless 4x4 is a must I strongly suggest a 2wd. FAR FAR cheaper for front end parts and you wont be chewing up all your bearings, ends, and joints like you do on a 4x4.
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    Cummins has overhaul intervals of 300-400 miles I believe.
    So still alot of life in a 300km engine.
    As others stated Dodges front end parts do wear quick especially on the earlier models(pre 2003) the 2003 and newer are a bit better but not much..

    As for the 6.5L I wouldnt touch another one unless I had to... Got one in my H1 and hate it... No guts, PMD issues, Headgasket Issues and of course the dreaded #8 cylinder failure.

    As for a ford I wouldnt buy any of their newer diesels but a 7.3L is a good reliable engine just sucks back the fuel.

    Also I wouldnt buy any diesel truck that is 2007 or newer, most would agree some would not but with all the new emissions crap in em kinda makes it not worth getting them since the good fuel mileage is out the window especially with how efficient gas engines are becoming so really your just getting more torque... sure might get more life out of them but who knows with their afterburns etc. I am going to steer clear of new diesels until they get em right.

    I just went through shopping for a diesel and ended up with an early 2004 with the 305/555 cummins, best choice in my opinion. I wasnt bias at all at one time I was looking at all makes Ford, Chev, Dodge. But I really did want a Dodge for one simple fact and that is the Cummins... Even though I hated my Dodge experiences(Both with Jeep and Durango)... Had an eye on a Ford King Ranch with 6.0 but after some research of blown heads, turbos, etc I opted out but they definitely have the best front ends in both wear and load. The main competitor to the cummins in my decision was the Dmax but I know with my Hummer the Indy suspension does like to eat up BJ's etc so that kind of scared me off... Although I did like the idea of having a real Crew Cab instead of an Extended aka Quadcab in which Dodge Offers... Although they changed that in 2010 models.
    Last edited by Injunfarian; 10-30-2009 at 01:31 AM.

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    the non powerstroke fords [pre94] were awesome ,I had a fleet of about twenty of them,all went to750 000 ,and only changed a total of 3 fuel pumps .The powerstrokes never made 200,000 without expensive repairs .Any of the gm diesels ,I wouldnt buy unless you like doing all the repairs that Injun has already stated .The cummins is a very nice engine,but unfortunately the parts that dodge makes [the rest of the truck ] are not up to the job .

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    you CAN find fords with cummins.

    FYI.

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    DO LOTS of research.

    Every truck and motor combination has perks and drawbacks. I have a 1997 Dodge 3500 4x4 with the Cummins 5.9 12 valve and YES it has front end issues with the sector shaft in the steering box. I will have the parts machined and welded up to make a steering brace shortly so yes it can be remedied.

    Hub bearings make Jeep ones seem like pocket change, starter contacts are best replaced with larger aftermarket ones, fuel lines may need replacing, fuel shutoff solinoids and relays do fail after a few hundred thou.

    Basically there can be issues and they can be frustrating. But mine has 230k and pulls like new so in terms of that end of wear and tear it is practically new. I would say gas to diesel it is 2:1 in terms of milage in wear terms. A 200k gasser is like a 400k diesel. That being said everything other than the block wears at the same rate as a gasser. So bearings, u-joints, hoses, thermostats ect need to be looked at unless they have already been addressed.

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    no mention of toyota diesel?
    when i bought my truck it had a i6 gas engine. the specs were around 155hp and 220ft/lbs. i got 350km per tank(90L) average. 0-100 was 28 seconds i could go 140-160km/h---256xxx kms

    the price of gas was killing me so i got a i6 diesel motor from a same kinda truck, and put it in my truck. the spec are like 110hp and 190ftlbs torque. i get no less the 650km per tank (90L). the motor has over 326xxx km now, it had 300 when i did the swap. 0-100 in like 5mins (j/k) but its slow ive had it up to 140 but i felt wrong. i dont like pusing it pass 110kmhr @ 2500rpm

    the diesel has way better lower end torque then the gas which is awesome for offroading. drives way slower but is almost twiceas economic. another advantage to having a [older diesel] is the simplicity and realibity of the technology, and toyota are world reknown for their diesel trucks (except in north america because they arent allowed to sell them here...why??) cummins is the cream in north america

    cummins i6 is very powerful and pre 93 dodge cummins had no computer. i do hear they need rebuilding at some point but when well taken care can last....im no expert. i think this is the best bang for your buck if going domestic. and most have turbos.

    another point i have to make is another totally not talked about motor is the hino ([all] turbo) diesel. hino motor are industrial toyota motors comparable to cummins powerwise. hino drive train has no transfer case, but an old 70s divorced transfer case($) thats need 3 drive shafts($). driveshafts (modifications) are usually necessary for any swap tho... my buddy someone has built a 98suburban with hino 4cyl turbo 4x4. it kicks ass (loud)
    you cant buy hino DD

    blah blah blah it really depends what you need and what you gonna pay
    im cheap, but i like quality, and i gave up a little power to gain economy and longivity(and simplicity). i went toyota diesel and cruise at 90-100km/h


    in the end, i dont think it really matter, just get a diesel sounds soo good

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    go read: http://cruisers.shoumatoffmedia.com/dieselology.html

    focus on the motor, not the truck

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    since it's a Jeep sight, take a look at the 3.0l cherokee, that's the nicest diesel out there. It's all Benz.

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    not that this matters, but our 05 VW golf TDI has just under 200 on it.......still going strong. i'ts due for another timing belt, and has electrical quirks, but still, it's a lot of miles considering the year.........

    it's been good to us.

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    yes they last longer IF theyare used differently. diesels usually work and stay working. it is the costant engine start and stop that kills an engine. easy to get 1,000,000 miles on a big rig if it does most of it's life on the highway,never stopped (as you see them idling in truck stops). A million miles at 60 mph is 16,600 hours,plus idling, respectable, but a vehicle in the avarage hands will last similar engine hours stuck in traffic with 150,000 on the odometer. it's the constas short trips that do engines in.
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    As stated earlier, the 5.9 cummins is a great engine, but the dodge truck is junk in many ways. Ford stopped making a good diesel when they dropped the 7.3. As far as GM goes I haven't heard much good about them other than the new ones with the allison transmission. Most newer autos behind diesels are not so great (other than the allison)
    As for the rest of the truck, I think Ford has got it best mostly because of the solid front axle. I'm a chevy guy, but I love jeeps. I drive a 2000 F250 diesel for a DD. I get about 6-700km per tank of about $90-$100, it has 160kms on it, never a serious problem and it's well used for towing and also for plowing.
    If your seriously looking for a diesel truck be prepared for double the cost of regular maintenance. My oil change uses about 4 gallons of oil and costs about $100 to do my own oil changes, a starter is about $400 etc.

    That being said, I love my diesel
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    as far as I am concerned the 7.3 [actually an international I was told ] was a great engine had 500.000 on mine .a solid 18mpg loaded or empty and tons of power if you keep injectors clean. have ford e350's .the only problem was the 7.3 was too strong for transmission and torque converter.I now have a 2008 e350 with a 6l and moderate power and fuel economy 13-14mpg. I accidently put gas in it one time,[yellow nozzle on gas and black on diesel at the station]. ford dealer said good thing it wasn't the 6.4 ,because fuel pump has zero tolerance for anything gasoline based.complete rebuild would be needed [a few thousand $].
    we now have at least 15 ford deisels at work [1999-2010 ] and with regular maintenance the engines are the last thing to wear out on the vans

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