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Old 05-30-2008, 02:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
crash1068
 
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02 Dually Towing Power - What to expect?

I've got an 02 3500 dually and we've only used it to tow our larger trailer a couple of times since we got it a couple of months ago. I'm not really sure what to expect, but it seems weak to me. Am I expecting too much? Honestly, most of my experience has been with an 04 Ford 6.0. Got the chevy figuring the long term reliability would have a better outlook.

Our 5th wheel is about 12k & 36ft. On flat ground it'll cruise at 65-70mph, but accelerating much at all goes to downshift & redline while it slowly if at all accellerates. I'm afraid of what it'll do in the mountains or with a heavier load. Our 6.0 would hit 80mph before you knew it and had to back off. I expected it to be a little less than the 6.0, but not like this.

changed the fuel filter (made it a little better), cleaned the K&N. Fuel injectors were replaced 10k miles ago. No smoke.

Taking it to the dealer today to check out a coolant leak, but thinking of just selling it. Right now, our 5.4gas work truck will tow the 5th wheel almost as well.

Any thoughts? What's y'alls experience with downshifting & accellerating with a load?

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Old 05-30-2008, 02:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
sparky1562
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How many miles on it? Any rough idle, hard start, or fuel in the oil?
Any sign of head gasket trouble?

I would ditch the K&N and go back to stock. Could have dirty or oily MAF from it causing some loss of power. (search in the fuel system forum for air filter discussions). Get some CRC MAF cleaner and try that.

Stock tune? Get a PPE excellerator, even the economy tune one, and it will wake that DMax up. With mine of level 2, the difference towing my gooseneck horse trailer is well worth it.

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2003 GMC 2500HD Crew 4WD 117 K miles
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Last edited by sparky1562; 05-30-2008 at 02:58 PM.
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
Crjcw
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Since you have a K&N filter, I'll make the suggestion to check your Mass Air Flow Sensor. I had problems with oil on mine and have since switched to a Wix filter. Still has good flow ratings, but better dirt stopping power and no oil on the sensor. The MAF is one of the easiest places to start. And your power symptoms seem to fit.
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I too hate the K&N, but it was on there and I didn't have a stock setup. I tried a stock like filter on the K&N tube for our trip to florida recently... no difference. I did clean the MF, but didn't replace it.

No codes. 153k on truck. No fuel in the oil that I can see from the paper towel test. Level stays pretty constant.

I do have a coolant leak that leaks quite a bit when above 2000rpm. It drips/runs down mostly from above the bell housing down over the oil filter.

Starts instantly. No smoke. In fact it runs decent empty so I never noticed it until we installed our gooseneck & 5th hitch to start hooking up to the trailers. Now I guess I missed something when we bought it.

I'll buy a new filter setup if we keep the truck, but right now I just can't imagine any of the big 3 towing this weakly on a diesel, but maybe I'm used to a different running diesel.

I wouldn't even mind a tuner, but just don't want to drop any money in it on performance stuff unless I know that the truck is running right.

Anyone towed with both a ford and a chevy?
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
reloy
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i agree with sparky. the ppe does amazing things. The intake and exhaust, and a tuner are the first things i would recommend with any duramax.
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:22 PM   #6 (permalink)
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There's got to be something missing. I pull 13k with no problem, and did so even before the six gun. It's just wasn't as easy. Somebody on here will have some good ideas, I'm sure of it.
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:24 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'm all for a tuner, but I just can't spend more money until I know if there is something actually wrong with the truck. I don't trust the dealer much to tell me, but we'll see what he says. It doesn't feel anywhere near what I expected and I'm wondering if there's a problem with the boost or fuel...
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Old 05-30-2008, 03:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Did you check the boost tube off the turbo down to the intercooler for a rub hole? There have been lots of posts on that lately.

The coolant leak is probably coming from one of the hoses on the turbo.
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2003 GMC 2500HD Crew 4WD 117 K miles
4" Turbo Back Magnaflow
MKW M26 Wheels BFG 265/70R-17/E
Fold-a-cover, trailer brakes, B&W Turn Over Ball
New Injectors at 83,670, ISSPRO Pyro and Boost Pillar mount. PPE Boost Valve. PPE Excellerator.
Cognito pitman and ilder arm brace. Bilstein Shocks at 100K.
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Old 05-30-2008, 08:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
Paul Clancy
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My 02 runs up big grades at speed limit with 10,000lbs . Yes it'll downshift as needed but keeps pulling/accelerating. Check those ic hoses for leaks.
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Old 05-30-2008, 09:41 PM   #10 (permalink)
crash1068
 
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I've done some looking for leaks, but haven't seen anything. I did check the driver's side tube pretty close where I read there had been rubs.

I got it a the dealer now to look at the coolant leak. We'll see what comes of that.

I did clamp the waste gate tube to see if it ran a little stronger since I don't have much to work with like a boost gage or something to compare to except the ford. It seemed stronger (unloaded). However, when I took the vice grips off, it really didn't run any different (unloaded still). Makes me wonder if the waste gate is sticking and if now it's sticking closed instead of open.

To me the power issue or lack there of is above 2000rpm. It does pretty well lugging around below that, but not much of extra above it.

thanks for the feedback on others towing. It's hard to imagine that what I got is the norm.

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