I'm looking at a 96 2500 w/6.5 diesel. It has 130k on it. What can I expect for reliability, gas mileage, and what type of problems(if any) are these trucks known for? What should I look for and what should I replace regardless? Your help would be awsome
Do the regular used car check ups. Take the VIN to a dealer and have them look up the history on it. Glow plugs are important to check, they should have been replaced at least once by now. Oil cooler lines leak.
What should I look for and what should I replace regardless? Your help would be awsome Tall order as you haven't provided any info of the past repair history. Check out the entire fuel delivery system from the fuel tank to the injectors. Check or replace the fuel filter/air filter/ flush the engine oil/ tranny fluid and rear end. Check the universal joints (they're abt $100 a piece and, you have four of them if you have 4x4). Check the compression of your engine too..Most engine that are new or well maintained should read around 400..If you get a compression reading below 300, just know you'll shortly need to do some major work on the engine. Head gaskets, etc..Check your glow plugs and, if in doubt replace with AC11 type as these don't swell in the engine..(plus they take abuse better..meaning longer keyed on time cycles. cost around $10 or so each).
Think abt replacement of the batteries if they're original. Which they shouldn't be but...give it a look over anyway. Check your brakes/rotors as this is a very costly thing to replace. (can be over $600 if you go with 8600 gvw rating brakes)
Winter driving in the NorthEast, you very well wanta consider adding K1 fuel with your diesel fuel..you can go as much as 50/50 ratio, depending on just how cold it is..
Another tip, when driving your TubroCharged diesel..consider, no..I would strongly suggest that at the end of your trip/driving..not to just turn your vehicle off but, rather let it sit idling for a few minutes each and every time..This allows the turbo to wind down..
the list is by no means all inclusive but, meant to give you a starting point.
Carfax is a good investment Edmunds.com is another site where you can get history if you have the VIN.
Pre 96 trucks had some overheat issues improved by GM with improved 130gpm water pump and dual thermostats that you can retrofit from 97+ 6.5, opening exhaust 3.5" or bigger a plus to aid in overheat problems, and other stuff on post above.
PMD/FSD common fail item I keep a spare on hand, remote mounting on a heat sink, and tightening of the transistor mounting nuts have been successful in prolonging life. Oh no did I just commit mine to fail I have 42K on mine since it went on the heat sink.
97 is a better year than 96. 97 got cooling system upgrades and I beleive that's the year they piston oil spray cooling and a few other upgrades to increase durability. The injection pump was also improved.
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