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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am taking a trip around the US this year and have decided to install an exhaust brake to have some extra safety when towing my 10k# trailer in the mountains.
I need some advice as to which one is easiest to install and also if one brand is significantly better than another. I would appreciate any responses................Thanks...
 

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I would also like to see the answers on this.-THANX
 

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I work at a company that builds Fire Rescue trucks and any of the trucks that we have put on an after market exhaust brake were not worth the time or money spent. I live here in Colorado and the setup with the towhaul mode coming down the mountains it one of the greatest things I can think of. I am not sure how heavy a trailer you will pull but I have had one over 10K and I only went down into the tranny one gear and left in the tow hual mode. It did its job very well thank you
 

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I have to agree with radar1053, I have pulled my 28 5th wheel through the Wyoming & Montana mountains. By using the Tow Haul and lowering 1 gear on the Allison I never really even need to use the brakes. The TCM & ECM do the slowing down for you. vbmenu_register("postmenu_910412", true);
 

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I have to disagree. I have had the US Gear Decelerator exhaust brake for over two years now and I love it. I have a 6-speed and there is no comparision between using it and not using it. I pull a 8000# bobcat on a 2000# trailer and when using it I can bring the vehicle to almost a complete stop with out even touching the brake pedal. I did some research before buying it and decided on this one because it works down to a lower rpm range than all the rest and it doesn't need a vacuum pump etc. it's all electric, and easy to install. did it myself. Just kick it on and start shifting down. got to be careful on ice though because it will lock up rear wheels.
 

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tow haul mode tap brakes twice computer downhill brakes for you dont see much need for exhaust brake added to that but to each his own.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
which exhaust brake to install

As everyone has said the Allison does work great at braking when in the tow/haul mode. The thing that bothers me is the RPM the engine turns when going down steep mountains. I live south of Carson City, Nev where every route I take to anywhere means going over at least a 7000 ft pass. I have had experience with a Pac Brake on my last diesel (cummins) and my wife liked the saftey of having the added braking.
I will be doing the installation myself so I am looking for the easiest installation with the least maintenance..........thanks....Bob
 

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Dear Mr. Rkortan:

I drive a 2003 2500HD ext cab with Banks Stinger System and the Banks exhaust brake system. I tow a 10,000 lbs custom chuck wagon for Young Life to Rosarito, Mexico from Reno,NV. I am not a mechanical expert on trucks. The exhaust brake gave me peace of mind when driving long steep distances.
After two years, my grounding wire corroded off and the air lines developed a worn hole from friction wear. My Banks system was factory installed at the Banks Factory in California. Bob at Banks Power at 775-782-1958 has provided excellent service for my Banks Systems.
The Banks exhaust brake works with the cruise control off, tow haul mode engaged and the cab exhaust brake switch on. The transmission is in over drive, third, and second gear. The exhaust brake will not engage less than 15 miles an hour or in first gear. You can call Banks Factory for tech support 1-800-601-8072 for more accurate information. Banks has a finite warranty on electrical and workmanship. Banks also has a new brake module to supplement the exhaust brake.
I hope this information is helpful. Please email me with your feedback.
 

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From allsion FAQ sticky
http://www.allisontransmission.com/service/faq/index.jsp?CategoryID=11#107

Q. Exhaust Brake - What is the effect of an exhaust brake on the transmission?
A. Exhaust brakes are widely used in the medium/heavy duty truck market, and Allison publishes guidelines for integrating exhaust brake controls with the TCM. This integration is necessary so that the transmission can alter its shift characteristics to maximize the exhaust brake's effectiveness and not adversely affect transmission operation when the exhaust brake is not in use.
Allison Engineering has tested one manufacturer's aftermarket exhaust brake on a Duramax equipped pickup. This installation was made per the manufacturer's instructions and had no provision for communicating to the TCM when the exhaust brake was in use, and thus resulted in harsh/objectionable shift characteristics and a negative impact to grade braking performance when exhaust brake was activated. The benefit of the exhaust brake was also lessened in certain circumstances due to the lack of TCM integration.
 

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To each his own but I have pulled my 5th wheel over the Rockies 6 times. Wolf Creek Pass, Ouray to Durango etc. I've pulled the Sierras a bunch including Monitor pass. Some grades were up to 10%. I did cringe a bit at first using tow/hall and seeing how high the RPM's would go but knew it was designed to do it so I just keep using it. Has worked very well for me. My rig is probably pretty close in weight to yours.
 

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Bd

I have the BD and it works fine, as mentioned earlier, additional peice of mind!
I tow a heavy trailer and have been over the continental divide on numerous occasions in Colorado and love the BD brakes!:)
 

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I have a BD and it works fine with the tranny, too good on a slick road. Have to be real careful. If you use it with Tow/haul on it is very postive. Not sure which is the easiest to install, since I had it done. BD is not cheap. Only two things I can add, flipping on the brake is a great way to warm up your truck, takes no time at all under the load. I also blew out the gasket between the turbo and pedestal on my aftermarket turbo going down a big hill outside of Penticton BC. Mind you that I had just climbed a huge hill and let the exhaust temps climb a little higher for a little longer than I should, so the back pressure of the brake just finished the job the warping of the softer surface material on the pedestal had already started. Had to machine off a bit of the soft surface and reinstall. No problem since then. They have since changed the surface of the pedestal.
 

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Undecided

have a one ton 02 duramax,dually, we haul horse through the rockies and have considered putting an exhaust brake on.Seems a BD gets good reviews, and would like to know if these work on standard size Exhaust or would one need to increase the size
 

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have a one ton 02 duramax,dually, we haul horse through the rockies and have considered putting an exhaust brake on.Seems a BD gets good reviews, and would like to know if these work on standard size Exhaust or would one need to increase the size
If you go to the BD web page and down load their price list on their products you will find they make them for both stock exhaust and 4". I have an 02 LB7 on a 4" exhaust for sale if anyone is interested.
 

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I tow my GN Trailer (5,000lbs) with the Dodge (8,000lbs) tools wieghts etc...(200lbs) all through the mountains here in the California area and use the BD Brake with no issues. It works great :ro)

BBD
 

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Do it!

I am taking a trip around the US this year and have decided to install an exhaust brake to have some extra safety when towing my 10k# trailer in the mountains.
I need some advice as to which one is easiest to install and also if one brand is significantly better than another. I would appreciate any responses................Thanks...
VERY happy with my Banks Brake ... comments about depending on the transmission and engine alone are reasonable but the brake does make a SIGNIFICANT difference. The Banks seemed like the least invasive of the units to install. After nearly 3 years, I've been happy with the choice. I WILL tell you that I don't like the "warm up" feature and pull the fuse when I'm not pulling. I suppose it would be nice in cooler areas but, for me, it doesn't seem all that useful. Unless Chevy adds one as an accessory, I'd do it again on my next unit.

RJ
 

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I pull a 12,000# trailer all over the West, never had any issues with Allison grade braking. Works remarkably well, it does the job for me.

I'd say, save your money or make other mods.
 

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I have the banks brake. I love it. The cold weather warm up function works pertty well in ND. If it gets too cold, mostly -10 or lower i noticed that it will freeze open. After a little while at idle it will close down. Really made a difference with warm up time. I used to pull a toy hauler and have been to rockies and Rapid city with it. With both the Harleys on board water etc I weigh in @ 19,500 lbs. I was worried about the transmission slipping but after I started using it I can predict when it wants to shift and turn it off with the switch. I turn it back on and it tends to hold really well. I run with the tow haul on and try to stay @ 2200 rpm. Pulling out of the West entrance to Rocky National Park I actually had to turn it off every now and then because it would slow down too much. The best part is that pulling of the Interstate or down big grades I don't have to use the brakes. I tried pulling the same camper with the 1999 3/4 ton sub with the 454 vortec and I ended up replacing brakes, axle seals and axle bearings not to mention it had a very hard time in drive and would use second most of the time. Now, turn ac on turn sat radio up and sit back. No more white knuckles here.
 
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