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Yukon Denali AWD, Anyone?

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by 00 Ram, Aug 14, 2013.

  1. 00 Ram

    00 Ram Senior Member
    Messages: 113

    Looking around for a replacement for my Dodge pickup...the W wants an SUV. She gets stuck driving the pickup most of the time, and she's had enough of it. I need something that can tow my camper, and plow the driveway, too...which pretty much limits me to either a tahoe/yukon, or Ford Expedition.

    So it turns out a friend is thinking of selling his 2004 Yukon Denali...which I thought would be a good fit--(lightly used, from a trusted source...older, so it would be pretty cheap)...till I found that these don't have conventional 4x4--they're AWD.
    Anyone plowed with one? thoughts?
    remember, its just my driveway--although, it is a 500 foot road through the woods. worst part is that there is a section with a steep hill--'bout 100'.

    one interesting thing I found is that you can go to fisher plow's web site, and use their model selection tool, it'll let you select a denali, and they show the homesteader plow as an available match. If you try to select my current truck (2000 ram quad-cab), its not on the list. can't pick it...because Dodge says "no" to plowing w/ this model. Same with a Ford Ex. not approved by the manufacturer. (haven't tried any other plow manufacturers' sights, yet, but I thought this was telling).
    I use a snow bear on my current truck...I figure its ok because it is so light; this is not what the manufacturer is talking about when they say "don't mount a plow"; they're thinking "big, heavy, conventional power-angle beast". I could certainly use this plow on a Denali...but my concern isn't the weight--its getting stuck.

    what do you think?
     
  2. unhcp

    unhcp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,243

    NO, sorry I wouldn't even attempt it
     
  3. 90plow

    90plow Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    Sounds like it would work for you. Theres some guys running tahoes with full size 7.5 plows on them. The trucks dont look happy but it works. If you could plow the drive and unhook it right after it wouldnt really hurt the truck as much as running around town with it on. Good luck.
     
  4. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    U might consider a Western HTS. (Half ton snowplow). That would go on a Yukon. But b carful with the electric 4x4. Don't plow in auto 4x4 position. This senses when wheel speeds don't match so its clutching in and out of 4x4 all the time. When pushing snow lock it in or u will burn up the t case clutch and or the actuator motor. The actuator motor alone costs around $700 here.
    Also note that Western has a thing called quick match on there web site. It will tell u what plow will go on any truck you consider.
     
  5. 2006Sierra1500

    2006Sierra1500 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,758

    I run a tahoe with a 7'6'' Fisher HD...with the right tires you will rarely get stuck.
     
  6. unhcp

    unhcp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,243

    It has the automatic awd which you will destroy plowing, just my 2 cents.
     
  7. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    Terminology.... It's a multi disk wet clutch activated by a servo motor. When it fails u have no power to the front wheels in auto or lock, 4x4 or all wheel drive. Same failure regardless of what type of tfr case u have.
     
  8. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Mishnick- the Denali is equipped with an NVG149 transfer case. Do a little research before you spew misinformation about servo motors and wet clutches that are not there. The only wires on a 149 are for the VSS - that stands for Vehicle Speed Sensor. Save you some time. You have plenty of homework to do as it is....

    OP- I have a Denali and love it. I might consider plowing a small flat driveway with but you need to be very careful spinning the tires because excessive spinning will destroy the transfer case. Do a little reading on the NVG149 so you understand how it works and make your decision.
     
  9. 00 Ram

    00 Ram Senior Member
    Messages: 113

    Actually, from googling around a bit, it looks like the 04 Denali has the bw 4481 transfer case, which is an open center differential type.
    Seems to me that this "could" be even better than the one it replaced, not having a viscous coupling; They may be equally good at keeping one un-stuck, but I wonder if the viscous coupler type is affected by the added stress of pushing snow.
    gears and teeth give me the impression of being more sturdy than anything with a "clutch", but I could be totally off base.

    Anyway, reading the description of how the open center diff works, it sounds to me like it would be even better than conventional 4x4. Just--no low range, which I rarely use, anyway.
     
  10. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    GM used either the NVG149 or the BW4481 cases in the Denali package depending on the year and possibly vendor availability. My 02 has the 149.
    Theory and Operation of both cases is virtually identical. Both have planetary differentials, both have torque biasing to the rear axle, and both have a passive limited slip device between the front and rear output shafts.
    Neither case requires (or accepts) input from the driver or PCM.
    If you have a light right foot, run good tires, and rarely spin your tires when plowing, then the Denali could be acceptable for occasional plowing.
     
  11. 00 Ram

    00 Ram Senior Member
    Messages: 113

    yeah, light on the right-foot is not a problem. :cool:

    so...these trucks don't have a locking rear diff, do they?

    The other thing I'm not crystal-clear on is the number of wheels actually being driven at a given moment--some descriptions seem to say that all 4 wheels are getting power all the time; seems to me that (at least on this particular truck) it is just like conventional 4x4; one wheel in the front, and one wheel in the back are actually being driven. The difference being that w/ the awd differential, the front wheel and the back wheel are not locked together, (they can turn at different speeds), and if a wheel slips, the computer applies braking to that wheel so that the power is transferred to the other wheel.
     
  12. mishnick

    mishnick 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,243

    Sorry guys I am not a tfr case expert. Nor do I spend my time micromanaging every detail of every vehicle ever made. I have investigated numerous tfr case failures on plow trucks and one of the common problems is this servo activated wet clutch GM tfr case. I was mearly warning to watch for the electrically activated 4X4 option. In my experience the simple shift leaver and linkage is more reliable. If it doesn't have that it's a moot point. I now regret participating in the discussion and will unsubcribe.
     
  13. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    My Denali has a G80 in the rear axle.

    FYI, the NP243 is an electrically operated case, but has no clutches.