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Duramax vs. Cummins

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by yardfarmer, Oct 30, 2005.

  1. yardfarmer

    yardfarmer Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    I am in the market for a plow truck. the only requests i have is that it is diesel and 4x4. i am personally a GM man, but i may be willing to settle w/ a cummins because it is such a good motor, but the rest of the truck i hear is pretty much junk (tranny, susp. parts etc.) i have never heard anything bad about duramaxs either so i am sorta stuck about what i want. any sugestions?
  2. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    I havent owned either but...

    I havent owned either but I did hear that some of the Duramax's did have cylinder sleeve issues.These where newer engines(not allot of miles) under warr.Beyond that I havent heard anything else about the problem.They sound like a great engine otherwise.
    That sleeve information was from a 15yr GM mechanic.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2005
  3. DBL

    DBL PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,310

    i have the cummins and its great....the suspension is fine the frotn doesnt sag witht the plow and never in the rear hauling the skid loader either...also i have the 6spd and i love that too
  4. BreyerConstruct

    BreyerConstruct Senior Member
    Messages: 132

    My Dodge has a real axle under the front.... the chevy dosn't.
    also depends how long you want to keep the truck. The Dodge is built heavier (so is a Ford) but only the Dodge's Cummins will reliabily last hundreds of thousands of miles.
    So if you'll sell before 100k miles, and ultimate load ability isn't an issue, but whatever you want. If you need to cary lots, and sell under 100k, buy a Ford. If you're going to hold on to it forever, tow a bunch, and load it up a bit... Buy the Dodge.

    There, I may have jsut started a war. :)

    I'm a Dodge guy, but I love the drive of a Chevy, and I love the look of the newest Fords; for what it's worth.


    P.S. Drive them both, see what "fits" the best.
  5. ratlover

    ratlover PlowSite.com Addict
    from IL
    Messages: 1,325

    Never heard of cylinder sleeve issues??? Injector issues with early ones but thats about it.

    A "real" axel? I ran IFS for 55k miles(before I wrecked it) on all the original factory stuff and plowed snow with a 9.5' fisher V blade. I also made countless 4x4 launches with boost and nitrous, eating vetts and stangs on the street and running a best of an 11.75 in the 1/4. The only thing I did to the front end was tie rod sleeves becasue 4x4 launches at the track with boost and enough N2O that gasser guys look at you like your from mars is hard on the stock tie rods. I made over 700HP on N2O to the rear wheels with absolutely NO MOTOR WORK. Stock turbo, stock injectors, stock heads and gaskets ect. JMO but the duramax is a great motor. Cummins is OK too but I think the Chevy package is better(hence why I bought one). Gota love that allison transmission too:nod: Speaking of allison.....if you buy a chevy buy a 6 speed. A 6 speed auto that is :cool: :D
  6. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    All I can remember...

    Yes ,Cyl sleeve issues! They had two apart in the shop at the time(Woburn Ma).The Chevy rep had been down and was keeping close tabs because it was the first two at the time that he had seen.This is going back a few years now when they where first introduced.I havent seen him in that long so I never did find out what the cause was.
  7. TLS

    TLS PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    Duramax's dont have cylinder sleeves.
  8. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    1st year Dmax had minor head problem that could result in a little fuel getting in the crankcase. 2nd year Dmax received upgrades in heads that cured that and plus made more power. 6.0 Ford had far worse fuel into the oil problems, in addition to crank sensor problems and intercooler failures. Cummins is a bulletproof motor in a turd of a truck. I speak from experience having seen firsthand what breaks and what doesnt. I drove tow trucks for many years, up until this past summer. I only ever towed TWO Duramax trucks, one was a 2500hd with a dead battery, other was a c4500 that was low on coolant so engine protection kicked in and shut it down. When Ford went from the awesome 7.3 to the POS 6.0, I towed a whole lot of them, every Ford owner I met wanted to go back to the 7.3. But I guess they have the 6.0 straightened out now. Ford also has notoriously weak front ends, I've towed a bunch that had tierods or balljoints fail just driving down the road. I only towed a couple Dodges with Cummins motors, but tons of gas engine Rams when Chrysler had that stupid fuel rail return system that burned out fuel pumps every 50,000 miles. Newer Dodges are much better, but I wouldnt even consider one unless it was an 04 or newer and had a Cummins. They finally quieted them down and got some decent power out of them. The early ones were dogs. I used to feel the same way as most guys about the live axle frontends, I had an early 90's Z71 and sold it after 6 weeks because I hated the ride. When I got my 97 1 ton I couldnt believe how much different the ride is from a half ton. Mine rides far better than a Dodge or Ford, and I don't see guy breaking front axles in GMs. In fact I've seen a lot of lifted trucks breaking front axles with solid axles, and not IFS. Anyone who thinks IFS is weaker is just uninformed. Sometimes new and improved designs are actually better. And look whos copying GM now with torsion bar front suspension. Please understand that the statements expressed in the preceding post are solely the opinion of the author. And the author is an opinionated Chevy-lovin SOB! I'd rather push my Chevy than tow your Ford!
  9. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    Wow, what a ridiculous rant that was. Let me just rephrase that so it doesnt upset everybody; I love Chevys, I love D-maxes, and I hate just about everything else. Therefore I think you should have a Chevy with a Dmax!

    What was the question? oh yeah, Duramax versus Cummins. Hmmm. Both great motors, I'd recommend the Chevy.
  10. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    I could care what I drive.lol

    Get a life ,brand loyalty I love to watch guys fight over the emblem on their grill.lol I see the same thing with sleds and bikes just makes me laugh.If it does the job at hand it is the right truck for me.
    All I can tell you is what a Factory Chevy Mechanic told me,He was doing the work on the engines,along with reps from GM.Is anyone here a factory trained Mechanic for GM?I'll listen.
  11. TLS

    TLS PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    I'm NOT a factory trained technician, but I CAN tell you that a DURAMAX doesn't have cylinder sleeves.
  12. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    well help me out,what did

    Ok no sleves,what was wrong with the first series Duramax?They didnt pull them apart for no reason.As I stated above I never heard the conclusion.
  13. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    your absolutely right, yardfarmer. All I can say is test drive a Duramax. You wont be disappointed. I drive one for work, I can't wait until I can afford one for my personal truck.
  14. Joe D

    Joe D Senior Member
    Messages: 605

    I think it was due to injector cups leaking causing it to loose coolant which resulted in mechanics thinking it was a head gasket. They are not a sleeved motor so that is not it.
    When they changed the head design it was to make the injectors servicable and keep the return lines outside the motor as the early models if leaking would fill the crank case with diesel fuel.
    The D max is just as good of a motor as the 5.9 Cummins and only time will tell if it will make the long haul, over 500,000.
    No matter what truck you drive they have + and -. Buy the one you can drive and be comfortable in for long nights of plowing
  15. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    I agree, Thank you for the information.

    I agree,couldnt have said it better myself. If your happy with your truck it is the right truck for you.
    I have never been brand loyal and do have friends that would fight for the brand they drive,just makes me smile.
    I know there are better years to buy than others and better brands for a specific year, that is all I was trying to warn people about, the Duramax had issues early on.Not that it was better or worse than any of the others just a heads up,thats all.
  16. ratlover

    ratlover PlowSite.com Addict
    from IL
    Messages: 1,325

    The heads remained the same as did power(except differences between the fed emmision and cali emmision trucks) untill mid 04. The early duramaxes had some issues with the injector cup seal leaking coolant and that getting into the oil.

    JMO but bad cylinder sleeves are not an issue;) But it would start to sound like a broken record in here

    New used, what are you looking at?
  17. Duramax

    Well, Last week my truck was getting a new transmission so I borrowed a friends 3500 duramax 4x4 dump bed with the allision! AWESOME TRUCK! Towed 12,000 trailer like nothing and got 11 mpg doing it. I was able to do 70 on the highway and still accelarate up the hills! I loved it. Now the cummins is a strong motor, but the dodge trucks are JUNK!

  18. TLS

    TLS PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    Diesel engines are MUCH heavier than small blocks. This prevents the size load you can carry on the front axle.
  19. Yaz

    Yaz PlowSite.com Addict
    from NH
    Messages: 1,061

    I love my truck!

    My buddy has a 05 Ford, nice but no ride comparison.

    He said..quote

    GM's paint is nicer
    Power folding mirrors are better (Ford does not offer)
    No lighted inside door markers any more, his 02 had them
    Can't wash the hood without a step stool
    Heated seat button is on the side so you can't find it at night
    No Onstar
    No phone
    no XM radio

    However Ford factory 3/4 ton wheels are bigger and you can get painted wheel wheel moldings on a black truck. It nice looking i'll give it that but GMC's are nice two. nothing 285 BFG's will not straiten out!
  20. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    Dmax was changed after the first year, went from 300 hp LB7 motor to 350 hp LLY motor.