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most reliable diesel commercial plow truck

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by 09dieselguy, Dec 23, 2010.

  1. 09dieselguy

    09dieselguy Senior Member
    Messages: 283

    ok guys first off i hate when people ask these questions. over the years ive been in all kinds of trucks. diesels and gas powered. i not have a 99 cummins that i push a 9.2 boss v with. i had a 05 duramax before that.

    id like to up grade to a new boss 9.2 vxt with a set of wings.

    im thinking i will up grade the truck at the same point and sell my built cummins as a package deal kinda thing.

    id really like to get another cummins quad cab with a 6 speed.

    im thinking about a short box as thats what i have now. a long box is just that. a little to long for me for every day use. i have a fuel tank and tool box mounted in the bed which leaves a little bed space but i get by just fine.

    im plow commercialy and would like to see what every ones thoughts are on a every day driveable diesel truck and how they are holding up to a few years worth of plowing.

    i really wouldnt mind another duramax. but im thinking the 9.2 with wings will throw the front over way to much. id like to find a quad cab short bed or a single cab long bed for the duramax.

    ive also been looking at some powerstrokes quad cab short bed as well with a 6.0.

    ive driven them all but not plowed with a newer 6.0. i really like the dodge and the ford for the straight axle. in the chevy i would end up going with a 4 inch lift and timbren to stand a little taller. im not looking for anything crazy here. im think like an exhaust and intake is all. maybe a small chip for mileage. not looking for a 700 horse hot rod like i have now.

    what has been the favorite among work trucks in these year ranges. not looking for anything really fancy other then a truck i can work with and haul toys in or behind it.

    will the 9.2 and wings be way to much for the chevy to handle?
  2. rob_cook2001

    rob_cook2001 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,192

    Are you looking to buy brand new? 2 years old? 5 years old? lol I would not buy a stick to plow with but that is me. I would either find a 06-07 dodge with a 5.9 or a 09-10 ford with a 6.4 They are both good trucks, the dodges best selling point has always been the cummins motor, the 5.9 is a great motor but I do not think the 6.7 has any advantages over the 6.4psd. They all make good trucks but for a work truck I would go with a dodge or ford (don't like IFS). I am a ford guy so I am a little biased.
    Hope that helps lol
  3. Pinky Demon

    Pinky Demon PlowSite.com Addict
    from Ohio
    Messages: 1,121

    What's wrong with the 99?
  4. 09dieselguy

    09dieselguy Senior Member
    Messages: 283

    you know ive always been a chevy guy. this is my first dodge simply cause of the cummins and straight axle.

    im looking at 03-05 duramax truck again,
    03 -04 cummins
    03-05 powerstrokes.

    im not biased towards one or the other. thats why im curious to see what other people are thinking. honestly im thinking about another duramax but im not 100 percent on it.
  5. rob_cook2001

    rob_cook2001 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,192

    Out of those I would go with the Dodge, then the GM and ford at the bottom of the list. I like the 6.0's but for work trucks they have a lot more problems than the Dodge or GM.
  6. Sp3cialized

    Sp3cialized Member
    from CT
    Messages: 58

    Depending on how much $ you have.. you could always have the best of both worlds and SFA swap the DMax..
  7. DaytonBioLawns

    DaytonBioLawns Banned
    from 45458
    Messages: 347

    If you are buying new, and evaluating value.....

    Go with the medium duty dodge. Get a new 4500 or 5500 with the cummins 6.7.

    5.9 is very tested, but the 6.7 surpassed all of the others in the emissions standards, and STILL does not have to have the costly DEF that could freeze up on something like a plow truck. Although, there is DEF that works fine (look at over the road trucks for example). But IMO it is just one more thing to pay for and maintenance. Chevy has it, ford has it.

    The Duramax would be a smart choice as well. How long has that been around? it's been over 10 years since Chevy had a diesel line up change from the 6.5. The 6.6 has only seen improvements with the new additions.

    The Ford....... Now I am a Chevy man, but I own a Ford. BUT I own a 5.4 gasser. I support the ford truck, but not their diesel powertrain. They have had too many changes in too little time to trust ANYTHING they put under the hood that sucks diesel. I love my gasser, and the new 6.2 gasser is a nice addition. The Ford Reg. Cab 5.4/6.2 is the least costly to convert into, and maintain as a plow truck in comparison to Dodge and Chevy. Now, the Dodge isn't far behind that though.

    Chevy is my favorite styling and I tried to find a way to walk in and buy a duramax for my fleet.... but I cannot justify it new.

    The fact that GM did away with their medium duty line keeps me, and many other contractors from coming back in the door for our light duty (class 3) trucks. I got my Ford, hoping I would save up and get a DMax.... but I now have the need for a class five truck.... and I can't get that with GM. So off to Dodge I go.

    If you want to have a fleet, in service it makes sense to have all the same make. If you want to have a fleet with a class 4 or 5 in it, it is really down to just two. Ford and Dodge.... and if you want a Ford you will have to wait another five years for them to have something that is tested and reliable. For me the pricing, styling, cost to use, and depreciation all play roles in why I buy a truck. The Ram is the easiest truck to sell right now (used dealer told me that), and it holds a big after market. ANYTHING Cummins is good. They have said that with or without chrysler/dodge that they support the small truck/medium duty engine lines and will keep production. So if Dodge drops Cummins they will put it in something else.

    I fell in love with my Ford gasser, but I will not waste my money on their new diesel. If Chevy brings back a CDL beater line, they should put it on a larger 1 ton style truck like the F450/550 has been for years. Ford was successful with that truck, and so is dodge.

    Go price them out. You will probably find that dodge will be better by $5K on a new diesel. Ford will be a cheaper XL work truck but don't expect to see anything other than white and silver if you want a good price on that ford.
  8. D&E

    D&E Senior Member
    Messages: 104

    I can't believe nobody's mentioned Ford's 7.3. If you can find one that doesn't have a million miles on it and it's in good shape, I'd hop on one of those in a second! Of course I'm biased towards them, but my plow/daily driver truck is a 99 and has 230,000 on the clock and it's running like a champ. It's one of the most reliable diesel motors ever made. I think 03 was the last year for them. They didn't make insane power, something like 225hp and 500 ft/lbs, but honestly, that's more than enough to push a plow or pull most trailers.

    If you go with a Ford 6.0, try to get a later year. The early ones, especially 03, had some problems that got fixed later in the production run.
  9. DaytonBioLawns

    DaytonBioLawns Banned
    from 45458
    Messages: 347

    7.3 Powerstroke was a beast.... but that is because Ford didn't make it lol! :laughing:

    It was great.... but the Turbo's are notorious for blowing oil all over the place and blowin' crap up. Our fire station has had a couple. Older 7.3 PSD are great engines.... But sadly Ford decided to play with it and make what three models or so in like 2 or 3 years? The 7.3 is the only true POWERSTROKE.

    The others are just a POWER-JOKE lol..... why gamble? when you could get a cummins that is guaranteed to work right! wesport and Duramax is reliable as well...... Too bad Ford shot themselves in the foot for a few years.... I love the truck...not the diesel they have though.
  10. Dano879

    Dano879 Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    i would go with a dodge 5.9 anywhere from 03 to 06. Dont get a ford they are just junk the new ones are good but get terrible gas milage the 6.0s are terrible the 6.4 arent anything special but if you can find a 7.3 with little rust and not many miles buy it that a great truck. Gm chevy both good trucks i just dont like the fact the the duramax is made by isuzu
  11. got-h2o

    got-h2o 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,440

    Everybody knocks IFS, but SFA trucks eat through front end parts way more often than IFS trucks do. I run them all.
  12. DaytonBioLawns

    DaytonBioLawns Banned
    from 45458
    Messages: 347

    SFA burn through more, but require less aftermarket to get the best performance from the get-go.

    SFA struggles in day-to-day driving and knocks around like a mother....but lets face it.... the components are over built and over stiff..... so they fail due to the lack of "flexibility" if you will :)

    IFS is a great idea, but has weak points. Now, weak points can be used to have controlled damage. They are purposely engineered to fail in a certain spot to lessen the cost of keeping that vehicle. Thus, the GM claim for cheapest ownership over the life of a vehicle and such.

    BUT when I put a truck into commission, I would have to put a load booster of some sort on the Chevy. The SFA bears the constant weight better because of the nature of the engineering. SFA works with the load rather than against it, and it distributes it over a larger area.

    Due to price of the vehicle, price to upfit a vehicle, and the time in the upfit..... it is cheaper to do it to an SFA ford.... IF NEW. If you are in the used market, I would suggest an IFS vehicle because it will cost you less after that 60K mile mark........

    Don't ask me how I know this.... I've just been studying which truck will power my fleet in the future and learning from having both. My GM mechanic would support the remarks. We buy lightly used chevy trucks, new ford gassers, and new dodge diesels.... that is our policy.... unless an auction holds something for a lower number xysport like an EMT brush truck/service vehicle.... (good place to look for a buy)
  13. snowsniper1

    snowsniper1 Senior Member
    Messages: 240

    I have had about every diesel out there gm 6.2,6.5,6.6 fords 7.3 non turbo & turbo,6.0,6.4 dodges 5.9 in 12v,24v and cr with that being said and me being a gm guy my # 1 pick would be duramax.I have had almost all the duramax models one of my fav. was the lb7 if u upgrade the injectors great mpg's and power.I have 3 duramax right now with boss v's 2 9.2s and one 8.2 w wings, tbar's cranked up and moog front end parts no problem,alison trans slow in reverse, my # 2 pick would be super duty they handle the plows awesome, I like the 7.3 in my opion probably the best motor I have ever plowed with,the newer 6.0 is ok also,3 than dodge I had lots of front end,rust and tranny problems they pushed and handled the plows decent when every thing was working,cummins r awesome.auto is the only way to go.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2010
  14. got-h2o

    got-h2o 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,440

    Very well put, non biased statement there. I agree. There is definately things I do to my Ford b/c I can, things I would not put my GM's through. My Ford is a 1 ton SRW and actually has bigger springs than stock, so really comparing to my 2500's isn't fair either. F250s and such have been known for soft ass ends for years too though. My GM's have always carried MVP's flawlessly, and still ride great loaded or unloaded. My Super Duty is a friggan tank. It is the PERFECT truck for what I use it for. I leave the salt scales at 15-16k and run the truck loaded constantly. It works its ass off and handles it. BUT as you addressed with the flexibility, it doesn't.........therefore it bangs and clunks around no matter how often you address the front end issues. It tracks poorly down the highway, etc. It's a work truck, drives as such, and wears parts as such. Investing money into maintenance and repairs really doesn't bother me b/c the truck makes me a lot of money. The frustration comes from how frequently it happens and the downtime involved. But I suppose you'll have that with heavily used high miled fleet trucks.
  15. rob_cook2001

    rob_cook2001 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,192

    I knew this would not take long to turn into a Pissing match LOL. So your ragging on ford for not making there own diesels?? (not counting the new 6.7 psd) Well neither does dodge or GM so i don't see a big deal
    And the Cummins is guaranteed to work??? I have worked on a few cummins that beg to differ. And just because they stayed a 5.9 from 89 to 07 does not mean the cummins didn't change numerous times 89-91,91-91,94-98,98-02,03-07. ALL major changes.
    The big 3 all have there pro's and con's, pick what works for you.
  16. got-h2o

    got-h2o 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,440

    Lol and not to continue the pissing match, but GM does make their own. Dmax has been 100% GM since 03 ;)

    And my 6.0 "Powerjoke" has 225k on it and works every day of its life.

    Nothing is "guaranteed". Everything has it's problems. I agree with Robert, pick what works for you.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2010
  17. Plowtoy

    Plowtoy Senior Member
    Messages: 929

    When I think Dirtymax, I think Isuzu. Last diesel GM made that I know of was the 6.5, But I could be wrong. Let it be known "THERE ALL JUNK, JUST SOME ARE WORSE THAN OTHERS"
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2010
  18. Flawless440

    Flawless440 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,543

    I can't make my mind up, i have decided as long as its diesel. I am thinking i'm lookin at dodge for my next truck.
  19. pvtben121

    pvtben121 Senior Member
    Messages: 226

    7.3 psd for plowing
  20. rob_cook2001

    rob_cook2001 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,192

    The Duramax is built by DMAX ltd which is a JOINT venture between gm and Isuzu. If i remember correctly GM and Isuzu are both right at 50% owners of DMAX. Gm also owns 10% of Isuzu. This was true in 07-early 08, who knows what has changes since then.