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Whats the deal with Dodges?

Discussion in 'Ram Trucks' started by MikeRi24, Jan 18, 2011.

  1. MikeRi24

    MikeRi24 Senior Member
    Messages: 563

    Ok, I'll be straight up and honest right off the bat: I'm not a Dodge guy. I currently have a '06 Chevy 2500HD that has had more problems than I care to admit in the short amount of time I have owned it. I am trying to work a deal with the place I bought it for them to Lemon Law it and get me a new truck because I think a 4 year old truck with 38k on it should not be breaking everytime I go plow.

    ANYWAY....they are a Dodge dealer and really all they have in my price range in 3/4 ton trucks are Dodges. Right now I'm looking at a 2006 Ram 2500 Quad Cab short box (would REALLY like a reg cab long box but it is what it is) with 56k on it. It is an automatic with the Hemi. As I said before, I'm really not a Dodge guy, and I really don't know a lot about these. I'm looking for some straight up, honest, non-sugar coated opinions here. no need to stick out your chest and get into the ford vs chevy vs dodge debate, I just want some facts to see if this is a road I want to go down.

    I will be using the truck for plowing driveways and a few small parking lots, as well as towing my 7x12 open trailer in the summer with my lawn equipment, and some occasional hauling in the bed, and MAYBE a little heavier trailer once in a while. Thanks in advance!
  2. CGM Inc.

    CGM Inc. PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,598

    transmissions are a little weak but more on the diesel trucks when you start messing with boost. Everyone will tell you the GM is the better truck but.......they all have issues one way or another to be honest. Driving Dodge for the past 10 years and never had issues during a storm but lost a tranny in summer :) for known reasons.

    You won't get a straight answer, do what your GUT tells you is right for you and run with it!

    Triple L will soon tell you what is best ;)
  3. b&b landscapes

    b&b landscapes Member
    Messages: 74

    i have had a chevy, ford and two dodges..... out of the three i do have to say there is a reason i bought a second dodge and im now way a dodge guy....had a 95 1500 that the trans started slipping in at 236,000 miles and alot of friends who have had trans issues who do everythig from haul to daily driver... plain and simple their TRANS are crap but if you do maintenance on them maybe there is a better chance it would last... now my second is a 99 2500 5 speed, i wouldnt own a auto in the dodge unless it was new and i did reg service on trans.....
  4. MrPLow2011

    MrPLow2011 Senior Member
    from Boston
    Messages: 276

    Ok first off all the Dodge tranny problems were in the 2nd gens with the 47re. You could mod them and change out the valve body and it made them last longer. But the newer trucks 03+ have a 48re which is proving to be a rock solid tranny. Dodge trannys are like Fords 6.0 it will take 30 years before any truck guy will stop bringing it up. Dodges plow great. Yeah short box quad cabs can do driveways. Not the best because of turning radius. But the do ok
  5. b&b landscapes

    b&b landscapes Member
    Messages: 74

    and i know two ppl with 3rd gen dodge both have had trans probs neither of which were used as work trucks either during them using them but both were bought used
  6. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,194

    Didn't your Dodge only plow for 1 season or was it 2. ;) Sometimes if your having bad luck a change is in order.
  7. IC-Smoke

    IC-Smoke Senior Member
    Messages: 672

    You will need to replace the front end of the dodge often (tie rod ends, trac bar bushings etc...) the 06 dodges have a common tach failure (I have one), the "stain resistant" seats suck! if you drop any spots of water on them they show for awhile! Also with the drivers seat you will need to pull the seat cushion cover and put burlap and padding over the seat frame. Failure to do this will cause the seat cushion to break down and eventually tear into the seat cover ($400)

    Other than that They are a good solid truck. I would opt for the Cummins in the dodge but that is just my .02

    I have had my 06 since it came off the dealer lot with 5 miles on it. Currently it has 126k, Pulling a trailer almost daily and plowing snow during the winter. The transmission hasn't missed a beat yet. It all comes down to maintenance! The truck did go in for a transfer case output yoke seal... not sure why but it looked as if it came off a truck with 300K on it. Dealer repaired and I haven't had a issue since.

    Quad cab..... Dodges are smaller than the Chevy/GM. I would prefer a Mega cab dodge or a Chevy/GM quad cab over the dodge quad (even though I have one)

  8. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    When did you buy the truck?

    What is breaking "Everytime you go plow"?
  9. BlueRam2500

    BlueRam2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 765

    I agree with IC, but will add that at 63k I replaced my front parts with MOOG parts and with almost 142k on it now the front end still feels good. Maintenance is the key with these trucks, and even though I keep up with it on my truck I had to replace my trans at 106k. I have had a programmer on the truck since 15k and plowed 2 seasons with the truck. I also would try to find a Cummins, but a lot of guys will say the Hemi is a great motor.
  10. plowguy43

    plowguy43 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,281

    I can tell you right now you won't be going through anymore front end parts than your chevy. You'll also not have to worry about scraping your front end anymore on steep entrances.

    03+ 2500/3500 HEMI's have a 545RFE 5 speed auto tranny. It is extremelly reliable unless you mod the truck to 450RWHP. The gas trucks do not have tranny problems anymore.

    04.5-06 Cummins had the 48RE auto and is also reliable but mod the motor and it will go.

    07+ 6.7 Cummins have the 68RFE 6 speed auto which has proven to be very reliable.

    Downsides- its a truck and rides more like a truck than the chevy. The interior of the 06-08's aren't the highest quality or most comfortable.

    Positives- the HEMI has a ton of power for a gas motor, they handle weight very well, the cummins is hands down the best diesel made, and once you have the full four doors you'll never go back.

    Take it for a test drive and form your own opinions, I just got back from 14hrs of plowing with mine and she never broke a sweat.
  11. NBI Lawn

    NBI Lawn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,797

    Every truck has their own issues. Dodges transmissions are just fine now especially in a gasser. I would add a bigger tans cooler but I would do that to any truck. As for Dodge's and front end parts... it is a wearing item! **** wears out. Dodge uses a Dana 60 front axle. The axle has been known and proven itself in other applications to be very durable so why is it all of the sudden it is junk and it wears faster because its in a Dodge??? The front end parts come into play when someone hangs a 9.5' V Plow on the front of their Cummins truck. My brothers 06 HD Dmax has gone through wheen bearings and ball joints... does that make it junk? Also Dodge transmissions are just fine. They had a bad run in 1994 and 1995. My 06 Cummins makes 850ft lbs of torque and its a stock trans, my 99 Dodge turned 44" tires and it was stock. 4L80 GM transmissions break reverse bands all the time... i've gone through two with that issue. I would still own one though. We ask a lot of our trucks when plowing and stuff happens.
    Anyways, there are issues with every truck. In your situation I would say the Dodge will do the job just fine. I personally dont think you will be happy with Dodge interior coming from the Chev. The ride of a Dodge is much more truck like. Other than that it will do the job you are asking of it just like a Chev with similar maintenance. I wouldnt expect any more or any less maintenance with a Dodge. I would ask the Dealer if you can drive it for a day and just see what you think. You cant get a feel for the truck just going around the block with the dealer in the passenger seat.

    Is the dealership a large chain and can get another truck from a "sister" lot?

    Good luck to you.
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2011
  12. CGM Inc.

    CGM Inc. PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,598

    Bought it used with 70K so I wouldn't blame the plowing or me ;) There has been some aftermarket stuff on the engine I'm pretty sure about that since the silencer ring has been removed from the turbo.
    Do what ever you like I still won't drive a GM :drinkup:

    We just replaced another GM transmission.....
  13. RacingZR

    RacingZR Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 400

    I love my Dodge but don't expect good gas mileage with the Hemi. I rarely see over 12 MPG, maybe 14 MPG if I try. But it is my 2nd vehcile that I use for plowing and hauling. Good trucks.
  14. dforbes

    dforbes Senior Member
    Messages: 247

    one of my subs is runing an 07 with a hemi. Has not had any problems. I am running an 02 quad cab 3/4 ton deisel. When it became a plow truck the first thing i did was put timbens all the way around. I have not experianced any problems with the front end. I am running a 9.5 V. My 94 1 ton I was constantly working on the front end. If you are going to do a lot of plowing I would look at the deisel. The last storm 29 hours I used 3/4 tank of fuel and the hemi used almost 2 tanks.
  15. bltp203

    bltp203 Senior Member
    Messages: 484

    I started out with an 04 Dodge 2500 Hemi and was so pleased, that I bought an 03 Hemi as my business expanded. I have changed the trans fluid every year and havent had a problem yet. I do agree with the front end parts needing replacing. But, do it once with the right parts and forget about it.

    Like you experienced, there are lemons out there, but by far and large I feel the 3rd generation Dodges are reliable work trucks.

    Diesel vs Hemi is a personal choice. For me I don't put on enough miles to justify the extra price of a diesel motor and the fuel to feed it.

    Best of luck.
  16. CGM Inc.

    CGM Inc. PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,598

    No difference with a Ford or GM heavy truck with a big motor = guzzzzler
  17. cj7plowing

    cj7plowing Senior Member
    Messages: 404

    get it, you can plow the **** out of just about anything. the death wobble is the only concearn which is included in the front end parts going bad. I have BFG 315/70r17 2" spacers front and rear,with timbrens the truck is an animal. zero trans problems
  18. IC-Smoke

    IC-Smoke Senior Member
    Messages: 672

    I run a smarty JR on the truck in the 40hp "fuel mileage" tune and it still gets around 18mpg easily and that is towing every other day.

    the 03-05 dodges are starting to show rust in the wheel wells on the beds.... :realmad: just keep an eye out!
  19. Lifted4x4Astro

    Lifted4x4Astro Senior Member
    Messages: 130

    My 2003 Hemi has been a good workhorse. The 545RFE tranny is 100 times better than the old 47RE behind the 360's. The axles are AAM's, NOT Dana's and you get the same 9.25" high pinion front in all the 2500 and 3500 trucks, diesel or gas. Replace the ball joints and u-joints with greaseable parts and keep them serviced and you'll be good. I had mine rebuilt at around $1800 with new wheel bearings and I expect it'll last as long as I own it. Maintain the tranny with both filters and fresh fluid every year or 2 and the trans will last. My truck has the largest tranny cooler available and it almost covers the radiator! Install this in the 06 and the tranny will thank you.

    Mine is also showing the rust over the rear wheel wells. Oh well, it's an 03 and gets driven daily.

    In this pic you can see the size of the trans cooler. It is in front of the radiator on the passenger side. Add a temp gauge and keep an eye on it while plowing or towing.


  20. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,194

    And what year was the truck and how many years has it plowed for. I guess we've been lucky (touch wood) Since my dad started plowing with pickups in 1978 we've only taken 1 tranny out of a GM pickup so we can't complain. It seems some people have better luck with some brands then others. There is very little chance I'd ever buy a Dodge so I guess we're even.