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Old 05-31-2011, 04:19 PM   #1
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2008 28' Safari SE
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Chevy Duramax actual mileage results

I have 2008 Safari SE and my tow truck is a 2008 Silverado Duramax. It is silver, of course, to match the Airstream. By the way, why are red ones not called Redrados and black ones Blackrados? It has 50,000 miles. I do not have any chips or mods on it. On the recent trip from California's coast to Dayton, Ohio going basically on I-40, I averaged 12.4 mpg, mostly at 65 mph. We had very strong head winds. The return trip was against even stronger head winds (that's life) and that dropped the mileage to 11.9 mpg. The trip was 1280 miles each way. Diesel prices in California were about $.50/gal more of course. Today I paid $4.45 for diesel in San Luis Obispo, CA.
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Old 05-31-2011, 04:51 PM   #2
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Chevy Milage results

I also have an 08 25' SE with an '05 duramax. I have limited towing experience with my new trailer but it avg 11 mpg on all 3 outings and all 3 trips involved strong head/cross winds. Best I ever got was 14 with the wind at my back pulling a goose neck horse trailer w/one horse. I have always questioned the math of those who claim 16 + pulling anything. I did get 20 empty on the 1 tank trip to get the trailer though.
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Old 05-31-2011, 05:17 PM   #3
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Are you using Tow Haul Mode while towing or not? I would use Tow Haul only while in the hills and mostly on the down hill side for the braking aspects. Tow Haul will let the engine run cooler on those real hot days because it will keep the trans from up shifting and thus hold higher RMPs and less load, but will reduce fuel economy.

50K it is just getting broken in. If you have to replace the exhaust I would go for a 4 in system and if the Cat gets lost in the installation all the better.

The Edge Evolution set on level #1 will produce a bit more economy than the stock computer setting. Unless you really want max out the HP there is no reason to go for Edge's Attitude unit.
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Old 05-31-2011, 05:53 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aswbe View Post
I also have an 08 25' SE with an '05 duramax. I have limited towing experience with my new trailer but it avg 11 mpg on all 3 outings and all 3 trips involved strong head/cross winds. Best I ever got was 14 with the wind at my back pulling a goose neck horse trailer w/one horse. I have always questioned the math of those who claim 16 + pulling anything. I did get 20 empty on the 1 tank trip to get the trailer though.
Question all you want. I really don't care. I can get 16 towing with my Honda Ridgeline. All the time? No. Give me reasonable conditions and it's easily done at 62-65 mph. Oh ya, I get 20-23 mpg not towing on the interstate and thats why you won't find me buying a diesel anytime soon.
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Old 05-31-2011, 05:58 PM   #5
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We also have a diesel Silverado 2500--year 2011. Towing mileage w/tailwind in places such as Kansas, get 16-17 with speed 62-65. Previously, we had a 2004 diesel 2500 Silverado and got the same mileage. Often get 20 without towing...just depends on the type of wind & hills. Sometimes seems if we bump up the speed to 65, the mileage is even better.
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:01 PM   #6
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More info on my Chevy Duramax truck

I should have given a bit more info on my Chevy Duramax. It is a crew cab, short bed 4X4. I did use the Tow mode about half of the time. It did do a good job of controlling the speed going down the mountains. It also did shift to lower a gear sooner while climbing. The truck has very good pulling power even in steep climbs. I was never a bottleneck. I will check the air filter later today.
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:04 PM   #7
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One correction on the distance from California to Ohio. I should have said 2,480 miles each way, not 1,280. Sorry.
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Old 06-01-2011, 06:05 PM   #8
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Ref: Honda Ridgeline: which engine, trans & rear end gearing do you have

thanks, Dee
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Old 06-01-2011, 06:48 PM   #9
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23' Safari and an '08 GMC Duramax (crew cab, 4WD, standard bed) ... I typically tow at 70-75 and get about 12.5 average. Less in mountains, more on the flats. Best trip ever was at a steady 65 and I got 15.6 over the course of 500 miles. Not towing, I average 20-21 at 70. The truck's only got 40k miles on her, so based on a lot of prior experience with diesels I'm quite sure she's not fully broken in yet ... I'll know more in another 30k miles or so.

I think I recall that the torque peak with my gearing (3.73) comes at about 62 mph in sixth gear, so I'm sure that if I were patient enough to drive slower, I'd do somehwat better. But I don't.
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Old 06-02-2011, 09:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Ref: Honda Ridgeline: which engine, trans & rear end gearing do you have

thanks, Dee
They all have one engine, 250hp. 5 speed auto. Final drive ratio is 4.53. Designed for towing with heavy duty cooling for engine, transmission, and powersteering standard. All wheel drive. Ours is a '06 purchased '05, has 80k and we've been towing for 6 years with no problems.
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Old 06-02-2011, 09:59 AM   #11
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Just finished about a 2,500 mi round trip from Portland to Bakersfield to Las Vegas and back and averaged 13.4 MPG. Prior to towing we were averaging 16.1 MPG.

Didn't think it was too shabby considering the mountain driving and that the engine is still breaking in (less than 4,000 mi on it AFTER the trip).

AS is a 2011 34' Classic Limited and TV is a 2011 GMC Sierra 2500HD (6.6 Diesel)...we ran in Tow/Haul mode.
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Old 06-02-2011, 10:24 AM   #12
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We are just about to order a new Silverado 3500 4x4 Dmax, crew cab, long bed SRW to pull Lucy and carry our pop-up truck camper. I am really interested in how the Duramax performs both from a mileage standpoint and a performance standpoint. I am also interested in information on the use of the tow/haul mode on the Duramax

And, by the way, did anyone ask on this thread what some Honda truck could or couldn't do??? Also, the people looking at this thread don't particularly care how your Honda, Hyundai, or Datsun performs. Please have a little courtesy.

Brian
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Old 06-02-2011, 10:55 AM   #13
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FWIW our 2500HD was great. Integrated trailer brake controller worked flawlessly with the AS.

Virtually no speed drop going over the mountains (recovered to cruise speed rapidly), great performance from the engine brake...couldn't be happier from a performance standpoint.
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Old 06-02-2011, 11:21 AM   #14
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Regardng performance, I'm not sure what I can tell you that's not in the numbers - you just get oodles of torque across a wide range of engine speeds; I learned about this the hard way on my first tow, where I managed to get rear wheelspin at stoplights, even with the considerable tongue load ... too enthusiastic throttle application is to be avoided. I'd also recommend the Detroit Locker rear axle, as it put a stop to that wheelspin RIGHT NOW. Because of that on-demand torque, you will be able to accelerate strongly, even on significant upgrades. On-ramps are a piece of cake. Passing is not terrifying.

Tow/haul I think works about the same on everyone's diesels. It significantly alters the shift points and changes the torque converter lock up points as well. You will therefore get upshifts at slightly higher rpms, which probably wastes a little fuel and adds a little noise, but I think it is so worth it. It is of the most utility when going down long, steep grades. It just keeps your speed under control without use of brakes ... I've had two diesels go over 200k miles without a brake job. Greatest invention for towing since the hitch ball, so far as I'm concerned. I just always use tow/haul when I've got a heavy load on the truck, whether I'm towing a trailer or hauling a load of stones in the bed ... even on the "flatlands" where it might not be necessary.

There's one other point: durability. I now know several folks who tow and haul things for a living, and they all buy used diesels, with typically 100k plus on the clock. They tell me that with good maintenance, they routinely get over 400k miles with no significant repair bills. Parts do fail and there is some variability of course, but they all seem to agree. Now, if you're going to trade in at 100k miles or such, you will take a big depreciation hit. But if not, most of them will soldier on for a long time. Chat people up at the diesel pumps and you'll get a larger sample size.

I thought I had read that due to your camper, you were gonna' go with a dually rig for more lateral stability?
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