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Old 03-16-2011, 05:29 AM   #21
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Bryan,
I seriously doubt you will want or even need a tuner. All the new trucks come pretty darn good from the factory. They are tuned to be reliable and have good power. Most folks running a tuner on a truck past 2007 are doing this to bypass emissions. The diesel particulate filters and egr system are the drag on modern diesel engines. Typical mileage claims are about 2 mpg when deleting the emissions equipment.
At this time I have decided against putting a tuner on my Dodge. Currently it is quiet, doesn't stink of diesel exhaust and has more power than I will ever need. If and when the exhaust system starts costing me a lot of money in repairs I will rethink my position. I have heard that diesel particulate filters are in the neighborhood of $1500+.
The Duramax you anticipate buying will be the same - you will enjoy the quiet power of the modern diesel. Also as others have stated these tuners will void your warranty. You need to drive the truck for awhile and see how things go.
Also manufacturers have caught on about the less restrictive air intake systems. I read about some tests done in comparison of the modern stock system vs. the after market system. The difference was negligible and in many cases the aftermarket had less flow and hotter air temperatures.
I would do a lot of research before investing money in one of these systems.
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:59 AM   #22
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Brian,
I considered one. I dismissed it. They are more for increasing power than saving fuel. Save fuel back off the throttle. Slow down. It's that simple and already built into the truck.

My milage is going up after break in. Around 50,000 miles.
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Old 03-16-2011, 08:15 AM   #23
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The factory is pretty good after all these years at balancing power/mpg/reliability/emissions. The big-3 are in a 3 way knife fight in a phone booth. if gaining 2 mpg was so easy they would do it. You can gain one at the expense of the others. It will void the warranty. You can set it back to stock, they may know through other means. If you have a serious issue they will ask. You'll either tell them the truth or have to lie about it.
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Old 03-16-2011, 08:55 AM   #24
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I'm sure all you guys are right; it's just that I am a 65 mph'er on the interstate, and I don't rush to get there. It's easier driving if you don't have to be passing all the time.

I had taken the same truck, but with a 25' Safari to 3 of the four corners of the country in the previous three years - Alaska, Key West and Quebec. So I was very familiar with the truck, trailer, power and range. Especially frequency of fuel stops.

When I bought the heavier 31' Limited (much heavier, by the way) my miles between fuel stops was immediately noticeable once I got on the road. So when I installed the tuner midway on that 1800 (or so) mile trip, the miles immediately increased between stops. The power increased, but it is the mileage that floats my boat.

Setting the tuner back to "stock" is not for concealement from the dealer. But sometimes they will install an update to the onboard computer as a matter of course. If they have done that, and you had not reset the tuner to stock, the tuner will then be out of synch and have to be reset by the factory, for $$.

It would be interesting to see if a factory had denied a claim based on use of the BullyDog, but I have not seen this yet. Now, I am not speaking of a racing setting like Crazy Larry, as I am not Crazy Pat. The Tow setting works for me.

Pat
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Old 03-16-2011, 09:33 AM   #25
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Pat, I agree. Also use the Bully Dog 4 pos. on the 2000 7.3. Around town on stock, and tow with the AS. Sal.
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Old 03-16-2011, 10:49 AM   #26
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ECM's on the new Duramax & Super Duty's store any mods to their firmware. No longer can you remove a tuner and have it appear is if it were never installed.

On the Super Duty 400hp with 800lbs torque is more than enough for me - mileage, if there were any gains - would have thought Ford\GMC would have flashed the ECM to make it so.

Don't waste your coin since your purchasing a new truck - if it were 4-5 years old - then I would say go for it....
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Old 03-16-2011, 02:20 PM   #27
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I have a '02 Ford F350 7.3 2WD. My diesel guy, SouthEast Power in Tampa installed a chip last year for me. I also have the following Banks items:Trans Command, Turbo Elbow, Waste Gate and exhaust. Also an AFE air filter. After the chip installation I got a 1.75 mpg increase when towing on the +35 hp setting. I tow a '06 25' Classic. Around town I get 2.5 mpg on the same setting.

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Old 03-16-2011, 02:45 PM   #28
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Brian -

I would recommend getting to know your new rig for a year or two before looking into tuners, chips or that sort of thing. Once you get comfortable with it and are looking for some improvement, then I recommend that you go the route I have gone.

I'm looking forward to meeting up with you guys one of these days and seeing your new tv (and Lucy, of course. Oh and the family, too).

Pat
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Old 03-17-2011, 09:12 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS View Post
Changing the air filter on a gas engine can destroy the Mass Air Flow sensor
If you spray too much oil on the filter, it can coat the sensor and that's not good. Follow instructions closely and keep saying to yourself, "more is not better."

4Runner has had K&N filter for 60,000 miles and Tundra just about as long and no change in performance, so I believe the sensor is operating as it should.

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Old 03-17-2011, 08:49 PM   #30
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If you spray too much oil on the filter, it can coat the sensor and that's not good. Follow instructions closely and keep saying to yourself, "more is not better."

4Runner has had K&N filter for 60,000 miles and Tundra just about as long and no change in performance, so I believe the sensor is operating as it should.

Gene
Hi, this is exactly right; Too much oil or improper cleaning, isn't good.
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Old 03-22-2011, 02:17 PM   #31
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$3k won't even pay for a set of injectors, much less a transmission rebuild. There is no free lunch with "tuners" and the aftermarket suppliers will not disclose what is changed, and where, thus one is left to guess. These integrity of these components is affected by tuners.

300HP and 500TQ is MORE than adequate to tow any Airstream ever built or contemplated. The 4500 and 5500 series trucks that use the medium duty Cummins are de-rated by comparison to the hyped motors (and easily-manipulated buyers) in the light duty trucks which are our interest here. No one is complaining about "performance" among the commercial owners (as their interest is in long-life, predictable costs) and adding aftermarket magic boxes just makes service more problematic as time goes on. They don't, in other words, fit the decision tree of problem diagnosis. A wild card, a joker in the deck.

FE is better accomplished by improved driving skill, trip planning, elimination of idle time, etc. Truck spec is the greatest predictor of mpg (for a given driver) followed by terrain/climate. Once truck spec is set then bandaids that may reduce reliability/longevity are not the way to go to try and re-coup a small increase in mpg.

At $5/gl and an average 15-mpg, $3k doesn't represent even 9000-miles of driving. Spread over 5-years it is 1,800-miles year, or, 35-miles/week.

Continue your analysis. Sending money to strangers for a magic box is the answer to a question improperly asked.

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Old 05-22-2011, 10:06 PM   #32
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Brian,

If enhanced power is what you want, a programmer from Edge, Bullydog, Banks, etc. will most certainly deliver it for you. BUT, if the powertrain warranty on your new GM truck is important to you, do not add a programmer.

If I take my LMM or newer Duramax to the dealer with ANY engine, transmission or drivetrain warranty claim, the mechanic must first check for evidence of an aftermarket programmer. BEFORE any work is done.

First. The mechanic hooks the Engine Control Module (ECM) up the Tech 2 and takes a digital snapshot of the last 10 Calibration Verification Numbers (CVNs) or programming events.

Second. The mechanic goes to the Transmission Control Module (TCM) and takes a digital snapshot of the Max Transmission Calc Engine Torque. (Max torque for an LMM is 660 ft/lbs)

Third. These two digital snapshots are sent to GM for verification.

If a non-GM calibration is found and verified by GM, the remaining powertrain warranty will be canceled.

Can a programmer improve fuel economy by 2 or 3 mpg? Maybe, but I seriously doubt it. I agree with the earlier poster. If merely adjusting the ECM's program could improve fuel economy that much, Ford, Chrysler and GM would have done it long ago.

John
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Old 05-22-2011, 11:48 PM   #33
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~~~

Can a programmer improve fuel economy by 2 or 3 mpg? Maybe, but I seriously doubt it. I agree with the earlier poster. If merely adjusting the ECM's program could improve fuel economy that much, Ford, Chrysler and GM would have done it long ago.

John
I don't mean to be argumentative, just to add a little context. I'd say if merely adjusting the ECM's program could improve the fuel economy that much with no other undesirable effects the manufacturers would be all over it. You can enhance performance and/or mileage, but at the expense of longevity, emissions and/or drivability.
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Old 05-23-2011, 08:42 AM   #34
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Are you sure about the diesel. I pull with a diesel and like it. But I would not buy another diesel to replace it. The worry about the expensive engine failing, the extra cost for the diesel engine, the 50 cent premium for fuel, the high maintence costs, the stiff ride, and the convience of having a fuel injector replaced have dimmed the glow of the diesel for me.
I do not run a programmer.
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Old 05-23-2011, 09:49 AM   #35
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The cost of a diesel has to be put in perspective. My fuel costs, my maintenance costs, my cost of repairs have all been lower than with any comparable gasser when examined on a cents-per-mile basis. Not projected, but actual . . the projected looks even better.

It does matter what brand you buy, and model year.

For those replacing a vehicle every 5-7 years, anything will work well for this trailer type.

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