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Old 04-16-2005, 04:47 PM   #1
Nat
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I pulled my 11,000 lb 5rv for about 3500 miles in the last 2 weeks. I hate an automatic transmission. The power is amazing, I pulled from central NC thru SC,GA,AL,MISS, LA, TX hill country, then north thru OK, then east thru AR, TN, and till I got into the NC Mountains, it never thought about dropping out of overdrive. It only did 2 times in NC. once coming out of the second I-40 tunnel and again going up the backside of Black Mountain. You will never need any more power than that.
Now for the downside, I find that I work the throttle nearly as much as with the straight drive to get it to shift up. You can pull out on the interstate from a rest area and accelerate fine till you get to 60 or so, then it will stay right there at 26-2700 rpms and won't change till you let off. If you take off up a small grade, unless you really get on it, it doesn't want to change from 2nd to3rd, then from 3rd to 4th. If you take off fairly hard it will shift ok, but I don't want to take off " fairly hard " to often. I had it back to the dealer and the trans checked out fine.
I havn't checked all the totals for the trip yet, the trip computer said I was getting 13-14 mpg anytime I checked, but on actually figuring I'm only getting 7-8. I tried running 70, then 65, then 60 and even went 55 with the tow haul button in and it never got any better.
I got 13-13.5 with my last diesel at 70 mph.
I want my old truck back, with todays fuel prices I can't afford to go anywhere!
Anyone have any insight?
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Old 04-16-2005, 04:47 PM   #2
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I pulled my 11,000 lb 5rv for about 3500 miles in the last 2 weeks. I hate an automatic transmission. The power is amazing, I pulled from central NC thru SC,GA,AL,MISS, LA, TX hill country, then north thru OK, then east thru AR, TN, and till I got into the NC Mountains, it never thought about dropping out of overdrive. It only did 2 times in NC. once coming out of the second I-40 tunnel and again going up the backside of Black Mountain. You will never need any more power than that.
Now for the downside, I find that I work the throttle nearly as much as with the straight drive to get it to shift up. You can pull out on the interstate from a rest area and accelerate fine till you get to 60 or so, then it will stay right there at 26-2700 rpms and won't change till you let off. If you take off up a small grade, unless you really get on it, it doesn't want to change from 2nd to3rd, then from 3rd to 4th. If you take off fairly hard it will shift ok, but I don't want to take off " fairly hard " to often. I had it back to the dealer and the trans checked out fine.
I havn't checked all the totals for the trip yet, the trip computer said I was getting 13-14 mpg anytime I checked, but on actually figuring I'm only getting 7-8. I tried running 70, then 65, then 60 and even went 55 with the tow haul button in and it never got any better.
I got 13-13.5 with my last diesel at 70 mph.
I want my old truck back, with todays fuel prices I can't afford to go anywhere!
Anyone have any insight?
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Old 04-16-2005, 07:59 PM   #3
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Thanks for sharing... As I am gettng the Bug on a new (or NEWER) truck... I am Concidering the CTD, along with another Pwr Stroke, The CTD I have been concidering is the 6 speed, however I am liking the the new torque shift. FWIW Catagorie... no lock out hubs on the Dodge... I use low range when backing up and because of some turns I hate to have the front end bind because its engaged. Both Interiors have many +++'s I like the fact that both still offer a Manual X-Fer Case. SORRY GM Guys ...I'm not much for breakaway plastic Beds or Rice Motors... no I am not flaming your truck just not my cup of Saki..
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Old 04-16-2005, 09:14 PM   #4
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Nat, we need a little more info on your truck. But from what you stated you are running too fast, ste the cruize at 63mph and let the computer do it's thing.
I tow heavy with the 3.73 gears on a short bed and get 12-13mpg all the time.
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Old 04-17-2005, 04:15 AM   #5
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Super, My truck is a 2004.5 Dodge 3500 SRW 325hp 600 # torque with the 48RE auto. This is the first automatic I've had. It may seem like I'm trying to pull to fast but I'm comparing to what I pulled with the straight drive. If I put my foot on the accelarator and took off normaly, and let the computer take over, I,d still be in 3rd gear as I take off up a slight incline and this stupid thing wouldn't have changed to 4th if you don't move your foot. You will notice in my post that I tried to run anywhere from 55 to 70 mph and none of them produced the expected milage, where-as the 2000 Dodge would consistantly average 13 pulling the same 5rv and would be running 70 mph.
I quess the whole problem is I don't like the automatic and probably never will. I bought it because my wife wanted me to give my knees a break as they are wore out like the rest of me.
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Old 04-18-2005, 05:50 AM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Nat:
I pulled my 11,000 lb 5rv for about 3500 miles in the last 2 weeks. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I have the same problem that you do with the automatic. Dealer says it is normal. You will find that with mileage, the MPG will jump up. My travel trailer is around 8000 pounds, and I get around 13 pulling the trailer. I set the cruise around 60 or so. I don't get in any hurry pulling. I had a powerstroke before, and what I miss more then anything is the low end grunt that the Ford had over the Dodge. Edge products cured that problem. I also had a different exhaust system put on just before the trip we are currently on, so I won't have MPG numbers before we get home.
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Old 04-18-2005, 08:42 AM   #7
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There was a thread similar to this a while back...

Dodge came out with a reflash to reprogram earlier 2004.5 Cummins engines to improve fuel economy, and correct overhead cosole milage display. There is a TSB on it, and it should be free under warranty. Most folks I talked to got about 3 mpg improvement.

This Link has the details.
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Old 04-18-2005, 12:19 PM   #8
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Jeff beat me to the reflash issue.

As far as the mileage goes, I am a little surprised to hear you say you varied the speed by 15mph and didn't notice any change. I've noticed as little as 5mph.
My trucks are both 6 spds (not an automatic fan) so I can't help you there. I have heard good things about the Ford Torqueshift, but then again I really like the increased low end of the Cummins compared to my old Powerstroke.

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Old 04-18-2005, 12:49 PM   #9
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My mpg varies but hand calculated last tow of my 9000lb trailer I averaged 12 mpg at 65 mph steady cruise control on for 110 miles.Overhead said 12.5 mpg.I came from a gashog so these numbers are respectable to me.I do have the auto and the 4:10.I keep the tow haul off.I cant seem to get used to the tach coming close to redline at 65 - 70 mph.
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Old 04-18-2005, 01:55 PM   #10
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With just my 5th wheel I will get 12.5 -13.5 mpg. With another 4k behind that I'll get around 10.5 - 11.5mpg. I've heard that the TSB reflash will help quite a bit. The 48re can take a beating until you start uping the power. I went with an aftermarket tranny from SunCoast and it is now bullet proof. It tows like a champ and I can run more HP's through it.
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Old 04-18-2005, 06:07 PM   #11
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I don't understand it, I had the reflash done. The first full tank , not towing, it went to 18, nearly. Since the first tank after the reflash,I havn't rechecked. The trip computer always shows 15-16 even towing till you hit the reset button, and then it shows 7-7.5. If you go back to th compass/temp, then back to milage it will show 14 or so. but checking by hand it will get 7-8 mpg. Surely the dealer wouldn,t just lie about doing it, I've known him a long time and don't think he would.
On setting the cruise, I tried that and it will jump to drive at every overpass, then slam back to OD pretty hard. I don't think that would be to good for it. Am I the only one that has one that does this?
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Old 04-19-2005, 07:06 AM   #12
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by Nat:
I don't understand it, I had the reflash done. [QUOTE]

If I remember correctly, I think the TSB said that the dealer was suppose to put a sticker on the the door, engine, someplace that said the flash had been done. On our big trucks at work, the sticker goes on the door piller.

Yes, the Dodge's shift hard. I remember a tranny mechanic one time telling me that it is better if they shift hard then soft. Something about slipage. There may be a trans mechanic that can help with this. What I know about automatic tranmissions you can put on the head of a pin. When I bought my powerstroke, this guy told me that every 12,000 miles, bring the truck to him, and he would backflush the system, replace the filter, and there would be no problems with the Ford tranny. And, in almost 100,000 miles, there wasn't. So, that is what is being done with my current truck. And, my powerstroke had the superchips reprogramer done soon after it was bought. Good luck...
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Old 04-19-2005, 08:06 AM   #13
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">On setting the cruise, I tried that and it will jump to drive at every overpass, then slam back to OD pretty hard. I don't think that would be to good for it. Am I the only one that has one that does this? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

When it is in cruise it will keep adding fuel in order try and maintain the set speed so it may be shifting down and up at nearly full throttle making for some fairly violent shifts. I find my boost guage really handy when using cruise. When I get up past 10 PSI boost I will take it out of OD myself to avoid full throttle shifts when I don't want them. With 3rd generation trucks 10 PSI might not be the best number but it works well with my 2001.
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Old 04-19-2005, 08:25 AM   #14
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Nat,

I think there is still something wrong with your truck. The 04.5's seem to get slightly less milage than mine (cadiladic converter, more power) but they shouldn't do that bad.

I think I would take it back to the dealer. Perhaps there was a hiccup in the computer and it didn't accept the new programming.

Anyhow, if it were me, I'd bring it back to them and let them know the overhead computer is still way off (mine is right on) and the milage is still very poor, and let them check it out.
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