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Old 12-08-2022, 04:20 PM   #1
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2008 Dodge Cummins Maintenance Questions

2008 Dodge Cummins with 135K miles, in really great shape. I tow a 11,500 lb Desert Fox SW-21 toyhauler.

I was going to get a new Dodge truck to be my last new truck, but I think over the next ten years innovation may render diesel heavy duty pickup trucks much less attractive.

We've got some very experienced folks here and I hope I can get some good advice. I want to keep this bad boy, but I also don't want problems on the road.

I change the oil and lube chassis every 6k to 8k miles. Have flushed tranny three times. Have a Foss fuel filter system, change those two filters every 20K or so. I need to change the crankcase filter under the valve cover for the second time. Just had u-joints on front end replaced and new front rotors and rebuilt calipers installed.

What else should I be thinking about as preventative maintenance.

EGR system? Does this system require maintenance?

Injectors or injector pump? No noticeable issues or drastic drop in fuel mileage.

Turbo? Power and exhaust brake work like new.

I'd appreciate feedback as this Truck still does what it's used for very well. I'd like to keep it that way. My ego can deal with not running a brand new truck!

Anyone from the Portland, OR area with a trusted diesel shop?
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Old 12-08-2022, 06:46 PM   #2
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One of my fleet trucks is a 2008 CTD Ram. It now has 300,000 miles on it. Big ticket items have been two new turbos (egr soot gums up the VGT) and when the DPF filter got plugged and was going to cost $2k to replace, I deleted the whole system. Other than that, just the usual; a couple water pumps, wheel bearings, ball joints, brakes, etc. etc.
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Old 12-09-2022, 01:17 PM   #3
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If it were me, I'd get the front-end suspension/steering checked. At that mileage with a heavy engine, things start to wear abut then. Parts wear out so gradually that it's difficult to know until they get really bad.

Other than that, drive it!
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Old 12-09-2022, 02:03 PM   #4
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I think the old Cummins engine used in the Ram weighed around 1,300lbs. So agree with check front suspension parts.

The new trucks are really nice with their big screens and cameras that really work.

The older trucks are nice because they do not have all the pollution crap on them.
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Old 12-09-2022, 02:18 PM   #5
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I think the old Cummins engine used in the Ram weighed around 1,300lbs. So agree with check front suspension parts.

The new trucks are really nice with their big screens and cameras that really work.

The older trucks are nice because they do not have all the pollution crap on them.
Agreed; unfortunately the 2008 has all the pollution control crap (EGR, DPF, VGT) except DEF and the DEF might actually be an improvement as it significantly cuts down soot. the trucks with DEF have much better reliability with the emissions equipment. The pre-DEF trucks use a LOT of EGR which clogs the intake and causes more frequent regens.
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Old 12-10-2022, 12:20 AM   #6
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good luck finding anyone who will even touch that truck to do deletes, but if you still can, thats what id be doing. ive pulled egr tubes off the bigger cummins engines and chiseled out all the soot. you can probably have everything after the egr hot tanked to clean it out, and you can pull the turbo apart to clean out the turbine side where the vgt veins are. rebuilding a turbo isnt terribly difficult, or you could just replace when the time comes. pull the intake off and check the shaft for play, up and down and in and out. some up and down is ok, in and out is not so im told. after that id service the t case and the rears, ive heard the dodge t cases tend to play a disappearing game if neglected much. your best bet would be to just take it to a shop and pay them to give it a look over and see what they find. the shop i go to found a loose starter and a warped exhaust manifold.
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Old 12-10-2022, 12:24 AM   #7
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Agreed; unfortunately the 2008 has all the pollution control crap (EGR, DPF, VGT) except DEF and the DEF might actually be an improvement as it significantly cuts down soot. the trucks with DEF have much better reliability with the emissions equipment. The pre-DEF trucks use a LOT of EGR which clogs the intake and causes more frequent regens.
I got all the software updates over the first couple years and its not a daily driver. Never had a bit of emission equipment problems. Usually has a trailer behind it.
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Old 12-10-2022, 05:19 AM   #8
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I did not know that diesel trucks in 2008 had DPF but now I do. Thanks for pointing that out. The EGR is the other thing that is bad depending on how much exhaust it forces back through the engine.

I forgot that Ford had the 7.3, 6.0 and 6.4 engines in the early 2000's to fight pollution.

My understanding for DEF, that was introduced in 2011 for Ford and GM and 2013 for Ram. Ram cab and chassis DEF started in 2011.
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Old 12-10-2022, 10:13 AM   #9
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I got all the software updates over the first couple years and its not a daily driver. Never had a bit of emission equipment problems. Usually has a trailer behind it.
I think that running it hard/loaded is much better for them. Hopefully you continue to have good luck with your truck; mine has been OK but definitely had far more issues than my 2003 and 2004. Nothing wrong woth the engine just the EPA mandated garbage....I think manufacturer's have a better handle on the emmission stuff now and I have no plan on deleting my 2022 truck.
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Old 12-10-2022, 10:39 AM   #10
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Wait till the issues. start showing. Talked to the head diesel mech. at a ford dealership the other day. He said the 22s are having problems, and they are expecting the 23s to be worse.
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Old 12-10-2022, 10:46 AM   #11
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135K......that engine is just starting to get broke in

Continue with the normal routine maintenance and RUN it
*EGR System should be checked
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Old 12-11-2022, 04:48 AM   #12
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DEF systems on the newer trucks are prone to system failures that can put the truck into limp mode. The actual DEF does it's job just fine, but a DEF CEL puts you out of service in some cases and the repair is big $$$.
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Old 12-11-2022, 05:56 AM   #13
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The Fed does not want you to drive without DEF so any failure in that system will cause the truck to go into 'limp mode' then eventually shut down. I do agree that is extreme but what other choice do they have? If they don't eventually turn off the truck people would probably just ignore that warning. I don't really like that but I do like breathing cleaner air.

I drove a DEF'ed diesel for 6.5 years and will say I had no problem with the DEF system. Filling the DEF was however a very minor inconvenience.
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Old 12-11-2022, 12:52 PM   #14
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Wait till the issues. start showing. Talked to the head diesel mech. at a ford dealership the other day. He said the 22s are having problems, and they are expecting the 23s to be worse.
No reason for that; 99% of the drivetrain stuff is a carryover from 2022. Sure, there are some issues....ask him about a 6.0 or 6.4 PSD and see what he says. 😉

The complicated emmission systems are a PITA but they've gotten much better in the past 14 years
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