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2013 DEF problems


jonathan1950

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Last year the boss bought two '13 Dodge cab and chassis trucks.  I ended up with one of them and the boss has the other.  My truck has been trouble free so far, but his has been to the dealership twice so far for def problems.  Both times it has been due to the wiring harness being ripped out, if you see the country we drive in you would understand.  Is there any fix to the def problem on a 2013 truck?  They are both stock, base models, 4X4, manual trans, even hand crank windows.  He will not want to add power, he just wants to not go into limp mode 100 miles from town.  Other than stop being so abusive to the truck, any advice.  Thank you.

 

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Interesting...

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Raceme tuner and 4" turbo back exhaust. Het rid of all the problems, gets better mileage, and is better on the engine. I have done around a dozen of them and everybody is happy with them

"Better" performance is really quite subjective. Better enough to ever pay for itself in terms of fuel mileage? Highly unlikely.

The DEF engines are running clean enough to run 15k mile OCI's, so they are light years ahead of the previous emissions systems.

His boss isn't looking for more power (as if 350HP isn't enough), so that's a moot point. Then there is the issue of the higher cylinder pressures associated with deleting the 12 and prior engines which has led to a large number of head gasket failures.

f it were my truck I would look into some skid plates and leave the emissions intact, along with a very expensive warranty that I already paid for.

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The only warranty that can be voided is the emissions and that is it. There is a law that makes the companies prove that aftermarket products caused problems. But when you get rid of the epa b.s. than you get rid of 99% of the problems. I have a couple of guys that were having problems plugging up. Since I did the deletes, they havnt had one problem. And 40 hp isnt going to cause problems which is the economy tune. I agree that the def trucks are better, but why have all the extra junk getting thrown back into the engine? I got one guy getting 7mpg better with his pickup. Will it take awhile to pay off? Yes. But you are also not sending raw fuel through the engine to keep the exhaust clean. The guy wanted options and I gave him the best one. The only other thing he can do is make sure to always run the exhaust brake, eliminate as much idle time as possible and run high idle if he has an auto.

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My cousin is a certified diesel tech at a large GM dealership and sees trucks come in all the time for warranty issues. First thing they do is connect the truck to the scanner, if there is any sign of the ecm being reprogrammed or any emissions equipment missing he has to report it to the service manager and then depending on the problem the owner is called and informed he will be paying for the repairs himself. If there is an engine related problem that can be traced back to the tuner, the owner eats it. This is federally mandated equipment and removing it is not only illegal but it is now up to the owner to prove the deletes are not the fault of his failure. Good luck going to court with Ram, or GM or Ford. Better have a lot of time and deep pockets. Also if you live in an area where emissions testing is required you are now out of compliance and will have to return your truck back to stock in order to pass e check. Another thing is you are comparing non SCR to an SCR truck. These new systems are the cleanest running engines of all the big 3, nobody els is able to stretch the OCI to 15k like Cummins has. Not even the early common rail 5.9 Or the VP or VE trucks have that kind of service interval. That means they are running CLEAN. Very Little EGR. A fraction of what the 12 and older non SCR ran. That is the reason for the DEF, to be able to neutralize the NOX externally without doing a stupid amount of post injection cycles.

IF one guy is getting +7mpg he is a rare exception and not what someone contemplating doing a delete should expect to see. Chances are they are going to be pretty disappointed when they experience a fraction of that in real world terms. It would be interesting to see your customers fuel logs.

Please don't take offense to my comments but someone who is considering the deletes needs to know both sides of the story. 12 And prior I would agree with your assesment. 13 And up is a whole nother animal and IMO the risk vs reward is far from worth it when considering the consequences.

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The problem is that the ranch is a long ways from town and twice now the DEF system has had problems.  He does not want to be 80 miles from town when the truck goes into limp mode and only allows him 5 mph!  He is not looking for better mileage or more power, he just does not want the problems with the DEF.  This is the second time the truck has been in the shop for the DEF system, the first time it cost him around $2,000.00 to have it fixed.  This time it has been in over a week, not sure when it will be done and will cost him at least as much as the first time.  The dealership will not warranty the repairs because they say that the wiring harness was torn up, so the boss is having to eat the repair work.  I am not against the DEF system, but so far it has been a huge cost and inconvenience.  I am not sure any amount of skid plates will work out here, we are in some pretty rough country?  They are a Ford family, but since they can not get a Ford truck with a manual trans, this was the only option, I would like to see Dodge work out, but so far it is not looking good.  He has commented that they might just have to go back to Fords and start running auto's?  We do not have emissions out here, heck, some of our trucks do not even have a license plate, so that will not be a problem, the problem is it keeps breaking down due to the DEF.

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Can you post some pictures of the damage? I'm very confused as to what is being ripped out. Nothing hangs below the exhaust so the picture that is being played out in my mind would have the exhaust damaged as well, regardless of whether the truck is stock or deleted, Dodge or Ford or GM.

Ford has the same emissions equipment with an exponentionally higher number of engine/fuel/turbo related problems so he is not going to get away from any problems by switching manufacturers. The auto trans in both the Ram and Ford are probably more capable than the G56. That never used to be the case but the last few years has really changed. Ford has always built stellar automatic transmissions capable of a lot of abuse, and the Aisin in the Ram seems to be very robust as well.

Would be very interested in some pictures, if you have any available, or at least a little more info as to what he is ripping out.

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Some of the neighbor ranchers have autos and it is a mixed bag.  The biggest issue is when we get stuck in snow or mud is is more difficult to be able to rock the truck back and forth to try and get out.  I do not want to say we are hard on equipment, but we are very hard on equipment.  I will try and find out what is being torn off, but Dodge will not fix it under warranty, all I have been told is it is the wiring harness has to be replace.  Our Ford trucks are V-10's, the only reason the ranch bought diesels is because that is the ONLY truck that was able to be ordered with a manual trans.  I will try and get some pictures, but not sure when the truck will get back from the dealership?  I am thinking with the problems the boss is having with the Dodge, the next time he goes truck shopping will be for another Ford gas, it might have an auto but at least it will not have the DEF on it.  I understand it is hard to comprehend the abuse trucks get out here.  The ranch trucks see maybe 1% pavement, the rest of the time we are on gravel roads, dirt roads or no roads at all.  I had a set of recapped tires on the Dodge that only lasted 15,000 miles until they were bald.  Our Fords go to the mechanics on a regular basis, so it is not unusual, but if not for the DEF the Dodge would be holding up pretty well so far.  I will work on pictures, as soon as his truck is back from the dealership.

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Thanks, I'm very interested to see the carnage. I grew up in Wyoming and spent many summers working on my grandparents 900+ acre ranch in Boulder so I have somewhat of an idea of the abuse that trucks go through. All my grandfathers trucks were much older, the newest being a 90 or 91 Ford. He had a 78 Chevy with a 5 speed for many many years. That truck went to the scrap yard with barely over 30k miles on it. He bought it new and it soent it's entire life on that ranch. Like your trucks it barely ever saw any pavement, mostly fields, tractor paths and dirt roads. I don't believe it was plated either as it seldomly left the ranch but even when it did Boulder is so remote nobody would have ever known the difference. That is actually the truck I learned how to drive in. I was maybe 12 or 13 at the time. He gave me lessons on the way to the hayfields and from there I was on my own hitching hay wagons and bringing them up a steep narrow switchback path out of the river bottom where we were bailing hay. To this day I can't remmeber ever being so scared than I was running that path for the first time. It got a little easier as time went on but it always had your attention! Some of my best child hood memories were right there on that ranch in the middle of no where. I've told the wife a thousand times if I'm ever lucky enough to hit it big my first purchase will be a piece of property out there. In my eyes it is god's country for sure.

Has your boss looked at the new 6.4 Hemi? I have heard many good things about those engines. While I don't have any personal experience with them I have read many good reviews on them. There have been a few head to head comparisons on them with the best that Ford and GM have to offer (kinda like how they do the comparisons between the diesels) and the 6.4 Hemi has outperformed the others in power and fuel mileage. They also are offered with a PTO if that would be of use to your boss. I would be surprised if they didn't offer those engines witha 6speed manual since it is still available with the Cummins. Even though the new automatics that are coupled to the diesel engines are the most robust they have ever been, it's a shame they don't at least offer the option.

Edited by diesel4life
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Yep, this place is remote also, a little bigger than your grandpa's place, but just as remote.  The big boss had to buy a house in town when the kids started high school as the only school out here is a one room class room that goes up to eight grade.  His mom would bring the kids out for the weekends, then back in town monday morning to go to school.

When they buy the next new truck it will most likely be a Ford, unless he starts having better luck with the Dodge and Dodge keeps putting a manual in the diesel.  The only reason they purchased the Dodge's is that it is the only truck that had a manual trans.  If Dodge does away with the manual in the diesel the it will be back to Fords.  We have a whole bone yard of Fords up on the hill, not much else in the way of other trucks.

I do not think a pto would matter to the ranch.  When we get stuck, even a winch is of no use as there is nothing to hook it to.  We have tractors and some heavy equipment if we need to pull stuff out, so I do not think a pto would be something that the boss is looking at?  From the sounds of it, even the gas Dodges do not have the option for a manual, I would think that if they did the boss would have gotten a gas rig, but they might and the boss decided to try the diesel.  Kinda glad they did, now hauling stuff to town does not take all day like when I have the V-10.

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