RAM 1500 Diesel Forum banner

1 - 20 of 67 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,683 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
It's NOT a 2500 with Cummins.

Been driving 2500 diesels for almost two decades. Before that it was the GM Heavy Duty 1500 with the 6.5 diesel for a decade. Towed up to 43 ft. tri-axle trailers and probably have 300,000 miles towing experience "on the ball". Maybe more.

Today I was told to haul my little 8 ft. trailer 25 miles and pick up a large dining room table and chairs. My guess is little more than 300 lbs. plus empty trailer, which is a typical metal one with grated gate I use to haul quads and motorcycles. First thing I noticed is the drop bar for the 2" ball is way too low. My 2500 hitch was at least 3" higher so that's something I will deal with later tomorrow.

Started out and went less than a mile. Did not like what I felt and reset fuel economy B. The truck felt like the parking brake was on. I had just towed that trailer to the truck with the quad. Bearings are fine. It rolls easily. You can feel the drag on this 1500. That feeling never left, empty trailer out or loaded coming back. My wife rode a while in silence and then said one word..."Flimsy". Think she was speaking of the passenger door but I have had that thought about the whole truck since I got it.

Now we are used to the 2500 4 x 4 Cummins. I kind of hoped it would not be this bad but it was. I told her the payoff for this drag and light feel would be with fuel mileage. The old Cummins would tow this trailer heavily loaded and literally give no indication it was there. That truck always towed around 20 mpg, only dropping to 19 when I had to run interstate speeds. This 1500 Ecodiesel was WORSE or no better than my old Cummins which pulled a ton more truck with twice the motor. Out and back I just got 19 mpg. That was the same run I did empty a few weeks ago, ran 55 and got in the mid-30's.

The truck struggles to hold a constant speed. Sure it was windy but the truck is definitely affected by the little load. Lord help my attitude toward it when I hook up the toy-hauler and do a real tow.

I am not doing a conclusion as everyone is different in both experience and expectation. "Just the facts ...just the facts".
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,337 Posts
Something may be wrong with your truck my friend, I picked up myy boat from the marina at lunch (regal 1800 LSR) and onto the hwy home my milage dropped to 22.7 mpg @ 110km/h but she towed no problem ya for sure you could feel it back there but the motor never lugged or had trouble at all... just my experience (355's and the boat and trailer I would guess would be 3000 to 3300 pounds)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,145 Posts
Drag: Does the trailer have brakes and does the truck have a brake controller?

Light feel: Level the load and report back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
735 Posts
If the transmission adapts to your driving style I wonder how it reacts when you then throw a load behind it. I wonder if tow/haul mode would be needed for even such a light load?

Agreed, something does not sound right. Yes, those Cummins will flat out tow, so expectations must be kept in check with this smaller engine, however I would have expected a more positive review with that kind of load.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,337 Posts
Also I did have tow/haul mode on, when towing my boat, I suspect it really wouldn't make that much of a difference though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,683 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Checked my emergency brake within the first 1/4 mile. Soon as I felt something not quite right it was my first thought. Going to deal with the trailer level as it was slightly pointed down. My 4" drop bar was too much. That will be corrected.

Did not use or think of tow-haul mode. Appreciate the ideas. It maybe that I am just too used to the heavier truck and admittedly, make comparisons to it continually.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
132 Posts
if I am correct your tow rating should be 7850, your truck is very similar to the one I ordered. I have been towing with my hemi (current truck), same rear end, quad cab and other than the coils it tows my 6000lb camper pretty well. I really hope that your disappointment is driven by your years of 3/4 tonne experience. must say you got me second guessing myself.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,337 Posts
I wouldn't worry woods.... they tow awesome!! I towed my boat today for about 25 km or so, no problems, lots of power, smooth and well over 20mpg!
 
  • Like
Reactions: JAK

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,683 Posts
Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Woodsman,

My toy hauler is about the same weight. Surprised I have not towed it yet but things keep interfering (like Easter dinner here for the grandkids instead of flat track racing in North Florida). When I do I will know. Right now my feelings are like yours.



Today I am re-doing all my tow bars. Four of them cover 2 5/16th with/without weight distribution and 2" ball ones for light and my heavy tractor hauler. All are TOO LOW for the trailers. Looks to be about 2 -3" low. They were all set up for my trailers and the 2500 Cummins I just sold. For those coming off a 3/4 ton pickup, that's something to think about.

Going to be real eager to get to my tractor trailer in Georgia and hook up. Huge tongue weight and I have no clue what the squat will be even with my Timbron bumper stops. Don't tow over 5 miles with it so it was not a game-breaker choosing the 1500.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
274 Posts
Another thing to consider is your 3/4ton was a 4x4 is the 1500 4x4? if not that's a few inches right there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,683 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
It's a 4 x 4 also. Actually the body is the same. When you look at the suspension and undercarriage you can both see and feel the difference. The 1500 in comparison, as my wife put it is, "flimsy".
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Maybe try Tow/Haul next time and/or try using manual gear controls. Does you truck come with steering gear controls near cruise control?
If it does, you can lock out the top gears with it. Also it allows to see what gear the truck is in.
So simply press GEAR- and you should see something like 5/7. 5 is the current gear and 7 is the highest gear that you allow truck to shift into. If you "limit" it to 8th, then effectively you are in regular automatic mode but you can see what gear your truck is in.

Your HD is manual, so you are used to full control of shifts. This truck seems to love to shift to the 8th to save fuel. I am also coming from manual 6 speed car, so I think shift patterns are largely the reason for your disappointment. Because 420 lb-ft is no joke, we just gotta force the truck to use it.

You might not be able to overcome the "flimsy" feeling compared to your HD 2500, but I think you can overcome any sense of sluggishness by using manual gear shifting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
236 Posts
I will say this, And I am coming from a 2011 3500 SRW 4x4 cummins and a 2007 2500 mega cab 4x4 cummins before that. My only down fall on this truck is that it sit so low to the ground when I hauled the law mower trailer the 1st day I had it I had my drop ball on and you can see in the photo how long it was to the ground about to drag it. All of my drop balls had to go. I had to go buy the shorter ones.

Now as far as drag you could feel a little drag when I had mine loaded with the 77 ford and the 3wheeler loaded on. But nothing like what you are saying and I mean I was slightly expecting it because after all It is a 1500. One of the reasons I added the timbren system and a reason I am going to add the aftermarket wheels and tires are because they are not HD tires and the wheels at least the 20" ones load capacity is a joke really. But like when I was talking to my dad his words was "you bought a car(pause) Its a 1500 what more do you want from it then fuel mpg" .

But over all I have hauled 15+K total truck and all with this truck, plus I have hauled the skid stir with grapplers on our heavy title trailer that weight combined was 8000k lbs on here. Using tow haul on with every trailer even the lawn trailer I have never dipped below 21 mpg and that is with close to 500 plus miles of towing and towing only. My worst mileage on the lie o-meter has been as low as 18.8 when doing a DEF burn.

I don't know if you are just holding this truck to a to high of standard or if maybe its a lemon. Could just be you felt like me when I got it in. Man it feels little cuz coming from a 2500 or 3500 Dodge Cummins since I was aloud to drive my dads 94 3500 5 speed 12 valve when I was 10 in the hay field. Either way I hope you have better results when you hook up your camper.

Keeps us updated
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13,683 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
TC...Thanks for the comments.

I had to re-do ALL my draw bars today. The "hook-n-book" one for the toy hauler was way too low. Moved it up to 25" and hooked the toy hauler to it. It then dropped 2" from tongue weight. Trailer looked level but the built-in level showed it down in front just a tiny bit. I checked my Timbren units and they were just touching the axle plate. Brake controller worked. Rear tires had 45 psi but squatted a bit much for my liking. A future short haul will be needed to check things out.

Totally re-rigged my big unit for the equalizer bars. Looks like that's what I'm going to have to use. Will have to fit the bars and clamps on the trailer also. I don't think the rear tires will take the tongue weight safely but not sure. Don't know the tongue weight. Not out of the question that I might have to replace the tires for ones with a higher weight limit. I checked. Mine are only 2,500 lbs or so.

Re-did both my simple 2" ball bars also. Both had to come up 4"+ to work with my other trailers. That's how much lower this hitch is from the ground than on my 2500.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
236 Posts
I know what you mean we had to do all the same to our trailers as well. The tires I'm looking at are E range with 3,800lb per tire. Also I've looked at black rims and chrome and they have ranged from 2500lb per wheel up to 3600lb per. Sad that we need to spend an extra $1500-$2,500 to put some real load ready tires and wheels on here that can handle almost double the weight. But at the same time it is a 1500 and they built it for comfort just as much or more than for towing.

I hope it tows better with the adjustments you made. And I would definitely run the tow haul on truck seens to get better fuel towing with it on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
I could see going to an E rated tire only because you want the stiffness of a 65/80psi tire. At 2500lbs each, the stock tires will more than handle the weight of any payload or trailer that can be safely hauled.

GAWR is 3900lbs for these trucks and a trailer with 1500lbs on the tongue is either huge (10k lbs+) or improperly loaded.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
396 Posts
Captainmal, it does seem like maybe there is something wrong with your truck. I had to read it twice but you were towing 300lbs? You should be able to do that with a old Toyota Tacoma and not notice. It seems like you have not like the way the transmission shifts and I think talked about drag from day one.
I haven't towed yet but I can't feel mine shift at all and when i let off it feels like I'm in neutral with hardly any engine brake at all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,320 Posts
I am eager to see what the toy hauler does. I want to be able to tow a slightly bigger and heavier travel trailer than I have currently. I am still on the fence between the 1500 and the 2500.

Sent from my SCH-I605 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,320 Posts
I could see going to an E rated tire only because you want the stiffness of a 65/80psi tire. At 2500lbs each, the stock tires will more than handle the weight of any payload or trailer that can be safely hauled.

GAWR is 3900lbs for these trucks and a trailer with 1500lbs on the tongue is either huge (10k lbs+) or improperly loaded.
P rated tires feel like towing on marshmallows. LT tires feel more secure when towing. I would be getting LTs myself.

Sent from my SCH-I605 using Tapatalk
 
  • Like
Reactions: TC's 1500
1 - 20 of 67 Posts
Top