The Many Steps to Diesel Success

When I was a small boy I was live baggage on family trips from the Northeast to visit the grandparents a thousand miles away in Indiana. There were no Interstate highways – just the promise of the Pennsylvania Turnpike with its four smooth concrete lanes and many child-pleasing tunnels. The rest of the way was two lanes, small towns, and diners with steamed-up windows. Constantly in the way were highway trucks, only lately powered by weak-but-economical six-cylinder Diesel engines making 160 horsepower. Drivers knew what was next on their routes,…

About 2013-Current Ram Turbo Diesel DEF Systems

2013 Ram Cummmins Emissions Equipment

Background The Turbo Diesel Register editor called me a couple of months ago asking some questions about DEF systems. It seems that the folks at Geno’s Garage had been seeing an increase in phone calls related to the high cost of repairs to their DEF equipped trucks, specifically for the DEF emissions components. After our conversation, I did not give it much more thought and was going to cover another topic in TDR Issue 102. It just so happened that I was going to look at a customer’s car in…

’94-’02 Dodge Ram HVAC Service

Dodge Ram dash strapped up and out of the way.

I’ve been putting off replacing the heater core in Red Ryder (a ’98 Dodge Turbo Diesel) for a lot longer than I should have. I’ve been keeping a car blanket in the cab during the winter for a few years now. It generally takes about 30 miles at highway speed to bring the cab to a comfortable temperature when the outside ambient temperature is in the low-40s. I hadn’t observed coolant leaking in the cab…yet. On the return trip from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, in January this year there were some…

Which Dodge Ram Ball Joint Should You Buy?

Dodge Ram Balljoints

After installing a steering system upgrade, I visited a local alignment shop to check the toe-in specifications. Unfortunately, the shop refused to align my truck on account of a loose ball joint. I have known high volume tire stores to do this sort of thing to boost sales, but this diagnosis was no surprise, and it came from a shop that I trusted: After 150,000 miles, I knew it was ball joint replacement time.My analytical nature kicked in, and I decided to do some research before choosing my parts. I…

Dodge/Cummins Oil Filter Buyer’s Guide – Part One: Parts is Parts Right?

LF16035 Stratapore and LF3972 Standard oil filter.

Oil filters? Who cares? Just grab a filter from the auto supply store or Wal-Mart and put it on when you change the oil. That rugged Cummins diesel engine under the hood of your Ram won’t notice the difference right? Maybe so, maybe not. Are you willing to be the service life of your diesel engine on just any oil filter, or do you want the best protection for your engine? Going with the lowest bidder makes sense if all the suppliers sell the same item, like copier paper. But…