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2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins


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  #1  
Old 02-11-2012, 09:23:15 PM
Wayne 440 Wayne 440 is offline
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Default 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Finally trying to replace my old F250. Found a 2006 Dodge 2500 crew cab 8ft bed with the 5.9 Cummins, automatic and 4x4. It appears to be in reasonable shape and has 60K miles.

I would like to hear from you if you have a similar 2006 model. What issues are common with these trucks, things to look out for, etc. Thanks.
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Old 02-11-2012, 10:23:57 PM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

The most common issue with the 2500/3500 Rams is extreme front end rear in my experience with working (not owning) on them. There are no front unlocking hubs, so the front axle is spinning all the time. I've seen Ram 2500s with ~60-80,000 miles that needed both front u-joints, tie-rod ends, wheel unit bearings, and all ball joints replaced.

The front end problems seem to be hit or miss though. Sometimes they go 200,000 miles, other times they fall apart still within warranty. Just give everything a real good check over, check for slop in the steering wheel, and listen for any weird sounds, especially turning while moving.

The only other real issue is that the interior on those generation of Rams is just really awful. Cheap hard plastics, poor fit-and-finish, and uncomfortable seats.
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Old 02-11-2012, 10:57:28 PM
Andrew Mackey Andrew Mackey is offline
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Exclamation Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Pay attention to the frame, under and to the rear of the front seats. They have been known for stress fractures, especially if the truck was used for plowing. Shift the truck from foward to reverse and back to forward. Do you hear a clunk at the rear? With the truck in neutral, and parking brake on, or someone stepping on the brakes, try to rotate the rear drive shaft. If it turns more than 1/8th of a turn, it is probable that the sintered (hyper compressed powdered metal) spider gears are worn. Replacement can be costly, as both axles have to be pulled.
Andrew
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:09:01 AM
Jerry Christiansen Jerry Christiansen is offline
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

We bought a 2004 with 100k. 4X4, automatic with the 5.9. It now has 160K. Yes, we have replaced the front hubs. We have a 32ft toy hauler. When loaded the combination weighs in around 20,000lb. It just plain hauls the load. I have no plans to replace it. When the time comes, I will look for another one.

Jerry Christiansen
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:27:34 AM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

As with any used vehicle, check it over thoroughly, but that Cummins is just getting warmed up at 60k miles.

I have an '08 3500 with the 6.7 Cummins that is heavily modified and I swear sometimes I think I could pop wheelies with it! It will also tow anything I put behind it and not even break a sweat.
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:47:26 AM
Wayne 440 Wayne 440 is offline
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Unless I crawl under it and find the frame cracked, none of the issues named so far will scare me away from this one. I'm a bit apprehensive about an automatic and the torque that engine can make, and am not at all familiar with the 48RE transmission.

Thanks to all who have responded thus far.
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Old 02-12-2012, 01:05:21 AM
John Hanson John Hanson is offline
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Wayne, go to www.cumminsforum.com and do some searching there. LOTS of info.
I've got a '94 and LOVE my 12 valve, but the newer stuff is nice too!
JH
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Old 02-12-2012, 10:26:17 AM
Kenny Booher Kenny Booher is offline
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Wayne. Here's another good site.
http://www.dieseltruckresource.com/
We have a 96,97, and 01. The steering is the worst part, they don't drive as good as a chevy, but there are aftermarket parts that really help.
Kenny

(hello John)
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Old 02-12-2012, 10:53:58 AM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Every 4X4 I've owned needed front joints if I drove them in the winter. Actually they will likely last longer running all the time than with the old lockout hubs.

As far as the Dodge front end you have a Real Front axle, Not a Cheezey IFS system like GM. The Biggest steering issue I've had with my 96 was the track bar needed replacing at 155,000 miles. It still drives as good as a Chevy with 187,000 miles.

I did replace the front unit bearings not because they were bad but because I didn't want any failures out in some of the remote areas I go. 125 $ each from Rock Auto.

Since when was pulling the axles out of a Full Floating rear end a Big Deal...
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:57:52 AM
RSCurtis RSCurtis is offline
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

One of the problem areas for the '06 was the instrument cluster. Make sure all the guages, and espescially the tach, work properly.

Check that the HVAC functions all work properly, failure of some of the plastic doors is a common problem. Complete repair requires removal of the dash. Later Ford's also have this issue.

2006 had the last iteration of the 48RE transmission which is suitable for the use of an exhaust brake. Thr 48 is basically a 727 from the early sixties with an overdrive compounder on the back. They are very reliable at stock power.

I have belonged to the TDR for almost 10 years and never heard any incidence of a cracked frame or damaged spider gears in the AAM 11.5 rear end, even with trucks running up to 600-800 HP.

The front unit bearings can replaced with one of several free-spin kits that use conventional hubs and front wheel bearings. There will also be a fuel economy improvement.

Ball joints are a know weak point but there are several manufacturers who make a lifetime replacement. They are expensive.

The brakes on those trucks are very good. The engine also has no glow plugs or EGR system, two less things to worry about.

The two-piece drive shaft can be replaced with a single piece aluminum shaft as is used on the new trucks.

---------- Post added at 10:57 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:51 AM ----------

I forgot to add that I've owned an '03 since new. The interior is not as nice as the later trucks, but with the hubs and an aftermarket turbo, I can travel over 800 highway miles on a tank of fuel. Not too bad for a 7300# truck. Unfortunately, don't count on that from the '06, as it has a different fueling strategy and a different camshaft.
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Old 02-13-2012, 10:45:37 PM
Wayne 440 Wayne 440 is offline
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

The deal is done. FYI, those of you who forecasted ball joint replacement were correct. Time will tell on the rest.
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Old 02-14-2012, 03:08:42 PM
John Hanson John Hanson is offline
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

You'll love it Wayne! Congrats!!
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:01:59 PM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

We HAD a 3500 as a Light tow truck. Had a lot of transmission problems{5 spd. manual} & broke the frame on BOTH sides on different occasions.We bought it brand from dealer & they knew it was going to a towing co. & never said a word that it was TOTALLY UNFIT for this purpose. This unit was NEVER Abused & very well maintaned,it just wasn't up to the task of a REAL WORKING TRUCK. It would more than likely be okay as a grocery getter or for an URBAN TYPE COWBOY & PULLING a light to medium load, but not where the frame has to bear much of the load. We Finally got rid of it.
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Old 02-15-2012, 09:24:19 AM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

I had never heard of one breaking a frame before. My '98 3500 cab & chassis has a doubled frame.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:31:20 AM
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Exclamation Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

When I had my Dodge, It had 2 severe wrecks during the 10 years I had it. Both times, the frame had to be replaced, not the vehicles fault BUT: Both times, the repair shop gave me the info sheet on the replacement frame, from the dealer. Sheet read "part # ---- no longer available, due to recall - if frame fractures are noted, please contact --- for replacement. My first frame was cracked, under the drivers seat, old ones due to the rust on them, and the dealer came and looked at it. It was replaced gratis, even though there was severe damage from the wreck. The second replacement had cracked after the cab, same deal from Dodge, they paid for the frame. Apparrently they drilled too many holes in them to lighten it up, and the load on the frame broke it. Holes on frame 1 (original to truck) were on different locations from frame 2, and the 3rd had no holes in either location! I never plowed with this truck, but I did tow a light (5000#) trailer. During the 10 years of owning the Dodge, I also replaced 3 spider sets. The third set broke to pieces, without warning, and they took out the entire guts of the rear. Dodge made good on them, and the mechanic told me that Dodge had a problem with the company who made them. Pulling the axles out wasn't a big deal. Replacing the axle seals after 2 months of having the spiders done was - it took the same weeks worth of time to get the work done. Dodge will not replace anything they don't have to, unless it presents a problem. The seals weren't leaking when the truck was brought in, so they werent replaced. Obviously, dragging the axle out thru the seal must do some damage to it! If I worked on a rear, I replaced the seals as a matter of course.

Here is another pet peeve - Dodge dealers won't clean the work area on the vehicle. I had the heads replaced on a Dodge Caravan, about 10 rears ago, with only 200 miles left on the warrenty. When I got the vehicle back, it leaked oil from one of the heads. I noted that the 3.0 litre engine, although it had bright shiney new heads, was otherwise filthy. I was told by the service manager, that Dodge didn't pay for time cleaning the engine. Too bad They had to pay for another head replacement, as the one that was leaking oil had been replaced on the block with a new head gasket, and several 1/8" diameter pebbles and debris on the top that scarred the surface of the head bad enough to force its replacement. I was there for the tear down and saw the debris on the gasket when they pulled the head off. I asked the mechanic "Aren't you going to pull the second head to see if crap is under that one too?" "Nah, it aint leaking." was the answer. They were lucky the block wasn't ruined as well. I guess the heads were made of a softer alloy than the block.
Andrew
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Old 02-15-2012, 12:00:12 PM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

I would assume you had a second generation truck, possibly even a 1500 series since you talk about seal damage when removing the axles. The truck that Wayne and I are talking about is a completely different animal. That's not to say they don't have issues, but the frame and differential (11-1/2" ring gear) are not their weak points.
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Old 02-16-2012, 01:08:47 AM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

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Originally Posted by Doug Oldenburg View Post
We HAD a 3500 as a Light tow truck. Had a lot of transmission problems{5 spd. manual} & broke the frame on BOTH sides on different occasions.We bought it brand from dealer & they knew it was going to a towing co. & never said a word that it was TOTALLY UNFIT for this purpose. This unit was NEVER Abused & very well maintaned,it just wasn't up to the task of a REAL WORKING TRUCK. It would more than likely be okay as a grocery getter or for an URBAN TYPE COWBOY & PULLING a light to medium load, but not where the frame has to bear much of the load. We Finally got rid of it.
I have a '94 3500, 4x4, 5speed. The NV4500 5 speed wont take any pulling in 5th gear. It's a very well known weak point. In my opinion, it's not a good transmission for pulling heavy anyway, as the jump from 4th to 5th is big and not an even space. I put a NV5600 6 speed from an '04 in mine, and it's a world of difference! The final ratios are almost identical, so you're doing the work with 6 splits instead of 5. Sure made a difference in the way it pulls! I've never had any frame problems... and I do pull heavy.... a full steel 35' trailer and 5 Clydesdales in it, along with harness, etc...we weigh around 25,000 on a good day.... but I threw away the pickup bed and built some good mounts for my Bradfordbuilt flatbed, and I know that makes a big difference. I've seen alot of beds mounted poorly and frame problems. If I need heavier than that, I just take my Kenworth...it's made to handle a bigger load.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:57:25 AM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Actually ALL the First, Second and Third generation Dodge Cummins trucks had a Full floating rear axle.

The only problems with seals when pulling axles would be on the front axle as it would be real easy to wreck the seal as the shaft can drag on it.

Where the problem come in on the NV 4500 is if you lug the engine a lot the splines on the Fifth gear can work loose then the retaining nut loosens and the fifth gear slides back and you lose fifth I had a 3500 that was beat on the oilfields of Oklahoma and I replaced the clutch at 206,000 and as long as I had the tranny out decided to replace a couple syncronisers. I had to Make a strong puller to get the fifth gear off, it was that tight. So it didn't happen to all of them. The Getrag in the first generation wasn't near as durable although gears seemed to be better spaced.

I'm sure learning a Lot on this thread I personally knew a couple that ran a 2500 and a 3500 for over a Million miles each pulling commercial and they had Very Few of the issues mentioned here.
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Old 02-17-2012, 09:43:03 AM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Majeski View Post
Every 4X4 I've owned needed front joints if I drove them in the winter. Actually they will likely last longer running all the time than with the old lockout hubs.

As far as the Dodge front end you have a Real Front axle, Not a Cheezey IFS system like GM. The Biggest steering issue I've had with my 96 was the track bar needed replacing at 155,000 miles. It still drives as good as a Chevy with 187,000 miles.
:
I haven't heard that about a Chevy in a long time. Haven't they proven themselves with the IFS after nearly 25 years of production without many issues? I have a Suburban with 200,000 miles with all original suspension. My dually doesn't have near that many miles, but it rides nice and carries a lot of weight (big pickup camper). I remember putting in u-joints every 20,000 miles with the old solid axles.

I try not to abuse my trucks, but I do use them.
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Old 02-17-2012, 12:46:53 PM
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Default Re: 2006 Dodge w/5.9 Cummins

Well, Doesn't your IFS system use U joints? If not how do you turn corners?

Also did you ever watch a video of one of the GM IFS trucks in a truck pull? You will soon see why they have to beef up the tie rods where the solid axle trucks do fine as they are.

Come to think of it 90% of the weight of your Big Pickup Camper is on the Rear axle

I put the first front U Joints in my 96 at around 160,000 Miles. The replacements have Grease fittings, (Yes there is room) I suspect I won't need to change those.
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