We have a 2003 Dodge Ram 2500 quad cab 4x4 Hemi automatic 3.73. The truck only has 58k miles and well maintained but towing 5500 lbs the truck struggles, on hills it's in 2nd gear and on long steep hills will shift between 1st and 2nd and be down to 35 mph.. I am looking for advice on how to improve the towing performance. I am not looking for buy a diesel truck advice as I had a diesel and much larger trailer but down sized because of economy. I am not usually a fan of programmers or performance chips but do want better towing results. Any advice appreciated.
I don't own a Hemi nor have I ever, but I have to wonder if your truck is running properly if it is struggling that much with 5500lb behind it.
Other members here tow much more than 5500lb with Hemis and I don't recall reading too many posts regarding unsatisfactory performance.
Do you track your mileage? I have to wonder if there's something (clogged cat or fuel filter, overdue for a tune-up) holding your truck back from its full performance.
I track my MPG mainly to watch for a sudden drop in economy which would indicate a component not operating efficiently.
I politely disagree with Slated4; I've been there, done that with intakes, exhausts, chips, tuners, etc. and in my experience they make very little difference and can actually have negative effects (voided warranties, dirty intakes, loss of low-end torque, additional engine noise, etc)
BManning baking in Phoenix
2008 Ford Super Duty F250 XLT, 4x4, crew cab, 6.75' bed
5.4L V8 300hp/365ft-lb, 5sp Torqshift, 4.30 AAM gears
9400lb GVW 11200lb tow
2007 Volvo XC90 AWD V8
4.4L 311hp/325ft-lb, 6sp Aisin, loaded
6100lb GVW 5000lb tow
Just traded my 2004 ram 2500 4x4 hemi for a 3500 dually diesel mega cab. I was pulling a 29 ft jayco lot heavier than yours I also had the 3.73 rear end. Are you running in tow haul mode if not do so. I got 7.5 mph only reason I moved up was to get more stability and better mileage. Had one hill on the way to Bristol Tn that I couldn't get over 45 with engine at 5000 rpms. Might be time for a tune-up with that wieght you should not be having issues.
Thanks for the advice. The pedal is to the floor although I let up when it shifts into 1st gear cause it will push 6000 rpm. The truck is not in need of any Maintenance it is very well maintained. I do keep track of the mileage every tank gets very consistent 11.5 mpg in town, Freeway 15-16, Towing gets 8-9 mpg. I don't know if it's a gearing problem or what but it feels like 9000 lbs not 5500 lbs.
I agree with all the other posts here, you should have absolutely no problem pulling 5500 LB'S......i would reccommend a tune up and switch the gearing in the rear end! That will definately add some pulling power!
Only problem with switching gears is I have 2 sets being a 4x4 making that very costly, but it does seem more like a gearing problem than a engine power problem. Like I said earlier no tune up needed truck is in tip top shape and runs awsome just doesn't pull very well at all.