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Open Roads Forum  >  Tow Vehicles

 > 2005 Dodge Auto Tranny up Steep Grades

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Lurker52

at large

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:27am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a 2005 Dodge with a Cummins diesel and a 48RE automatic tranny. I have been towing my 13k 5er from Florida to Arizona with no problems. I am going to be heading north to Jackson Hole soon. I will not go over Jackson Pass. Here are the questions.

Here in Arizona and further north I will be pulling up very long and steep hills. 6-8% grade and as long as 10-15 miles to the summit. I always tow in the Tow/Haul mode. I find that my truck would slow as I go up these steep hills and want to shift out of the overdrive and as I built up speed shift back to O/D. It would then do this over again and again. I don’t think this is good for the tranny. Would it be better to in Tow/Haul shift out of D “Drive” to the number 2 gear and motor up these long steep grades slower and shift back to Drive after reaching the top? That is what Dodge says to do but they have been a little vague about this. I am interested in what others with my set up do.

My 2005 tranny allows shift to O/D but does not have a lock out on it like the 2006

Thanks for the help

donn0128

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:33am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Any time your transmission hunts for a gear it is building heat. heat is the number one killer of an automatic transmission. So to answer your question, YES manually downshift the transmission. As an alternative you might try pressing harder on the go pedal. That should also keep the transmission out of OD.





coolbreeze01

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:35am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You are on the right track. I take all my rigs out of OD when I'm on up-hills. I shift clear down to 1 on some really steep grades. Have fun.


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Gale Hawkins

Murray, KY

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:40am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree with your thoughts.

T/H mode is a PLUS. Being locked out of OD is a plus going up and down long grades.

Diesels like to pull hard but they still do not need to be lugged but as your concern shows it is your transmission that is the link that can get beat to death in the hills.

NO OD use in the hills saves the life of your transmission and brakes in almost any brand/type of vehicle in those driving conditions.

Computers are programmed for average driving conditions nation wide.

Greentreena

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:42am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

avoid the Teton Pass, it is way faster to go around it. It is a first grear hill.


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matt7591

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:51am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I avoid programmers for my needs but I have seen programmers to lock out OD for such a truck. I love my 2006, though I'd love the 6 speed better !

ScottG

Bothell Wa.

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:51am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

BTW, the next year in 2006 they made the T/H with two modes. The first is like what your 05 has and the second locks out OD.


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romore

Okanagan valley British Columbia

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:52am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I find selecting second on long steep hills and not trying to maintain normal highway speed reduces the annoying shifting. As was mentioned, that builds heat and is very hard on the transmission. With our smaller trailer behind the diesel it is seldom necessary.[emoticon]

ScottG

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Posted: 03/31/12 10:36am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It's best to take any diesel truck trans out of OD when you hit a steep hill. They may have the toque to pull it but it's a strain on the clutches.

boogie_4wheel

SLC, Utah

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Posted: 03/31/12 12:07pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As you loose speed and the 4-3 shift occurs, let off the throttle a little bit and maintain that slower speed. The truck will stay in 3rd unless there is a loss of load (start to level out or you back out of it). So if you are wanting to lock out 4th on a short flat spot before a second hill you have three options.

1. Live with it.

2. Go to your local dealership and have them flash the computer for the lock-out feature. You loose the T/H mode but do get to lock out 4th. I would personally rather keep the T/H feature.

3. BD OD lockout module for a little more than $120. Is an add-on module that allows you to lock out 4th and still use the T/H feature.

I would try to alter my speed in an attempt to reduce shifting to a minimum. Every hill and every load is different but I bet a majority of the shifts could be eliminated by a little movement of your right foot.

Going with T/H and manually selecting 2nd is another choice. You will be going slower (duh) but it does lock the torque convertor and will be a whole lot less work on the motor and trans.


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