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Diesel? Any regrets?

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  • Diesel? Any regrets?

    Another truck question - I have narrowed down my search to 3 pickup trucks - Toyota Tundra, Ram, and GMC Sierra (haven't driven the Sierra yet so not sure if it will stay or go....). A few people have mentioned diesel to me - that it would be a better way for me to go....better gas mileage. I'll be using it to tow a 2H bumper pull (looking at the 5.7L plus engine in all). Must have 4 doors and 4x4. But it will also be my family vehicle and drive to barn is 25 miles each way, several times a week on mostly highways.

    My diesel concerns are noise, smell and is it really more cost effective? I will only be towing a few times a month. Thx!

  • #2
    With current fuel prices it will be hard to make up the initial cost of the diesel engine with the higher fuel economy. Do you plan on keeping the truck a long time? (the diesel will last forever )


    • #3
      My diesel is twenty years old and has never let me down - never regretted owning it for a minute.

      However, if we were to buy a newer vehicle now, because we do not do the mileage we used to, then we would find a gas model cheaper to own. It would not justify the original extra purchase expense. Even though diesel is mostly cheaper than gas, and the truck goes further on a liter of diesel
      it would take too long to make up the extra $10,000.00 or whatever the diff is.

      It costs more to repair diesels, too. Modern diesels are not as dirty as they used to be and the noise is well insulated and I don't think is a factor.

      Sounds like you will not be doing the mileage to jusify the workhorse.
      Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


      • #4
        Gas prices are going to go back up, but diesel is its own separate cost issue. Good news is you can run biodiesel. Bad news is that diesel fuel of any kind is not available at every corner gas station in the city.

        Diesel is better for power and longevity and the mileage is better. It's also better in situations like tall grasses, worse in very cold weather.

        In the city, for just a two-horse, I would be inclined to do the gas engine.
        If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket


        • #5
          My only experience is with a diesel car and when in it I never noticed the noise or the smell. Also it had fabulous mileage and was very reliable. When looking for my next vehicle I'd buy another diesel in a heartbeat if I can find one I can afford. When I had the diesel car I was living in England where diesel engines are a very common alternative - unlike NA where they are extra expensive and rare.


          • #6
            Originally posted by tpup View Post
            My diesel concerns are noise, smell and is it really more cost effective?
            I've had my 7.3L Powerstroke for many years... love the noise and the smell is behind me

            Cost effective?? It was when I got it before diesel started going up in price. But, wouldn't get rid of it for the world now...
            You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something… S. Jobs


            • #7
              I don't think any vehicle bought new is cost-effective.

              That having been said, you tend to get more and better truck in a used diesel than a used gasoline. Diesel engines just last longer. Much longer. This is how they pay for themselves and then some over time. Buy new in diesel, I suppose, if you plan on keeping the truck forever. If you must have new, then lose less money on a gasoline truck, but plan on losing more frequently when you replace this shorter-lived vehicle more often.

              Do your research with respect to modern diesel engines. As they get more complicated (with computer chips and electrical devise used to move fuel around) they get more expensive to fix shouid you encounter a fussy one.
              The armchair saddler
              Politically Pro-Cat


              • #8
                OH, I misread that you will be driving to the barn, 50 mile round trip several times a week
                and that it will be your family vehicle.

                IF a smoking deal came up with a diesel, I'd consider it.

                Definitely do not forego the 4x4 - think of the times you may have to park in a field and can quickly walk it out if it starts to sink. I love the peace of mind in all weathers. 4x4 is not so good in ice, though. We plug ours in in cold weather, easier on starting that big engine.

                We are an all diesel fleet, I drive a VW TDI waggon, so I am biased for sure...but when we change our truck, because we don't do the big miles anymore, it will be a gas one.
                Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


                • #9
                  Originally posted by tpup View Post
                  My diesel concerns are noise, smell and is it really more cost effective? I will only be towing a few times a month. Thx!
                  Noise and smell are not anything that I ever notice.

                  Cost effective is a crap shoot. A diesel truck will hold a higher resale value longer than a gas will, and diesel is less volatile price-wise than gas. At one point this summer gas passed diesel around here in price. I'd also add that my truck gets close to the same milage as my medium size 4x4 sport utility vehicle and better milage than my old Tahoe.

                  You might want to actually put pen to paper with some math to figure out what some of the likely cost scenarios are--I bet the cost difference in some comparisons are a lot closer than you would think.


                  • #10
                    LOVE my diesel (7.3 L Powerstroke). Is it "cost effective" well, probably not in the short term. It DOES get better mileage than my gas truck did, especially when hauling, it is a POWERHORSE of a motor, oil changes ARE expensive, and repairs can cost a bit mroe than gas. But it does the job I want it to do which is to haul a 4 horse without even knowing it is back there!


                    • #11
                      Love my Dodge diesel. Nope, plan on keeping it for many years!
                      Its not noisy like some motors and I know that I am not underpowered!

                      I got mine for 10,000 off of sticker during a year end sale.
                      "My treasures do not sparkle or glitter, they shine in the sunlight and nicker to me in the night"


                      • #12
                        I bought used so I didn't have as much initial price to make up, but I do like my diesel a lot--in my area diesel is a little more $$ than regular unleaded, but the MPG is much better.

                        Noise doesn't bother me too much (it's a tad louder than my gas truck was, but really all trucks are loud . . .), smell also I don't notice much.

                        While people always say that diesels last forever, one point to remember if they are referring to the engine. All the other systems are the same. So your diesel will last 300K miles . . . only if you can get everything else to hold up.

                        In your shoes (using it as a daily commuter and minimal trailering) I also like your Toyota Tundra idea. Those are much more car-like and Japanese tend to be very reliable. Depends on how you prioritize your commuting/trailering.


                        • #13
                          If I knew I were planning to keep the vehicle a long time, and put a lot of miles on it, no question- I'd buy the diesel. I used to pull with an F250 that had a 460 engine- it was okay, and I had no complaints, but now that I have a diesel, I appreciate the extra torque when I'm pulling- especially up and down the hills here, and the 7.3L actually gets better mileage than the 460, so in the end, the fuel cost for the diesel is cheaper.

                          We have an F250 that has almost 450K miles on one of the 7.3L Powerstroke- we do maintain it well, and my husband did replace the clutch at 400K miles. It was my husband's work truck and has seen hard use- we'll drive it until it doesn't go any more.

                          My F350 only has 120K miles on it- I feel like it's just getting broken in, and I probably wouldn't trade it for something newer/different even if I won the lottery- especially now that I've added a couple of after market toys that I really like.

                          The diesel will hold it's resale value, especially it's a 4x4.

                          I have to say that the Tundra hasn't impressed me- I don't think it has the payload capacity of either the Ram or the Sierra- I have a friend who just traded hers for a used F250 (older diesel with the 7.3L) after owning it for less than a year- it didn't do well pulling on the hills, but in your area that may not be an issue.


                          • #14
                            I am on my 3rd F-series diesel, not because of any problems, just the fact that I have found great deals. The F-series diesel is a work horse, and I would not drive any other type of diesel. Not impressed w/ the Chevys or GMC diesels. They look good, but I don't think they tow as well. The Tundra, yeah it's a "last forever" Toyota, but I still wouldn't choose it to tow. The diesel has been low maintenance, and the noise is not an isssue like others said. Make sure you 4x4 drive. You never know when you might need it.


                            • #15
                              We always buy diesel for towing the horses - last a LONG time (over 200K miles is nothing to a good diesel, fuel efficient, reliable.

                              Smell? You don't notice it inside the cab as it's behind you. Diesel is now more expensive than gas (used to be the other way), if you live in a cold area (VERY cold) you might need to plug in the diesel for startup in the winter. Diesel's need the key turned, the start light to come on BEFORE you finish turning the key to startup, as the glow plugs need to be warm to start the engine.

                              Diesel is a LITTLE harder to find - not in the major highways (all BIG trucks - aka semi's - use diesel) but very small towns could be an issue. However big trucks (like F350's) have larger tanks/dual tanks to carry more fuel.

                              Is it right for you? Why not make a list of Pro's and Con's and see shich option has the most Pro's.

                              Oh - and since diesel's last longer than most gas vehicles they also cost a bit more ($1500 possibly more)...so perhaps if buying new do what we did - walk into car dealership and ask to talk to the fleet manager - do NOT talk to ANY salesman first. Fleet Manager make money by selling in large quantities, NOT commission, so that's where you'll save the most money (several thousand dollars).
                              Now in Kentucky


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Valentina_32926 View Post
                                Smell? You don't notice it inside the cab as it's behind you. Diesel is now more expensive than gas (used to be the other way), if you live in a cold area (VERY cold) you might need to plug in the diesel for startup in the winter. Diesel's need the key turned, the start light to come on BEFORE you finish turning the key to startup, as the glow plugs need to be warm to start the engine.
                                Actually not all diesel's have to wait to start. I have an '03 F-350 diesel and my trainer has an '07 F-450 and neither one of us have that. The glow plugs were switched in the Fords in I believe 2003 so that wait to start thing is a thing of the past for Ford.


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by molliwog View Post
                                  I used to pull with an F250 that had a 460 engine- it was okay, and I had no complaints, but now that I have a diesel, I appreciate the extra torque when I'm pulling- especially up and down the hills here, and the 7.3L actually gets better mileage than the 460, so in the end, the fuel cost for the diesel is cheaper.
                                  I had an F250 w/ a 460. We used to joke that I had to drive from gas station to gas station. The time spent filling up drove me nuts. (and getting in and out of stations pulling a 4H LQ). I love my Dodge diesel and the range and freedom that I have with the gas tank! and the power, I live on top of a long slow hill. It is hilly country. But I hate driving it in town, too laborious - it's a highway truck and it makes for luxurious road trips. High price to pay, I drive a beater around town - and I'm not complaining!!


                                  • #18
                                    my diesel is 9 years old and has 347k miles on it....no way would i do a gas truck
                                    "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"


                                    • #19
                                      It looks like I'm going to be the only one disagreeing on the diesel!

                                      I have an F350 Diesel and a Nissan Titan to choose from when hauling my 2H BP. I always choose the Titan. It is more comfortable, quieter, easier to find gas for, turns on a dime, and pulls my light trailer like a dream. I have hauled up in the mtns of NC and had no problem.

                                      If you were hauling a heavier GN, I'd say go with the diesel. Otherwise, for overall comfort and ride - the gas 1/2 ton is the way to go, especially the foreign one that is just as much designed for a smooth ride as it is for hauling.


                                      • #20
                                        Gas half ton? - I think that is a bit light for the type of hauling we do in BC.
                                        Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique