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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey guys, New to this forum. I just bought an '03 3500 with the cummins HO & a 6 speed. I am a mechanic by trade, but unfamiliar with these trucks. It has 116K on it & I intend to drive it into the ground, so I am going to keep it for a long time. I have read that these are the best trucks out there, & thats why I bought it. I have a few questions that would help me out a lot.

It is completly stock with the exception of a straight thru muffler, 8" lift, & 37" tires. Gets about 16-17 MPG that way.

1. Can I get a recommendation on regular vs synthetic oil? I generally use Rotella in diesels, but is synthetic better for the price?

2. How long can I expect the clutch to last under normal driving conditions?

3. I want to leave it stock for longevity, but what changes/ mods should I consider to get the best reliabilty/ performance out of it. I dont want to increase horsepower, & want to maximize fuel mileage.

4. I have read a lot about removing the lift pump & installing an in-tank pump, or an aftermarket pump on the frame rail. What is the best/ most affordable way to go about this? I will do the work myself, but I want something that will last a long time & ensure my injector pump does not fry.

5. I also think it is a good idea to install a fuel presure guage. How do I do that? Is there a kit I can buy & install?

6. Where are the problem areas with this truck & how do I correct them?

7. It doesnt want to start in cold weather unless I plug it in. Is this normal, or is there a way to correct this?

Thanks! :thumbsup:
 

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hydraulic lifter crew
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12,296 Posts
you need to go back and read the 3rd gen
forums. there is tons of info on all of those
subjects that members have posted up.

1. amsoil is held with high regard around here.
2. 125k - 200k miles depending on driving stle.
3. get a 65 hp mileage box + routine maintenance.
4. get a nice fuel system.
5. install the gauge when you get the new system.
6. the front ends and u joints are pos - prepare to replace.
7. no thats not normal. change out the fuel filter and run
a bottle of diesel kleen or similar through it.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Ya already got new ball joints & front axle ujoints. Gonna replace them next week. Any advice on how to make it easier?

What is a 65hp mileage box? What is a "nice" fuel system?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
fass or air dog.
quad mileage max
or edge ez. if you
wanted to spend
a little cash a smarty
jr would be awesome.

I appreciate all this info, but what does each item do. Can you tell me what I can gain by installing each of these items. I assume some of them do the same thing, just different brands? Just tell me what area or issue I am fixing & which item can fix it.
 

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Premium Member
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12,001 Posts
those boxes will give you mild hp increases and increase your fuel mileage by a good amount if you drive it good...they increase timing and fueling to give you more horsepower
 

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680 Posts
box, chip, programer.
Do some reading up and you will see. There little computer chips inside a box that alter what your ecm sees and how it repsonds.
 

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TECH SPECIALIST
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5,885 Posts
be sure to always use a PF7977 Baldwin fuel filter for maximum injector protection until you get your 2 micron system in. many still run the Baldwin as additional protection if a 2 micron has a media blowout.

here's a quality low cost way to replace the OEM engine bay mount lift pump that wears out shoe leather.

Walbro GSL-392 high volume
http://www.inlinefuelpumps.com/

lots of write ups on the forum for 2 micron + water separator commercial filter setups DIY

pump and filter setup in for less than $300

SL392 255LPH High Pressure
GSL392 255LPH High Pressure
GSL392 255LPH High Pressure
GSL392 255LPH High Pressure
 

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Master of Mayhem NASFIG
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8,816 Posts
if its already hard to start when its cold, odds are your injectors are going south.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
be sure to always use a PF7977 Baldwin fuel filter for maximum injector protection until you get your 2 micron system in. many still run the Baldwin as additional protection if a 2 micron has a media blowout.

here's a quality low cost way to replace the OEM engine bay mount lift pump that wears out shoe leather.

Walbro GSL-392 high volume
Walbro Inline Fuel Pumps

lots of write ups on the forum for 2 micron + water separator commercial filter setups DIY

pump and filter setup in for less than $300

So if I buy the pump, how do I eliminate the factory lift pump? Can I buy the block seperate? Do they sell a kit?
 
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