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gatorguy
05-30-2013, 02:53 PM
So, I'm trying to decide if I should really buy a new suburban LT 2500 this weekend.

I currently have a 2010 Suburban LS 1500 4x4 with trailer package and 75,000 miles, 9 seatbelts (I have 7 people in my family and like being able to take friends in the extra seats), leather, blue tooth and DVD that I got new in 2011. When it was 4 months old it got rear ended infront of our house aand got $12k of repair to the rear including cutting off and welding on new rear lift gate frame and quarter panel, replacement of bent axle. It was in the shop for 2 months. Once it was fixed it hasn't given us a lick of problems. I tow to lake Powell with it every year (900 miles one way) and on the way the trans gets pretty hot as we go through the mountains. I use tow/haul mode, try to keep the speed down (75mph) and the trans temp <200F but there are always a few spots where it gets around 215F for a few minutes. When towing locally I have zero issues.

Last month we had a tornado roll through and put $7000 of damage on the suburban while we were in church (see the blessings you get while attending church). Needs new hood, roof, passenger front and rear quarter panels, PDR to doors, lift gate and left front quarter panel, and hub caps. The only thing original on the body will be the drivers front quarter panel. I don't like the thought of my truck being cut up and put back together. Things don't ever seem to line up exactly right, and eventually everything starts to rattle and squeek. I think this is a good time to pocket the insurance money and trade the truck in for a new one.

I don't like losing a seatbelt, but you can't get all the bells and whistles and seatbelts. (What, do the people who need to move a lot of people not like nice things?) I need 4x4 because we are traveling across country in the winter months every year, and as anyone who has been off the pavement in OK knows, if the red dirt here isn't dry, it is slick as snot. My wife has gotten stuck while dropping the kids at school on more than one occation and had to use 4wd to get out. I think the 6.0 combined with the heavy duty trans and cooler on the 2500 will stand the test of time for my long pulls across the Continental Divide.

So I'm worried that the 1500 isn't beefy enough to haul over the mountains year after year without cooking the transmition. I'm pulling a tandom axle trailer with a 97 PS205 loaded up with enough gear for a week at Lake Powell. I haven't weighed us yet, but I'm guessing boat and trailer are coming in around 7000lbs. Suburban is squating a fair bit with the load, because it is packed to the hilt too. I don't think I've exceded the total combined gross wt, but I don't think the thing was actually ment to pull the max wt for prolonged times. I would probably just get another 1500 if I wan't afraid it was undersized for the task. It gets much better gas milage than the 2500 does.

Am I up in the night, or should I pull the trigger. I wouldn't mind waiting for the '14s, but they are a complete redesing, and I am always leary of the first model yr of a new design. I have the insurance money, and I am stuck either fixing it or paying off the truck since I owe the bank still. I have been offered more than my pay off by the dealer, so I can pocket the insurance money if I upgrade now. I think the whole thing hinges on if I'm gonna kill the truck early by the way I'm using it.

willyt
05-30-2013, 02:56 PM
wait for a 2014. engine specs on the new 5.3 look much better.

Nick911
05-30-2013, 03:01 PM
Agreed. The 2015's are slated for early 2014.

gatorguy
05-30-2013, 04:04 PM
wait for a 2014. engine specs on the new 5.3 look much better.

I can't get one soon enough. Even if I put and order in today, I wouldn't take delivery until the end of July at the soonest. My powell trip at the start of July and I'd like to have this sorted before then.

CC2MC
05-30-2013, 04:46 PM
Order it and rent a vehicle. Although finding something with the seating and a trailer hitch could be an issue, but worth looking into.

Jason.H.
05-30-2013, 05:16 PM
You could alway keep yours and just add an external trans cooler and rear air ride suspension. Neither of which will break the bank or are hard to install and will probably add years to vehicle life. Thats what I would do since you are unsure of what to do now and can't get a new one in time. Just keep what you got until your sure of what to get.

Rossterman
05-30-2013, 10:55 PM
One word....duramax

clrussell
05-30-2013, 11:04 PM
One word....duramax

+1


Tapatalk

Jerseydave
05-30-2013, 11:13 PM
I've had an '07 Denali 6.2 liter and it was a good tow vehicle (better than my 2000 Suburban 2500 6.0 liter)
With that said, my F-150 Eco-boost is the best tow vehicle I've had yet. I believe there is talk that Ford may use that engine in a new Expedition. You may want to check into that. You really should test drive a new Eco-boost.....they are impressive. I've always been a GM guy....my last Ford was a 1988 Bronco!

VP46
05-31-2013, 12:45 AM
I've had an '07 Denali 6.2 liter and it was a good tow vehicle (better than my 2000 Suburban 2500 6.0 liter)
With that said, my F-150 Eco-boost is the best tow vehicle I've had yet. I believe there is talk that Ford may use that engine in a new Expedition. You may want to check into that. You really should test drive a new Eco-boost.....they are impressive. I've always been a GM guy....my last Ford was a 1988 Bronco!

I'm waiting for a new Expedition with the new engine. (I just need my wife to shut up about not wanting to wait).

Any idea when that will be coming out?

VP46
05-31-2013, 01:07 AM
Never Mind... Ford Dealer told my wife December!

zsqure
05-31-2013, 09:36 PM
Duramax, crew cab. 24+mpg hwy empty. you won't even know there's a boat back there unless it weighs 10,000lbs.!!!!

zsqure
05-31-2013, 10:33 PM
I forgot you said 9 people. Then find a diesel Excursion, but you wont see the mid 20's mileage as a DD.

liledgy
06-01-2013, 08:55 AM
I loved my 3/4 ton suburban.

1redTA
06-01-2013, 03:18 PM
The LT1 is back for the 2014 and is supposed to be a BEAST! As far as the trans temp get a tru cool trans cooler and you will be set in that aspect

Jerseydave
06-01-2013, 11:30 PM
I forgot you said 9 people. Then find a diesel Excursion, but you wont see the mid 20's mileage as a DD.

Only if the trans has been replaced/rebuilt already. I hear they all eat transmissions.

TayMC197
06-01-2013, 11:48 PM
Agreed, get the Duramax and Allison combo. You'll never have to worry again.

gotjag941
06-02-2013, 09:20 AM
Agreed, get the Duramax and Allison combo. You'll never have to worry again.

Can't go wrong with a duramax I will agree with that anyday

clrussell
06-02-2013, 10:03 AM
Duraburb... Solves both problems


Tapatalk

Thrall
06-02-2013, 03:45 PM
Since the diesel eveyone is reccomending is out due to seating requirements. Btw 24 mpg out of any DMax or other diesel pickup is not reality......at all.
Then go for the 2500 Burb.
I'm sure you've looked at the breakdown of trading in a wreck and taking the insurance $ vs fixing it, including whet you owe as well. And if trading the wreck in is the best choice then it's hard to turn down a 2500 burb for an all around kid carrier tow vehicle.

Cloaked
06-02-2013, 06:30 PM
.......... Btw 24 mpg out of any DMax or other diesel pickup is not reality......at all.
+ 1

I have been through three Duramax engines and if I could have seen 24 MPG, I'd still have my first one.

They are not what one would expect from diesel performance. Light performance for a light truck application...

Then there are the different engine models with different inherent issues, never to have been resolved....

LB7 -
LLY
LBZ
LMM
LML

I'm back in the GMC 2500HD Gasser...3.73:1 ........... waiting on GMC to put a 500 HP Cat diesel in a 2500HD.

If you want a 2500 Suburban, insist on the 4.10:1 gear if you want a serious tug....otherwise the 3.73:1 is a close front-runner.....

I had a Tundra (half ton) last year with the 5.7L 4.30:1 gear. Heck of a tug but too light in suspension and braking for my needs.... thus my current 2500HD 6.0L.

To the original poster (post #1), you are spot on with your assessment (IMHO). I too would prefer a 2500HD machine. The 6.0L has been stellar from my experiences.

.

bobx1
06-02-2013, 06:40 PM
http://www.sportsmobile.com/4_4x4sports.html

Problem solved. Diesel, lots of seats, and 4wd.

Cloaked
06-02-2013, 06:43 PM
http://www.sportsmobile.com/4_4x4sports.html

Problem solved. Diesel, lots of seats, and 4wd.
'Ford' made me laugh a little... problems just begun... :D

zsqure
06-03-2013, 08:13 AM
Btw 24 mpg out of any DMax or other diesel pickup is not reality......at all.
Never say never. '04 Dmax CC shortie 3.42 G80 rear Edge Juice box:D 24.5 MPG calculated by hand 245 size Fire-rag tires hwy tread. When I went to GY Wrangler 265 size mpg dropped to 21.5.
Had two, an 02 and 04. Both with great fuel mileage. The 02 is for sale with 260K. Don't buy it I don't trust the guy who is selling it.

DuraBurb
06-03-2013, 10:51 AM
Folks here from DuraBurb
This was a 6 hr trip on interstate 95

http://i1018.photobucket.com/albums/af309/DuraBurb/20130518_073824_zps278f1e0c.jpg (http://s1018.photobucket.com/user/DuraBurb/media/20130518_073824_zps278f1e0c.jpg.html)

Admittedly the true 2500 4x4 SUVs on the NBS get 21-22 this Denali has all the 2500 rotating hardware making it quite capable of pulling anything a typical family can throw at it but it is a 1500. I guess you could call it a 1500HD :)

Here is walk around video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEPsBbbYxcY&list=UUikeLGzl891UgeABbfK_tbA&index=1

This avg was was confirmed on paper as well and the client who had us build it sees the same also and is now having us build another exactly like it but black, in town is 17 mpg, so basicly you get minivan economy with a full size 4x4 SUV but with the added bonus of being able to blow the rear wheels off at the drop of a hat, we attribute the 1500's lighter weight over the 2500 for the added performance and economy over the 2500 SUV's we build. It is running a 450HP/725FTlbs DSP5 tune via efiLive but as you can see from the video footage below it acts more like a 600HP SUV.

Smokem' if ya' got em'
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yfaaj3JQEU0

Remember the DuraBurb moto
"you can have your cake and eat it too if you bake the right kind of cake"

Eric Swanson
DuraBurb Service Center

gotjag941
06-03-2013, 11:08 AM
Personally I have a 2012 gmc 2500 Denali duramax lml an I get 25 plus on the highway not towing bone stock in town 15 and towing a less than 8k pounds I get about the same pulled 23k pounds with it got 13.7 mpg

wakecumberland
06-03-2013, 11:19 AM
If you can't order the 2500 Suburban with the center jump seat, (which I know you can on the LS, would think they could do the LT too), then it can easily be retrofitted from a jump seat for the Silverado/Sierra. If you want 9 seat belts, you can get it.

I have had 4 suburbans, 3 of which were 2500 including the one I have now. I don't expect having anything else as long as I have kids and a boat. You just cant beat the 8.1 w/ 4.10 gears to haul the family and a wakeboat :) If you get a new one, the 6.0 will be your only option, sans Duraburb. Make sure you get 4.10 gears and I suggest a Blackbear custom tune. Really wakes it up!

bsloop
06-03-2013, 02:15 PM
8 people, plus a rear of full of gear, plus tongue weight is surely over the recommended rear axle rating on a 1500.
The gross GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating) is the combined weight on the front and rear axles independently.
Towing the described load at a "slow" 75mph is not doing any favors for the drive line as seen by trans temps. I would imagine with that many passengers, you have to make all the time you can between bathroom breaks but......make sure your trailer tires/bearings are up to the task as well.
Three other maintenance items people tend to forget are the brake fluid, Hydroboost and rear end. I was amazed how bad those fluids had degraded in only 4 years and 50k on my 3500 truck.

Beyond the weight "details", I bet you will have a much more solid feel with the upgraded 2500 frame. Yes, fuel mileage will be a penalty but less than another passenger :) .

With tornado, you are not specific if the damage was debris related or simply hail?
IF it was just hail, you might consider keeping the old burb for most duties though out the summer and let the heat's expansion/contraction work out the dents. I had 7k in shooter marble size hail to our Avalon and after 2 summers almost all damage was gone and I had a paid off vehicle. Even if you cant live with the dents, I would guess enough would work out you could get a much better sale price?

Take a 2500 test drive, go by home, pickup all the kiddos and load the rear full with cases of pop, water everything you can to add another 1000#+ to simulate summer load and tongue weight.
The answer will present itself......

TayMC197
06-03-2013, 02:51 PM
24 mpg in the duramax isn't likely, I've seen it once on the highway while drafting a semi. Most of the time I average 21-22 on highway. I've had 2 different duramax models. They've had what some call issues but I'd call it non favorable preferences. Never had an engine fail, any issue I've ever had I was able to go in my shop and fix or upgrade myself. Guess that's why I don't wear panties like some on this site seem to do.

Also if you want a 2500 Duramax suburban, guy in Florida does the conversation. Have 2 friends with these and they love them. Just add 15k to the price of your new suburban, or send him your old one. Considered this myself actually but I'd do it myself.

zsqure
06-03-2013, 10:24 PM
Tay, I had the 'skate wheels on it. I don't know what size is on the trucks now, but back when I had my 04 they were 245/75-16. That's how I got the mpg and I had a juice box that I ran on level 2 all the time. Had the truck for 92k and saw 24.5 all the time I had 255's on it.

gatorguy
07-28-2013, 05:58 PM
Did my annual trek to lake Powell a few weeks ago with my 2010 1500 suburban. It did ok, but the trans temp hit 214 at one point and I had to pull over for a while to let it cool. For the most part it floated around 200 while towing at 75mph. My RPM's ran between 3-4.5k in 3rd and 4th gear 90% of the time. I got into 5th gear a few times on the flats. I averaged 9mpg for the 1800 mile trip. The truck worked great otherwise, and all 7 of us had plenty of personal space. Most of the gear traveled in the boat, with most of our personal bags in the cargo area of the suburban.

Yesterday I stopped by the Chevy dealer in OKC and talked to then about a new ride. They said 2014 will be a split year. The first half of the year will be a continuation of the current model with some already on showroom floors. In about January or February the new model will hit, and carry a 2015 badge. From the front doors forward it will look like the 2014 silverado 5.3l v8 and interior dash included. It will have the new Chevy "my link" (think IPad) in the dash. HP, towing capacity and MPG are all supposed to be going up. There is a new trans with a larger capacity cooler, and the engine radiator and oil pan will both have increased capacity too.

I am hesitant to get the first yr of any new model, but at least they will have had a good 6-8 months of trouble shooting with the silverado before the first burbs are rolling out the door. So it looks like I'll hold out for a new ride for a few more months.

DuraBurb
07-29-2013, 10:28 AM
Yea Hold off, in 07 the SUB was a a bit of a bastard child, the only way we could get them right during conversion was to bring them all the way over to true GMT900, same problem we are seeing with the 2014 GMT1000, it will probably be a year or so before we can pump out those Suburbans Duramax style.