Opinions on '98 GMC 2500 with 6.5 turbo diesel

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by Triple R, Aug 24, 2005.

  1. Triple R

    Triple R LawnSite Member
    Messages: 244

    I am looking at buying a '98 Chevy 2500 lwb reg cab with a 4 speed auto and 6.5 turbo diesel. It has high miles (201,000) but asking price is only $4k. It belongs to a construction company and was told that they are replacing it and that it wasn't used for towing anything, they said there are no problems with the truck. I will be taking a look at the truck Friday will purchase if I don't see any major problems. Any opinions and anything to look for? Thanks in advance.
  2. Ironmower

    Ironmower LawnSite Member
    Messages: 69

    The 6.5TD is a rather strange animal. Some people have had great luck with them, and others, not so great. The best years for the 6.5 TD were the 93-94 with the mechanical injection, as the electronic injection system from 95-2000 were plagued with electical gremlins. Beware of what you could be getting yourself into.

    I briefly had a '96 3500 6.5TD back in '98 and in my opinion, it was an outright dog. The only thing it had going for it was 18mpg when empty, but it was a gutless wonder when it came down to pulling a good load.
  3. Scapegoat

    Scapegoat LawnSite Member
    Messages: 249

    Did you end up buying it?
  4. Triple R

    Triple R LawnSite Member
    Messages: 244

    Turned out it was a '99 not a '98 and it's a lot cleaner than I expected for a work truck. Yes I bought it and drove it home 250 miles with no problem until a few days later when a light in the dash said I had water in the fuel. I took it to a shop and was told the fuel filter was dirty and had water, also that it was running on off-highway diesel. I guess since the truck had been sitting for over 6 months it must have built up condensation. So far the truck is running great and I am getting better fuel mileage than my old truck which was 6 mpg.

    The only reason I bought this truck was because the price. If I would have had more money to spend I would have bought a Dodge with the Cummings. But I have already spent over $10k in the last couple of months on mowers and I am solo by choice, fired the employees before I upgraded the equipment and downsized in order to make a bigger profit. Now I work less net more with less hassles and no debt.
  5. Brianslawn

    Brianslawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,002

    you founf a 6.5 with that many miles? OMG!! still paid twice too much

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,426

    The 6.5 was a Russian Roulettte motor. Some I have talked to got well over the 200K yours is at. Some could not get 100K out of them. We never had GM diesels in those years, they were all gas.

    With an 88 through 99 series GM truck, you get the worst brakes in the history of vehicluar engineering. I would feel safer with cable actuated brakes on a Model A pick up. How they ever got approved for mass production is beyond me.

    Since you purchased the truck already, it will behoove you to yank the front wheels ( do the rears too but they are not as critical) and check the front pads, but best to do all corners. The anti-lock brakes pulsator is best completely removed and/or by passed as the ratio in the system was 90% over front, 10% over rear. Anti lock brakes should be outlawed and are for people who have too much vehicle for their driving abilities to begin with, and that system was the worst so it is best to bypass it alltogether, our brakes will wear much better annd the truck will stop with authority.

    We used to put in a set of pads and turn rotors every 10K, and you will be lucky to hit 15K. Th rear shoes wore at 1 time for every 4 times of the front pads. And this was the norm. Sad part was Dodge used the same brake system. You could interchange the pads.
  7. Brianslawn

    Brianslawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,002

    as for the brakes... had a rotor break in half and lock the front wheel. luckily it happend right after turning into the auto parts store parking lot were all my buddies work. BTW i got a 6.2 & not 6.5, same POS gas to deisel conversion. on second engine. got to put new bearings in this one. only buying ford from now on.
  8. jgtxusa

    jgtxusa LawnSite Member
    Messages: 123

    The 6.5 and 6.2 were not gas to diesel conversions. The 5.7 back in the early 80s that they put in buicks, caddies, and gm trucks was the conversion. We run all ford diesels for the most part, but I have a 95 Z71 with the 6.5 and a 99 3500 with the same. The 95 has 285,000 miles and runs like a top. Research the problem that everyone has with these trucks, cutting out, will not start, high idle, flat wont work, and you will find out they are all controlled by the same item. The little black box on the side of the fuel pump, I think Chevy calls it the pmd module or elec pump driver or something, sits in the valley of the engine and catches all of the heat. It fails and the fuel system acts like it short circuited and went to hell. I looked around when mine started doing it on both of these trucks about 3 months apart in the summer and found a kit that you can buy to mount the module to the firewall. I ended up just making the aluminum bracket and a pigtail and the trucks have run perfect for about a year now. These trucks are about gutless with a load, but cheap and run pretty good. Holler if you have any problems and ill send pics.

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