programmers for added fuel milage

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by grassmasterswilson, Jun 22, 2011.

  1. grassmasterswilson

    grassmasterswilson LawnSite Platinum Member
    from nc
    Messages: 4,943

    What is the deal with programmers? I'm not very much of a car guy, but have heard some guys talking about programmers and chips in their trucks to get more power and better mpg.

    I have a 2007 chevy 2500 duramax - the last model and engine before they went ultra low sulfur. I put about 12-15k on it each year. 85% is around town pulling a double axle trailer with 1-2 mowers and all the extras. I'm only getting 10.7 mpg.

    I would like to get something to make the mpg go up and save a little, but don't want to mess up the computer or add to the serviceing of the truck. If anyone has a make and model of a programmer that they like and would recommend I would like to know. Also where did you get it.
  2. mowerbrad

    mowerbrad LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,268

    There are tons of places you can get programmers online, that's probably going to be your best bet unless you have a local shop that specializes in diesel truck performance shop.

    I would highly suggest getting a programmer that you can install and uninstall the tune as needed. A lot of times, if you are still under warranty the dealer will decline any warranty repairs if you have a tune/programmer installed on your truck at the time of service. As long as you can do the programmer yourself, you can take the tune off prior to going into the dealership.

    Through my research when I used to have a diesel truck, Banks is probably the most highly recommended programmer on the market, but that name comes at a price (about $1000 for your truck). Other brands that are popular are Edge and Bully Dog along with a few other brands. Personally, I feel that when you buy a programmer, this isn't something that you want to be "cheap" with as this purchase could protentially damage your truck.

    Programmers typically have a few different power settings. Most stock trucks really can't handle anything over the 1st or 2nd level without starting to wear something out on the truck unordinarily quick. However, the 1st and 2nd levels on programmers will typically gain you just a little extra HP and torque as well is increase your fuel economy. As long as you stay with a real mild tune, it will just firm up the shifts a little and maybe change them around slightly...but you really shouldn't have too many problems. You will definately want to make sure you have a transmission temp gauge to make sure your tranny doesn't get overheated with any additional tune.

    You have to be smart with a programmer. If you don't have the proper modifications the higher level tunes should never be used as they will just end up destroying your truck.
  3. South Florida Lawns

    South Florida Lawns LawnSite Platinum Member
    from usa
    Messages: 4,784

    Look up EFI Live and PPE for your Chevy. The banks/bully dogs go on the wife's truck.
  4. dieseltech

    dieseltech LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 651

    Efi live is amazing for chevy's but i would only go that route if you want power. Look into ppe as they are nice for chevy as well as edge. An edge juice with attitude cs or cts will give you a monitor for different parameters of the engine such as exhaust gas temp boost readings and so forth as well as giving you different power levels adjustable on the fly. The mild settings and tow settings will increase mpg without putting out too much extra hp to do harm to the engine.
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  5. TNGrassCutter

    TNGrassCutter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,321

    I have the edge cts on my 05 Duramax and I get about 4 more mpg on fuel economy setting. I get 18 unloaded, and about 15 loaded 16 foot trailer 2 mowers.
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  6. J&R Landscaping

    J&R Landscaping LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,095

    Edge tuners have been known to cause tranny's to over heat and to ruin fuel injector modules. Be cautious with them, EFI live or PPE would be a wiser choice. Banks also has some nice stuff.
  7. dieseltech

    dieseltech LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 651

    Banks is ok... Ive run edge programmers for years and not had one bit of problem.
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  8. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,511

    I would not recommend Banks and whoever said Edge overheats transmissions and destroys injector modules has no idea what they are talking about.

    Yes you can get a couple mpg's out of your truck with a tuner. The way tuners make more power is by advancing timing, increasing duration, or increasing rail pressure. Too much timing advance is bad, too much duration causes smoke, and increasing rail pressure too much is hard on injectors. It's all about moderation and having the supporting mods you need for the size of your tune.
  9. bearmtnmartin

    bearmtnmartin LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 342

    Programmers and work trucks do not mix. They are all designed to add performance at the expense of reliability. If you do not work your truck hard or ever tow with it, you might get away with it, but probably either you or the next owner will be buying an engine or a tranny early. Remove or reduce restrictions like emissions equipment and mufflers to make them more efficient, but don't play with the fuel and timing program. BD power is just down the road from me, and there is no way that those guys in that little warehouse are out engineering the guys at Cummins or Ford. There is always a trade off. Just my opinion of course, but I did form it after airmailing a rod in my Chev and watching my brother eat up 3 trannys and a motor. He even managed to kill a 7.3 powerstroke. All thanks to programmers.
  10. poolboy

    poolboy LawnSite Silver Member
    from earth
    Messages: 2,408

    Same thing the owner of said recently on a local radio program.

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