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Old 11-30-2019, 11:30 AM   #1
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Diesel as a daily driver?

I'm looking into purchasing a newer diesel ('18 or '19) with low miles. I have talked to a tech that attends many auto workshops and conferences each year and he tells me that using a diesel as a daily driver is not good because it doesn't really get a chance to "work" like they were designed. I'm wondering how many of you that have diesels use it as your daily mode of transportation and how is it holding up?
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Old 11-30-2019, 11:31 AM   #2
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I'm looking into purchasing a newer diesel ('18 or '19) with low miles. I have talked to a tech that attends many auto workshops and conferences each year and he tells me that using a diesel as a daily driver is not good because it doesn't really get a chance to "work" like they were designed. I'm wondering how many of you that have diesels use it as your daily mode of transportation and how is it holding up?
65,000 miles, bought new April, 2016. Drive it like I do any other truck, with the exception of letting the glowplug light go out before starting.


Not any issues at all.
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Old 11-30-2019, 11:34 AM   #3
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I live on a seasonal road, and DD my diesel when one of the cars (always the Dodge, never the Honda) is in the shop or being worked on. It sucks. Takes forever to warm up and beats the tar out of me.

That said, I'm not a slave to my vehicles. If I need it to do it, then it does it.
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Old 11-30-2019, 11:42 AM   #4
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Daily driver here. It’s fine. Love driving it.
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Old 11-30-2019, 11:57 AM   #5
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Not so much here in the US, but there are millions of diesel passenger cars and light trucks in other parts of the world in use every day.
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Old 11-30-2019, 12:05 PM   #6
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Wifeís daily driver.

Basically breaks all rules.

Long warm up. Plugged in when temps are below 50 degrees. 1.5 miles to work. Towing a #15,000 fiver 4,000 miles per year. Only 12,000 miles per year total.

Since 2016 it has been flawless. Rides a little rough. It is a big truck. No warantee work except for a bed battery.

Mileage is 11 towing, 14 to 24 otherwise.

I change the fuel filters, $100 per year. Downside is oil changes cost more. $75.

Wife is happy. Our next truck will be another Ram/Cummins.
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:07 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by traveltrailerrookie View Post
I'm looking into purchasing a newer diesel ('18 or '19) with low miles. I have talked to a tech that attends many auto workshops and conferences each year and he tells me that using a diesel as a daily driver is not good because it doesn't really get a chance to "work" like they were designed. I'm wondering how many of you that have diesels use it as your daily mode of transportation and how is it holding up?
If you are never going to tow with it then it probably would not make sense to. Higher up front and maintenance cost is higher than a gas engine. If you mean it'll be your DD as well as your tow vehicle then go for it. Mine does double duty. 58000 trouble free miles except for a DEF heater that went out under warranty.
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:13 PM   #8
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Drive it like I do any other truck, with the exception of letting the glowplug light go out before starting..
That is Old School and not really necessary. The Glow Plugs are there only to assist in starting when the outside temp is cold. That engine will start without any glow plugs at all down to about -20 F
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:22 PM   #9
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Another DD here. 2018 Silverado 3500 dually Duramax. Also our TV. Love it. No issues at all.
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:29 PM   #10
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Daily Driver

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Originally Posted by traveltrailerrookie View Post
I'm looking into purchasing a newer diesel ('18 or '19) with low miles. I have talked to a tech that attends many auto workshops and conferences each year and he tells me that using a diesel as a daily driver is not good because it doesn't really get a chance to "work" like they were designed. I'm wondering how many of you that have diesels use it as your daily mode of transportation and how is it holding up?
The prevailing thought is that you should drive a diesel enough to warm it up. Theyíre not the greatest grocery getters if that is just a few blocks a way. Outside of that, Iíve had no issues for DD. The newer trucks shouldnít be left to idle for long periods of time as that has the potential to plug particulate filters.

Iím spoiled as towing with a diesel offers greater power and fuel mileage. The downsides are higher up front cost, slightly higher maintenance. I guess itís safe to say, if you donít need a diesel, stick with a gasser. Having said that, itís doubtful that Iíll ever go back.
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:32 PM   #11
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My Duramax is a daily driver. Never any issues for me. As long as the trip is long enough - - only 5 or so miles for me - for the engine to get up to regular operating temp, I don't see a problem. I also don't think occasional short trips will hurt anything.

Hang out at some of the diesel truck forums and you'll hear from lots of people - lots - who are DDers and have no problems. A common opinion on those forums (from what I've seen) is that not driving a diesel enough is way worse for it than daily driving.
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:37 PM   #12
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2016 F250, daily plus tow (26ft TT), camping ca. 15 weekends plus one two-week+ trip per year).
Generally good daily driving with exception of particulate filter often gets to "90%" with a warning to drive to clean it. Usually clears with our long camping trip, but I occasionally have done an extra 15 minutes at highway speeds to clean. (Not a fan of the filter at all.) Work is ~20 minutes away, city traffic, so varies.
As Bobcat Bob said, great for towing, higher up-front and maintenance costs (we bought the 125K mile pre-service and have found it cost effective), not as good for city driving as gasser. May go back to gasser if we stop camping, but not otherwise.
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:45 PM   #13
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That is Old School and not really necessary. The Glow Plugs are there only to assist in starting when the outside temp is cold. That engine will start without any glow plugs at all down to about -20 F

Yeah, but it's habit, and it only takes about 3 seconds.
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Old 11-30-2019, 01:58 PM   #14
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Diesel Daily Driver

Still have 2003 Ford F350 one of the last 7.3. Drove 130 mile round trip into the city for work. Bought brand new and now has 345,000 miles and still runs great. Besides being daily driver, it pulled my 37' triple slide out fiver and also worked on my country get away. Have Class A MH, sold the get away, but just can't let the old boy go.
Would not hesitate to go diesel as daily driver. Helps to maintain it yourself to keep the overall operating cost down.
Love my diesel!
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Old 11-30-2019, 02:20 PM   #15
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We have a 2013 F-250 6.7, did have an issue, it started cleaning the exhaust every other day. Took it to the dealer and was advised to not be afraid to take it out and drive hard once in a while, since then have had no issues. Dealer said diesels are meant to work, our issue was the grocery store was about 3 miles away and really never had a chance to bring the engine to good operating temp.
No problem being a daily driver just be aware to get it good and hot once in a while, best truck we've owned
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Old 11-30-2019, 02:22 PM   #16
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Diesel

I have a 2019 F350, daily driver. I usually start it when I first get in truck, then buckle-up and get everything ready to go. This gives the turbo and engine about 45 seconds to warm up, longer if it is close to freezing. No problems so far, 16 mpg. in town, 21 on hwy, and 13+ pulling 7800 V-front TT. Not the smoothest ride, but not bad.
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Old 11-30-2019, 02:22 PM   #17
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Years ago I attended a "maintenance conference" that was attended by reps from every major automotive diesel engine manufacturer.

The message was clear that diesels do best when running under loads near their optimum RPM.

Idling kills them. Operating cold kills them.

Comparing Pickup Truck Diesel's with passenger car diesels doesn't work. Passenger car diesels are far smaller and are working much closer to optimum RPM/Load than the larger engines designed to tow trailers.

This was especially true for the old 2-Stroke Diesels. Best speeds for them was either max governed speed or off. That is if you wanted to minimize port fouling. Drivers of trucks with the old 6-71's or 8V - 71's would control control speed by using lower gears and use either a hand throttle pulled full out or just hold their foot flat to the floor.

Those that drive them more than a few miles at a time and get coolant and oil nice and warm probably won't notice any issues. Those that use them to run to the corner store for more beer and never really get them warm-----maybe not.
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Old 11-30-2019, 02:31 PM   #18
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My 2017 Ram 2500 with the Cummins 6.7, while not driven every day, is driven quite often to run errands and do short (<100-mile) trips... never had any problems. Per the advice of a most excellent Mopar dealership, maintenance is done when "the computer" tells me. The only long idling it does is when the UConnect updates are being done. Oddly, I very rarely see the Regeneration message on the instrument panel... did it a couple of times when new, but now at ~28,000 miles, I have not noticed it.

Fuel economy (unladen) is 18-22 MPG in combined city/hwy driving. The OEM tires lasted to just over 27,000 miles; they may have lasted a tad longer, but I was late on rotation a couple of times. The tire shop guy said that, because of the increased torque at the rear wheels, the tires will wear slightly more quickly, even if I don't "goose it".
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Old 11-30-2019, 02:37 PM   #19
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Been my DD for 8 years. F250 6.7 with 133k and 2019 F350 with under 10K. Have 2 work trailers plus 33' 5th wheel. Probablyly 80% of the time hauling air. Slept overnight in it several times, would leave SD for AK and not shut it off for 4 days. Never had any real problems just did the DEF heater and as precaution replace EGT probes on the high mileage truck. Very happy with diesel as a DD and will not change until age forces me to.
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Old 11-30-2019, 02:49 PM   #20
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I had an F250 with a 7.3 (2002 model) that I drove for 14 years. Traded it in on my current F350. The service manager at the Ford dealer where I traded liked the F250 so much that he bought it for his dad. I drive them both like I would any other vehicle with occasional hard work they were designed for. No problems out of either one of them.
BTW....the F350 crew cab dually with 8 ft bed gets better fuel mileage than the 2002 F250 that was an extended cab and short wheel base srw.
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