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Old 10-19-2016, 06:51 PM   #11
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Ford does some weird things with their newer transmissions regarding downshifting and braking.. 5000 rpm bothers me more than it does the engine or tranny. :-)

I have a rule thats served me well driving through the Rockies. I never go down a hill any faster than I could go up the hill.

On my 2001, yes, I manually downshift and slow down to find a speed where I'm not building up speed, and the engine is turning around 4500 rpm and doing the majority of the braking. This means slowing down, manually selecting a lower gear, turning on the four way flashers, and enjoying the ride.

There's no sense in smoking the brakes where they get so hot that I find myself using one of those "Runaway truck ramps"
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Old 10-19-2016, 07:06 PM   #12
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#1 reason not to use just your brakes - they overheat and fail
If you have been using your brakes on a long steep downhill stop every 2-3 miles and check your brakes. First use the back of your hand near the lugs without touching. If you feel the heat the brakes need a rest.

Running the engine for short periods 1000 RPM below it's red-line is not an issue.

Waiter21 has it right, go down no faster than you went up.

Many vehicle have a downhill braking mode when in cruise control (my 2006 E450 does). If cruise is on and set to 50mph it will shift and adjust the engine to do it's best to achieve 50mph on a downhill grade.
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Old 10-19-2016, 07:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crookedread View Post
Obviously this is a gasser so comments from diesel drivers really have no bearing. I crossed a 6200 foot pass with my tundra towing a 7800 pound toy hauler. I knew before I crested the hill that I didn't have any trailer brakes. Slowed down, geared down and never saw anywhere near 5000 rpms. Sustained, that's too high for me! Used the brakes intermittently without worry about over heating! I had plenty of reserve to come to a complete stop if necessary.

Just came over same hill with diesel on tow haul and exhaust break on. Never touched the brakes.


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Right, none of us "diesel drivers" have ever towed with a gas engine....

Sigh!
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Old 10-19-2016, 07:19 PM   #14
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Truckers have always stated that what ever gear you ascend the grade with is the same gear you use to descend that grade. One thing about the new generation of diesel trucks offers a exhaust brake as standard now. This is a great asset when descending a grade.

The new Ram trucks with the Cummins Diesel engine has a nice feature. When the exhaust brake is activated and the cruise control is activated this will hold the truck at the set speed with load as you descend a grade.
X2 to a point.
As a CLASS A CDL license holder, you will want to be in a lower gear going down hill then you would up the hill.
Use stab braking techniques "apply your brakes to 5 mph below your safe speed, release brakes , coast to "accelerate" to safe speed and repeat"
In newer trucks, the tow/haul will allow the engine brake to work when applying the brakes in combination with a lower gear, even with gassers. Never downshift on a manual tranny going down hill, you could get stuck in neutral.
The last thing you want is the brakes to get hot enough to get brake fade. (They stop working).
Always keep an eye out for escape ramps.
Be safe out there.
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Old 10-19-2016, 07:43 PM   #15
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There is a brake pad available that is semi-metallic and ceramic....more heat, the better they work
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Old 10-19-2016, 07:55 PM   #16
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There is a brake pad available that is semi-metallic and ceramic....more heat, the better they work
Not being argumentative, but wouldn't the increased heat caused from the friction on the ceramic pads be detramental to the rotors, causing warpage and decreased braking capacity? We are all learning here.
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Old 10-19-2016, 07:57 PM   #17
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Just throwing this out there.. drilled and slotted rotors with pads all four corners. Under 300.00 way under.
I run them on all my stuff and started using on our work trucks I confirm improved millage.
Just felt that all the talk of brakes here this may be of interest to some.
Happy braking. Click image for larger version

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Old 10-19-2016, 07:58 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob caldwell View Post
There is a brake pad available that is semi-metallic and ceramic....more heat, the better they work
Working better "hot" is only true to a point, brake fade (actually catastrophic failure) occurs when the brake fluid heats to boiling. At that point you cannot apply enough pressure to stop the vehicle.
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Old 10-19-2016, 08:05 PM   #19
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Old 10-19-2016, 08:10 PM   #20
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Two trip across the Rockies at 17,500, haven't had rotor or drums going out of round....and, was on state and county roads with a lot of switch backs
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