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Exhaust Brake - 2006 5.9L Cummins


freestoneangler

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Just did a forum search and do not see any specifics thread on my question... so if this has been covered, my apologies. I have a 2006, 5.9L CTD that I'm considering adding an exhaust brake. I tried to find some examples of what that installation looks like for an automatic transmission... not luck.

 

I see Banks make a system as does PAC which I believe is the company that makes the system on the 2007+ series Rams. I'd like to hear from anyone who has installed an exhaust brake on my year Dodge truck. What system did you choose, how do you like it?

 

I've been considering a 2007+ 3500 (maybe even DRW), and part of that motivation is the integral exhaust brake. But, we may very well end up with a smaller 5ver and my current truck may be just fine. Adding the EB to my existing truck may be the best option on the wallet... decisions, decisions.

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I had a 2006 Ram, diesel, with an inline PacBrake, cut into the exhaust pipe after the downpipe, that worked great. In the never-ending quest for a faster truck, there was an after-market turbo, head studs, valve springs, EFI live tuning, etc. It towed great down the freeway, just was terrible stopping. In the braking department, I had Powerslot rotors, and EBC Greenstuff pads on all 4 wheels as well as the PacBrake.

We're towing the 5'er in our sig which weighs in at 18k+

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Installed a PacBrake on our prior, 2006 SRW MegaCab. It replaces the cast bend on the outlet of the turbo. I installed the optional air compressor under the hood. The directions were very clear, and the install was done using hand tools in the driveway, in about 5 hours. The brake was sorely needed, as we were close on max weight. In the 2 years following installation, we had no issues, and my cousin continues to use the truck to haul his lighter 5er, some 4 years later. Tech support is readily available(I also installed their air bag kit, and used the support line to exchange some parts in hte wrong box).

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I installed a PacBrake PRXB exhaust brake on my 2007 Ram 2500 5.9 CTD when it was about 1 year old. I had access to a lift and the install was not that difficult. Mine worked flawlessly until I traded the truck only 6 months ago. Best mod I ever did to any truck. The PRXB is air operated and having the onboard compressor was a bonus.

 

I bought mine from a seller on ebay called "chucksahunter". Good honest guy with reasonable prices and fast shipping.

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I have that same truck, but with a manual tranny. About a year after purchase I decided I needed an exhaust brake and went with the Jacobs exhaust brake (MOPAR branded), installed by a Dodge dealer in Rapid City SD. The brake performed well. I usually left it on all the time, whether towing or not, except during rain. One of the components failed after a few years of that and I started researching repairs. I found out the exact same parts/kit were available direct through Cummins at a fraction of the cost. The mechanic I used to replace that part had only priced it at the nearest Dodge dealer. His jaw hit the floor when I instructed him to call Cummins and he got a price about 80% lower. If you go this route instead of PacBrake or other aftermarket, be sure to check with Cummins.

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The Exhaust brake on the Cummins works well. The main thing that you need to do with the automatic tranny is to install a switch to lock up the torque converter while in gear. I installed one in my 96 Dodge CTD and it really helps, I can choose my gear to go down a hill and lock up the torque converter and get really good braking.

I don't know how you would add a switch like that on your truck but with research you may find out how.

I can also lock up my tranny and torque converter going up hill, hold the gear and rpm with it all locked up and the truck pulls better and produces much less heat. That slipping torque converter is a real heat source.!!

 

Also, when you install the Exhaust Brake make sure you use it often, they fail a lot when not used, they get coked up and freeze up, then you have to clean it up before it will work again. I have fix quit a few for others that did not know why they did not work any more??

 

John

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Before you commit to an exhaust brake, check out the Banks speed brake. I went the speed brake route on my 2005 Duramax and it worked great. It closes the exhaust turbine blades to provide engine braking and it was basically a plug in harness.... no cutting or drilling. I spent The extra $$ and got the IQ which is the interface that allows you to make changes to how the speed brake works and displays an extra set of guages. IMO its a step above the exhaust brake.

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The Banks kit is an exhaust brake. The DuraMax had a variable vane turbo in '05, while the Cummins still has an old style fixed vane turbo in '06. All the kits for the '06 Cummins are essentially the same, with the major decisions involving the type of actuator (air powered or 12 volt) and mounting location. One manufacturer installs the butterfly under the truck, some distance from the turbo outlet, while others replace the cast elbow directly after the turbo. This location typically increases the speed of braking being felt. All the kits have the interface information to install a needed wire to the ECM harness on the engine. This wire is used to force the torque convertor to lock up under engine braking use, instead of free-wheeling.

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Ah...didnt know that the cummins had the fixed vane turbo.

 

Mine is the same year, but with the 6 speed manual tranny. I first started out with the Jacobs exhaust brake installed. It worked for a couple of years. Then i wanted more power, by the way of twin turbos. The problem was that the down pipe/elbow that consists of the Jacobs EB is good for a 4" exhaust. The Pacbrake is further down the system, and is good if you want to keep your exhaust 5" from the turbo back. When i upgraded to the Pacbrake, i noticed that it does work better than the Jacobs EB that came from Dodge,...so good that a couple of times that I was using it, coming to a stop, that I had pressed the clutch pretty quickly, and it killed the engine.

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Thanks for all the info folks! Still looking into options (to include buying a newer 3500 w/factory EB), but ran across this info from Banks and wow, makes a believer out of me how valuable they are for towing.

http://bankspower.com/products/show/268/6

 

PacBrake PXRB system offers no head to head comparison that I have found.

http://www.dieselpowerproducts.com/p-4495-pacbrake-prxb-exhaust-brake-kit-045-07-59l-dodge-cummins-c44045-c44047-c44052-c44051.aspx

 

Haven't yet seen if the other competing EB mfg.'s have data showing Banks being on the low end of the performance numbers, but will. One never knows if the data is skewed only because of subtle adjustment/tuning needed by each design and it being done so for the Banks and left at original settings for the competitors. I would have liked to seen how the Cummins factory aftermarket system (which, I believe is made by Jacobs) compares to these.

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Holy Macaroni's! I just got a quote for installing a BD exhaust brake from a local diesel truck specialty shop and that will set me back $2700 cabbages (w/tax). Then I asked about any other common performance changes folks consider and both the FASS ($1500) and Smarty ($1900) were suggested. $6100... that's roughly 1/5th of the trucks value.

 

OK, from everything I've read, the EB is a must have for towing a 5th wheel. The other items sound like great performance enhancements for horsepower and torque, but are they something really worth considering? My truck is just a factory stock, 2006, 5.9L CTD, 2500.

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My Pac-Brake went on in under an hour, only special tool I needed was a funny socket for the turbo to elbow bolts.

 

Fixed: http://pacbrake.com/supplemental-brakes/fixed-orifice-exhaust-brakes/

 

Regulated: http://pacbrake.com/supplemental-brakes/prxb-exhaust-brakes/

 

The regulated is really good at providing lots of braking at low RPM and would be my first choice, the fixed one does very well at higher RPMs but doesn't start out as strong at lower ones.

 

Only problems I ever heard about were when folks didn't use them enough and crud built up in the bearings and froze the butterfly valve. Use it several times at least once a week and you'll not have that problem.

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