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Old 01-07-2013, 05:26 PM
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My dad is turning 60, so me and my mom are thinking of buying a new dodge ram 1500 for him. As the mechanic in the family I was sent to find out about it.

First question I have is about the Air Ride suspention. I noticed at the dealership that is a full airbag suspention, not just air shocks. I also learned it is supplied by an electric compressor. Working on semi trucks, I know air suspentions, what I want to know is how durable is the air suspention in the real world, especially here in canada where conditions are somewhat harsh.
how strong are the air lines. are they routed well. how durable are the air bags. does it have an air dryer or a moisture drain on the tanks. is the wiring for the electric compressor properly protected from the elements. Is the compressor cooled to prevent overheating? Also, are the componants for the air system: tanks, lines, compressor, bags, ect- easily servicable if they brake. is there a warning light or guage to monitor air pressure so you cant drive it without air?

Also, what about this new 8 speed transmission. how is it? any problems?

I know thats alot of questions, thanks for answering
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Old 01-07-2013, 06:08 PM
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You're asking a lot of durability questions of components that are being introduced on the model year you're considering for purchase, so I suspect you're not going to get a lot of experienced answers.

The air suspension is a closed type system that does not draw in fresh air during vehicle lifting or leveling. Instead, it moves pressurized air back and forth between an air suspension reservoir and the four air springs as required to raise or lower a specific corner of the vehicle. The air suspension compressor assembly includes an air suspension valve block, controlled by the ASCM. The valve block isolates and actuates the raising and lowering of each pressurized component using individual air lines for the air springs and reservoir. The air suspension compressor does have a filtered air suspension hose assembly for adding air volume if a component of the system loses its air pressure and is replaced. The compressor is not intended to replenish the entire systems air volume. There is a procedure for complete system fill using an external source if it is necessary; however, this should only be necessary if the air suspension compressor or air compressor valve block is replaced.

It's my understanding that the 8 speed trans is based on a BMW design that has been successful over the last few years but I have no firsthand experience with it yet.
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Old 01-07-2013, 08:28 PM
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Oh okay. I thought it was a set up like semi trucks that drew air in, and filled the tanks. Its more like an air pump that transfures air from the tanks to the bags.

as for the tranny, I guess ill just have to wait and see. were not going to be buying for a little bit.
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