Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-03-2023, 11:49 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Oct 2023
Posts: 1
6.0 E350 upgrades

Picked up a 06 6.0 E350 with SMB conversion in July of this year. Have 6 kids had a 15 duramax tired of taking two cars so got the van idea to carry all the rugrats and tow the boat. But thatís where my question comes in to play the power. Whatís the best way to get more towing power out of this van? This van has a bunch of upgrades already done just if there is anything missing that Iím about to say it would be appreciated to hear. Van has 6 inch lift on 35s and has been bulletproofed. ARP studs bulletproof oil cooler from bulletproof diesel as well as bulletproof egr. Has 4 inch exhaust turbo back. Upgraded alternator. Mag hytec trans pan upgraded tranny cooler. 4.10 gears built out from an ambulance kit heavy duty. Previous owner kept every record of everything ever done. Had a sct tuner at one point back in 2012 but it appears that has been since put back to stock. Is that all thatís needed just a tuner or is there other things not mentioned. With current setup living in Los Angeles I tow my boat 300-400 miles up various grades. I notice temps climb very fast so I constantly find on decent grades cruising around 40 mph to keep temps down mainly oil cooler. Temps hit around 215 220 is highest I ever took it. Egts stay decent around 800-1000. Would just a simple tow tune be sufficient or would I run into higher temps due to more fuel. Do any of you recommend a egr delete? And help is appreciated thanks
Attached Thumbnails

SoCalsmb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2023, 10:57 AM   #2
Senior Member
Twoxentrix's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,225
This in info that has been pulled from many different conversations here over the years, but gives you an idea on what to be aware of...the most important is regular FLUID maintenance, and utilizing Oil & Fuel additives to protect your engine (EX: Fuel additive: Amsoil Diesel Injector Clean / Cetane Boost / and Howes 103060 Treat-Diesel conditioner with each fill-up. For Oil: I alternate every other change between Archoil & Turbo Maxx)

Engine Oil: every 5,000 Miles
Transmission: Every 20,000 miles
ENGINE COOLANT CHANGE: Every 15,000 miles
Transfer Case: Every 20,000 miles
Differential fluid: Every 30,000 miles
If you have 4x4: Wheel Bearings & Hubs greased every 30,000 miles
Power Steering & Brake Fluid: every 50,000 miles
Have the AC System charged every 2 years
Have the Van “lubed” every 2 years
Have an Alignment done every year or two (depending on how much off-pavement driving you do)
IF SPORTSMOBILE: Follow the alignment specs in the Owner’s manual – if you don’t inform the shop of these special spec’s then your driving characteristic will be completely off.

***It's really going to vary between vans ( Weight, Gearing, Tire size), but here goes anyway:
• ECT: 200-225F
• EOT: 210-230F
• TFT: 200-240F (stock cooler)
• TFT: 150-180F (Tru-Cool 40k cooler)
• It's really a range depending on ambient temperature, hills, type of driving, and what mods you have. If your stock, as long as your EOT-ECT spread is less than 15F your golden. Don't get too worried if your ECT is 220-230F. Diesels like to run hot and the vans run hotter than the trucks...Biggest issue is the tranny getting hot. The above portal thread is a good read.

Assuming a stock tune and and coolant thermostat.
• Engine Coolant Temp (EOT)
• 180* Engine Map is in various warm up or EGR regimes. Explains why you feel more power and trans shifts at lower RPMs above 180*
• Around 212* thermostat thinks about opening.
• 218* thermostat opens fully.
• Fan will cycle noticeably above 216* ish BUT depends of other temps, measured load, and A/C pressures.
• Fan will fully engage and not cycle above 226*
• These temps seem to vary a little depending on van, so don't become mindful of hot coolant until you're seeing sustained ECT above 228*. One thing to be aware of when running hard is that it cools down quickly once over the pass, etc. Hottest I've seen 230* for a few minutes.
• Engine Oil Temp (EOT) should be below or 6-10* above ECT / 12*or more above ECT I would start to consider a restricted oil cooler.
• Rumor has it that a EOT above 236* will shut the motor down.

Trans Temps
• If your trans has a thermostat it will open at 160*. Some 5r110's don't have them. You will get a wide array of what is ideal trans temps and where to measure the temps from. My opinion is sustained I'm comfortable with under 200*. My trans (John Wood) with larger cooler and fan lives most of it's life between 164* and 180*. Highest I've seen with this setup is 192*.

Now - after reading all this;
I have a heavy Van (challenges 12k lbs, 4:56 gearing, and 35" MT Tires) so the engine works harder to move that weight. I was also concerned about higher temps on steep grades, slower 4x4 crawls, and have found the following upgrades helped tremendously to manage all my temps;
***Mishimoto aluminum Radiator
***Mishimoto Low Temp Thermostat (The stock thermostat essentially restricts your coolant until your engine temp gets to about 216 - The Mishimoto will fully open much earlier, this helps max circulation which actually allows the temps to run cooler)
***Derale 15870 Hyper-Cool Extreme Trans Cooler w/manual dash over-ride switch
***5-Star Tune (I use the 50hp tune), and I had them add a program that would kick the fan on earlier than what the OEM was programed to do. Believe they adjusted this so my fan now engages about 6 or 7 degrees earlier, but because of these mod's I've made the fan doesn't come on very often...just when I start stressing the engine, and that's exactly when I want/need it most anyway).

Here is my history before/after these mods For comparison:

HWY Travel: Coolant = 214-216 Steep Grades: 222-230 NOW: 198 -210
HWY Travel: Oil = 218-222 Steep Grades: 225 -231 NOW: 202 -220
HWY Travel: Trans = 185 - 190 Steep Grades: 200 - 210 NOW: 170-182
EDIT: Once I installed the Derale Trans cooler (it was installed so fluid flows through it before it reaches the radiator) the Coolant temps dropped about 3-4 degree's - which in turn helps Oil temps.

You do want to keep EGT's below 1100 as much as possible, and if you get into the 1200 range, it should be for a very short period of time (under 1 minute from what was explained to me). Best way to lower EGT's is to drive your RPM's up a bit (down shifting accomplishes this)
Hope this provided some insight.
Twoxentrix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2023, 11:50 AM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2023
Location: Harrington, WA
Posts: 117
A tow tune like 5 star should help shift points, and apparently fan engagement according to @twoxentrix. I also think the thermostat mentioned would be beneficial, especially in SoCal. It might create a longer warmup cycle in cold regions, but I doubt it would be that noticable.

Your numbers sound pretty average, just watch those EGT's.
In my truck my TFT is usually 140-180, when it gets above 200 I pay attention. For cooling transmission temp moving at light load (even high rpm) is way better than parking and hoping it will cool down on it's own.

I'm not a huge fan of Mishimoto radiators, if yours is still intact and not leaking I would run it for now.
kbeefy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2023, 12:52 PM   #4
Senior Member
Twoxentrix's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,225
Originally Posted by kbeefy View Post
I'm not a huge fan of Mishimoto radiators, if yours is still intact and not leaking I would run it for now.
I've already blown seams on two other "highly recommended Performance Radiator' brands.
Before I bought the Mishimoto Radiator they provided me a contact at a Shop in PA which has been doing these Ambulance conversions for many years using the Mishimoto Radiators (commented "Hundreds of them over the years") and they have never had one fail or leak - I tend to appreciate the odd's in 'practical experience'.
Coupled with: ***All Mishimoto products carry a Lifetime Warranty which includes accident protection.
Twoxentrix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2023, 01:40 PM   #5
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2023
Location: Harrington, WA
Posts: 117
Mishimoto 10 or even 5 years ago is alot different than Mishimoto today.
There have been numerous reported failures in the past few years... maybe the vans treat them better.
kbeefy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2023, 11:55 AM   #6
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Flagstaff, AZ
Posts: 1,984
A tow tune will help but you can push the 6.0 harder than that. I back off at 1300-1400F EGTs (as measured pre-turbo) and am comfortable cruising at 1000-1100F all day long although generally I'm in the 850-950 range with a 40HP FICM tune and 80HP PCM tune and making upwards of 400HP.

OP, you did not mention if you are using the tow-haul switch on long grades? That will raise RPMs, change the transmission shift points, and lower EGTs.

An EGR delete isn't going to pass emissions in LA and there's pros and cons anyway. If it's been bulletproofed with an upgraded EGR cooler and revised OEM oil cooler than it's not really needed.

The info twoxentrix posted is most excellent!
2005 E350 RB 6.0 PSD for extended fun
1989 Landcruiser FJ62 for local fun
2011 VW TDI Golf for hwy fun
JoeH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2023, 10:32 PM   #7
Senior Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: San Diego
Posts: 520
Minor point: "bulletproof oil cooler from bulletproof diesel". If this is the air cooled oil cooler that BPD used to offer then the EOT - ECT spread is not a relevant parameter to monitor.
2004 SMB 4x4 RB 6.0 PSD; ARP Head Studs, Gen 3 Cylinder Heads, BPD Oil Cooler connected to AMSOil Bypass, a whistling Wicked Wheel Turbo, Coolant Filter, Upgraded alternator, ScanGauge, SCT custom and SMB Fox shocks.
BFG 285/75 R16 KM3 Mud Terrains on ProComp 7069's
PatO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2023, 11:01 AM   #8
Glenn P.'s Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: CA
Posts: 77
We are all offering advice here but an important question hasn't been asked yet. How heavy is the boat and trailer? This info may alter some of these replies.

My 2005 6.0 has the Atlas 40HP tune on the FICM and does quite well with a light trailer, 1-2 tons or less. When I pull a fully loaded flatbed trailer in the 7,000 lb range I'll need to downshift for the big hwy passes and keep an eye on the temps.

As a few have mentioned already, the van cools off very quickly once over the pass so just watch hitting max temps and still having a long grind ahead of you.

My van passes smog here in CA no problem with the 40hp Atlas Tune on the FICM. I was concerned about that but has proven to be no issue at all.
Glenn P.
2005 Quigley E350
6.0L Diesel
Glenn P. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2023, 12:02 PM   #9
Senior Member
ShuttlePilot's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 629
Originally Posted by Glenn P. View Post
My van passes smog here in CA no problem with the 40hp Atlas Tune on the FICM. I was concerned about that but has proven to be no issue at all.
That is a nice bit of first hand info for the 6.0 owners to know.

- Eric
2005 SMB RB 4x4 6.0 PSD
A rocket on the pad is safe,
but it's not what rockets are built for.
ShuttlePilot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2023, 06:00 PM   #10
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 11
Hey, where did you find that raptor like front grill ?
vanislevinceeno is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

» Sportsmobile Registry



(No name yet)

Add your Sportsmobile
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sportsmobile SIP or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:31 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.