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Author Topic: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes  (Read 5277 times)

utmtman

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Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« on: March 08, 2007, 09:40:30 AM »
I have an 05 Holiday Rambler motor home and I saw the ad on the Banks Power Pack exhaust system stating one would get better gas mileage as well as more power going up hills and so on.  Presently my 8.1 gets around 4 or 5mpg.  Dealer told us it would get from 7 to 9mpg.   Right!!!!!

My question is; has anyone tried it and does it really work and what kind of mileage improvement did you get?
Lee
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While traveling down life's paths, stop to smell the flowers.

Karl

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2007, 10:04:49 AM »
"The rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated" - Mark Twain; circa unknown. And so it is with most claims of increased gas mileage. Most (if not all) performance exhaust systems are exactly that - they increase performance; not gas mileage. Driving habits, like speed and acceleration as well as weight being pulled or pushed, are the main factors in determining mileage. Also engine condition and state of tune. IMHO, any increase in gas mileage after installing one of them is very minor and/or purely coincidental.
Karl (Cheesehead) Kolbus   Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting "...holy cow ...what a ride!"

pjriss

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2007, 10:20:20 AM »
I'm sure your gut is telling you it's too good to be true. Follow your instincts.  ;D

blueblood

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2007, 11:32:28 AM »
I have an 05 Holiday Rambler motor home and I saw the ad on the Banks Power Pack exhaust system stating one would get better gas mileage as well as more power going up hills and so on.  Presently my 8.1 gets around 4 or 5mpg.  Dealer told us it would get from 7 to 9mpg.   Right!!!!!

My question is; has anyone tried it and does it really work and what kind of mileage improvement did you get?

It seems to me your MPG is too low as is. I'd check others to see what there doing. That siad Banks generally does have one thing going for them that the straight chip guys don't. They work on improving air flow first then add in the fuel component. So, I have seen installs where the fuel mileage did arguably improve.
Leo

Shayne

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2007, 01:31:16 PM »
 It's posssible to get a wee bit better mileage but don't count on it.  On 2 identical units, 1 with the Banks and 1 without, Mileage is 6.4 with and 5.8 without.  Power is much superior with.  It runs cooler and can lug more weight.  As for as mileage  don't count of it.  Lots of factors to take into that.  Driving habits is the most improtant.  I have a Banks and love it and wouldn't buy another gas unit without it, but that's just my opinion and I'm not sure the price is worth it, but to me it is.
Old, Stubborn, Opinionated, Set in my Ways, and Independent,  IMHO

Kirk

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2007, 08:23:01 PM »
I added a Banks full package to our Ford Triton V-10, 275 HP version(1999). Let me say first that you need to read the Bank literature and not what some sales person tells you. No matter what you do, or don't do to your RV, the biggest single factor in the mpg that you get is your driving habits. If you drive aggressively or fast you will get poor milage.

The Banks kits will do what they say they will. That means that it will give you a very significant increase in horsepower and in torque. The effect that will have on mileage will depend upon what you do with that added performance. If you continue to drive at the same speed and to take the same amount of time to accelerate, you will see a marked improvement in the mpg from the motorhome. But if you do as most owners do and enjoy the improved acceleration and even begin to drive at higher speeds, that will mean little or no change in mpg. You just can't have it both ways. In my case, I seldom accelerate much more quickly that before the Banks and I never travel the highways any faster than before. We drove at about 60 mph before the Banks was installed and we still do that. In rare cases I will take advantage of the ability to gain speed more quickly, but not as a general practice. Our motorhome was getting about 7 mpg before we put the Banks on and today we get more like 8.5 mpg. But we have good friends who put on on a very similar motorhome to ours and who drive much more aggressively that we do and they rave about the increased power but moan about the lack of any significant change in mpg. It is just a matter of what you do with the performance.
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utmtman

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2007, 08:51:55 AM »
At 4 to 5 mpg I presently get and it doesnt seem to have a lot of power going up a mountain, than I guess I cannot hurt to buy the system.  I will have to check out the price, find someone who can install the system.  I have sent an email to Banks for that informations.  As for driving speed, we drove it to Yellowstone Park and back twice last year, trying different speeds up and back between fill ups to see where we get the best gas mileage.  We found 60 seemed to do the best so that is our chosen speed and we use the cruise control to keep our speed steady.  We only have 15000 miles on this home and I bought it with 10000.  I was told by the sales rep we would not get better than 7 to 9 but would be happy if we could get 7.  I am getting the fuel filter change right now while its in the shop for campaigns, and I have got the oil changed right after I bought it.  I did find that towing our small pickup behind it did not change the mpg, another surprise, I expected a drop of 2 to 3 with a toad. 
Lee
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While traveling down life's paths, stop to smell the flowers.

Karl

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2007, 10:56:50 AM »
There definitely seems to be something wrong if you're only getting 4-5 mpg. Suggest you get everything checked and adjusted, whatever that involves for your rig, before spending $4-5 thousand on a Banks. I am also a firm believer that using cruise control on anything but fairly flat roads, will reduce your mileage. Too many downshifts to maintain a constant speed, and I find nothing wrong with allowing my speed to drop a few mph when driving hilly roads. Certainly there will be times when you'll have your foot in it all the way, but that's mostly mountain driving.
Karl (Cheesehead) Kolbus   Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting "...holy cow ...what a ride!"

utmtman

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2007, 07:39:47 PM »
I called the shop where they are doing the campaigns on it today and asked them to take a look at it and see if they can find anything that might be causing a problem.  I need to figure also that in the 5000 miles we have put on it over fifty percent has been up and down those Utah and Idaho mountains and hills.  I need to get it out on the open straightaway highway and see what happens, like across Kansas, Texas, or new Mexico.   I would hope that something new would not have problems but we all know better, even me since I have had it in the shop more in the past year than I have had it in my possession.
Lee
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While traveling down life's paths, stop to smell the flowers.

Gary RV Roamer

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2007, 08:50:06 PM »
I can't imagine why an 8.1L (Workhorse W22 chassis?) in your HR would only get 4-5 mpg. Should get at least 7 unless you have a terribly heavy foot.  I just traded a similar size rig with the same powertrain and it consistently delivered 7.3 mpg in all sorts of terrains. Anything in the 6's was terrible mileage (e.g. strong headwinds) and was rare.  And once in awhile we saw 8.0 or close to it. My experience was pretty much what most Workhorse owners get, so something is likely wrong with yours. Or perhaps you are running the generator a lot and that is decreasing your apparent mpg?  Although we did not find a huge mileage impact from running the generator while driving - a few 10ths at most. Maybe a plain old fuel leak somewhere?

However, using cruise control in hilly terrain is not conducive to good fuel mileage. Cruise tries to maintain a constant speed regardless of conditions and that causes you to accelerate up every grade, large or small, right to the top, and then you usually end of braking on the downhill. You will get better mileage if you let speed fall off a bit on the upgrades (minimizing acceleration) and then let it gain speed on the down grade at no cost in fuel.
Gary
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KodiakRV

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2007, 08:08:59 AM »
.... Or perhaps you are running the generator a lot and that is decreasing your apparent mpg?  Although we did not find a huge mileage impact from running the generator while driving - a few 10ths at most. ...

Yes, running a generator while driving shouldn't have much of an impact.  I've posted this before...
Quote from: mfa
Let's try an example...  I get 7.0 mpg with my gas MH and its generator uses 1 gallon of gas in 2 hours of running.  So in 2 hours on the highway at 65 mph, I drive 130 miles and use 18.6 gallons of gas in the MH engine and 1 gallon of gas in the generator.  So 130 miles divided by 19.6 gallons total gas consumption means my net gas mileage with the generator running is 6.6 mpg rather than the 7.0 mpg without running the generator.  That's not too bad. 

If, however, you're running a generator for long periods while camping and not deducting that gas from your mileage calculations, then you could come up with a low mileage figure.  I've also heard of cases where folks have had someone stealing gas out of the MH in storage over a long period of time.
Frank
Florida

utmtman

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2007, 10:06:46 AM »
In our two trips to Yellowstone we were hooked to shore power.  No generator use at all.  Like I think I may have said we found that 60 seemed to give us the best gas mileage but maybe we should try 50.   Which I think would be impeding traffice too much to try.   I will see if the shop comes up with anything that could be causing a problem.  We had one time when we were coming down off a mountain when we lost power and coast down the mountain.  I got it off the road and checked it for problems.  Finding none I attempted to restart and it started fine and we have not had a problem since and I just considered it a fluke.  But one never knows.  I will let you know what he shop finds if anything. 
Lee
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While traveling down life's paths, stop to smell the flowers.

Gary RV Roamer

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2007, 10:19:28 AM »
Quote
At 4 to 5 mpg I presently get and it doesnt seem to have a lot of power going up a mountain, than I guess I cannot hurt to buy the system.

Only if $3000 + installation labor doesn't hurt your bank account.  An 8.1L coupled to the Allison transmission ought to be able to move up hills pretty readily too. I was never in the back of the pack when hill climbing with ours and we ran at about 21,000 lbs + another 3500 for the toad.

Do you know the weight of your rig? And is it the W20/W22 chassis or the P32? But in either case yours is definitely under performing.

The first thing I would do is to check the air cleaner. Air starvation will decrease power and combustion efficiency. Also change the fuel filter, though a clogged fuel filter (not an unusual problem) generally results only in poor performance and not poor fuel economy. I would also want to make sure the transmission is shifting into its highest (overdrive) gear (fifth on a w20/W22, 4th on a P32). Do you know what the engine RPMs are at 60 mph? Should be right around 2000-2100 on a W20/W22.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
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2007 GMC Acadia
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utmtman

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2007, 08:31:46 PM »
Mine is 22000lbs, its a W22.  Its in the shop now for two recall campaigns and they have replaced the fuel filter at my request.  I also called them and asked them to put the motor home on an analyzer and see if it pulls up anything wrong with it.  I will also call them back and have them change that air filter.   
My neighbor told me today my problem is running in overdrive.  I kind of find that hard to believe.  He suggest to kick it off and run it for one tank of gas and see what the difference in fuel economy would be.  But we shall talk to the shop about that when I pick it up and see what they think.  I usually kick it off going up hill and down hill but that is for the power to go up and for the ability to cruise down without using the breaks as much.
Lee
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While traveling down life's paths, stop to smell the flowers.

Shayne

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #14 on: March 12, 2007, 08:54:10 PM »
You'll hear salesman tell you anythikng and everrything in order to make a sale.  But I doubt very much if BAnks will tell you to expect a big increase in mpg.  They may tell you it's possible to increase your mileage , but no promises.  Best mileage for me is 53 to 54 mph.  I average 6.2 to 6.8 and am loaded with my unit.  I don't advacate others doing so but hat is me.  I'm well aware of what I have and it's capabilities as well as Mine and my maitenence of the unit.;
Old, Stubborn, Opinionated, Set in my Ways, and Independent,  IMHO

Karl

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #15 on: March 12, 2007, 10:47:02 PM »
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My neighbor told me today my problem is running in overdrive.  I kind of find that hard to believe.
Me too. That's like saying you should only use 3rd gear when you have a 4-speed transmission. Overdrive is there for a reason - long stretches of flat road. Next, your neighbor will tell you a lock-up torque converter is bad ::)
Karl (Cheesehead) Kolbus   Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting "...holy cow ...what a ride!"

Gary RV Roamer

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #16 on: March 12, 2007, 11:06:39 PM »
Quote
My neighbor told me today my problem is running in overdrive.  I kind of find that hard to believe.  He suggest to kick it off and run it for one tank of gas and see what the difference in fuel economy would be.

Your neighbor doesn't want to hear my opinion of that nonsense!  ::)  I suspect he doesn't believe in automatic transmissions at all.  And you don't have to cut off the OD when hill climbing either - the tranny will shift out of OD when it neess to, just like any other gear (OD is fifth gear on your W22).  Just push down the accelerator and let the tranny do its job, OK? About the only time you really want to flip the OD switch off is going down a hill, when you want to lock out the top gear to help keep speed down. And in that case you may want to downshift further as well, if the grade is steep.
Gary
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Shayne

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Re: Banks Exhaust System for Motor Homes
« Reply #17 on: March 12, 2007, 11:50:08 PM »
I concur with Karl and Gary.  Tell You neighbor you respect his method but you've dicussed it with people that know what they are talking about.  It's probably the fact that he's jealous of your RV,  It's happened before.   Hope you get it straightened out and should you go for the BAnks, I'm sure you will be pleased, but doen't expect miracles in mph.
Old, Stubborn, Opinionated, Set in my Ways, and Independent,  IMHO