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Old 12-23-2011, 02:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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2004 Silverado most bang for my buck?

I'm wondering what mods I can do to my Silverado to get the most bang for my buck. If you are going to say get a smaller car please don't post here. Looking for legit stuff I can do that seems almost seamless to the look of the truck...

I was thinking a grill block, but I want it to match the truck.
I was also thinking a partial underneath cover, possibly just covering the engine area... Would that help at all?

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Old 12-23-2011, 02:58 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lethedethius View Post
I'm wondering what mods I can do to my Silverado to get the most bang for my buck. If you are going to say get a smaller car please don't post here. Looking for legit stuff I can do that seems almost seamless to the look of the truck...

I was thinking a grill block, but I want it to match the truck.
I was also thinking a partial underneath cover, possibly just covering the engine area... Would that help at all?
Yeah, a belly pan should buy you some benefit with almost no visible difference. Why only under the engine though? Why not the whole way?

Grill block can help some, but watch your temps to make sure you dont go too far.

Bed cover will help some too.

Driving mods are probably the biggest thing you can do for a big truck. Slow down on the highway and learn how to do the "driving without brakes" technique. Note: not literally driving without brakes, but rather minimizing use.

Some synthetic lubes (engine, tranny, axle) might be of some benefit too, as would low rolling resistance tires.
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:40 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I live in and commute Houston daily. drive between 55-60 mph and pump up the tires to max sidewall those alone you will see fast gains. also the full belly pan will do alot and see if your truck still has the factory chin spoiler on it. After that look into the bead liner. on the fluids since it dont get that cool here for us we can get away with alot thinner oil than most.
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:00 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Death, unfortunately I moved from Houston about a year ago. I live in Columbus, OH now... where it's freezing my butt off. I miss Houston and I'm desperately trying to get back, but looking to transfer within the Army or get a Civil Service job there... I like guaranteed work...

I want to start with just an engine underbelly tray to try to get the hang of doing stuff... I'm not even sure what material I should use. Can you explain why maximizing sidewalls will help gas mileage? I've always thought 36psi is great.. comfortable... Bed liners are expensive, so I'm not sure about that, at this point and time.

I'm was looking and there are two separate grill pieces, I'm thinking of blocking just one to allow some ambient air to cool the radiator and transmission cooler...

I think I understand what you mean by using the brakes wisely, almost like the whole hyper milling technique... I try to coast to stops and just tap my brakes rather than slam on them. Same brakes from 2004 still... about time to change them haha.

I'm doing this to save money, would putting synthetic oil really maximize anything to the point of saving money? Regular Oreilly oil is about 3 bucks, synthetic can run about 10 a quart. Would I get that back between oil changes?
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lethedethius View Post
I'm wondering what mods I can do to my Silverado to get the most bang for my buck. If you are going to say get a smaller car please don't post here. Looking for legit stuff I can do that seems almost seamless to the look of the truck...

I was thinking a grill block, but I want it to match the truck.
I was also thinking a partial underneath cover, possibly just covering the engine area... Would that help at all?
Details on your truck? 2wd/4wd? What engine? What is your current mileage? Tonneau cover/canopy/open bed?

I've got an '03 Silverado. 4.8L, 2wd, ext cab long bed, work truck. I started averaging 15mpg (with canopy and roof rack) in mixed driving on my commute to low 20's this summer. I'm a little lower now due to winter and new tires that may not have been a good choice for mpgs (still not sure on that). Link in my signature shows what I've done (some pics have dead links, they were reposted later in the thread).

Grill block and partial belly pan made of black corex (similar to coroplast) made a noticeable difference. It was more effective in front of the grill than behind though.

My biggest improvement came from buying an Ultra-gauge. This allowed me to really see the effect of driving habits and keep close tabs on mpgs (my work truck doesn't report this at all). It's inexpensive and highly recommended.
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:16 PM   #6 (permalink)
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2004 Silverado LS, 4.3L (V6), has about 87k on it. 2Wheel automatic (I got stuck in the mud the other day and had to get pulled out by an suv... I was embarrassed haha), as implied before I have no cover, it's an open bed, with TAILGATE up-that stuff is dangerous to leave it down lol. The truck is basically stock. Power everything. I just put new Yokohama tires on the stock rims, I believe their 17inch, maybe 16.
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Old 12-23-2011, 06:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Cool Some pictures

So I went back outside, in the lovely ohio weather we have (cold as hell).

Took some measurements and pictures

Picture of the grill:

Top grill is 38 inches across and 4.75 inches top to bottom

Bottom grill is 35 inches across and 4 inches top/bottom

I realize gaping space is disastrous for aerodynamics however, I must ask, which should I block? does it matter in the sense of which is higher? I know the lower your car is the better gas mileage you get cause less air is getting under it, but does that count here?

Second order of business is gaps in the bumper.


What could I use to block these? would some spray painted duck tape work??

Third: Bottom of the bumper, where the underbelly would start:


I'm sure I can do a mount for an underbelly, but I'm not sure I want to extend it too far, my concerns would be draining oil... (though I don't change it much hah)

Is there an inexpensive way to fill the gaps of the headlight housings?


LASTLY!!!! The retched antenna, could I run a wire to the body and just bolt it there? Would that cause any kind of grounding issue? Would it cause any issues with the radio?


Help me out here!!! I'm a noob at this stuff!
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Old 12-23-2011, 06:16 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Leth, Just get a piece of 1/2" OSB and cover the back 4 feet of your bed, for $13 you have a half tonneau cover. I make a block of wood that fits inside the "Stake Holes" in the rear of the bed, you can lock it in place by putting a screw in the side of the block, then just run a screw down into that from the top, through the OSB. For the front part of the OSB you could use C clamps, or just make wood blocks to act as clamps with big screws again. It would only take a minute to get on or off once you have it figured out, and it would be a good aero enhancement.

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Old 12-23-2011, 06:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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What is OSB? Not keen on using acronyms without first using the full words lol
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Old 12-23-2011, 06:56 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lethedethius View Post
What is OSB? Not keen on using acronyms without first using the full words lol
Searching the internet came up with this...
Oriented strand board - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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