Duramax Exhaust Brake Upgrade

BD Diesel Variable Vane Exhasut Brake Upgrade


Plug-and-play BD Diesel Performance variable-vane controller provides up to 150 retarding horsepower to help haul down heavily laden late-model GM HD diesel pickups

By Bruce W. Smith

If you are tired of eating up front disc brakes and having to lay on the brake pedal longer than you’d like when your late-model GM HD pickup is towing a big gooseneck or heavy tow-behind trailer, we may have found a solution.

BD Diesel Performance has developed a new electronic controller that greatly enhances the braking power of the factory GM turbo.

The Variable Vane Brake (VVB) works with the turbocharger design used in the 2004.5-up Duramax engines to reduce turbo lag and increase power can now be tapped to slow your 2500/3500 HD down.

BD utilizes this technology to electronically close off the vanes, which can create up to 150 retarding horsepower to take some of the heat off the brake pads, rotors and drums.

This added exhaust braking force can help maintain speeds on descents and curves, automatically giving you better control of your truck and load.

While in Tow/Haul mode,  BD’s VVD system will close the variable vanes in the turbo everytime you let off the throttle, developing exhaust back pressure in the engine’s combustion chamber which creates resistance against the piston from reaching top dead center.

BD Diesel Duramax Variable Vane Brake controller upgrade kit is plug-and-play braking performance at its best.

The VVB rotary switch offers three different modes:

  • Level/Position 1closes turbo vanes only when throttle is released.
  • Level/Position 2 closes the vanes and causes a down-shift when throttle is released.
  • Level/Position 3 closes vanes and causes an aggressive downshift.

Exhaust braking also works in Allison manual shift selections. The VVB integrates with the cruise control to automatically accelerate and decelerate to maintain vehicle speed.

We upgraded a landscaper’s 2009 Sierra 3500HD cab/chassis with the system and found the $900 kit easily installs by plugging into existing factory ports and by mounting the rotary switch on the dash.

The installation instructions are clear and concise.

BD Diesel Performance; (800) 887-5030; www.dieselperformance.com