So, as many of you know, my beloved 2006 F-250, known as “Black”, was diagnosed with a blown head gasket last spring. Since she’s out of warranty, I decided to go with a diesel shop, instead of the dealer. No sense putting parts back in that will fail again down the road. After talking to several people, the place I was told about was C&C Complete diesel (209 S. Stark, Bennington, NE 402-677-1436) in Bennington, Nebraska. I must have had 6 or 7 guys tell me about them, and the input was all good. So, last April, I sat down with Chris, one of the owners, and talked about what Black would need, to make her reliable again. Chris was great at answering all my questions, and explaining exactly what they would do.
Since I didn’t have the money at that time, I decided to wait until later in the summer to get the work done. On July 27th, that decision was made for me, when Black decided she didn’t want to start. So, let the work begin. I had her towed in to C&C Complete on the 10th of August. Chris said it would take a week or so to get everything done.
A big break for me, was when Tim, the chapter leader of Virginia, had told me a few weeks back, that he had an SCT tuner, that was brand new, and had never been used, and that he would gladly send it to me at no cost. Needless to say, I owe Tim at least a nice dinner when he comes back through Omaha! (Thanks Tim!).
First things first, they had to figure out why she wouldn’t start. I had been having a CEL on and off for the week or so before this. Turns out, she was throwing injector codes, and the Fuel Injection Control (FICM) module had failed. This is a common problem on the 6.0. Ford had upped the amps on these from 22, to 40 amps in a reflash, and these modules had never been designed for the higher amperage. They have since been reflashed back down to 30 amps, but the damage is done. The FICM that C&C would put in is from Swamp Diesel. It’s a heavy duty module, and is actually designed to run at 58 amps.
C&C does not pull the cab off to do head gasket work, like the dealer. Instead they prefer to pull the motor and trans out of the trucks. That way, they can clean all of the external coolers (radiator, intercooler, tranny cooler, etc),.and address any other issues found (oil leaks, etc.). It was a little disturbing seeing my truck torn down like this!
After tear down, the heads are sent off to the machine shop for inspection and machining. The heads are inspected for cracks and wear. Turns out, due to the misalignment of the valve train from the factory, I had several valves and valve guides that were excessively worn. So, new guides and valves were installed. Also, the head mating surface is machined perfectly flat. This is one of the major issues with the 6.0, helping to cause head gasket failure. I had at least three cylinders, all in the center of the block , that had leaks in the head gaskets. You can see a few of the spots here on the old gaskets.
Back at C&C, the block will be fitted with ARP studs. Also, the fuel pressure regulator will get the “Blue Spring” upgrade, to help maintain fuel pressure above 45 psi. An EGR delete kit is also installed. The oil cooler is also replaced with a stock unit, and Ecoultra coolant (which is a similar chemical make-up to the CAT coolant) is used in place of the Ford Gold coolant, which has caused issues with clogging the oil cooler. As part of their normal package, the turbo is torn down for inspection. Since Black’s turbo was replace at 35K miles, it was in pretty good shape. A few of the vanes were worn, so they were replaced. The unison ring was in good shape, so it will go back in.
Saw the inside of the intake, and the amount of soot build up there. This was pressure washed clean.
I had decided to have a couple of pillar gauges installed, to better monitor the motor. Chris suggested a pyrometer, and fuel pressure gauges, that will be installed in the pillar. I went with the Autometer gauges, since they have the same green back lighting as my dash. Due to financial restraints, I kept with just two gauges for now. They look great!
When I picked up the truck, Chris went over all of the work performed, and we did a walk down of the truck. Nice seeing things under the hood all cleaned up. Gotta like that nice clean degas bottle also!
We then went through the operation of the SCT tuner, and the custom tunes installed. The basic economy tunes come from DP tuner. He says they are a good daily driver tune, about 100 extra horse, good for towing, etc. I ran this tune for the first few days, just to see how well it performed. This tune really woke up the 6.0, giving her nice hard pull from a light. First time I’ve ever lit the tires up was with this! Drivability isn’t affected by this tune, and seems it will be great for towing the boat or car trailer. Also, this tune does really well on mileage.
The other tune, the Extreme tune, is from Innovative Diesel. This is a much more aggressive set up , approximately 180 extra horses. Big difference from the first tune, this makes the truck a beast, and pulls HARD! Never thought she’d be this fast! But, gotta be careful, those 20” Goodyear’s are pricey, and I don’t want to have to replace those too soon!
So, couldn’t be happier with the truck, and the work C&C Complete did. I’ll be using them for any future work on the truck, and, like several did for me, will give them my highest recommendation for diesel work!
Nice job there Pat!!!! Looks like they took good care of you! Be careful of the EXTREME tune - it's addictive. All three of mine are from Innovative... tow/ street and a a "ECONOMY" tune..... economy is kinda like stock.... I don't use it now. Mostly the "tow' tune. I've gotta put the STREET tune in there just to see what it does.
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