I'm at 131k miles, and this, according to the last owner who used the F150 as a F250, would be its second clutch change.
I'm wondering about how much $$$ you guys have paid to have a clutch changed when they had to remove a transfer case?
And is there any other clutch I should consider besides a Ford OEM clutch? (apparently there is if one is stronger, but I think I remember reading that the OEM one was self-adjusting while the aftermarket ones weren't?).
It's only slipping when I really get into it (using the truck as a sports car), but it is indicative of needing a clutch eventually.
No kidding? Who'd a thunk a BUSINESS would ever do anything profitable like that. Do you bitch at McDonalds because your $3 value meal cost them 50 cents to make?
Take his advise and buy your own clutch, but don't be surprised if it still costs you the same money to have it put in. We do our best to not install customer provided parts because they always expect us to give them the same 15 month/15k mile warranty we put on our parts. In the rare cases that we do install a customer provided part we use a different labor rate to make up the difference.
We also try to avoid working on cars that belong to cheap skates that want to supply their own parts because it's a never ending battle with them. If someone calls up price shopping us we just refer them somewhere else. We've got enough good customers that don't mind paying for good work, good service and quality parts to waste our time on cheap *******s that often can't afford the car they own anyway.
It's the damndest thing, businesses have to make money to keep their doors open to serve you.
I'd like to actually CHANGE the clutch by myself, but it would take a lift that I don't have (for the transfer and tranny cases).
You can do it yourself without a lift. All you need are some jackstands to hold the truck up, a floor jack to hold up the trans/transfer case, and a friend to help you keep it stable on the jack. I've done several clutches on the ground.
It's only slipping when I really get into it right now, so maybe I have a few more months to go?
It's impossible to say. It might go a while, it might be done in a few days. Do want to pay a tow bill in addition to the clutch? As a general rule, a proactive approach is better than a reactive approach when it comes to fixing your vehicle. If it starts slipping badly it could overheat and crack the flywheel.
As it is only a 4.6, I don't need a hyper-super-duper clutch, but is there any reason to consider a specific non-OEM brand over another?
There are two kinds of aftermarket clutch. The first is what you described. The second in a stock replacement aftermarket and that is what I would go with. Just make sure you stick with a known name brand. Luk and Sachs are two that come to mind. I had to put a clutch in my truck a few years ago and the only thing I could get quickly was Valeo. It sucks and I would be hesitant to use their parts again. If you really liked the feel of the stocker the only way to guarantee that feel will be maintained to replace it with the same thing. Otherwise you can save some money in the aftermarket.
Did I hear right about the OEM one adjusting itself while others don't?
AFAIK, that's BS. The adjustment is done by the hydraulic system, not the clutch itself. Speaking of the hydraulic system, replace the slave cylinder when you're in there. It would suck to have to pull it all out again to do that in a few months.
I talked to a knowledgeable co-worker about it yesterday and he, too, suggested taking out the Tranny and Transfer case as one unit. I was thinking it would be lighter and easier to take them apart.
My co-worker also advised to look for... if I remember correctly, three-prong clutches vs. multi-prong? I know the area he is describing, but not the name of the part. Is it the pressure plate?
Thanks for giving me two name brands to look for. I was on Summit Racing's page, yesterday, looking at Zoom clutches. I would guess that, at max, I could appreciate and use a clutch with about 15% more holding power.
That's because most people do a half @ss job. It only takes one chattering clutch because you didn't resurface it to learn that you do it right the first time so you don't have to do it again. Pulling the flywheel also gives you the chance to check the rear main seal and replace it if needed. You may need to shim it if very much material is removed.