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Should I start replacing parts or wait until they fail? :)

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1968-2013 Full Size Vans Econolines. E150, E250, E350, E450 and E550

Should I start replacing parts or wait until they fail? :)

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  #1  
Old 01-12-2018, 08:49 PM
NICKSAN
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Should I start replacing parts or wait until they fail? :)

1994 Club Wagon, E4OD, 5.8 Just crossed over 227,000 miles.

Knowing that the alternator, Distributor and all the smog equipment, (EGR valve, Air

Pump, Cats ETC..) Fuel pump, Fuel pressure regulator, Fuel Injectors, Etc are original

and are going to fail eventually, maybe any day, I am considering a plan to start

swapping out parts before they fail. I figure I would start with the Fuel Pump and FPR

then move on to the smog stuff.

This is my DD and I have no other vehicle, that is the reasoning behind this idea.

What do y`all think?
 
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Old 01-12-2018, 08:58 PM
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It's called "preventative maintenance". But don't bother with the injectors, feed it clean, quality fuel and those will last forever. They're electric solenoids, they don't seem to wear out. They'll get gummed up and stick with crappy fuel though, but are pretty easily cleaned with a fuel detergent. The smog equipment will fail before any of the other stuff.
 
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Old 01-12-2018, 09:42 PM
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The biggest problem these trucks encounter is age, that leads to materials fatigue such as cracked and broken vacuum lines, rubber belts and hoses. Smog system components will fail but they won't leave you stranded, a clogged fuel filter might though so as already mentioned just keep up on the maintenance and you should be good.
 
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:35 AM
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Ever heard the saying "If it aint broke don't fix it"? Unless you have money to burn or just like working on it constantly don't replace stuff until you have to ( except maintenance items ) . Now if you see something like your hard brake lines looking really rusty. Then that's a different story.

Don't go just replacing working parts. Stuff like the fuel pump or alternator leave alone until they fail. If you want to buy them, fine but why change them until you have too? If it runs and drives good, don't mess with it! Just take care of maintenance items. Belts, hoses, vacuum lines, filters, fluids, etc. A lot of replacement parts are poor quality. I've had replacement parts that were bad right out of the box. And plenty that failed not long after they were installed.

What I do is, when I need to do a repair. I group the repairs together. My 96 E250 with a 351W/E4OD has around 250,000 miles on the van, with the original engine. When I have an issue I replace as many parts that are in the same general area. Like my water pump started leaking. And I know from past experience that there's a good chance a bolt or two will break off, whiling removing it. So the broken bolts mean I will be pulling the timing cover. So I'm going to replace the waterpump ( and mounting bolts ) , pull and replace the balancer( rubber isolator showing cracks ) and pull the timing cover and replace front seal and the timing set. That way when I'm done the front of the engine is set to go. And if the cooling system is drained that is the time to replace the thermostat, hoses, etc. When you have to do something like pull the timing cover. It's just plain stupid not to throw in a new timing set on a high mileage engine.


And I wouldn't mess with the cats until it acts up ( plugged cat ) or you need some exhaust work. Then replace the cat/s. And if you want to you can upgrade to a high flow one.
 
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by fordman75 View Post
Ever heard the saying "If it aint broke don't fix it"? Unless you have money to burn or just like working on it constantly don't replace stuff until you have to ( except maintenance items ) . Now if you see something like your hard brake lines looking really rusty. Then that's a different story.

Don't go just replacing working parts. Stuff like the fuel pump or alternator leave alone until they fail. If you want to buy them, fine but why change them until you have too? If it runs and drives good, don't mess with it! Just take care of maintenance items. Belts, hoses, vacuum lines, filters, fluids, etc. A lot of replacement parts are poor quality. I've had replacement parts that were bad right out of the box. And plenty that failed not long after they were installed.

What I do is, when I need to do a repair. I group the repairs together. My 96 E250 with a 351W/E4OD has around 250,000 miles on the van, with the original engine. When I have an issue I replace as many parts that are in the same general area. Like my water pump started leaking. And I know from past experience that there's a good chance a bolt or two will break off, whiling removing it. So the broken bolts mean I will be pulling the timing cover. So I'm going to replace the waterpump ( and mounting bolts ) , pull and replace the balancer( rubber isolator showing cracks ) and pull the timing cover and replace front seal and the timing set. That way when I'm done the front of the engine is set to go. And if the cooling system is drained that is the time to replace the thermostat, hoses, etc. When you have to do something like pull the timing cover. It's just plain stupid not to throw in a new timing set on a high mileage engine.


And I wouldn't mess with the cats until it acts up ( plugged cat ) or you need some exhaust work. Then replace the cat/s. And if you want to you can upgrade to a high flow one.
Agree with you on poor quality replacement parts. It's a crap shoot now, even with name brands. As for the timing set, that's a different story. Most of the late model SBF's came with a double row-roller chain set, which doesn't wear out like the older flat link chain sets. If you have the roller chain already, leave it alone. They stretch slightly at first then run that way for years afterwards. I'm running a Cloyes Tru-Roller O.E. set in my 331, bought it for $25 at O'Reilly's 14 years ago. Went into the engine last year to change a bent rod and that timing set was still like new, with only a slight amount of slack. And ditto on the balancer. I've run old ones with the rubber cracked for years. If they're really large cracks, then replace it, otherwise if they're tiny cracks, that's no reason to be alarmed.
 
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Old 01-13-2018, 01:42 PM
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I really dont want to be stranded by a failed alternator or fuel pump. Those would be the type of things I would do first.

Thanks for the tips and comments.
 
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Old 01-13-2018, 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by NICKSAN View Post
I really dont want to be stranded by a failed alternator or fuel pump. Those would be the type of things I would do first.

Thanks for the tips and comments.
A failed alternator isn't going to strand you. They stop charging, then you have until the battery's charge runs dry til the engine will quit running. Best thing about these is the alternator is really easy to change. 4 bolts holding it to the bracket and the belt, which is removed using a breaker bar and socket to release the belt tension. Once that's off, then the 4 bolts holding it to the bracket come off then unplug it. The fuel pump's not easy to change. I wouldn't do it until the pump quits. Tank has to be dropped, van has to be lifted to drop it. If you do, replace the filler hose while doing it. They get dry rotted and then leak. Don't buy the factory hose, damned expensive part. Better off buying a radiator hose that fits to replace it.
 
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Old 01-13-2018, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by NICKSAN View Post
I really dont want to be stranded by a failed alternator or fuel pump. Those would be the type of things I would do first.

Thanks for the tips and comments.
If you are so concerned go ahead and replace them. But that doesn't mean you won't be left stranded by the new ones. I personally think your nuts for wanting to change the fuel pump before it goes bad. I hate dropping fuel tanks! Just be prepared changing parts doesn't guarantee against break downs. And this is coming from a person that is completely rebuilding a van bumper to bumper ( my 89 E350 ) .

If it was me and I was so worried about being stranded. I'd buy a new fuel pump and alternator and carry them in the back of the van. But dropping the tank on the side of the road is not fun either!! Like baddad457 the alternator is pretty easy to change. But I still wouldn't change it until you need to. It can be changed just about anywhere as long as you have the replacement part and some hand tools.

I think what you should invest in is a AAA card/membership!! Then if you do break down, you call wait an hour or two for the wrecker to show up and they will tow the van. I never leave home without it!! And if you ever do need a tow, that one tow will more then pay for the membership.





Originally Posted by baddad457 View Post
As for the timing set, that's a different story. Most of the late model SBF's came with a double row-roller chain set, which doesn't wear out like the older flat link chain sets. If you have the roller chain already, leave it alone. They stretch slightly at first then run that way for years afterwards. I'm running a Cloyes Tru-Roller O.E. set in my 331, bought it for $25 at O'Reilly's 14 years ago. Went into the engine last year to change a bent rod and that timing set was still like new, with only a slight amount of slack. And ditto on the balancer. I've run old ones with the rubber cracked for years. If they're really large cracks, then replace it, otherwise if they're tiny cracks, that's no reason to be alarmed.

I would say that would be true if my van only had 100,000 miles on it. But at 250,000 hard worked miles, I'm changing the timing set when I have the timing cover off. I already bought the Cloyes roller set for it. It's way too much work, to have it torn down that far and not change the timing set. I really don't like doing jobs twice.

And I waited about as long as I could on the balancer too. It started to develop a slight wobble to the outer ring. So it's definitely time to replace it. Before I loose it. The down side is this is a 96 so it has the crank sensor too. I haven't dealt with changing the ones with the exciter ring. And the replacements don't come with the exciter ring. So I have to check and see how it's installed on the balancer.
 
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Old 01-14-2018, 04:52 AM
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I agree with these other guys. Drive it til it breaks.

My 2007 E350 has over 330,000 on it and still has the original alternator and starter and fuel pump. I am amazed how electric motors like these Have not worn out the brushes at this mileage. Absolutely amazed.
It on the 3rd HVAC motor though...
 
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Old 01-14-2018, 08:12 AM
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I recall reading somewhere, when I had a chance to get a V10 E van, that the Modular engine was designed to be a 400k mile engine.
 
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Old 01-14-2018, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Im50fast View Post
I agree with these other guys. Drive it til it breaks.

My 2007 E350 has over 330,000 on it and still has the original alternator and starter and fuel pump. I am amazed how electric motors like these Have not worn out the brushes at this mileage. Absolutely amazed.
It on the 3rd HVAC motor though...
Not sure but the alternator may not have brushes. Fuel pump doesn't, its a solenoid type pump.
 
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Old 01-14-2018, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by wiskeyVI View Post
I recall reading somewhere, when I had a chance to get a V10 E van, that the Modular engine was designed to be a 400k mile engine.
I recently read it was designed for 300,000. Either way, great.
 
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Old 01-14-2018, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Im50fast View Post
I recently read it was designed for 300,000. Either way, great.
My 99 SD F250 has 330K on it with the 7.3. Still going strong showing no signs old age. Runs rings around a V10
 
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Old 01-15-2018, 05:36 AM
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Originally Posted by baddad457 View Post
My 99 SD F250 has 330K on it with the 7.3. Still going strong showing no signs old age. Runs rings around a V10
Well why donít your take your blasphemous comments over here:https://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/forum31/
 
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Old 01-15-2018, 09:00 AM
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Had to replace my radiator in my 94 w/ 225K on it, so I did the whole she-bang. I didn't think about the damper though so maybe I'll do that sometime. Had the shop do the water pump, timing case, timing set, all new hoses, radiator, t-stat, fan clutch, etc.

Luckily 2 months later I drained the battery too.

Fresh fluids, and the thing runs like a champ.
 
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