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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys
I thought I'd post my recent experience with my '11 Screw FX4 6.5' max tow.

My truck has had Amsoil signature since new. I'm now at 65,000 miles. A Blackstone analysis recently revealed no issues with the computer's oil change interval: no metals present and very little fuel dilution. They called it "conservative" and it was darn near 5W-30 spec. In addition, I've never had any timing chain noise or P0016. I'm confident that my timing chain is fine. I have a light foot and very seldom do I put the hammer down. Seriously, people get mad at me from time to time because I'm such a cautious driver.

The other day, 140 miles from home, I started the truck, idled for 10-15 seconds, pulled forward out of the driveway, and lightly accelerated. I mean under 1400 RPMs light. There was a stop sign 200 ft away, so I didn't have any room to gun it if I wanted to. I made it 50 ft, heard a knock, and immediately shut it off. The photo below shows the result: a hole near cylinder 3, just by where the turbo oil line ties back in. I sent a good borescope down the cylinders and saw no valve/piston contact. My plugs were recently replaced and they looked great.

I am a mechanical engineer and went to school with a friend who is now at Ford. He passed word around and it made it to the V6 boosted team. They claim to have never had a failure due to CAC moisture. While I'm not 100% sure that hydrolock caused this, I can't point my finger at anything else. Great oil, great maintenance, and a responsible owner. My logic is that my light foot allowed more moisture to accumulate than normal. Someone else, who might tend to accelerate harder, routinely causes enough velocity to pass water through. The only noise the engine ever made was from the HPFP. I know, I know, "how do you know it was just HPFP and not rod knock?" The old man is a 40-year mechanic and has a good ear. I do too. A stethoscope proved the HPFP to be the culprit for noise.

The dealer has it now and is supposed to advise me once they hear back from Ford. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. This truck is my baby. On the bright side, the Bronco is getting some much needed driving.

Your comments are welcome and appreciated: particularly relating to possible turbo damage. Keep in mind the low RPM, no prior symptoms, and an Amsoil filter. Current change had 64% remaining. Do you reckon this will be just a short block replacement?
 

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I doubt it was caused by hydrolocking due to moisture in the cac. In saying that I am assuming your truck is stock and doesn't have a tune. With that said, boost really doesn't start building at that rpm, so the likely hood of massive water ingestion from the cac causing hydrolock doesn't seem possible. Would be interesting to know the cause if ever located. Good luck with it.

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Hate to see that happen to you man, especially considering I drive the same way you do (well 90% of my tanks are for MPG with the last 10% before fill up being driven hard, I have a catch can, and run Mobil 1 full syn with 5k mile OCIs). And I find it interesting that the Ford team would mention "never" having a failure due to hydrolock from CAC...even though TSBs are out there stating moisture can build up and then be ingested through the CAC.

Keep us posted as to what their root cause is on the problem and post any pics of paperwork or diagnostics they might run and provide to you as that'd be great data to see.
 

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Sorry to hear about this man. That has to be frustrating when you are as meticulous as you have been with maintenance. I also have a hard time believing it was caused by hydrolock due to what looScrew stated. Unless you are tuned, you should have very low boost under 1400 RPMs. That would make it very hard for the engine to ingest enough moisture to hydrolock the engine I would think. Keep us updated on the outcome man. Good luck.
 

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Do you have a tune? Do you have a catch can? Do you have a hole drill in intercooler? If you suspect it sucked up a bunch of water, did you pull the intercooler out or a tube off of it and check to see if there is water in it?
 

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The rods on these trucks are starting to appear to be a "weak link". You are not the first person this has happened.

Given the sheer volume of F150s made, the high percentage sold with the Ecoboost 3.5s, the number of Ecoboost 3.5s used in other Ford vehicles; it wouldn't surprise me for a manufacturer to occasionally get a "bad batch".

Look for the Ford Service Rep on this forum in other posts. ESPECIALLY if you have having problems with your dealership.

I think MOST dealerships will do whatever they can to remedy the situation, especially if you are under warranty still. But if you are having some issue, definitely look for the Ford Service Rep that post on this website ... and primarily in the posts in the "PROBLEM FORUM".

Good luck.
 

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...The dealer has it now and is supposed to advise me once they hear back from Ford. I'm keeping my fingers crossed...
Welcome to the forum, ojz! I'm glad to hear that your truck is in the hands of your dealer; I know they're going to take great care of you. Have you heard any news from the dealership since you posted? Let me know; I want to do what I can to help.

Crystal
 

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Good luck. Sorry to hear about your troubles.

I had the same exact thing happen to me 3 months ago. But i pulled out on the highway and got into it, we where on our way to the hospital. Mine didnt make any noise either. Just a loud bang and it was done. Ford warrantied the motor and replaced it. After starting the truck and driving it found that the transmission was damaged as well when it threw the rod, so they are replacing it.

Just got a call this morning and the new transmission date is pushed back another week. Im going on 12 weeks without my truck. Probably took me 5 weeks to get the motor in and installed. Been waiting on the transmission for 6 weeks now.

I love my ecoboost, but man this has been really tough to deal with. My truck had 55k on it and had zero issues prior to this just like you.

I wish they new what was causing this. I didnt have my CAC drilled, i will be dong that when i get it back. In my honest opinion I think it has to be hydrolock to break a rod like they are.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Your comments are appreciated. My dealer gave me a simple "not covered" yesterday. Crystal has been very kind in offering to look into my case. More to come as this unfolds.
 

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Best of luck man, I hope you get squared away. This is yet another reason I'm going to buy that extended powertrain warranty out to 125k miles that covers all engine and trans parts/components.
 

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Most likely hydrolock. Don't care what Ford says. Drill your intercooler!! There is no down side to doing it, if you drive light it WILL build up with moisture.
I had this issue before, lucky it did't trash my motor.
On the turbos, they should be fine. There is a inline filter on the oil line that should catch crap in the oil. I have seen a few chunks go through the exhaust and mess up the fins but that is easy to see.
If you pull the turbos and the fins look okay, then I would be okay reusing them.
 

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...Just got a call this morning and the new transmission date is pushed back another week. Im going on 12 weeks without my truck. Probably took me 5 weeks to get the motor in and installed. Been waiting on the transmission for 6 weeks now...
Hi Burns363R,

I got your PM this morning; I'll do what I can to help out. :)

Crystal
 

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Ford will not be covering it, so it looks like I will be doing a short block replacement myself (best case) or long block (worst case). Thanks Rodney for the tip on the turbos. I'm going to do a visual on the heads and determine whether they need machining. Since it didn't get hot, I imagine no warpage is present. The machine shop gave me a $400 quote to go through them. The guy has a good reputation, so I think he's thorough and the high price reflects it. That part should be interesting for all of those who suspect carbon build-up on dirty valves. I have a good parts washer, so we'll see if mineral spirits will clean them first.

If anyone has any suggestions, particularly on:
1. Stuff I'll need besides gaskets and a new chain/sprockets (depending on wear)
2. Aligning cams for timing
3. Should I get the Helm service manual?

Please chime in!
I plan to pull the stuff on the front end (bumper, core support, hood) and use a cherry picker. Similar to the time lapse video the tech on here posted. I'm so glad I have a good shop at my disposal. That will make this a lot less painful.

Looks to be about $2500 in parts.

ANY TIPS WELCOME

It just so happens that I specialize in materials and solid mechanics and I perform root cause investigations for a living. I will document this stuff for this community.
 

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Sorry about the situation you're in but we appreciate the contribution of your findings during the tear down.
 

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Most likely hydrolock. Don't care what Ford says. Drill your intercooler!! There is no down side to doing it, if you drive light it WILL build up with moisture.
I had this issue before, lucky it did't trash my motor.
On the turbos, they should be fine. There is a inline filter on the oil line that should catch crap in the oil. I have seen a few chunks go through the exhaust and mess up the fins but that is easy to see.
If you pull the turbos and the fins look okay, then I would be okay reusing them.
So wait, you're saying there are additional oil filters on our engines that are inline on the turbo oil feed lines? Got a pic or part number? Never heard of this on the Eco or any other turbo vehicle (gas or diesel)...

Ford will not be covering it, so it looks like I will be doing a short block replacement myself (best case) or long block (worst case). Thanks Rodney for the tip on the turbos. I'm going to do a visual on the heads and determine whether they need machining. Since it didn't get hot, I imagine no warpage is present. The machine shop gave me a $400 quote to go through them. The guy has a good reputation, so I think he's thorough and the high price reflects it. That part should be interesting for all of those who suspect carbon build-up on dirty valves. I have a good parts washer, so we'll see if mineral spirits will clean them first.

If anyone has any suggestions, particularly on:
1. Stuff I'll need besides gaskets and a new chain/sprockets (depending on wear)
2. Aligning cams for timing
3. Should I get the Helm service manual?

Please chime in!
I plan to pull the stuff on the front end (bumper, core support, hood) and use a cherry picker. Similar to the time lapse video the tech on here posted. I'm so glad I have a good shop at my disposal. That will make this a lot less painful.

Looks to be about $2500 in parts.

ANY TIPS WELCOME

It just so happens that I specialize in materials and solid mechanics and I perform root cause investigations for a living. I will document this stuff for this community.
Thank you for wanting to document this. I too tend to do a lot of RCCA (root cause corrective action) in my line of work (engineer in the space and defense industry), so I'm always looking for info on causes of problems on these trucks. Keep us posted man
 
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