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Official FAQ thread (2nd gen Ecoboosts; 2015+)

30748 Views 1 Reply 1 Participant Last post by  milesej05
This FAQ thread is directed at the 2nd Generation Ecoboost (2015+). Although quite a bit has changed between the 1st and 2nd Gen motors, most of the same issues/questions/concerns still pop up. Most of the information between this thread as well as the thread for the Gen 1 trucks are reciprocal so you will see some of the same information. The addition of the 2.7L engine, the 3.0L Powerstroke engine, as well as the 10 speed transmission are all thrown into the loop for the 2nd Gens. The goal for this is to have this answer everyone’s general questions. If the moderators feel that a member created a new thread asking a question that is clearly answered in the FAQ, the thread will be deleted.

Any suggestions on additions, PM one of the moderators and it will be discussed. This thread will be closed for replies as additional discussions are not needed due to the array of information provided.


2.7L Ecoboost Motor - Motorcraft Filter FL-2062
3.5L Ecoboost Motor - Motorcraft Filter FL-500S
Oil Capacity for both motors is 6.0 quarts

THE MOST IMPORTANT THING. Run the best 5W-30 oil you can purchase and change it often. Manufacture recommends to go off your oil life monitor or every 10K miles...which is absurd. These engines work hard and you are not damaging anything by changing it more often except that it costs more money. The consensus is to NOT go over 5k per oil change. Some great oil recommendations is Mobil EP (gold bottle), Pennzoil Ultra, Pennzoil Platinum, Royal Purple, and AMSOIL. Make sure you run a Motorcraft filter ONLY. Mobil EP or AMSOIL (Eao17) filter are designed as well as Motorcraft, but have synthetic media inside.

DI engines have more fuel in oil, fuel dilution. If you get too much dilution, your oil will not be viscous enough and you will damage engine. Many of us are doing oil analysis to monitor ours.

Oil Pan (Leaking)

These trucks have changed to a plastic oil pan which has caused some owners a big headache. 2017 and 2018 F150's with the 3.5 Ecoboost motors built at the Kansas City Assembly Plant before 2/26/2018 as well as 2017 and 2018 F150's with the 3.5 motor built at the Dearborn Assembly Plant before 2/23/2018 have a recall to replace the oil pan due to leaking from the RTV seal.

Many owners after getting this recall completed have noticed that they continue to have a "leak" from the RTV seal within 10K miles. (See thread below)


Catch Can:

Do you have money burning a hole in your pocket and want to spend it on a non-power adder??

You don't absolutely need one for the 2015-2017 models but the choice is up to the owner, adding one can't hurt...right? The main point of these becoming so huge in the F150 Ecoboost world is due to the issues with the Gen 1 PCV system. The 2017 3.5 Ecoboost motor as well as all 2018 Ecoboost motors added direct and port injection to help combat this issue of valve coking so many owners of this model year chose to skip out on this modification.

A catch can helps with water/oil that builds up in CAC and thus being sucked into engine. When it is sucked into engine, it hurts combustion and if enough gets in, it will throw the wrench symbol on the display and you lose all power temporarily.
The factory PCV pushes the blow by (from combustion) through the CAC when in boost/WOT, instead of PCV line. This is why oil/liquid builds up in your CAC. As it condenses from the air running over CAC (the catch can works in similar fashion). If you run a catch can, it will have the air flow of PCV system go through it at all times, in vacuum and in boost, thus fixing the flawed stock PCV system. This is assuming you have a can, or cans, that filter the driver's AND passenger sides of the engine. Most blowby will come from the passenger side, often referred to as the "dirty" side. The driver's side tends to only push blow by out at wot, so not as much comes out here. Often referred to as the "clean" side.

Other options include drilling a 1/16[SUP]th[/SUP] hole in the stock CAC at the lowest point, typically done on the drivers side. This is "technically" a boost leak but it is so small, it is fine. You can plug the hole with a screw or whatever you choose if you would like. Nothing should get sucked into the hole. (PERFORM THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK)

If you are experiencing a shudder/hesitation while accelerating and have over 15,000 miles on your truck, it would be best to pull the stock CAC out to inspect and drain/clean everything that is potential in it. Is has been very rare for the shudder and misfire issue to be reported on a '15+. CAC shutters, and a redesigned CAC seem to be responsible. The '15+ CAC draws air into the motor from the very bottom of the CAC, as opposed to 12th gen trucks, which had space between the CAC outlet and the bottom of the CAC for water to pool.

Will a catch can void warranty? According to law, no. The part has to be proven to have caused another factory part to fail. That being said, dealers seem to be able to do whatever they want. One of the catch can systems gives you the option to drill a hole so the system is pulling from both turbos. Drilling a hole will not cause any damage. Do it correct and seal it correct. The passenger intake tube, where hole is drilled, can be easily removed. The clamp screw head is facing towards the wheel through the fender well. Undo it and pull off turbo, drill hole on work bench and reinstall.


Spark Plugs

2.7L Ecoboost Motor - Motorcraft SP-542
3.5L Ecoboost Motor - Motorcraft SP-534

The factory spark plugs were known to have gaps all over the place for the 1st Gen motors but Ford seemed to have figured out the correct spark plug gap for the Gen 2 motors. It still would not be a bad idea for you to pull all the spark plugs to ensure that they have been pre-gapped and installed from the factory correctly. If you are experiencing a shudder or hesitation and have already checked your CAC for residue/gunk, your next step would be to inspect/replace your spark plugs.

Spark plug gaps:
Stock 2.7L Ecoboost Motor - .028-.031
Tuned 2.7L Ecoboost Motor - .028-.031
Stock 3.5L Ecoboost Motor - .030-.033
Tuned 3.5L Ecoboost Motor - .025-.030
(Disclaimer; if your tuned truck does not like the gap after changing the plugs, you may need to experiment with larger or smaller gaps-these are recommendations)

Owners of tuned trucks tend to change their plugs every 15K-20K miles. Stock trucks should have them changed every 30K-60K miles, the choice is all up to the owner. (Ford recommends every 60K-100K miles :confused:)

Most plugs bought now come pre gapped at or around .030. When changing plugs, ensure you pull the negative battery cable! Torque them to 11ft-lbs DRY. There has been much debate on whether you need to use anti-seize or not. Some people have stated that the plugs come with anti-seize already on the threads. Others have stated that if you put anti-seize on the threads that you are more likely to over-torque the plugs into the block, risking the chance of cracking the porcelain. It's your truck and your choice if you want to use anti-seize. Just a reminder, the more often you check/change your plugs, the easier they are to remove and a lesser chance of them seizing into the block.

It is also recommended to add a SMALL amount of dielectric grease on the inside of the coil-on-plug (COP) boot. Misfires sometimes occur due to the COP boot being damaged. The boots can be replaced separately from the whole COP

When changing spark plugs, it is a good idea to clean the 3 MAP sensors with the appropriate cleaner. One is located on the top of the intake manifold, another on the air intake tube, and the last one near the throttle body.

CAC (aka: Intercooler)

The Ford Ecoboost set-up uses a Charge Air Cooler or CAC to cool/compress the air going into the turbos. Our stock ones are very small and thin, thus not keeping the air as cool as an quality aftermarket one. For optimal performance the IAT (intake air temp) needs to be low. When encountering higher IAT, your engine will, via computer, pull timing and power to prevent detonation.

Do you need an aftermarket CAC? No. If you are towing heavy or like performance, get one. Aftermarket units are significantly larger, thicker and have less pressure drop.

CAI / Cold Air Intake / Intake "Fins"

A cold air intake (CAI) is more for noise and does not show benefits to a stock truck whatsoever. The stock OEM unit is designed remarkably well and pulls cold air already and very efficiently. You may get a measly 5hp from an aftermarket CAI but at their high prices ($200-$400) for something that mainly amplifies turbo noise, that is not a very economical purchase. If you have "built" your truck with all the bolt-on's offered for your engine AND have upgraded the turbo's, then a CAI would be more beneficial besides for more than just intake noise.

The whirly fins inside the intake lines are for noise only, this is according to someone who claims to work for the manufacturer of these. I guess they are supposed to have the air spinning a bit before entering turbo, thus creating less turbo noise? You can remove them or keep them in, it does not matter, MPG will not change. You will hear a bit more turbo noise (witchcraft) with them removed. There has been dyno runs on the Gen1 motors that prove you lose HP by removing them, so that that for what it's worth.

Vent to Atmosphere (VTA) / Blow Off Valve (BOV) Mod

The 2015+ Ecoboost's (both motors) have a single electronic BOV (ebov) mounted on the driver side of the CAC. It has a hose on it going into the intake tube. If you want to hear a loud “PSSHHHHH” when you let off the gas pedal, remove the hose and cap the protruding end on the intake tube. @Stage3Motorsports sells a billet aluminum "plug" that goes into the tube. Some people have also removed the hose completely and capped the nipple off the intake tube with a rubber chair leg cap from Home Depot.


It could void warranty. If you do this, do it right. UNHOOK NEG BATTERY. You could damage EPAS (electronic power steering) hitting from suspension with hammer. Check all drive line angle afterwards. You will lose MPG's because of the extra rotational weight and rolling resistance of the bigger tires typically associated with a lift. You will also put more wear on CV joints.

Sync 3 Infotainment

Make sure you have the latest Sync update. You can update it yourself via a thumb drive or via in-truck Wi-Fi (if equipped). I was informed that if you update via Wi-Fi that it may take up to a month to completely update. You must connect your truck to your home's Wi-Fi network and go through the options in the Sync system in order to update. After shutting your truck off, the Sync system will continue to "work" on updating your system for up to 30 minutes.

Gear Number Selections

If the gear selection number is missing from your instrument cluster, use the +/- button on your shifter and the gear numbers will appear again on your instrument cluster.

To "Lock Out" gears, press the "-" button on the gear selector. To get that gear back, press the "+" button. If you shut your truck off with one (or more) of the gears locked out, when you restart your truck the display will be reset and all 6 or 10 gears will show.


This depends on driving habits. MPG DROP OFF A CLIFF WHEN THE INTAKE GOES POSITIVE, IE BOOST. That being said it is hard to stay out of boost as these engines were designed to be in boost almost instantly so the power is there for towing.

To help MPG:
-In town driving below 40mph, use the +/- arrow on your shifter to lock out of 6th and even 5th (depending on what rear gearing your truck is equipped with). For 10 speed models, you will need to experiment with what gearing lockout benefits your truck the best. This helps prevent engine lugging, changing gears often, and going into boost
-Do the proper mods/preventative maintenance listed above (spark plugs, CAC upgrade/cleaning, catch can) to ensure your engine is running optimally.
-Run good gas from reputable stations in your area.
-On interstate (depending on gearing) do not go past 75. Some trucks will see a large drop even after 65 mph.
-Keep your truck at stock height and do not put big tires on truck to save MPG!


Tuning will change the engine and transmission parameters to increase performance and power. This is done by rewriting the PCM code with a plug in device. For our trucks, the SCT X4 is the most commonly used and sought after because it can be used to store custom tunes from custom tuners. This can void warranty if it is found to be the cause of the engine/transmission failure. (See thread below)


KAM (Keep Alive Memory)

Although your trucks computer will adapt to you current driving style as well as if any power adders or electrical changes were made after a certain amount of miles. Some owners choose to go about this a quicker way and perform a manual KAM reset (thread below). Other owners believe that performing a KAM reset every so often will help the truck's computer adapt to new driving habits.

If you have an SCT Device (X4 or Livewire), you can perform a KAM reset within the device itself.


Lug Nuts

The lug nuts on both Generation Ecoboost's have been known to swell under hot weather or under normal driving conditions. Take caution if you are removing the wheels from the truck and avoid using an impact gun at all costs as it can damage them. The last thing you want is a flat tire on the side of the road that you can't fit the lug nut wrench that is included with your truck over the lug nuts.

Stock 2015+ Lug nut size is M14 x 1.5 (Hex size 21 mm or 13/16"). Should be torqued to 150 Ft/Lbs

Brake Pads / Rotors

The rotors on the 2nd Gen Ecoboost's don't seem to have the same warping issues as the previous generation Ecoboost's but they continue to go through pads rather quickly. When changing the front pads on your truck, you MUST be diligent and ensure that you are installing the pads correctly. The inboard pads have two "bunny ears" located on the top of the pad while the outboard pads do not have the "bunny ears". Multiple people complain about a mush brake pedal or weird braking after replacing their pads (or pads and rotors). Take note (or even pictures) before removing the stock or worn pads.

The rear brakes tend to squeak after a while when reversing after your truck has sat for a while. To fix this, remove the rear brake pads and use 100-120 grit sandpaper folded over and clean out the groove between the two sections of the "pad". Reinstall the pads in the correct locations and the issue should be fixed. (See thread below)


Tailgate Slamming Down

On XLT and lower 2015+ F150 models, there is no tailgate dampener installed to allow the tailgate to slowly fall down as it does in Lariat and above models. Many people with 2009-2014 model F150's would install the DeeZee tailgate assist. That is still an option for the 2015 and up models as well but the device is "exposed" and can cause some concerns. It is also noted that the zerk has broken off on numerous peoples device. The solution for 2015+ models is buying the Ford OEM damper kit that comes stock on higher end models (part number FL3Z-99406A10-A).


Headlights / Poor Halogen Headlight Output

The 2015 and up F150 models equipped with Halogen headlights have been known to have HORRIBLE light output, especially compared to the 2013/2014 F150 HID headlights. There are MANY threads out there on .Net (as well as other forums) as well as all over Facebook regarding LED upgrades, HID upgrades, Retrofitted headlights, as well as Halogen upgrades. Depending on how much money you are willing to spend will determine what upgrade you are willing to do. Retrofitted headlights (which cost the most) will run upwards of $1500 dollars for a set. Halogen bulb upgrades (cheapest option) will run around $50 dollars for low beam and high beam bulbs (set of 4).


"Warped Dash"

Many people on Ecoboost pages on Facebook complain about the "warped dash" issues, particularly on the 2018 models. The bumps that are on the dash near the windshield defroster vents are symmetrical on both the passenger and driver side and flow with the rest of the dash. There have been some people on Facebook that were able to get their dash/trim replaced but the replacement has also "warped". Personal opinion is to leave it as it is a non-issue. If a Ford dealership replaces it, you are more or less asking for more creaks, rattles, missing fasteners when they reinstall. Complain to your dealership at your own risk. Any threads started regarding this issue will be closed and a link to this page will be provided.

Cabin Air Filter

There is a cabin air filter in all 2015 and up model year F150's. It is located behind the glove box but replacement is not that simple. Ford recommends changing ever 20K miles.


TSB's / Recalls

A TSB is a Technical Service Bulletin, if you ever seem to have a problem here would be the first place to look. There are repairs out there for most of the common problems. The TSB number can be found on this website: http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/owners/SearchSafetyIssues

To check for Recalls on your truck, visit the Ford Owner website or use your FordPass app on your smartphone.

**There is a somewhat common issue on some early 2.7 Ecoboost engines, as defined in the TSB below.

TSB 17-2077:
*Some 2016-2017 F-150 vehicles equipped with a 2.7L gasoline turbocharged direct injection (GTDI) engine and built on 1-Apr-2016 and through 1-Jan-2017 may exhibit white or blue smoke from the exhaust, rough idle in neutral or park at normal operating temperature or after a hot restart. The vehicle may also exhibit an illuminated malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) and diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) P0300, P0301, P0302, P0303, P0304, P0305, P0306, P0316, P0524 and/or P06DD with the excessive oil consumption. Oil consumption may be 1 Liter (1 quart) in less than 4,800 km (3,000 miles)


If your 2.7 falls into these build dates, and you swear you've seen some blue smoke, or your oil level is low, you might want to check it out. It seems like all of the affected trucks fail by 30,000 miles. Many within those build ranges are living a long healthy life. If it's over 40,000 miles I'd forget about it. Ford seems to donate great job not messing around when these symptoms arise and replace the heads or the motor with little fuss


+ There is a fiberglass "diaper" located under the truck behind the steel skid plate. This is to muffle road noise and to provide more aerodynamics to increase MPG. This "diaper" is not needed and can be removed if the owner so wishes.

+ When you go WOT after a while of babying your truck, you will more than likely see some black soot/smoke coming from your tail pipe. This is totally normal and you should do the "Italian Tune Up" on your truck every once in a while to clean out the exhaust system.

*This section is subject to change and will be updated when more information becomes available.
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Since the new forum layout will not allow me to edit the sticky post without removing all the tags/links, I have included some updates/clarifications below:

Make sure you run Motorcraft, Mobil EP, or AMSOIL (Eao17) oil filters to ensure proper filtration is achieved. The Mobil EP and AmsOil filters are designed as just as well as the Motorcraft filter, but have synthetic media inside.
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