shopping for a 2002 or 2003 7.3L any suggestions? - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
Powerstroke.org is the premier Diesel Truck Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
Like Tree2Likes

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 07-29-2014, 06:05 PM
Powerstroke.org Rookie
 

Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Mansfield, Texas
Posts: 16
Thanks: 13
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Smile shopping for a 2002 or 2003 7.3L any suggestions?

Ok,...so,...I have never owned a diesel truck before. I have heard the 7.3L engines are one of the best ford made but not sure if that is true. Many people have told me they will run for 1,000,000 miles. ? However, I do not know the first thing about how they differ from a gas engine. What is the difference in maintenance needed for a diesel? What should I look for when buying a used 7.3L F250? I have been looking pretty hard at a 2002 F250 2wd with the 7.3L engine. The rig has 183,000 miles on it and the guy told me he has recently replaced 2 injectors (?) and also the alternator. I took the vehicle for a test ride and when I got up to around 70 mph the front wheels and steering wheel had some wobble to it. Also, he said his father owned the rig before and he had some sort of trailer brake device put in it. It was a small box under the dash with a little red led. (I don't remember the name brand). Another issue I noticed was when braking I felt a pulsing in the brake pedal almost as if an antilock brake system was pulsating but much slower. Could this pulsating be from the trailer brake controlling device? Any help would be much appreciated. If I should be looking at another year model of the 7.3 L engine F250 because of problems with the 2002 and 2003 years please let me know. Thanks so much in advance for your help. I hope to buy my rig in the next week or two so I will be online here in the forum area quite a bit asking for help until then and more than likely for assistance with my new toy after I buy her. I wish everyone a great night and thanks for welcoming me into your truck forum!!!! Sincerely, NIGHTOWLLL
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #2  
Old 07-30-2014, 03:57 PM
Member
 

Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 5
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Do a search here, many people have asked similar questions. I will try to answer some of them briefly to give you a basis on which to search.

Yes, the 7.3 is probably the best Ford engine ever made (actually made by International) and maybe the all time most reliable.

Maintenance is similar, fluids still get changed, parts wear out, etc. However, oil changes can run $100 or so due to the 15qts required.

Look for a truck that has been well taken care of. Maintenance records are nice, but go by the overall feel. Take it to a qualified mechanic to have it inspected.

Replacing injectors is not out of the ordinary, but expensive. 183k is somewhat early but stuff happens. I'd be more worried that only 2 were replaced. Likely the others aren't far behind and there is a lot of labor required to change them. Read up on Wikipedia about diesel engines, that will explain what injectors do.

Wobble can be caused by balance issues with the tires, poor alignment, or worn front end parts. Jack up each front tire and give it a good hard shake in every direction. There should be no movement. This is likely not a huge issue, but may require some money to fix (and is a big safety issue).

Most of these trucks will have a brake controller installed at some point in their lives. This device will activate brakes on a trailer, when attached, and does not affect the trucks brakes in any way.

The pulsing is likely warped rotors, though can have many factors. Have your mechanic inspect the brakes. Learn to change your own brakes, it is an easy job and will save you tons of money. Plus you will feel good knowing it was done right.

In general, avoid the 2001 model year unless the transmission has been replaced. All will need a transmission job at some point but the 2001s are more prone due to a change in a "mechanical diode". Look that up for more info. Any year is fine other than that. The connecting rods changed from forged to Powdered Metal (PMRs) in 2001 which are weaker, but hold up no problem under normal use (up to 400HP or so).

There was a new interior in 2001 and a new gauge cluster in 2002 but all years are pretty similar otherwise. Early 99 trucks have some other changes so I would just avoid that year for a buyer like you.

Any other questions, feel free to ask (after you search )


Dave
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #3  
Old 07-30-2014, 04:08 PM
Serving Our Country!
 

Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Thee Big Apple
Posts: 407
Thanks: 3
Thanked 16 Times in 16 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Lt.Dan pretty much summed everything up.

I would honestly keep looking as I can see a repair bill in the near future. When you shouldn't settle on the first truck you see. As there have been members on here that it took them months to find the right truck and it was the best decision they made.

The 7.3 Made by International has it's peak horsepower and torque in the 02-03 years but I heard that the 99-01 models have better rods in them, I forgot what they were actually called.

The miles on it are decent but for what is happening it seems as if the truck was driven hard and since a trailer brake was put in, it has seen a lot of work days.

Also I would kinda stay away from a 2WD but that is just me, my 4WD helps me all the time.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #4  
Old 07-30-2014, 05:41 PM
Compression Ignition Addict
 

Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 335
Thanks: 1
Thanked 13 Times in 13 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
And just know that you will have PMRs not forged rods if it's an 02-03.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #5  
Old 07-31-2014, 06:38 AM
Compression Ignition Addict
 

Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,183
Thanks: 4
Thanked 116 Times in 110 Posts
Feedback Score: 3 reviews
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tow51Stang View Post
And just know that you will have PMRs not forged rods if it's an 02-03.
If there was an actual issue with PMRs failing, this would be a concern.

There isn't.

So it's not....
GunnerB likes this.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #6  
Old 07-31-2014, 06:41 AM
Compression Ignition Addict
 

Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 335
Thanks: 1
Thanked 13 Times in 13 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Well he didn't state what his intentions were with the truck, so if he wanted to throw some big injectors and have 500hp it'd be a problem hahaha
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #7  
Old 07-31-2014, 07:16 AM
Compression Ignition Addict
 

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Flowery Branch, GA
Posts: 1,473
Thanks: 15
Thanked 59 Times in 55 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Lt Dan hit it pretty much IMHO

I just picked up a 2001 7.3 too replace my 2000 7.3 that had the front end torn off by some chick that blew a red light

What I learned that the previous owner did a good job of keeping it clean but did not know crappola about maintenance, I've changed all the fluids, and have been giving her a heavy helping of Diesel Kleen and 2 stroke oil nursing the injectors back too health. The truck is starting too run allot better but I do need too drop the tank and clean the filters in the tank.

But go with your gut feeling, if you feel there are too many issue's you can't afford too address, then walk away.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
The Following User Says Thank You to hansel For This Useful Post:
nightowlll (09-16-2014)
  #8  
Old 07-31-2014, 02:53 PM
Member
 

Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 5
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Quote:
Originally Posted by Horizon122 View Post
As there have been members on here that it took them months to find the right truck and it was the best decision they made.
Tell me about it! I've been looking for about 14 months now (8 months seriously) to find a good 7.3. I just had to pass on a beautiful Harley clone since it was lifted on 37s and I need to plow. But Tuesday might be the day on an '03 CCSB!

As far as you're concerned, I also vote to keep looking. This is a big investment and you should feel very confident about the purchase. I've learned the hard way to catch those small red flags; you're emotions can turn what should be big flags into minor ones so keep them in mind.

That said, anything can be fixed if the price is right. I'd have no problem buying one that needed work because I know the cost to fix most things and can do some work myself, but you may not be in that position. Feel free to keep posting on here what a mechanic tells you and we can help with the price. I'm a small time appraiser of auction Super Dutys for local dealers.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #9  
Old 08-06-2014, 05:43 PM
Powerstroke.org Rookie
 

Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Mansfield, Texas
Posts: 16
Thanks: 13
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Red face Well I think I've narrowed it down.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lt.Dan View Post
Tell me about it! I've been looking for about 14 months now (8 months seriously) to find a good 7.3. I just had to pass on a beautiful Harley clone since it was lifted on 37s and I need to plow. But Tuesday might be the day on an '03 CCSB!

As far as you're concerned, I also vote to keep looking. This is a big investment and you should feel very confident about the purchase. I've learned the hard way to catch those small red flags; you're emotions can turn what should be big flags into minor ones so keep them in mind.

That said, anything can be fixed if the price is right. I'd have no problem buying one that needed work because I know the cost to fix most things and can do some work myself, but you may not be in that position. Feel free to keep posting on here what a mechanic tells you and we can help with the price. I'm a small time appraiser of auction Super Dutys for local dealers.

Well, I think I have narrowed it down. First of all, I found a 2006 6.0 Liter Diesel Dually XLT 4x4 with 225,000 miles on it. It was apparently a fleet vehicle and a used dealer here in Dallas/Ft. Worth has it for sale. I had driven around 10 7.3 liters and 3 6.0 liters. The 7.3 liters were all kinda slow in the first two gears. They did get up and go a little in 3rd and 4th but I wasn't sure if it was bogged down injectors or just a typical 7.3 truck. I drove years 2000 and 2002. Then, I drove a 2004 6.0 that was really slow in the first two gears. Kinda scared me. But it finally got going on the interstate and after around 60mph it hauled A$$ down the interstate. Finally, I drove the 4x4 2006 year model dually with the 6.0 and it hauled a$$ right off of the start. all the way up to the 90mph I felt comfortable taking up to. The only drawback on the 4x4 dually was that it had a oil leak under the motor somewhere. Not sure where it was coming from but it wasn't the rear main seal. So, it was somewhere in the middle of the motor from what it looked like. My questions for you guys are as follows:

1. - would you consider the 6.0 liter if it were a great price and the engine/motor felt really strong but just needed an oil leak fixed? (where would the most common oil leak be coming from on a 2006 4x4 dually?)

2. - the other 7.3 I have been thinking about buying is a 2000 year model with 280K on it. The guy selling it pointed out a plug in the front of the rig and said that I would need to plug it in in the winter so it would start.(?) It was the one with a somewhat slow 1st and second gear. It also had a granny gear. The truck is clean and they guy replaced all new a/c components on it (that's important to me down here in Texas). I met him at a jobsite and the truck was in the grass so I really could't tell if it had a slow leak. I drove it around 5 miles and stopped in a lot where I could crawl under it and it didn't appear to have any leaks at all. MY question on this one is: (if he had never replaced any injectors - he said he hadn't and he is the second owner - can I expect to have to replace them soon considering it has 280,000 miles on it? OR - Can you go a good 500,000 miles without having to replace injectors if you change filters regularly)??

Any help sure would be appreciated! Thanks so much for y'all's help!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
  #10  
Old 08-06-2014, 07:58 PM
Serving Our Country!
 

Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Thee Big Apple
Posts: 407
Thanks: 3
Thanked 16 Times in 16 Posts
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
For a 6.0 I wouldn't get anything over the 6 digits unless it was 100% bulletproofed. But I don't have much experience with them.

As far as hauling *** in a 7.3 if they are mateniced right then they have no issues doing that. I was on the highway on a road trip doing 95mph in my truck and I didn't even realize it. I thought I was going about 75 till the cop showed me the radar gun.

Too little is known on that 7.3 to know for sure if it's good or not but I'd still keep a eye out.
That plug is for the block heater and yes you should use that in the winter. The 7.3 hates the cold and I had to learn the hard way as my plug broke.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:55 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.1
Garage Plus, Vendor Tools vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.

vB.Sponsors