Hi Everyone-I'm new to this forum and researching posts to gain insight into other's past issues with PSD's. I'll start with what we have and what I know has been done to it. We have a 2001 F350 CCSB 4x4 single axle with the 7.3 PSD, auto, all bone stock as it came, 190,000 miles. It belonged to a friend who owns a couple of farms my oldest son manages. Robert had this one and has an 04 F350 dually 6.0, 5 spd 4x4. As an aside the '01 will run rings around the '04! Anyway, I'm a mechanic by trade and training, experienced at breaking stuff for about 36 years, including old school diesels. Educationally wise and experience wise I'm woefully inadequate with newer computerized outfits such as the 7.3's and up. As I maintain all of his farm equipment Robert basically let me have free use of the '01 whenever I wanted it, and eventually we bought it from him for my middle son to use in his welding business, which keeps it on the road 5 days a week several hundred miles from here.
As I did most all the maint. work and PM's on it, it was well maintained and except for a couple of items it was always trouble free and ran like a champ. It sprang an oil leak once, the evening before we were to leave for vacation, so Robert had a local diesel shop fix that. It was pouring oil onto the block valley under the plenum at the front of the engine. I was told it broke a brass fitting under there(?). The shop also steamcleaned the engine, but after it melted the starter and relays, and I found moisture in several of the connectors, they said that while they cleaned it, they never got it wet.
More on this later. The day he picked it up it quit on him on the way to work( like most farmers he has an actual paying job), so he had it towed back to them and they pulled the codes and put a cam sensor on it. It seemed to run fine for a while.
Several years ago Robert accidentally caught the driver's door with a bushhog when he turned the tractor around too close to it. It crushed the door and, I believe, caused a small crack in the A pillar at the windshield seam. We re-skinned the door and lined it up and it opened and shut fine. About a month after he got it back from the oil leak/CPS, and several months after the door, one night it engaged the starter and turned over till it melted it and the relays, I guess until it killed the batteries and broke the field. Since no one was around where it was parked, no one heard it do it. I brought it to my house/shop and replaced the starter, relay, GPR and the adjacent aih relay, just in case it had burned the contacts. That's when I found the moisture in so many of the connectors and found out about the steam cleaning, which I blamed for the starter engagement, however I did find the insert in the starter box about leaking windshields dropping water onto the module and harness under the dash, shorting the electrical system and engaging the starter. This got me curious, but I didn't put two and two together just yet. I re-charged the batteries, which tested ok, and all seemed well for a while. This was Feb. 09, in late March or early April the batteries went dead again(after it rained, but it was at the farm so no one heard it turning over) so I re-charged them again and they tested good, so I dismissed it to it sitting all the time. The next time it did it was June 09, so I installed 2 new Duralast Gold 850/1000cca Group 65 batteries in July 09 and kept it parked at my place. No problems at all. I've also rotated the batts every 6 months religiously. Well, one night about 3 am during a rain storm the alarm system/horn starts going off, I figured someone was messing with it, but when I went out to re-set it the starter was engaged and she was just turning over to beat the band! Disconnected the batteries and then took it to a friend's glass shop, told him what happened. He has an 01 exactly like ours and had never heard of it. Well, they pulled the windshield, which did break it(he warned me) and like to have never found the crack, but finally did and urethaned it and dropped in new glass. Put two and two together and made me wonder about the last time when I put the starter on it. Solved that problem and Cory's been driving it since for his welding business.
Three weeks ago, on the way back in off the road, Cory calls me and says it's topping out about 3000-3,500 range and not pulling. As soon as I rode in it I knew it wasn't getting fuel, but my delimma was that I had both bays at home and both bays at the farm full with torn down equipment that I was trying to get put back together, and he needed the truck back by Tuesday to go back out on the road for his business. Very reluctantly I told him to run it by the dealer and ask them to ck the fuel system on it. They called him back and said the filter needed to be changed(ok, I'll buy that and it matches the symptom) but then they said the FP wasn't putting out enough and needed changing, though I still haven't gotten an answer as to what the psi rating and gph flow was. They also told him they had seen many tanks that were dirty and corroded and recommended letting them drop and clean it. I've seen dirt in tanks before so that wasn't out of the realm of possibility. I went with him Tuesday(4/3) to pick it up, 1100.00 bucks, and it was running fine at first and no problems on the road. He got back Sat. and had it parked uphill(remember this part) at his bosses' house. Easter Sunday he comes out, it will spin over, but no start. After they about ran the batteries down they rolled it backwards and swung it around to a semi-level spot, he called me about it, then they left for church. I gathered up my tools, meters and chargers and went over to check it out. I charged up the batteries and ck'd the water in them, and cleaned the terminals, though they weren't really dirty. All I could find visibly wrong was a ton of dirt on the gpr and aih relay's, so I sprayed them off with Brakleen. I checked several other connections, all the fluids(we had just changed the oil on it the weekend before), but it fired right up for me as soon as I spun it over. I couldn't find anything else wrong with it and it started repeatedly after that. Soon as he goes back on the road it starts acting up again, esp. cold starts first thing in the morning. Seemed like if he jiggled the gpr it would fire right up.
Well, he's 300 miles away and I'm trying to give him pointers over the phone, and I suggested he swap out the gpr, but the local A-Z and Advance were no help there, even with me telling them over the phone what to look up. I sent him to a Ford dealer there but they didn't have one in stock and their tech, who drives a 7.3 and a 6.0, told him he didn't think that was the problem, and told him how to ck the HPOP level. While he's doing this he sees that it appears to be leaking fuel either around the fuel filter housing or the water seperator valve. No valve available down there, so I told him to not try to do anything to it. It wouldn't start again the next morning, nose slightly uphill, and they rolled it backward and it cranked up. He just left it running all day so as not to risk it quitting at the jobsites. That evening back at the hotel it wouldn't start again. Same thing the next morning, but eventually got it fired again. I told him to pull off and bring it back, to take it back to the dealer here in Virginia and make them re-check it to see if they messed up something or if the fuel leak is causing it.
They said they would check it out good, but then they called him back and told him the intake air heater had failed and that was what is causing his problem. They want 500 to replace it, but I've got my doubts that is what it is. They also said the batteries were bad and needed replacing, know this isn't right and they are still under the three year N/C replacement warranty, so I can take them by A-Z and have them tested/replaced Monday. Then they suggested replacing the gpr, just because.....what's a "just because"?
(They don't know I'm a mechanic, but they might be about to find out) I don't believe the air heater would keep it from starting in this warmer weather. Cold weather, cold start; yea I could see that. I believe they are throwing parts or it's a CYA on a mistake they made before. Please chime in and let me know what you guys think. Ya'll seem to be some pretty savvy cats on these newer diesels.
One other question, and I'll probably partly answer this one myself later. Never have had occasion to ck before. I have a Snap-On MT-2500 scanner, though I don't have the latest cartridges, is it compatible with the OBD-2 system on the PSD's or have you guys found a better or more accurate brand that has proven itself trustworthy? Thanks ahead for your input and time, I really appreciate it.