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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello everyone,
So I'm looking at buying a 2008 250 Lariat with 53k miles on it, really clean truck. I wanted to buy a used 6.7, but for a decent low miles one I'm looking at something waaaay out of my price range in my area. (Anywhere from 5 for low end model to 15k more for decent low mile one) So I've settled on getting a 6.4. My 5.4 truck before needs a new engine/tranny, so I decided to upgrade to a diesel. This will be my first diesel truck. I am looking forward to the better fuel mileage that this will give me (I was getting 10mpg city/12mpg highway with my 5.4, probably from carrying all the tools and material I need for work)

I know the 6.4s have issues, but that they can be addressed fairly easily. This will be a work truck, and if I tune it (may fix dpf and EGR, just don't know if u can get tunes anymore, may have to write custom one?) it will be close to stock. I want this truck to last me a long time. I know the 6.4s are problematic, but they are all that's in my price range besides a Dodge Ecodiesel which have bottom end issues or miled-out 6.7s/Cummins (Why are they so expensive? 2007s are going for 17-18k around here)

What upgrades do you guys recommend immediately? It's looks completely bone stock. Also, I plan on doing 5k changes on oil, would that be enough with the issues with cylinder washdown?

And can anyone link me some threads on bulletproofing these?

Also, on a side note, how did you guys feel when you got your first diesel? When I cranked the 6.4 over and I got to hear that classic diesel rattle I knew I was hooked.
 

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Good morning and welcome. A lot of knowledge on power strokes here in these threads.

I’ve looked into it extensively - how to bullet proof a 6.4. There really isn’t a way to do it. Deleting comes with its own set of issues, especially if you have to have it certified / smog tested every year. Unfortunately regular oil changes, while good practice and helpful, do not solve the 6.4 problems. You’re going to want to read up on the DPF system and the fuel injected during the exhaust stroke. There are other issues as well.

If I were to do it again today, I’d take a higher mileage 6.7 over a lower 6.4, or frankly find a nice 7.3 or 6.0 and bullet proof it. A nice 7.3 would be my choice, it’ll be cheaper to pay double the price up front - and the 7.3 comes bullet proof from the factory.

As far as the 6.4 is concerned, it is not a long term high mileage engine. I always figure there is a $10-15k chance on a new engine - at anytime. They simply eat them selves. Very nice trucks, lots of power, comfortable, and great while they are running well. But the 6.4 engine is not something you can think of in the same terms of reliability or longevity as the 7.3, 6.7 or Cummins.

IMHO, for someone looking for a reliable work/business truck, that is going to last long term, I think you should keep reading and researching the 6.4 before you commit to it. I think a lot of the 6.4’s being used today are personal toys, not for reliability.

Good luck, let us know what you decide.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
In my area they only have OBDII emissions testing for trucks under 8500 lbs, and no testing on 8500+, just the possibility for roadside stops, so that aspect is not much of an issue as long as I can find a proper tune. I want to keep it looking stock-like (keep DPF but hollowed? Caps on EGR?) I looked at getting a 6.0/73., but they are just not available in my area. The only 6.7s have 200k+ miles in my price range, and for 5k more they still have like 100-150k miles on them.

I kinda expected to have to replace the engine in it down the road, which is why I like the 08-10 platform, because they have kits available to swap a Cummins in them, which is what I would do if faced with buying a new engine. I want to baby it so it will at least last me until I have it paid off. The 6.7 platform doesn't allow Cummins swaps easily yet, and it also has more emissions than 08-10.

After the EPA crackdown, 7.3s, 6.0s, and 5.9s/6.7s all started disappearing off the market and commanding high prices in my area. The only ones now are either beat to crap and rusted like crazy (because they use a lot of salt) or they want a ridiculous amount for a low mile. (it was like 16k for a 160k mile 7.3, best deals on 6.0s were 17k with 120k on them)
 

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Get a higher mile 6.7 with low idle hours and good maintenance records.

You won’t need, or want to put a Cummins in it. I’m running fully stock at 315K.

Unless you’re wealthy and don’t need your truck for a month while the engine gets swapped out in the next 50-75K miles.
 

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Where I live there are 2 6.7's, one's an 11 and the other is a 12, and they're both under $13K. Unless you're dead set on a 6.4, just know the issues they come with.
 

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Where do you live and what is your budget? I'm listing my 6.4 soon. It's well cared for and only 150k (mostly hwy) miles. Tasteful mods done to bulletproof and get better MPGs.

I just moved to a new city and it doesn't "fit" (narrow streets and tight, street parking). Also, lots of short radius turns and low clearance areas (parking decks are normally 6'7" here... the truck is 6'11").
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
I was thinking of pulling the trigger on that Lariat, but I don't think I will any more. It is way more than I want to spend at this point and the dealer is jerking me around. The boost tube was apparently corroded and leaking so they are waiting for the part to get in. They said that it would be ready today or tommorrow, but now they say friday. Something just doesn't sit right about them.

I am not afraid of the issues that the 6.4 has, I just don't want to get one if it will blow after only 150k miles. I have seen a ton of stories on both sides though, some say they got 300k out of it while others said they have put new engines in at 100k.

My original budget was around 18k ish, but now my budget is about 8-10k max because I would like to avoid a car payment. I'm currently looking at some E250 vans (will most likely do 6.7 Cummins or 6.0 Powerstroke swap and 4x4 conversion to what van I get, probably a 2008 because they are super cheap) but I kinda like having a truck more.

I am keeping my eye out for a decent 6.0 or 7.3 F250/350 or a 450/550 with an enclosed service body now, but most in my area are rusted to crap (I'm in western NY) and/or have a ton of miles on them or have the 5.4 which I will definitely never get a 3v version of again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
A low cost DD like a civic won't really work for me. I have to haul a bunch of tools around and ladder(s)/material for work (I'm an electrician)

I don't mind a project vehicle, but I still need a way to get to work somehow, between my F150 (which is barely running and needs a new motor/tranny) and whatever I get.

I'm basically looking for something that is reliable right now and can get me around but in the future I can work on when I have time.

On a side note, what is the maximum amount of miles you would say on a 6.0 or 7.3? There are a handful of 6.0s in my area but not many 7.3s and the 7.3s are usually higher miles. Surprisingly, there is also a 6.4 with 245k on it.
 

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On a side note, what is the maximum amount of miles you would say on a 6.0 or 7.3? There are a handful of 6.0s in my area but not many 7.3s and the 7.3s are usually higher miles. Surprisingly, there is also a 6.4 with 245k on it.
Is that 245K with the original motor? My current truck is my first diesel. I did a fair amount of research before buying and came to the conclusion that the problems of the 6.0 and the 6.4 were of no interest. There are many who swear by them (esp a bullet proofed 6.0). If you are relying on the truck for a business but want to avoid paying too much a higher mileage 6.7 may be the way to go esp '15 and up.
As for the dealer... Follow your gut and find another. Intuition is often never wrong:unsure:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
A 6.7 is just too far out of my price range. The cheapest 6.7 in my area is $15k for 220k miles and probably an ungodly amount of hours. My boss sends me all over the place for different jobs so being able to get home is a plus, but I can't afford a 6.7 right now, not even a high mile one.

As for a 6.4 vs 6.0, honestly I lean towards the 6.4 a little because it has fewer major issues to begin with, but at the same time the longevity of the 6.0 is better, so I don't know. I would consider either if I can find one in good shape. Obviously the 7.3 is the best, just it's hard to find one anymore that hasn't been abused.
 

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I'm basically looking for something that is reliable right now and can get me around but in the future I can work on when I have time.

On a side note, what is the maximum amount of miles you would say on a 6.0 or 7.3? There are a handful of 6.0s in my area but not many 7.3s and the 7.3s are usually higher miles. Surprisingly, there is also a 6.4 with 245k on it.
For what your budget is, that sentence is unrealistic. At least in the terms of you wanting to get a 6.4. Sure, some have good stories, but there are far too many horror stories with them. You say the 6.4 has "fewer" issues than a 6.0, that's not really entirely true. If you got a 6.0 you knew eventually you would have to do head gaskets/heads and an oil cooler. With a 6.4, the question becomes "when do I have to put a new motor in it."
 

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I’ll interject here and give you some advice to save you the heart ache and your wallet, whether you want to hear it or not.

You’re all over the map. You can’t afford a diesel. You don’t need a diesel from what you are describing.

I haven’t heard you once saying you’re trying to haul 4000lbs of junk, pull 20k lbs across the Rocky Mountains, or run a PTO all day long.... etc etc.

Second. Buy the truck, not the location. Find one that you like and buy that. An $8k truck in your area is probably going to be a rusty money pit at the end of the day. It’s not just about the engine either.

Project trucks are fun. They are abysmal at best when you need it for a daily driver and it’s still sitting 6 months later waiting on parts. Projects usually take 3 times the money and time you first think it will take, and that gets it half done.

Imho. Take your current F-150, find another decent one for $10k, trade yours in on it, call it a day. When you can afford to spend, let’s say $20-25k, and then have the ability to absorb another $10k for Mtce, repairs, mods, unforeseen, at anytime then go buy a great big 4x4 diesel and run the wheels off of it.

Good luck.
 

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For what your budget is, that sentence is unrealistic. At least in the terms of you wanting to get a 6.4. Sure, some have good stories, but there are far too many horror stories with them. You say the 6.4 has "fewer" issues than a 6.0, that's not really entirely true. If you got a 6.0 you knew eventually you would have to do head gaskets/heads and an oil cooler. With a 6.4, the question becomes "when do I have to put a new motor in it."
Right on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You're right, I don't really "need" a diesel. But because the majority of the jobs my company has been getting are an hour or two away, the fuel savings would be amazing. That is probably the main reason I want to get a diesel, besides the fact that I just prefer them over gassers and the fact that they tend to be more reliable.

I would not get much on a trade in on my F150 since it needs so much work. I also am at least getting a 3/4 ton truck because I haul a ton of tools and material around and in my F150 I'm already destroying the front suspension (most of my tools are up in the cab right now) and I upgraded the rear suspension to 3/4 ton springs and shocks.

So that leaves 3 engine choices, the 6.8, the 5.4, or a 7.3/6.0. I am definitely not getting another 5.4 3v because of all the timing issues they have, and a 6.8 is hard to find, plus they are pigs on gas. It would be more than enough for what I need though. So basically I'm looking at either a 6.0 or a 7.3. (taking 6.4 off the list because it's too expensive plus as you mentioned they like to blow)
 

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Since you are buying outright, a diesel will not save you cash. They require significantly higher maintenance costs, and the purchase price is much higher than a gasser. So, don't buy a diesel for the fuel mileage to "save money". It is of course your choice what to do, we are just trying to save you from getting in a financial hole that you can't get out of. Any of these used diesels, you need to have a $10K rainy day fund for unexpected maintenance. The gassers will cost less money upfront in exchange for more gas money over time. But your employer should be reimbursing you for mileage if the job is 60+ miles away.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
There is very little price difference in my price range between used diesel trucks and gasser trucks. In my area, there are either 5.4 gassers or diesel trucks, and the price difference isn't that much. In either case, it will be something with 150k-200k on it and most likely needing some work, which isn't really a problem for me.

The fuel mileage thing is not the only reason why I am considering a diesel. The longevity also is nice. I know they cost more initially but to me the extra cost of maintenance isn't really an issue because they last longer than a gasser engine. The ability to run alternative fuels like WMO or vegetable oil is also pretty awesome as well. And being able to pull a trailer without a problem is also nice, since I may have to do that for work or for the occasional thing I have to haul. I just wish there was a smaller option than a big 6.0 or 7.3 diesel so I could get the best of both worlds.

I regretted getting a 5.4 instead of a diesel, so I guess I don't really want to make the same mistake. I would rather spend a little more on a diesel and have a big smile on my face than cheap out and get a gasser and wish I had got a diesel every day I hop into the truck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
I'm basically just trying to find any one with a pretty good body on it that I can fix up and get running right. The issue with most trucks in my area is that they need a bed and cab corners.

It may work out that I just get a van like I mentioned above and then get a decent truck down the road a little when the economy is a little more stable. If I can find a decent V10, I may go that route too. But I guess you are right, there is no way to get a decent diesel without a loan.
 

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My suggestion as others have suggested would be don't get a 6.4L. Check out powerstrokehelp.com videos on youtube on which Ford diesels are best.
I think he came right out and said if you have a 6.4L that is running...sell it, before it breaks. The 6.4 is also not a rebuildable motor. The 6.0 is better because it is cheaper to fix, than a 6.4 or 6.7L, and it is rebuildable. The 6.7L is a good engine, but is expensive when they break.
Reading through the thread, it sounds like you are onto a more reasonable solution, such as a van and a diesel later on. Though I would still look in Texas, trucks are cheaper out there, but usually have higher mileage. I bought my 2006 6.0 new, it now has 205k miles on it, original engine, and tranny. It did have issues in the beginning. Several EGR coolers, oil coolers, and finally the head gaskets all before 27k miles, but I put a coolant filter on it at that time, and have since pulled heavier, with no issues. And when they did my headgaskets I would have used studs but didn't have the money to buy them for the dealer to install, so it still has headbolts. I did recently have to redo the oil cooler and EGR cooler. But this time I put in a Bulletproof EGR cooler, so hopefully it holds out for a while. It has a small oil leak but I haven't really had to add oil, and I haven't been stranded by it. Eventually I will need to get that fixed. When the engine goes I'm just going to swap it for a rebuild. It has been a good truck in spite of the issues. But I also have a 2nd vehicle I can drive if the truck needs work, I don't have to use the truck for work. Good luck in your search.
 
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