See diesel specialist for engine troubles
Dear Doctor: I have a 2006 Ford F-250 Super Duty with a 6.0-liter diesel engine. It’s been giving me a lot of trouble restarting after driving for only 20 to 25 minutes and turning off the engine. I have changed the battery, alternator, ignition sensors, computers, fuel pump and cleaned the fuel injectors, plus made sure the oil pressure was correct. Sometimes to start the truck a jump will work. It seems the truck needs time to sit before it will restart again. Please help.
Dear John: There are many possibilities that could be causing the problem that would not set a fault code. When it comes to problems with the 6.0-liter and 6.4-liter diesel engines it takes a specialized diesel technician who is well-schooled in troublesome engines. Your best bet is to go to a Ford dealership. Fuel pressure and sensor input are critical, as well as the cranking battery voltage. At my shop, we always use factory Ford air and fuel filters and we buy the engine oil from Ford.
Dear Doctor: I lease a 2014 Ford F-150 with the EcoBoost engine. I ordered the truck with a heavy-duty suspension because I haul my 9,000-pound boat long distances (New York to Florida). I love the F-150, however, the purchase option when the lease expires is pretty high. So I’m considering leasing a Ram 1500 crew cab with the 5.7-liter HEMI. It comes with a Class IV hitch, which I assume means it has the towing package. In your opinion, is the Ram adequate for towing my boat?
Dear Jim: The Ford V-6 EcoBoost is a good all-around engine for general use and light towing conditions under 6,500 pounds, not at the 9,000-pound level. I like the idea of a gasoline engine verses the heavy-duty diesel, unless the truck is used as a daily tow vehicle. The good news is that Ram has two different HEMI engines and the axle-tow package should have a performance axle ratio (3:70 or 4:10 gear ratio). I also recommend going with a non-aggressive tire tread pattern.
Dear Doctor: I drive a 1990 Lincoln LSC Mark VII with 130,000 miles — and it’s in very good shape. Recently, it has started to idle rough when stopped in traffic or at red lights. The condition is gradually getting worse. The rpm gauge vacillates and the lights flicker. Once I step on the gas pedal again, it’s OK. Lately, the AMP light went on for a few seconds. I would appreciate any advice because I love this car, but my wife really wants me to get rid of it. Ed
Dear Ed: Your older car has a slow to read and scan computer system. The first step is to examine all of the vacuum lines and vacuum hoses. The poor idle indicates a misfire at idle. If the engine compression is good, then your technician needs to look for unmetered air entering the engine. Other things to check: the EGR valve, PVC valve, an air intake leak at the base of the throttle body, as well as a leaking vacuum brake booster or external vacuum canister.
Dear Doctor: I have a four-cylinder 2014 Toyota Camry. Whenever the tachometer reaches 1,200 rpm the engine flutters. It feels like I’m driving over small imperfections on the road. It happens in every gear and as soon as I speed up a little past the 1,200-rpm mark it stops. What should I do? John
Dear John: You are not the first one to complain about this flutter. Some of the four-cylinder engines are worse than others. At this time, I do not know of a computer upgrade or fix. I recommend you take the Camry to a Toyota dealership. They will check your vehicle’s VIN number to see if there are any computer updates, or if there is now a fix for this issue.
Dear Doctor: I owned a 1967 Le Mans back in the day. These cars were generally known for poor oil circulation in the upper engine, along with noisy lifters. As far as I can remember my LeMans had hydraulic lifters (no adjustment), which became internally clogged and noisy. I was working at a used car dealership at the time and we found that Marvel Mystery oil, or even a quart of transmission fluid, seemed to loosen up the gunk in the lifters. Do you think this is a good method for alleviating this problem, rather than performing a lifter/cam replacement? Larry
Dear Larry: I agree, in the old days Marvel Mystery oil and transmission fluid were added to engines that had sludge and valve lifter noises. There are also engine flush treatments that are mineral-based (kerosene with an oil additive). This product is still available.
— Junior Damato, Motor Matters
Copyright, Motor Matters, 2017
(Manufacturer photo: 2006 Ford Super Duty)
Junior Damato is an ASE-certified Master Technician.
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