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Old 12-27-2014, 03:41 PM   #1
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Cost and feasibility of buying and installing a rebuilt Ford Tritan V-10 engine?

First, let me be clear, I am no mechanic. Not at all. I might be buying a used gas Class-A motorhome with the ever present Ford V-10. I might be wrong about this, but replacing the engine with a new or a rebuilt one would be the largest single expense I might face. And yes, I know that there are plenty of other big problems I could face.

Has anybody had to do this? How in the world can someone replace the engine with the whole "house" built on top of, and around, the engine? Does anybody have a solid idea of what the worst case could cost? Thanks. Don't ask me to clarify my question more than I have, because I would be talking without understanding of the issues.
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Old 12-27-2014, 04:31 PM   #2
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Yes, likely largest expense available would be to replace the engine.

Rebuild in place may be feasible depending on the issue with the engine. Replacement is done one of a variety of ways. If exist drivers door, wrangle the engine through there. Or remove windshield. Some come out the bottom after removing front axle. All labor intensive.
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Old 12-27-2014, 04:43 PM   #3
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Quote:
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Yes, likely largest expense available would be to replace the engine.

Rebuild in place may be feasible depending on the issue with the engine. Replacement is done one of a variety of ways. If exist drivers door, wrangle the engine through there. Or remove windshield. Some come out the bottom after removing front axle. All labor intensive.
OUCH, so my fears weren't unfounded. Do the manufacturers just assume that replacing the engine is so unlikely an event it isn't worth building the motorhome so that it could be done more easily? Not that I have any idea how that would be done.

Is it just as hard to replace a diesel, a DP, or a FRED? I'm assuming the DP diesels are a lot larger and heavier than the Ford?
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Old 12-27-2014, 05:13 PM   #4
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We bought our MH wing 29500 miles on it. I figure is will take us 20 years (will be 75 then) to get to 200,000. At that point in time we will evaluate whether or not to get a new RV, drop in a new engine, or call it quits and just stay in our grandparents mobile home. I hope it is not the last choice, but we will see what health problems develop and what the economy is doing by then.
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Old 12-27-2014, 05:22 PM   #5
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Total engine replacement is a very unlikely event for a motorhome. You're just not going to wear it out in the effective lifetime of the rig. A catastrophic failure is possible, of course, but not something that warrants designing the unit around.
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Old 12-27-2014, 05:35 PM   #6
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jjva343, is someone trying to sell you an older high mileage Class A with a V-10, or are you just looking down the road what could be the worst case senario with any type (gas/ diesel)MH you buy. You can always buy a warranty, which will require an inspection by the warranty company, which would cover engine replacement. They are fairly reasonable depending on the age of the MH. Or if you are buying new, it is covered for 5 years, 60,000 miles(you can also buy an extended warranty on a new MH). Either way other things will probably need repair long before the V-10 does, it is a very reliable engine, and the need for a total replacement is unlikely.

I have heard the engine replacement can be around 10k depending on how you do it, new/rebuilt, and how they have to take it out. The labor is a huge part of the cost. That is one of the reasons we bought new, I know some people think it's a waste of money to buy new but I take care of my things and like to know what has been done to them and how they have been driven ect.
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Old 12-27-2014, 06:04 PM   #7
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5-7K for an engine replacement.
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Old 12-27-2014, 06:20 PM   #8
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jjva343, is someone trying to sell you an older high mileage Class A with a V-10, or are you just looking down the road what could be the worst case senario with any type (gas/ diesel)MH you buy. You can always buy a warranty, which will require an inspection by the warranty company, which would cover engine replacement. They are fairly reasonable depending on the age of the MH. Or if you are buying new, it is covered for 5 years, 60,000 miles(you can also buy an extended warranty on a new MH). Either way other things will probably need repair long before the V-10 does, it is a very reliable engine, and the need for a total replacement is unlikely.

I have heard the engine replacement can be around 10k depending on how you do it, new/rebuilt, and how they have to take it out. The labor is a huge part of the cost. That is one of the reasons we bought new, I know some people think it's a waste of money to buy new but I take care of my things and like to know what has been done to them and how they have been driven ect.
Ha, ha, Mike, yes and no. I am looking at a cheap method to try out RVing with my wife, daughter and dogs before investing a more substantial amount on a new or new-er motorhome. And before someone jumps on me for not doing something more logical like renting for a while, I've thought of it, seen how much it would cost to rent, thought about keeping our dogs in a rental vehicle, etc., etc., and decided on the possible approach I'm working on now.

With regard to the longevity of the Ford engine, I have one brother-in-law whose opinion I trust on mechanical matters, and he says that the Ford engine will crash and die within 50,000 miles, that I should only look at diesel motorhomes. I've looked around on sites like this and have seen where the Fords can die in 50,000 miles or last for over 150,000 miles, based in large part on how they are maintained, and part on luck. I just decided to research the worst case scenario, i.e., the engine needs to be replaced in toto. In the overall scheme of things, ten grand isn't going to break my pocketbook (or rather, wallet), and I rather doubt the second Ford engine will die too.

BTW, I know you have a Newmar Canyon Star 3610 with a beefed up chassis (for free). I respect your decision to buy new and care for it as if you will own it for a very long time. I do that with cars all the time, and if it works out for us regarding RVing, I will consider that option going forward.

Thanks for the advice everyone.
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Old 12-27-2014, 06:48 PM   #9
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No Ford fan but I have never seen one crash or die on that few of miles. Many I'm aware of are well beyond the 200k mark. Usually the body falls off with rust first. There were some in the late 90's and early 2k that had a spark plug issue with threads in the heads. I would think those have been fixed by now.


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Old 12-27-2014, 06:51 PM   #10
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jjava343, I'm not sure how much you want to spend on a used one, but you can get some pretty good ones for a reasonable amount. Another reason (I have many) that I bought new was that I really wanted my wife to enjoy RV'ing and didn't want to take a chance that old technology or problems would make her not like it and that would be the end of our RV'ing experience. So be careful what you buy and make sure your wife likes it.

Go on the Web site RVReady.com, it is located in Temecula CA and is owned by my brother in law's brother. I'm not trying to do an add here but he buys used MH's from a variety of sources, either makes them mechanically sound, new tires, batteries, misc equipment, or totally refurbishes them and resells them. He can do any additional work you would want, ie new furniture, windows, TV's, flooring ect. He is very reasonably priced and has alot of out of state customers. If you go on his web site you can see what is available at various price points. His are 100% warrantied for 60 or 90 days and he sells extended warranties as he meets all the requirements by the inspectors. He advised me the whole way when we were buying ours and even though I could have saved alot buying used, even he didn't think I should pass up the deal I got on the Newmar.

Gas vs diesel will start alot of debates and it is really a preference in my opinion. If your plan is to buy something reasonable just to get started and see if your family likes RV'ing I would go with the gas model. In my opinion they are easier to maintain and no more complicated than driving a car, other than the size. If you buy used you won't have too much money in it, so that when you do decide to buy new/bigger/diesel, you won't lose a bunch of money. As soon as I say this the debate will start, but my Gas model gets me everywhere the diesel model will and the new ford chassis is an excellent ride. The price for the Newmar with the equivelent floorplan and equipment as my gas model was $100,000 more in the diesel model. Not saying I will never go diesel, but we love ours.
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:13 AM   #11
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With all due respect, I'm not a Ford fan, but find this very hard to believe...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjva343 View Post
....With regard to the longevity of the Ford engine, I have one brother-in-law whose opinion I trust on mechanical matters, and he says that the Ford engine will crash and die within 50,000 miles.....
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:17 AM   #12
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Thats a broad statement for an engine that is used in thousands and thousands of trucks used by landscapers and contractors, every day.
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:27 AM   #13
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Add to all the above, the Ford V10 is about the only gas engine used in new motorhomes now. Would still be cheaper to replace than a diesel engine that I have heard could go to $30K
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:31 AM   #14
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I have heard that because of the weight the gasser is hauling its about used up by 100.000 miles. Now I know some of you have gotten over that figure (there are exceptions to every rule) but I'm talking over all. (average) We have taken an engine that is put into pickups and even my 460 was used in cars years ago, and now we're asking it to pull 15-20000 lbs plus maybe a toad. Over long grades (i.e. Colorado) and expect it to perform many miles beyond that. I just don't see it happening..Diesels are a whole different story...
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