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Old 03-04-2015, 03:06 PM   #1
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V10 tune up and alignment: Ford dealer claims bogus?

My rig just turned 10 years old and 33k miles. The tires are 2 years old. I have owned the rig for 1 year and it appears to be well taken care of. I am the 3rd owner. It has newer bilstein shocks.

Due to age of the rig and prepping for a trip this summer, I had the following done:

1. Tune up. This involved replacing all 10 spark plugs and 3 coil packs that were contributing to rare misfiring events when under load. The dealer did not replace the PCV valves. The misfire appears to be resolved.

2. Inspection of all hoses and belts to confirm that all are are in good shape.

3. Transmission fluid flush / service
4. Radiator flush
5. Thrust alignment. The dealer reported that there was no real alignment necessary and things looked fine. I have the printout. The trust angle read as out if tolerance at 0.91 degrees. (-.5 to .5 is the range)

6. Charging system inspection and battery (all passed).

In calling the dealer after, I asked if the hoses were in need of Replacement. They said "no" and claimed that only if there is a obvious leak or bulge and that hoses since 2001 or so are different in terms of longevity. (Seems fishy; 60k miles is a typical change interval; don't know about the time limit)

I also asked about the thrust alignment and they said that there is no adjustment. I see on the web that there are means to adjust this that often require going to a frame alignment shop. Should I care about this variance? I mentioned that I see tire wear on the outside edge of my front steering tire that does not appear on the passenger side tire nor on the inside of the tire. They stated that the alignment was in spec and perhaps it had been under-inflated (it hasn't). I doubt that the rear thrust angle is a contributor to the left tire item I notice, but hmm..

On the tuneup I asked why no PCV valve replacement and he claimed that is no longer done on the tuneup interval. I normally have replaced it when replacing plugs.

So - where do you agree and disagree with the dealer?

I've pulled the doghouse to look at the PCV location. Possible to change it but the area is pretty tight.
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Old 03-04-2015, 05:14 PM   #2
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Hi wanderso,
1. Hoses - disagree. I replace all hoses in the engine compartment every 10 years regardless of mileage.

2. Alignment - Take the coach to a truck frame/spring shop and get their opinion.

3. PCV - Agree - With the modern fuels and emissions, PCV valves last a long time.
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Old 03-04-2015, 05:30 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by GaryKD View Post
Hi wanderso,
1. Hoses - disagree. I replace all hoses in the engine compartment every 10 years regardless of mileage.

2. Alignment - Take the coach to a truck frame/spring shop and get their opinion.

3. PCV - Agree - With the modern fuels and emissions, PCV valves last a long time.
agree
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Old 03-04-2015, 07:05 PM   #4
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I went through all the same stuff when I bought a used Class C. The one thing I would suggest would be to flush each brake line & the master cylinder. Brake fluid is hydroscopic and will absorb moisture over the years. If you get them hot it can turn to steam and very little braking action. I also pulled the brake calipers & re-greased the pins. We drove the heck out of it with no breakdowns or problems.


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Old 03-04-2015, 07:25 PM   #5
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I agree with the brake fluid change and if it has anti-lock brakes there is a procedure for flushing that system as it builds up copper in the valves.


My engine is the same age but with 110,000 miles and I still have the same hoses, pcv valves and spark plugs/coil packs. I will probably change them this year but have no indications of trouble so far. They have come a long way in making parts more reliable.
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Old 03-04-2015, 11:30 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Duoglide1 View Post
I went through all the same stuff when I bought a used Class C. The one thing I would suggest would be to flush each brake line & the master cylinder. Brake fluid is hydroscopic and will absorb moisture over the years. If you get them hot it can turn to steam and very little braking action. I also pulled the brake calipers & re-greased the pins. We drove the heck out of it with no breakdowns or problems.


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Thanks - I actually changed the brake fluid shortly after purchasing - great tip though as well as greasing the pins.
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Old 03-05-2015, 06:39 PM   #7
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If anyone knows a good truck alignment shop in the Portland, Oregon area, that would be nice to know. Les Schwab for example has some of their shops that service trucks but I'm skeptical that they will do much for the thrust alignment portion (rear adjustment)
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Old 03-05-2015, 08:05 PM   #8
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So next time....

Explain what type of service it is that you desire.

If you desire service that is solely up to their prerogative, then have them write that on the work order.

If you desire service that includes SPECIFIC items to be tested and replaced it questionable, then have them write that on the work order and state that you need a print out of their diagnositics if any of the items you desire to be serviced are deemed "good to go".

You. You are responsible for the outcome. 99% of the people they see want the least amount done for the least amount of money to get the thing going again. They are simply not inclined to "over" service.
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Old 03-06-2015, 12:48 AM   #9
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V10 tune up and alignment: Ford dealer claims bogus?

Thanks for the thoughts. Good to ponder.

Actually I did share what I wanted done and got quotes before the job started and included a follow up written request when I dropped it off. I explained that the intent was to improve reliability for an extended trip, fix what might be an alignment issue and address items after reaching 10 years of age based on my not having full service records from the prior owner.

These were:

Alignment and root cause investigation for the drivers steer tire that was wearing unevenly. I was given assurance that they had the proper equipment. This dealer services the UPS trucks in our area.

Replacement of plugs and diagnostic and recommendation to correct engine miss when under load. If necessary include full tuneup.

Inspection of belts and hoses and recommendation for replacement. I indicated that I would pay for it if needed.

Tranny and radiator flush

We also walked through what was included in their multipoint inspection.

Where I could have been better was to simply get a quote for the hoses and proceed due to age. I do have the paperwork from the alignment, just thought it is lacking as it does not show indications of adjustments.

I agree that the rig owner is ultimately responsible for the work order, but the service team is also responsible to provide recommendations based on their ASE training, TSBs and other experience. That is or should be part of the high premium paid for the service. One can always choose to not adhere to those recommendations.
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Old 03-06-2015, 09:06 AM   #10
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There seem to be two schools of thought on hose replacement: (1) proactive (change on time or miles), and (2) replace when they fail.

Modern hoses have a long life, so I don't think that 60k miles or even 10 years is a good rule of thumb any more, but you should do what your are comfortable with. For myself, I just inspect mine annually (when I do routine service) and keep on trucking as long as they look to be in decent condition.

The thrust angle thing would depend on the chassis model - some may be adjustable and others might need bending or even cut & re-weld to alter the thrust angle. Thrust angle is determined by the rear axle positioning and many shops do not have the capability to alter that.

If they gave you a thrust angle read-out, they must have put it on an alignment machine to measure it. If the spec is indeed plus/minus 0.5 and they show a +0.91, then how can it be "in spec"? But you did not describe any issue that sounds like a rear alignment problem either. I think I would watch my tire wear closely and do nothing for now, but a more conservative approach would be to take the rig to a another alignment shop for a second opinion. If this is the Ford Class A chassis (F53), make that a heavy truck alignment shop, not a Ford dealer or local tire & alignment store.
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Old 03-07-2015, 02:54 PM   #11
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I give the Ford Dealer credit. Most dealers would have robbed you blind, saying you need this and you need that. It sounds like they inspected your coach and felt the hoses were in good shape. Respectfully, if you were not going to be satisfied unless the hoses were replaced, then you should have told the dealer that. I'm sure they would have gladly replaced the hoses.

Hope everything works out.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:01 AM   #12
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I give the Ford Dealer credit. Most dealers would have robbed you blind, saying you need this and you need that. It sounds like they inspected your coach and felt the hoses were in good shape. Respectfully, if you were not going to be satisfied unless the hoses were replaced, then you should have told the dealer that. I'm sure they would have gladly replaced the hoses.

Hope everything works out.

This has been a trustworthy dealer in the past based on other vehicles I have owned and were serviced. Only one bad experience with a faulty repair that they quickly rectified.

You are exactly right on the hoses and if I would be satisfied or not as I didn't ask to have them replaced - but rather - inspected to see if they show signs of potential failure or are in need of replacing. They saw them as fine and did exactly what I asked. I was seeking the experience of others as well to see if the typical rule of thumb as to age of hoses has changed and if I should have simply asked to do it anyways like I did with the spark plugs.

A bummer that I still have to fix is that I've not resolved the primary drivability issue that brought me to the dealer. Unfortunately I still am having an intermittent behavior on hills before it downshifts that exhibits what sounds to be preignition as well as a slight "shake / pulsation". It's not because I'm lugging the engine; it downshifts before that would be an issue. I had hoped that the misfiring fix (new plugs and 3 new coil packs) had solved the issue. A bad knock sensor, dirty mass air sensor, carbon buildup or even an injector issue I suppose could be the culprit but the pulsation is a head scratcher as to if it is ignition or fuel related or a combo of both. Over the counter injector cleaner - tried 2 different brands has had no impact. (Have never seen any real benefit from those anyway, regardless of brand). Running 87 octane.

Back to the them this week it goes...
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:32 AM   #13
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To adjust the thrust angle on your rig will require moving the spring perches on one side. As long as they referenced the .91deg thrust while adjusting fronts than all is well. All the .91deg will cause is a slight, very slight dog tracking while driving. You can see this by following any newer ford van as they all dog tracked from factory. A suggestion would be to change the other 7 coils as yours are the old style and the boots tended to fail causing a miss under load. And yup, do the hoses. I would hate to have one fail in a tight spot and hoses degrade from the inside out so externally its difficult to see an impending failure. Just my .02cents worth
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Old 03-08-2015, 09:18 AM   #14
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We had well over 100,000 miles on our 2001 Winnebago Adventurer on the Ford F53 chassis before we traded it off in 2013. In all those miles and all that time it still had the original hoses and serpentine belt. There is no need to change them unless there is evidence of leakage or other signs of failure.


While the alignment may have technically been within the specs the range is so wide it's quite possible the tires could still be wearing. We had a similar problem with our 2001. We had it to several truck alignment centers and never did get it perfect. To minimize the problem I rotated the tires every 20,000 miles or so.
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