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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have always had gas engines and feel like I need to switch to diesel now that I purchased a new Toy Hauler. I have a 3/4ton Chevy Crew Cab now but am considering switching to Ford /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif. I know life expectancy of the diesel engines depends heavily upon maintenance. The truck I am looking at right now has 154K miles. If it were a gas engine, I would not touch it with a 10'pole. With it being diesel though I am clueless as to what is consider too high of mileage to buy. If I get to the dealer and find out it was maintained would this truck be good for another 100k? Also, what should I look for? From readings this forum I guess I should pull the hose from the turbo and check the blades and also for dust behind the air filter. I have heard a lot of bad about the auto tranny's is there anything I should check on those such as a certain build date or what? any other little places to look for wear or mistreatment? I appreciate the help!
 

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Honestly the 2002 is a solid truck. I would check and see if there are any broken clips holding the air box on. Even if there isn't any broken, open it up and check for dust/debris on the intake tube. Get up under it BEFORE you start it, check for Oil leaks. Find out the maintainence history if available. Check the driveshaft's for play. Check the front tires, after backing into a parking space and moving the wheel back and forth, if they lean like this //==o=\\ then the truck has probably got bad ball joints. CHeck the engine oil level and what the Oil looks like. Check the Tranny fluid and its color. Check the coolant level. TURN THE TRUCK ON YOURSELF. Listen to it idle, sit in it, there should be minimal "shimmy's", and drive it. Not just around the block, since the engine isn't warmed up, drive it for a long time. Once the Temp guage reads about 1/3 up then you can give her some go pedal. IF it's sluggish with a full foot, could be a weak HPOP, a new HPOP costs $$$. Make sure the tranny shifts SMOOTHLY and strongly. A BTS tranny is about $3800, a ford rebuilt one is about $2,000. Hopefully you can test drive it for about 30 min, on the highway and on city streets. Once this is done, look under the truck again for oil leaks. Check the rears for leaks. There are a million other things you could do, but those are starting points!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
maintain, thanks a lot for the advice. I will make sure to check it all out. I like how you even got the pumpkin on the right side, lol. The truck has 315x**x16or17 tires. I am not sure exact size. I have heard that they will wear very quick on that truck. I might try to get them to put some new tires on it if I go through with the deal.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
With it being diesel though I am clueless as to what is consider too high of mileage to buy. If I get to the dealer and find out it was maintained would this truck be good for another 100k?

[/ QUOTE ]

Depends on proper maintenance, warm-up, and shut down procedures - and luck. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/shocked.gif

With proper maintenance and proper driving habits, the engine should last at least 300,000 miles, and probably 400,000 miles. For warm up, don't allow a cold engine to idle with no load on the engine. Crank the engine, and as soon as you have oil pressure put it in gear and move out. Baby it until the coolant gauge moves off the peg, then be nice until the engine gets up to normal operating temp. For shut down, never turn off the engine until the exhaust gas temp (EGT) falls to 300º or less - that takes anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes, depending on how hot the engine was when you stopped.

I bought mine new, maintained and drove it right, and it now has 152,000 mostly-towing miles on it. I can't afford to replace it, so I expect it to last until they throw dirt in my face or 400,000 miles, whichever comes first. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif

The stock auto tranny in "your" pickup probably won't last much longer, unless it's already been replaced. So plan on a trip to Arkansas and have a BTS installed for about $4,000. The BTS will then outlast the engine. (I had a BTS installed with about 112,000 miles on mine, and I expect to have no tranny problems "forever".)

A rebuilt Ford automatic tranny and torque converter with a 2-year warranty costs less than $2,000 for the parts, but it will probably cost you about $2,400 or a bit more out the door. If you want it to last more than 100,000 miles, then never let it get over about 225º, use synthetic ATF, and change the ATF every 30,000 miles using the procedures in the '99-up FAQ.

[ QUOTE ]
if it makes a big difference, the Toy Hauler is 13000lbs max weight and will be towed about 1-2 times a month.

[/ QUOTE ]

Your GCWR is 20,000 pounds, so when towing the toy hauler you'll probably be slightly over that limit. But the diesel engine will certainly handle that load a whole lot better than any gasser engine.

For that load, you need both a tranny temp gauge and a pyrometer. The stock tranny temp gauge is almost useless, so get a "real" gauge with clear markings around the 220º to 230º temp area.

Install the sender (thermocouple) for the pyrometer before the turbo, then use 1,250º as the red line. When climbing a grade with the trailer, drive by the pyrometer and don't let it go over 1,250.

Install the sender for the tranny temp gauge in the pressure port on the side of the tranny. Normal tranny temp is anything less than 200º. Slow speed and high torque can cause the tranny temp to zoom over 200, so watch the gauge and don't allow more than about 225 to 230. Backing the trailer up a grade is the most likely cause for overheating. Also, towing up a steep grade at less than 40 MPH. Even stuck in a traffic jam and crawling along at 5 MPH can cause high tranny temp when towing a heavy trailer.
 

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The 315's, with no lift, are too big. When you get the truck, drop down to at least 285's. 315's, depending on whether they are A/T's or Road tires will be right around 34" or 35". Remember with the larger tires your effectively lowering your rear gear ratio and probably rubbing the hell out of the front end. I presume your truck has 3.73's, but when hauling that large of a trailer, the more "stock" size tires will handle it better. Also remember that with the larger tires that your speedo and Odometer will be off. IF that truck came with 265(stock) and has run 315's all of its life and the Odometer reads 154,000 the mileage is really at about 170,000 miles. If there is no maintainence history I would be very finicky about the price and explain your concerns and with the info that SmokeyWren and I have given you should make you look like you know what you're looking at and the seller should lower the price. I'm sure they don't know about the 315's throwing the odometer off that much!

BTW how much does he want? Let us know and we could probably give you a figure to go ask for after going for a test drive and checking out the truck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The truck is at a dealer. They are asking $24,600. I do not plan on paying that much for that truck. I am headed up to the dealer tonight. Here is the truck http://www.truckheavenusa.com/html/frames/5263.html and it is at www.truckheaven.com . I am going to look at the other ones they have in stock though. I appreciate all the advice, I think it will definitely make my buying experience much easier.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
The truck has 315x**x16or17 tires. I am not sure exact size.

[/ QUOTE ]

As Maintain indicated, this is a terrible choice for towing. 8.2 percent difference in the rear end ratio means your 3.73 will "feel like" a 3.42. That's fine for unloaded cruising, but awful for towing 13,000 pounds.

If the speedo was calibrated to match the tall tires, then the odo and speedo will be accurate. If not, they will be 8.2 percent low.

Bling bling and "kwel" looks of big tires on a 4x4 are fine for unloaded cruising, but they have no place on a towing machine. If you can get them to put new tires on it, then go for the stock size of LT265/75R16E. Or if you care more about image than towing capability, then maybe compromise on LT285/75R16D. Those are only 4.7 percent change in effective rear end ratio, speedo and odo. I wore out one set of 285s on my towing machine, and it did real good with my hot-rod mods, but my 5er grosses only 8,000 pounds. With a 5er grossing 13,000 pounds, I would not want to tow with anything taller than stock tires.
 

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Thats allot of money for that truck given the miles - but it looks nice. I would sell my 2001 CC DRW 7.3/auto with 89,000 miles for about $22,000, and it just had a alligator interior installed!
 

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[ QUOTE ]
The truck is at a dealer. They are asking $24,600. I do not plan on paying that much for that truck. I am headed up to the dealer tonight.

[/ QUOTE ]

IMO thats at least $8,000 too high. ...R
 

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As you can see in sig. ive got over 205k on my truck,and hope for at least another 100k. I have had no major breaks, or fixes. Maintenance, Maintenance, and more Maintenance and the truck will last as long as you need it to.

If the truck has no lift the 315s are definatley too big. If it has a lift and the wheels have the proper offset, I.e. not stock, then you should not have any scrubbing problems.

If you are towing that toy hauler and it has not been done, upgrade gearsets to the 4.30s and that will put you back in the correct power and rpm range for the truck.

24,600 thats a bit high for that many miles unless your market just doesn't have that many used trucks in it. If youv'e got a friend who could take you to an auction you might come out better.
BD
 

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i paid 16,000 for mine including tax tag and title.she was bone stock and clean as a whistle.i got it out of the truck trader and talked him doun from 16,500 and made him include every thing else.i shoped around for 2 months and test drove alot of trucks i test drove this one and then walked away told him he wanted to much then came back a few days later to chizle on him some more.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
I have always had gas engines and feel like I need to switch to diesel now that I purchased a new Toy Hauler. I have a 3/4ton Chevy Crew Cab now but am considering switching to Ford /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif. I know life expectancy of the diesel engines depends heavily upon maintenance. The truck I am looking at right now has 154K miles. If it were a gas engine, I would not touch it with a 10'pole. With it being diesel though I am clueless as to what is consider too high of mileage to buy. If I get to the dealer and find out it was maintained would this truck be good for another 100k? Also, what should I look for? From readings this forum I guess I should pull the hose from the turbo and check the blades and also for dust behind the air filter. I have heard a lot of bad about the auto tranny's is there anything I should check on those such as a certain build date or what? any other little places to look for wear or mistreatment? I appreciate the help!

[/ QUOTE ]



Don't forget, even if you kept those tires, that raises the truck, which also makes the trailer ride uneven. Therefore the distance between the trailer and the bed reduces and you'll probably be looking for a good autobody shop some day if you get in a pickle. Easy to do with a big trailer. The sweet spot for towing at least with an unchipped 7.3 is 1900-2000 RPM, which is usually 70 MPH. So with your tires, you'll probably want to run in excess of 70 to stay in the sweet spot while in OD. Otherwise you can slow down, pull w/o OD, and pay more at the pump.

Also, I have the same truck, with 285 16's, in 100 miles the speedo calculates 97, so for every 400 miles, you need to add 12 when you hand calc your mileage. Not a big difference, but for reference it will make you feel a tad better when towing. Expect 9-11 MPG when towing in normal conditions... Don't mod the truck without gauges installed, and at the very minimum, either remove the muffler which has a nice throaty sound or install a Walker BTM. EASY if you have access to a small mig.

Just some quick thoughts.

Good luck and welcome hopefully to the good side.. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif

BTW, Welcome anyway to the Site... It's addictive...

MUSCLFORD /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smokin.gif
 

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OH, another kinda expensive thing to look for is weak balljoints (They are non greasable and can be very pricey) with that many miles and steering wander. See if you have to work to keep it on the road. I drove one that it was all over the place. Mine was so different. It holds the road so easy, better than any car...

Musclford /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smokin.gif
 

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The Truck in the picture says it is a 2002, but has the 2003 6.0 badging (diesel badge on door). Maybe the price is that high because the truck is really an 03 or 04! Also with the 315's, they may not be rated to handle as much weight so I would down size at least to 285's. This truck is a dually, so your rear is a 4.10 and with 285's you'll be fine hauling 13,000lbs. Also the truck's front end seems to be too high to be stock (even with 315's) I think it may have a leveling kit on it, be sure to check it out! Also go through the checklist and make sure it has the 7.3.

I'd still throw some cash in their face since they are a second hand dealership (not a chain, probably privately owned) and they will not be able to stand the smell of money not being handed to them. I'd offer 20,000 even because of the miles and if there is no service/paper trail history I would offer less.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
The Truck in the picture says it is a 2002, but has the 2003 6.0 badging (diesel badge on door).

[/ QUOTE ]

You have better eyes than I do. All 7.3L SuperDutiy PSDs except the early '99 have the diesel badge on the door. The 6.0L badge is a slightly different color, but it's in the same place. And that photo is not good enough for me to tell whether the badge is a 7.3L or a 6.0L badge.

[ QUOTE ]
This truck is a dually, so your rear is a 4.10 ...

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Not necessarily. 3.73 open axle was standard, and 4.10 LS was optional on a Dooley.

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...and with 285's you'll be fine hauling 13,000lbs.

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May be "fine", but overloaded over the GCWR of 20,000 pounds.

Since the truck has 315 rear tires, it must have aftermarket wheels too. 315s - and even 285s - on stock Dooley wheels will rub between the duals and blow out in a hurry. The biggest tire you should run on stock Dooley wheels is 255/85R16.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I got to the dealer and the truck was not even on the lot. When I called they had priced me on a different truck. The $24,600 was on an 03 6.0L dually stock tires. I am now looking at an 03 6.0L CrewCab XLT with 80Kmiles they are asking $28,800 but their website has it for $25,900 and I told them I will buy it if they can get it to $24K
 

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[ QUOTE ]
I got to the dealer and the truck was not even on the lot. When I called they had priced me on a different truck. The $24,600 was on an 03 6.0L dually stock tires. I am now looking at an 03 6.0L CrewCab XLT with 80Kmiles they are asking $28,800 but their website has it for $25,900 and I told them I will buy it if they can get it to $24K

[/ QUOTE ]

If I were you, I'd steer clear of an 03 6.0L. That was the 1st year the engine was put in production and they had A LOT of problems with them. I'm sure somebody else will chime in and give you a run down of problems the 6.0 has/had when they 1st came out. Just hate for someone to pay 25k for a truck that's going to give them a life time of problems. Good luck!
 
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