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I'll be driving across country from North Carolina to California in the next 2 weeks and I was wondering what are some things I should check before leaving on the trip across the beautiful usa. There's nothing wrong that I know of she runs good, sounds good, the idle isn't variating. But I figured there's some preventative maintenance that I could conduct. I have a 2003 ford f250 7.3 with a 6' lift (rough country). Look forward to the communities advice, thanks.
 

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Double check to make sure you really want to go to Kalifornia. If you do, then check your belt,. I'd actually get a new one and put your old one behind the seat as a spare. While it's off, check every pulley for play. Check all radiator hoses. If you don't have the top hose that goes around the belt, swap it. Clean air filter. Fresh oil. Check the axle lube. Do your wheel bearing maintenance and check your brakes. Spare tire inflated? Got your jack and tools? Still sure you want to go to the ROK? Got all your shots? I'd carry a gallon of antifreeze and oil, and a couple quarts of ATF. Wipers ok? All fluids topped off?
 

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have some spare CPS, some oil, coolant, Lot of additives if you use in your fuel tank. I just did British Colombia (Canada) to Quebec (canada) last September and will be doing the other way to british Colombian next week (will probably be going trough USA). what I do before leaving is oil change with new filter and new fuel filter. I check all other oil level (trans, diff, transfer case and coolant). in the back I have bunch of tools in my tools box, jack, jack stand, some engine and trans oil and bunch of piece of wood.
 

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RT got a good point, GOOD WIPER, windshield washer and CLEAN INSIDE and OUTSIDE of the windshield
 

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Double check to make sure you really want to go to Kalifornia. If you do, then check your belt,. I'd actually get a new one and put your old one behind the seat as a spare. While it's off, check every pulley for play. Check all radiator hoses. If you don't have the top hose that goes around the belt, swap it. Clean air filter. Fresh oil. Check the axle lube. Do your wheel bearing maintenance and check your brakes. Spare tire inflated? Got your jack and tools? Still sure you want to go to the ROK? Got all your shots? I'd carry a gallon of antifreeze and oil, and a couple quarts of ATF. Wipers ok? All fluids topped off?
How do I check the axle lube? Thats one I never thought of.

Thanks
 

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JMarty,

Be sure to enjoy the low diesel prices...you will never drive across the country for so cheap again ;-)



.
 

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I'll tell you the same thing that was told to me in '09 by a senior member when I was planning my cross country jaunt:


"carry a credit card with a HIGH limit and LOW balance".
 

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How do I check the axle lube? Thats one I never thought of.



Thanks

On the driver's side of the pumpkin on the rear axle is a fill plug. You use a 3/8" ratchet to unscrew it. Oil needs to be to the level of the plug.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hey guys sorry for the late reply, work has me bouncing off the walls, so, yes I have to go to california, I don't have a choice in the matter. It's where I'll be staitioned. I saw alot of advice from all of you and I want to thank you guys, there alot of things that were mentioned that I don't have a clue about. And it's pretty much moat of it, I can Google it and figure it out and start looking it all up and get familiar with her. It came with straight pipes so that's one thing I know I'll have to change before I leave or when I get there. The owner just cut it out and welded a pipe on there :\. Anywho I will start going through all the suggestions one by one and conduct all the possible preventive maintenance. This will certainly be a journey
 

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An inexpensive but quality muffler is the Walker BTM (Big Truck Muffler).

You can order the stock 3-1/2" or if your pipes are aftermarket there is also a 4" option.
 

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On the driver's side of the pumpkin on the rear axle is a fill plug. You use a 3/8" ratchet to unscrew it. Oil needs to be to the level of the plug.
I should have said "front".

Thanks!
 

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Don't you have a fill plug in the cover of your Dana 60?
 

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Double check to make sure you really want to go to Kalifornia. If you do, then check your belt,. I'd actually get a new one and put your old one behind the seat as a spare. While it's off, check every pulley for play. Check all radiator hoses. If you don't have the top hose that goes around the belt, swap it. Clean air filter. Fresh oil. Check the axle lube. Do your wheel bearing maintenance and check your brakes. Spare tire inflated? Got your jack and tools? Still sure you want to go to the ROK? Got all your shots? I'd carry a gallon of antifreeze and oil, and a couple quarts of ATF. Wipers ok? All fluids topped off?




That's alot to take in, well on base they have a hobby shop with tools and all, even lifts, that's kind of a big list and I'm not sure where to start, like taking my belt off and putting a new one on. What top hose around the belt? I don't have tools, is there like a starter/cheap thing or set I could get my hands on
 

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A broken serpentine belt will leave you stranded on the side of the road so its good to be pro-active and change it before that happens :winking: there are many DIY videos on YouTube. Here is one:
http://youtu.be/u9uobrGJVtg

Here is the best deal on a new Serpentine belt. (This is for engines with only one alternator.)

Gates K081223HD Fleet Runner Micro-V Belt - Walmart.com

Most of our 7.3s came from the factory with a top radiator hose that is routed through the serpentine belt and it needs to be removed to change the belt. While it is off this is a perfect time to install a new top hose that routes outside of the belt. It was used on ambulances with two alternators and it doesn't have to be removed every time you change your belt. It costs about $20. Here is a photo of the "good" style top hose. Maybe the previous owner already swapped yours?

RT has suggested that you inspect the pulleys when you have the belt off (maybe someone can give you pointers on what to look for if you only want to inspect them). You want to inspect them and roll them by hand while they are not under tension of the belt. There are two seperate parts you need to inspect. The first is the idler pulley and it is a single pulley. The second is the belt tensioner and it is one part with 2 pulleys.

If you decide to replace them then the cheapest place to buy genuine Ford parts is Tousley AutoNation Ford. They are a site sponsor.

One question you will need to think about is if you want to always replace parts with Ford OEM or if you will try and save money buying after-market parts. This is a personal choice but many guys here like to stick with Ford OEM. Here is the online parts catalog for Tousley Ford. They charge a flat 10% above cost and even with shipping they are always cheaper than your local Dealership.

AutoNation Ford White Bear Lake | Parts & Accessories
 

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Don't you have a fill plug in the cover of your Dana 60?
Well I am going to feel like a real greenhorn if I do :winking:

Thanks RT.
 

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You can always say it was too damn cold to slide under and look!

On your hose picture - Yours is a perfect example of this. Diesels vibrate. Anytime a hose is next to something hard, it will wear through. The driver's side CAC hose is one example. The pressure hose out of the power steering pump is one. And this hose is one. See where that cool metal recess in the alternator mount hugs the hose? You can make out its impression on your upper hose already. Wrap that portion of the hose with a few layers of bicycle inner tube and zip tie that puppy into the recess to keep it from bouncing into the fan belt.

On a side note - your hose looks like its sucked in pretty good. Why are you running a vacuum on your cooling system?
 
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