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Mid 2000's 5.4 liter 3 Valve Ford

Discussion in 'Sound Off (MichiganForums.com)' started by FishMichv2, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. FishMichv2

    FishMichv2

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    I know this topic has been covered a lot over the years in the auto world but I haven't found much info regarding longevity if left unchanged. Anyone have this engine and never do any work on the cam phaser? Did you eventually experience issues aside from the knocking? Eventual serious engine problems? My '04 runs great but that knocking is scary and annoying. It's not nearly as bad as some I have heard and I bought it used so I don't know if the cam phaser has been worked on. I have heard a lot of mixed talk about whether or not it is worth changing them. Any thoughts from you Ford truck guys here?
     
  2. UnknwnBanditRowdyTucoRojo

    UnknwnBanditRowdyTucoRojo

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    No, though I read up on them a bit recently. Was looking at a mint 2010, decided against.

    If I recall correctly, the two biggest issues to get on top of immediately are timing chain (and something else)... plus difficulty changing plugs, etc. Ford apparently made improvements for these common problems after 2008MY.

    The key advice was getting on any issue with associated noise right away and not putting it off.
     

  3. CHASINEYES

    CHASINEYES

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    Guy I work with just did his himself. His got bad enough that the engine was intermittently stalling then wouldn't start. After getting it all buttoned up he found out his oil pressure was almost gone. Metal pieces from the phaser or chain? somehow got into the crank journals. He's looking for a replacement engine...

    Another coworkers 04 makes the noise but it keeps on ticking without drivability issues.
     
  4. CHASINEYES

    CHASINEYES

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    Some of the early 5.4s experienced piston slap. Maybe that's the other. Phazers, chains and plugs were the big issues I know of.
     
  5. Nitro225Optimax

    Nitro225Optimax

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    The reason it’s so critical is because the 5.4L is an interference engine. Meaning, if the Cam phaser or timing chains go, pistons will be slamming into valves and results in total engine destruction.


    Sent from my iPhone using Michigan Sportsman mobile app
     
    jiggin is livin and ESOX like this.
  6. UnknwnBanditRowdyTucoRojo

    UnknwnBanditRowdyTucoRojo

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    I think FMv2 got the needed answers, but maybe more could chime in.

    It was timing chain and cam phaser I read mentioned as the two most common problems, one's not to ignore. ... and as you wrote, plugs and piston slap. The reasons Nitro gave seem to make sense.

    I haven't torn down an engine since about thirty years ago. I only know I wouldn't attempt that heavy work anymore and that I want to avoid the riskier culprits and their failures. I don't pull anything too heavy and a 3.7L FF V6 would probably suffice. As for Ford V8's, someone told me the 5L coyote was one of the most reliable. The articles I recently read proposed that the 3.5L or the 2.7L TT V6 might prove to be Ford's most reliable in time. The potential cost of replacing turbos makes me wonder.


    Apologies to the OPer for this off-topic stuff, but you did write "any thoughts". :chillin:
     
  7. FishMichv2

    FishMichv2

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    Thanks for the replies. The spark plugs have been dealt with on this truck but I don't know the history of any cam phaser work that might have been done. The knocking/ticking in this one is quieter than I have heard in others. Some I have heard sound like diesels almost. I'm gonna have to search my soul and decide if it is something I want to tackle.
     
  8. Magnet

    Magnet

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    I had a '98 with the 4.6l.... I put 250,000 miles on it with no major issues. This truck felt like it lacked power.

    I had an '05 with the 5.4l..... I put 250,00 miles on it with no major issues. Cam Phaser noise/knock from about 80,000 miles... I ignored it (and it was loud) and continued with scheduled oil changes. I did have the plugs replaced at 190,000.... that sucked.

    I had an '11 with the 3.5l TT.... I put 250,000 miles on it with no major issues. This was by far the best motor I've ever had in a 1/2 ton truck.

    Now I have a '15 with the 2.7l TT.... I have 38,000 miles on it with no issues. Not as much power as the 3.5l TT, but surprisingly sufficient. More than enough power to pull my boats and quad trailers back and forth from the UP.

    The most important thing with any vehicle is religiously changing the oil. I'm a firm believer in premium synthetics.
     
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  9. FishMichv2

    FishMichv2

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    What oil did you run in your '05? I know what the manufacturer suggested oil is but I have heard some people prefer heavier oil.
     
  10. hypox

    hypox

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    Sounds like you've had good luck. What synthetic do you use?
     
  11. Magnet

    Magnet

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    I ran Royal Purple. I think it was 5w20?? It was the recommended oil weight for the 5.4l.

    Also, I only change the oil every 7,500 to 8,000 miles. That's one of the benefits of using full synthetic. Costs a little more up front, but I believe it pays me back over time.
     
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  12. CHASINEYES

    CHASINEYES

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    Might have a bad chain tensioner. Slight chain slap. At any rate, the tear down is gonna be the same. All in the front. Just my opinion, once you get down to the chain, you replace everything anyway. I believe its such a common repair that everything is sold as a kit. Phasers, tensioners, chains etc.... Probably don't need to mention this if your a dyi-er, but Ytube is your friend... Lots of good vids. I'm a subscriber to this guy posted below. He's very informative and thorough in describing issues and their causes... He might be a little by the book at times so I look around for work shortcuts.

     
  13. stickbow shooter

    stickbow shooter

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    I have a 97 with a 4.6 motor in it. It's got close to 180,000 on it . Only had the plugs changed once but religiously change the ok I every 3000 -4000 miles. The body has about rusted away and have had tranny problems. Also exhaust manifolds have holes them. I have had to replace tons of parts like rear end, brake booster whole brake system including every line but one. Now It's just my wood getting truck.
     
  14. CHASINEYES

    CHASINEYES

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    I put around 330,000 on my 99 4.6. A little under powered for an extended cab but it got the job done. Used nothing but valvoline 10w30 in the 4.6.. And always a good oil filter. Motorcraft or napa gold.... I tried fram once and had cold start rattle/ticks. Fram filters don't seem to hold oil up in the engine once shut down. A drain back issue.. Promptly changed to a napa gold and cold start noises were gone.

    I have an 2011 3.5 TT. Bought that one used. Shortly after I needed timing chains. That was almost 100,000 miles ago. I use motorcraft synthetic blend and motorcraft oil filters on this one.
     
  15. FishMichv2

    FishMichv2

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    My god, that is an awful noise, lol. Mine is nothing like that thankfully.