The Hull Truth - Boating and Fishing Forum

Go Back   The Hull Truth - Boating and Fishing Forum > BOATING FORUMS > Dockside Chat
Search

Notices

Random Quote: I feel dumber now than I did before you said that!
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10-20-2011, 03:41 AM
  #1    
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: A store where the people meet
Posts: 4,147
Default Ford Triton 5.4 Spark Plug & Coil Replacement

Guys, I'd like to get a few opinions from those that have 1st hand experience with these engines. Mine is a 2007 in the Expedition El. Now getting close to 70,000 miles, by early summer 2012 it'll most likely hit 70,000, and, I may be hauling my cantankerous rear-end on up far north for a much needed mini-vacation (compared to past northern vacations)

I feel the time is NOW to replace my spark plugs in this beast. Actually, I wanted to replace them at 35,000 miles, just because I have heard of how the plugs like to break off in the cylinder heads, creating a nightmare of what should be a simple job. My local dealership told me I was wasting my time, the plugs were good until "at least" 100,000 miles, and, that if they were going to break they would break at 35,000 just as easily as they would at 100,000.

Well, one thing lead to another, and, I didn't replace them as yet. A few thousand miles ago, the engine developed an intermittent driving issue. When passing, or getting down on the accelerator the motor sometimes will act as if it is "missing" and pretty bad, at that. It'll cause the whole vehicle to jerk and I can hear the motor cutting out, very rapidly, but as soon as I back off the pedal, she smooths right out.

I don't feel it's a fuel filter (Dealer was supposed to have replaced it @ 30,000 miles...but, have my doubts...I bought one and intend to install it prior to doing anything else) or delivery issue. It feels like a faulty ignition coil almost, or failing spark plug. These motors aren't like the old ones that you can power-brake to make the problem reveal itself under load. I don't know much about the ignition systems on these newer vehicles, but, I think each cylinder has its very own ignition coil mounted right over the spark plug?

I would like to know what are your thoughts & experience related to any of the above...and, ANY advice/tips when removing & installing the old/new spark plugs. Do you coat the new threads with any type anti-seize? Are there any special tools I should purchase prior to beginning the job? Does it even sound like this may be the problem or does anyone think it may be something else? I appreciate any advice/help/comments that may guide me in the proper direction.

Oh, one last thought here. I normally use brand name parts specific to the vehicle whenever possible and/or practical. That would mean Motorcraft spark plugs (Unless Ford recommends something other than their own brand, haven't gotten that far yet) but, I was looking at some pretty expensive BOSCH spark plugs for my engine. I am not sure, but, I think they were the Titanium or Platinum plugs with the "specially" designed electrodes with the grove cut into it so it fires more reliably and something about two or three sparks are created at multiple contact points rather than just the standard single spark. Anyway, whatever they are supposed to do, anybody here ever use these Bosch plugs and if so, what are your thoughts about their performance as opposed to the regular style plugs?

THANKS! in advance
AGENT86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 03:49 AM
  #2    
Admirals Club
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Iowa
Posts: 7,692
Default

I had a 2004 Expedition with a 5.4 and never changed the plugs. When I got rid of it it had 140,000 miles on it and still got the same mileage as when I bought it new. Personally I wouldn't touch them since they have this known issue.

On another note they are famous for leaking intake gaskets leaking oil out the rear. If this happens then it will be much easier to change the plugs at that time, because everything will be out of the way.
__________________
Lund 1850 Tyee
Mariner 150 HP
Lowrance electronics
MinnKota trolling motor
Best part ITS PAID FOR
davidkuhlmann is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Old 10-20-2011, 03:52 AM
  #3    
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: A store where the people meet
Posts: 4,147
Default

WOW! 140,000 miles and never changed the plugs. Maybe it's a coil and not the plugs? I guess that would be something for the dealer trained mechanic to determine. Food for thought, thanks!

Oh, BTW, as of yet, not a single oil leak anywhere...lucky.
AGENT86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 04:23 AM
  #4    
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: winter garden fl / Tiger Ga
Posts: 1,601
Default

the plugs are good for 100,000, coil packs going bad is a common occurence for these fords, they make a tool to remove the broken plugs which is also a common problem, warm the motor before trying to remove the plugs. I service three fleets with ford E-250's f-150's and ranger pick ups other than a few quirks they are very good vehicles when maintained properly

You can plug a scan tool in if the engine light is on and it will tell you which coil it is, even if the light isn't on I would still scan it it will sometimes store the code.
oceandansar is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 04:26 AM
  #5    
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: JAX FL
Posts: 1,483
Default

Sorry I have the earlier 5.4 that shoots plugs out at random intervals so I can't help on the plug change. I will tell you I had the same symptons you are having on a couple of occasions and it was always a bad coil. If you have a code reader pull the codes even if the check engine light is not on. If you see a cylinder miss fire code then is probably the coil. Also the fact it is intermitant would lead me to think it is a coil. F150 online has tons of good info on your plug isssue.

Good luck
__________________
2000 McKee 1800 Pulse/ 2014 Mercury 150
1998 Shamrock 220
SHAMROCK69 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 04:31 AM
  #6    
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Sebastian, FL
Posts: 518
Default

You could wait till 100k to replace them. But if you have a bad coil and have to change it, why not install new plugs and boots. When you do replace the plugs, do the boots too. I would definitely use Motorcraft plugs. Why run something else if the Motorcraft plugs are designed for that vehicle an they last that long.

You should take it to a local Autozone or equivilant store. They will scan it for free and let you know what the problem is. Then you can fix that problem.

With the ethanol in the fuel these days, I change my filters every 15-20k.
turbo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 04:42 AM
  #7    
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: A store where the people meet
Posts: 4,147
Default

GREAT! info here, everybody...GREAT!
I will have it scanned for any codes at the local Auto-Zone, even though the Check Engine light is not on, it did pop on about 15,000 miles ago for a short duration when the RCS system was acting up. Could be related to the RCS, or, may be a coil as well.

Thanks for all the great info, so far! Makes me feel a lot more confident in what lies ahead.
AGENT86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 05:05 AM
  #8    
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 254
Default

There is a tool that makes this an easy fix. I had two break off but I had purchased the tool prior to starting work. Got it on ebay used for like $20. I then sold it for $30 once I was done. You will need a vacum cleaner to get down in the chamber if you break one off.
StPeteRebel is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 06:04 AM
  #9    
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: shelby twp MI
Posts: 1,783
Default

If pulling a plug is a concern, shoot some Kroil or PB Blaster on the plugs a couple days prior to pulling them. They'll come right out. More than likely it's a fried coil. The ones in the back can suck replacing. I have an '00 F-350 for a service truck with the 5.4 and had to replace the coil packs. Had a missing problem when it was running around 1500 RPM's. Mine is the version that it likes to shoot plugs out of the cylinder so I need the lock washers. I just get motorcraft plugs, but I went with the Bosch coil packs.
__________________
Jim
2000 220 Shamrock WA
tinmarine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 07:49 AM
  #10    
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: New York
Posts: 327
Default

I had mine done at 33k miles. I bought my 2007 Expy EL last year used and just wanted to replace everything as preventative maintenance. I had a friend who is a mechanic do them for me. Bought the motorcraft plugs from rockauto.com. He told me two broke when trying to remove them but he had the tool so it was not a problem. He used some type of anti sieze when reinstalling so I will hopefully not have problem in the future.

Just as an FYI, he did not properly tighten two plugs when reinstalling and the engine developed what sounded like a lifter tap as well as a gas leak smell. Before I figured it out, I took it to the dealership 3 times and they could not figure out where the noise or smell was coming from. I finally figured out that it was just two loose plugs and problem solved. My recomendation is get the special tool and make sure you have flexible extensions for your sockets as the rear plugs are a little difficult to get out. Good Luck.
__________________
2004 Striper 2101 W/A with 175 Evinrude
sunbird is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 08:52 AM
  #11    
Senior MemberCaptains Club MemberPLEDGERPLEDGER
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Struggleville
Posts: 6,807
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by AGENT86 View Post
Guys, I'd like to get a few opinions from those that have 1st hand experience with these engines. Mine is a 2007 in the Expedition El. Now getting close to 70,000 miles, by early summer 2012 it'll most likely hit 70,000, and, I may be hauling my cantankerous rear-end on up far north for a much needed mini-vacation (compared to past northern vacations)

I feel the time is NOW to replace my spark plugs in this beast. Actually, I wanted to replace them at 35,000 miles, just because I have heard of how the plugs like to break off in the cylinder heads, creating a nightmare of what should be a simple job. My local dealership told me I was wasting my time, the plugs were good until "at least" 100,000 miles, and, that if they were going to break they would break at 35,000 just as easily as they would at 100,000.



Well, one thing lead to another, and, I didn't replace them as yet. A few thousand miles ago, the engine developed an intermittent driving issue. When passing, or getting down on the accelerator the motor sometimes will act as if it is "missing" and pretty bad, at that. It'll cause the whole vehicle to jerk and I can hear the motor cutting out, very rapidly, but as soon as I back off the pedal, she smooths right out.

I don't feel it's a fuel filter (Dealer was supposed to have replaced it @ 30,000 miles...but, have my doubts...I bought one and intend to install it prior to doing anything else) or delivery issue. It feels like a faulty ignition coil almost, or failing spark plug. These motors aren't like the old ones that you can power-brake to make the problem reveal itself under load. I don't know much about the ignition systems on these newer vehicles, but, I think each cylinder has its very own ignition coil mounted right over the spark plug?

I would like to know what are your thoughts & experience related to any of the above...and, ANY advice/tips when removing & installing the old/new spark plugs. Do you coat the new threads with any type anti-seize? Are there any special tools I should purchase prior to beginning the job? Does it even sound like this may be the problem or does anyone think it may be something else? I appreciate any advice/help/comments that may guide me in the proper direction.

Oh, one last thought here. I normally use brand name parts specific to the vehicle whenever possible and/or practical. That would mean Motorcraft spark plugs (Unless Ford recommends something other than their own brand, haven't gotten that far yet) but, I was looking at some pretty expensive BOSCH spark plugs for my engine. I am not sure, but, I think they were the Titanium or Platinum plugs with the "specially" designed electrodes with the grove cut into it so it fires more reliably and something about two or three sparks are created at multiple contact points rather than just the standard single spark. Anyway, whatever they are supposed to do, anybody here ever use these Bosch plugs and if so, what are your thoughts about their performance as opposed to the regular style plugs?

THANKS! in advance


The mechanic fkd up one of the coil spring when removing it. The fire is having to "jump" to the spring. Very, very common. I'd just go ahead and replace them all. Make sure you used OEM plugs also. They're is a difference.
Bugbuster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 01:56 PM
  #12    
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: A store where the people meet
Posts: 4,147
Default

Checking in for a couple minutes...Excellent info here...I knew I'd get all the info I needed on THT! Also wondering...I bought mine late 2006 so it's actually considered the 2007 year model. I believe the actual date of manufacture is November '06, but would really need to look to be 100% sure. So, exactly WHEN was the years that the plugs were most likely to blow out of the cylinder heads? Is that something I should be concerned about, other than, if I don't tighten them correctly myself?

I would think that with close to 70,000 miles if a plug was going to blow out, it would have already. Especially since I have put a good bit of highway-higher speeds (75-80 mph) on it AND toed my boats back & forth to Maine from SC most every summer since I bought it. THANK YOU, EVERYONE!
AGENT86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 02:47 PM
  #13    
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: winter garden fl / Tiger Ga
Posts: 1,601
Default

early v-10's would blow the plugs with the threads from the head attached, they make a tool to fix this also. 04-08 5.4's were the problem years with the spark plugs , champion makes a one piece plug but I do not like champion plugs , I would use motorcraft, spray with blaster and let it soak as was suggested and warm the motor a little before removing, I do alot of plugs and have very little trouble if you follow the advice you have been given here. let us know how you make out.
oceandansar is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 04:47 PM
  #14    
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: A store where the people meet
Posts: 4,147
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by oceandansar View Post
early v-10's would blow the plugs with the threads from the head attached, they make a tool to fix this also. 04-08 5.4's were the problem years with the spark plugs , champion makes a one piece plug but I do not like champion plugs , I would use motorcraft, spray with blaster and let it soak as was suggested and warm the motor a little before removing, I do alot of plugs and have very little trouble if you follow the advice you have been given here. let us know how you make out.
10-4 & I will report once job is complete. Thanks!!
AGENT86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 05:30 PM
  #15    
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: merritt isl fl
Posts: 557
Default

I had the same issue 1999 f-150 I got the platinum plugs and coils from Jegs their house brand coils sell for $19.99 I did all eight.
__________________
Engineers can draw a perfect Ass hole. But its the guy working in the field that has to make it shit.
carribbean soul is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 10:25 PM
  #16    
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: A store where the people meet
Posts: 4,147
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by carribbean soul View Post
I had the same issue 1999 f-150 I got the platinum plugs and coils from Jegs their house brand coils sell for $19.99 I did all eight.

How long/how many miles since you installed them? Any noticeable difference in performance, fuel mileage, etc? I have been looking at coils online. They range from what you paid all the way up to $83.00 EACH, for Motorcraft coils. Looking for the Bosch coils, as recommended above.
AGENT86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2011, 11:19 PM
  #17    
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: merritt isl fl
Posts: 557
Default

no I didn't notice any change in performance other than the engine running as it should, however I didn't track it either.
__________________
Engineers can draw a perfect Ass hole. But its the guy working in the field that has to make it shit.
carribbean soul is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2011, 04:38 AM
  #18    
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: JAX FL
Posts: 1,483
Default

'98- mid 03 blew plugs out of head. Mid 03-08 2 piece plugs which broke off when removed. You have the plug break issue on yours not the blow out the head issue.
__________________
2000 McKee 1800 Pulse/ 2014 Mercury 150
1998 Shamrock 220
SHAMROCK69 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2011, 06:00 AM
  #19    
Admirals Club
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Posts: 1,378
Default

If you intend to replace the plugs DO not use the Bosch. Use the Motorcraft or Champion 1-piece. Right before replacing the plugs loosen all the coil hold down bolts and drive like you stole it to build up heat and "soften" the carbon. Work from the back to the front. I usually do one side first then run it again before doing the other side.
hybrid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2011, 06:04 AM
  #20    
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: TORONTO,CANADA
Posts: 423
Default

Get a MOTORVAC fuel injection service done before changing your plugs,this will help to remove any carbon build up on the threads of the plugs.I got this tip from a friend who is a ford tech,also use o.e replacement parts.Good luck.
fishlessam is offline   Reply With Quote
 
 
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 



©2009 TheHullTruth.com

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.2.0