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TUNE Up F-150 Fair Price??

Old 11-06-2019, 10:38 AM
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Default TUNE Up F-150 Fair Price??



I have an 09 F-150 with 100k miles on it. The other day I started getting a bad misfire which was causing the truck to shutter really bad. Took it over to the mechanic and was explained that my coil on #3 shorted out and as a result shorted out my spark plug. He recommended doing them all to avoid having the same issue down the line with one of the others.



Is this a fair price? He clean all injectors, replaced all coils, new plugs. Parts + labor= $1,800.00.

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Old 11-06-2019, 11:07 AM
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I have the same truck (close in mileage) and a background as an OEM engine design engineer. My $.02:
.Change all the plugs
.Change out the failed coil
That is it, should be 2-3hrs labor max and $150 parts max. $300?

No need to preventatively change coils, they are easy to change if/when you have another one fail. With brand name fuel, there should be no injecto issues. Run a can of seafoeam or other cleaner in the fuel tank if that makes you feel proactive.
Good luck.
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Old 11-06-2019, 01:25 PM
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It’s a little late to be asking if that’s a fair price if you’ve already paid him, unless you want the knowledge going into the repair shop next go-around.
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Old 11-06-2019, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by crothers View Post
I have the same truck (close in mileage) and a background as an OEM engine design engineer. My $.02:
.Change all the plugs
.Change out the failed coil
That is it, should be 2-3hrs labor max and $150 parts max. $300?

No need to preventatively change coils, they are easy to change if/when you have another one fail. With brand name fuel, there should be no injecto issues. Run a can of seafoeam or other cleaner in the fuel tank if that makes you feel proactive.
Good luck.
Thanks for the info. He told me it was $960 in parts. His concern with not changing the coils was if another one shorted, it could potentially short out the computer causing more damage?

Originally Posted by RipTideBBQ View Post
It’s a little late to be asking if that’s a fair price if you’ve already paid him, unless you want the knowledge going into the repair shop next go-around.
Reason I'm asking, is to see if that is truly the going rate for what I got done
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Old 11-06-2019, 03:20 PM
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coils are less than $40 each spark plugs about $5 each. Assuming a V8 and your at a maximum of $360 for parts if you change all 8 coils.
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Old 11-06-2019, 03:24 PM
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Ask for a itemized parts list. ALWAYS.
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Old 11-06-2019, 03:44 PM
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Which engine? There was a horribly designed spark plug/cylinder head setup, which could up the labor.

The spark plug would break off in the head, needing additional labor and a special tool to remove the broken piece.

+1 on always getting an itemized invoice
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Old 11-06-2019, 03:47 PM
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Never heard of a coil shorting out a computer. That’s a new one on me and I was in the business over 40 years.
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Old 11-06-2019, 04:04 PM
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At 100 k the plugs should be changed, if it's a v8 triton? the plugs can be a bitch to change, the plugs were almost $100 when I did mine and the tool to remove the 6 that broke was another $100. I had 1 coil go causing a misfire and replaced that, 100k later never had another coil go bad, I don't believe a coil will cause anything other than a fouled plug. I heard reports that dealers were charging $1000 for a plug change.
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Old 11-06-2019, 04:07 PM
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This guy is trying to work you over. Your truck being an '09 does not have the spark plug issues of the earlier years. Fuel injector cleaning is a scam and there is no need to replace all the coils. There is no risk of a coil shorting out a computer.

From Rock Auto, Motorcraft plugs are $8.20 each and a coil is $53.79. This is not a very difficult job and anyone with even a little bit of mechanical knowledge could accomplish it. You can have an auto parts store read the code and it will tell you which cylinder is misfiring.
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Old 11-06-2019, 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by crothers View Post
I have the same truck (close in mileage) and a background as an OEM engine design engineer. My $.02:
.Change all the plugs
.Change out the failed coil
That is it, should be 2-3hrs labor max and $150 parts max. $300?

No need to preventatively change coils, they are easy to change if/when you have another one fail. With brand name fuel, there should be no injecto issues. Run a can of seafoeam or other cleaner in the fuel tank if that makes you feel proactive.
Good luck.

I agree totally with this. In all actuality, it's much more likely that a bad spark plug ruined the coil, not the other way around. It'd be nuts to replace all the coils... they are not considered "wear" parts...
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Old 11-06-2019, 04:57 PM
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His theory of coil failure damaging the ECU does not stand up to reason or experience. Perhaps he changed some/all injectors to get that $ total, but that would appear un-necessary with the info provided. Getting a receipt is a good idea to see what parts were actually purchased for the truck What is done is done, if indeed he changed out functioning coils, keep them as spares. FYI, the 2009 engines did not have any propensity for spark plug breakage during R&R some earlier models had. I stand by original post, anything additional work was not required. Sorry for your troubles.
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Old 11-06-2019, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Daimyo68 View Post
Which engine? There was a horribly designed spark plug/cylinder head setup, which could up the labor.

The spark plug would break off in the head, needing additional labor and a special tool to remove the broken piece.

+1 on always getting an itemized invoice
That problem was solved long before the 09 model year. They switched to one piece spark plugs.

You can get coil packs from $12 to $53 (Motorcraft) at RockAuto.com. Whoever quoted $1800 for coils and plugs was trying to hit a home run in the profit department. It's just not a difficult job to do a tune up on a Ford Modular V-8.
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:15 AM
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Thanks for all the feedback guys, really Appreciate all the responses. In hindsight I guess I should have checked in here with you guys sooner/before taking it in. I guess I knee jerked because the truck was running so bad, he went in and replaced the bad coil and plug and told me the above diagnosis and at that point and I took his word for it. One correction, I did my math wrong…it was a total of $1,450 for everything. Again, sounds high reading your responses. I do some things myself mechanically, but when he told me about spark plugs potentially breaking in the cylinders, I thought this project was out of my wheelhouse. Again should have investigated more. Thanks for the feedback AND FUTURE knowledge!!
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:24 AM
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Coils are as easy as it gets on these vehicles. They will cost you ~$400 for coils and it will take you all of 10 minutes per to make the change. They will not short out the computer. Like in the old cars with distributer caps. The coils tell the plug when to fire. If the coil is bad then the signal isn't getting to your plug, and the cylinder isn't firing. You can absolutely change out the bad one and likely never have to worry about the others. Or change them all. The mechanic is raping you because you don't know how the new trucks work.

I sat in a dealership getting recall work done, listened to a tech lie to an older customer about the risks of coils and then charge them 1000 for parts and 600 for labor. when the person sat next to me I told them if they wanted I could stop by their house later in the day and swap them out. Got parts and swapped them for >400. Took me less than and hour. They were excited because they were on a fixed income and couldn't afford the 1600 that was quoted from the dealer.
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:31 AM
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I can see where the mechanic is coming from as I have changed plugs in the past and moving the coil caused issues with it and I have had several fail shortly down the road after plugs. I don't think you got ripped off, I think the mechanic did his due diligence and sounds like he used Ford parts. At least you can sleep well knowing you won't have a coil issue in the near future.
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Tangled Online View Post
Thanks for all the feedback guys, really Appreciate all the responses. In hindsight I guess I should have checked in here with you guys sooner/before taking it in. I guess I knee jerked because the truck was running so bad, he went in and replaced the bad coil and plug and told me the above diagnosis and at that point and I took his word for it. One correction, I did my math wrong…it was a total of $1,450 for everything. Again, sounds high reading your responses. I do some things myself mechanically, but when he told me about spark plugs potentially breaking in the cylinders, I thought this project was out of my wheelhouse. Again should have investigated more. Thanks for the feedback AND FUTURE knowledge!!
Those coil packs are an irresistible carrot for shops to overcharge. I have a LONG time relationship with a very honest if somewhat cranky shop owner. I have a couple of old trucks that he has done a lot of work on over decades and most of the time I am surprised with how reasonable his rates are.

Even he will fukc a long time customer like me with a coil pack change. As others have stated it’s as simple as scanning the misfire, one wire connection and one 7mm bolt to remove a coil pack, they’re $40is a pop. Ten minute job, maybe a few more minutes on the cylinders up near/under the firewall. My guy will pop me $150+.

I think grossly overcharging to change out a Ford coil pack is irresistible for anyone who turns a wrench for a living.

What you paid sounds a bit high to me but remember one of the rules of THT states that whatever you paid was too much and someone from the peanut gallery got it for less, typically 1/2 of what you paid.

However, I bet if you asked to see a receipt the response would be crickets....
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Old 11-07-2019, 11:28 AM
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He isn't buying the parts himself. The shop makes money on parts. Thats how it works. $1800 is INSANE!

It pays 3 hrs labor to change the plugs. We are $99.95 an hour at my shop. There is also NO need to change all coils. Plugs can go for 9.99-15.99 depending on the type of plug. If they are the 2 piece plug the labor per cylinder can go up if they break off. We charge 1/2 hour for each one
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