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Old 03-03-2013, 11:35 PM   #1
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Check?1999 E350 EB 160000 miles 5.4 engine Closed request

Not knowing these vans that well, what do you suggest that I look in depth to make sure it it in order as much as it can...
And how to test drive to feel the problems?

Thank you for your input.

Andrew
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Old 03-04-2013, 08:38 AM   #2
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Re: What to check on a 1999 E350 EB 160000 miles 5.4 engine

Hopefully CarringB will chime in, he's quite a good resource on this stuff. I would say get a feel for the steering/suspension. There are several things which could need attention under the front end. As far as the drivetrain, if it shifts OK the tranny is probably fine. Early 5.4s (they came out in 97) had spark plug issues. Ask if they've ever been changed. They blow out on the early 5.4s, and they also seize requiring very difficult removal and repair, made even more difficult in a van. If basic maintenance has been done, I wouldn't be worried about 160k. Also, don't let the spark plug thing scare you, but it was a problem for some, well documented on many internet forums, so don't neglect it either.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:20 AM   #3
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Re: What to check on a 1999 E350 EB 160000 miles 5.4 engine

+1 on checking the front end, especially the ball joints. E-vans are known for going through them. Ask if they've ever been replaced. If not, assume that you will have to do that sooner rather than later.

Check to see if the rear springs are sagging. You may need to get them re-arched or add an extra leaf or two.

I own a 1998 E250 EB, by the way...
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Old 03-04-2013, 07:29 PM   #4
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Re: What to check on a 1999 E350 EB 160000 miles 5.4 engine

I think Scotty covered the essentials. Instead of worrying about front-end condition, I would recommend just budgeting for full axle swap from a new van, since that will take care of any worn wear-parts, and give you much better brakes. That's what I did to my van using a take-off from QuadVan. My dad did the same to his van, except he just took it to QuadVan and had them do the work.

The spark plug issues really isn't that big of a problem. But a '99 will have the weaker threads, so it does require extra care during tune-ups.
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Old 03-04-2013, 08:28 PM   #5
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Re: What to check on a 1999 E350 EB 160000 miles 5.4 engine

Thank you all for the answers.
Seen it now, will think about it.
Not sur to go ahead...
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:25 PM   #6
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Re: What to check on a 1999 E350 EB 160000 miles 5.4 engine

Other than the plug issue, there isn't that much that goes wrong with these vans that's particular to them. The radiators don't last forever (but are cheap enough), and other stuff may have been abused, so I'd take a look at all the fluids. I'd be suspect of any fluids that are obviously new, but not overly so, some folks will in fact simply change them to get the vehicle freshly serviced and ready for sale.

There's lots of information out there on general pre-purchase-inspection, do a search and you should find plenty.

160k miles is far from the end of the life for an e-series, but any number of things may be due. If they are, look up what they take to sort, and negotiate the price based on that. -- In both buying and selling cars I've ended up knocking off about 75% of worst case costs and have so far come out under that to actually take care of whatever needed sorting.
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Old 03-06-2013, 12:38 PM   #7
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Check ? 1999 E350 EB 160000 miles 5.4 engine. Closed case

Thank you for the feedbacks.

Not going to go further, basic home build with old RB pop top.
More then I want to invest.
Over for me, closed inquiry.
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