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Old 01-31-2019, 01:34 PM   #1
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Just bought this 2002 7.:3 diesel e-350 4x4. New to the forum.

Hello all, first off, thank you for supplying so much great insight on this forum! Iím new to the site and already learned a lot.

I just bought this 2002 7.:3 diesel e-350 4x4. I donít have it in my possession yet but it is shipping to me tomorrow. I plan on adding lots of new things to the van but before I do that it does have some items that need to be addressed as detailed in my pre-purchase inspection. I am hoping to get some feedback on which of these I could save some money on and tackle myself. I realize there is a wide range of mechanic expertise and without knowing my level it is tough to advise. Iíll say that Iím not that great but Iím eager to learn and willing to put in the time on something that I have a low level of making worse if I mess up. I realize that is vague but am hoping it will be a good starting point. I have attached the report from the mechanic and also listed the repairs here.
-install air filter
-replace driver door hinge
-power steering fluid exchange
-battery service
-replace radiator hoses
-front and rear differential service due to dirty fluid
-transfer case fluid due to dirty fluid
-brake fluid exchange
-seatbelt light and airbag light
-horn (not working)
-cruise control (wonít set)
- parking break (doesnít hold probably due to glazing)
Transmission fluid exchange and Instalation of tie rods done by mechanic who performed inspection.

-drive shaft and u joints will most likely be done by Agile in San Diego.

I want to check out AC and venting issues once I have the vehicle to see what is needed.
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Old 01-31-2019, 04:27 PM   #2
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Easy DIY:
The maintenance items, like filters, oil changes, power steering fluid change, t-case fluid, rear end and front axle differential fluid change, etc, should be a walk in the park. Batttery terminals are easy to remove, clean w/toothbrush and baking soda solution, spray with battery terminal protectant from Auto Parts store. Wiper blades, most people change them in the parking lot of the auto parts store.

Intermediate:
Radiator and heater hoses: With a good understanding of hose replacement, youtube videos, patience, even a novice can tackle this job, itís just time consuming, the factory hose clamps can be a little tricky to remove if youíve never done it before. There are a ton of hot water hoses on a 7.3 van, if they are in fact the originals from 2002, Iíd change them. At least every hose from the radiator, coolant degas bottle. Might be a good time to change the degas bottle cap and thermostat, with high quality ones from Ford. From my experience, theyíre not easy to get at, and most are special order for the 7.3 van. Use gates or goodyear, Dayton isnít bad, stay away from the budget hoses as you wonít want to do that job very often.
Transmission fluid change. Brake fluid change is not difficult.
Tie rod assembly remove and replace. Pretty straightforward, purchase the entire tie rod. Yours looks to be a 4x4 conversion, so youíll need to know what truck the axle came out of, to buy the parts. Buy or borrow heavy work gloves, a 3lb sledge and tie rod separator Ďpickle forkí for Ford F350 4x4 truck before attempting.
Parking brake: Not an emergency, but the next time the rear brakes are being inspected, or getting a brake job, the p-brake should be looked at. Or do a rear brake job yourself, clean and inspect everything, find a youtube video on ford E or F 350 series (same basic parts)
Door hinge pins replacement is pretty easy on most trucks, but Iíve never done them on a Ford van.

More difficult:
Diagnosing airbag light and seat belt light.
Alignment: have a shop do it. Maybe even have them replace the tie rod and do the alignment at the same time. Have them inspect the ball joints at the same time.
A/C take it to a shop.
Diagnosing cruise control, shop.
Oil leaks on a 7.3 can be small and livable, or bigger, very time consuming (Iím in the middle of tracking down and fixing fuel and oil leaks on my 7.3 right now)
Axle u-joints. If your front axle is a Dana 60, the stub axle bearings are often loose feeling, it may not be the right and left axle ujoints at all. A shop that specializes in 4x4 work would be a good place to take it.
Driveshaft missing? HmmmmÖ thatís a big deal, the 4x4 canít work without it. Iíd check with the seller and ask about that. Hopefully you knew this before exchanging money, because thatís could be $1000 item to have parts sourced and made to custom length for your van.
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Old 01-31-2019, 05:14 PM   #3
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TomsBeast--wow man! Thanks so much for the thoughtful response. That is all very helpful. The drive shaft is definitely an issue that was discussed. He took it off to bring to a shop to source a new on or have it fixed. I think I'm going to have Agile in San Diego tackle that one. Thanks so much for the information!!!
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Old 01-31-2019, 05:34 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Surfvan View Post
TomsBeast--wow man! Thanks so much for the thoughtful response. That is all very helpful. The drive shaft is definitely an issue that was discussed. He took it off to bring to a shop to source a new on or have it fixed. I think I'm going to have Agile in San Diego tackle that one. Thanks so much for the information!!!

Anytime


It would be well worth your time and $$ to track down that old drive shaft from the previous owner, even if Agile has to send it off to be rebuilt
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Old 01-31-2019, 05:35 PM   #5
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So, where did the drive shaft go from there? And why did it break? Don't assume it's a simple fix. It will be upwards of $1k to replace that alone and it could've been removed for another reason, like to mask a front axle issue. I would NOT have a new one made before I saw the old one. You might be throwing that money away.
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Old 01-31-2019, 05:57 PM   #6
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I have the drive shaft (or will have it, when the vehicle arrives). At that point I'll bring it to a shop. I was figuring $550-$1,000.
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Old 01-31-2019, 06:42 PM   #7
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Welcome to the forum and SMB life!!!

Our airbag light was on b/c my lovely passenger (yes wife/KTG) forgot we only swivel towards drivers side and back same way... she went the other way and tore wires, which put the airbag light on...had it replaced and now they put a male/female piece in so if it happens again it will just release....about all the other stuffs...man its members like Scotty, DaveB, ArcticT, WOnderBoy etc... that will get you answers and put your mind at ease...and a good laugh once on awhile too...Good luck on your upcoming adventures and DON'T FORGET TO POST PICS!!!!!
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Old 01-31-2019, 09:21 PM   #8
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Thanks for the heads up and welcome message CTB. Pics to come in the near future.
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:39 PM   #9
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some updated pics

Just got back into town from vacation to be welcomed home by this bad boy in my driveway. I had it shipped to me while I was gone.

I finished gutting it this morning and have it all set for a transformer build out. Came with two sienna recliners. Hoping to meet up with some experienced SMB guys locally to look over it and make sure I do the initial interior foundation correctly.

Has some interior surface rust but nothing too bad.
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Old 02-10-2019, 01:44 PM   #10
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Nice! Glad to hear you have the drive shaft too. I'm curious to know what you find out about that.

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