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Old 08-30-2015, 12:10 PM   #1
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Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

Hello,

I'm new to this, but wanted to ask some people more familiar before committing to a particular vehicle. I'm looking at 2005 Diesel Econoline E350 with about 275K miles on it, and I want to make sure that isn't high enough that I'll start running into problems. The asking price is below $4k, but I'm not really sure if I should try to ask for lower given the miles.

For now I won't be driving that much, but I'd still want the option to do short road trips (<2000 mi round trip).

Thanks!
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Old 08-30-2015, 12:42 PM   #2
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

You couldn't pay me to take a 6.0 PowerStroke with that many miles, unless its already had a full engine and wire harness replacement. $4k could be a decent deal if you are willing and able to do major work yourself (i.e. you have a body lift, or an engine picker and LOTS of patience) but otherwise you'll save yourself a lot of headache if you find yourself a gasser. A V10 with 300,000 miles will still have many years of good service in it.
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Old 08-30-2015, 02:32 PM   #3
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

Maybe do a bit of research on this and other forums. IMHO if you want to "try out van life" on the cheap and want to minimize risk of "running into problems", get a gasser.
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Old 08-30-2015, 03:14 PM   #4
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

I'll see if I can find any gassers, but since I'm trying to buy within the county I'm in, options are a bit limited. What would be a more reasonable price I could negotiate down to? I was under the impression diesel is more durable...

If between miles 225k and 275k there weren't any major issues, what sort of problems would be likely to come up? Is this model in particular known for having problems? If so, how much might it cost to then fix?

As of now, I'm planning on having the van for at least a year
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Old 08-30-2015, 03:57 PM   #5
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

Short answer: Many many items can go wrong and most seem to cost $1500-$3500 on their own. If items are not fixed, this initiates a cascading chain of failures which can result in total engine failure, costing $20,000+ to fix everything.

Even doing a full, complete "bulletproofing" job, including better turbo, fuel delivery, cooling, and electrical upgrades can cost over $12,000.

If you are prepared to walk away from the van in even of a breakdown, go for it. If you want to have it repaired, you can buy a running gas van for less.
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Old 08-30-2015, 06:28 PM   #6
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

Quote:
Originally Posted by ronaldino
I was under the impression diesel is more durable...
They are, but not the For 6.0! It's notorious for trouble. I wouldn't steer you away from any diesel except that one. Also, that is high miles unless a lot of expensive maintenance has been done. I would keep looking and be willing to travel a little further. Good luck and welcome!

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Old 08-30-2015, 07:22 PM   #7
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

Quote:
Originally Posted by 86Scotty
Quote:
Originally Posted by ronaldino
I was under the impression diesel is more durable...
They are, but not the For 6.0! It's notorious for trouble.
And, its corresponding gas engines (the Triton V8 and V10) are some of the most durable engines out there! Just not the most efficient
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Old 08-30-2015, 07:26 PM   #8
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

you gonna pull wrenches on all of 'em... especially at 200k+
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Old 08-30-2015, 09:03 PM   #9
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

Quote:
Originally Posted by ronaldino
I'm trying to buy within the county I'm in, options are a bit limited.
As of now, I'm planning on having the van for at least a year
Where do you live?

Probably one more reason to avoid that 2005 diesel.
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Old 08-30-2015, 09:58 PM   #10
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Re: Looking to get a 2005 E350 Diesel to try out van life

I'm glad I came here because I wouldn't have known about the engine. I'm looking at a couple other vans now.

One is a gas 1990 chevy with a rwd v6 with 120k miles, and that one already has a bed platform, which I want. The engine was recently rebuilt, it has new tires and stereo so I'm leaning towards that one unless someone here doesn't think it's a good option.

The other is a 92 econoline for $800 with the radiator and head gasket blown, not sure if that means it can't drive at all until fixed, or how much that would cost.
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