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Old 10-19-2015, 05:54 PM   #11
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

Okay, so the person I quoted above doesn't have it right then? I wasn't sure what to think, because it sounded plausible, and you'd think the vehicle would be designed to be able to use (nearly) all the fuel without prematurely damaging anything. But, anyway, good to know the truth even if it's not what I would prefer.
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Old 10-20-2015, 05:07 AM   #12
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

Viva the only real advice or experience I can offer is before I was aware it was possible to shorten the fuel pump's life I too was one who'd squeeze every last bit out before filling. This was a consistent habit on every vehicle I'd owned before in-tank fuel pumps became so common, my knowledge of the higher pressure fuel injection systems pretty much non-existent. Because reliability is my utmost concern these days it now makes sense to re-fuel once I hit 1/4 tank, very exceedingly rarely does the needle see the lower side if the 1/4 tank fill line.

I can't claim without a doubt that filling at 1/4 tank definitely extends fuel pump life but apart from your concern with CC skimming ect there's no harm in following that convention either. If I shared those same concerns and traveling out of my local area as so many SMB owners do I'd maybe carry a bit of cash for incidentals like gas. When I'm in town using the debit card for such purchases in never a concern as I can almost hourly check my bank activity if wanted.

While I won't necessarily disagree with the author of the quoted passage I'd offer he's speaking from the perfect world scenario where residue inside the tank never collects around the fuel pick up, filters never clog etc etc. Perhaps his experience is 100% valid but time and time again when we hear of fuel pump issues it can be at least partially related back to frequent fuel usage below the 1/4 tank point.

Another point found in the linked info is reading through the thread you see others who openly disagree or challenge the OP's attempt at debunking this as a myth. Another FWIW I think........

I'll also offer MAYBE keeping at least 1/4 tank keeps inner tank debris somewhat suspended, in effect keeping it from concentrating around the fuel pick up sock and tube? If the inlet side is restricted inside the tank then I'm more in agreement pump failures due high heat/loss of cooling is perhaps a real and big concern. Pure conjecture and WAG on my part, take it for what its worth.

Not sure how to speak to design and it not being wise to run with >1/4 tank--- that's a great point. My guess is over the life of the E-Series accounting for millions of real-world miles some aspects can become known that weren't considered or a huge concern during the by comparison relatively short design and test period before something is released to the general public.

Mind you it's not a steadfast rule where one MUST re-fuel EVERYTIME before 1/4 tank---we're talking mostly the consistent practice over 100K miles or more. My two E250's with over 200K (275K & 212K) miles each are on their original pumps--take that FWIW too.

I change spark plugs @ 50K, oil @3-5K, keep at least 1/4 tank of fuel at all times---haven't used my tow truck driving buddies in years upon years.
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Old 10-20-2015, 12:06 PM   #13
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

JWA,

Thanks for fleshing out your perspective. It sounds like we don't know for sure, but we also do know that not going below 1/4 tank certainly can't hurt. I suppose I'll continue my habit of going below 1/4 tank some of the time, when it's convenient (I don't normally go to "last drop," but rather between 1/8 tank and empty sometimes), but perhaps lean a bit more toward filling up sooner when I can.

I already have started to carry cash for fueling in some places, but (call me lazy!), it's such a pain compared to using a card at the pump. Go in, wait in line behind people trying to decide which pull tabs to buy, give them a large amount of cash, go out, fill tank, go back in, wait in line AGAIN to get the extra cash back. Ugh!

Perhaps the chip and pin cards will make skimming a bit more difficult? One can hope.

Another thing is that often I'm towing, and that's (to me) one of the disadvantages to towing with gas: The need to squeeze in to the "car" pumps at many stations. That can be a real pain (plus so easy for folks to nick something since I'm often too big to really tuck in properly). So those are times I'd rather fuel as few times as possible (given that there are plenty of stations so I know I won't get caught out).

Quote:
Originally Posted by JWA
While I won't necessarily disagree with the author of the quoted passage I'd offer he's speaking from the perfect world scenario where residue inside the tank never collects around the fuel pick up, filters never clog etc etc. Perhaps his experience is 100% valid but time and time again when we hear of fuel pump issues it can be at least partially related back to frequent fuel usage below the 1/4 tank point.
Of course then we don't know how many people ran to nearly empty every time and *didn't* have a premature failure. But as you say, no way to really prove it, and so we can each make our own choices based on this sort of balanced presentation of info (thanks!).

I had an in-tank pre-pump on my last car, and didn't replace it until nearly 400k (and yes, I got gas as infrequently as possible). But that wasn't a Ford and too, it had an external main pump, so probably not even comparable anyway.

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I change spark plugs @ 50K, oil @3-5K, keep at least 1/4 tank of fuel at all times--
I'm totally with you on the maintenance. I had the plugs changed at 49k and always used to change oil at 3k (back when I ran non-synthetic in my previous rigs). I figure, as in boating, that it adds good karma to the "black box" when you take care of things well. But I still don't like to stop for gas Guess I'll just take my lumps if/when I have to replace the fuel pump (but that said, I don't run down to empty all the time now either - just annoys me to feel like I "should" fill up before 1/4 tank every time for some reason - just a quirk I'm sure).


Thanks again for taking the time to expand your thoughts on this a bit. Now I have a bit more to base my habits on. Nothing worse than doing some behavior based only on a myth (like modern batteries stored on concrete, etc.).

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Old 10-21-2015, 03:55 AM   #14
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Viva
Nothing worse than doing some behavior based only on a myth (like modern batteries stored on concrete, etc.).

Viva
To this very day I STILL refuse to set any battery directly on a concrete floor for any length of time. I know without doubt that practice DOES suck life out and there's no denying that!

Funny how myths from long ago--in my case nearly 50 years---persist huh?
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Old 10-21-2015, 12:09 PM   #15
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

In my case, the first pump failed at about 110K mi, the second one failed less than a year later and with fewer than 10K on it. In both cases, the fuel pick-up screen was clean as was the inside of the tank. The second pump may have been defective, but I will admit to having run the tank below 1/4 fairly often though. Between the tow bill, labor and the new pump I was out about $600, but fortunately Oreilly auto parts refunded the cost of the pump and some of the labor after several months. From now on I'll try to stay above 1/4 tank, but I'll be carrying a spare pump too. It may be overkill, but if the pump quits again I doubt it will be somewhere convienent.
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Old 10-21-2015, 12:49 PM   #16
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

Quote:
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but if the pump quits again I doubt it will be somewhere convienent.
If it quits in Baja next month I'm not helping! Well, I'll hand you a cold beer when you finish.. That's helping, right?
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Old 10-21-2015, 03:23 PM   #17
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

I am not sure about the 1/4 tank level. I never run my tank below 1/4 for the same reasons as others have stated. However my fuel pump decided to loose pump pressure at 79,000 km (49,000 mi) and cost me $900 CAD in December 2013 (Merry Christmas To Me ).
Cheers
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Old 10-21-2015, 05:28 PM   #18
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Re: 100k on 5.4 V8; maintenance?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rallypanam
If it quits in Baja next month I'm not helping! Well, I'll hand you a cold beer when you finish.. That's helping, right?
Now that I"ll have a spare, I doubt it will ever quit again, but can I get that beer anyway?
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