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Old 08-20-2009, 07:53 PM   #1
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Another turbo...

The check engine light in my van came on early last week. I took it to Diehl Ford in town. The turbo was over boosting. This is the third time it has done this. They replaced the turbo. Third one in 40,000 miles.

I was headed out of town tonight for a four day weekend in BC. I made it 15 minutes up the freeway before a vibration in the drive train got so bad I had to pull over and look under the van. It is covered in oil. I am guessing the vibration is a U joint, but clearly Ford created an oil leak when they changed the turbo. And if a U joint is bad, will Ford fix it under warranty? Not likely since SMB modified the drive shaft. Guess I'll dig out the SMB warranty next...

I'm too tired to even be mad right now. I am just disgusted with the whole Ford diesel and all it's issues, and the lack of decent repairs for those issues from Ford...

Brian Rutherford
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Old 08-21-2009, 12:58 PM   #2
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Re: Another turbo...

That is a major bummer Railbat.

Nobody likes recurring problems that don't get fixed properly. Maybe its time to change dealers (find one with decent diesel mechanics as many Ford places don't have diesel-certified ones). I'd also insist they install a brand new turbo (not rebuilt or re-manufactured) next time.

The turbo is a variable vane unit and the blades are prone to rusting, especially if the vehicle isn't driven regularly. Info on various webpages advocate regular spirited driving (i.e., lead foot) to periodically work the turbo hard and "blow things out". Does your rig sit much?

My guess is the u-joint isn't a warranty item. One minor positive is the vibration caused you to pull over and inspect before all the engine oil got sprayed on the roadway and underside of your van which would have likely resulted in a much bigger, major problem. The oil line to the turbo would be my first guess to check for a leak.
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Old 08-21-2009, 01:14 PM   #3
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Re: Another turbo...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Switchfoot
.... Maybe its time to change dealers ....
I completely agree.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Switchfoot
The oil line to the turbo would be my first guess to check for a leak.
Which, if it is the case, should be cause for the dealer (preferably another dealer) to install another turbo, at least if it was the intake oil line. You have no way of knowing how long the bearings in the turbo were not being supplied with oil which would drastically shorten the life of the turbo.

A few other thoughts:
- If you're running AMSOIL, make sure they replace the lost oil with AMSOIL
- Make them pay for a steam cleaning of the engine, engine bay, front axle,...
- Check the oil level, so you have some idea how much oil you may have lost. Might help if you have any engine problems down the line.

Good luck and keep them as honest as possible. Make them document everything, and document enything yourself.


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Old 08-29-2009, 02:57 PM   #4
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Re: Another turbo...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Switchfoot
I'd also insist they install a brand new turbo (not rebuilt or re-manufactured) next time.
A nice idea but I doubt then can comply. I've had 2 reman units put on mine now with the last one rebuilt with a new unison ring and decoked last time rather than being replaced. I've started using fuel additives hoping that I can go longer between Check Engine Lights. That remains to be proved.

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Old 08-29-2009, 07:00 PM   #5
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Re: Another turbo...

I have had a similar problem. I attribute it to the fact that the SMB sat for nearly 5 months before I bought it. It had "lot rot" on the VGT vanes. My dealership relplaced all the internals on the turbo under warranty. These trucks do not do well sitting for any length of time.
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Old 08-30-2009, 03:39 PM   #6
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Re: Another turbo...

Soooo, here I sit on Sunday morning. I have Sundays and Mondays off, and planned to head east of the Cascades this morning. Last week I had to cancel a trip in my Sportsmobile because of a large oil leak and a drivetrain vibration, both of which I found as I was leaving town for four days. Ford fixed the oil leak under warranty (it was an O ring on a cam sensor that was leaking. Nothing like having a 10 cent part kill your trip...). Ford had installed a new turbo a week or two before that, (turbo number three in 40,000 miles on this van) and I suspect the O ring damage was caused during the turbo repair. Ford also told me they found the front hubs were locked, and they unlocked them and the vibration was gone. I glance at the hubs from time to time to make sure no joker has locked them on me. Somebody had at some point recently, I guess. I know I haven't used the front axle in months, and I know it was unlocked last time I looked. I have driven the van on the freeway with the hubs locked in the past and had no vibration, so should have known better than to believe Ford when they said that unlocking the hubs had fixed the vibration.

I had a busy week this week and didn't drive the van on the freeway. This morning after packing up I hit the freeway and right away knew the vibration was still there.

First thing I'll do on Monday is have the tires rebalanced. After that, it's off to the drivetrain shop here in town to have them look over the driveshafts and U joints.

I'm trying to remind myself that the van is just a machine and things will go wrong from time to time... But I am really sick of the trouble this van has had in it's 40,000 mile life.

You ever feel like laying on the floor, kicking and screaming like a little kid? Might make me feel better right now...

Brian
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Old 08-30-2009, 09:48 PM   #7
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Re: Another turbo...

railbat - better to get the "bad luck" out of the way now while you still in town instead of way off road somewhere. Once this stuff gets fixed you'll be ready to rock and roll your smb. It's total bullshit that the ford mechanics don't troubleshoot and fix like their "master mechanic" certification syas thye should. Go right to the shop foreman and the service manager and talk to them about it and if they don't take care of you find a different place.
Hang in there.
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Old 08-30-2009, 10:44 PM   #8
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Re: Another turbo...

I've read on here that they only get paid by Ford once for each warranty fix- which means after the first the dealership is eating it because the mechanics aren't bothering to diagnose the real cause.. something that might not be getting relayed to the guy responsible for the bottom line. If that dealership were the only choice, my goal would probably be to find that guy and mention your confusion about why they would want to continue to eat the cost instead of fixing it right this time...

Myself, I didn't go through actual turbos, but I left the van for several non-consecutive weeks at the same dealership (Tucson) for the recurring check engine light before getting a manager (in Indiana no less) to actually replace the turbo under warranty.
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