Are you planning on purchasing a 6.0 PowerStroke and you are looking for the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid? If that is the case, then you are at the right place because there will be a lot to cover on this topic where we are going to learn everything when it comes to this engine.
- How Diesel Works?
- Pros & Cons
- 6.0 Specs
- 6.0 Problems
- Years To Avoid
- Bulletproof It?
Doing the proper research before you decide to spend a ton of money on a car or a truck like in our case is the key. You just don’t want to get yourself something problematic that will cost you an arm and a leg to maintain and fix in the long run.
You want a reliable beater truck that will get things done. And get things done on the cheap. Nobody wants to pay thousands of dollars for repairs. If you are asking me, that is a nightmare and not a proper ownership experience. Luckily for you, we are here to help you out when it comes to this truck engine and give you a few tips and what to look for when purchasing a truck like this.
First, we are going to learn what is PowerStroke, then we are going to cover how diesel engines work and the pros and cons of owning a diesel engine. After that, we are going to move on to the 6.0 engine. We will cover the specs, problems, and also the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid. So, if you want to learn more, follow along.
What Is PowerStroke
Now before we dive into the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid, let’s first cover some of the basics and learn what is PowerStroke in general. Knowing this will be really useful for you when it comes to choosing the engine that you want. So, let’s get into it.
As you probably heard, there are a few names that are often mentioned when you are discussing pickup diesel engines. Namely, Cummins, Duramax, and PowerStroke. What do these names mean?
Well, these names are actually referring to the producers of diesel engines. For example, Cummins is one of the oldest diesel makers of engines in the US and they have a high reputation when it comes to making diesel engines. Their engines are used in a variety of applications. For example, on RAM trucks.
On the other hand, some truck makers like GM and Ford do not want to outsource their engines as RAM does. So, they created their own divisions for engine manufacturing and they are basically branding these engines as they like.
For example, GM has Duramax. All their diesel engines used on the trucks and full-size SUVs are branded as Duramax. On the other hand, the diesel engines that Ford is producing are branded as PowerStroke.
So, we can sum things up and conclude that PowerStroke is Ford’s division for making diesel engines. They make a variety of engines used in Ford trucks. Including the 6.0 PowerStroke that we are covering in this article.
The engines in the PowerStroke lineup start small at only 3.0L in displacement and end up at 7.3L in displacement. So, we can say that there is a huge variety of options to choose from. But what are the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid? More on that in a bit.
How Diesel Engines Work
Now before we dive into the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid, let’s discuss another topic. And that is how diesel engines work? How do these engines work in general?
Knowing how these engines work will help you out understand their problems since their method of work is not quite the same as gas-powered engines. So, let’s cover the operation process pretty briefly.
Diesel fuel if you didn’t know is not flammable as gasoline. When the gas reaches the atmosphere it starts to evaporate and ignites pretty easily.
Diesel fuel is far more energy dense than gasoline and it doesn’t ignite easily as gas. It burns really slowly when ignited. This means that a lot more performance can be achieved with far less fuel. This is why diesel is widely used in heavy-duty equipment. But how diesel fuel is ignited?
Unlike gas which is ignited by a spark plug, diesel cannot be ignited in the same manner. When it comes to diesel engines this operation is completely different.
Diesel engines ignite the fuel with the help of compression. Yes, that’s right. Compression ignites the diesel fuel.
So, the fuel gets injected by a high compression injector and then compressed to the point where it heats up so much that it starts to burn. And then the explosion occurs and this moves the pistons up and down. And this is why diesel engines produce that tapping noise when they work.
These engines deliver a lot of power in the low RPM range and are often working on fewer RPMs than gas-powered engines. If a standard gas-powered engine is revving up to 7,000 RPM, a diesel engine revs up to 5,000 RPM. But what about 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid? More in a bit.
Pros And Cons Of Diesel Engines
Now let’s cover another topic before we dive into the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid. And that are the pros and cons of having a diesel engine.
As we all know, everything has its positives and negatives. And so is the case with owning a diesel engine. And known the cons is somewhat crucial when it comes to whether this type of engine will be suitable for you as your future daily driver.
So, if you want to learn more, follow along while we cover the pros and cons. Then we will jump to the 6.0 specs and the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid. So, let’s get started.
Now before we start covering the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid, let’s take a look at the pros of having a diesel engine as your daily driver or as a work truck.
The biggest pro of diesel engines that hardly any type of design will ever match is towing. Diesel vehicles can tow a lot because diesel fuel is very energy dense and produces a ton of power. Especially in the low end of the RPM range.
And having that low-end torque is crucial when it comes to towing, hauling stuff, and everything that is connected with the usage of these trucks in general. So, if you plan to use this truck for work, then this should be a no-brainer decision on your side. There is no replacement for diesel power.
The next pro is probably reliability. Diesel engines are built to be tough and really reliable. So, they could easily last for 300,000+ miles. But is this the case with the 6.0 PowerStroke? Well, more on that, we are going to find out later on in the article.
The next pro of having a diesel is probably the fuel efficiency. These diesel engines are crazy fuel efficient and spend very little fuel in comparison to gas-powered engines. This is another benefit of having that energy-dense diesel fuel.
This will quickly result in lower gas bills and you will drive more miles for less money. On average a diesel truck is running between 20 and 25 mpg. Which for a truck is absolutely crazy if you are asking me. A gas-powered engine will not give you more than 10 to 13 mpg. But what are the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid? More on that in a bit.
Now let’s cover more on the cons of having a diesel before we dive into the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid. So, what are the cons of having a vehicle like this?
Well, there are a few of them overall. So, they are still worth mentioning because some of them can be really big issues that can cost you thousands on repairs. So, let’s cover them.
The biggest con of having a diesel is probably the emissions devices installed on these vehicles. These emissions devices are very good for the environment but they are not good for the long-term maintenance costs of this truck.
These trucks, especially the newer ones come equipped with a DPF filter also known as a diesel particulate filter. And on top of that, they also run an EGR valve. Both of these components can clog up and cause problems with running the engine. Especially the EGR.
The EGR in most cases has to be replaced completely and the DPF needs to be cleaned regularly with high-pressure water.
Also, the injectors that these diesel engines are using tend to fail because of high miles or bad fuel. So, they need to be either repaired or replaced on the truck and this is also very costly.
And the last thing that we are going to mention is the turbine. Turbines also fail on these engines when the miles start to become high. Especially above 150,000 miles. The turbine has to be rebuilt at some point in order to avoid complete power loss. But what about the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid? More on that, we are going to cover in a moment.
6.0 PowerStroke Specs
Now before we start covering the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid, let’s take a look at the specs of this engine. So, if you want to learn all of the details when it comes to this specific engine, this is the right chapter for you. So, let’s begin covering them.
The 6.0 PowerStroke is a V8 turbocharged diesel with 6.0 liters in displacement as you probably assume. This is about 365 cubic inches. As they say, there is no replacement for displacement.
This engine has a bore of 3.74 inches and a stroke of 4.134 inches. The engine block is made out of cast iron. This is really essential since it is a diesel engine. It needs to be durable.
The cylinder heads are also cast iron running 4 valves per cylinder. So, in total there are 32 valves. Unlike some other engine makers that are using aluminum heads in their head design, Ford chose to install cast iron heads. This increases the weight of the engine. But that’s how things go. Luckily the intake manifold of this engine is aluminum and is light.
The compression of the engine is high at 18.0:1. This engine overall is producing about 325hp and 570lb-ft.
What is good is that this torque is readily available as low as 2,000 RPM. Making this engine to be perfect for towing heavy stuff.
And lastly, to add when it comes to the specs is that this engine has an oil capacity of 15 quarts including the filter. But what about the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid? More on that we are going to cover in a moment after we discuss all of the problems that this engine has.
6.0 PowerStroke Problems
Now before we discuss more about the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid, let’s take a look at the problems that this engine has.
And frankly, this engine is rather problematic. It has a number of issues that are present on it and these issues are really expensive to repair. This is why nowadays we don’t see 6.0 PowerStroke engines.
They were produced between 2003 and then discontinued in 2007 and replaced with new engines for the Super Duty lineup. Nevertheless, let’s dive into the problems of this engine and learn what is troubling it.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #1: Head Gasket Failure
The first problem that we are going to cover before we learn the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the problem with the head studs.
This engine is using TTY head studs that tend to fail and this is causing a ton of issues. Namely, blown head gaskets. This is why it is recommended to replace them with aftermarket ARP head studs to avoid issues like this.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #2: Fuel Injection Control Module Failure
The second problem that we are going to cover before we dive into the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the problem with the fuel injection module.
This is a computer module that regulates the injection of fuel and sometimes it can fail from overheating. If it fails, it is better to replace it with an aftermarket FICM alternative. Which can be rather expensive though, so beware of this problem.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #3: Oil Cooler Problems
The next problem that we are going to cover before we dive into the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the problem with the oil cooler.
This engine unlike other engines requires some extra cooling when it comes to the oil that is running through it.
This is why this model has an oil cooler with it. And what can happen is that this oil cooler can clog up if the oil is not changed frequently. And when this happens you will have an overheating engine.
This is a problem by design. Since the oil cooler installed on it has very small passageways that clog up pretty easily.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #4: EGR Cooler & EGR Valve Problems
The next problem that we are going to cover before we cover the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the issues with the EGR cooler and the EGR valve.
In addition to this, the EGR valve as with every diesel engine can clog up with carbon deposits and indicate a need for replacing it. Which can be rather expensive as well.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #5: High-Pressure Oil Pump Failure
Another very common problem that we are going to cover before we learn the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the issue with the high-pressure oil pump.
Yes, that’s right, this engine also uses a high-pressure oil pump. Unlike the standard wet sump engines. Wand what can happen is that this pump can fail completely and indicate a need for replacement. Another very expensive problem to get fixed.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #6: Injector Failures
The next problem that we are going to cover before we cover the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the issue with the injectors. The injectors on this engine are really sensitive when it comes to poor fuel quality.
So, you can expect to rebuild them and replace them and this is another really expensive repair if you are asking me. Imagine that there are 8 of these injectors and all of them cost a ton of money. This is why you better stay away from this engine.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #7: Turbine Failures
Another in our list of problems that we are going to cover before we dive into the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the issue with the turbine.
This engine uses a variable geometry turbo that suffers from soot buildup. And the turbocharger can cook the oil inside and cause a complete failure of the turbocharger. Luckily on the 2006, and 2007 models, there is an upgraded oil drain tube that removed this problem.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid, Problems #8: Plastic Degas Bottle Cracking
And the last common problem that we are going to cover before we learn the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid is the issue with the plastic degas bottle. This bottle tends to crack and cause leaks to develop. So, it is a good idea to replace it with a solid aluminum one.
6.0 PowerStroke Years To Avoid
Now let’s discuss the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid. Which years are the worst when it comes to this engine?
Well, we conducted thorough research on this topic and determined that the engines built between 2003 and 2005 are the most problematic.
If you want to get yourself a good and somewhat more reliable 6.0, it is advised to go for a 2006 or a 2007 model. This way you will be a bit safer when it comes to issues.
6.0 PowerStroke Bulletproof Kit
So, we covered the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid. Now let’s see more about the bulletproof kit. What is a bulletproof kit?
Well, this is a special kit intended for this engine. All the issues that we mentioned previously are sorted out. This kit includes a new oil pump, new oil cooler, new turbo oil line that doesn’t clog up, new ARP head studs, and a lot more.
Overall, in order to bulletproof your 6.0, you will have to spend between $2,000 and $5,000. So is it worth it? Well, it depends. If you like your truck, then getting this kit is a no-brainer decision if you are asking me.
In this article, we have covered a lot when it comes to the 6.0 engine. First, we learned what is PowerStroke and learned how diesel engines work and what are their pros and cons.
Then we focused on the 6.0 PowerStroke engine. First, we learned what is the 6.0 and its specs. We learned how much power this engine is making and all the interesting numbers surrounding it. Then we focused on the problems of this specific engine.
It is worth noting that there are a ton of weak spots in these engines. So, when it comes to the 6.0 PowerStroke years to avoid, it is worth staying away from the ones produced till 2005.
Now let’s answer some frequently asked questions.
What Diesel Engine Does Ford Use
Ford uses PowerStroke engines. All diesel engines used by Ford as branded as PowerStrokes. What is interesting is that before 2011 these engines were built by Navistar and in 2011 Ford purchased Navistar and now Ford is practically making its own engines.
How Much Oil Does A 6.0 PowerStroke Take
This engine takes 15 quarts of engine oil including the filter. Still, after the 14th quart, it is often advised to check the level and pour oil carefully in order not to overfill it.
How Many Miles Will A 6.0 PowerStroke Last
These engines if not bulletproofed do not last for a lot of time. About 200,000 to 300,000 miles on average. But there could be significant issues that will develop before this engine reaches this mileage.
Are 6.0 PowerStrokes Reliable
They are plagued with problems. Especially the models between 2003 and 2005. So, it is a better idea to stay away from one of these trucks. Or bulletproof one by upgrading the components.
What Does Bullet Proof Engine Mean
This means that all of the components prone to premature failures will be replaced with upgraded components that fail less often than the factory components.
Is A Bulletproof 6.0 Worth Buying
Well, if you don’t have another option and you have a limited budget then yes. It is worth upgrading your existing truck by bulletproofing it. If else, you can check some other truck models that are available out there.
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