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View Full Version : experienced ford 6.0 guys - looking at 2004 550 dump


alldayrj
10-12-2012, 11:21 AM
I want to buy a 550 dump truck. 2004 -97k miles - 11' fold down rugby dump - no smoke on start up(watched the mirror when cranking it up cold), but i took it around the block, got up to about 40mph, edge insight was reading approx 189 190 on eot and ect, everything was great til I got back to the yard and was talking to the owner while the truck was still running. there was a little white smoke coming out of the tailpipe when it was warmed up. The owner isn't knowledgeable on the 6.0s but suggested it was because the truck has been sitting for months.

Carfax and Oasis say that it had the tank, injectors, and pump done at 40k miles due to the lining of the chassis cab trucks coming loose and clogging everything. warranty ended at 50 k so from then til 97k there is nothing listed but safe to say not much else was done. all fluids and filters recently done.

I spoke to 1 diesel mechanic and he said it could be dirty EGR, cracked EGR, or head gaskets. the first two I will buy the truck in a heartbeat ($14k) and do an egr delete and coolant filter but if its heads I dont want to get involved unless its free or damn close to it.

another mechanic said to look for bubbles in the degas bottle while running.

the truck pulls hard, sounds great, and isn't throwing any codes.
unfortunately I can't get on the highway and wind it out to really read the ect eot since it isn't registered or insured, maybe if I show up with the cash he will let me?

just need a starting point to determine if its the heads or the egr. maybe I'm thinking too far into it but I know the 6.0s can be great trucks if they don't blow up and bankrupt you:hammerhead:

a pic for motivation

http://i274.photobucket.com/albums/jj242/silversuper/67FB4F97-D82A-4EAB-8AE3-92B311F2E2CF-4944-000004DDCCF78C13.jpg

BrandonV
10-12-2012, 12:34 PM
Wouldn't touch it with a 10' pole...
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Mark Oomkes
10-12-2012, 12:47 PM
Was it fully warmed up?

Who knows.

Mine smokes white, black, gray and blue when cold. Bad injectors, again. Going to try to hold off until I can do the Cummins swap that I keep putting off because of time and money. But I can't afford to wait much longer.

Flip a coin.

alldayrj
10-12-2012, 01:28 PM
My pickup smokes when its cold because it needs the ficm soldered but this dump started right up cold. No smoke. It was at 190*. Just trying to determine if a little white smoke when warm is a. Nothing but from sitting a while. B. egr related. C. Head gasket related. D. All the above
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dieseltech
10-12-2012, 01:30 PM
189-190 eot and ect is fully warmed up. Look at the degas bottle, was there much or any residue? If there wasnt i would say the heads are more than likely fine. Could be an injector but could very well be a dirty egr valve or ficm. Ficm's sent in to be rebuilt will cost in the neck of 300 and they offer a swap out for 50 more if you need it now. I would see if i could scan it for any potential problems like egr valve and ficm. Ficm should be 48.5- 46 at the very minnimum voltage but still not a huge cost to fix. I dunno bud
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DQL10
10-12-2012, 05:27 PM
Like others have stated could be a dirty egr which isnt that hard to clean if you know what you're doing. Since nobody has said this I will, if the truck hasnt been started in months, if you buy it, I would really clean out that turbo. chances are that the turbo veins could be stuck causing it to smoke a little bit more than usual. But I do know that if a turbo powered truck sits for long periods of time, the turbo tends to stick and wont function to its potential. But a headgasket, stud, and cooler job if done yourself should be like 2-3k bucks. I think....

alldayrj
10-12-2012, 05:49 PM
If i buy it i will delete the egr anyway. I just don't want to touch te heads.


My edge insight said 0 codes dieseltech. No residue. All fluids are new including coolant. I would probably do the restore flushes and ELC coolant with a coolant filter if i buy the truck
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bobcat_ron
10-13-2012, 08:47 AM
2004 was a bad production year, the 2005's were better. Mine was an '05 and it was flawless. They just don't like sitting for long periods of time of the turbo vanes get sticky. They need a good heavy foot every now and then.
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alldayrj
10-13-2012, 01:44 PM
The 2005s seem to be a big price jump also due to the freshened front body style. The 04 had some good improvements over the 03 like moving the icp sensor and some turbo changes i think. But my 03 has been flawless for 140k miles
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bobcat_ron
10-13-2012, 01:48 PM
Big thing to remember is to let any diesel engine warm up before hitting the skinny pedal, there's lots of different types of metals that expand with heat at different rates. I still see people with newer diesel trucks take off right out of the parking lot early in the morning with copious amounts of smoke exiting the pipe that the emissions systems can't handle with out heat.
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alldayrj
10-13-2012, 03:47 PM
But ask them and they'll tell you more smoke=more power!!!!
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DQL10
10-14-2012, 11:59 AM
More smoke means more unburnt fuel which means a less efficent engine.

PerfectEarth
10-14-2012, 01:24 PM
I have one.

Would NEVER buy another. Every day driving it I'm nervous. not even 60,000 miles yet

Spent a lot of money on various repairs (idlers, belts shredding, erg, oil cooler, back brake locks up sometimes, ac, water pump, fuse issues.... etc etc)

Gonna ride out the newer erg/oil repairs and then hopefully do a bulletproof on it next year.

joef450snowplow
10-14-2012, 11:01 PM
I want to buy a 550 dump truck. 2004 -97k miles - 11' fold down rugby dump - no smoke on start up(watched the mirror when cranking it up cold), but i took it around the block, got up to about 40mph, edge insight was reading approx 189 190 on eot and ect, everything was great til I got back to the yard and was talking to the owner while the truck was still running. there was a little white smoke coming out of the tailpipe when it was warmed up. The owner isn't knowledgeable on the 6.0s but suggested it was because the truck has been sitting for months.

Carfax and Oasis say that it had the tank, injectors, and pump done at 40k miles due to the lining of the chassis cab trucks coming loose and clogging everything. warranty ended at 50 k so from then til 97k there is nothing listed but safe to say not much else was done. all fluids and filters recently done.

I spoke to 1 diesel mechanic and he said it could be dirty EGR, cracked EGR, or head gaskets. the first two I will buy the truck in a heartbeat ($14k) and do an egr delete and coolant filter but if its heads I dont want to get involved unless its free or damn close to it.

another mechanic said to look for bubbles in the degas bottle while running.

the truck pulls hard, sounds great, and isn't throwing any codes.
unfortunately I can't get on the highway and wind it out to really read the ect eot since it isn't registered or insured, maybe if I show up with the cash he will let me?

just need a starting point to determine if its the heads or the egr. maybe I'm thinking too far into it but I know the 6.0s can be great trucks if they don't blow up and bankrupt you:hammerhead:

a pic for motivation

http://i274.photobucket.com/albums/jj242/silversuper/67FB4F97-D82A-4EAB-8AE3-92B311F2E2CF-4944-000004DDCCF78C13.jpg

Do the pressure test get it nice and hot then slowly and I mean slowly open the cap for the coolent tank and if it feels like it wants to shoot off most likely you need to do heads and gaskets if not and buy the. Truck if you want it to last you have to keep it cool so an oil cooler and all that other **** should be done and once you bullet proof it you got a strong fast motor there and you could even hip and get even more power out of it

DQL10
10-15-2012, 08:48 AM
Usually those coolant caps are the cause of the head gasket failure. Think about it, they use that same coolant cap for a diesel engine on the smallest engine ford makes. It never held enough pressure from the get go. Best thing to do about that is go to your local auto parts store and get a new cap. Also that extra smoke you were talking to in your first post could be caused by a sticky injector. Try putting some diesel kleen or 2 cycle oil in the tank when filling up. Please note, I am by no means a mechanic. Just going off of what I read in the past when searching for a 6.0 and what others around me use for their 6.0's.

Daner
10-15-2012, 05:26 PM
Did you end up buying the truck?

alldayrj
10-15-2012, 05:36 PM
No i got some advice on powerstroke.org that they make test strips to test for combustion gas in the coolant res so I've been tryin to locate those and then go back and take it for a longer drive and test it out.
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jrs.landscaping
10-17-2012, 12:45 PM
I'd have to say sticky injector from sitting. The FICM isn't an expensive fix but it does suck when you go to leave the shop in the morning and the truck just turns. My 6.0 has had over 9k put into it since I bought it. It has been running well since they replaced the FICM, oil pump, and six injectors this past spring.

Justin
10-29-2012, 01:46 AM
I have one and work on them from time to time. Like some have said letting a vgt turbo sit for that long is bad. The smoke could be a number of things. I wouldn't worry to awful much about it unless its a constant smoke. Biggest thing is do a egr delete and get rid of that egr cooler!! Just do your maintance on it and you will be fine. Alot of people complain about doing 2-3K for egr delete and headstuds on a 6.0, but you can say the same for injectors in a duramax(or tranny for that matter) or a tranny in a dodge.

alldayrj
10-29-2012, 02:09 AM
leaning more towards a international low pro. more GVW and a real truck frame. plus they seem to have less skeletons in the closet and are priced more reasonably
http://newjersey.craigslist.org/cto/3360156372.html

tbambersvc
10-29-2012, 08:37 PM
Thats real nice. Better off with that than the 550.

alldayrj
11-01-2012, 12:29 AM
Thanks man, thats what I hope. looking for some more opinions on them though. most guys seem to swear by them, and other complain about the 444(7.3) and auto but i'm not sure if they just want it to be something its not. I just want it to be the 550 KILLER lol

White Gardens
11-01-2012, 12:43 AM
Thanks man, thats what I hope. looking for some more opinions on them though. most guys seem to swear by them, and other complain about the 444(7.3) and auto but i'm not sure if they just want it to be something its not. I just want it to be the 550 KILLER lol

Only thing you need to consider with a 550 or the low-pro is that if you pull a trailer, it needs to be small as you'll be over CDL with the combined weight.

For instance.

My C3500HD is a 16k truck and I can pull my 10k equipment trailer with it and be right under CDL.

.....

alldayrj
11-01-2012, 01:12 AM
yea I get that, I will probably get my CDL this winter while its slow anyway. my current dump is 25500 and I've towed with it, just dont tell anyone ;)

lets not turn this into a CDL thread though, I swear some people search it every time they log on just to stir it up again haha

If anyone has experience with the low - pros please post up, pics included

White Gardens
11-01-2012, 10:02 AM
lets not turn this into a CDL thread though, I swear some people search it every time they log on just to stir it up again haha


Just bringing it to your attention, that's all.


......

alldayrj
11-01-2012, 10:38 AM
Just bringing it to your attention, that's all.


......
I apreciate it, it wasnt a jab at you
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B&M
11-02-2012, 02:29 AM
Wouldn't touch it with a 10' pole...
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I have to agree and I'm a ford guy through and through. To the op It's a nice looking truck, but white smoke is not good as some others have said it could be head gaskets, egr or both.

Monroe74
11-10-2012, 06:31 PM
Do a compression test on the heads that will answer your question. White smoke is never good when the engine is warm. Because it was sitting is complete bs.

cutbetterthanyou
11-19-2012, 01:52 PM
I've always been told white smoke= water, black=fuel, blue=oil. That being said i wouldn't buy it myself. 6.0s have a bad track record and white smoke isn't good in my book. I would have to lean toward the head gaskets due to the white smoke. All the other problems listed should be black smoke.