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I think it's a keeper - need advice

EasyRhino

Explorer Addict
Joined
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City, State
Kailua, Hawai'i
Year, Model & Trim Level
'02 Limited 4.6L 4x4
I posted a while back on inputs for making an X last. Am finalizing up my 250K+ miles maintenance plan, but have a few thoughts/questions:

(1) How oftern would you/do you replace O2 sensors, or do you wait until the check engine light comes on? Is there any value in changing them as a routine maintenance item?

(2) My 97 XLT 5.0L AWD with 4R70W tranny came from the factory with dino Mercon, not Mercon V, in it. Let's hear your advice on what to use long term in it. If you advise going w/ synth, what is required to perform a change-out?

(3) Anybody out there change their brake fluid and power sterring fluid as a matter of routine maintenance?

(4) I am adding a item to perform a coolant drain and refill annually (essentially just drain the radiator), vice a drain/flush/refill every few years. My thought is to keep the chemistry well in-spec on a continuing basis. Then at each 60K miles when I do hoses and t-stat, I'll do a flush.

Thanks in advance.

BTW, when I get this schedule finished, I'll post it for comments.
 



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Originally posted by EasyRhino
(1) How oftern would you/do you replace O2 sensors, or do you wait until the check engine light comes on? Is there any value in changing them as a routine maintenance item?
It is recommended every 60,000 miles. Most people can go 100,000 miles before they NEED to but its a good idea to do it before it needs it.

(2) My 97 XLT 5.0L AWD with 4R70W tranny came from the factory with dino Mercon, not Mercon V, in it. Let's hear your advice on what to use long term in it. If you advise going w/ synth, what is required to perform a change-out?
I'd advise using whatever Ford tells you to use. Tranny fluid can be very tempermental. To be safe, I'd use Quaker States synthetic 4x4 atf, it meats all the requirements for mercon, as well as merconV and dexron III. It's best to take this to a pro, though I did it on my F-150 and it wasn't very hard, only problem with doing it that way is that you can't drain all the fluid, most pro shops will do like a reverse vacuum kinda thing to get all the old fluid out.

(3) Anybody out there change their brake fluid and power sterring fluid as a matter of routine maintenance?
Power steering fluid yes, brake fluid only when doing brake pads or brake work of any kind.

Don't know the answer to #4, hope that helps.
 






I agree with Matt on all of the above.
I would be carefull to make sure you get all the chemical you use to flush the system out of the system.
Personaly I dont like flushes. It puts a strong chem in the system. If you drain and fill every year I would think a flush would not be needed at all.
I would be sure to use distilled water and put in some bars leak gold (dry) as leak preventative.
 






I agree on the chemical flush concern, Bill.

I think the chemistry of the cooling system would be better maintained without chemical shocking by annual partial drain and refils using coolant and distilled water, and a complete coolant change-out when the hoses and t-stat are due for replacement.

I have not used the Bar's leak gold, can you provide a little insight on that for me?

Thanks
 






It is basicly ground up walnut shells & ginger root. It just floats around in your system untill it finds a leak and then air causes it to swell up & fill the void.
GM puts it in Northstar engines. Not sure about Ford. Just some preventative maint.
 






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