Could someone please help me? I took my 2007 Expedition to the local shop for a tune up as well as a small "stumble" upon excelleration. I was told a tune up was in order, and coils #2 and #5 were misfiring. 5 out of 8 spark plugs broke. $999.04 later, the truck is WORSE than the original complaint. I took it back to the garage 4 times since 10/25/11. They cleaned the fuel injectors, suggested "bad gas" and advised I "run it like hell" to get the gas out, and then...they suggested the computer was bad. Only for it to wind up at the Ford Dealership (the garage took it there). The dealership now says cylinder #1 and #3 are damaged. The garage is not taking any responsibility for this and says it's Fords' "bad design". I have enlisted the help of an attorney, but...it's going to be terribly difficult to prove it was the garage's fault. Ford suggests we perform a "bore scope test" to determine if there is any debris from the spark plugs lodged inside the cylinder. If this is the case, does this become a garage issue? or Ford "bad design" issue?
To make bad matters worse, this is my family's primary vehicle, I am upside down in it, and owe another 20 months at $619.00. PLUS this bore scope test costs $600-$1000 right at the Holidays. If i was any less than a Lady, I would take the cost out of the snotty mechanics rear-end at the local shop. Any advise would be greatly appreciated.
It is an unusual design but if done properly, the plugs can be removed without any further damage. My thought is that the first shop damaged the engine by doing the job improperly. If thye do a borescope test to see what might have happened. Being that it was driven a bit after the plugs were replaced, it may have covered up the exact cause. I've relpaced the plugs on them, (I'm sure yours must be a 5.4), and haven't had any problems They are tricky to do but they don't have to be done that often. The engines are good when worked on properly.
Are you the original owner ? Don't buy the "bad computer" BS the shop was telling you. Did the Check Engine light come back on after you had the "tune up" by this shop? If the dealer is talking about a bore-scope job, you are looking at a huge repair bill. The bore-scope will be the cheap part. (i.e. replacing the heads or the complete motor if it's mechanically damaged...). Sounds like the local "tune up" shop didn't know what they were doing. Especially to break off 5 of the spark plugs. Wonder if they were broken putting them in, or taking the old ones out ? You have to use a flex drive extension on the rear plugs to remove/replace them, because they're tucked in close to the firewall and hard to get to. They could've even stripped the sparkplug holes out trying to install them. ( You would be lucky if that is all they did...). This may very well have to be settled in court. Really sucks. How much does the dealer there charge for a "tune up". Maybe they can just un-dork the other shop's crappy work. But generally speaking, when the Ford dealers see a woman with a malfunctioning car/truck come in they just see dollar signs rolling over their eyes. You may just be better off trading it in as-is. I think you're looking at a huge head ache.
Not all dealers take advantage of women, but some, and even shopsdo. Normally a borescope looks into the engine through the spark plug hole to inspeact what the damage is. Then they can offer the advice as to what happened.
Mike: These plugs on the triton 5.4 are strange looking and can break coming out. There's a special tool to remove the piece that stays in the head. When done properly, there's just extra labor to remove them, but that's all. I haven't broken any yet. Cross fingers.
Thanks for your feedback. I am the original owner. Ioriginally took the truck to the shop for a tune-up, and because there was anintermitted “stumble” upon acceleration. There was no check-engine light that initiated the trip to theshop. The check engine light came onafter the second trip to the shop, when I told them it was idling rough. That’s when they assured me it was the fuelinjectors that needed to be cleaned and I was clear to take it 300 miles out oftown. It was only on my return trip whenthe truck almost left us stranded on the side of the road and the check enginecame on – flashed. The shop said it didnot store a code, and they had no idea what was wrong with it. Then insisted I clean the fuel injectorswhich they performed at no charge. OnceI picked the truck up, it was still idling rough. I was assured it was because I had “bad gas”and needed to “run the CRAP out of it”.
Before I took it to the shop, the truck idled fine…actuallypurred, and ran the same. The only issuewas the “stumble” that didn’t happen all the time. It actually started about a week before Itook it in. I’ve just received a call from the owner ofthe franchise. He agreed to pay for asecond opinion diagnosis, but insists is a Ford matter, and not a “garage”matter. I’ve sought the advice of anattorney, but…at this point, if it’s not over $5K, I’ve got to come out of pocketfirst, and then forge ahead in small claims court. If it’s over $5K, then my attorney may havesome interest. The attorney has advised thatI take it for a second opinion, and then...cross my fingers. The attorney is also looking into a Class ActionLaw Suit against Ford. He is not awareof one at this time, but is researching it.
Also - the owner stated the mechanic followed the TSB instructions. I asked him if the mechanic allowed my plugs to soak in the carburetor cleaner as suggested in the TSB. He said it would not have mattered. The plugs would have broken off regardless. I would expect if the mechanic did not follow the TSB, then the garage would be even MORE at fault.
One more thing...the owner said it doesn't matter - it's a Ford issue and not a garage issue because of the faulty design of the spark plugs. They break, and it has nothing to do with his garage/mechanics. Does this sound right to any of you???
I'm sooo frustrated!!!!!
Does anyone know of a more recent TSB than the March 2008?
There are two ways to remove the plugs when they break. Both won't cause engine damage if done properly. That TSB is the latest one out. There shouldn't be a class action lawsuit to cover shops that don't get it done right. Shops complain but that's what we're here for, to repair and maintain cars. We all can make mistakes too.
We've had that over here with some models a few years back. Had it with a family members car and to remove broken plugs and to give myself peace of mind with regard to any metal /ceramic/ swarf /plug parts falling into bores causing damage , I removed cyl head .Then , after removing broken plugs and rebuilding , I knew it would be o.k . Had it on other makes as well as Ford . Know a few other places and mechanics who do them in position and seem to get away with it every time without any comebacks , but it only takes missing the slightest piece inside the cyl/ bores ............................
Bert - Could you please tell me the two ways to remove the spark plugs once they brake?
I've made an appt with a local shop that has been around for 28 years. Very respectable (so I've heard). When I mentioned the issues, and where I originally took it, they responded with exasperation, and said, "OH GOD!!! Get it to us ASAP!". I am hoping this all pans out, and my truck is fixed. I'd hate to think about what this is going to cost at the end. Hopefully, if there is debris found inside the engine, the local 'garage' will take responsibility. I don't want to think about lawyers, court, and drama!!! I'd like to keep this as simple as possible.
The class action law suit was something I read on other blogs. Something about...the spark plugs not lasting for the duration of the promised "life span". I don't know enough about the legal part of it. I'm more concerned about fixing my truck.
The AutoGuide.com network consists of the largest network of enthusiast-owned enthusiast-operated automotive communities.
AutoGuide.com provides the latest car reviews, auto show coverage, new car prices, and automotive news. The AutoGuide network operates more than 100 automotive forums where our users consult peers for shopping information and advice, and share opinions as a community.