Catch can saga

Disclaimer: Links on this page pointing to Amazon, eBay and other sites may include affiliate code. If you click them and make a purchase, we may earn a small commission.

familyman12345

New Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2023
Posts
1
Reaction score
0
Location
Lenexa, KS
A few months back, and based on the recommendations of YouTube master FordTechMakuloco and his videos about the imminent disaster waiting if I waited any longer I installed a $600 RX catch can on my 2016 Expedition with 145K miles, which at the time was running just fine. (By the way, the YT videos on this are all for installation on an F150 and not an Expedition. While the installation with regard to the engine is identical, the bodywork is a different matter as the grille comes up hood on the F150 and it doesn’t on the Expedition.) I drove the vehicle for about 1K miles to make sure everything was good before taking it on A 3K trip to Montana - 2 adults, 2 kids + luggage, no trailer or off-roading.

On the return trip, the engine started misfiring at highway speeds, and by the time we got back to the KC area, it was running VERY roughly. I took it to a reputable local repair shop, and they told me that the catch can was not installed properly and it had totally plugged my cat converters. They uninstalled the catch can plumbing, replaced the converters, and replaced all 6 fouled spark plugs (brand new NGK ruthenium plugs) to the tune of $3800. The car was still running roughly, so they told me to run through a couple of tanks of 91 octane gas. This didn’t make any difference at all. I took it back again, and they informed me that the ignition coils were bad. I replaced them myself, and now it runs like a champ.

I’m not a professional mechanic, but I know my way around an engine fairly well. I watched the installations videos multiple times and was in constant contact with the technician at RX to assure that it was installed correctly, including pictures of the completed setup.

With the cost of the catch can, the repair bills, and new spark plugs and ignition coils, I’m out close to $5,000, and I’m honestly not sure that any of it was necessary. Has anyone on this forum had a similar experience to mine? Was I a fool to do any of this work?

Thanks and please be brutally honest (but no personal attacks, please) in any comments.
 

JamaicaJoe

Full Access Members
Joined
Dec 20, 2020
Posts
681
Reaction score
271
Location
Oviedo FL
I find it odd that the ignition coils would be bad. How was the catch can installed incorrectly? I can only picture there being a problem where it filled up and somehow delivered a big gulp of oil into the intake. Did the mechanic say as much? How was your oil consumption? Did it amount to enough to fill the can?
 

Yupster Dog

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
Joined
Dec 7, 2018
Posts
1,350
Reaction score
884
Location
Virginia
With the cost of the catch can, the repair bills, and new spark plugs and ignition coils, I’m out close to $5,000, and I’m honestly not sure that any of it was necessary. Has anyone on this forum had a similar experience to mine? Was I a fool to do any of this work?
You are not wrong, something in that scenario is defiantly fishy.

What do you think @LokiWolf ?

Welcome to the forum
 

gtr09

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2021
Posts
80
Reaction score
51
Location
Midwest
Yeah that story stinks. To my knowledge plugged cats don't cause misfires, they mimic low fuel pressure or trans / power issues. Here's an appropriate video from FordTechMakuloco discussing getting ripped off because an auto shop blamed plugged cats, and he talks about symptoms of plugged cats. https://youtu.be/cMSfpBg3Xyw?t=920
 

JimR_TN

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 30, 2022
Posts
98
Reaction score
65
Location
Middle TN
FordTechMakuloco Just put out a video on getting a second opinion. Pretty good chance your catch can install was fine and cats were fine.
 

LokiWolf

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
Joined
Apr 2, 2016
Posts
3,653
Reaction score
2,466
Location
Richmond VA
First off, FordTechMakuloco is a decent mechanic, and knowledgeable on a lot of the Ford idiosyncrasies, but he is not the end all be all. Just needed to get that out of the way.

Let's discuss a few things that appear obvious to me.

There is NO WAY a catch can, even a BAD and terribly messed up install could cause fouled up Cats. They might have been fouled, but the catch can did in NO WAY cause that.

I personally believe the RX catch setup is WAY overkill for the VERY small amounts of benefit over a JLOSC(JLT) kit at the 3rd of the price, mostly because the install is MUCH more complex and there is greater risk of issues. I digress.

Here is is my theory. Your IC has oil/fluid build up and needs a weep hole. The RX install caused that to be more of an issue because of the driver side tubing. I still believe you have that issue, and it will return. This is a bigger issue on the 16-17 vs the 18+.

My guess is also, the plugs, if not original, might have been replaced once. Ford's recommended replacement interval is CRAP! The current Motorcraft part number Ford is currently recommending for your year is also complete and total crap, and are notorious for losing the proper gapping. I would love to know the part number you had installed.

I am a BIG fan of 91+ Octane fuel in EcoBoosts, but unless it had a high Ethanol content, or was a good brand fuel, with some good detergents, it was not going to help.

Replacing the coils with 142K on the Odometer, is completely justified. That is a good amount of miles assuming they are the factory coils.

Basically I think you had the perfect storm, and the Catch Can had very little to do with it. Old Plugs, old Coils, Fluid in the IC, old Cats.

I would do a Google search for F150 EcoBoost IC weep hole, and drill one. You will get some seepage. I would get a simpler install method Catch Can like the JLOSC Brand(will take 20 minutes to install). Also, get somebody with a code scanner that can use MSCan and see if you have any codes for the O2 sensors, because if they weren't replaced when you had the Cats done, they are going to need it soon.

You basically in the long run did all the deferred maintenance that was not done previously on your Expedition. Sorry!

@familyman12345
 
Last edited:

timo482

Active Member
Joined
Nov 21, 2021
Posts
28
Reaction score
7
Location
minnesots
anything with fuel, air, ignition i take straight to ford.. all the rest is ok at a "local repair shop" its just WAYYYYYYY to easy for a tech who works on chevy most of the time to mis diagnose and then replace a whole lot of parts.. its a common malady to just keep replacing parts till you find the problem.. i can also see somebody saying that some mod is the cause - but some mods like a catch can almost cannot cause the problem unless the can overflowed. charge air coolers can and do cause problems if they dont have a weep hole [all new ones have a weep hole] ... you say that all that money did not fix the problem.. but the coils did.. the MOST COMMON MISFIRE on a ford is ... drum roll .... coils. i change plugs regularly specifically to prevent sized plugs.. they dont go bad they get welded into the head.. its cheap insurance to change the plugs just for that... and this story of cubic money spent on easy to replace and expensive / profitable parts is why i only do those particular services at a well known dealer with a real shop and real techs. just my personal opinion ps i always insist on the used parts being returned to me for inspection..
 

Staff online

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
53,935
Posts
504,792
Members
47,758
Latest member
Spiritdancer11
Top