First tow

Discussion in 'Towing & Hauling' started by coolzzy, May 13, 2018.

  1. coolzzy

    coolzzy Full Access Members

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    Wow. Just wow. I just did 300 miles round trip pulling 6300 pounds of rv (29ft bumper to tongue) through the mountains. I should preface this by saying I also installed a 5 star 87 octane performance/tow tune and ran 89 octane gas.

    This truck is a beast, once I got my hitch dialed in, it would hold 6th gear at 70 mph on the highway without downshifting. Transmission stayed at 203 but spiked to 208 for 30 seconds on a long steep climb in the back woods roads. I had power in spades to accelerate up hill if needed and the motor was silent. My 2010 5.4 F150 with max tow and similiar tune down shifted quite a bit on this same drive and in places would be in 2nd gear at high rpm. This little ecoboost never dropped below 4th gear, and I returned 10.5mpg (hand calculated) for the complete trip.

    I guess this makes me an ecoboost believer now. My truck still felt more stable in turns and on the highway but it had 20" LT tires. The family loved all the room to spread out in the expy and I continued to be amazed how well it performed. I'm now wishing for a max tow F150 with this motor!
     
    mossback, 07xln and shane_th_ee like this.
  2. johnboneske

    johnboneske Full Access Members

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    What year Expedition do you have? Standard or EL? Our trailer weighs about 6500 loaded and the engine struggles above 60. Trans temps are good (around 185) with Torque Pro, and feel solid otherwise. The 5.4 just doesn't have enough pull for it.

    The 2018 F150's have max tow with the 3.5 they say they can tow 12700!
     
  3. coolzzy

    coolzzy Full Access Members

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    Mine is a 17 EL with HD tow package and 3.73 gears. What year is your expedition? If it has 3.31 gears it will really struggle as you are experiencing. Also, do you have the 6 speed transmission as that really makes the best of the power band of the 5.4. I would also reccomended a tune since it wakes up the lazy electronic throttle but gears are really what makes or breaks the 5.4. It will never tow as well as the twin turbo just by the difference in hp and torque but properly geared, the 5.4 with 6 speed auto is a good towing engine.
     
  4. 07xln

    07xln Full Access Members

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    Glad to hear you had a good towing experience. I have a 17 El Limited and I tow everything from an 18ft car hauler with a random truck on it, or a utv and a couple of atv's to a 35' toy hauler that comes in at around 9k lbs. The Expy tows them all well. When I tow heavy with my toy hauler I swap from my 5star 93 performance tune to the 93 tow tune and it pulls it very well. Like you mine will just cruise in 6th the whole time. I have to really lose some momentum for it to downshift. Been really impressed with the capabilities of my truck
     
  5. johnboneske

    johnboneske Full Access Members

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    I have a 2003, with the old 2 valve motor, and 4R70W 4 speed and 3.73 gears... I know to stay away from the 2006 to 2009 with the 2 piece spark plugs. In the near future we are getting either a newer Expedition or F150. Likely get a 2010 to 2012 Expedition or F150, or something in that nature. Would like a Excursion or F250...but the wife probably wont sign off on that.

    I see you guys talk about a tune from 5 star... care to tell me more? I am currently limited to 260HP and 300 lb ft torque.
     
  6. coolzzy

    coolzzy Full Access Members

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    The two piece spark plug issue was solved in late 07. I know that for the F150 at least, 09 was the first year with the 6r80 six speed transmission (but they didn't get select shift until 11 when the 5.0 and 3.5 were introduced). The expedition soldiered on with the 5.4 (and no select shift) until 2015 when it was retired and the ecoboost became the only choice of motors.

    A five star tune helps the 3v 5.4, 4v 5.0, and the twin turbo motors with electronic throttle, not sure what if any gains it can provide to the 2v motor or if 5 star offers a tune for that generation. The tune basically adjusts the electronic throttle so that for example when you give it 10% throttle, it actually gives you 20% which means you don't have to floor it for a downshift. It also holds the gears longer (on the speed) to keep the motor in or near its 3500rpm power band longer (5.4). If looking at F150s, don't get anything older than a 10, the 09 had the 6 speed but still a belt driven fan clutch whereas the 10 had electric cooling fans. Skip 11 and 12 if possible for either 5.0 or 3.5 as they were still having some new model year gremlins (oblong cylinder bores, timing chain issues cac issues, etc).

    Dont even think about buying any F150 or expedition without 3.73 rear end gears either it really makes a difference. The 5.0 pickups were impossible to find with those gears early on since the max tow package was only available on the ecoboost. The expeditions from all years were available with 3.73 but lots had 3.31 which is a dog for any motor you put in front of them.
     
  7. johnboneske

    johnboneske Full Access Members

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    I would never get anything but a 3.73 or higher.

    I thought I heard from someone on here that the 2006 to 2009 expeditions had the 2 piece spark plugs. I know that the 2 valve motor was used in 2004 and part of 2005, I think? Good to about the trans too. I am only after a Expy with the tow package. No point in downgrading from what I have to not be able to pull our TT any better. I will look into 5 star for sure when we finally get a different Expy... Thank you for the advise.
     
  8. johnboneske

    johnboneske Full Access Members

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    Just found this:

    2005 to 2008

    20266 2004-2008 F150/2006-2008 MARK LT/2005-2008 EXPEDITION/NAVIGATOR/F-SUPER DUTY 5.4L 3V ENGINE - MISC DRIVABILITY CONCERNS/VERIFY SCHEDULED MAINTENANCE COMPLETE
    SOME 2004-2008 F150 / 2006-2008 MARK LT / 2005-2008 EXPEDITION/NAVIGATOR/F-SUPER DUTY VEHICLES WITH 5.4L 3V ENGINE WITH GREATER THAN 60,000 MILES, THAT ARE SUBJECTED TO SPECIAL OPERATING CONDITIONS, MAY EXHIBIT MISFIRE DTCS AND IGNITION SYSTEM RELATED DRIVABILITY CONCERNS UNDER HIGH-LOAD OR WIDE OPEN THROTTLE (WOT). SPECIAL OPERATING CONDITIONS ARE DEFINED AS EXTENSIVE IDLING AND/OR LOW-SPEED DRIVING FOR LONG DISTANCES AS IN HEAVY COMMERCIAL USE SUCH AS DELIVERY, HEAVY TOWING, TAXI, PATROL CAR OR LIVERY. BEFORE ATTEMPTING REPAIRS, VERIFY RECOMMENDED 60,000 MILE SCHEDULED MAINTENANCE SERVICE HAS BEEN PERFORMED WHICH INCLUDES SPARK PLUG REPLACEMENT. REFER TO TSB 08-07-06 WHICH PROVIDES UPDATED SPARK PLUG REMOVAL PROCEDURE. IF SPARK PLUGREPLACEMENT DOES NOT CORRECT THE CONDITION CONTINUE WITH NORMAL PC/ED DIAGNOSTIC ROUTINES.
     
  9. coolzzy

    coolzzy Full Access Members

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    In the F150, the 08s had updated valve covers and used a one piece spark plug, should be the same for the expedition. The revision is noticeable by the color of the cops, I can't recall if black or brown is the newer style, but also the VCT solenoids were no longer externally replaceable and required removing the valve covers to replace.
     
  10. sjwelds

    sjwelds Full Access Members

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    Mines an 08, with the new style plugs, and brown coil boots.
     

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