My 2003 Ford F150 has a Sender Assembly (replacement cost is $12.86) which is supposed to send a signal to the Hot/Cold gauge to report that the motor is overheating. The sender assembly failed and the engine was overheating without my knowledge. This caused both head gaskets to blow allowing water to then get inside the engine. Because the sender assembly was not working, it also failed to send a signal to the Oil gauge that the oil pressure was low once water began to get into the engine.
There was no indication that there was a problem and it occurred between oil changes. All gauges registered normally but the engine was damaged beyond repair. The mileage on the truck when this happened was 71,976. A new engine had to be installed and that cost $5,405.12. Even worse that this, the dealership (Vaughn Ford in Oakdale, Louisiana) took 20 days to determine the problem, then order the engine and install it. My cost for the rent car was $672, out of my pocket.
I purchased this truck as a Certified Pre-Owned vehicle from Sand Dollar Autoplex, Galveston, Texas. Before I purchased it, I ran the history on the vehicle and there had been no problems with it prior to my purchasing the truck when it had 52,045 miles on it.
I sent a letter to Ford Motor Company explaining what happened and asking them for some kind of reimbursement. The company called my house and left a phone message for me to call them. I did and their response is as follows: The dealership in Louisiana says you did not keep up the maintenance so it is all your problem. We will not reimburse you for any of your expenses. I reminded them that it took Ford Motor Companya full 5 days from order by the dealership to receipt by the dealership of the new engine. Ford's response was: It is not our fault.
What a ripoff ! In Ford's manufacturing process, they do not install a "backup" for the Sender Assembly so when a $12.86 part fails, you will have to buy a new engine. This will be the last Ford I ever buy and I hope by posting this, I can prevent someone else from experiencing this problem. When your truck goes in for maintenance, FORCE your dealership to verify that the sender assembly is still functioning or you too may be out the cost of a new engine.