• Report: #776133

Complaint Review: Ford Motor Company

  • Submitted: Tue, September 13, 2011
  • Updated: Tue, May 29, 2012

  • Reported By: inspects — Scottsdale Arizona United States of America
Ford Motor Company
Internet United States of America

Ford Motor Company Engine Design Poor Spark Plug design costing possibly $1,300.00 to have Spark Plugs replaced All 50 States, Internet

*General Comment: Advice for the guy with bad news from Ford

*Consumer Comment: F150 Spark Plugs

*Consumer Suggestion: I am not a Ford employee.

*Consumer Suggestion: I am not a Ford employee.

*General Comment: Lets all picket Ford Dealerships

*Consumer Comment: Still charging $1300 for plugs; who cares about TSB?

*Consumer Comment: Additional information

*Consumer Comment: Cost of ownership

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Ford Motor Company designed a Spark Plug Assembly which requires special tools to remove the Spark Plugs and 95% of the time the Spark Plugs break off in the Engine Head costing consumers between $600-$1500 to replace Spark Plugs, some need to have their engines pulled to replace the Spark Plugs.

This is a flawed design Ford failed to mention to the public and are making Millions of dollars replacing their faulty parts because of their faulty design.

Please view this website and post your concerns as well: http://autoforum.classifieds1000.com/Ford-F150/Spark_Plug_Nightmare?pg=12

Each of us who Ford tried to get $600 - $1200 from for their faulty plug design needs to make sure
that's the most expensive $600 - $1200 gain Ford has ever garnered for themselves. That next $35K truck that they don't sell should do the trick. And the next potential F150 customer who hears from you and me,
should twist the blade.

There should be a Class Action Law Suite against Ford Motor Company for their deliberate design flaw costing every Ford Truck or other type vehicle with this faulty Spark Plug design possibly over $1,000 to have the Spark Plug replaced, which are needed, so your stuck paying this money to whoever replaces the Spark Plugs, because their designed to break off in the cylinder heads...!

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/13/2011 08:13 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Ford-Motor-Company/internet/Ford-Motor-Company-Engine-Design-Poor-Spark-Plug-design-costing-possibly-130000-to-hav-776133. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 8Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 General Comment

Advice for the guy with bad news from Ford

AUTHOR: Ryan warner - (U.S.A.)

QUICK STORY:  My 05
F150 is running smoothly.  But although I
spent the money on 8 coils, 8 plugs, penetrating oil, aluminum anti-seize paste, a LISLE 65600 plug extractor, and a long swiveling spark plug wrench, I first only replaced the one coil and its plug that the diagnostic identified as bad.  Right away, I had a nicely running truck to buy time until I got around to changing the rest of the plugs the following weekend.

WHAT FIXED IT: Following the diagnostic, I replaced one COIL: $42, One PLUG: $12.77, ANTISEIZE: ($17.54 for way too big a bottle), and PB Blaster PENETRATING OIL: $5.00 (used a few squirts of the can) in non-tool parts totaling $98, with tons of penetrating oil and anti-seize for later jobs.  And at $60 for a one-time expense, I had the LISLE 65600 (from E-bay) on hand for the rest of them.

CAUTION:  Many forums recommend heating up the engine before removing the plugs.  HOWEVER: I HAVE the new service notes from ford describing how they tell their mechanics to change the plugs.  And due to the SOFT ALUMINUM heads, they caution to never attempt to remove the
plugs (steel threads) with a warm or hot engine.  They go on to specify that the engine must be allowed to cool to room temperature before attempting to remove them.  Concerned about possibly damaging the  heads, I changed the plugs with the engine at room temperature.  After
all, I had the LISLE 65600 and would prefer a broken plug to stripped heads.  The next weekend, I changed the rest of the plugs.  Only a couple did not break. 

SO THE REALITY:  One $42 COIL (O'Reilley auto parts) and one $12.77 plug (E-bay, new) did what Ford was going to charge me a minimum of $318 to replaceand they too would certainly have worked quickly and also left part of the plug in the heads, charging me even more to remove the stub.   

LESSON LEARNED:  I used the PB Blaster penetrating oil on all 8 plugs the night before.  I then barely loosened the spark plug around 10 am the next day and sprayed in some more, leaving it for 2 more hours.  THE PLUG STILL BROKE.  But no worries, the LISLE 65600 tool worked
beautifully as advertised.  So, for the remaining 7 plugs, I did not goof off trying to too hard to be gingerly with them.  Had I just taken the plugs out the following morning and not messed around trying to boost my ego with dreams of getting them all out intact (epic fail), Id have been free the next weekend.

COILS vs BOOTS: 
From forums, I learned that often only the boot and a corroded spring go bad on the coil (not the coil itself).  So I picked up seven of boots/springs at $5 each from NAPA and planned used them on the remaining 8 plugs, keeping reinstalling the original coils.  Coils from O-Reiley online ran $42 a
piece.  OReilley let me return the seven that I did not use, but at that price, I kept two, just in case.  After all, I want to see how much mileage I can get out of just those new $5 boots and springs from NAPA. 
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#2 Consumer Comment

F150 Spark Plugs

AUTHOR: Rfry - (U.S.A.)

I own a 2005 F150 that has 48,000 miles. It has always been an excellent running truck until recently and it developed an occasional misfire. I took it to a Ford dealer and was told that I would have to pay $122 for the diagnostics (OK), replace the spark plugs $377 (?) & replace 1 ignition coil $130 (?) for a total of $629 IF none of the spark plug broke coming out. ??? I had to inquire, please explain about breaking the spark plugs (personally I have changed hundreds of spark plugs and have never broken one).

The service manager explained that the spark pluge in my truck were prone to breaking when they were removed and if any of them broke when they were removing them, I would be charged an additional $50 per plug.

I then had to inquire, exactly why would it be my problem if his Ford service people were not skilled enough to remove spark plugs from my Ford vehicle without breaking them. His only answer was that I owned a vehicle that had spark plugs that broke most of the time when they were removed.

Needless to day, I paid for the practically worthless diagnostics report and left feeling like I had been raped.



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#3 Consumer Suggestion

I am not a Ford employee.

AUTHOR: Matt P. - (United States of America)

Furthermore,

The cost of labor is the cost of labor.  It is not free.  Due to the economy, and the severe drop in the value of the dollar, what used to cost a couple hundred bucks in the days of old are now approaching 1000+.  Just look at the price of gold, gas, or any other commodity.
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#4 Consumer Suggestion

I am not a Ford employee.

AUTHOR: Matt P. - (United States of America)

I was referred to this by someone posting it on a forum I frequent (f150online.com), my username is 06bluemeaniexl.  I am a proud F150 owner, but I did my research before purchasing and got a 2V 4.6L, to avoid this and other issues that plagued the new for 2004+ 3V 5.4L.

I wish I had a dollar for every time I visit that site and there is a a new member complaining about having to pay to have the spark plugs changed, and then when they break, having to pay extra.  Its the nature of the beast.  You pay for the time it takes to make the repair.

Here's the deal.  Ford has admitted that there was a design flaw, however, the likelihood of issues increase the longer you wait to have it done.  Ford has been recommending having the plugs changed early for this reason, and having a mechanic or professional follow the TSB to ensure that the job is done right, with as minimal issue / cost as possible.  Because this isn't a safety issue and won't likely affect the lifespan of the vehicle, Ford has very little responsibility to do anything anyways.

Shop around, get a few different opinions, don't settle for the first quote you get.
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#5 General Comment

Lets all picket Ford Dealerships

AUTHOR: Foun on road dead - (United States of America)

I hear thousand of complaints against Ford and their spark plugs ejecting or shooting out of the head.

It just happened to us last week. 72,000 miles with excellent maintenance records. 

Everyone complains and writes their complaints on the internet but that is it.

I say lets picket  all Ford Dealerships this Sunday May27th 2012. Please be a part of this event.

When Ford sees that they are losing sales, maybe they will do something about this spark plug problem. Picket Ford everyone Picket Ford Dealerships this Sunday. Please get on the internet and spread the word. Also, if anyone is willing to actually make a stand and picket Ford Dealerships this Sunday please email me at picketford@yahoo.com  just let me know which dealership you will be at and appprox how many people will be picketing with you. Everyone needs to do something about Ford. Come on guys don't make me do this alone. We could have a huge impact 
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#6 Consumer Comment

Still charging $1300 for plugs; who cares about TSB?

AUTHOR: Ryan warner - (U.S.A.)

To Rebuttal author Mat P.,  You must have financial concerns with ford, possibly as a paid representative.  Otherwise, what happy customer visits a web site called, "RipoffReport" about a truck they own, or don't own, to defend Ford Motor Company?  And you insinuated the complainant was 'negligent' for not changing the plugs earlier than their 'owner's manual' told them to change them; "Neglect or ignorance is not an excuse when it comes to vehicle ownership."   Is not Ford negligent for allowing this to go on for so many years?  Is Ford not negligent for continuing to sell 2-piece Motorcraft (Autolite) spark plugs which Ford Knows will break off in the consumer's engines?  You also stated, "The cost to change the plugs on these models are only $200 - $250 more expensive than the 4.6L models.  Gotta pay to play."  With so many customers paying about $1200 for a spark plug
change,  do you think $950-$1000 is a reasonable price for a hard working customer to pay for what should be a simple spark plug change on a Working Man's truck?  Since those customers did not buy BMWs or Porsches, they shouldn't have to 'Pay to Play.'  Ford must be the wrong company for all of them.  And we all need to make sure that's the last $1200 spark plug change they'll ever need, when it comes time for their next truck.  No Ford loyalty ... no customer loyalty.  Now Ford has to pay to play ... dirty.
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#7 Consumer Comment

Additional information

AUTHOR: Matt P. - (United States of America)

Also, when following the Ford issued TSB, most mechanics have had a great success rate of removing the plugs without or with very limited breakage.  The 95% broken figure is not only a gross exaggeration but also extremely misleading.
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#8 Consumer Comment

Cost of ownership

AUTHOR: Matt P. - (United States of America)

A TSB has been released to deal with this issue.

This affects only 2004 - early 2008 F150's with 3V 5.4L engines.   Late 2008's and newer have a revised engine head design that eliminates this issue.

The cost to change the plugs on these models are only $200 - $250 more expensive than the 4.6L models.  Gotta pay to play.

For people with a 5.4L F150, it is recommended to change your plugs earlier than specified by the owner's manual to prevent the breaking issues.  Neglect or ignorance is not an excuse when it comes to vehicle ownership.
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