Is The Dealership The Best Place To Take My Diesel Pickup For Repairs When It Is Out Of Warranty?

28th Feb 2017

Q - Thanks for the great article on 6.0 powerstroke problems. I am experiencing some of them now. I bought the truck with 150k miles, and everything is stock. I live in Wisconsin, so can't say I'll use your shop, but just want to get your opinion on whether a Ford dealer is a good place to start with diagnostic work? The main symptoms is overheating while towing my camper (8000 pounds). Otherwise the truck runs fine. I have already replaced the coolant cap, since it does puke coolant when this happens, but that didn't fix the problem. I'm not a mechanic, so will need to rely on someone else to fix the truck. i just don't want to get taken for a ride. Thanks, Rick

A - Hi Rick,

I’ll be completely honest with you. You will want to avoid the dealership 9 out of 10 times unless you have no other choice. At the same time there are tons of fly by night “diesel shops” popping up daily. So, my advice would be to find a reputable independent shop that has been in business for a while. Their labor rate is generally less expensive than a dealership and they have the ability to use better aftermarket parts and solutions that most dealers can’t or won’t. I’m definitely knocking the technicians at the dealerships at all, but they are usually the most expensive option. We also see some issues in smaller areas where the dealership doesn’t really have an experienced diesel tech on staff.

As for your truck problem, fill the coolant up and take your truck up a hill with the camper connected. At the top pull over and see if there is coolant leaking around the cap. If there is, I hate to break it to you, but you probably have bad head gaskets.