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2015 Ford F-150 - Edmunds Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Posts: 10,110
edited March 2016 in Ford
2015 Ford F-150 - Edmunds Road Test

Yes, it's that time again. The oil change reminder flicked on while I was driving our 2015 Ford F-150 and a quick check of the Engine Information screen showed the oil life down to five percent. I was near an auto parts store and a Ford dealership, so I bought the oil at one and a filter at the other and got to work.

Read the full story here


Comments

  • banhughbanhugh Posts: 315
    It makes you wonder whether putting back that underbody panel is worth the hassle given the fuel economy you get from this truck
  • miata52miata52 Posts: 114
    You're doing it wrong. Get one of the devices that sucks the oil out through the dipstick hole. No more mess, no more removing PITA plastic covers, and you still completely empty the oil pan.
  • s197gts197gt Posts: 486
    appreciate the DIY stuff. i do like the satisfaction of changing my own oil, but rarely do it anymore. the cost savings just isn't there and it is generally a pain.

    "to avoid getting my hand soaked by the deluge of oil"

    gloves? maybe you are old school, but, really, it's ok to wear them. no shame.

    "the thick stream did once again strike the stabilizer bar"

    i'd wrap the bar in a plastic bag from the grocery store to keep the oil off it.

    diy is definitely more fun when you don't have to work so hard to clean up. kind of like the cook doesn't wash the dishes.
  • miata52 said:

    You're doing it wrong. Get one of the devices that sucks the oil out through the dipstick hole. No more mess, no more removing PITA plastic covers, and you still completely empty the oil pan.

    Or get a Fumato Oil Engine Drain Valve - makes it so much cleaner and easier and you never need to take out the drain plug. Though I just looked and they don't make one of this truck. Bummer.
  • kirkhilles1kirkhilles1 Posts: 863
    What a mess (literally and figuratively) for one of the best selling vehicles in the world. Clearly more thought should've been given in this area.
  • I agree with kirkhilles1. Why, in this modern day and age, is there not a much easier way to do oil changes? Maybe have a sealed tank that can be removed and recycled with the oil in it already or that you can change as easily as pouring out a jug of milk and refilling? Typical manufacturer malaise where it's "why spend money developing anything that won't affect the bottom line?"

    This is where full-electric car makers could offer something that Tesla doesn't. Make the batteries easily changeable so that you drive into the "refueling" station, they drop the batteries out the bottom and replace them with fresh ones and you're on your way. They could track your battery usage as they probably already do and you pay a small amount each time you switch out that will eventually pay for a new set of batteries over time if you use their service.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Yep, just look up forklift battery replacement - quick and easy. EVs will hopefully make all this maintenance stuff mostly go away.
  • miata52 said:

    You're doing it wrong. Get one of the devices that sucks the oil out through the dipstick hole. No more mess, no more removing PITA plastic covers, and you still completely empty the oil pan.

    Or get a Fumato Oil Engine Drain Valve - makes it so much cleaner and easier and you never need to take out the drain plug. Though I just looked and they don't make one of this truck. Bummer.
    The combo of a Fumoto drain valve, a top-mount spin-on filter and a drain location near the right-front wheel on my GTI means I could literally do an oil change in fifteen minutes, all four wheels on the ground, with nothing more than a drain pan, rag and filter wrench, wearing evening clothes.
  • misterfusionmisterfusion Posts: 471
    edited March 2016

    This is where full-electric car makers could offer something that Tesla doesn't. Make the batteries easily changeable so that you drive into the "refueling" station, they drop the batteries out the bottom and replace them with fresh ones and you're on your way. They could track your battery usage as they probably already do and you pay a small amount each time you switch out that will eventually pay for a new set of batteries over time if you use their service.

    What you have just described was the business model of a company called Better Place, which started out with a lot of promise, but eventually went bankrupt. As for Tesla, I could've sworn that they once did a demonstration of a rapid battery change that worked similar to the way you described, so maybe your vision will come to pass after all.

    And wow, I agree with you and others in this thread about how oil changes could be approached the same way. That was a real SMH moment -- it's so sensible, why hasn't anybody done this?! Must be the work of the all-powerful JiffyLube lobby...
  • ayaoayao Posts: 27
    A few other things that might make your DIY life a little bit better:
    1. nitrile gloves
    2. Form-a-funnel (formafunnel.com)
    3. OTC 5911 Drain Plug Pro magnetic drain plug removal (all time low price on amazon at present)
  • nate001nate001 Posts: 102
    @misterfusion Castrol is working on the Nexcel which is a drop in cartridge, they say it will be similar to replacing the ink in a printer (hopefully they don't price it like ink) and should be coming to new cars in about 5 years.

    http://www.castrol.com/en_gb/united-kingdom/about-us/news-events/castrol-reinvents-oil-change-nexcel.html
  • 5vzfe5vzfe Posts: 161

    This is where full-electric car makers could offer something that Tesla doesn't. Make the batteries easily changeable so that you drive into the "refueling" station, they drop the batteries out the bottom and replace them with fresh ones and you're on your way. They could track your battery usage as they probably already do and you pay a small amount each time you switch out that will eventually pay for a new set of batteries over time if you use their service.

    What you have just described was the business model of a company called Better Place, which started out with a lot of promise, but eventually went bankrupt. As for Tesla, I could've sworn that they once did a demonstration of a rapid battery change that worked similar to the way you described, so maybe your vision will come to pass after all.
    Yeah Tesla was offering this service - and it's pretty slick - but due to low popularity, they're phasing it out. http://fortune.com/2015/06/10/teslas-battery-swap-is-dead/
  • I think I'm beginning to understand your fuel economy issue...12% of your engine hours were spent idling. I drive 90 minutes per day...at your rate, I would be spending almost 11 minutes of that idling. I doubt I spend 5 minutes idling.
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    edited March 2016
    miata52 said:

    You're doing it wrong. Get one of the devices that sucks the oil out through the dipstick hole. No more mess, no more removing PITA plastic covers, and you still completely empty the oil pan.

    I have one of those! I've used one and like it. But it only has a 5-quart capacity. I'll use it again soon with a car that holds no more than that.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • miata52 said:

    You're doing it wrong. Get one of the devices that sucks the oil out through the dipstick hole. No more mess, no more removing PITA plastic covers, and you still completely empty the oil pan.

    This.
    Been using a "Topsider" vacuum tank to change the oil on my E39 BMW for over 10years. With filter access on the top of the engine no need to jack up car or get down on the ground.
    ~20minutes, $25 worth of Mobil 1 and a $6 filter and I've saved ~$90 over a shop doing it, and barely get my hands dirty.
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    I did this about 6 years ago. Excuse the weird edits - I was playing around with making DIY videos solo. And "Top Kill" was a reference to the then-topical BP oil spill, which put the term Top Kill in the news as a way to seal the rupture.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    edited March 2016
    s197gt said:

    gloves? maybe you are old school, but, really, it's ok to wear them. no shame.

    I don't hate them, it's just that I sweat inside them profusely. It's very uncomfortable during and for some period after. My hands are very large, and most of them are one-size-fits-all, which means they're really tight on me. I have and sometimes wear mechanix gloves, but they have no tactile feel. So it's soap and warm water for me. I don't do this often enough to worry about the health risk.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 5,222
    A six year old video. That was just about the time that we were finding out all of the things that had been changing with engine oil and vehicle specifications that had been going largely unnoticed. There were some cars that it was easy to identify if it had a specific requirement. They were primarily the Euro's and the occasional GM that had the Mobil 1 stickers under the hood. But the GMC Terrain in the video, did it have a specific requirement? The answer is yes it did. The Terrain would have required the GM6094M (obsolete) which was in addition to the API SM GF4. There is red print just visible in the video on the back of the bottle shows a Ford specification, but its difficult to make out what that specification was. The GM specification was likely just above that and Castrol did have a number of products that they listed for that GM specification. The problem with that however was that it wasn't policed and it was common to find products that claimed to meet or exceed a given specification that were really no where near the requirements.

    The worst part of this is the clues were everywhere. The base API specs of that time SM and GF4 didn't have a long life designation and were not suitable for extended use, which is what you had with cars like the Terrain that had the maintenance reminder systems. For most people when it came to choosing a product to use, it was far more likely that they would choose one that fell short of their vehicle's spec than it was for them to get something that actually met the spec. This is part of why GM went to the dexos standard and that made it very easy for the consumer to choose the right product since part of that requirement was that the licensed logo had to show up on the front of the bottle.

    Even today just seeing something on the shelf that says "synthetic blend" isn't enough to know if you are choosing the right product for a given vehicle. If this was the Motorcraft product used on the F-150, then of course it would be fine, but if it was another brand then you have to put in a little more effort before you make a choice and read the rest of the label on both sides of the bottle.

    If the Motorcraft product wasn't chosen for the service on the F150, did whatever was chosen happen to have dexos approval?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Does it matter when the techs don't know to wait 15 minutes to check the oil level and wind up overfilling this model by 4 quarts?
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 5,222
    stever said:

    Does it matter when the techs don't know to wait 15 minutes to check the oil level and wind up overfilling this model by 4 quarts?

    I guess you missed the memo. The reason for the requirement to wait to check the level isn't about potentially overfilling based on the assumption that too takes too long for the oil to travel down to the pan when filling. It's about risking getting a false overfull reading and not putting enough oil into the crankcase.

    This was taken approximately thirty seconds after the last quart of oil was added.


    Here it is as viewed from the front. The oil is already at the full mark, but the oil running onto the dipstick makes that a challenge to confirm.



    Dealing with delays in reading fluid levels correctly after filling isn't new.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited March 2016
    Having to wait 15 minutes is new to me and would be a pain, since I typically do a check at least every other fill-up.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 5,222
    stever said:

    Having to wait 15 minutes is new to me and would be a pain, since I typically do a check at least every other fill-up.

    So how does that work for you? Is the level really all that much different depending on how long the vehicle has been stopped? (doubt that it is) But why don't you try it and find out instead of just settling on anyone's perspective on the subject. Check and record your oil level before you start the car tomorrow. Then check and record the level after trips of various lengths and speeds and of course wait periods and see how long it takes to get a reasonably accurate reading.

    We could also get a few more volunteers to do the same and see what their results are. They could also do as I did on their next oil change and record just how long it did take to get a valid reading. That BTW occurred about a minute later with my Escape.

  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited March 2016
    People complain about the lack of them when they are omitted, but I think I'd really rather just lose the dipstick and have a dash readout. My old '97 Outback used to vary a lot depending whether the engine was warm or cold, and the dipstick on it was about impossible to make heads or tails of anyway.

    My old '99 Quest didn't "burn" oil and it was really unusual if the dipstick changed from being checked cold in the garage to getting gas an hour later.

    It all seems rather imprecise. And a readout on your dash could track the level over time as well, for those interested in such things.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 5,222
    stever said:

    People complain

    Noticed that.
    stever said:



    My old '99 Quest didn't "burn" oil and it was really unusual if the dipstick changed from being checked cold in the garage to getting gas an hour later.

    It all seems rather imprecise. And a readout on your dash could track the level over time as well, for those interested in such things.

    Before you add that to the vehicle, what will be the cost to do so both from a manufacturing perspective as well as from a service and repair one when it fails?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited March 2016
    The engineering cost will be absorbed in the usual R&D. The coding will come from the software library and plugged into the ECUs. What's a sensor cost to make - forty cents? So the purchase price wouldn't break the bank.

    R&R out of warranty will be the usual exorbitant expense, but some guy will post a YouTube so that most of us will be able to plug and play for $4.75. :D
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 5,222
    edited March 2016
    OK. Back to the important question. What exactly does "synthetic blend" mean in North America? How does that claim help a consumer to choose the right, or even the best product for their car? What is the minimum standard for a product to be labeled a synthetic blend, and how does that compare to what the actual Ford specification is? (aka reference the Motorcraft 5W20 synthetic blend)
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited March 2016
    It's all marketing. Notice how "synthetic" used to be the "real" stuff when it first became generally available and now all the requirements call for a blend using mineral stock?

    Follow the money. And follow the owner's manual.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 5,222
    stever said:

    It's all marketing.

    No it's not, and besides, this should be about educating the consumer so that they understand what is right, and what is "marketing" that they need to be aware of.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited March 2016
    Some of it is for mpg or emissions. But there's no reason the engineers can't design for the "common" available oil instead of requiring new oil specs that are different from the API or SAE best available technology. That's where the marketing comes in. Want some Honda break-in oil? See your dealer. Want some dexos? Pay the licensing fee to GM.

    Not much different from the engine ads. That thing got a Hemi? That's a trademark, not an accurate description of a combustion chamber currently in use today. Got an EcoBoost? Have fun finding oil at Walmart in the 40 foot long aisle of choices if you want to change your oil. Take it to your mechanic? How do you know the shop is using the correct oil, absent doing an analysis afterward.
  • 500rwhp500rwhp Posts: 98

    I think I'm beginning to understand your fuel economy issue...12% of your engine hours were spent idling. I drive 90 minutes per day...at your rate, I would be spending almost 11 minutes of that idling. I doubt I spend 5 minutes idling.

    Amen. My 2015 supercrew 3.5EB has similar mileage to yours, but only 45 idle hours. I also average 19.7MPG lifetime for the truck per the computer (which is about 5% optimistic) but the point is that your gas mileage at 0mph is 0. Is it the truck that makes you get bad mileage or is it the roads and driver?
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