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Old 01-22-2015, 09:18 PM   #1
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03 f250

I saw a super clean 03 F250 with the 7.3 diesel, Lariat Crew Cab with 193,000 miles. Looks like a very clean leather interior. Seemed like a decent price. I have no experience with diesel trucks. Dealer was closed. Anything I should know or ask about this particular year and engine? Concerns about the mileage? etc.
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Old 01-22-2015, 09:57 PM   #2
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I've got an 02 4x4 and I will keep it until the truck dies or I do. I love this thing. check all the maint. records if they have them, definitely have a DIESEL mechanic look it over.There are guys that have 500,000 recorded miles on theirs and 193,000 isn't even middle aged. A half decent price is anything UNDER 24K. The 7.3 PSD is arguably the finest motor ford ever put in a truck. Its an International Motor! 12 million Tractors can't be wrong!
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Old 01-22-2015, 09:57 PM   #3
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Since I've seen several go over 1,000,000 miles without anything done to the engine, I'd say they are a good rig. Tranny is a bit weak compared to the TorqShift5 and TorqShift6 and you will probably need ball joints soon. But other than a relatively reasonably priced injector work that may come up they are good trucks. For what you are pulling it's good combo and would likely be good mileage. Parts are still readily available but that could become an issue down the road. Big question is how good the price is and whether you can get the vehicle history. Always a bit of a risk with a 12 year old unit.
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Old 01-22-2015, 10:06 PM   #4
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Also, Diesels are pricey to own and maintain(all brands), but IMO, once u tow heavy with one any distance, you'll never give them up. I've had mine 7 years now, and I think I paid 16k for mine with 113,000 miles on it, before they figured out what they were worth. Now u can't find one for under 20k. thats still in good shape. Don't get dazzled by the leather...... Check out the expensive stuff. (Motor, Trans, etc.)
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Old 01-22-2015, 10:08 PM   #5
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Since I've seen several go over 1,000,000 miles without anything done to the engine, I'd say they are a good rig. Tranny is a bit weak compared to the TorqShift5 and TorqShift6 and you will probably need ball joints soon. But other than a relatively reasonably priced injector work that may come up they are good trucks. For what you are pulling it's good combo and would likely be good mileage. Parts are still readily available but that could become an issue down the road. Big question is how good the price is and whether you can get the vehicle history. Always a bit of a risk with a 12 year old unit.


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Old 01-23-2015, 10:55 AM   #6
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That was the last year with the 7.3 before federal emissions standards required a change to the 6.0. No particulate filters, re-gen, DEF, etc.
Long tested engine that as others have pointed out, are very solid if maintained properly.
All the 7.3 owners I know won't give their trucks up for newer models.
Good luck.
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:50 PM   #7
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The 7.3 is widely regarded as one of the top 5 diesel engines ever made world wide. They were designed to go 350k before rebuild, many have surpassed that. The engine is pretty much bullet proof (unless really abused). The tranny is probably the weakest point, which still ain't bad, and can be replaced fairly cheaply in the whole scheme of things ($3,000). Get a deep tranny pan and a temp gauge installed, put on some after market (deep) overload spring pads (easy job for nearly anyone) and man you should be good to go for quite some time. Also be sure it's a 7.3 some late 03's (I think) came out with the 6.0 now that's a different story.

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Old 01-23-2015, 09:00 PM   #8
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Thanks for the comments. I have not done anything yet. Been working. Stopped after hours cause truck is just so damn perty I was curious. I have heard that the 7.3L is awesome. Price seemed good to me, but checking NADA and KBB for clean retail on like trucks they are still over a couple grand on price, however it does appear to be a super clean truck on body and interior. But have only looked at it night under lights and thru the windows. lol. At 193,000 miles if I could get another 100 or 150,000 miles out of it I would be interested. Can we talk about truck prices on here?
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Old 01-23-2015, 09:03 PM   #9
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Which is better. A 7.3L Ford or 5.9L Cummins like in the Ram?
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Old 01-23-2015, 09:21 PM   #10
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Tim, sounds like a topic.
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Old 01-24-2015, 06:40 AM   #11
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Had a 7.3 and two 6.0's in excursions and two 6.7's in super duties...
of the bunch, the 6.7 is the best engine and tranny SO FAR (only 32k miles on the current one)

The 7.3 was bought back due to tranny issues,
never had an issue out of the 6.0's and HATED to get rid of the idea of my last Excursion... but needed a tow vehicle and the crew cab trucks give me MOST of what I had in the Ex's.
just can't carry around 8 people and their luggage comfortably

My only concern with a 14 or 15 yr old truck is that no matter how good it's taken care of, it's still a 14 or 15 yr old truck
It may be the perfect truck for you, but there's a reason someone traded it in, just do your due diligence and you might have just the bargain...

Those that have them, love them and will NOT give them up !

Either ask the seller to run an Oasis report or get the vin number and go to ford-trucks.com to get an Oasis report - it will show all dealer repairs...

While there you can also look up any recalls or tsb's it might need..

Shop, negotiate HARD to make it worth the risk!
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Old 01-24-2015, 07:12 AM   #12
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Tim D, seriously the 7.3 is on the list of the top 5 ( the list may have been top ten, the more I think about it) ever made world wide. I did not see the cummins 5.9 on the list. However don't get me wrong the 5.9 is a very good power plant.
Johnnyboy has good advice, a 14 year old truck could have a lot of use and abuse. Have it checked out by some one you can trust. It will be loud compared to today's trucks. You'll have to turn it off every time you go thru a drive thru an order food.
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Old 01-24-2015, 07:23 AM   #13
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Uh oh truck wars time. I bought a 2003 F350 with 500,000 miles on it well maintained not a ding on it.I got it back to the lot and three dealers fought over it. By the same token I bought a 650,000 Dodge a year ago same thing. And I have in stock at this point a Crew cab chevy with 300K four wheel drive like new. For me personaly I prefer the Dodge, 6 cylinders the torque curve is flat and starts at 11 RPM where the other two Start at 2100 RPM Alll three are or can be excellent units
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Old 01-24-2015, 07:28 AM   #14
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Can we talk about truck prices on here?
Yes.
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Old 01-24-2015, 08:51 AM   #15
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My only advise would be for you to -- just stand around that thing when it's sitting there idling. If you can stand the smell coming from that exhaust, then maybe investigate further. IMO that engine has the most rotten putrid exhaust of anything on the road.
My 03 Duramax was bad, but it couldn't hold a candle to the 7.3.
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Old 01-24-2015, 09:10 AM   #16
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Also pull the oil fill cap and check for blow by. All of those old 7.3 had some I steer away from those that have none, By the same token on a 6.0 if it has blow by run
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Old 01-24-2015, 05:35 PM   #17
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Thanks for all the info. Was unable to get an oasis report online. Did find out it was a turbo. Which did bring it in line with NADA and what they are asking. It will probably be thur or fri before I can get there again.
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Old 01-26-2015, 12:08 PM   #18
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Get a deep tranny pan and a temp gauge installed, put on some after market (deep) overload spring pads (easy job for nearly anyone) and man you should be good to go for quite some time. Also be sure it's a 7.3 some late 03's (I think) came out with the 6.0 now that's a different story.

Flyone
You will find one the best things you can do for the 4R100 tranny in that truck is to change out the tranny cooler for a newer 6.0 version. Heats the worst enemy of a tranny and this cooler really helps this issue.

Also, Flyone is correct in that Ford changed engines mid year with these trucks so they have both 7.3's in the early production and 6.0's in the later units.

I would be very careful with the 03/04 6.0 engines as they needed some serious upgrades to the high pressure oil pumps and egr/oil coolers, etc.
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Old 01-26-2015, 08:04 PM   #19
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r2millers is correct--heat is THE big problem in the 4R100 tranny. I installed the Deraile (spelling may not be correct) deep cooling pan--it has about 6, 5/8 inch tubes running thru the pan and out from front to back as you are moving air goes thru the tubes to cool the fluid down. It does a great job and has no moving parts (no pump) to break down. The tubes are fluted to turn the air over as it passes thru them. not towing my tranny temp at highway speed runs around 100 degrees F, while towing it may get up to a whopping 126 degrees F. It warms up a bit when stopped for stoplights but cools back down when you get rolling again.
If I remember right I paid $126 dollars for it. A highly recommend mod along with a little temp gauge (the pan is pre drilled for temp probe).
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Old 01-28-2015, 09:06 PM   #20
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Well...truck is no longer available. They were asking $16,800. Had a feeling it wouldn't last long. Thanks everyone for the advice.
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