Cut Open Pics - Motorcraft FL-500-S with 5k miles / 1-year

Joined
Sep 12, 2002
Messages
2,257
Location
SE MI
I ran this FL-500-S for about 1 year with my 2018 Ford Explorer XLT AWD / 3.5L N/A V6, ran it almost 5k miles. Oil was Idemitsu 0W-20. I got a bunch of 5 qt jugs of Idemitsu xW-20 and xW-30 for free, so I might as well use it up. Fuel used was mainly Top Tier Costco 87/93 octane fuel. Driving was mixed freeway/city, with plenty of WOT sessions. Only one of the pleats looked "warped". The rest of the pleats looked fine, and I couldn't find any noticeable metal shavings or debris, nor could I identify any torn pleats. Off-topic commentary: My lease for this Explorer is coming up at the end of this year. I'd keep it, except for the potential internal water pump failure, and the bad PTU/transfer-case design. With my annual driving mileage, I would hit the danger zone for the water pump failure in a few more years. I do not want to tear apart the front timing cover to replace it (does not look fun, I don't want to spend 12 hours of my timing with this) and I do not want to pay a shop $2000 to replace it. I can handle the gear oil bath with replacing the PTU 75W-140 every 30k miles, it's not fun but it is do-able especially with all the room under the Explorer. The Explorer has not given me any real problems, other than weird shifting with the 6F55, and the severe lack of power from this engine. It is surprisingly leak-free underneath the car. PTU, axle half-shafts, oil pan, and trans are completely dry. The factory equipped Michelin Latitude Tour HP 245/60R18 tires are absolutely amazing. They ride great, are quiet, treadwear seems fine at this mileage, and punch through floods, rain, and snow/ice with the greatest of ease. The Explorer is about 4800 lb, and doesn't hydroplane in the rain or slush. I've gone through potholes that would have eaten my Fusion Sport's 235/40R19 factory tires and wheels for lunch, and with the Explorer it felt like a Stryker driving through a 4 foot ditch - hardly noticeable. The leading edge of the hood on the Explorer has noticeable corrosion. The paint is bubbling and peeling, with lots of aluminum oxide seeping out in multiple spots. I hear there is a special 5-year corrosion warranty that will cover this, as Ford has to replace the entire hood and not just repaint it. The right rear door panel is misaligned (sticks out) - which is a common problem. The right rear part of the roof rack keeps popping loose, but I solved this 2 years ago by heating the panel and remolding it so it makes contact with all the clips (common problem among 16-19 Explorers). Ford's solution is to use a bolt/screw with RTV adhesive. Mine has held on solid for 2 years. I love the factory LED low-beams. IIHS shows they are very bright, and I can attest that these are probably the best factory headlights on any car I've owned and driven. I don't even have LED foglights on this Explorer and they light up the peripheral areas and the ground just fine. I have the LED foglights on my 2017 Fusion Sport (Same ones as the Explorer had I gotten them) and they are wortheless except for the extra peripheral lighting and the 6 inches in front of the car. The HIDs on my SHO were garbage, as are the LED high/lows on the Fusion Sport. They don't light up enough of the road in front to spot potholes in bad weather (as an example). As a comparison, my 2017 Fusion Sport has a sheen of trans fluid under the same 6F55, with engine oil seeping from the plastic oil pan/RTV sealing, and has gear oil around the half-shafts and PTU. One time during the summer, the entire right side of the underbody, from the engine compartment all the way to the exhaust tips and the wheel wells, were covered in some kind of oil. It did not reek of onions, so it wasn't gear oil from the RDU or PTU. It was too dark to be ATF (Mercon LV is almost clear these days). My guess it was engine oil, but I checked the dipstick and couldn't detect a leak. It has not done this again.

20200308_140303.jpg


20200308_140319.jpg


20200308_140325.jpg


20200308_140336.jpg


20200308_140350.jpg
 

Job

Joined
Dec 4, 2018
Messages
3,028
Location
USA
A lot of vehicles have water pumps under the timing cover. Years ago I did the Honda Accord and two different year Camrys in the driveway. No fun. Filter looks great, especially with lots of WOT.
 
Joined
Oct 9, 2004
Messages
12,850
Location
Cincinnati, OH, USA
Glued seam MC/Puro FTW (as usual)! Wish there was a way to tell which construction it had without cutting it open! You're doing the right thing turning it in when the lease is up, Exploders scare me.
 

ZeeOSix

$100 site donor 2022
Joined
Jul 22, 2010
Messages
34,363
Location
PNW
The FL500S filters always look pretty decent in C&Ps. The FL820S, no so much. Thanks for the report.
 

metroplex

Thread starter
Joined
Sep 12, 2002
Messages
2,257
Location
SE MI
Originally Posted by Farnsworth
A lot of vehicles have water pumps under the timing cover. Years ago I did the Honda Accord and two different year Camrys in the driveway. No fun. Filter looks great, especially with lots of WOT.
I understand that. GM's done that with a lot of their Ecotec engines but I've never heard of their internal water pumps sending coolant into the engine and destroying it (no visible signs of coolant leaks outside the engine). As for the PTUs, I know a few people personally that have had their PTU's leak/grenade at under 50k miles on their Edge/Explorer.
 

Job

Joined
Dec 4, 2018
Messages
3,028
Location
USA
Originally Posted by metroplex
Originally Posted by Farnsworth
A lot of vehicles have water pumps under the timing cover. Years ago I did the Honda Accord and two different year Camrys in the driveway. No fun. Filter looks great, especially with lots of WOT.
I understand that. GM's done that with a lot of their Ecotec engines but I've never heard of their internal water pumps sending coolant into the engine and destroying it (no visible signs of coolant leaks outside the engine). As for the PTUs, I know a few people personally that have had their PTU's leak/grenade at under 50k miles on their Edge/Explorer.
I know you understand that. Just want to point out it isn't unusual only to Ford to put it there. What part of the Ford pump is leaking into the engine? Most pumps have an inlet from the radiator and an outlet to the engine.
 
Joined
Mar 12, 2015
Messages
22,271
Location
In the shop
Hey Farnsworth or i should say "goodtimes" relax already. If you cant understand Fords water pumps leaking on the explorers then dont comment. I work on Fords so I know.
 
Last edited:

ZeeOSix

$100 site donor 2022
Joined
Jul 22, 2010
Messages
34,363
Location
PNW
Originally Posted by metroplex
Originally Posted by Farnsworth
A lot of vehicles have water pumps under the timing cover. Years ago I did the Honda Accord and two different year Camrys in the driveway. No fun. Filter looks great, especially with lots of WOT.
I understand that. GM's done that with a lot of their Ecotec engines but I've never heard of their internal water pumps sending coolant into the engine and destroying it (no visible signs of coolant leaks outside the engine). As for the PTUs, I know a few people personally that have had their PTU's leak/grenade at under 50k miles on their Edge/Explorer.
Putting a water pump inside the engine is an engineering fail (coolant leaks into the oil if the pump leaks - neat). Potential disaster, not to mention a nightmare and expensive to repair. I had a Nissan V6 with that design, but didn't keep it long enough to find out how reliable the water pump was.
 
Joined
Oct 17, 2014
Messages
2,236
Location
SW Ontario Canada
I think your concern about the water pump is, perhaps, overblown. I replaced mine on our 2009 Flex, at 206,000km and it wasn't leaking...in fact the old pump looked and felt not much different than the new one I installed. I see the newer 3.5's have a double row chain drive, as to whether this improves the longevity of the water pump is TBD. Thanks for the c&p
 

Job

Joined
Dec 4, 2018
Messages
3,028
Location
USA
Looking at the back of the pump what is so different here? Two locating pins, 8 bolts and a gasket. Maybe this is the wrong one. https://www.rockauto.com/en/moreinfo.php?pk=7508444&cc=3440434&jsn=10545 Here is a Camry wp, which is inside the timing cover driven by a timing belt. https://www.rockauto.com/en/moreinfo.php?pk=3252696&cc=1429770&jsn=10809 Is the leak into the engine on the Ford further in somewhere in the cooling circuit? Because these are about the same idea as far as just the pump goes.
 
Joined
Mar 20, 2016
Messages
3,514
Location
Western S.C.
Originally Posted by Farnsworth
... Here is a Camry wp, which is inside the timing cover driven by a timing belt. ...
Do you suppose a water pump which is inside the timing cover driven by a chain might have different implications, in case of pump leakage? The chain is lubricated by engine oil, so ...
 

ZeeOSix

$100 site donor 2022
Joined
Jul 22, 2010
Messages
34,363
Location
PNW
A coolant leak into the oil is bad regardless of how it gets there. All water pumps located inside the engine have the possibility of leaking at the impeller seal or gasket and contaminating the oil with coolant. That's why they are a bad idea. I can't even think of a good reason to mount a water pump inside the engine except to get rid of an external drive belt or save some space on the outside of the engine - is it worth that?
 
Joined
Aug 12, 2013
Messages
1,232
Location
Alberta
The Camry pump sits in the area of the timing belt, away from theand engine internals. On the explorer it sits inside the chain driven timing system, right in the oil bath. If it leaks on the Camry, you may need to replace the timing belt. if it leaks in the explorer, it dilutes the oil and destroys the engine...that can't happen in the Camry. Pictures in this thread: https://www.bobistheoilguy.com/foru.../re-ford-edge-2-0-2-7-or-3-5#Post5369907
 
Last edited:
Joined
Mar 20, 2015
Messages
10,558
Location
Virginia
Originally Posted by Sayjac
Looks ok to me. Excepting the 820, fairly typical of post use MC anecdotes posted this subforum. Thanks for c&p.
Exactly right ^^^^^^^^^^ Only the 820s seemingly have any trouble it seems.
 

Job

Joined
Dec 4, 2018
Messages
3,028
Location
USA
Originally Posted by tcp71
The Camry pump sits in the area of the timing belt, away from theand engine internals. On the explorer it sits inside the chain driven timing system, right in the oil bath. If it leaks on the Camry, you may need to replace the timing belt. if it leaks in the explorer, it dilutes the oil and destroys the engine...that can't happen in the Camry. Pictures in this thread: https://www.bobistheoilguy.com/foru.../re-ford-edge-2-0-2-7-or-3-5#Post5369907
Very good. The you tube within that thread is also very good. There is a slot in the water pump shown in second video so if it leaks there will be coolant appearing on the outside of the block. The guy says it comes out by the alternator as a warning first. That's something to watch for before it gets into the oil. That wasn't so hard to learn.
 

metroplex

Thread starter
Joined
Sep 12, 2002
Messages
2,257
Location
SE MI
I still have a few FL-820-S, and one that is on my dad's E-250 5.4L 2V V8. When he changes the oil I'll try to cut open that filter.
 

metroplex

Thread starter
Joined
Sep 12, 2002
Messages
2,257
Location
SE MI
Originally Posted by Farnsworth
Originally Posted by tcp71
The Camry pump sits in the area of the timing belt, away from theand engine internals. On the explorer it sits inside the chain driven timing system, right in the oil bath. If it leaks on the Camry, you may need to replace the timing belt. if it leaks in the explorer, it dilutes the oil and destroys the engine...that can't happen in the Camry. Pictures in this thread: https://www.bobistheoilguy.com/foru.../re-ford-edge-2-0-2-7-or-3-5#Post5369907
Very good. The you tube within that thread is also very good. There is a slot in the water pump shown in second video so if it leaks there will be coolant appearing on the outside of the block. The guy says it comes out by the alternator as a warning first. That's something to watch for before it gets into the oil. That wasn't so hard to learn.
There are just as many people that never saw a single drop come out of the weep hole and had a failed engine as a result. Here's an interesting video showing what the water pump design looks like as they water jetted them in half: https://youtu.be/yrmH4S2_ZOI They basically have 2 failure modes. One is via the weep hole if you're lucky. The other is very bad.
 
Top