Overheating ecoboost when towing - Page 6 - F150online Forums

Go Back  F150online Forums > Special Interest > Towing & Hauling
Overheating ecoboost when towing >

Overheating ecoboost when towing

Towing & Hauling

Overheating ecoboost when towing

  #76  
Old 07-11-2018, 10:18 AM
JackandJanet's Avatar
Global Moderator &
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Among javelinas and scorpions in Zoniestan
Posts: 7,078
Thanks, sublime. It sounds like your truck was just about to go into limp mode then. And as soon as you topped the grade, the load on the engine went down and the ECM decided it didn't need to do that. Clearly, it was not an actual overheat, because that won't drop off so quickly.

Someone else posted that the ECM is supposed to enrich the mixture under these conditions which will help things. I wonder if there's an ECM flash that your truck might benefit from?

- Jack
 
  #77  
Old 07-16-2018, 11:20 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Idaho
Posts: 9
I pulled over horseshoe bend hill last week. Unfortunately the full race radiator didn't really help anything. It cools off really quick but it still went into limp mode. It was in the upper 90's so it was hot. I am at a loss of what to do. I have the new radiator, the new intercooler, I have a larger tranny cooler on order as my transmission has started to heat up recently. I love the power of these trucks but they can't handle the heat. I've been thinking of getting a widsheild washer pump and setting up a sprayer nozzle in front of the radiator to see if that will cool it over the steep grades .
 

Last edited by basecamp; 07-16-2018 at 11:44 AM.
  #78  
Old 07-16-2018, 01:44 PM
Technical Article Contributor
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Vernon, NY
Posts: 8,216
Get some liquid nitrogen and have it spray at the radiator. That'll cool it.
 
  #79  
Old 07-17-2018, 10:12 AM
JackandJanet's Avatar
Global Moderator &
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Among javelinas and scorpions in Zoniestan
Posts: 7,078
Basecamp, I'll say it again - your truck is NOT overheating. The problem is in the programming of the ECM. It is seeing the high load condition for a prolonged time and is putting the engine into limp mode to force you to reduce that load. Since it's not overheating, bigger radiators, and other cooling methods will not help.

I think you should consult with a dealer you trust and see if there's an ECM flash that would correct this.

- Jack
 
  #80  
Old 07-23-2018, 11:40 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Idaho
Posts: 9
Jack, thank you for your response. I must have missed it before if you replied that it is a prolonged load issue. I have and OBD II monitor that I just got working again so I can watch my temps much better now. I will give it a pull over the hill one more time and see what the actual engine temps reach.

Have you seen any one have luck with a reflash of the computer to fix the overheat issue? That would be awesome if that is all it is. Couple thousand dollars late in figuring it out but would be awesome if that is the fix.
 
  #81  
Old 07-23-2018, 02:18 PM
JackandJanet's Avatar
Global Moderator &
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Among javelinas and scorpions in Zoniestan
Posts: 7,078
Basecamp, I haven't read anything about anyone having success in stopping the "limp mode" issue after an ECM flash, but that doesn't mean anything. Most folks don't follow up with a report on a fix to their problems, especially if the fix involves something that points out their diagnoses was wrong.

So, I applaud your use of the OBD monitor to read the actual engine temp. I'd advise you to read the Cylinder Head Temperature and not the Coolant Temperature if that is possible. There is NO actual coolant temperature sensor in the engine - it is inferred by the ECM from the cylinder head temperature which IS monitored by a sensor. A coolant temp sensor has a big weakness in that it will not read the temperature accurately if the coolant boils or drains out.

So, I'd try to get to the actual source.

If you find, as I suspect, that the engine is not overheating, it would not hurt to ask the Service Advisor at your dealership (if you trust him or her) about an ECM flash to correct the problem. It has been happening for such a long time now in so many model year engines with the Ecoboost that I can't believe there is not a service bulletin out on it.

Let us know what you find out.

- Jack
 
  #82  
Old 07-23-2018, 03:00 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Idaho
Posts: 9
Thanks so much Jack, I have it all tore apart because of a leak in the full race radiator. They sent me a new one that I hope to get it all back together this weekend. I will follow up after I get it put back together and pull up the hill again. Thank you so much for your help. I have really wondered since I have never had a boil over issue just "limp mode".
 
  #83  
Old 07-23-2018, 05:46 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 6
2016 F150 Ecoboost Overheating while pulling up a moutain

Originally Posted by JackandJanet View Post
Basecamp, I haven't read anything about anyone having success in stopping the "limp mode" issue after an ECM flash, but that doesn't mean anything. Most folks don't follow up with a report on a fix to their problems, especially if the fix involves something that points out their diagnoses was wrong.

So, I applaud your use of the OBD monitor to read the actual engine temp. I'd advise you to read the Cylinder Head Temperature and not the Coolant Temperature if that is possible. There is NO actual coolant temperature sensor in the engine - it is inferred by the ECM from the cylinder head temperature which IS monitored by a sensor. A coolant temp sensor has a big weakness in that it will not read the temperature accurately if the coolant boils or drains out.

So, I'd try to get to the actual source.

If you find, as I suspect, that the engine is not overheating, it would not hurt to ask the Service Advisor at your dealership (if you trust him or her) about an ECM flash to correct the problem. It has been happening for such a long time now in so many model year engines with the Ecoboost that I can't believe there is not a service bulletin out on it.

Let us know what you find out.

- Jack
Hey All,
I have a 2016 SuperCrew Ecoboost 4x4 KR pulling a 31' TT weighing around 7500-8000 loaded. On flat ground, I have no issues whatsoever. I pulled from OK to CO Springs via Raton and the engine temp climbed. The 2016 models show the temp number above the gauge once it gets above 230, so I watched it go up and up. I made it to the top just as it hit 250F and cut power then the truck rapidly cooled off going down. That was using 91 octane in T/H mode. After reading the mountain woe threads on here, I manually shifted on the way back over. That helped a lot, but still got to 247F before the top. It is crazy how quickly it will heat up and cool down. The engine still had plenty of power, but just could not use it because of the overheating. I did not turn off AC and I should have. Have there been any updates from Ford on this issue? It sure seems like the air passing over the inter cooler with the turbos are pumping is overheating the radiator. I sure thought my issue in the mountains would be going down not up!

Thanks for any insight,
 
  #84  
Old 07-24-2018, 11:26 AM
JackandJanet's Avatar
Global Moderator &
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Among javelinas and scorpions in Zoniestan
Posts: 7,078
brdvpra - welcome to the forum! Your experience actually sounds different than basecamp's. From what you are saying, your coolant temperature increased smoothly as you continued the climb, and the engine didn't suddenly go into limp mode (or perhaps it did when the temperature reached 250, which would make sense.) Basecamp's symptom is a temperature gauge that suddenly moves to full hot and the engine goes into limp. This is an ECM controlled function.

Your experience sounds like a smooth overheating issue pulling a heavy load up Raton (I've driven that route many times, and I know it can put a bit of stress on a truck that is towing something.) In your case, I think you were seeing the actual effect of the heavy load on the engine and the ECM was not being overly proactive to get you to reduce that stressful situation. This tells me Ford has fixed the problem that basecamp and others have had in the earlier models. Your truck CAN pull an 8000# trailer, but it WILL be hard on the engine pulling up a long, steep grade like Raton.

As I recall, the grade going south into New Mexico is somewhat less than the grade climbing up going north, so that may account for the somewhat lower temperature on that leg. Yes, if you're pulling that trailer up a grade like that, turn the AC off.

It will run hotter going up because you are burning much more fuel, making more heat. Going down, you're just coasting, burning about the same amount of fuel you would at idle.

- Jack
 
  #85  
Old 07-24-2018, 12:13 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 6
Hey Jack,
Thanks for the welcome and the info! I will say the gauge did not move until it hit 250F then it showed hot all of a sudden. The actual temp numbers appeared at 230F and then go away when it cools to 225F. The gauge did not climb with the numbers. That being said, I'm not so sure that it is not the same problem since my gauge was not moving either.

It is totally crazy how fast it cools down when the load is removed. I have never had one cool down that fast once they get hot. I'm talking within 1.5 minutes it is back to 225F. That makes me wonder if the sensor is in the direct path of the intercooler hot air or something. Like maybe the actual coolant is not that hot maybe? It was so frustrating to still have plenty of throttle and power and not be able to use it up the hill because it generated to much heat. The southbound trip is not as step but the ambient temps were 10 degrees higher 95F compared to 85F. The oil temp stayed just over half way and the trans temp never reached half way at any point.

I experimented a lot on the way home and manually shifting the transmission is the way to go in general with towing a heavy load. It seems like 3rd and 4th are the gears to use unless it is just totally flat then 5th was OK. I could control the boost which controlled the heat. Keeping the engine at 3K or just above was getting better gas mileage. You could watch the instant mpg meter rise 3 to 4 mpg once it was down shifted.

By the way,
I didn't research the Royal Gorge well enough and we pulled the camper to the top of it as well. While it was not a long pull it was pretty steep. The truck had no issues with temps on that pull because we were only going 20 ish. The point I want to make was we used the Hill Decent Mode on the way down. That mode rocks below 20mph. It kept the truck and trailer below 20mph all the way down. I'm not joking when I say I touched the brakes twice because of a switch backs.

I just wish there was a way to keep it cool because there is plenty of power there. I sure thought my issues would have been going down the mountain not up!
 
  #86  
Old 07-25-2018, 11:17 AM
JackandJanet's Avatar
Global Moderator &
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Among javelinas and scorpions in Zoniestan
Posts: 7,078
Thanks, brdvpra - your last post tells me the gauge is still just a somewhat worthless, "feelgood", idiot pointer. If the engine is running and has warmed up, it shows midpoint (or an OK reading) but is not showing anything resembling the actual temperature. The rapid rise when the digital readout hit 250 was an ECM controlled function that told you it was going into limp mode. The ECM is supposed to provide a somewhat richer fuel mixture when the engine is under load, which helps cool things. It may not be doing that properly in the earlier model trucks, which is what makes me suggest there may be an ECM flash.

But, you were pulling a VERY heavy load up Raton! I would not be surprised to learn that your engine was getting hot for real. I think your truck is operating nearly at its limits in that situation. Going down, you're hardly producing any heat from combustion and your fans are going to be blowing at full speed. I'd attribute the rapid cooling to having electric fans that are not governed by engine speed and good engineering.

Again, the temperature you are seeing is not actually the coolant temperature. It MAY be an "inferred" coolant temperature, but the sensor is reading Cylinder Head Temperature, which is not effected by low coolant or coolant overheating. But, since you were seeing a smooth, steady rise during the heavy load period, you were experiencing actual engine overheating. It will be interesting to learn what basecamp sees using the OBD monitor when he pulls his similar load under similar conditions.

As I've posted in another thread, when I've pulled my 3500# trailer up long, 7% grades in Arizona at near 100 degree temperatures, my actual CHT did not go up according to my OBD readout. And, my transmission temperature did not change at all. My old 2005 5.4L V8 temperatures always went up significantly during similar contitions. Of course I'm not putting nearly as much stress on things as you and basecamp are, but the little Ecoboost engine is much more suited to hard work.

Still, the rapid recovery everyone has been experiencing may have been fooling me and I may have to eat my words regarding my doubts about overheating. It may indeed be caused by pulling a load at close to weight limits up steep grades. If so, the only solution (if a bigger radiator is no help) would be a SuperDuty class truck. Your posting of the actual temperatures has been very helpful. Thanks again!

- Jack
 
  #87  
Old 07-26-2018, 02:12 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 6
Hey Jack,
Thanks again for the great input. I am new to pulling in the mountains, so I wasn't sure if Raton is considered easy, medium, or hard, etc. It just stinks to have so much more power that you can't use. I was literally slowing the engine down instead of flooring it like I would have thought. Unless, Ford can figure out how to get rid of the heat I think you are spot on the SuperDuty class :-( I just dread the added up keep and expense for an annual trips, etc. I guess I could just rent a SuperDuty for those pulls!
 
  #88  
Old 07-29-2018, 11:05 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Idaho
Posts: 9
Hey all,
What a crazy serious of events this week.I installed my new full race radiator and bought a new set of cooling fans off of Ebay. I put them on and almost made it to the bottom of the mountain when the fan blade separated from the motor. I heard a funny clunk and thought I hit something on the road. Then I watched temps climb rapidly on my phone with the Torque app. I was pulling in the 210 range then bam up it went. Had to drive home 40 miles with the heater blowing full hot and the windows down in 99 degree weather.
So went to autozone and bought another fan assembly. It made it about 10 miles and started to blow fuses and up went the temps again. Finally today I put the stock fan assembly with the trimmed shroud that I had to trim to make it fit the original full race radiator and it worked just fine. I went and pulled the hill again. My truck is the max tow so I think the fans are different than the standard tow package, hence the issue with all the fans. Watching my temps it pulled on flat ground about 215 to 220 depending on hills. As I climbed it slowly worked it's way up. Pulled the lower part at about 226 then moved up to 235, of coarse at 230 the needle started to move. It got all the way up to 248 when I topped the hill so no limp mode but it was knocking on the door. Today was a little cooler at only 95 degrees out as apposed to last time I pulled it was over 100. The radiator helped but I just don't think they make anything that can dissipate the heat these turbos build. I have a 2016 Expedition that when pulling my travel trailer still warms up. It has never gone into limp mode but the gauge was right at the top. I wish the superduty was in the budget but not for a few years. I love my truck I just wish they would have engineered the cooling system to handle heat these things create.
 
  #89  
Old 07-30-2018, 10:31 AM
JackandJanet's Avatar
Global Moderator &
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Among javelinas and scorpions in Zoniestan
Posts: 7,078
Basecamp, I appreciate your frustration, and wish I had a good solution for you.

I felt the same way about my old 2005 King Ranch's towing ability when I could just barely pull my 3500# trailer with it. I was in 1st gear all the way and things were getting pretty hot. Of course it was up a 13% grade in Utah to Cedar Breaks National Monument and there's a sign at the foot of the grade that warns against towing trailers up that climb, but still...!

I'm trying to make a point here, Our trucks have a pretty high towing rating, but that rating is determined for towing over average terrain with an occasional uphill grade that's not too severe. You're trying to pull an 8000# trailer, as I recall, up a pretty serious, long grade. I know you would not have made it up the grade to Cedar Breaks. There's a reasonable limit to what our trucks can do. If you are pushing the weight limits on towing, you can't reasonably expect the truck to handle extraordinary grades with ease. I don't know that you can blame it on the turbos either. I suspect the unblown 5.0L V8 would be having the same trouble if it were subjected to the stress you are putting on your truck.

I'm sorry it's taken me so long to come to this realization and to post this opinion. I've been fooled by the postings of "sudden climbs in temperature" and "limp mode", followed by "sudden cool down if the engine was cut off", which made me think it was an ECM reaction to load, rather than an actual buildup of heat. The actual monitoring of temperature has made me rethink this, and I appreciate your letting us know what your temps were.

So, now I'm of the opinion that if you have to tow a heavy trailer up steep grades often, you need a Super Duty class truck to do it easily. You can still do it with what you have, of course, but you're going to have to "baby things" a bit.

- Jack
 

Last edited by JackandJanet; 07-30-2018 at 10:34 AM.
  #90  
Old 07-30-2018, 11:42 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 3
Hello all. I an new to the forum and I have a 2013 Ecoboost F150. It's got the towing pkg with the 3.73 gears and extended run fuel tank. I live in New England and for a hobby collect and restore antique tractors. I recently took a trip I take all the time and the engine temp never gets real hot but on the way home, I was pushing it a bit and I have to agree, the harder you work the truck, the more heat you generate. The load capacity is 11,600lbs. My trailer is a 24ft. deck over and I have in the pic a 1952 John Deere model B and 1950's john Deere M. Along with that, my camping kit and weights I dress the tractors with when pulling. I took it to the local CAT scales near me before this trip and I am when loaded at 11,600lbs to the ounce.

I have friends that pull their machines with three quarter and one tons. The ride you get in the 150 however is King compared to the others. I have had SCT Livewire make some tunes for the tuner I have specifically for towing, and I have rear air bags on the rear end. I use 93 octane at all times, synthetic oils and keep after it regarding maintenance. When towing I'll average 11 MPG when I don't work it hard. Usually my trips with this much weight are 30 to 40 miles, not 160 miles but there is that one show I won't miss. LOL. I have had other brands of half tons before and a three quarter ton before and they all struggled. I've tried the load combo I have on a one ton and three quarter and the ride honestly sucks which is why I went the 150 route.

It's a well built truck with some flaws. Heat is the biggest. I have warped and replaced the exhaust manifolds once and am considering changing the radiator to the larger aluminum one available from Stage 3 Motorsports and I think my truck will keep a little cooler under the hood. Thanks for the good reads guys.

Jack
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: Overheating ecoboost when towing


Sponsors

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

© 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: