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  1. #1

    Default 1996 Ford F250 460 E4OD Problems

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Size:  147.4 KBWe recently bought a 1996 F250 with a 460 and E4OD.

    The truck came from an older gentleman in western Iowa in the Council Bluffs area. It was bought new to pull a gooseneck camper but it hasnít seen one behind it in a very long time. It hasnt been driven much in a while either.

    the PO said it has fresh new plugs, a new distributor cap, and rotor. Looking them over it appears to be true

    We noticed when we switched from the front to the rear tank on the test drive that it stunk of old gas being burned but the truck ran good on the test drive on both tanks, etc. No stumbles or lack of power, etc.

    Brought the truck home and added Seafoam to the engine oil and front tank to start cleaning stuff up with it. within 150 miles it has started acting up. Once the front tank was mostly gone and we switched to the rear, almost immediately, no power, etc. when you get to more than about 1/3 throttle the truck would pop out the intake tract and sputters and doesnít make any power.

    My son was driving it and said it really honestly just wouldnít get out of its own damn way. It wouldnít go up hills, etc. He filled the front tank with fresh fuel and it didnít make much difference at all.

    When I drove it again the truck acted like thereís no advance on the base timing and no advance on the spark map.

    After fiddling we found a loose timing advance stub over by the ignition module.

    After checking things with a timing light it appeares sonewhwre along the way some idiot timed it without pulling the advance first. It was 10 with the stub and ran like crap.

    The moment I pulled the advance it was at about 4 degrees BTDC on the timing light. I set the advance properly with the spout removed but dialed it up to 12 degrees BTDC and put the stub back it. Timing jumped up with the spout in like it should and it goes up as you rev it.

    By comparing to how the mustangs add timing with the spout out and also looking at the 460 I discovered timing wasnít climbing any faster on advance with the spout vs without on the 460. We were just seeing more base advance but then nothing more than mechanical. Stick electronic advance? Maybe

    I hooked up a volt meter and the TPS was all over the place. Flat spots, etc.

    I added a new TPS which it obviously needed and it helped but it didnít cure the run problems. Timing was still mia.

    This is when I figured out things look corroded in the distributor and the dizzy was getting stuck as advance was being called for so it wasnít moving.

    it ran better but NOTHING like a truck with a 460 should. An inline 6 would pass this truckblike itís tied to a stump.

    I bought a new distributor for it and installed it earlier today. Still It doesnít run how a 7.5L should at all on either tank.

    I know we need to solve the problem with bad fuel in the rear tank but that doesnít explain the crappy performance with the fresh fuel in the front tank

    Where Iím at with it is finish doing routine maintenance things for starters.

    Treat and burn the bad gas in the rear tank or get it out of the tank
    change the fuel filters
    Service the transmission fluid and filter
    Service the cooling system
    change oil

    Iím grasping at straws and donít know where to go next for sure.

    It doesnít show any codes and the check engine is not on

    the truck is an EEC-IV with Speed Density EFI.

    it runs about like the map has had a diaphragm fail but that should show codes

    i plan to inspect looking for broken vacuum lines, or a MIA line by the map sensor, etc.

    also measure fuel pressure too

    If this comes up with nothing Iíll drop the tanks and check the fuel pumps and socks and pump to hanger rubber hose, etc.

    not opposed to throwing an ECU at the problem if there arenít ways to rule it out

    I am looking for additional ideas

    The truck did get nearly 18 MPG being ran on the interstate at 80 for 80 miles. This points to lack of fuel delivery or fuel map troubles as most 460ís in the mid 90ís are known to get about 8-10 city and 12-14 highway.

    it is running hot which also points to being lean.
    Last edited by erratic50; 05-29-2018 at 09:39 AM.

  2. #2
    FEP Senior Member dagenham's Avatar
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    If there's old gas in it I'd be looking at the fuel filters to be gummed up maybe. The fact the po had thrown some new parts on tells me he was already having problems and couldn't fix it either.

  3. #3
    FEP Supporter Broncojunkie's Avatar
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    Those trucks with dual tanks had an issue with one of the pumps cross-filling from one tank to the other. It's been a while since I had one, so you may want to do some reading over on the f150 forum. But basically, I'm suggesting that you very well may have bad fuel in both tanks. One of the pumps is equipped with a check valve. That's the one that causes problems. Seems to me like it's the front one, but don't take my word for it. The fact that you were getting 18 mpg makes me suspect a cross-fill problem, though. My 92 f150 with 302 didn't do that well, I don't think!

  4. #4

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    Agreed - my 5.4L in my 2008 truck wonít break 17 with a tailwind at 80, not even with a hypertech tune.

    I may top off both tanks then run some miles on the back tank again then top off both again to see where itís at.

    I remember my dadís 83 van and dual tanks ó once it got older loved to draw from both tanks then when the front went empty you were out of gas.... switchover valve would stick. We eventually bypassed the front tank entirely on that one.

    One of the oddball behaviors Iím seeing is the rear tank builds with pressure. Not a ton and no different than our Mustangs but when I removed the cap to put in some additives it put some fuel on the ground. I chalked it up to being 70 when I filled and 105 when I removed the cap.

    I have a fuel pressure gauge. I may check the rail for starters. The bad part is Iíd have to remove the hood to get where I could see a gauge while itís acting up. Might cure the getting hot ó road kill style.

    At least I know the TPS and distributor are both good. The jury is out on everything else. I do really like the ol truck, it just needs to cooperate.

    I highly doubt we'll do anything in the form of rust repair or anything on the truck. Its sorta too bad. It was either garaged most of its life or it got plenty of wax or a respray sometime given the way the paint looks.

    The dash is cracked but other than that the interior is surprisingly nice. And I mean in general, not just for an older truck. I dont remember the last time I've seen an interior in one of these trucks that's this nice -- its been a long while.

    It seals up good going down the road, AC will freeze you out, the heat works, the cruise works, etc.

    It doesn't ever seem to smoke or drip or leak anything, etc.

    Just a damn nice truck if we can get performance where it should be.

    It needs to get there because towing capacity is why I bought the truck. It will be making the run to Austin to get one 85 Saleen once its done. Its also going to make the run to SCOA and some others.

    The old 460's are stout when they run right. People always talk about engines making this much or that much power, and never how many RPM they run to do it. That's where the big block and diesel and turbo diesel conversation is.

    For the 1996 460, they are making 490 lbs of torque and they make 85% of it by 1800 RPM on 87 octane pump gas.

    Meanwhile it takes my 5.4L until about 4300 RPM to make 405 lbs of torque on 93 octane premium fuel with a KN airfilter combined with a special hypertech tune that takes advantage of it. Thats all a 5.4L will muster -- set on kill.

    What exactly will the old 7.5 with E4OD or 5-speed actually pull? Who the heck really knows actually, right. We've all heard stories of crazy porta-scale readings for being VASTLY over weight in addition to 20-30 over on speed limit yet too. The thing about the stories I know about, I read some of them in the area's courthouse news. Examples of what NOT to do for sure!

    Pretty much why I picked up a 7.5L truck for a tow rig. Enough of the modular or small block drama.

    I might eventually put expansion tubes and true some duals on this truck for fun. Something to make the growl of the 460 heard. Or maybe go nuts with high flow cats, long-tube headers, and glass packs. Done right, these old trucks sound exactly like the 60's and 70's and 80's V8s we all remember because its one of the trucks Ford hadn't gotten around to changing really.

    I don't mean 5.0L mustang growl. I mean 400M and 429 and 460 V8 truck growl. Its just something you don't hear very often anymore, and they all sounded more or less the same.
    Last edited by erratic50; 05-29-2018 at 10:40 AM.

  5. #5

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    I have a 96 F 250 460/E40D since new. If you haven't changed the fuel filter DO IT. Few different times even though based on miles mine wouldn't get out of its own way. No code. Change the filter and back in business. I've had vacuum leaks twice. both time it threw a code. They are not fast but pulls real strong. I get 17 mph on hwy (16 w/ac on) 10 to 8 in town depending on whether its Qtip season or not. fuel transfer between tanks takes fuel pumps to stop. has to do with check valves in the assm. for what its worth

  6. #6

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    Thanks for the post! Fuel filter is the next thing we will try after we empty this god-awful tank of petrol.

  7. #7

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    still haven't found time to swap the filter!

  8. #8
    Moderator wraithracing's Avatar
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    The trucks of those years have the issues with the dual tanks. Basically there should be a lift pump in each tank and then a High pressure pump on the frame rail. There is no actual switching valve when you switch tanks, the switch turns on the lift pump in the tank and the flow of fuel is suppose to cause the "valves" in the lines to open and close based upon the fuel pressure. The issue is that one lift pump will be running, but the return line for the other tank doesn't close properly and therefore your return fuel from one tank goes into the other tank rather than the correct tank. There was a Recall by for that installed "check" valves that were supposed to fix the problem. Unfortunately they did sometimes and others they did not. My Father's 89 F150 never worked right and constantly would fill from one tank into the other. My 92 F150 had the same issue, but off and on even with the Recall check valves. Honestly just really pissed me off.

    If the fuel in one of the tanks is crap there is a good possibility that either the sock filter is clogged up and or the lift pump in that tank. You might want to seriously consider dropping the tank to verify. The other option if you can is to pull the bed off the truck. That will give you access to both tanks and all the lines and you don't have to worry about dumping nasty fuel all over yourself under the truck. A suction pump can remove the majority of bad fuel and then you can drop the tank if needed to flush/clean it out.

    Also don't rule out the possibility of the high pressure pump crapping out on you or even being clogged up due to the bad fuel. Good Luck Buddy!
    ​Trey

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  9. #9

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    dumped some seafoam and other additives into the front fuel tanks shortly after we got the truck. The truck started running orders of magnitude better on the front tank than the rear.

    I didnt want to take the gas out of it if it runs because who the hell knows what to do with nasty old gas -- its a hazardous material and nobody wants the crap.

    So instead, its had a few tanks ran through it now on both tanks with the same additives in both and premium fuel, sloshing around, etc. Smell wise, it no longer smells like varnish at all. Running wise, it has cleaned up some.

    I've heard about and read the info on the gas ending up switching tanks, etc. Pain in the butt design really. What I determined is that if everything works right then when you run out of gas on one tank then that tank should stay out of gas. If not, then you have a problem there. So we've driven it enough and ran it out of gas on one tank vs the other enough now to verify that when you run it out of gas on one tank that the truck will never magically end up with fuel back in that tank again until we fill it again.

    So where I'm at with it is try a fuel filter. If that doesn't solve it then replace the fuel pickup socks and lift pumps and fuel pump and of course the filter again.

    Honestly knowing how Fords love to eat a fuel pump every 120-140K, it seems to me that a pump replacement is just part of good maintenance on an almost 23 year old truck that seems to have all of its original parts on it.

    The only thing I've found on this truck that had been changed when we bought the truck were the spark plugs and the cap/rotor and front brakes.

    We've changed the distributor because it was corroded up and nasty.

    We change the front brakes along with the pins because the caliper pins were rusted up nasty stuck and bent all to hell.

    We've changed the throttle position sensor because it had a dead spot and was junk.

    I'll probably put in a new ignition module from Motorcraft and a new map sensor too. Again just part of maintenance.

    At Certified Transmission we had the E4OD trans filter replaced with an OE replacement. They cleaned the pan in their parts washer and hooked their pump up and did a full fluid back-flush which includes what is in the torque converter and lines then too. They put it all back together and filled the system back up.

    BTW -- Why certified? Here in Omaha at their Millard location they've always treated my stuff like its their own when I've went to see them. They've had about 3 shots at telling me I needed a new transmission here or there along the way and said very specifically you need this part or that one and my vehicles have been back in business for a few hundred bucks instead of thousands and have stayed going without further problems down the road a few miles.

    Bonus points when they asked me questions like do you pull a trailer with your MarkLT and if so how heavy and have you done anything for shift improvement when towing. Then rather than suggesting a shift kit they could have sold me and installed on the spot they told me about a tuner from Hypertech that lets me dial the improvement in when I'm towing stuff. My MarkLT has 108K miles and I've had to towed as much as 14K lbs with it from Omaha to Austin with no problems..... decided not to tempt fate anymore and that's a good portion of the reason for buying the F250 with the 460 and E4OD. The truck is just much better suited for towing heavy stuff.

  10. #10

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    My dads got a 93 e350. Its got the 460, bigger rear end and a stack of leafs in the rear almost a foot tall. Guy he bought it from towed a 60' trailer.

    Its a good van. Fun to drive, low miles, but about 6mpg. Loaded or not. Ita been sitting on the driveway for about 5 years due to gas costs. Been trying to talk him into getting a little e150.
    2 1986 cougars (both 4 eyed and 5.0)
    1 1987 cougar

  11. #11

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    They tow stuff down the road sideways at 80 though.... thatís what I love about them. Damn hard to argue with 490 lbs of torque at 1800 RPM.

    My MarkLT with a 5.4L 3V triton and 4 speed automatic has a hypertech tune in it for premium fuel only. 365HP and 405ftlbs but the max torque isnt there until 4200. Makes for damn high RPM tostay going at speed sometimes. 5500 in 2nd basically.

    It pulled a heavy ass 18x8.5 trailer to Austin and back but it didnít like it very much! I got 6.5 mpg going down with enough parts to make up a complete Four Eyed Fox spread between the truck and trailer. Wind restancr was the big factor - it only got 7 coming back.

    the trailer was a blunt nose and I bucked a head wind both ways.

    Stupid damn trailer is steel frame designed for hauling 8 motorcycles at a shot with the drop wells in the floor for the bike rim, etc. it weighed over 8500 empty. 12000 with the car and a spare diff, etc.

    Total weight around 18K - 18,500. An F150/MarkLT design truck is not designed for that!
    Last edited by erratic50; 06-17-2018 at 01:34 AM.

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