FORD F-250 Superduty 6.7L Powerstroke Diesel Heavy Towing Heavy Mechanic Review
Good day, everyone. My name is Alex, welcome. Today, we have the F250 once, equipped with the 6.7-liter Power Stroke engine. Last week, I made an error during the towing test, but now we’re back to set things right. We will truly explore the capabilities of the 6.7-liter Power Stroke. Stay tuned.
As you heard and observed, we are back with the 2023 F250 featuring the renowned 6.7 Power Stroke engine. In fact, it is the very same truck from last week, and there’s a purpose behind that decision. I admit my mistake. Previously, I towed approximately 16,500 pounds with this truck, and the experience was quite uncomfortable. I encountered significant trailer sway. Initially, I believed that since the truck’s tongue weight was around 1,600 pounds (about 10 percent), I was well within the towing specifications. I attributed any issues solely to the truck, as I couldn’t identify any other reasons.
However, many of you correctly pointed out in the comments of last week’s video that I was entirely mistaken. Today, I’m here to acknowledge my error, discuss what went wrong, why the trailer swayed, and take responsibility for my actions. Following that, we will take this truck back on the road and conduct a proper towing test, adhering to the correct procedures that should have been followed last week. That is our agenda for today.
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Now, and thankfully you guys usually point them out. But I felt a strong obligation to address this specific problem because it was completely my fault. It’s unfair to you, the subscribers, as well as the viewers. Moreover, it’s unfair to Ford. one can dream, and I would hate to bash a manufacturer when, in fact, it had nothing to do with them. It was entirely my own fault.
To be completely honest, when I towed with the Duramax two weeks ago, with all those concrete blocks, the video didn’t perform well. It was a bit concerning. So, I thought it might be more appealing to put my own truck, the Ram Power Wagon, on the trailer, similar to what the folks at TFL do, as they seem to have success with it. That’s why I went with that approach, hoping to generate more interest in the video.
As you saw, I initially positioned the truck facing forward, which caused the front end to dip down and the engine to rest heavily on the tongue. That concerned me. So, what did I do? I flipped the truck around, backed it onto the trailer, thinking it would be more appropriate for the tongue weight. However, this truck has a payload of only about 2,100 pounds, leaving little room to play with. The final mistake was placing those two 2,500-pound blocks on the back of the trailer, behind the rear axles. It appeared to me, and eventually the numbers showed, that I was well within the 10% tongue weight. I believed I would be fine with that. However, a comment struck a chord and made me realize where I went wrong. Someone mentioned that when I measured the tongue weight, it was a stationary measurement.
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True, when the truck is not moving and the load is not on the axles but rather on the back of the trailer, there is a teeter-tottering effect when the truck hits a bump. I didn’t take this into consideration. If the load were positioned over the axles, the teeter-tottering effect wouldn’t occur, and the tongue weight would align more accurately with the stationary measurement. It’s humbling to realize my mistake, but it’s one of the good things about the internet – quick feedback when you’re wrong.
Moving forward, I plan to make these towing tests more scientific. Instead of attempting to tow the maximum weight for each truck, I will establish standard weights for the 1500, 2500, and 3500 models. The 1500 will be around 9,100 pounds, the 2500 (gas or diesel) around 14,500 pounds, and the 3500 will be 20,000 pounds. I will keep these weights consistent across the board to compare how each engine performs and how the trucks handle the load. Additionally, I will mark the exact location of each block on the trailer, ensuring the same tongue weight and load characteristics for each truck test. This will allow us to measure factors such as squatting, fuel economy, acceleration, and the truck’s performance with a consistent load. It brings a more scientific viewpoint to the towing reviews and helps us evaluate how each truck compares to its competition.
Moving forward, I’m excited about these changes, and I hope it will provide a more comprehensive and scientific perspective. I apologize if that explanation was a bit long, but I believe it was important to address. Now, let’s move on to the 6.7-liter Power Stroke engine, which pumps out 475 horsepower and 1,050 pound-feet of torque. This particular model is the standard output edition.
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There is also a high-output edition with even more power, which I’m eager to review in the future. However, the standard edition we’re testing here is already an absolute beast. When we have the trailer fully loaded behind it, you’ll witness how effortlessly it handles towing. The abundance of power and torque, especially at lower RPMs, is simply mind-blowing. I can’t wait to hit the highway and experience it firsthand.
Speaking of which, I believe it’s time to take this truck out, load up the trailer, and embark on our journey. Let’s do that.
Thank you. It seems the truck didn’t appreciate the music choice.
Alright, right from the start, this load appears to be less complicated than last week’s. It’s super simple. We have four blocks weighing approximately 2,400 pounds each. Once we hit the scales and hit the road, we’ll have the exact weight. As you can see, I have positioned the rear blocks split between the two rear axles, and the front two blocks slightly ahead of the front axle. This configuration ensures a good amount of weight on the tongue while also distributing some weight to the front axle. It looks pretty promising to me.
However, we will confirm everything once we hit the scales and obtain all the necessary measurements. Ideally, we have achieved a perfect setup. In the future, when we conduct towing tests with the 2500 series, I’ll mark the precise location for each block, ensuring consistent loading. We want to eliminate any influence from the trailer itself and focus solely on evaluating the truck, which I believe is what you all are most interested in.
Before we hit the road, one last thing to note. As you can see, and hopefully, I’m not obstructing the view, the trailer is slightly nose-diving. The concrete floor here doesn’t help either. However, I have ordered a special item that will allow me to raise the pintle hitch and achieve a perfectly level towing position. It’s on its way in the mail, and we’ll address it soon. But for now, let’s get on the road and witness the difference in towing with a proper load. I’m excited.
Alright, we’re off on our second towing test with the F250. We have engaged tow haul mode and activated the exhaust brake. We’ll be cruising down the highway, anticipating a much better towing experience. I’m excited, and I believe it will go smoothly. We’re about to merge onto the highway, the critical point where things went wrong last time. Luckily, there are no vehicles behind me, and we’re currently cruising at 60 kilometers per hour. It’s time to put the pedal to the metal.
Oh, plenty of power, plenty of power. Now we’re going to set our cruising speed at 110 kilometers per hour. That is the speed limit. There’s no point in going faster, and I think that’s a pretty good cruising speed. So that’s what we’re going to do. So far, this thing feels incredibly different, much more solid, and yeah, it has tons of power from this Power Stroke engine, but you guys already know that.
Okay, we’ve only been on the road for about seven kilometers here, and without a doubt, last week’s towing was entirely my fault. This thing is solid as a rock. Yes, we have about 2,000 pounds less weight on here, but we’re also going 10 kilometers per hour faster. So we’ll put this thing on cruise, and we’ll see how it performs for the rest of the towing test. But I imagine it’s going to be pretty flawless, judging by just how smooth it’s going already, just 10 kilometers in.
Look at that load right there, passing that Ford Ranger. That’s a big trailer! I don’t know if he’ll be able to pull it up this hill. Not a boy.
Speaking of things that are very unique to the Power Stroke, which I touched on a little bit last week, is, well, first of all, the reversal of the intake and exhaust flow. In a normal V8, typically, the intakes are on the inside of the bank, and the exhausts are on the outside of the banks. Like I said, very traditional. But what Ford has done is they’ve placed a turbo dead center of the banks, and they’ve put the exhaust on the inside of the banks and the intakes on the outside.
Now, there are a couple of benefits to doing that, which include an increase in thermal efficiency and a minimization of pumping loss. Basically, what that translates to is that there’s less energy loss in the process of getting to the turbo, and more of that energy is transferred into mechanical energy, powering the wheels. That’s one thing I really like about this Power Stroke.
Another nice feature of this Power Stroke is that in 2020, Ford introduced a fully electronic VGT turbo, which stands for variable geometry turbo. Having a fully electronic VGT means that the turbo responses are lightning fast. Well, we’re not really in any boost right now, but once we come up to that hill, I’ll show you. It’ll just be like that. We’ll gain boost, as you can see on the boost gauge, and we’ll keep on pumping.
Another cool touch that Ford did to this 6.7-liter Power Stroke diesel is in 2020, they implemented steel pistons. Super cool. I’ve talked about this a couple of times, but Ford realized that although steel is heavier and not ideal for a rotating mass in the engine, as it can throw off the balance, they found that since steel is much stronger than typical aluminum pistons that were previously used in these engines, they could use a lot less of it. The end result is a steel piston that weighs almost the same as the original aluminum piston, maybe a little bit more, but with that slight added weight, you get a much stronger piston that can handle higher heat and pressure tolerances than aluminum pistons.
Now, along with having a smaller, shorter piston, Ford also had to make new connecting rods, and they beefed those up as well. So you do get a pretty strong bottom end rotating assembly in this Power Stroke. So we’re dropping down into the valley here. We’ll see how well this truck can maintain 110 kilometers per hour. The exhaust brake on this engine is actually pretty good. It’s pretty noticeable. The Duramax did not really feel too noticeable until you got to around 3000 RPM. So we’ll see what this thing can do with that weight, pushing her down the hill here. We’re creeping up past 110. Let’s see if it’ll keep us in range, about 115 kilometers per hour.
Okay, we downshifted at 2,000 RPM. Eighth gear seems to be keeping us at 115.
I don’t like that. We’re not staying at 110, but you can definitely feel that exhaust brake holding you back a little bit. Not bad, not bad. Downshifted two gears. Well, we’ve made it to the halfway point. We’re at the truck stop. We’re going to weigh this thing just over there in a second, but yeah, she is performing much, much better than last time, and I think that’s to be expected.
Straps are tight. She’s good. Hubs feel good. Perfect, perfect. Alright, so we got our trailer and truck working in good combination this time.
This thing is running real good. The trailer’s running real good, and we’re going to see how much this thing actually weighs. You can see the truck. It’s actually sitting nice and level, which is perfect. The trailer is not sitting level, but like I said, I have something on order that we can lift that up and make that level and have a perfect truck and trailer combination for future tests. Alright, let’s jump on the scale here. Pounds, please. That’s your truck number, number one!
Thank you. Got my scale weights. We are basically right at 14,000 pounds, which is not a bad weight. I might just keep it there. We’ll see. But yeah, tongue weight is in spec. We are basically right at 10, which is good, and this thing is towing like an absolute dream. So I think we have a pretty good setup behind us for future 2500 pulls, which I’m excited about.
We are pulling out of our halfway checkpoint here, the Irving Gas Station. Gotta love it, and we’re going to make our way downriver, head back to the shop. Alright, we’re jumping on the highway once again. We’ll do a pull from 60 to 110 and see how this thing does. Alright, to the floor. Slight uphill too, and 110.
There we go. We were going a little uphill, so she was a little slower than the first time we did it. Jumping on the highway back in Fredericton, but amazed at how much power and speed is still in this engine with 14,000 pounds behind her. It’s impressive. Now, I am also excited to get some gas engines towing this trailer. That’s really the main reason why I’ve kept the 2500 towing number so low.
I think we’re going to stick at 14,000 pounds because the Chevy 2500 with the 6.6-liter gas engine, the max towing capacity in terms of a conventional tow, is only 14,500 pounds. So that is why the 2500 number is so low. And thankfully, the 3500s, we can go up to 20,000 pounds to really put some pressure.
I don’t even think this Power Stroke is going to need to come out of an overdrive gear, which again is insane. But there’s so much power coming from this engine. It would not surprise me. But first, we gotta get down there. Downshifted to 6th gear, really making this engine work to keep that speed. 3,100 RPMs! That’s pretty high for a diesel, but it’s good to see that exhaust brake working well, keeping us in spec at 110 kilometers per hour.
And we’ll see what this engine does going up the valley hill here. So at 109 kilometers per hour, lost a little bit of speed there. Ninth gear. It’s here, turbo boost has come up quite a bit. 108, 107, Ford. There we go, downshift to 8th gear. Still in overdrive gear, we’re really boosting now, as you guys can see. There we go, back to 110.
Wow, 8th gear, pretty impressive. Yeah, she’s just gonna stay the course here, just a hair under 2000 RPM, and she’s just gonna work her way up this hill. Not much to her, not much to her. Makes it look too easy, and just like that, we’re up the hill with no drama. But that’s what I expected.
Now, I know I’ve said a lot of good things about this Power Stroke, and I do think it actually is a pretty solid diesel engine. But there is one sticking point for me, and that is the CP4 fuel pump that Ford puts on these engines. I don’t know why they do. GM went through the ringer with their LML Duramax from like 2011 to 2016.
I believe that’s the era of those generations of Duramaxes, and they had the Bosch CP4 fuel pump on it, and it imploded left, right, and center. And when those fuel pumps explode, break, or fail, they take out the whole fueling system, which can cost like $10,000 to $15,000 in damages. And there’s really no ifs, ands, or buts. If it does fail, you need to replace your whole fuel system because on modern diesel engines, in fact, any diesel engine, the fuel system is so complex, and the tolerances and pressures of these fuel systems are extreme. So any little bit of metal shavings just ruins the whole thing. And that’s what was happening with the Bosch CP4 fuel pumps. They were allegedly made for only low-sulfur diesel fuel. Now, in North America, here, we use what’s called ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel. So there’s obviously less sulfur content in it. And when it comes to diesel fuels, I’m obviously not a chemist, but from what I’ve been reading, the sulfur almost acts as a lubricant to the diesel. And so obviously with less of that sulfur as a lubricant, it is what is wearing the pumps. Now, Ford does not experience as many CP4 fuel pump failures as GM did, so there is something to be said there. But I would never trust it after the absolute debacle GM went through, and they’re still facing class-action lawsuits against that. And it’s no wonder in 2017, GM completely switched up their fuel system and no longer has any Bosch products on their Duramax in terms of fueling systems. So it is a mystery why Ford still uses the CP4 fuel pump. It’s something that would definitely be a sticking point for me if I were looking to buy this engine.
80 to the floor. 110. Yeah, that’s, uh, again.
I mean, these diesels, they are quite efficient, especially when it comes to towing. I think it’ll be really fun when we get a gas engine out here in a 2500 and see what it gets for fuel economy. I imagine it’ll be much higher, but that’s the beauty of what I’m trying to do here – having the same loaded trailer for every 2500. That way, when it comes to fuel economy numbers, it’s a direct comparison. We’re going to run the exact same loop, same distance, same conditions because we go there and we come back.
So if we’re facing a heavy headwind, we’ll have a heavy tailwind on the way back, so that shouldn’t matter. That’s what I’m really excited about. Alright, we made it back to the yard. It’s a little windy out, but wow, what a difference it made with a different load setup. This thing was solid as a rock, even though it’s not a Chevy, it’s a Ford.
Oh, there it is. Yeah, no, this thing was super easy to drive on the highway, like it should have been the first time. But you know, live and learn, as I’ve said many times in this video. So we’ll get this stuff unloaded, and then I’ll give you guys my final conclusion about the Super Duty, and it’s going to be a little bit different than last week, that’s for sure.
Well, guys, the conclusion is pretty simple. This thing tows very well. It handled this 14,000 pounds with complete ease most of the time, as you guys saw going up hills. This thing was still in an overdrive gear, which is a little bit crazy. In terms of towing comfort, once I had my load correct, finally, this thing towed like an absolute dream. It was super solid. I felt incredibly confident, and I could just drive and focus on the road, focus on making a video, and not have to worry about putting this thing in the ditch or median.
Now, the good news is we’re starting to really dial in this whole trailering thing and bring some science to it. So when we get other trucks with this trailer behind them, we can really see where the benefits and disadvantages of each truck lie when it comes to towing. That’s exactly what I’m looking to do next week. Ideally, I’d want to get a 2500 gas engine in front of this trailer, or maybe even a 1500 gas engine. I think that would be fun, but that’s what we’re doing next week. So hopefully you guys enjoyed this redemption video, and if you did, don’t forget to leave that thumbs up. And if you like cool stuff like this, don’t forget to subscribe. But as I mentioned, we’re on the right track. I’m really going to get this trailering dialed in and show you guys the pros and cons of each truck, which I think will be really fun.
But as always, enough of me, and we’ll see you in the next topic.