22nd Mar 2004, 07:55

I have driven my 1997 F-150 over 100,000 miles since I bought it used in 1999. I have also changed the oil and filter regularly and still haven't had any problems out of it. I believe you have gotten a lemon my friend. My father and I still have a bet going on which 1997 F-150 will last the longest. Both have over 150,000 miles on our trucks. I believe your decision to ban Ford products has been made in haste.

28th Apr 2004, 09:39

I have also had $1600.00 worth of work done to my 1997 F150 due to the motor locking up. What added to the aggravation, is we live in Texas and were on vacation in Colorado and had to rent a U-Haul to get the truck home. I have also done some checking around, there are at least five other trucks in our small town of four thousand which have had the same problem (the way I look at it, that's a fairly large percentage).

10th Jul 2004, 07:12


I too have 98 F150 with the 4.2. Went to start it one day, and the engine started knocking. I found numerous cases online of the same type. The 4.2 seems to have been built with faulty gaskets, causing coolant to leak into engine and engine failure.

I am not dissing Ford, as it could, and does, happen in all companies. They knew there was a problem, they should fix it. My truck has around 115k, and was well maintained. I still owe quite a bit on it. Email me at: impalass@tcac.net

14th Jul 2004, 12:49

I too have a 97 F150 and guessed what happened to me last week. I started the engine and it sounded like a metal can was caught in my fan blade. Unfortunately, there was no can and the fan blades were the least of my problems. KNOCK! KNOCK! KNOCK! I looked under the truck and there was all of my coolant mixed with some muddy looking oil and water mixture pouring on to the ground. The color of my oil on the dipstick looks like chocolate milk. I'm guessing from what I've read on this site that I have a blown gasket or a crack on the engine block... How much are these repairs? And does labor charges account for the largest percentage of the mechanics fee in this situation? Or is the truck trashed? Someone help before I swear off Ford forever...

2nd Aug 2004, 18:37

One morning I noticed that the engine of my 1997 Ford F-150 (4.2L) was knocking. I had it towed to a repair shop, and had to have the motor replaced. This was about 18 months ago. Since then, I have had a number of problems with the truck. At this time, it is in the shop. The repair technicians cannot determine what is wrong. The truck is running very sluggishly until it gets to about 35 mph, then it runs OK. Years ago I had a 1980 Ford Mustang. After the repeated problems I had with that vehicle, I promised I would never purchase a Ford again, but I did. I will never make that mistake again.

8th Aug 2004, 18:44

I'm about to buy a 1997 ford f150 for like 800 dollars. It too is making the knocking noise... should I get it anyway?

9th Sep 2004, 06:05

I too have a 1997 F150 with 53000 miles. It was running fine. I went into work came back out and the engine was locked up. It turns out that the intake gasket had blown causing the #1 cylinder to fill with antifreeze and bent the rod. There must be a lot of problems with these engines. I still think ford makes a good product. I have a 1992 E350 with 294000 miles still running strong, but I think ford should accept responsibilty for the bad design of the 4.2liter if everyone seems to be having problems with them.

26th Oct 2004, 02:22

My 97 Ford F150 has been having many of the problems listed above. The sound of tin cans in the fan, the coolant leaking all over and not from the pump or hoses, and just yesterday I started hearing knocking sounds and it is running sluggish. Just 3 days ago I had the front timing cover gasket replaced as the source of leaking coolant. Thanks to all you I now know what to expect as my truck sits alone in the cold dark shop with it's engine riped apart. I did contact for and notified them of this and they said there has not been a recall only standard repair procedure. I think we all need to start complaining. Good luck to all! Thanks for all the info!

11th Nov 2004, 11:17

I agree with most posts on this comment. Ford has "engineered" many vehicles in this fashion in the past. Other ones include the Explorer, Focus, and Taurus among a long list of others. All the people sticking up for the company are not looking at the facts. When dealing with the 4.2, it has many deficiencies. Everyone else either is driving it to the grocery store or owns a different engine in their truck. Good luck with all, and I switched from Ford to Dodge and am loving every minute of it.

30th Nov 2004, 07:09

I just made the last payment on my 1997 F-150 with the 4.2L engine in November of this year (2004). I kept making a joke with my co-workers that this has been a great truck and as soon as I make the last payment something will go wrong. Well, my family and I were on our way to North Florida for Thanksgiving with some friends and the engine with 112K miles on it started to knock, the temp gage went high and the oil gagee dropped to zero. Luckily we were only two blocks from the repair shop that I use to work on the truck, they gave us a ride to our house and we were able to take my wife's Ford Taurus to our thanksgiving. However now I am looking at a very expensive bill on either replacing the engine or getting it fixed. I wish there was a recall on this engine.

8th Aug 2005, 15:39


Just started reading around the different forms &... GAZILLIONS!!! of 97'& 98' F150 4.2L V6 with this Gasket (also the burnt starters (hydro lock) same problem earlier warning signs we (owners and mechanics) didn't catch) problem. I bought my 97' with 12,000. Ball Joints 22,000, First starter 24,000. Coolant leak 24,500. Starter #2 33,000. O2 Sensors 37,000. Coolant smell Dealer stated it's burn off from work done. 300 later...BOOOMMM!!! Junked the #1 rod & block, Long Block @ 40,000."I wish I would have known before I blew up the ENGINE" I have So much Time, Money, Now I feel beat down that all this was known problems we (owners & mechanics) could have dealt w/. I am very willing to PAY & fix it if I would have been told (before I brought it in the 16th time) Always worked on by dealer!!! I have $4700 in receipts from this GASKET fiasco. *P.S. Darn tough engine to take the hydo lock (twice if not more) and keep running like nothing happened. I love this truck and have owned (3 other US trucks Dg, Chv & traded back all Since 2000.

I will keep my ford and fix it.