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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings,
I recently changed the plugs on my van. Itsa 250 with the 3.5L twin turbo. I got a misfire code, took it to the dealer who said it was a broken spark plug in bay #2 .
In the 30 or so years doing my on general maintenance, I've never broken a plug. Furthermore, the van keeps kept misfiring and now I've fouled the cat on bank #2 .
Which if my info is right, bank #2 cat is on the drivers side, where the misfire was in cylinder #2 on the bank#1 side. The dealer is also doing a lot of these cat change outs which can run up to $2000. WTF !!!! The van has only 90,000 miles on it. My '97 van had 200K and my 2013 had 300K before starting to give me problems.
Is this 3.5L engine crap or what. Has anyone else replaced cats because of misfires ????
Thanks,
Bryan
 

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The Dealer is telling you the CAT is bad or a code your reading states the CAT is possibly defective?
How many miles did you drive with the spark plug issue?
 

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The Dealer is telling you the CAT is bad or a code your reading states the CAT is possibly defective?
How many miles did you drive with the spark plug issue?
My thought. A misfire shouldn't kill the catalytic converter in a couple of days. A month or two would be more like it.

I had an 2011 Chevy Equinox 2.4l that burned oil for at least a couple years before I bought it. GM had an extended warranty for this and rebuilt the engine (pistons, rings, timing chain, etc). Previous owner was an idiot who never bothered to get this fixed.

A month or two later I could tell from the obd2 graphs of the post O2 sensor that the cat was dying. The had an extended warranty for that too. (I finally dump the pos for our Transit ?<img src="http://www.fordtransitusaforum.com/images/smilies/tango_face_wink.png" border="0" alt="" title="Wink" class="inlineimg" />
It was a direct injection and it is the reason I soured on direct injections. Not all gdi engines are made the same. But that 2.4l is notoriously bad.

Too the OP, how long did you run it like that? I doubt if it caused it.
As for the broken plug, did you use a anti-seize? That is not recommended on the newer plugs (plated) and can cause over torque.
 

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Broken plug, as it snapped in half? Of just defective?

Plugs can be defective right off the shelf. I've seen plug that have been dropped work when you first install them, and then after they heat up or some time after start to cause issues.

Change the plugs again, clear the codes and see what happens.
 

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I have seen Cats destroyed by several minutes of misfiring, not days or weeks.( Audi VW comes to mind!)

Its why some cars makers shut down the cylinder (s) which is the cause of the contamination miss-fire. (BMW Minis come to mind !)
Do take into account that vehicle manufactures do not always get the same coating of noble metals on "the brick" inside the Cat as they used to. Its all about cutting production costs.

The same goes for post Cat O2 sensors.
Traditionally they (rear O2 sensors) used to monitor just Cat efficiency , but nowadays they trim the fuel especially LTFT trimming , hence any deterioration in Cat & O2 sensor readings will be picked up by the ECM and start flagging codes.
So I can easily see why raw fuel pumped out of a miss-firing would quickly do a Cat in if the conditions were right !
Dennis
 

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Yes i would like to know what was the outcome of this problem.

What I ought to mention (might have significance) when you are talking about GDi tech engines is the extraordinary steps manufacturers have gone to follow the EPA study paper written on getting the Cats up to working temperatures (often called lighting up) within a minute or so from cold start ups.
Obviously over the years the target has always been to reduce emissions during the warm up phase from cold when the OBD2 controls are in open loop. , (obviously when the ICE (engine) is most pollutive ).

With GDI engines of today, the air & fuel setting at start up are so out of whack in an adiabatic sense that the engine wouldn't run properly without a fine control from the ECM, thus allowing the rapid warm up and getting the Cats to the correct operating temperature in the shortest time possible! Where of course the correct chemical reaction & pollution control can take place to bring the engine into E compliance with subsequent closed loop conditions.

If you have an "ear" for it, you can sometimes judge a GDi engine note or tone is different when its operating at idle at operating temperature, than when its in warm up phase.
From my perspective I am always interested to see how these systems operate in the long term and affect component life such as Cats etc.
Cheers Dennis
 

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"Adiabatic"

Now there's a word I haven seen since my graduate classed in Meteorology! That would be over 40 years ago!!!!!!!!!
Yes that is where it was also commonly used in Motor Vehicle engineering classes with reference to perfect combustion @14.7:1 air fuel ratio.
Then along came Mr Bosch in the 1980's and called it Lambda 1.
Any deviation from a rich and a lean mixture from that perfect combustion was given a Lambda plus or minus ratio figures depending upon STFR & LTFR's.

Nowadays if you mention adiabatic combustion you must be a professor or something highbrow like a doctor of engineering !
AND!
On that note I will mention the British Club in Baghdad, and the men's lavatory (bathroom) with antique porcelain urinal, where relief was taken from drinking too much local Scheherazade beer !
Scribbled graffiti on the wall at eye level was a slogan:- Yesterday I couldn't even spell it now are are one--Emigineer!:D
Cheers Dennis
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Greetings,
I took the van up to be inspected on Saturday. It passed the mechanical inspection but not the emissions, but, we knew that going in there and the p0430 is still haunting me.
The code calls insufficiency on bank 2 cat. The misfire was on bank 1. This is very strange to me and a very expensive fix.
The dealer ordered the part, $1600 and some change for crying out loud and I'm due in on the this week for install.
I have watched a video where a failed cat was repaired by poring a gallon of lacquer thinner into 4 gallons of gas. The cat was fixed but then there were problems with the fuel delivery, so I'm not trying that method.
I am going to disconnect the battery to clear any codes. The P0430 is now permanent and can't be erased by my OBD scanner. I will reconnect the battery and hopefully the P0430 code will not be there.
I will drive and most likely code again on the P0430. I will remove the up stream 02 sensors on both cats (while warm) and spray the opening with Sea Foam and let soak for 20 minutes. Then reinstall the up stream 02 sensors and start the engine with any luck the Sea Foam will clear the cats and the code will disappear.
And if that doesn't work I'm in the hole for about $2300 sheckles....
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Hola,
Looks like last posted on the 14th. Y'all probably wondering what was the outcome of the bad cat. Well,

$3600 to get the cats replaced. I was first quoted $2300 but they have to rip apart the sub-frame to get to the cats and the bolts snapped off requiring surgery to remove those and the control arms didn't survive the surgery and what a **** show. Two days because they had to get a special tool from Snap-on to get the frame pieces apart. The mechanic I trust and is very knowledgeable says the design sucks and the cats are junk !!!! Ford is using the bare minimum pollution grabbing metals in the cats. Junk, junk, junk. The mechanic says he is doing a cat replacement every three weeks. So, my conspiracy mind starts humming and I think Ford has this thing planned from the get-go. They put an engine in that'll fail in less than 100,000 miles, destroy the cats and design a frame around it that'll cost thousands to replace. A win-win for the dealership and Ford the manufacturer from making the extra money off the replacement parts.
My 1997 250 econoline had 169,00 before giving me a problem and I believe that repair was around $600
My 2003 250 econoline got 289,000 miles without any major headaches, hmmm, not much after market profit it that, huh ???? My grandfather always told me,if it walks like a duck, and talks like a duck, must be a duck !!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Transit catalyst problems

Hola,
Looks like I last posted on 4/15, and I think I quick replied so I'm typing this again for y'all to see !!!!

$3600 to replace the cats in my 2015 3.5L ecoboost transit. I was first quoted $2300 but the bolts snapped when they tried removing the sub-frame to get to the cats which required advanced surgery to extract the bolts and the control arms didn't survive the surgery. Two days to get this done because they had to get a special tool from Snap-on to get the sub-frame apart. What a **** show....
So the mechanic who I trust and is very knowledgeable told me this is a bad design. He's doing these doing one on a Transit right now that has only 20,000 on it. He also says that Ford is using the bare minimum pollutant grabbing metals in these cats. Junk, junk, junk....So now my conspiracy mind starts to hum a little louder....
My 1997 250 econoline had 169,00 miles on it before it gave me a problem and I think that repair was around $600.
My 2003 250 econoline had 289,00 miles on it without a bit of trouble.
Not much after market profit in those vehicles, huh ???? Ford builds an engine that is fouls up the cats at a 100,000 miles or less, then they design a frame around it that costs thousands in parts and labor to replace. Hmmm....My grandfather always told me, if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck....
I am researching NIssans and Chevy's right now and unloading my Transit !!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Greetings,
Thats it for my 22 years of owning Ford vans. I've heard nothing but bad news about the transit vans. The problems are engine, transmission, brake calipers, all are crap. Ford has no engineering expertise anymore, they are all for the quick profits from cheap products. I saw a Nissan yesterday with a 5yr 100,000 mile warranty. Seems like they stand behind their product. I've yet to check out the Chevy, but the Nissan is looking pretty tough.
Ford can go pound sand, what a disappointment with the Transit !!!!
 

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Sorry to hear that your experience has been less than enjoyable. While expecting a perfect vehicle is unrealistic, most of us here have had wonderful experiences with our Transits in the 4+ years I have been on this Forum.
I've heard almost nothing but good news about them and have not found any crap on mine, only very reliable utility. ymmv.
 

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Man that really sucks. I hate those kind of situations. I personally wouldn't know if it was Ford, or the mechanics your dealing with that are screwing up. It wouldn't be hard to believe that a mechanic rushed a $300 job and cost a customer $3000 in future repairs and would blame the vehicle because of it.

Anyways your best bet is to pull it back together, shine it up and sell it at a loss.
 

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Greetings,
I recently changed the plugs on my van. Itsa 250 with the 3.5L twin turbo. I got a misfire code, took it to the dealer who said it was a broken spark plug in bay #2 .
In the 30 or so years doing my on general maintenance, I've never broken a plug. Furthermore, the van keeps kept misfiring and now I've fouled the cat on bank #2 .
Which if my info is right, bank #2 cat is on the drivers side, where the misfire was in cylinder #2 on the bank#1 side. The dealer is also doing a lot of these cat change outs which can run up to $2000. WTF !!!! The van has only 90,000 miles on it. My '97 van had 200K and my 2013 had 300K before starting to give me problems.
Is this 3.5L engine crap or what. Has anyone else replaced cats because of misfires ????
Thanks,
Bryan
Cats don't just die. They are murdered. (personally I like killing cats >:D)
Misfires will in fact kill your catalytic converter. Engine compensating for the misfire may dump fuel into the other cylinders and also cause it to kill the cats.
I went through this with an oil burning Equinox that I finally sold and bought my transit.
GM extended the warranty on that engine and the catalytic converters. They rebuilt the engine and replaced the cats.

You broke your sparkplug and cat dies = Fords fault :s
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Transit catalyst problems

NO sir, I've been changing plugs for 38 years without a problem. I picked up a miss on bank #2 , the cat under performed (failed) on bank #1 . Hmmm. The 3.5L suks, the drive shaft was recalled, the transmissions are blowlng up under 100,000 miles, I've had my one rear brake caliper replaced at 50,000. I recently put new pads on all around and now the van is "nose diving", there is not enough of the rear brakes engaging. They are not balanced correctly. No sir, I did not brake my plug, Ford engineering has became lackadaisical and has succumbed to the corporate privileged. They are more concerned with where to go to lunch than putting out a reliable product....I have looked at the Nissan NV and will most likely purchase withing the next two months. I have yet to check out the Chevy, but I see a lot of Nissan vans out there. And they can offer a 5 year 100,000 mile warranty and built in America. Ford can go pound sand....
 
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