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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy, folks!

I'm a newbie and have searched for any threads that might point to one year being better/worse than another. I'm looking for a Transit 150/250 HR to drive around the US/Canada towing a 12' enclosed trailer with one - or maybe two - motorcycles in the back. I think I'd like a used cargo van because after my epic road trip, I'm parking the motos and selling the Transit. Getting kind of long in the tooth to be riding.

I'm betting that every year probably has some glitches, but I think overall the Ford line is pretty **** good. If there are any huge problems, I'd appreciate hearing about them.

Also, I can't help but think this has been addressed ad nauseum, LOL. Please feel free to redirect me to another section of the Forum if so. My apologies for torturing you all with yet another question like this.

I also Googled it, but didn't find much to go on.

Thanks,
Sarah
 

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They are all almost identical besides the addition/deletion of a few available options. Same engines, transmissions, rear ends, suspension, body, dashboard, etc from 2015-2018. The 2019 got a slightly different shaped grill and possibly some other unimportant changes, but the biggest improvement was changing the air filter box.

2020 will feature ACTUAL changes and options, such as two new engines (3.5 non-turbo and 2.0l diesel replacing the current versions) and a 10-speed tranny to replace the 6-speed. And other stuff.

So, if you're looking to buy a used van, look at the total miles on it and the condition, not the year, because it doesn't matter.*


*no, Ford didn't fix the water draining onto the air filter box, it still does. In years 2015-2018 the airbox featured an upturned lip that allowed water to enter the airbox, soak the filter, and disintegrate it into tiny bits of paper that could enter the intake and engine. In 2016 Ford added some plastic gutters as a recall and new build addition that diverted the water into the fender body cavity (yes, that is correct!) but some water still drained onto the airbox, as well as the wiring harness on the drivers side. In 2019 they changed the airbox to have an overlap to prevent water from collecting there. But water still drains off the windshield onto it, as well as the wiring harness. 2020 may be different.
 
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As far as a used Transit, the 2018 model has had the most added things since the 2015 model. Some of the input from forum members got placed on this model and even though it is only one model year back, it has a lot of popular standard equipment. If you are going for a price range, the 2018 model with the equipment you want may be out of your range.

The HR model will be the hardest to find and if you start wanting options like the 3.5L EcoBoost engine, Cruise Control, and Trailer Towing package, these will limit what you might find available. With the HR model, you will only find it in the T-250 & T-350 series. Be ready to make a possible long distance trip to find the right Transit for you. They do not always show up where you would want one to be.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Ok, you guys, as an older woman, I have to say I was nervous about posting my question. I've been on some pretty brutal forums that shred newcomers to bits, but I really wanted to get some info. Thanks for being so helpful! All your info is great.

Inkog - Good advice, totally agree with you about letting Ford work out the kinks on the 2020. Much as I want the AWD, I'll wait. I've bought a brand new model motorcycle and regretted it, and also bought an older bike that was only made for one year. Regretted that, too. LOL . Learned my lesson.

Surly Bill -- Let me ask you about the water/air filter issue. I understand there was a TSB for a temporary fix. That didn't work so well? If not, what's the solution -- just check your air filter regularly or after a big rain? I watched a YT video about an air filter replacement on a 2015 Transit. It didn't look that hard, more a PITA than anything else. I have other things I'd rather be doing, though!

Also, CrewVanMan -- you wrote: The HR model will be the hardest to find and if you start wanting options like the 3.5L EcoBoost engine, Cruise Control, and Trailer Towing package, Have to say, I LMAO when I read that. Yes, that's exactly what I want. I'm lucky enough (frequent flyer miles & stuff) to have access to cheap flights in the US, so getting somewhere isn't a problem for me. Do I track down this elusive beast just by searching individual car lots and dealerships? Maybe use Searchtempest for CraigsList entries? Are there specific used car/van dealers that the Forum likes?

Thanks, gents, I appreciate it.
 

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Surly Bill -- Let me ask you about the water/air filter issue. I understand there was a TSB for a temporary fix. That didn't work so well? If not, what's the solution -- just check your air filter regularly or after a big rain? I watched a YT video about an air filter replacement on a 2015 Transit. It didn't look that hard, more a PITA than anything else. I have other things I'd rather be doing, though!
The best fix is the Tupperware Underhood Rain Diverter or TURD. A sink tub available at Wal-mart for $1.79, and is not actually Tupperware. Find a post from @EddieZ and look for the link in his signature file.
 

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The best fix is the Tupperware Underhood Rain Diverter or TURD. A sink tub available at Wal-mart for $1.79, and is not actually Tupperware. Find a post from <!-- BEGIN TEMPLATE: dbtech_usertag_mention --> @EddieZ <!-- END TEMPLATE: dbtech_usertag_mention --> and look for the link in his signature file.

And... here I am, with my sig lines link.
 

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oilfizzy

If you know which HR model you want with the equipment you want on it, i can help with your search. I have access to the Nationwide Ford search system for the Transit on NEW models as well as the Ford Pre-Owned search feature. So once you know a price range and the equipment you want, I take that information and use it to plug in perimeters for the search.

Certain options become hard-to-find especially when looking for the HR models and especially the HR Extended. Looking for the 3.5L EcoBoost engine in a HR is difficult since most of the early builds were the 3.7L which comes with the base 4.10 rear axle ratio. Getting the EcoBoost engine will get you a 3.31 ratio for better mileage or the 3.73 ratio for better towing and carrying capacity.

Next hard-to-find option is Cruise Control. A lot of the HR buyers are wanting this option for their long trips and most dealers initially order these vans for Commercial use and Cruise Control is not a consideration. The next most requested option is Trailer Tow package. This one is complicated as it uses a special module for the wiring system and just not a matter of connecting existing wiring with a trailer wire connection. Getting a aftermarket hitch requires tapping threads for the mounting area and getting the proper wiring connected to the Ford wiring module. As some buyers have found out, making the wrong connections can knock out your complete lighting system on your Transit.

Then the 'colors other than white' issue as nearly 95% of the Transits you see are Oxford White. This becomes a special ordered vehicle in most cases with popular ordered colors being Ingot Silver and Magnetic Metallic. The next group are Blue Jeans, White/Gold, and Stone Gray (which is really not a gray color, but a light tannish/brown color) which are rarely seen on any Transit. The last group of colors are Shadow Black, Green Gem, and Race Red which the black and green colors can be confused together as the green is so dark it can look like the Shadow Black color in dim or cloudy lighting. Bright sunlight really brings out the color in the Green Gem and the ones who order this color really like it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks, Travlin. I'm a newbie to the Forum, restricted from viewing links until I've posted 10 or more. Will check it out when I pass muster.

By the way, now I know I'll have to buy a Transit, just so I can say I have a, uhhh, turd under the hood.

I'm looking forward to reading that 112-page thread called 'Air Filter Nightmare.'

Sheesh.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
CrewVanMan,

I have access to the Nationwide Ford search system for the Transit on NEW models as well as the Ford Pre-Owned search feature.

Wow, thanks for the offer of assistance and the insider rundown on Transits and availability of options.

I hit a couple of those boxes for sure: cruise control, EcoBoost engine, tow package.

I have some work to do, though, to educate myself about those options. Not sure that I need the tow package, although at first it was a mandatory item. I'm looking at the 12' enclosed trailer hauling a 275-pound small bike plus *maybe* 500 pounds worth of moto junk.

I have the annual towing guides put out by Trailer Life, so I need to dig in and see if just a regular hitch on the back of a Transit would suffice. (I figure a 6x12 dual axle enclosed trailer is pushing about 5300 lbs. I need to research this and make sure I'm not close to the max.)

Thanks mucho for your kind offer - I have you on speed dial now. :D
 

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With the 3.7L engine in the HR van, you have a 6200 LBS Maximum Loaded Trailer Weight and HR Extended at 6000 LBS.

With the optional 3.5L EcoBoost engine and 3.31 rear axle ratio, you have 5300 LBS and using the 3.73 ratio, 6700 LBS with the HR 148" WB van. Going with the same engine in the HR Extended, 5100 LBS on the 3.31 ratio and 6500 LBS on the 3.73 ratio.

If you end up with the rare 3.2L Diesel engine, you have 4400 LBS with the 3.31 ratio and 7300 LBS with the 3.73 ratio in the HR 148" WB and 4200 LBS in the 3.31 ratio and 7100 LBS in the 3.73 ratio.
 

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Thanks, Travlin. I'm a newbie to the Forum, restricted from viewing links until I've posted 10 or more. Will check it out when I pass muster.

By the way, now I know I'll have to buy a Transit, just so I can say I have a, uhhh, turd under the hood.

I'm looking forward to reading that 112-page thread called 'Air Filter Nightmare.'

Sheesh.
Instead of reading the thread, do what others do and just write a post at the end of it saying "Didn't Ford fix this?" >:D

(actually, I think I and others summarized the entire thread somewhere in the last 5 pages)
 

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...


*no, Ford didn't fix the water draining onto the air filter box, it still does. In years 2015-2018 the airbox featured an upturned lip that allowed water to enter the airbox, soak the filter, and disintegrate it into tiny bits of paper that could enter the intake and engine. In 2016 Ford added some plastic gutters as a recall and new build addition that diverted the water into the fender body cavity (yes, that is correct!) but some water still drained onto the airbox, as well as the wiring harness on the drivers side. In 2019 they changed the airbox to have an overlap to prevent water from collecting there. But water still drains off the windshield onto it, as well as the wiring harness. 2020 may be different.

Hey, you ought to add that summation to your own sig lines!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
CrewVanMan, thank you for the weights!

I'm concerned that a tandem axle trailer plus bikes & gear might be pushing it a bit, depending on what Transit I get. Might have to reconsider the dual axle, although I like it from a safety standpoint. Looks as though I need to head over to the Towing section and see wassup.

Also, after reading a few threads about HR vs. MR, I can see it's not going to be as easy a decision as I thought. I'm 5'5, traveling solo for now, and don't plan to lay in 18 inches of insulation on the deck. :) I bet the MR would do just fine for me for the 18 months I plan on traveling in it.

Thanks for the info.
 

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The Transit Trailer Towing Guide is on the Matt Ford website under the Transit Customer site under the TOOLS section in case you want to see the MR specifications. There are more choices in finding a MR with the harder-to-find options and you may be able to find a NEW 2017 model still on the Ford dealer lot.
 
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