Jump to content
   
Mjrex

2016 TC LWB - Found a leak and looking for guidance on if I should run away or buy

Recommended Posts

Hi Transit Connect Team,

 

New member here.

With my past vehicles forums and the local community has been a life saver. Hope you can help me also.

 

I have been shopping for a Transit Connect Passenger LWB Van as a hybrid for persoal and business use. It seems perfect for family road trips and to haul furniture/appliances for my family's real estate business.

 

I found a used 2016 Transit connect with ~$61k miles (just out of power train warranty). Had the car checked out and overall the car looks good but I found a small leak on the bottom of the car and wanted to get the forums thoughts on if this is something I should run away from. Below I attached a picture. The leak seems small and the color looks brown but I am worries that leak could be from the transmission which I read could be nightmare on the TCs. Also not sure if this is large or small concern for these vehicles.

 

Also notice oil on the top of the engine by the spark plugs. Did not get a picture but the mechanic said that it did not concern him. 

 

Any guidance and thoughts are much appreciated.

 

Also anything else I should consider or be in the look out for as I do my research?

 

Thanks Team!

 

MJ


 

 

IMG_20190107_105117965.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
   

That's a lot of miles for a 2 year old car.  I think that you should keep looking.  The oil on top may be the valve  cover.  On the bottom, it is hard to say.  That is the lowest point,  oil could be coming from anywhere, and collecting there by way of gravity.  It doesn't look fresh in the photo.  Have the dealership fix everything before you buy it.  Or consider a new car with a warranty.  Since depreciation hasn't brought down pricing much in 2 years.  You surely have a good negotiation advantage.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Fifty150!

 

It is a lot of mile, the last owner used it for deliveries around town and put ~40K miles in a year.

Does a having a lot of miles in a short amount of time make is less valuable/more risky than lots of mile in a longer period of time?

I ask because the high millage gets me a good deal on the car and was thinking 60K miles is really not much if I consider the life of the car.

Thoughts?

 

Is the Valve cover a major issue/repair?

Good point on the gravity, when looking at the leak is seemed it was pretty isolated to that area so was thinking something there would be leaking. I will try to see if I can trace it back.

Do you think it could be transmission oil?

 

I am working with the dealer to determine what they can do to fix the issue. From your suggestion, it sounds like I should run if the dealer can't fix the leak.

 

Thanks again

 

MJ

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Changed the oil in my 2016 yesterday and noticed some oil in the same spot.  Looked like it was coming thru the threaded hole which I think is a weep hole.  Maybe from rear main seal?  Not sure but will keep an eye on it.  Bought my '16 new in late November 2017 and it has a little less than 13,000 miles on it.  I changed the oil between 5 and 6 thousand miles but didn't reset the oil service reminder.  It went on at 10,200 miles.  I did reset it after this oil change - no I'm not going to wait until it goes on to change the oil next time.  :-)

 

Oil on top of the engine may be from cam (valve) cover gasket leaking, sometimes the bolts on the cam cover are loose and all that is needed is a tightening of the bolts.  Ive had that happen a couple of times on VW's.  Doesn't look too difficult to change if needed.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

How did the TC drive, the oil on the bottom could be left over from changing the oil, where was the oil on the Valve cover. If the your mechanic has a good scan tool they should be able to see what the trouble code history  is.  How does it drive?  60000 miles is 60000 miles no mater how fast it was put on.  What does the rest of the car look like?  If the discount is big enough and it drive well , it could be a good deal. I would flush the transmission fluid if you do buy it.

Edited by G B L

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

60,000 miles puts you right near the point of major maintenance on just about every car.  Usually what shops like to call a "major tune up".  

 

All fluids.....engine, transmission, brake, steering, coolant.

All filters.....engine, air, cabin air.

Tires.  Brakes.  Spark plugs.  Coils.  

 

Delivery vehicle, depending on what they were hauling, would have more wear on axles and suspension.  

 

Spark plugs are cheap.  Coils are expensive.  A lot of people will tell you that you don't have to replace the coils.  I agree that the coils are probably still good.  By that same point of view, the spark plugs are probably still good.  Why replace either until you get a misfire, the coils & boots are damaged, and the spark plug breaks as you are trying to remove it?  I like doing things like that before there is a problem.  When the plugs will still ease out and new plugs can be installed with anti-seize.  Fresh dielectric grease, fresh boots, and fresh coils will optimize your driveability.  Same amount of labor and effort not to replace coils.  Some have been known to wait until 100,000 miles.  

 

Water pump, thermostat, belts, and hoses could be right around the corner.  These wear items can be changed prior to failure.  Better to install a new water pump, thermostat, belts, and hoses, so that you don't break down on the side of the road with your engine overheating.  But that's probably a little further down the road when you notice more wear on the belts and hoses.

 

This is usually how corner shops make a lot of money.  For the doupon price, good shops will at least install 4 new spark plugs.  Maybe not the right plugs.  Usually something like a copper spark plug that only cost them $1 or $3.  Not a double platinum or iridium that you would want.  They will actually pull the coils and plugs, look at them, and put the old parts right back in......then recommend that you replace them for an additional charge.  Then they will actually pull out the thermostat, look at it, and reinstall it.  Then "recommend" that you replace the part before it fails.  I like how they pull the air filter for inspection, to show you a dirty air filter.  All air filters are dirty, unless they are new and just came out of the package. 

 

The shops distribute those coupons for "tune-up" work, where mostly what they do is an inspection.  Best done with a customer waiting in the lounge.  That way, they can bring in the old parts, show you the wear condition to scare you, and advise how this could fail and be dangerous. Next thing you know, you are paying them whatever the coupon says, and all that they are doing is upselling you for additional service work.  

 

The worst scam is the oil change coupon.  Fine print will say something like, "4 cylinder car, 4 quarts 10w-40, standard filter".  In today's world, every car uses more than 4 quarts.  All extra oil is charged at $XX per quart.  No car uses 10W-40 oil.  Using the correct oil will cost you extra, at $XX per quart.  Better shops will offer you a choice of "you can save a few dollars with standard conventional oil, pay $XX for OEM grade synthetic blend which is what most cars came from the factory with, or upgrade with premium full synthetic".  Then they will ask you if you want something better than the $1 bulk oil filter.  Good shops will upsell you to OEM or factory grade, and premium such as Mobil 1 or K&N.  Then they pad the bill further with disposal, regulatory fees, shop supplies, et cetera.  I change my own oil.  I dispose of my oil at the local hazardous material collection site.  Never once, have I had to pay a fee to any government agency for this.  As a matter of fact, the shops who sell oil & perform oil changes are suppose to accept your oil, and they get paid for this.  When the oil is collected, the shop gets paid by the gallon for the oil, which they just charged you a disposal fee for.  I can only imagine that "state regulatory fee" is them charging you for their Bureau of Automotive Repair license.  Next time I have a drink, I'll check to see if the bar is charging me for their liquor license.  

 

Image result for tune up couponsImage result for tune up couponsRelated imageRelated imageRelated imageRelated image

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone

 

13 hours ago, PhotoAl said:

Changed the oil in my 2016 yesterday and noticed some oil in the same spot.  Looked like it was coming thru the threaded hole which I think is a weep hole.  Maybe from rear main seal?  Not sure but will keep an eye on it.  Bought my '16 new in late November 2017 and it has a little less than 13,000 miles on it.  I changed the oil between 5 and 6 thousand miles but didn't reset the oil service reminder.  It went on at 10,200 miles.  I did reset it after this oil change - no I'm not going to wait until it goes on to change the oil next time.  :-)

 

Oil on top of the engine may be from cam (valve) cover gasket leaking, sometimes the bolts on the cam cover are loose and all that is needed is a tightening of the bolts.  Ive had that happen a couple of times on VW's.  Doesn't look too difficult to change if needed.  

 

That is interesting, seemed simple then? The dealer that has it for sale also just did an oil change. The good thing for you is that you are still under power train warranty if in case anything is wrong.

 

10 hours ago, G B L said:

How did the TC drive, the oil on the bottom could be left over from changing the oil, where was the oil on the Valve cover. If the your mechanic has a good scan tool they should be able to see what the trouble code history  is.  How does it drive?  60000 miles is 60000 miles no mater how fast it was put on.  What does the rest of the car look like?  If the discount is big enough and it drive well , it could be a good deal. I would flush the transmission fluid if you do buy it.

 

The TC drove well, It accelerated well, not much road or engine noise in the cabin, slow to brake (the brakes were replaced and it could just be me getting use to a larger car - I could not make the sharp turns I am use to in the CTS).

 

On the valve cover, I took a quick look but I think it was between the ignition coils. The mechanic that looked at it was not really concerned. He seemed more concern about the oil on the bottom (he said worst case it a rear main seal). He also notices that the front axle was a little wet at boot and some fluid at right seal (attached picture).

 

I thought these vehicles had a life long transmission oil (something along the lines that it was sealed). Is the flush a maintenance item or and ease of mind item? How much would a flush cost for this car?

 

Thoughts?

 

3 hours ago, Fifty150 said:

60,000 miles puts you right near the point of major maintenance on just about every car.  Usually what shops like to call a "major tune up".  

 

All fluids.....engine, transmission, brake, steering, coolant.

All filters.....engine, air, cabin air.

Tires.  Brakes.  Spark plugs.  Coils.  

 

Delivery vehicle, depending on what they were hauling, would have more wear on axles and suspension.  

 

 

I am looking at the online ford maintenance schedule, are these fairly accurate? Does the TC require more attention the this? One of the selling point for TC was the minimal maintenance requirements. What is your experience?

 

image.thumb.png.d2be5ccce4fdf7ef029260a18ff113ef.png

IMG_20190107_105132319.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems the vehicle is ok. Your decision should be based on the cost savings of buying a used vehicle with 60k miles. Will the cost to repair any likely problems or necessary maintenance be more than the savings of buying a newer vehicle or one with less miles? For many of us who do our own maintenance and repair it makes sense to save the money up front. If we saved $3k on the purchase, that buys a lot of parts. If you pay a shop for repairs the math is worse.

 

If my budget was tight, I would negotiate a deal that factored in money to do some PM and minor repairs (brakes etc).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

They do make the claim that the transmission is 'lifetime' maintenance free  -  Your link is the first I've seen where they recommend a fluid change . . . . and at 150K!  Good luck with that!!

 

There are many documented transmission failures, nearly all of them with fewer miles than 150K.  I changed my fluid at 25K and will do it several more times before 150K

 

'Lifetime' means different things to people.  A failure at 100K must be a 'lifetime' to Ford

 

That said, I'm all about buying used vehicles and low mileage ones are my favorite.  A 2 or 3 year old vehicle with 10 or 15K on it can represent a significant savings.  The 2003 Mazda Protege 5 that our '14 TC replaced was bought in 2011 with 55K on it for 1/4th the new price.  We drove it 4 years, more than doubled the mileage on it and 'lost' only $2K when we sold it.  The guy we bought it from 'lost' about $.25 per mile for the miles he put on it  -  We 'lost less than a nickel for the miles we put on it.  You can't do that when you buy new

 

Don

Edited by Beta Don

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm all about buying used vehicles too, and while I don't look for high miles, I don't let 'em put me off, either... and because the value formulas use a fixed cents-per-mile price, you do save a lot as the miles rack up.   I go for 3-5 years old and up to 20k miles per year.   Note that I've mostly applied this to passenger cars, European ones at that... and when you find high miles on a passenger car they tend to be highway miles (unless Carfax indicates livery service).  Highway miles are best miles: few cold starts, steady speeds, light loads, not much accelerating and braking, clambering on and off the upholstery, etc.   

 

But in this case, you have an indication it was mostly used around town, presumably start/stop traffic.  With that I would be a little more interested in wear on the powertrain (are all the transmission shifts smooth and well-timed, up and down), brakes (easy to check, pads and rotors), body (above, below, and suspension), and interior.

 

/just bought a 2015 TC with 61k

//but CPO with warranty to 100k, so I'm not as brave as I sound

///and it's currently on a lift at the Ford dealer, with its tranny on the bench =:-0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Livery, delivery, patrol, and towing all qualify as "severe duty".  This follows a different maintenance schedule.  For some, it is measured in engine hours.  A patrol car could sit with the engine idling for extended periods.  A delivery vehicle or service vehicle, could go all shift without ever turning the engine off.  It used to be that if miles were low, such as a patrol car which sits more than it drives, then drives at wide open throttle......200 engine hours.  10 hour patrol shift sees about 8 hours of engine time.  You can do the math with the car being turned over from shift to shift, 7 days a week.  Your delivery van could have been driven like that.  My company car starts in the morning, and I don't turn off the ignition until the end of my shift.  Wherever I go, I simply leave the car running......because I am selfish, the boss pays for the gas, and i want that air conditioning to keep the ride comfortable for me.......just kidding.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, Fifty150 said:

60,000 miles puts you right near the point of major maintenance on just about every car.  Usually what shops like to call a "major tune up".  

 

My son's VW turbo made it 75,000 miles before it needed a major service - engine, clutch flywheel left driveshaft and that doesn't include the small stuff like fluids etc.  

 

On the other hand I guess I need to open the hood on my Volt and check the washer fluid, it has 60,000 miles on it and may be due for the 4th oil change in a year or so.  

 

I agree about buying used and usually do but the last 2 vehicles I've bought have been new.  Bought the Volt late in 2013, deep discount, + $7,500 tax credit + over $5,000 from wife in GM credit that she would let me spend on a Corvette.  OTD was about $21,000, could get anything near a nice in a used low mileage car plus operating costs have been cheap.  Bought the 2016 TC new in late November 2017.  Got lots off and it was only about $3 or $4 thousand more than a nice used 2016 with 15,000 miles on it.  I have those 15,000 miles and an additional year of warranty.  IMO when its that close then I will buy new.  When looking at used TC's it seems the prices don't vary much wether its a 14, 15 or 16 and sometimes the mileage doesn't appear to affect the price that much.  My son recently bought a Focus ST (hum, wonder if I could swap the wheels and tires with my TC?) again the interesting thing was the used prices were not that much lower than the discounted new prices.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

New cars are nice.  Every advantage of being the 1st & only owner, the warranty, the new car smell.  

 

Only good if you can afford it.  

 

$4,000 to $5,000 may not be much of a difference to one person, but from another perspective, it could be a lot.  

 

I bought used cars most of my life.  I got to spend a lot of time and money on keeping those cars running. 

 

 

The lesson I learned after several decades....When you spend $5,000 to buy the car, then spend $10,000 to keep it running.....is everyone done laughing yet?  

 

But I get it.  I still like buying used, if it's a good deal, the car is in good condition, and it serves the same purpose for a lot less money.  Ultimately, it's your decision to spend $$$XXX on that particular car, knowing that you see obvious issues.  

 

I like used cars.  I would hold off for a used car with lower miles and less wear.  Either way, you will be saving the depreciation lost by anyone who drives a new car off the lot.  I suspect that with as many Transit Connects sold, there will be a lot more of them turning up on the used car market.  

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am looking at the online ford maintenance schedule, are these fairly accurate? Does the TC require more attention the this? One of the selling point for TC was the minimal maintenance requirements. What is your experience ? 

If you look at the guide is says  a 4 speed transmission, Not sure what you are looking at but it does not go with the TC you are looking at.

There is a fairly large incidence of the left half shaft leaking at the transmission  seal. This transmission shifts well, but it works hard , The Transmission fluid need to be changed regularly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Commercial use requires more maintenance.   It all depends on who is driving.  But believe that no transmission is maintenance free.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Everyone!

 

I decided against this one.

Will keep shopping and exploring

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good call.  Don't spend your hard earned money on something that you are not happy with.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×