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1995 F-150

Overall rating:  Product Rating: 4.0

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1995 Ford F150 XLT 4x4 Regular Cab 302 V-8 Automatic Transmission

by whatithinknow:      Oct 8, 2004 - Updated Dec 14, 2004

Product Rating: 3.0 Recommended: Yes 

Pros: See Review
Cons: See Review
The Bottom Line: If you can find a clean, well maintained southern driven vehicle, knowing the truck could have oil pan and brake line replacement problems, you should be OK buying one

Pros: Roomy, solid body, good door to cab fit, well appointed dash layout, comfortable inflatable lumbar support seat, adequate power when empty, plenty of ground clearance. I like the 4x4 touch-drive because you can shift on the fly under 35 MPH for 4x4 traction. A woman would like this feature.

Cons: Body rust around wheel wells, front fenders, and door thresholds, spare tire is difficult to access, oil pan rusts out in northern climates and must be replaced necessitating jacking up the engine, power steering hose replacement, front brake lines replacement (a brake line failed twice on me while driving-very dangerous condition), front u-joints replacement, front dual shock replacement (under warranty), rear ABS sensor replacement (under warranty), check engine light stays on, no passenger air bag. One more thing: the vehicle won't start (won't even turn over) sometimes if the weather is damp. This can be a big inconvenience which I presume is due to a wet distributor cap, wet solenoid(which is located, of all places, under the hood-fender side seam), or a faulty starter. For a 4x4, it's not perfect in deep snow either. I've been stuck in a snow bank several times with it. UPDATE: The brakes went out again and the rear brake line had to be replaced. I should have had them all replaced when the first one failed. Another new problem just surfaced in that the rear gas tank has rusted through and is now leaking raw gas on the spare tire under the truck bed. I pulled the spare, but it was too late. The raw gas melted the rubber so I not only have to replace the rear gas tank, but replace the spare tire as well.

I custom ordered this truck from the dealer nearly 10 years ago on my brother-in-laws Ford A-Plan. Since March of 1995, the mileage is about 68,000. My other vehicle is an 88 Mustang GT (see review). I switch off between the two vehicles seasonally, and whenever I move out of town to take a temp job (if another one should ever crop up). Basically, this truck is headed toward it's tenth New York state winter. Therefore the rust around the wheel wells is to be expected even though I have been religious about cleaning and waxing the body twice/year. The paint blisters that I am seeing indicate I still have time to act on repairing them before rusting through (I hope). Another issue is the cheesy chrome front bumper, where surface chrome seemed to "disappear" after about 4 years (just out of warranty). At least the bumper isn't rusting yet.

Mechanically, I am unhappy with this truck compared to Buicks and Chevys I have owned back in the 70s and 80s. Specifically, the oil pan rusted out and was quite expensive to replace. When the mechanic jacked up the engine to replace it, he neglected to re-tighten the bolts on the 4x4 transfer case. So for about a year I kept hearing an odd clunking sound under hard acceleration, bummer. I finally caught on to what was happening last spring when I saw the backed out transfer case bolts and snugged them down, problem solved. Gotta watch out for those Pep Boy mechanics. They work cheaper than the car dealers, but get a little sloppy sometimes.

The other thing that kinda bugs me is the check engine light. It started coming on about 6 years ago and never goes off. I decided long ago to ignore it since I try to avoid the dealer's service departments. I think they all are out to gouge their customers and have become very smooth in their approach to doing so. Maybe someday it will burn out on it's own anyway. Beware that in New York state this condition (check engine light on) is not allowed to pass their annual vehicle inspection on 1996 and newer vehicles. Since this truck is a 1995, it's of no consequence. Another point is regarding the Lemon Law administered by the New York State Attorney General's office. The dealer gets 4 attempts or a total of 30 days to fix a known problem under warranty. If they fail, the purchaser gets a new vehicle replacement or a cash award settlement.

Something amusing about Firestone Wilderness AT tires: I put a new set on the truck in April 1999 and they still have about 1/2 the tread left after 42,000 miles. I tried twice to have them replaced under Firestone's replacement campaign, but they were made after the date where the factory recognized internally that they had a problem, so I took a chance and left them on. That was 4 1/2 years ago. So far, so good.

Below I've listed the major repair items I've had to address (oil changes not shown):

050504 67196 Install 2 rear shocks, Monroe Sensa-matic, replace brake line from passenger side
042604 67145 Install 4 front shocks, Monroe Sensa-matic
103003 63729 Replace starter, defective power steering pressure hose 2nd attempt
101703 63591 Replace primary brake pressure tubing from master cylinder, driver's side
091503 63267 Replace power steering pressure hose
050403 60958 Replace license plate light
030903 60410 NEW OIL PAN, GASKET
090301 50527 SERPENTINE BELT
022399 26500 NEW TIRES - Firestone Wilderness AT

To summarize, my son-in-law has a 95 Chevy Silverado 4x4 extended cab and it also has the leaky oil problem and a rusted hood. They all have their own little idiosyncrasies.

Amount Paid (US$): 18,400
Condition: New
Model Year: 1995
Model and Options: XLT, AOD transmission, 4x4 touch drive,trailer towing package, tach,
Product Rating: 3.0
Recommended: Yes 
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