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Ford F-150 Raptor: All Common Problems You Should Know

What kind of problems does an American-made Ford F-150 Raptor normally have? In this blog, we’ve outlined all the most important things you should watch for when you’re in the market for a Raptor. However, let’s first start with a quick answer:

Most commonly, the Ford F-150 Raptor has problems with oil leaks because of a bad oil pan. Also, the transmission can start to shift too rough, or several parts in the car can start to develop rattles (e.g., the wastegate actuator). The infotainment system has several problems, and the panoramic sunroof and water sprayer may stop working.

However, that doesn’t tell the whole story. In the rest of the article, we’ll discuss every single problem in detail. Furthermore, we’ll tell you how to identify it, fix it and how much it costs to fix. Read on!

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Leaks

The Oil Pan Is Made Of Plastic

The earlier models of the Raptor had the oil pan made of plastic, and because of that, oil spills were common, and the pan had to be replaced with the OEM or aftermarket ones. However, from 2018 onwards, this oil pan was made of aluminum. Ford knew about this issue, and “not so surprisingly” there was no recall on this.

Well, it’s not like Ford didn’t make a recall, there were dozens of recalls, and the F-150 lineup is the most notorious of all. The TSB count went over one thousand six hundred, the highest compared to any other Ford lineup. The Raptor had fewer issues, though, as it did have a lot of high-performance stuff, except for the wiring harnesses. 

The cost to replace the oil pan is around $600, so make sure to check for any leakages under the truck and inside the engine bay.

A Catch Can Is Highly Recommended Because Of The Turbos.

In the second gen, we have an EcoBoost 3.5 L twin-turbo V6 instead of the naturally aspirated 6.2L V8 that came in gen 1. This turbo requires a “Catch Can” that doesn’t come factory-fitted, so you must look for the aftermarket one.

The problem arises because of the turbo. The normal blow-by wouldn’t be adequate to push the fluids out of the gaskets, but with a turbocharged engine, that blow-by is quite a lot, forcing its way into the crankcase (open spaces in the engine), causing the positive crankcase ventilation (PVC) to lose its job.

With all of that pressure buildup, the oil leakage would be unstoppable, not that the gaskets are blown (they might be), but there would be leakages even if they are not blown. Another way your truck can leak oil is to have

●       bad valve stem seals

●       worn-out piston rings

●       bad head gasket

With a set of Catch Cans, we can reinforce and rejuvenate the PVC by manipulating the pressure on both sides, and congratulations! No more leaks. A proper kit will cost around $500.

Transmission Issues

Raptor Would Jerk While Shifting Gears In Parking

Garage shifts are a common occurrence which means that the Raptor would jerk while shifting gears in parking, i.e., drive to reverse, neutral to drive, etc. The most annoying feature in the earlier 2nd gen ford raptors is “the adaptive learning mechanism” for the 10-speed automatic transmission.

It is supposed to get better after it leaned the way a driver would drive and know which gear to be in, but even after spending a couple of hundred miles hoping for it to understand you, and even if it learns, you make one mistake of changing the battery or unplugging it, all of that hard work will go down to nothing.  

The ECU tuning can be done DIY as plenty of aftermarket devices are available that give us peace of mind and saves us from a lot of grinding. A proper working tool will cost around $1000, which is worth it because of the freedom you acquire with it. You would be able to tune the Raptor with whichever setting you desire, whether the Baja setting or normal cruise setting, along with many others.

ECU Is Tuned But Still Have Jerky Shifts

Garage shifts might be misinterpreted as a valve body issue. Make sure first to check the ECU’s latest software update. The culprit would be the ” Valve Body ” if the problem doesn’t go away after the ECU tuning, then the culprit would be the “Valve Body.”

Although the earlier gen models had a problem with 1-2 gear shifts (thuds), the reason being the cold transmission. This problem usually goes away after adequately warming up the engine.

Clunking Noises

Waste Gate rattle

This is one of the common rattles heard in the Raptor coming from the wastegate actuator control arm/clip. These are notorious for causing rattles all over the automotive world. It’s not a Raptor-specific problem but more of a wastegate actuator thing that happens in all kinds of vehicles having a turbo.

You can have a rubber holding or a clip from any hardware store to hold the loose clip in place and stop this annoying rattle. Make sure not to completely block the movement of the actuator as it will damage the control arm and go to heaven. 

There could be a lot of possible reasons for the rattling and clunking noises in the Ford Raptor. The front suspension clunking is the most obvious, which has already been discussed in detail.

Squeaking and clunking from the rear

The most probable reason for these noises can be the driveshaft yoke. These yokes require lubrication and greasing; if not properly treated, they will dry up and cause these rattles. It is recommended to have frequent lubrication and greasing, especially after rough offroad sessions. If left unchecked, this fix will cost you around $900.

Make sure to have it checked and lubed up at every appointment with a mechanic. Once it’s damaged, you won’t get rid of the noise even after the lubrication. The fresh lubricant might reduce the noise to some extent, but it won’t solve the problem; the clunk will come back to annoy you.

Uncontrolled Feeling On Bumps And Turns And Clunking Noises

Ford decided to put the polyurethane damper into the Raptor instead of the hydraulic one, which often poses a problem and causes instability while turning and going over bumps. Another concern is the Fox shock rebuild requirement that often goes unchecked.

The high-performance Fox shocks might also have a particular sound of their own which is normal, but if the condition is bad and the ride is harsh, then It’s the shocks. It would be best if you had a rebuild. If overlooked, it can cause considerable damage to other suspension components and would affect the ride quality.

If the shocks are not the issue, the dampers are not the issue, and you still have an unstable truck, the most probable cause would be the front upper control arm where Ford had cut some corners. The factory ones are not up to the mark as they have weak ball joints and start rattling after a few thousand miles on the clock.

It is also recommended to go for the better after-market Uniball Upper Arms. They will cost around $800 and would be worth the price. A damper/strut would cost around $600 to replace, and the Fox shock rebuild cost for the complete set is around $550-$800, depending on the model year.

Engine Problem / Cam Phaser Knock

Listen to any out-of-ordinary sounds, especially during startup and idle. Leave it on idle for some time, and listen to any diesel-like sounds or other shaking noises.

If you are listening to a rattling and vibrating noise during idle, this rattling, which is most prominent during cold start, is due to the cam phaser problem, and it arises due to the lack of oil during startup. A revised tune from Ford was given to increase the duty cycle for extra oiling on each start, which solved this problem. 

If this issue is overlooked, the Variable Control Timing “VCT” solenoids are done for, and the ECU won’t be able to manage the phasers, and then your engine is done for. So it is recommended at each periodic maintenance to undergo a refresh on the factory tune that ensures all features are running on the latest software update.   

Interior Problems

The Infotainment Issue

The infotainment system on the Ford Raptor is notorious, so much so that the Raptor community says we are better off without the screen, and the buyer in the second-hand market wouldn’t be bothered to have the gen 1 without the infotainment feature. On top of that, it would save some bucks as well.

The infotainment in the case of Ford is the MFT short for My Ford Touch. Now, this system has a lot of issues:

  • Slow Navigation
  • Bluetooth connectivity problem.
  • Slow Audio, sometimes freezes
  • Phone calls won’t end on the MFT while they have ended on the phone

In short, a lot of lag. Several after-market mods claim to solve this issue. We recommend that all the older versions should have the latest software update, recommended by Ford. Several aftermarket tuning tools can do this job as well. 

Doesn’t Have A 360 Camera

Even though the size of the Raptor is huge, unfortunately, we didn’t get a 360-degree camera from the factory in the earlier models. Life would be much easier to maneuver in this huge truck only if we had a 360-degree view. But it will become a double-edged sword, as it would devalue your truck because of the holes needed to be drilled for placing these aftermarket cameras.

Air Conditioning Not Working

In the 1st gen models, Air conditioning is not the best, to say at least. It had some issues cooling in and of itself; It was not up to the mark. The 1st gen had major compressor breakdowns, and you would probably see after-market compressors in the older trucks.

Corrosion Problem

Corrosion issues in the wires have been reported in the earlier models, and Ford does not cover that under warranty even if the truck has always been driven on dry paved roads. This is due to the weak wiring harness that Ford put in these trucks. The wires are so thin that the slightest moisture can damage these wires. Thus, we also see many other issues related to the fuses and the wiring harnesses.

Now it’s primarily the wiring problem and not the corrosion problem, but dealerships wouldn’t cover that under warranty.

Exterior Problems

The Panoramic Sunroof Is Known To Fail

Once the lid is opened, it’s like inviting the problem to the doorsteps. These panoramic roofs, no matter the brand, are prone to fail. They are extremely delicate and would stop working without warning.

It is highly recommended not to open the lid completely or an edge of it to get some air on the Raptor. The shades are okay to be moved, but if the lid itself is moved and gets stuck, then it won’t go back where it belongs, so it’s better not to play with it. The dealerships ask for a fortune to fix these things.

It is also advised to check for the seals whether they can keep the water away or not. Just pour some water on the top and see if it seeps down the roof; if yes, then you would need to change the seals, which by the way, are not that expensive. The labor for this job is expensive, more than $500.

The Water Sprayer Not Working

This is a common occurrence for the F-150 lineup, and the Raptor is no exception. The water line often clogs up, and the sprayer wouldn’t work, and even if the repair is adequately done, the problem is not guaranteed to go away; it may persist.  

Electronics Problem

Won’t Start With First Ignition

It’s a fairly common one. The problem lies in the fuel pump fuse with a number 27 that has probably melted and needs replacement. This issue is most prominent in 2010-2014 Gen 1 models. Raptor’s fuses go out mainly because Ford cut some corners in its performance-oriented truck by putting a very fragile wiring harness that is not optimum for the job. Fuel pump problems are quite common in the F-150.

You will need a Ford fuse with a part number “EL3Z-14293-A” along with the kit that relocates the fuse to solve the problem. The fuse has to be relocated to block number 70 with a bigger load capacity as the lower capacity, “27,” couldn’t bear the load and got fried in the first place. You can get the fuse along with the relocating kit for about $30.

If you are not comfortable working with the wiring harnesses, you better have a professional do it as it requires cutting and soldering some wires. It might quickly escalate to a bigger problem.

Also read: Types Of Gas A Ford F-150 Uses (All Generations)                      

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