If you’ve got a truck, you know how special they are. Cars? Meh. The truck is where it’s at, and if you’re serious about trucks you’re serious about your Ford trucks. The Ford F150, the Ford F250, and the FordF350 have long set the standard for America’s truck industry. Since they were launched in 1977, they’ve been the best-selling personal trucks in the country for 40 years in a row. And there’s good reason: consider the Ford F250 alone. It can haul at least 7,000 pounds and comes with a 385 horsepower, 6.2-liter V-8 engine standard.
If you have a Ford F350 or one of America’s other favorite trucks, you definitely want to get the most out of it. If you don’t have one, you might be thinking about getting one. In 2016 the sales of light trucks in America went up by 7%, accounting for nearly 61% of all vehicle sales. Whether you’re buying a new vehicle or checking out used trucks for sale, here’s some tips on how to keep your purchase working hard for you:
Don’t Ever Neglect the Oil Change
Whatever vehicle you have, having good quality oil regularly changed out is one of the keys to ensuring a long and healthy engine life. For the Ford F350 or others in the series, the recommendation is every six months or 7,500 miles. If you’re getting a used truck, or if you’re maintaining an older one, go ahead and change the oil filter every time you change the oil.
Don’t Neglect the Tires, Either
Rotate your tires every time you get the oil changed, and you’ll keep them from wearing unevenly. Uneven tires are hard on the drive train and on the tires. Give your suspension all the help you can and it’ll reward you with a long life of worry-free service. While you’re rotating, considering balancing the tires, too. Every time you run over a pothole, the tires get a little off balance, leading to wear on the suspension and greater uneven wear overall.
Keep Your Engine Cool
The Ford F250 and Ford F350 are huge workhorses. Their immense engines generate a lot of power, so make sure your engine coolant is always good quality and always topped off. Your engine will also love you for longer if you make sure it gets clean air. The air filter needs to be changed every 15,000 to 30,000 miles, depending on where you’re driving. The clean air not only makes your engine last longer, but also optimizes efficiency.
Know What You’re Putting Your Truck Through
Most manufacturers’ checklists for maintenance are based on fairly routine road conditions. This is unfortunate since most people haven’t gotten their Ford F350 just to drive it down a suburban street twice a day to and from work. If you’re carrying a lot of heavy loads, going to really dirty and dusty places, idling for long periods, or driving off-road a lot, your truck depends on you to take that into account and maintain it on a schedule appropriate to the wear and tear you put on it.
Your truck is a beloved workhorse, and just like an actual horse, the more you love and care for it, the longer and harder it’ll work for you. Take the time to do it right, and you’ll be driving your Ford F series truck into the sunset for years to come.