Used truck shopping. Diesel or gas? Opinions please

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9/1/2016 11:13 PM

The wife wants to get a truck. What do you have? We are thinking used and are hoping to not spend over $15,000. I know this means higher mileage probably. Diesel or unleaded? 4x4 for sure as we drive in the Sierra's in the winter. Are diesels expensive to fix? My stepdad has a 2002 Tundra that is going pretty strong still. I am so confused please help

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9/2/2016 12:34 AM

If you will be towing I would go diesel. I pulled a trailer with our clapped out 92 Chevy gas truck and it averaged about 5 mpg.

Maintenance on a diesel will be more expensive because the work is more specialized.

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9/2/2016 5:55 AM

Well you can count on maintenance of a diesel being at leat 2 times as much. Not just you're average Joe can work on a diesel successfully.

As maintenence goes. I could change the oil in my f150 for around 50 bucks. I can't even change the oil in my powerstroke for less than 100 (takes almost 4 gallons of oil) but on the other hand oil change intervals are longer with diesels. And all parts are more expensive for diesels.

With that being said. I don't think I could ever go dark to a gasser. Diesels are just too much fun. Tons of power. And towing is absolutely incredible.

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9/2/2016 5:59 AM

But don't be stupid like alot of people around my area that buy diesel with 250k miles on them thinking it's fine. Yes the engines run forever if taken care of properly. But injectors don't (the cheapest I've been able to find injectors for my truck is over 200 a piece. If I do the labor myself)
And all the other parts like suspension components. Drive components. Trans all that good stuff.

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9/2/2016 8:06 AM

If you're on a $15k budget, you should consider the repair and maintenance costs of a diesel as they can quickly equal that. My buddy just sunk $8000 into his 05 F350 for a couple of injectors, brake lines and one other big ticket item that I can't remember. Plus, $15K will get you a much nicer gas truck. Will you be towing anything?

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9/2/2016 8:22 AM

If she just wants a 4x4 truck for no real truck reasons, get a Ranger. The 4 cylinders in the 2002+ are said to hit 30mpg with a stick. I got 32mpg in an old 4cyl, but it was 2wd and didn't have AC or PS and it was a stick.

If a 3/4 or 1 ton is actually NEEDED. Then gas doesn't make much sense. The added cost of a diesel is justifiable when towing 20,000lbs through the rockies. A big diesel doesn't make any sense if it's hardest job is hauling a couple dirt bikes to the track, or kids to the soccer field.

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9/2/2016 8:23 AM

I'm in the same boat ,my wife was just in a car accident and totalled her F150 , I'll probably just get another F150 ,around 2010ish with 4 wheel drive and 4 full size doors . I'm going gas because I don't haul anything significant, a couple bikes or a snowmobile maybe a small camper.

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9/2/2016 8:44 AM
Edited Date/Time: 7/16/2017 7:23 AM

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9/2/2016 8:54 AM

it will be hard to buy a good diesel truck under 15k. The only way I see that happening is if you go regular cab. Otherwise you're looking at either really old or really high miles.

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9/2/2016 8:59 AM
Edited Date/Time: 9/2/2016 8:59 AM

Ya, for that price point go gas if you aren't doing any crazy towing. Used 4x4 can be a crapshoot but there are things you can do to minimize the chance of getting F'd over. I can say I've had my 04 Ram since it had 16k on it and it has been a great truck for over 10 years now.

I just helped a buddy buy a used Toyota and he had no idea what to look at, here is what I did:
-check brakes (rotor gouges, pad life,etc)
-check all fluids under hood (dip stick isn't burnt, coolant isn't milky, etc)
-check tire wear patterns (scalloping)
-Jack up front and check tie rods/ball joints (play in wheel front to back or play laterally up/down)
-check driveshafts/difs for oil marks/leaks

I found one side to have a worn tie rod end and he used that a bit in negotiating the price and bought the truck.

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9/2/2016 9:04 AM

Long time friend is a Ford tech since we were in highschool he has worked at same place.

It is always full of diesels ,only one powerstroke I'd have ,it was the 7.3 I think. It was made by Allison or such for tractors.

The other sizes have problems.

But,I'd never have a diesel,the cost is double for everything like others have posted.

The gas Ford engines are rock solid. The 05 ish 3 valve has issues with a o ring on the cam chain tensioner block ,newer models eliminate the o ring and use the machine surface to seal.

I have a 2000 f250 crew with v10, rock solid.

Chevy still uses the old tired push rod setup,junk,

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9/2/2016 10:04 AM

MXD wrote:

If you're on a $15k budget, you should consider the repair and maintenance costs of a diesel as they can quickly equal that. My buddy just sunk $8000 into his 05 F350 for a couple of injectors, brake lines and one other big ticket item that I can't remember. Plus, $15K will get you a much nicer gas truck. Will you be towing anything?

Ok that freaked me out. $8000 sounds like a lot. That's like a brand new bike!!! Thank you for your help

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9/2/2016 10:06 AM

colintrax wrote:

If she just wants a 4x4 truck for no real truck reasons, get a Ranger. The 4 cylinders in the 2002+ are said to hit 30mpg with a stick. I got 32mpg in an old 4cyl, but it was 2wd and didn't have AC or PS and it was a stick.

If a 3/4 or 1 ton is actually NEEDED. Then gas doesn't make much sense. The added cost of a diesel is justifiable when towing 20,000lbs through the rockies. A big diesel doesn't make any sense if it's hardest job is hauling a couple dirt bikes to the track, or kids to the soccer field.

We are thinking full size. She wants 4 doors and some leg room. Our son is 8 but he is going to be taller than her soon and I think she is looking into the back seat for herself.

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9/2/2016 10:07 AM

MR. X wrote:

I'm in the same boat ,my wife was just in a car accident and totalled her F150 , I'll probably just get another F150 ,around 2010ish with 4 wheel drive and 4 full size doors . I'm going gas because I don't haul anything significant, a couple bikes or a snowmobile maybe a small camper.

Thank you. I think we are in a similar situation.

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9/2/2016 10:09 AM

Mini Elsinore wrote:

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I love XR's those things are sick and never go out of style!!!! My step dad has an '02 Tundra and has over 200,000 miles on it. It will not die. He even towed a hitch mounted Toy Hauler with that thing for a few years and still has had no major issues.

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9/2/2016 10:14 AM

seth505 wrote:

Ya, for that price point go gas if you aren't doing any crazy towing. Used 4x4 can be a crapshoot but there are things you can do to minimize the chance of getting F'd over. I can say I've had my 04 Ram since it had 16k on it and it has been a great truck for over 10 years now.

I just helped a buddy buy a used Toyota and he had no idea what to look at, here is what I did:
-check brakes (rotor gouges, pad life,etc)
-check all fluids under hood (dip stick isn't burnt, coolant isn't milky, etc)
-check tire wear patterns (scalloping)
-Jack up front and check tie rods/ball joints (play in wheel front to back or play laterally up/down)
-check driveshafts/difs for oil marks/leaks

I found one side to have a worn tie rod end and he used that a bit in negotiating the price and bought the truck.

Fortunately I have a friend who is a bit of a motor head and he has offered to help me look. I used to be under the hood, well engine cover, of my dad's 71 Econoline 200 back in the day. He was good with fixing that thing and some of it wore off on me. My wife and I have used car shopped before and she was looking at me like, "what the hell are you doing crawling underneath that thing?" Yeah babe it looks clean and shiny on the outside but see that oil and dirt blob there? No good.

Thank you for your time

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9/2/2016 10:16 AM

If you want leg room go with the Ford. I'm 510 and 285 and the backseat of my 07 f150 4 door was very comfortable

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9/2/2016 10:22 AM

hillbilly wrote:

Long time friend is a Ford tech since we were in highschool he has worked at same place.

It is always full of diesels ,only one powerstroke I'd have ,it was the 7.3 I think. It was made by Allison or such for tractors.

The other sizes have problems.

But,I'd never have a diesel,the cost is double for everything like others have posted.

The gas Ford engines are rock solid. The 05 ish 3 valve has issues with a o ring on the cam chain tensioner block ,newer models eliminate the o ring and use the machine surface to seal.

I have a 2000 f250 crew with v10, rock solid.

Chevy still uses the old tired push rod setup,junk,

I have no experience with diesel. I think a used truck in my price range the diesel is sort of freaking me out now. This will mostly be used for 2 bikes and maybe a 8x12 open trailer. My dad was a Chevy man. My step dad is Toyota. The yota is doing great at 200k.

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9/2/2016 10:46 AM

LittleDragon wrote:

We are thinking full size. She wants 4 doors and some leg room. Our son is 8 but he is going to be taller than her soon and I think she is looking into the back seat for herself.

My ranger suggestion was a little sarcastic, they're no good for moving more than 2 people. Awesome trucks for single people, but not so much for family. I was just pointing out there's no need for a super duty, take the insurance, fuel, and mantience savings of a smaller truck. You'll fit in more parking garages, and parking spots as a bonus. Look at F150s. Although the F150s in your price range will drink gas like a newer super duty.

I did the math with my brother when he was turnin 16. He wanted a big 4x4 diesel because it's cool. I showed him yearly costs of a 4cyl ranger, and a f250 with the 7.3 over something like 5 years. I included everything, tires (that last longer on a smaller vehicle) brakes (again last longer) oil changes, insurance, etc etc. Needless to say he ended up with a 2wd ranger, and with all the money he's saved he's been able to do what he wants with it. Projector, halo headlights, LED tail lights, regeared, 32" AT tires, speakers, exhaust, and more kid shit. That ranger gets him and his gf around just find, and the bed is big enough to haul his kayak. He's since thanked me for talking him out of the big diesel.
The difference between a F150 with the 4.6 V8 and a F250 with the 7.3 is probably enough to justify an older 125/200 for the "wife" or a good vacation.

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9/2/2016 3:06 PM

The end of the year is approaching and deals will be made on leftover inventory. My youngest son was looking at 100,000 mile Z71's for 20 grand plus back in 2012. Ended up finding a leftover Dodge Quad Cab 4x4 basic work truck with vinyl seats and rubber floor mat new on the lot here locally. Window sticker was almost $32,000.00 and we drove it off the lot for under $21,000.00. Brand new, full warranty and perfect for him to go fishing with. Put him some wheels and tires on it and leveled the front end. He traded it in last year and got $19,000.00 trade in.

So, depending on what exactly your needs are you might want to shop around a little.



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9/2/2016 4:12 PM

If you're on a tight budget, I would not look at diesels......they are an awesome motor to have in a truck, but when they go down, it can get really expensive. With all the emissions shit they put on them now to make them not smoke, I would probably not touch one with high miles on it. Diesel breakdowns cost thousands, not hundreds. And if you fry an engine, you'll be above 10 thousand unbelievably quickly ......FYI

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9/2/2016 4:24 PM

hillbilly wrote:

Long time friend is a Ford tech since we were in highschool he has worked at same place.

It is always full of diesels ,only one powerstroke I'd have ,it was the 7.3 I think. It was made by Allison or such for tractors.

The other sizes have problems.

But,I'd never have a diesel,the cost is double for everything like others have posted.

The gas Ford engines are rock solid. The 05 ish 3 valve has issues with a o ring on the cam chain tensioner block ,newer models eliminate the o ring and use the machine surface to seal.

I have a 2000 f250 crew with v10, rock solid.

Chevy still uses the old tired push rod setup,junk,

LittleDragon wrote:

I have no experience with diesel. I think a used truck in my price range the diesel is sort of freaking me out now. This will mostly be used for 2 bikes and maybe a 8x12 open trailer. My dad was a Chevy man. My step dad is Toyota. The yota is doing great at 200k.

2 bikes and an open 8X12 trailer...on a $15K budget? No brainer...GAS!

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9/2/2016 5:04 PM

Tacoma...

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The name on the rock is Arch...Arch Stanton.

9/2/2016 5:34 PM

I bought a 2005 F350 utility 6.0 diesel for 15.7K. It was new but a left over and a utility. Sold it with 45K miles because motor was unreliable. Later bought a 6.0 Chevy has utility. Truck itself is a bit weak but so far the engine is good. Now I bought another truck just because it was a good deal. 1999 F250 reg cab long bed 5.4 gas with 130K miles $1600! A friend calls and says the company where he works is replacing their shop truck. The Ford dealer is offering $1600 on trade so he calls and asks if I want to but it for $1600. Of course I do. All the years I have owned it I have only had to reaplace the TPS. Not bad.

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9/4/2016 1:46 PM

Try to find a clean F150 Ecoboost 3.5.
Unless you're towing over 10,000 lbs.

Newer diesels 07 and up arent much if any better mileage than gas so unless you're towing heavy no real need and you will never recoup the extra costs or maintainence.
Id rather have a Gasser F250 or 6.4 Hemi. And to make things worse, diesel is rarely cheaper at the pump unlike the 90s and early 2000s.

The only thing I dont like is 1/2 tons its hard to find a true crew cab with at least a 6 or 6.5 foot bed.

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9/4/2016 10:05 PM

newmann wrote:

The end of the year is approaching and deals will be made on leftover inventory. My youngest son was looking at 100,000 mile Z71's for 20 grand plus back in 2012. Ended up finding a leftover Dodge Quad Cab 4x4 basic work truck with vinyl seats and rubber floor mat new on the lot here locally. Window sticker was almost $32,000.00 and we drove it off the lot for under $21,000.00. Brand new, full warranty and perfect for him to go fishing with. Put him some wheels and tires on it and leveled the front end. He traded it in last year and got $19,000.00 trade in.

So, depending on what exactly your needs are you might want to shop around a little.



That would be a sweet score!!!!!

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9/4/2016 10:10 PM

Skidaddle wrote:

Try to find a clean F150 Ecoboost 3.5.
Unless you're towing over 10,000 lbs.

Newer diesels 07 and up arent much if any better mileage than gas so unless you're towing heavy no real need and you will never recoup the extra costs or maintainence.
Id rather have a Gasser F250 or 6.4 Hemi. And to make things worse, diesel is rarely cheaper at the pump unlike the 90s and early 2000s.

The only thing I dont like is 1/2 tons its hard to find a true crew cab with at least a 6 or 6.5 foot bed.

Yeah the crew cab with that size bed is what we would like. I guess the brand is not totally important as it seems like each brand makes a good truck.

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9/5/2016 12:34 AM

BTW, what is the price of gas and diesel in mainstream US nowdays?

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9/5/2016 3:07 AM

Unless towing a lot, frequently, or putting big miles on - go gas. I might make an exception for a good deal on a 7.3l Ford, but its been 10+ years since they quit selling them.

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HAF

9/5/2016 7:13 AM

mark1960 wrote:

BTW, what is the price of gas and diesel in mainstream US nowdays?

In Sacramento it is around $2.60 for unleaded and Zi think I saw $2.40 for the diesel

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