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What to Look for '97 F250?

Discussion in 'Ford Trucks' started by frostypuck, Mar 14, 2008.

  1. frostypuck

    frostypuck Member
    Messages: 54

    Hi all,

    I'm going to look at a 97 F250 over the weekend. It's the old body style. Owner says he's replaced the exhaust manifolds, and other minor stuff like brakes etc.
    For a 100K mile truck, are there any other things to be on the lookout for? It's in New England, so I'll be looking for rusted out floors, frame exhaust and stuff and I'll test drive it to check for tranny or 4wd problems, but is there something I should be keeping in the back of my head to check out?
    Thanks guys,
    Chris in Boston
  2. StoneDevil

    StoneDevil Senior Member
    Messages: 516

    i would check all fuild levels and feel the oil to see if it gritty and if it is the internal wearing is occuring I.E rear end, tranny , engine oil etc.
  3. frostypuck

    frostypuck Member
    Messages: 54

    Thanks, Stone Devil
    Good answer, even if you are a Pens fan.

    Chris in Boston
  4. flashinglight

    flashinglight Junior Member
    from maine
    Messages: 25

    The only thing i did to my 97 ford F-250 HD 5.8L was a new muffler and tail pipes. I also changed the plugs and wires--its a good going truck for the year.
  5. nickv13412

    nickv13412 Senior Member
    Messages: 621

    check the radiator support, they rust out on the OBS fords.
  6. chas4x4

    chas4x4 Senior Member
    Messages: 101

    97 F250

    I have the same truck check the fuel tanks they tend to rust and leak,I also had to change the oil pan a very weak point and expensive to replace aand a major project.
  7. KGRlandscapeing

    KGRlandscapeing 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,660

    lets see we put brakes on our new tank in the back plug wires sitll have a miss i think. its got an O2 sensor thats bad manifold leak. and a bad ground and the starter is starting to act up. all in all a good truck nothing to major
  8. frostypuck

    frostypuck Member
    Messages: 54

    Good replies guys, I'll keep an eye out for all these things. Seems like all the typical Ford weak spots, nothing astounding.
    Thanks very much,
  9. KGRlandscapeing

    KGRlandscapeing 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,660

    nope there pretty simple all in all a very good truck
  10. MrCarlson

    MrCarlson Junior Member
    from MM
    Messages: 18

    Don't forget to look at the front ball joints. They have a tendancy of wearing and the tops of the tires will angle in towards the truck when sitting at rest. Not too expensive to fix, but good for negotiating price. ;-)

    I am a pretty big 97 F250 fan, being the last of the old body styles, the bang for the buck on them is excellent.

    Matt Carlson
    "Knowledge is HorsePower"
    97 F250 Powerstroke, 9'2" Boss V, Tommy Lift
  11. beaver2

    beaver2 Member
    Messages: 62

    I'd look for a f-350. The f-250's came equipped with a dana 50 twin traction beam which causes a lot of headaches. The f350's come with a dana 60 solid front.

    I bought a 1990 f-250 diesel a few years ago, and finally upgraded to the dana 60. The conversion is easy, but the parts are expensive. Originally I was not going to do the conversion, but I ran into a really cheap kingpin dana 60. The axle sat around for a while and when the 4wd quit working I decided to convert it.

    Total cost for my conversion was around $1500.00 which included new tie rod ends, synthetic fluid, inner and outer hub bearings, rear pinion seal and redi-sleeve, u joints, calipers, dust shields (old ones rotted out), rotors, paint, leaf springs (3400 lb capacity a piece), timbrens, grade 8 hardware, trac-bar, and trac bar mount. The trac bar mount was incredibly hard to find, I had to get one off of some guy who lifted his truck. It rides rough but carries weight really nice.
  12. frostypuck

    frostypuck Member
    Messages: 54

    Thanks for the info on the F350, but I have one of those now, and am looking to get rid of it.
    The 250 will suit my needs better, plus there's very few SRW F350's of the late '90's vintage kicking around here. The few F350's that aren't dumps, are Crew Cabs. At least in my market.
    Chris in Boston
  13. frostypuck

    frostypuck Member
    Messages: 54

    Here's a pic of the truck I ended up buying. No major issues, 8 ft. MM.
    Thanks for all the help,
    Chris in Boston

  14. DEVUNK88

    DEVUNK88 Junior Member
    Messages: 5

    I have that same vehicle, white with a 351 under the hood.
    1 get some descent tires, I run wild country RVT 275/ 75 in the back
    wild country TXR in the front
    2. plenty of weight in the back at least 1500 lbs
    3 . check your ground wires
    4. make sure that your overdrive light is not blinking

    I may have had a rare case, but the E4OD transmission is great cept for the wires running
    into it. they are constantly corroding from salt, which caused several trips to the shop
    so bad that the short circut caused by the corroded wires were causing the motor to flood and not run. so heads up
    other than that, good tires, and good wieght, nothing will stop you
  15. frostypuck

    frostypuck Member
    Messages: 54

    Thanks Devunk,
    All in all, the truck's been good, aside from I just did ball joints and the axle u-joints which were waaaaay too expensive in my opinion.
    chris in Boston