The Ford F150 is one of the most popular trucks on the road. But certain models have been plagued by exhaust manifold issues that lead to frustrating and expensive repairs.
Is your Ford F150 affected by the exhaust manifold recall? Keep reading to find out.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything F150 owners need to know about the Ford F150 exhaust manifold recall including:
- What truck models and years are affected
- Common symptoms of a failing exhaust manifold
- Details of the Ford recall
- Repair options and costs
- Tips to prevent future exhaust manifold warping
- And more…
Whether your truck is covered by the recall or not, this guide will help you identify and fix any exhaust manifold problems fast.
Table of Contents
What Years and Models of Ford F150 Are Affected?
The exhaust manifold recall impacts certain Ford F150 pickup trucks equipped with 3.5L EcoBoost engines.
Specifically, the following Ford F150 models are affected:
- 2015-2017 model year F150s with 3.5L EcoBoost V6
- F150s built at the Dearborn Truck Plant from January 8, 2014 through December 1, 2016
- F150 trucks assembled at the Kansas City Plant from August 18, 2014 to December 1, 2016
So the recall covers Ford F150 trucks with the 3.5L EcoBoost engine produced during a nearly 3 year manufacturing window.
What Causes the Ford F150 Exhaust Manifold to Crack?
On the recalled F150s, the issue stems from the passenger side exhaust manifold warping and cracking over time. This allows hot exhaust gases to leak out.
Several factors contribute to the warping exhaust manifold problem:
- Extreme heat cycling – Repeated heating and cooling of the engine causes the exhaust manifold to expand and contract, weakening the casting over time.
- Improper torque – The manifold bolts may not have been tightened to the proper specs from the factory. Loose bolts allow movement and warping.
- Weakness in the original manifold castings – Porosity or impurities in the cast iron can lead to cracking under stress.
Prolonged exposure to high temperatures combined with any casting defects or uneven bolt tightening causes the passenger side manifold to eventually warp and allow exhaust leaks.
What are the Symptoms of a Failing Exhaust Manifold on Ford F150?
Drivers may notice the following common symptoms if their F150 exhaust manifold is cracked or warped:
- Ticking or rattling noise from the engine bay
- Strong exhaust smell in the cabin
- Check Engine light comes on
- Loss of engine power
- Oil leaks
- Engine overheating
The noise and exhaust smell are usually the first noticeable signs of an exhaust leak from a compromised manifold.
As the warping and cracks worsen over time, the exhaust smells and noise get more pronounced. Leaks can reduce engine performance and turbo efficiency if left unattended.
So if you notice any unusual sounds, smells, or engine issues, have the exhaust system inspected right away before problems cascade.
Is There a Ford F150 Exhaust Manifold Recall?
Yes, Ford has issued an official recall related to the problematic exhaust manifolds.
The Ford reference number for the exhaust manifold recall is 19S32.
Below are the key details on the F150 exhaust manifold recall:
- Recall issued – 2021-2023
- Affected vehicles – Certain 2015-2017 Ford F150 trucks with 3.5L EcoBoost engines
- Number of vehicles affected – Over 870,000 Ford F150s
- Recall cause – Cracks and leaks in the passenger side exhaust manifold
- Recall repair – Inspect exhaust manifolds, replace as needed, properly torque bolts, reprogram powertrain control module
Ford dealerships were notified of the recall and have been performing the needed repairs. The exhaust manifold recall notifications were sent out to registered owners of covered trucks in late 2020.
Owners of 2015-2017 F150s should contact their local Ford dealer to verify if their specific truck is included in the exhaust manifold recall. Providing your 17-digit VIN number is the best way to check eligibility.
How Much Does the Ford F150 Exhaust Manifold Recall Repair Cost?
The good news is that the exhaust manifold recall repair is covered 100% by Ford for affected vehicles, regardless of mileage or warranty status.
So there is no cost to owners of 2015-2017 Ford F150 trucks that are confirmed to be included in the exhaust manifold recall.
Ford dealers will:
- Inspect the exhaust manifolds for leaks, damage, or warping
- Replace the passenger side exhaust manifold if needed
- Properly torque the exhaust manifold bolts to spec
- Update the powertrain control module programming
Getting the free Ford recall repair is highly recommended to prevent further exhaust manifold cracking and expensive related repairs.
What if My Ford F150 Has Exhaust Manifold Issues But Isn’t Under Recall?
For Ford F150 trucks with exhaust manifold problems that are outside the recall window, owners will need to pay for repairs themselves.
Costs for replacing a single warped or leaking exhaust manifold typically range from $500-$1500 including parts and labor. The total can run higher if other components like the turbocharger were also damaged by an exhaust leak.
Aftermarket exhaust manifolds are an option for repairs outside of the recall. Brands like Mishimoto and Ford Performance offer upgraded exhaust manifold replacements that are more durable than the factory manifolds.
While pricier, aftermarket manifolds are often worth it for the increased reliability and performance especially if you plan to keep the truck long term. Ask your mechanic about aftermarket vs. OEM manifold quality and options.
How Can You Prevent Ford F150 Exhaust Manifold Warping?
Exhaust components like manifolds are wear items, but you can take steps to extend their lifespan:
- Allow the engine to fully warm up before aggressive driving. Don’t romp on the gas pedal when the motor is still cold.
- Avoid excessive idling which can lead to uneven manifold heating and cooling cycles.
- Consider installing an engine block heater for easier cold weather starts.
- Use a thermal coating spray on the manifolds to reduce heat absorption. Brands like Thermo-Tec make exhaust manifold coatings that resist cracking.
- Stay on top of engine maintenance like tune-ups, oil changes, fluid flushes, etc. A well-maintained engine puts less stress on components like the manifolds.
- Have any exhaust leaks, noise, or damage addressed immediately before it escalates. Small problems turn into big ones over time.
- Upgrade to aftermarket exhaust manifolds built out of higher grade materials. Factory manifolds can warp again after replacement.
While the extremely high temperatures these manifolds endure makes some warping inevitable, proper care and maintenance will maximize their longevity.
Will Ford Cover Exhaust Manifold Repairs Beyond the Recall Period?
For the specific 2015-2017 Ford F150 trucks covered by the exhaust manifold recall, Ford will replace cracked manifolds and reprogram PCMs up to 8 years or 80,000 miles from the original in-service date.
But for other F150s outside that recall range, exhaust manifold replacements are considered normal maintenance and repairs would not be covered by Ford.
You may be able to get some assistance from Ford on a case-by-case basis depending on factors like mileage and service history. Opening a case with Ford customer service could provide some goodwill coverage especially if you have been loyal to the brand. But in general, expect to pay out of pocket for exhaust manifold repairs outside the recall years.
Aftermarket warranties and extended repair plans can offset repair costs as well. Consider your options to reduce expenses should manifold issues arise outside the recall window.
Are Exhaust Manifold Problems Related to the Ford F150 Timing Chain Defect?
The F150 exhaust manifold recall is not directly affiliated with the widely reported timing chain problem on certain Ford EcoBoost engines. However, some of the same factors are at play in both issues.
Extreme engine heat cycles, imperfect manufacturing tolerances, and poor maintenance habits can contribute to both exhaust manifold cracking and premature timing chain stretch or breakage.
Keeping your engine well-maintained, allowing proper warmup time, addressing any overheating problems promptly, and not idling excessively are wise precautions against both exhaust leaks and timing chain defects.
But the two problems originate from different flaws in materials and quality control. The exhaust manifold issue stems from casting defects while the timing chain problem relates to tensioner and chain strength deficiencies. But both can be exacerbated by poor operating conditions.
Warning Signs of Exhaust Manifold Failure on Ford F150:
Here is a quick recap of the common symptoms associated with a cracked or warped exhaust manifold on your Ford F-150 truck:
- Ticking or rattling noise from engine bay
- Strong burning exhaust smell in cabin
- Check Engine light illumination
- Loss of engine power
- Engine oil leaks
- Engine overheating
Catching manifold problems early based on these warning signs can save you money and hassle down the road. Don’t ignore any unusual noises, smells, or performance changes originating from the engine.
Conclusion – Get Ford F150 Exhaust Manifolds Inspected Promptly
The Ford F150 exhaust manifold recall addresses what could become a very problematic and expensive issue for owners of the popular pickup.
We hope this detailed guide provides F150 owners with a thorough understanding of the recall, symptoms, repair costs, preventative maintenance tips, and related issues.
The most important takeaway is not to delay diagnosis and repairs if you notice any indications of exhaust manifold warping. addressing problems promptly reduces costs and prevents collateral damage to other components.
Check if your specific F150 is covered by the recall and get manufacturer-paid repairs done if eligible. For non-recall trucks, shop around for the best exhaust manifold replacement deals from Ford dealerships and independent shops. And consider upgrading to improved aftermarket manifolds to prevent repeat failures.
With proper care and maintenance, your hardworking Ford F150 can rack up the miles without major exhaust manifold headaches. Use the information in this article to stay ahead of any issues and understand your repair options.