How to Change Coolant In Ford F-150? Step-By-Step Guide

Proper maintenance of your Ford F-150 is essential to keep it running smoothly and ensure its longevity. 

One crucial aspect of maintenance is changing the coolant, which helps regulate engine temperature and prevent overheating. If you’re looking to perform this task yourself and save on dealership or mechanic costs, this step-by-step guide is here to assist you.

In this article, we will provide you with a detailed walkthrough of how to change the coolant in your Ford F-150. Also, you will find out how to check coolant level in F-150, and which coolant does your truck use. 

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Changing Coolant in F-150: Key Takeaways 

How to Change Coolant In Ford F-150? Step-By-Step Guide

You can change your F-150 coolant by following 13 steps written in the paragraph just below this one.

Step-By-Step Guide: Changing Coolant In F-150

First, there are some tools required for the task:

  • Safety goggles
  • Protective rubber gloves
  • Ratchet with a 17mm socket
  • Open-end wrench (19mm)
  • Piece of 1/2-inch inner diameter hose (any type)
  • Appropriate drain pan
  • Funnel
  • Cleaning rags or paper towels
  • Loctite liquid (optional)

You will also need a few parts:

  • Two jugs of high-quality antifreeze, preferably low phosphate (4 liters or 1 gallon each)
  • Two jugs of distilled water (4 liters or 1 gallon each)

To change coolant in your F-150, it will take you approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on individual pace. Draining the coolant can be a time-consuming step, as Blue Oval Tech noted.

  1. Allow the vehicle to cool down for at least 30 minutes before starting to avoid potential burns from hot coolant.
  2. Position a drain pan beneath the passenger side front wheel well.
  3. Open the coolant expansion tank to release air pressure and aid in draining the system.
  4. Remove the coolant cap.
  5. Locate the drain spigot on the bottom of the radiator inside the engine compartment, specifically on the passenger side.
  6. Attach a 1/2-inch hose, approximately 6-12 inches long, to the spigot’s spout pointing towards the passenger side. Use a 19mm open wrench to loosen the white drain bolt, ensuring that the drain pan catches the coolant. Some coolant may leak from the spigot drain bolt as well.
  7. Allow the coolant to drain completely.
  8. Flush out the expansion tank using a garden hose and let it drain as well.
  9. Once the draining is finished, remove the hose from the spigot and tighten the drain bolt, avoiding over-tightening (1/16 of a turn maximum as it is made of plastic).
  10. Locate the drain plug on the block, typically found below the rear-most frost plug on the driver’s side of the engine block. Use a 17mm socket and wrench to remove it, taking caution due to the use of loctite and wearing protective leather gloves.
  11. Ensure the drain pan is positioned beneath the block before fully removing the plug. Apply loctite to the drain plug threads after cleaning and drying them. Re-insert the plug securely.
  12. Begin filling the coolant using a funnel. Start with two jugs of antifreeze and continue with distilled water until the system is full. Allow the engine to reach operating temperature and recheck the coolant level.
  13. If the engine does not heat up quickly, you can drive around or to a nearby location and then recheck the level. Use caution when opening the coolant expansion chamber cap while the engine is hot, as it can be dangerous. If necessary, cover the cap with rags and open it slowly to release pressure. If coolant rushes out, close it immediately. Once the pressure is released, it can be safely opened.

How to Check Coolant Level in Ford F-150? 

The first step is to inspect the coolant reservoir tank, which is typically a transparent or white container located at the top of the engine compartment. The tank will have a “Full” line or indicator, and the coolant level should be at or near this mark.

Additionally, it is advisable to check the coolant level in the radiator. Although the radiator is not transparent, upon removing the cap, you should be able to observe the coolant inside. The radiator should always contain an adequate amount of coolant, reaching up to the cap.

However, it is crucial not to open the radiator cap if it feels warm to the touch.

What Coolant Does a Ford F-150 Use? 

The Ford F-150 typically uses Motorcraft Premium Gold Engine Coolant or an equivalent coolant that meets the specifications outlined in the owner’s manual. 

The Motorcraft Premium Gold Engine Coolant is an ethylene glycol-based coolant with a unique formulation designed to provide long-lasting protection against freezing, boiling, and corrosion. It is available as a pre-mixed 50/50 coolant and can be easily identified by its distinctive yellow color. 

When replacing coolant in a Ford F-150, it is recommended to use the specified coolant type and adhere to the proper mixing ratios as indicated in the owner’s manual to maintain the optimal cooling system performance.

That’s it! Now you know how to check coolant level, how to change it, and which one you should use. 

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