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Seized Triton 5.4

Hello everybody. I have had the strangest thing happen to my truck. It has been running great with no scary noises coming from the engine. I was taking my lunch break from work and drove to a local restaurant, went in, had lunch and came out and got ready to leave. Tried to crank the engine and it made about half a revolution and seized. I talked to the local Ford dealership and they said it may be hydrolocked from a leaky injectlor. I towed it in and got a call from them saying it was just plain seized and would need a new engine. It does have 195,000 miles on it but it seems that I would have had some kind of warning that there was a problem. I would love to hear some other possibitities. Perhaps someone has heard of something not so bad that can be fixed. Thanks for any help.

Was there oil in the crankcase? Did the oil pump fail? Something happened here.

Well, I’d get a second opinion on the need for a new engine. You report no noise at all. That kinda rules out just about everything in regard to oil pressure and or some fatigue factor. You experienced a catastrophic failure that was just about instantaneous.

I’d really have to get a detailed low down from the dealer. I really doubt that they did much investigating beyond trying to turn it by hand. I’d find a lower hourly rate mechanic to pull the pan and inspect the mains. This would even be odd since even spun bearings won’t act like this. It did indeed react like something filled one of the cylinders while you were eating. The engine cranked a half “wuh-” and that’s all she wrote. There were no reactive or dynamic forces involved to do any damage. If you see what I mean. The thing went from dead stop to just barely moving …to seized. I can’t see there being a whole lot wrong with it.

I’m not familiar with the engine. It could be possible that if there are coolant passages in the intake manifold that one let loose and found an open intake valve. That’s just pulling something out of my behind to suggest a possible source of the liquid if indeed it was hydrolocked.

I think that the recommendation from the dealer was to maximize the throughput of the agency. The parts manager gets a cut, the service manager, and the tech gets a shorter job instead of an open ticket while any machining is done to the block. It would be tie up the time/money for over a week depending on what needed to be done or ordered. With a remanufactured long block, you’ve got a day max between the start of the clock to the cheddar.

Engines do not sieze out of the blue and without warning.

Something is missing.

This engine is a overhead cam with a timing change. Maybe something is jammed, and or broke in the timing chain drive?

The ford dealer may see this engine as a tired old engine with 200K. Opening it up will only cascade into a complete rebuild, thus the recommendation of a new engine.

I did a stupid thing once. (Well, probably more than once.) I changed out an engine that was siezed per someone else’s diagnosis. When I went to start the “new” engine, it would not crank. Turns out the starter was bad. I put the “siezed” engine into another car. Last I knew it had 20K more miles on it.

GET A SECOND OPINION. Be sure they pull the spark plugs, which can be a pain of they weren’t put in with anti-sieze compound on their threads (which has nothing to do woth your engine siezing) and attempt to turn the engine over with a breaker bar on the crankshaft or some similar means.

If you DO need one, look for another engine at

I tried to spin it with a breaker bar…wouldn’t budge. I made sure the dealer pulled the plugs. Thanks

The oil was full and I never got a low oil pressure warning when it ran

Did you try going both ways? One thing that can cause an instant seize is a broken bolt, but they usually allow you to turn the engine backwards for a short distance.

Thanks to all that replied. When I got it to my shop, I decided to pull the starter and that is what it was. The starter had engaged then seized making it appear that the engine was seized. Changed it out and all is good.