Spun bearing on 2018 Ford F150

Hey all you gearheads, I need some real help forming an opinion. Not a legal opinion per se, but to the causation of my issue. I offer you my thanks in advance for your input. Also, this is an oil related issue, so please don’t tell me in hindsight I should have gone to the dealer for my oil change, lol. I know that now, thanks…

Let me lay out the specifics

2018 Ford F150 XLT 3.3L
Apr. 1st 2020, got an oil change from full service shop, NOT a Jiffy Lybe type place… went straight home.
Apr 2nd, did some driving around town. 40 miles perhaps.
Apr 3rd, drove another 20 miles, spun a bearing.
Got car towed back to shop that evening, they were closed when I broke down.
The next morning, the tech took the truck into the engine bay, but they were unable to give me any solid answers.
Same day, had truck towed to Ford, they hook up the diagnostic machine, and it gave them 3 codes as the result. I will attach Ford’s findings to this post at the end.

P0012 camshaft position timing
P0305 Cylinder 5 misfire
P0316 misfire on first start

They tried to submit a warranty claim, but the regional engineer rejected it, after finding out that I had gotten an oil change 2 days prior. The findings for denial was lack of lubrication caused engine failure.

The shop alleges Ford did not do a thorough enough diagnostic, they basically wanted Ford to do a complete teardown.
So after some back and forth, I was tricked because of being naive and trusting, that the shop would submit an insurance claim, and all I would need to do is get it towed back to their shop to be repaired. I realize now that was a terrible call.

Once the shop received the truck, instead of dropping an engine like we had agreed, they teardown the engine, and they allege the oil pump solenoid was faulty. At first they were claiming oil pump, but now they say the oil pump control solenoid went bad.

I did some of my own research, to see what codes come up when oil pump solenoids go bad. I will share a couple of them with you.

Here is Ford’s findings

My truck calls for 6 quarts of oil, invoice shows 5.

I have a pic but the forum will only allow 1 pic in my post.

I am very tired and weary, this has been going on for 1 month and 3 weeks, back and forth between the shop and the dealer. Just tell me what you think, but dont tell me I should have gone to the dealer for an oil change, because that is obvious.

Mechanic at the shop did a voltage test on the solenoid, it produced 0.0 OHMS. He did the same test on a good solenoid, and it produced some OHMS, can’t remember the number, but it wasn’t 0.0. It was above 3.0 I believe.

Thank you


1 quart low shouldn’t cause a spun bearing, in my opinion


Thank you for replying. If the pump solenoid was bad, would Ford have received codes, upon doing the diags?

Does this vehicle have a dipstick? Did you check the oil the moment it started to knock? Was there oil in it when the engine malfunctioned? Where is the truck now? Did you authorize the dealer to replace the engine at your expense, or was this just a recommendation?

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The truck is at the shop now, not the dealer. After an oil change, the oil is really clear so I couldn’t really tell. I have full synthetic blend oil in this truck, and I have 0 experience with that kind of oil.

Side note: Even if having 5 quarts would not cause a spun bearing, it still caused my warranty to be voided.

I know, I know, should have gone to the dealer. Broken records I swear.

I do not see how Ford can deny warranty coverage and claim that “the vehicle was driven with little to no oil in the engine” based on an oil change invoice showing 5 quarts rather than the recommended 6 quarts. Unless the truck was towed to their shop with little to no oil in the engine, I do not believe that a used oil analysis–or other inspection of the debris in the oil pan–can determine if the engine was indeed run without oil, or if some other warrantable malfunction caused the spun bearing.

I would further add that it is unlikely that the engine would have lasted for 4 miles, let alone 40 miles if there really was little to no oil in it, and that it would have been making a tremendous amount of noise as soon as it was started. Also, it is highly unlikely that this would have resulted in only one damaged rod bearing.

It also seems absurd to suggest replacing the entire engine, unless there is evidence of much more serious damage, such as cylinder wall damage, etc. If the engine was turned off soon after it began making noise, it might be possible to pull the oil pan, push the piston to the top of the cylinder, clean up the crankshaft journal with crocus cloth, and install a new bearing from below. I would certainly try that if the alternative is a $6500 engine plus labor.

I guess the question at this point is whether or not you want to go through litigation (technically arbitration) against Ford, whether you want to attempt a DIY repair of your engine, whether you want to pay a shop to attempt to replace the damaged bearing and clean up the crankshaft journal, or whether you want to pay a shop to pull the engine and have it rebuilt by a professional machine shop. The Ford dealer solution is unnecessary and unreasonably expensive.


Sounds legit. What’s your qualifications if you don’t mind me asking.

Just my really unprofessional comment. Things have reached the era of unreliability if an oil pump needs a solenoid. Talk about a disaster waiting to happen. It’s not the heat; it’s the stupidity. Ford would fix it if they cared one bit about their reputation. I guess they like people saying “friends don’t let friends drive Fords.” Sadly, they’re not the only maker with engineering for unreliability. Militias that can’t afford tanks will usually mount guns in the pickup beds of old Toyotas. In the Air Force I earned that a suitable substitute wasn’t always suitable for the job YOU needed it for. Just a nice rant today.


I always thought F150s were top of the line. That’s why I bought it.

Far as I know, I don’t really know. I once owned a Saturn Vue.

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I just thought I should mention. I once made it about 100 miles in a NISSAN Sentra on an engine with little to no oil in it. That engine seized completely.

According to the invoice


Highly unlikely. It is much more likely that the engine made it about 100 miles as the oil leaked out and/or was burned than that it was empty from the get-go.


I saw that too. That is why I am struggling to see how Ford can reach the conclusion that the vehicle was driven with “little to no oil in the engine”–and then subsequently refilled with oil to cover up this fact–versus a loss of oil pressure due to some mechanical problem with the engine itself. I am not sure that this can be done outside of a full teardown of the engine, and examination of all of the bearings and rotating surfaces, oil pump, etc. Even then, assuming for the sake of argument that the oil pump had somehow failed, and the engine was in fact full of oil, I do not believe that the resulting damage would be any different than an engine which had no oil pressure because there was no oil.

Just because Ford takes the position, which happens to absolve it of responsibility under the factory warranty does not magically make it so. It just means that compelling Ford to do the right thing will cost money, possibly more money than simply having the engine repaired and vowing to never buy another Ford.


Just my two cents without reading what everyone else said, but this may be a clear case where the judge is going to have to figure it out. The thing is you have no idea if 5 quarts were put in or not. Just because the invoice says it doesn’t mean that it wasn’t starved for oil. So the dealer says it was low oil, and the other shop says it was a solenoid. You sue them both and let them present their case. I really don’t see how you can resolve who is right without more information from the dealer on how much oil was in there. I have no idea what an oil pump solenoid does but there are lots of mechanical issues that will not throw a code. Let the shop try and prove it was the solenoid and not no oil that did it-especially so soon after a change. You don’t ever have to use the dealer though for service, you just have to be able to show that you had the work done.

So at any rate, you have the dealer plop the new engine in and then you go after both for the damages, but you should discuss this with a lawyer.


Its not from 5v6 but simple oil starvation. Because from their perspective that’s the most likely scenario. And I suspect that’s what happened. The first shop tried to cover up their mistake. It’s a little cofusing as written but they had it first. Its reasonable to assume they found it empty, realized their mistake, tried filling and running it. Discovered it was shot and then proclaimed they didn’t know what was wrong. Gets to Ford dealer, now has oil but damage done. Stick a fork in it…


I think that this is the likely scenario.


I would think if the engine was run with low oil volume resulting in a spun rod bearing then there would be other bearing damage. I would not try to true up the crankshaft and just replace the rod bearing because the heat from a spun rod bearing can cause the rod to lose it’s shape and soon the new bearing will go bad. Why didn’t you get a dash message telling you the oil level was low? The only way to find the culprit is to tear the engine down. Even then you may never know what the cause was. My suggestion is never attempt to rebuild an engine that was wrecked from low oil pressure because the heat warps the block and rods, etc. Remove the camshaft and a new one might not fit back in the block. If I wanted to keep the truck I would go with a crate engine.

Suppose for the sake of argument that the oil was full, and instead the variable volume oil pump system malfunctioned, or some piece of debris got circulated through the lubrication system, resulting in oil starvation or scratching damage to the #5 crankshaft journal/rod bearing. Would there be any way to definitively prove that this is what had occurred versus Ford’s claim that there was little or no oil added during the oil change? Similarly, is there any way for Ford to prove that running the engine with “little to no oil” is what really happened, versus a warrantable defect resulting in loss of oil pressure or loss of lubrication to this one bearing?

I am not sure that there is any way for Ford to prove what it is claiming, especially if the damage is limited to one crankshaft journal and connecting rod bearing. One would reasonably expect a lot of damage inside an engine that was indeed run without oil, however even the presence of this type of extensive damage is not probative. As I already pointed out, if a mechanical problem–such as a malfunction of the variable oil volume oil pump–resulted in insufficient oil flow/pressure, the engine would be just as damaged as if there was insufficient oil flow/pressure due to a lack of oil.

Hiring an attorney, who is hopefully smart enough to raise these points will likely be your only option versus attempting to repair this engine. Since the arbitration process will likely take time, I would suggest towing the truck home to store it, and buying a cheap used car on Craigslist to get you where you need to go while the case is pending. I would not attempt to repair or replace the engine until the case is resolved one way or another.