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Im looking for a new truck to replace my old station wagon and had a few questions about diesels. How many miles will an older one (85 to about 95) run for? do they still make good power? what kind of milage to expect? any mantenence that a diesel requires that gas motors do not? any help would be appreciated.
 

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The diesel should have 250,000 miles in it if the oil has been changed. This is actually conservative as you can get 500K out of them but the typical 85/95 vintage truck will be falling apart around the engine by then. The key to the diesel in my opinion is oil change and fuel filters. The oil change is more expensive because of the amount of oil. Most diesels will get around 15 mpg from a 4 wheel drive and closer to 16-17 from the two wheel drive. You will love the torque of the diesel with a trailer behind you. A chip and exhaust system will really wake these things up.
 

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My cousin has one of the very first Powerstrokes, 94, F-350, crew cab, 4WD and a manual tranny. It is now starting to fall apart. Currently has about 275k on it. Tranny and the engine need a rebuild, was told about 1400 for a rebuilt tranny, and the engine was about 6800.

It has been a great work truck, but is hard to drop 10k into something that already has a lot of miles on.
 

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Diesels are nice. I have a 99 F250 Crew Cab 4x4 7.3 Liter with a six speed manual. I'm pushing 200k miles on it. I fully expect it to go another 100k at least before putting in the hot rod engine.

Maintenence:
Coolant: You need to add SCA's to prevent cavitation. Test strips tell you where you are and you add the liquid until you are there. Not a big deal.
Oil: As stated, lot of oil needed. I put 15 quarts in mine.
Fuel Filter: Again, not a big deal.
Spark plugs: We don't need no stinkin spark plugs!
Coil and wires: See spark plugs.


Other than that, not much difference that I can think of off the top of my head. If you get an auto, then you need to make sure you change the fluid on some sort of regular basis, maybe every 50k or so.

Hope this helps.
 

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My dad has 188K on his 2000 powerstroke. I dont know how much you are looking to spend, but i think you could pick up a newer one then 85-95 for a very reasonable cost.

is a diesal right for you?? It depends what you are looking for. Towing? Yes for sure, nothing can beat it. Mix of towing and driving? maybe, for that the newer the better because the newer ones are quicker and better on fuel. Just driving around, you better go with a pretty new one, becasue the older ones will feel slow compared to a big old stationwagon..... The brand new ones with a chip will feel fast compared to a V6 Mustang.
 
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