Titan Tank’s dispells a dark cloud that looms over Ford fuel tanks
By Steve Temple
The old saying, “Every cloud has a silver lining,” usually refers to how some good can come of bad things. Actually, the origin of the phrase from the Civil War era meant quite the opposite, as it warned about the glint of enemy artillery behind plumes of gun smoke.
Seems that Ford’s silver lining on many of its diesel fuel tanks is not a good thing, either.
A lawsuit filed by a New Jersey landscaping and construction company claims that the silver/gray coating inside the tanks of ten different E- and F- series made between 1999 and 2008 will “separate and flake off.”
When that happens, the particles clog the fuel system, causing a sudden loss of power, among other problems.
Apparently Ford is aware of the problem, having issued a technical service bulletin (TSB #19728) to dealers regarding it.
The vehicles affected are all diesel, 1999 to 2010 E-350, F-350, F-450, F-550, F-650, and F-750 Super Duty models. (Ford’s lighter duty trucks use a different type tank, and isn’t affected.)
Ford contends that the issue is fuel related, so the factory warranty doesn’t cover it.
Even if it did, Ford doesn’t have a fix, as a steel replacement tank will succumb to the same delamination.
The potential damage to a vehicle from fuel-tank delamination can be even more substantial than merely clogging the filter.
Tim Anderson of T&A Performance has worked on a number of Ford cab and chassis vehicles with delaminated tanks, and says that debris from the liner peeling off can also damage the pumps and injectors, leading to costly repairs.
Rather than get embroiled in a debate about the possible causes and trying to point a finger of blame, we’ll focus on a relatively simple solution: a poly tank replacement.
Ken Anderson, general manager of Titan Fuel Tanks, says that about two years ago customers began contacting them about the Ford tank failures and seeking replacements.
“Frankly we don’t know what’s causing the problem,” he admits. But Titan’s replacement tanks, made of cross-linked polyethylene, are impervious to such problems.
In comparison to less-expensive linear polyurethane, Anderson notes that this type of material is tougher and features better impact resistance.
He adds that it’s inert to most chemicals, even biodiesel (which can be corrosive to a fuel system).
The extra strength and non-reactive aspect of Titan tanks are why they are often used in various military applications.
How about for owners of commercial-duty Fords? “Titan’s fuel tank fixes a problem that my Ford dealership has been seeing for over 12 years,” says Greg Vice, service manager for Kenny Vice Ford in Ladoga, Indiana.
“Before Titan’s solution, we had no choice but to replace one steel tank with another steel tank destined to fail.”
Titan’s 40-gallon tank can be swapped out for either the standard 37-gallon or 40-gallon OEM tanks.
It’s lightweight, corrosion-proof, and features a rollover vent valve and vent hose, as well as a drain plug to simplify maintenance.
Most of the vehicle’s stock fuel-system components are reused, including the existing sending unit.
If needed, replacement straps and skid plates can be obtained from any Ford dealership.
Each Titan fuel tank comes with a limited five-year warranty, and in most cases replaces the following Ford part numbers: XC3Z9002AA, 6C3Z9002BA, 6C3Z9002A, 6C3Z9002E, 6C3Z9002F, 3C3Z9002AA and 5C3Z9002BB.
The labor time to replace the stock tank with the Titan unit from a bare cab and chassis rig is about a half a day.
A second pair of hands will probably be required for both removing and re-installing the tanks.
Once done, the “silver lining” for this job is there’s no longer any delamination and liner flaking residue to cloud up your Ford truck’s fuel system.
Titan Fuel Tanks
5020 North Haroldsen Drive
Idaho Falls, ID 83401
T&A Performance LLC
525 Spice Island Drive, Unit A
Sparks, NV 89431