Here Are the 6.4 Powerstroke Years to Avoid

Ford 6.4 Powerstroke engines had three years of production between 2008 and 2010. The 2008 engines had the most issues, followed by 2009, which was slightly improved. And the 2010 year had the least problems and is the most reliable of the 6.4L.

Accordingly, some of the problems with the 6.4L engines are piston damage and leaking radiators. The engines also had low mileage and oil contamination problems.

Read on for in-depth coverage of the 6.4L problematic years you should avoid and learn about the problems accordingly.

Key Takeaways:

This article aims to enlighten you on the Worst 6.4L Powerstroke Engine Years. It will address the problematic years and their problems. After reading it, you should be able to decide whether to buy Ford trucks with a 6.4L Powerstroke engine. Some key points to note that we will cover are-

  • Worst Ford 6.4L Powerstroke years to avoid.
  • The issues with the worst 6.4L Powerstroke model years.
  • Reliable model year(s) you can go for.

6.4L Powerstroke Years to Avoid

After having several problems with their 6.0L engines, Navistar made the 6.4L Powerstroke engines. This engine had better specs than its predecessor but retained some issues.

The table below lists the 6.4L Powerstroke engines and their common problems.

2008● Radiator Problems
● Low MPG
● Oil Contamination
● Wire Chafing
● Clogged EGR Coolers
2009● Cover Leakages
● Oil Contamination
● Failed DPFs
2010● Pipe Cracking
● Cover Leaks

If you’re wondering what Ford 6.4L Powerstroke years to avoid among the three, avoid 2008 and 2009. Most problems were reported in the first year and improved slightly in the next. If you have to get a 6.4 powerstroke, go for the year 2010.

What Problems Do The 6.4L 2008 – 2010 Years Have?

Ford is known for manufacturing quality trucks and engines, including the Powerstroke engines. Some engines are successful, like the 6.7 Powerstroke used in their super-duty trucks.

However, some aren’t successful, like the 6.0 Powerstroke and the 6.4L Powerstroke engines. Also, not all years have the problems since some have fewer.

The followings are the problems in the worst 6.4L Powerstroke engine year and the two years that followed.

Problems with Ford 6.4 Powerstroke 2008 Year Model

The first year of the 6.4L Powerstroke engine has the most problems and among the top of the 6.4L bad years. So, this year is worth avoiding purchasing. The following are the problems mostly reported for the 2008 model year.

1. Radiator Leakages – the engine vibration can cause the stock plastic radiator tanks to crack, leading to a coolant leak. Ford never rectified the problem over the three years, and users had to buy aftermarket radiators.

2. Low MPG – The mileage per gallon for the 6.4L Powerstroke engines is low while driving in heavy traffic, especially due to regen. The average mileage was around 10 MPG. Some users had to delete the DPF and EGR to improve mileage.

3. Oil Contamination by Fuel – fuel injected near the end of the exhaust stroke to help the filter burn hydrocarbons can contaminate the oil. The problem forced the users to drain and refill oil sooner than usual.

4. Piston Damages – The pistons in 6.4L have a poor design that features a lip that retains heat and is prone to crack.

5. Clogged EGR Cooler – EGR cooler clogs much faster, allowing the engine to overheat.

6. Wire Chafing – The wires in the high-Power Fuel Pump are loose insulation due to engine vibration and risks of short circuits.

Problems with Ford 6.4 Powerstroke 2009 Year Model

The second year had fewer problems as most of the problems from 2008 had solutions. The problems included

1. Cover Leaks – Due to the regular heating by the EGR system, the aluminum cover wears out more quickly. Holes can appear, allowing coolant to leak and contaminating the oil.

2. Failed DPFs – The Diesel particulate filter can clog, leak, or its sensor fails. These problems are common in the 6.4L.

3. Low Mileage: Like the 2008 year model, and 2009 6.4 Powerstroke also has mileage issues. It has a mileage of around 10 to 12 MPG on average.

Problems with Ford 6.4 Powerstroke 2010 Year Model

The last year of the 6.4 L had the fewest problems, which included

1. Fuel-Water Separator Clog – If not drained regularly, the fuel and water in the water can clog, forming a sludge blocking the drain valve.

2. Pipe Cracking – The stock exhaust pipes in the 6.4L are prone to cracking at the joints leading to pressure loss.

Many more 6.4 Powerstroke Problems have been reported by the owners. Most solutions involve replacing the failed part with an aftermarket one. The replacement and labor costs come from the owner’s pocket, which can be costly.

What 6.4L Years Are Preferable?

Now that you know the answer to the question of what year 6.4 Liter Powerstroke diesel engine to avoid. It’s time to learn about the preferable years. Most of the issues already had solutions by 2010, and Ford had fixed some.

However, 2010 6.4 Powerstroke is considered the preferable year because fewer problems are in it. Most of the issues are resolved in the 2010 year model.

Also, the fuel mileage increased for the engine model as well. Even some vehicles get around 15 MPG with the 6.4 Powerstroke engine, like the 2010 F-250 Super Duty Lariat.

By the way, the fuel mileage is around 13 to 14 MPG for the Ford 6.4L Powerstroke engine.


The following section covers some of the frequently asked questions on the years to avoid on the 6.4L.

Is the 6.4 Powerstroke Engine the Worst Diesel Engine?

No. The 6.0L is considered the worst of the series when comparing the Powerstroke engines. The 6.4L has better reliability, and despite the problems, it can perform better.

What is the lifespan of a 6.4 Power Stroke?

The Ford 6.4 Powerstroke Life Expectancy is 150,000-200,000 miles. But with proper care and maintenance, you can increase the lifespan of the engine even more than 300k miles.


After analyzing all reports by the users, we have found the 2008 model year of the Ford 6.4L Powerstroke the worst. So, we suggest not going for it. Though 2009 has some improvement, it also has noticeable issues which will give you hassles.

But 2010 is the most reliable year of 6.4 Powerstroke if you want to get the exact one. It improves for almost all noticeable issues found in the previous two-year models. It also improves its fuel mileage as well.

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