The mighty 6.7 Power Stroke diesel engine powers Ford’s biggest trucks. Since its debut in 2011, the “Scorpion” motor has proved itself as one of the most potent diesel power plants. It’s generally considered a reliable motor and is still a mainstay in the blue oval’s current lineup.
Just like any engine, the Power Stroke series requires consistent oil changes and service to keep running smoothly. As an owner, you need to know the correct type and amount of oil before servicing the truck yourself to avoid potential catastrophic issues. Even if you take your truck to a professional for oil services, it’s still important for you to understand what’s going into your engine and how it can vary with your driving style and weather conditions.
According to Ford, the 6.7 Power Stroke takes 15 quarts of oil. Running the engine with too much or too little can cause serious problems, especially for vehicles used for towing and other harsh, demanding work.
Adding over 15 quarts of oil can cause dangerously high oil pressure. This extra pressure can cause leaks or failures in the crankcase and eventually starve your engine of oil.
Running your truck with less than 15 quarts puts engine internals at risk due to inadequate lubrication.
Excess oil should be removed from the system to avoid these issues. If you haven’t added enough oil, continue adding until the dipstick shows a full system within the healthy range.
Different oil viscosities and oil compositions (synthetic, blend, or conventional) impact how effective oil is at lubricating the moving parts in your engine. Using the OE-recommended oil is the best way to keep your Power Stroke running as it should.
For normal driving conditions, 10W-30 oil should be used. However, 5W-40 is the alternative for those who tow often or live in cold weather conditions, such as here in the northern Idaho area.
Be sure to use the correct weight of oil. Using the wrong viscosity can cause issues such as decreased fuel economy, increased wear on your engine, and the potential for leaks. This can spell disaster for your Power Stroke, so pay attention to what oil you’re buying or having put in your truck.
The oil composition is extremely important. Ford recommends a synthetic blend oil for use in your 6.7 Power Stroke. The protection and lubrication it offers over conventional will preserve the longevity of your vehicle.
Of course, certain conventional oils are still okay to use. They are the more economic option initially. Just don’t expect the same performance and longevity as you would from a synthetic. Make sure you’re using a high-quality conventional oil if that’s your preferred option.
Due to varying amounts of driving, weather conditions, and driving styles, you should always keep an eye on the amount and condition of the oil in your system. However, a general idea is every 7,500 miles.
This can be stretched to around 10,000 miles with the proper quality synthetic oil, but you should always listen to the dipstick and appearance of the oil rather than wait until the very latest recommended interval.
Ford would of course like you to use their proprietary Ford Motorcraft oil, but they also do list a large variety of brands and products that can be used for the 6.7 motors. Major brands such as Valvoline, Castrol, Lucas Oil, and others all offer quality synthetic oils that can be used in Power Strokes.
In terms of what’s best though, it can depend. Motorcraft oils will meet every Ford recommended specification, which is great if driving an average amount and in average temperatures.
Shell’s Rotella T6 synthetic oil is claimed to slightly increase fuel economy, and Lucas Oil’s 10299-PK4 has a resistance to thermal breakdown and therefore claims to last longer than most other synthetics (although it might not offer the same protections as Motorcraft’s option, which is something to consider).
In the end, it may be best to consult a professional or do some good research on the different brands and the types and weights of oil they offer. Conditions in an engine bay vary so heavily from driver to driver that there isn’t a clear-cut winner.
If this sounds overwhelming, don’t worry, we get it. You can trust our team of diesel experts to keep your truck maintained and running as it should. Diesel engines are unique and need to be treated with special care, so make sure you’re giving them the best service. Our technicians have years of experience working on diesel vehicles and will make sure your Power Stroke is ready for many more years of towing and hauling. Call or schedule an appointment online today at our Coeur d’Alene, Rathdrum, or Hayden locations in Idaho to meet with our team!