Nicholas Fluhart

February 8, 2011

2002 Ford F-150

Filed under: Daily Driver — Nicholas Fluhart @ 9:54 pm

To maintain business on a daily basis, it’s important to have a dependable vehicle. Since I use my primary driver, a 2002 Ford F-150 for more than just basic transportation, I need it to be rigged out with the type of features and equipment that are most convenient for my purposes. When I bought the truck new, I was logging quite a few work-related highway miles and I needed a vehicle that was dependable, fuel efficient, and full-size to haul my tools and pull the occasional trailer. Overall, it has performed very well.

The vitals include a 4.2L engine, which is moderately fuel efficient and surprisingly powerful, coupled to a 5-speed manual transmission. For durability, I’ve left it 100% stock, and since I have owned it, it’s required no major mechanical repairs outside of normal service. I have however, done a number of utility-type upgrades.

I lifted the front suspension 1.5 inches to allow more clearance for the front air dam. Although the truck only sees moderate off-road use, I noticed the front dragging occasionally. The lift was a quick and easy fix. I added coil-over springs in the rear to prevent the truck from squatting when hauling a heavy load or pulling a trailer.  Then I added post-mount spotlights for working after dark, and they have proven to be one of the most convenient features on the truck.  I also installed strobe lights in the headlights and in the reverse lights. This is nice if you have to work around traffic situations, such as loading or escorting heavy equipment. At the rear bumper, I’ve got an aftermarket receiver hitch and two types of trailer light receptacles. In the bed I have a skid resistant, heavy-gauge bed liner, removable tool/cargo boxes, and a commercial grade contractor’s rack (headache rack). I’ve run General Ameritrac tires since the truck was new. I got 70,000 miles out of the first set, so naturally I replaced them with the same. They have a rather aggressive tread pattern for a street radial, so they do decent in mild off-road conditions. I’ve hauled over 2,000 lbs in the bed (twice what the truck is rated to haul) for over a hundred miles in the summer heat, and the General Ameritrac’s did fine.

The interior has vinyl floors (which are easy to clean if you track in mud), a bench seat, cruise, tilt wheel, ice cold A/C, and an aftermarket ultra premium sound system. In the past I had a CB radio, 2-way radio, and a scanner. I now only use my Cobra 29 LTD Classic (talking through a 64″ steel whip) and a 150 channel scanner. I also have provisions for a laptop computer and GPS devises. Tinted windows keep the sun out on those hot summer days.

Future upgrades include a trailer brake controller, 12V auxiliary power at the rear bumper, and a few other odds and ends that I will be posting later.

I’ve been happy with this truck. It has been dependable and has served my purposes well. You will see it in a lot of my posts on this blog.

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