Are EcoBoost Engines Good? (+ Problems They Have)

Ford EcoBoost engines have been around for a while. Advertised for having better fuel efficiency, the EcoBoost engine promises higher power and torque figures. With over a decade in operation, now is a great time to find how great Ecoboost engines have been.

So, are EcoBoost engines good?  Let’s find out.

Are EcoBoost Engines Good? 

The Ford EcoBoost engines are great powerhouses. These are durable engines, easily clocking 100,000 miles with great power output and 30% higher fuel efficiency than conventional engines. As per Ford, EcoBoost also produces 15% fewer emissions. 

The first EcoBoost engine was initially made to provide the F150 with a better powerhouse. An engine that can make the necessary power while consuming less fuel. So, the 3.5L Twinforce V6 EcoBoost came into play. 

By using direct injection, Ford was able to increase atomization while reducing fuel wastage, which increases fuel efficiency. The richer combustion reduced the number of contaminants produced, reducing emissions. And the addition of a turbocharger boosted the power figures. All of which resulted in a more powerful highly efficient power plant. 

As Ford initially made the engine for their most rugged vehicle the F150, it had to be durable. And since it shares tech with VW’s TSI engine, which is another reliable engine, EcoBoost turned out to be great. 

The fact that Ford uses the EcoBoost engine for the majority of vehicles including the F150 trucks and Mustang, talks about the confidence that Ford has in their EcoBoost technology. 

However, many recalls that Ford has made for their EcoBoost-equipped cars, along with some unfortunate accidents that happened across the globe, sure raises some alarms. 

So, are EcoBoost engines really that great? Let’s understand it step by step.      

Also read: 2.0 EcoBoost vs 2.5 Hybrid- Which Engine is Better

What EcoBoost Engines are There?

Ford has been making EcoBoost engines since 2007. From the first-gen Twin-force V6 to the latest Mild-hybrid variants, Ford has continuously upgraded their Ecoboost technology.  

While Ford has made multiple variants of one engine, as of now, there are three 3-cylinder, four 4-cylinder, and four 5 cylinder engines with different displacements. Below is a list shared from Wikipedia of all the Ecoboost engines Ford has developed so far, 

EcoBoost 1.0Fox999 cc (61.0 cu in)2012–presentDOHC I3
EcoBoost 1.1Ford Duratec engine1,084 cc (66.1 cu in)2017–presentDOHC I3
EcoBoost 1.5Dragon1,497 cc (91.4 cu in)2018–presentDOHC I3
EcoBoost 1.5Ford Sigma engine1,500 cc (92 cu in)2014–presentDOHC I4
EcoBoost 1.6Ford Sigma engine1,596 cc (97.4 cu in)2010–presentDOHC I4
EcoBoost 2.0Mazda L engine1,999 cc (122.0 cu in)2010–2014DOHC I4
EcoBoost 2.0 twin scrollClean-sheet engine block[18]1,999 cc (122.0 cu in)2015–presentDOHC I4
EcoBoost 2.3Clean-sheet engine block2,261 cc (138.0 cu in)2015–presentDOHC I4
EcoBoost 2.7Nano2,694 cc (164.4 cu in)2015–presentDOHC V6
EcoBoost 3.0Nano2,967 cc (181.1 cu in)2016–presentDOHC V6
EcoBoost 3.5Cyclone3,496 cc (213.3 cu in)2010–presentDOHC V6

How Long Do EcoBoost Engines Last?

Any EcoBoost engine is expected to last 100,000 miles without major repairs. Well-maintained gasoline engines last till 150,000 miles or up to 10 years. The bigger engines like the 3.5L Ecoboost last longer than 200,000 miles if factory standard is maintained. 

Ecoboost engines are durable engines. The technology they use causes very little wear and tear, while the EcoBoost engines initially had problems here and there. With a decade in developing these engines, the second-gen EcoBoost engines are less likely to show any major faults.  

Even the older engine didn’t have major issues, rather issues related to timing belts, gaskets, valves, spark plugs, and injectors due to direct injection, there were several cases of carbon buildup that clogged the intake valve. But Ford eventually resolved the problem. 

In the second-gen 3.5L Ecoboost engine, Ford has replaced direct injection with port injection for a more stable air-fuel mixture and smoother operation. Minor changes have also been made to other engines to improve reliability. 

Also read: 25 Common Questions about Ford Fusion You Need to Know

Did EcoBoost Engines Have Any Recalls?

Ford had issued a recall for the 1.0 L and 1.6 L engine in 2018. Both engines had numerous complaints about engine overheating. Some of them also caught engine fire due to oil leaks.   

The EcoBoost not only had a recall but Ford is also facing a lawsuit with one Arkansas lawsuit filed before. 

The lawsuit is for cars between 2013-2019 stating engine coolant is leaking into the cylinder. It accuses Ford of selling the 1.5L, 1.6L, 2.0L engines with cracked heads, loosely sealed engines.

As for the recall, the cause was the same but for different reasons. The 1.0L EcoBoost engine made in-between 2011-2013 used a nylon coolant pipe that melted at high temps. Over 45000 1.0L  Ecoboost engines made between that time were recalled.

The 1.6L, on the other hand, had a localized overheating problem that led to the cracking of cylinder heads. This caused pressurized oil to leak and cause engine fires. There were also cases of coolant leaks in the cylinder. 15200 vehicles were recalled and parts replacements were made. 

What Problems Do EcoBoost Engines Have?

EcoBoost engines share problems like leaks, overheating, and clogging. These are the common problems mainly shown in the older engines mostly before 2018.  

Problems with 3.5L EcoBoost Engine: In the twin force engine, the major problem included excessive wear-tear of the timing chain (replacement cost $1000-$1500), failed spark plug ($100 to replace). 

Other issues include condensation caused in the intercooler (specific to 2011/12 models), exhaust issues (specific to 2013-2015 models), and calibration issues.

2.3L EcoBoost Engine: The 2.3L EcoBoost engine faces problems related to blown head gaskets. Mainly because the head gasket used was designed for Mustang but used in the Explorer and RS. The general cost of repair is $1100-$1400 for replacement. 

Another problem is with clogged inlet valves due to carbon building up inside. The cost for cleaning the valves average around $500. This problem is also common to the 1.0L EcoBoost engine. 

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2.0L Ecoboost Engine: This particular engine had a problem with a cracked intake manifold ($500 to fix), failed turbo control valve, and clogged fuel filter both costing around $100 to fix.  

1.6 L Ecoboost Engine: The 1.6L engine got discontinued due to localized heating problems and leaks caused by it. It was replaced by the 1.5L engine. The problems it showed were replaced by Ford under the recalls.

How to Properly Take Care of Your EcoBoost Engine?

Taking care of an Ecoboost engine is not much different than any other engine. Regular maintenance with immediate repairs is the way to increase engine durability. 

Whether done at a dealership or by yourself, an Ecoboost engine needs an oil change every 5000 miles. Using good-quality synthetic oil is the way to go. This also includes replacing the oil filter. While changing the oil, do a leak inspection and check your coolant level.   

Replace the spark plugs within 50,000 miles and clean the intake manifold. Get your timing belts, fuel injector, and gaskets inspected at the same time as well. Don’t ignore any lights on the dashboard and get it fixed immediately. 

Also read: 3 Worst Ford Diesel Engines

Are EcoBoost Engines Fuel-Efficient?

EcoBoost engines are 20%-30% more efficient than normal engines. Even the 3.5L V6  offers a mileage between 17 -23 mpg under any load.

The main selling point of the EcoBoost engine is its fuel economy despite high power output. The 1.0L EcoBoost for example is a 123 hp engine that gives a combined mileage of 28 mpg.  

The use of direct injection technology with variable valve timing and turbocharger helps greatly into that. Since it uses direct injection, the need for an additional cylinder is reduced, making the engine smaller and lighter. Turbo spools in a high amount of air that create better combustion resulting in high power production with less amount of fuel. All these factors add to the higher efficiency of the engine.  

With the addition of hybrid technology with the EcoBoost engine, the Ford mild hybrid cars are more efficient than ever. For example, the Mild hybrid variant of the Ford Fiesta offers a mileage of 58.9 mpg. 

Why are EcoBoost Engines Better than Other Engines?

Ecoboost engines are small engines with higher power output and lower fuel consumption. Despite being petrol engines they are as effective as diesel. They also have lower emissions that cause less harm to the environment.

EcoBoost engines are better than other engines in many ways. 

  • EcoBoost engines are fuel-efficient. 
  • They are lightweight engines reducing overall vehicle weight.
  • EcoBoost engines utilize fewer cylinders so they have very small sizes, meaning more space for the cabin. 
  • EcoBoost engines despite small sizes can produce high power. A 1.0L Ecoboost engine can produce power similar to 1.2L.  
  • EcoBoost engines produce 15% less emission. 
  • EcoBoost engines also need lower maintenance and have higher reliability. 

Which EcoBoost Engines are the Best?

The 1.0L, 1.5L, 2.7L, 3.5L engines are some of the best Ecoboost Ford has to offer. 

While all EcoBoost engines are as great as others. There are a few that are just better. Below is a list of those engines with the cars they are installed in. 

1.0L EcoBoost engine: Able to produce power between 84-154 hp, this engine is installed in the Ford Focus, Fiest, EcoSport, Puma, Transit, and the Ford C and B Max. 

1.5L EcoBoost engine: The 1.5L EcoBoost engine is rated around 150-200 hp. You can find this engine in models of 2015 Ford Focus and Mondeo, 2017-19 Ford Escape, 2014-2020 Ford Fusion along with the 2017-2019 model of Ford Landwind X7. 

2.7L EcoBoost Engine: The 2.7L engine produces 325 hp and 375 lb. ft of torque. The engine is used in the 2015-18 F 150, 2015-18 Ford Edge Sport, 2017-19 Ford Fusion Sport, and the current Ford Bronco. 

3.5L EcoBoost Engine: The 3.5L is the biggest EcoBoost engine that can produce up to 660hp. For over two generations, it has been used in many ford vehicles. 

This includes Ford F-150 Raptor, 2010-19 Ford Taurus SHO, 2013-19 Explorer Sport and Flex, 2015-18 Ford Expedition, 2017-2020 Ford GT.