I brought my 2006 Ford 150 to the mechanic shop to be diagnosed with a check engine light. However, the explanation is not really clear. TLDR; the recommendation is a new engine.

When the truck runs, it seems to be fine. Here is the full diagnosis provided by the shop:

"Verified cel on the timing codes in system and excessive metal material in the system"

It doesn't really add up or be understandable, at least to me. Seems to just say some metal was found thus a new engine is needed. There were codes, however, no codes were provided.

Is this a typical diagnosis that one would get when taking a truck to the shop? Seems vague. I get metal presence is not good but it doesn't explain why a new engine is needed while the truck is running fine.

Is anyone aware of these kinds of issues with F-150s? How do these engines get to a state where "too much metal" would trip a sensor leading to a new engine needed diagnosis?

Also when I changed the oil recently there was no metal present as far as I could tell.

  • 2
    Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! Have the shop show you how they diagnosed metal material in the system. One specific way you can tell is to tear the oil filter apart and check between the pleats. You could also see a metallic sheen in the oil. If they can't tell you how the diagnosed a new engine, I'd suggest to get a 2nd opinion. Nov 16, 2022 at 22:45
  • Thanks, @Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 that is part of the problem, they didn't show me how they diagnosed it. I'll try those tips and will look into getting a second opinion. Need to find a reputable place.
    – user74126
    Nov 17, 2022 at 15:04

1 Answer 1


Run, do not walk, away from this shop. And never go back. You need to find a competent, reliable and honest mechanic. This shop appears to be expert at only one thing: ripoff.

Do yourself a favor and do a Google search for "excessive metal material in the system" and be sure to include the quotation marks. Guess what? No one else in the history of the internet has ever used that phrase. This shop made it up. They are trying to scare you into paying for work that may be unnecessary.

No one here can say why your check engine light was on. We would need to know the codes. Many auto parts stores will plug into your truck and read your codes for free. You might even get a printout from them. And as @Peter M points out, code readers are fairly cheap if you don't want to drive to an auto parts store.

If you get a list of codes and start a new question including those codes, we may be able to help you.

To find a better mechanic, check social media, online forums for your vehicle and rating sites like Yelp.

  • Thanks, @mta good points. I should have checked the reviews first, it seems there are many who had a similar experience or worse.
    – user74126
    Nov 17, 2022 at 15:12
  • I'd also add that code readers are fairly cheap if you don't want to drive to an auto parts store.
    – Peter M
    Nov 17, 2022 at 17:37

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .