The Ford 1.5 EcoBoost is one of the newest Ford EcoBoost engines as it was first revealed back in 2014 as a slightly downsized version of the previous 1.6L EcoBoost engine. According to a few sources, Ford did this to comply with Chinese taxes which are a lot lower for 1.5L engines as opposed to 1.6L engines.
However, Ford did this perfectly as the 1.5L engine is as powerful as the 1.6L engine at 181hp. As such, this engine offers a really good balance of dependability, fuel efficiency, running costs, and power. No engine is perfect as all powertrains come with certain limitations and reliability issues, and that is going to be the topic of this article.
The most common Ford 1.5 EcoBoost engine problems include issues with the cooling system, issues with carbon build-up, issues with fuel injectors clogging up, and issues with plugs and coils. We also need to mention that this engine comes with a turbocharger which is mostly the reason why the 1.5L can offer 181hp.
If you take proper care of this engine, it is likely going to last a long time. On the other hand, if you aren’t consistent with your maintenance, the 1.5L is going to suffer eventually.
You might want to read about Ford 2.0 EcoBoost engine issues.
Ford 1.5 EcoBoost – Cooling system issues
The 1.6L EcoBoost suffers from relatively serious cooling-related issues which even kickstarted a large class action lawsuit against Ford. As the 1.5L is loosely based on the 1.6L, these issues also include the 1.5L engine, but not to the same extent. Be that as it may, the 1.5L EcoBoost is also included in this lawsuit. It seems like the cooling problem is associated with the engine block and head design, but this is not 100% confirmed.
Some sources state that the coolant can find its way into the combustion chamber, and after a while, coolant levels become too low and cause the engine to overheat, corrode, misfire, and sometimes even fail completely. There are no easy ways to fix this which is why we will have to wait before this class action lawsuit ends, but many owners solved the issue by replacing the entire engine under warranty.
Ford 1.5 EcoBoost – Carbon build-up issues
The Ford 1.5L EcoBoost is a direct injection engine which means that it is prone to carbon deposits building up on the valves and thus restricting airflow to the engine. This is going to cause some strain on the engine, but it is not likely going to cause any serious problems. Either way, it is better to clean your valves whenever needed as that will retain your engine power for good.
If you sense any power loss, rough idling, or engine misfiring, chances are that your valves are covered with carbon deposits. According to Ford mechanics, this issue is not likely to occur more than once in around 100k miles or so which means that this is not something you will have to do often. Either way, the best thing you can do is to use Walnut blasting to clean the valves which are likely to cost you a few hundred dollars.
Ford 1.5 EcoBoost – Clogged up fuel injectors
Direct injection engines have countless benefits for everyday applications, but they also come with certain inherent flaws which need to be dealt with one way or the other. We already talked about issues with carbon deposits, but we also need to mention all the issues associated with clogged-up fuel injectors that are also common on direct injection engines.
If you sense your 1.5L engine cranking for a long time, idling roughly, misfiring, or simply having terrible fuel economy, there is a great deal of chance that this is being caused by clogged-up fuel injectors. To solve this, you will have to either clean the injectors, replace the injector seals, or replace the injectors completely.
Ford 1.5 EcoBoost – Plugs and coils issues
Problems with ignition coils and spark plugs are not necessarily reliability issues as these are common maintenance necessities. However, we are going to mention them here because they are vital for long-term engine performance. Because the 1.5L EcoBoost is a turbocharged engine, it requires stronger sparks to get it going.
This inevitably causes more strain on the plugs and the coils which cause them to wear out faster as opposed to other engines that aren’t turbocharged. These “issues” aren’t as common as on larger EcoBoost engines as the 1.5L is not a particularly powerful engine and is not used on heavier cars that tend to haul and tow often.
Video: Cleaning Dirty or Clogged Fuel Injectors – DIY Without Using Expensive Equipment
How long can the Ford 1.5 EcoBoost last?
If you take proper care of it and you do all the maintenance services whenever necessary, you should easily be able to enjoy your 1.5L EcoBoost engine past 100-150k miles. Just be sure to regularly and properly service the car and don’t abuse the engine.
It is extremely difficult to properly gauge how long an engine can last as there are simply way too many variables that go into that. Some 1.5L EcoBoost units are likely going to last 200k if not even 300k miles while others can fail at just 50k miles. There isn’t an agreed-upon consensus on this topic, and that is likely to remain that way.
Is the Ford EcoBoost 1.5 a good engine?
The Ford 1.5L EcoBoost engine is a really good engine for a variety of different reasons. For starters, it is a small displacement engine that offers more power than many significantly larger engines. Secondly, it is a really efficient engine that does not use much fuel and does not burn any additional oil which inherently makes it cheaper to run.
Thirdly, this engine is also really reliable and is not often going to require repairs. When it does, those repairs tend to be fairly affordable considering the power you are getting from this engine.
How much power can the 1.5L Ford EcoBoost handle?
It seems like the 1.5L Ford EcoBoost engine can handle up to 400hp as per a few credible tuning sources online. This is an extremely high number for such a small engine which means that many things will have to be done in order to ensure that the engine can actually endure 400hp without blowing up.