Refilling the urea in Ford Motor Co.'s 2011 Super Duty diesel pickup will result to a drop in harmful emissions and a boost in dealers service revenue. It depends on the pickup model but usually, urea is stored onboard in a 5- or 6-gallon tank. Ford recommends that the owner refill the tank every 7,500 miles, coinciding with an oil change.
The urea filler neck is actually right beside the diesel neck. Ron Romano, Ford's service lubricant technical expert, said that Ford dealers will sell urea in 1- or 2.5-gallon sizes.
Romano said that Ford's dealers would charge customers $7 a gallon, which is likely to entice customers from other brands.
Mercedes-Benz dealerships charge $9 for a half-gallon bottle while in some states, it costs $16.38. Ford has designed a bottle with a nozzle that fits into the neck to prevent spillage.
Urea, which is also known as diesel exhaust fluid, is injected into the exhaust system. It reduces emissions of oxides of nitrogen, leading to smog, which is a recognized trigger for asthma and other health problems.
Ford is the first Detroit automaker to use urea injection. Aside from Ford dealerships, urea is also offered at truck stops and auto parts stores.
Romano said that service technicians can fill the urea tank from a bulk drum that costs a dealer about $1,500. He explains that how much a dealer charges for that service depends partly on the technician's rate.