Ford F250 is a heavy-duty pickup truck introduced by Ford in several model years and generations. Tailgates are an important part of the truck as they are useful for loading/unloading the cargo and securing it in its place.
Are Ford F250 Tailgates Interchangeable? You can interchange Ford F250 tailgates between 1999-2007, 2008-2016, 2017-2019, and 2020-2022 models. You can also swap them with the same model years of F350 and F450 Super Duty pickup trucks. Moreover, 1999-2016 F250 tailgates are compatible with 1997-2003 F150.
This article will guide you regarding the compatibility of tailgates between different model years of Ford F250 and with F150, F350, and F450. We will also discuss factors like compatible dimensions, mounting points, and design features that you should consider to find a replacement.
Specifications of Ford F250 tailgate
Specifications of the tailgate, including its dimensions, construction material, and other advanced features, are of prime importance to determine the suitability of interchange between model years of the truck.
For different-length beds, the tailgate width remains the same for most model years of the Ford F250. Tailgates from 1973-1997 have an approximate width of 66-67 inches.
In comparison, 1999-2007 variants have a 62-64 inches distance between tailgate pivot points. These dimensions are for the tailgate, while the actual bed width can be slightly higher due to the overlap between the corners of the tailgate.
Ford F250 Super Duty trucks after 2017 have aluminum tailgates compared to steel ones in earlier models. Aluminum design is of alloy used for military and other high-end applications.
Therefore, it gives them tougher corrosion resistance built with less weight. Consequently, you can save some money in terms of gas for aluminum tailgates because of their lightweight and ability to haul heavy loads without any mechanical deformation in shape.
Moreover, some additional features include a tailgate step, its handle, and a locking mechanism.
You will also find a camera installed as well as some sensors and powered operation in the latest models of Ford Super Duty pickup trucks. There will also be changes in wiring according to the available features.
Factors affecting interchangeability of tailgates between Ford F250 models
The interchangeability of tailgates between Ford F250 models depends on various factors.
Moreover, there can be a few changes according to the year or trim level of the Ford Super Duty due to the upgrades and additional features from manufacturers for high-end trim levels like Lariat, Platinum, and Limited.
Dimensions and mounting points
The interchangeability primarily depends on their dimensions and mounting points.
Different generations of the truck can have slight variations in the size and shape of the tailgate, which can affect its compatibility with other generations.
Moreover, you should also check the mounting hole patterns or the overall width and height of the tailgate to ensure a proper fit during interchangeability.
The mounting hole patterns and overall dimensions of a 2015 version tailgate can differ from those of a 2020 model, making them incompatible with a direct replacement.
Tailgates in modern vehicles often include electrical components, such as taillights, reverse lights, and sensors. The electrical wiring system must be compatible for proper functioning.
Changes in wiring configurations, connector types, or the presence of additional features like backup cameras can impact the interchangeability of tailgates.
For instance, older F250 versions do not have a provision for a backup camera, whereas newer variants have this feature, leading to wiring differences.
For example, a 2017 F250 tailgate with a backup camera and integrated sensors can have a different wiring configuration than a 2010 variant without such features, leading to compatibility issues.
Design features encompass various elements, such as the presence of spoilers, step gates, or integrated bed steps.
Trucks with advanced features require specific mounting points or structural reinforcements that can differ from older versions.
For example, a tailgate with a built-in bed step and other safety features from a recent 2023 F-250 model will not be compatible with earlier variants lacking the necessary mounting provisions.
The locking mechanism of a Ford F250 tailgate plays a vital role in its interchangeability. Different model years have variations in the type of locking mechanism used or the location of the latch.
These differences can impact the compatibility of tailgates when it comes to secure attachment and smooth operation.
For instance, the latest truck models have remote-powered tailgates that you can lock or unlock with the key fob, compared to earlier versions with manual handle locks.
Therefore, you can replace it with a variant year with a similar latch lock location or require modifications to make it work.
Interchangeable tailgates between different model years of Ford F250
You can swap the tailgates of earlier Ford F250 style-side truck models with 1965-1996 variants. Similarly, 1999-2007 variants also have interchangeable tailgates.
2008-2016 variants are swappable with slight modifications regarding the left or driver-side hinge for spring assist to work.
They also have a Super Duty embossed in the body. These are valid for style-side truck models. For step-side variants, there can be variations by the manufacturers and changes in dimensions every year.
You can swap them for 2017-2019 and 2020-2022 variants without much change. Later models also have a built-in camera for different functions.
Can we interchange Ford F250 tailgates with F150, F350 and F450?
You can replace the tailgates between Ford F150 and F250 model years if they have the same bed dimensions. For example, the 1999-2016 Ford F20 tailgates are compatible with the 1997-2003 F150.
However, I will recommend going for a swap between the same model years. Moreover, aftermarket tailgates are available that are compatible between the 1998-2003 F150 and 1999-2007 Ford F-250 variants.
You can replace the tailgates between 1999-2007 and 2008-2016 Ford F250 and F350. Since they belong to the Super Duty series of trucks, you can swap their tailgates and other body parts on a year-to-year basis without any changes.
Ford F450 also belongs to the Super Duty series of pickup trucks. Therefore, the tailgate has a similar design, dimensions, and other features as that of the F250.
You can swap them between any two models from the same year or the same generation before the addition of new features by the manufacturer.
Purpose of interchanging F250 tailgates
The purpose of interchanging Ford F250 tailgates can depend on the needs of the vehicle owner. You can do it to repair or replace a damaged or malfunctioning tailgate.
If it has dents, is rusted, or is no longer functioning properly, swapping it with a compatible one from another F250 can restore the functionality and appearance of the vehicle.
Some owners also look for compatible tailgates from the latest models to upgrade or customize their trucks.
They look for advanced features like an integrated step, power-assisted opening, or a built-in backup camera.
Replacing tailgates allows you to change the look of the truck, whether by switching to a different color, style, or trim level.
There can be other reasons, like matching personal preferences, creating a unique aesthetic, or aligning with a specific theme or branding.
Moreover, some aftermarket accessories, such as bed extenders or specialized tailgate protectors, require particular tailgate designs or features. Therefore, people look for compatible models from salvage stores or junkyards.
Used parts are also comparatively inexpensive compared to new ones. Therefore, truck owners often look for similar tailgates instead of buying new ones to save money.
What model years of Ford F250 are compatible with power tailgates?
2017-2022 models of Ford F250 come with a power tailgate design. You can easily lower or raise it with the help of a remote.
However, for this mechanism to work, you should be in the vicinity of the truck. When you press the push button on the remote to lower the gate, it releases an electronic latch, and the gate slowly moves down with the help of gravity and side hydraulics.
While raising it, an electric motor does the work to lift its weight. If you want to add a power tailgate to models before 2017, you have to do a lot of modification work involving wiring changes and also its mechanical fitting.