OEM Linking Pin: 2015 Ford F-150 Outer Box Side Replacement Options - UPDATE

OEM Linking Pin: 2015 Ford F-150 Outer Box Side Replacement Options - UPDATE

The method for replacing the outer box side on the 2015 Ford F-150 has been a popular area of discussion, and many people are asking, "What are my options and is one missing?"

The Ford Workshop manual directs us to the instruction sheet for the attachment method and specifications around that attachment method. According to the general repair information under the Service Guidelines, "The figures will explicitly call out which rivets are possible." The latest version of the instruction sheet for the outer box side replacement gives the option of using blind rivets or plug welds. You may be thinking, what about self-piercing rivets (SPRs)?

In 2015, we presented this to Ford and were told that SPRs are not an option for outer box side replacement. Technicians should use either plug welds or the specific blind rivets that are referenced in the instruction sheet.

UPDATE: In late 2020, Ford revised the F-150 outer box side replacement procedures to now include the use of SPRs in specified locations. This change only applies to the 2015 and newer F-150. Super Duty trucks will not be able to use SPRs for the repair procedure.

This change is due to a newly sourced SPR that makes the outer box side repair with SPRs possible. Ford has updated the procedure in the vehicle-specific Workshop manuals but not the instruction sheets. In addition to the SPRs, blind rivets or plug welds are still an option in the specified locations.

The 2015 Ford F-150 Instruction Sheets can be viewed in the I-CAR website.

Additional I-CAR Collision Repair News you may find helpful:
2016 SEMA - Ford F-150 Box Side Replacement: UPDATE
Collision Information Website Access: Ford/Lincoln
Ford/Lincoln Has Video Procedures: 2015-Present Ford F-150 Outer Box Side Replacement
Ford/Lincoln Position Statement: Non-OEM Structural Rivets
How Does the I-CAR OEM Linking Pin Process Work?
Step-By-Step: Accessing Ford/Lincoln Repair Information