This a quick and relatively easy fix. The column mounted selector on my'02 F-250 was getting progressively looser and was starting to affect drivability. After some digging around on the web it appears this is a well know and very common ailment for many, many years of F series.
Under the dash at the end of the shift tube is a plate retained by two Torx bolts. These are prone to working loose. (One was literally hanging by a thread and the other just a few turns more) A few minutes on your back in the foot-well with some Locktite and a wrench will work wonders. If you want the whole package you can replace the two “shift tube bushings”. They are sold in pairs, Ford PN: F3TZ-7L278-A online for $5-$6 or at my local stealership for $16
I had to replace the plastic bushings for the shift rod on one of my F350's. Did those while I had the whole column apart and replaced just about everything since most of the wear parts were worn. I dislike working on tilt columns. The non-tilt column in my other F350 is much easier to work on.
Yup, had the whole package replaced on my 02 F250. Ford people told me that it was such an inexpensive repair that they replaced all the parts new, including the cable etc. Ohman, shifts like a new truck.
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