3.0 Ranger Coolant Leak

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Feb 3, 2011
Golden Meadow, LA
After band aiding the timing coolant leak with Stop Leak for the past year now, I've decided its time to finally dig into it and change the gasket. It only leaks when parked, a small drip for a few seconds that runs down the block from a bolt on the passenger side of the timing cover. For this reason I dont go far in the truck, I want it to be reliable thus my decision to change the gasket. I'm also going to throw on the Napa water pump I've been having for a year or two now. I have a Fel Pro TCS 45973 gasket kit, which comes with timing cover gasket, water pump gasket, a sleeve n seal with a tube of red loctite, a crank seal,and a tube of black rtv silicone. Will the sleeve n seal be necessary, Ive read about it, but have never installed one. also, where will the red loctite be applied? Im assuming the supplied rtv silicone is for the corners of the oil pan gasket, can someone confirm this? Im nervous about damaging the oil pan gasket. I can take it to my cousins shop and have him do it for $700 but i'd rather save some money, take my time, and learn along the way. To remove the crank bolt, can I just take it off with an impact and put it back on with the impact also? (Ive watched a few of fordtechmakuloco's videos on youtube, guy seems to be pretty knowledgable on fords and on the 3.0 vulcan he installed the crank bolt back with an impact.) Or should I torque it to proper specs? I'm usually a stickler when it comes to torque specs. Any info and helpful tips are appreciated.
If you have a good impact you can take it on and off with that, I had to use a breaker bar and the starter. I don't remember using loctite but I did use some anaerobic sealer on the bolts that go through the cover into the water jacket. I think I just used rtv on the gasket around the coolant holes. You have to be careful getting the oil pan gasket separated from the timing cover, I don't remember if you can loosen the oil pan bolts and drop it down or not. If you have high mileage you might want to change the timing chain stuff since it's right there. I would check the crank for a worn spot where the seal rides, if the crank is smooth I wouldn't bother with the sleeve, but keep in mind that the new seal in the kit might sized for use with the sleeve. The red loctite is probably to glue the sleeve on.
I remember your earlier post from 1/15/18 as I also have a Ford Ranger. Here it is for additional info: https://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/4636418/Re:_3.0_Ranger_Timing_Cover_Ga#Post4636418 Again, good luck. Edit: After getting my 'leak' fixed the second time, all is well. In January 2018, I again had a slight leak (3rd time), but attribute that to the low temps we had of 0* F Temps warmed up and NO further leaking.
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Just did this job on my 3.0 as well. YES use the sleeve, it takes an extra 10 mins to do and is super simple. The metal on the crankshaft pulley had a groove in it that was quite noticeable when running my hands across the surface. It makes sense to replace the crankshaft seal too because it gets hard and brittle after all these years of heat. You need a bit of RTV on the sharp corner where the cover connects with the oil pan gasket. My oil pan gasket has a re-usable rubber type so all that was needed was a wipe down of the gasket surface. Dropping the oil pan would be a PITA on this truck. The crank bolt you can use an impact to take off easily. It's pretty critical to torque it back properly and also to use some blue loctite. I didn't have a fancy pulley holder, but what I did was wedge a long prybar between the floor (on a block of wood), and onto the teeth of the crank pulley to prevent it from turning while torquing. If you had a manual transmission, it would be much easier since you can just put the truck in gear to hold the engine. I bought the same Fel-Pro gasket kit as you but didn't use the included water pump gasket. Stuck with the gasket that was provided with the OEM Motorcraft water pump. The Fel-Pro gasket had rougher cuts and is slightly thicker than the OEM gasket, not sure if it matters. Make sure you use thread sealant on the bolts specified by the service manual. I also replaced the thermostat and used the associated Fel-Pro paper gasket. Not too happy that it had a small leak later, even though I cleaned everything perfect and torqued properly. The leak slowly stopped, but I might go back in and replace the paper gasket with the rubberized version from Fel-Pro. The hardest part of the job was actually trying to get the fan clutch off. It's reverse thread and I bought the special tool but it turned out all I had to do was wedge a screwdriver in between some bolts strategically. I couldn't actually figure out how to use the tool. Lastly make sure you do an oil change because alot of coolant drips into the pan when you pull the timing cover.
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