One of the most hateful repairs I've ever done

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1997 Thunderbird - 4.6 Modular I've read that the 4.6 SOHC is a great motor. I'm sure it is, but given enough time, they all seem to develop an oil leak around the oil filter adapter. It's a casting on the driver's side of the engine block down low in the front. The gasket is a composite with the orange sealing rings built into it. The gasket seals the oil filter input/output and the lower radiator hose output. In time, the rings sealing the oil passages crush down flat and oil leaks around the adapter. Because of the way the engine is mounted in the T-bird, there is virtually no room to access the bolts that hold the adapter on. Even getting to the oil filter is a PITA. The engine was leaking a quart of oil every two days, so it had to be done. I had to go through the wheel well sway bar opening with 20 inches worth of extensions, a ujoint and a 10mm socket. Took a total of 5 hours start to finish. Not one of Ford's better ideas.
 
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I think the fuel pump on my Suburban was the worst for me. Lots of road dirt dropping on your face as you try and free up the fuel tank. Its heavy even when empty. Steel fuel lines that snap vs unscrewing. A bunch of waxy goo to remove that keeps the access plate clean. Doing it the second time was easier but more annoying at having to do it a 2nd time in a year.
 

chestand

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Originally Posted By: zzyzzx
Who was making you get the V8 when you could have gotten the smaller V6?
I bought the car used. I took the engine that came in it....
 
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Those can be a pain. I had the same thing happen on my Jeep. The oil filter adapter was leaking a ton of oil. Luckily, the Jeep is easy to work on. I could see the adapter when I opened the hood, but I still needed a breaker bar to break the bolt free. I can only imagine how hard of a job that is with limited room.
 
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Originally Posted By: zzyzzx
Who was making you get the V8 when you could have gotten the smaller V6?
Yes, get the 3.8L so you can feed it head gaskets. A gasket went bad on a 17 year old engine with an unspecified number of miles. I guess its a bad engine.[/sarcasm]
 
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Every car has some bits that are a PITA to service, including Fords. How about a timing chain on a 2001 Ecotec motor? Fuel filter on a 2000 Mazda 626? The list goes on. In any event, congrats on getting it done. Kevin
 

chestand

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Originally Posted By: ag_ghost
Every car has some bits that are a PITA to service, including Fords. How about a timing chain on a 2001 Ecotec motor? Fuel filter on a 2000 Mazda 626? The list goes on. In any event, congrats on getting it done. Kevin
Thanks. As time goes on, you tend to forget repair based PITA's. I recall my brother's Saab 9-5 was never easy to do anything under the hood. At least I haven't had any of the Ford spark plugs launching out of the head to deal with yet.
 
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New threads in a 2v that spit a plug,especially when tight to the firewall. I had to take the hood off to thread the insert straight.
 
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If you think Ford engineering is crazy wait until you work in a Renault Clio/Megane when every repair procedure starts with: 1. Lift the car in a two post hoist 2. Remove front wheels 3. Remove front mudguards 4. Remove front bumper 5. Remove front headlamps 6. Remove radiator support. 7. Support the engine and remove engine mounts.
 
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I just replaced the power steering pump on my Camaro last week. It's up high on the front of the engine, but the two bolts that attach it to the cylinder head can only be accessed with an open end wrench, and you can only turn the bolts a half-flat at a time. Oh yes, the ABS module has to be dismounted and moved aside to get any access to the outboard bolt. All told, I was wrenching on those two bolts for about an hour to get them out. Then I broke the phenolic pulley trying to get it off the pump and had to buy a new one. Then I tried to get smart, and had a local machine shop drill access holes in the new pulley so I could use a socket to run in the bolts. The access holes worked like a charm, and it only took me about 5 minutes to install the new pump. But now I'm worried about durability of my new phenolic pulley because the access holes are chipped at the corners and may cause the web to crack over time. Some jobs just go wrong from the start.
 

ls1mike

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Originally Posted By: A_Harman
I just replaced the power steering pump on my Camaro last week. It's up high on the front of the engine, but the two bolts that attach it to the cylinder head can only be accessed with an open end wrench, and you can only turn the bolts a half-flat at a time. Oh yes, the ABS module has to be dismounted and moved aside to get any access to the outboard bolt. All told, I was wrenching on those two bolts for about an hour to get them out. Then I broke the phenolic pulley trying to get it off the pump and had to buy a new one. Then I tried to get smart, and had a local machine shop drill access holes in the new pulley so I could use a socket to run in the bolts. The access holes worked like a charm, and it only took me about 5 minutes to install the new pump. But now I'm worried about durability of my new phenolic pulley because the access holes are chipped at the corners and may cause the web to crack over time. Some jobs just go wrong from the start.
You are doing it wrong... cheers Pull the pulley than go at. I have done the one in the Trans Am 45 minutes out and in. Never touched the ABS module.
 
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Quote:
I had to go through the wheel well sway bar opening with 20 inches worth of extensions, a ujoint and a 10mm socket. Took a total of 5 hours start to finish.
I do not know this engine but I don't quite understand why one implies other! I am assuming there can be no more than 3 bolts holding the thing you wanted to replace. Please explain the 5 hours.
 
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Originally Posted By: ls1mike
Originally Posted By: A_Harman
I just replaced the power steering pump on my Camaro last week. It's up high on the front of the engine, but the two bolts that attach it to the cylinder head can only be accessed with an open end wrench, and you can only turn the bolts a half-flat at a time. Oh yes, the ABS module has to be dismounted and moved aside to get any access to the outboard bolt. All told, I was wrenching on those two bolts for about an hour to get them out. Then I broke the phenolic pulley trying to get it off the pump and had to buy a new one. Then I tried to get smart, and had a local machine shop drill access holes in the new pulley so I could use a socket to run in the bolts. The access holes worked like a charm, and it only took me about 5 minutes to install the new pump. But now I'm worried about durability of my new phenolic pulley because the access holes are chipped at the corners and may cause the web to crack over time. Some jobs just go wrong from the start.
You are doing it wrong... cheers Pull the pulley than go at. I have done the one in the Trans Am 45 minutes out and in. Never touched the ABS module.
How did you get the pulley off? It didn't look like there was enough room to install a puller with the pump in the car.
 

chestand

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Originally Posted By: Vikas
Quote:
I had to go through the wheel well sway bar opening with 20 inches worth of extensions, a ujoint and a 10mm socket. Took a total of 5 hours start to finish.
I do not know this engine but I don't quite understand why one implies other! I am assuming there can be no more than 3 bolts holding the thing you wanted to replace. Please explain the 5 hours.
As usual, the job is complicated by the amount of stuff that has to come off, be drained out, etc. in order to be able to access the area and not be drenched by coolant. Jack up left front, Remove wheel, Drain coolant, Remove battery and battery tray, Remove lower radiator hose, Remove oil filter,Remove power steering reservior return line,Drain power steering reservior, Remove 4 bolts holding adapter to engine, clean adapter surface, clean engine block, as the manuals say "reassembly is the reverse of disassembly."
 
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The absolute worst repair job I ever did was replacing a leaking engine oil cooler in a 1986 Neoplan transit bus with a 6V71 DD. It was smack against the frame rail and had to come out as an assembly (cooler core and non-doweled cover and a bunch of bolts) with the bolts still through it....All the while dripping coolant and engine oil. Going back together was every bit as much fun but it was cleaner since my shirt had rubbed most of the dirt and grime off when I removed it.
 
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My 04 ram hemi was by far the most painful plug change experience ever. The first 6 on the driver side are easy, it's the last 2 that are agonizing. I had to drop the plug in the hole,then the socket and short extension,then swivel,another extension then assemble the pieces,with 1 hand,blind,then crank them in. Pulling them out was a nightmare because I hadn't learned yet that the whole socket and extension needed to be assembled and disassembled in the plug hole. And I had to lay on top of the engine getting poked and stabbed with whatever was sticking out. Dodge wanted 800 bucks to change the plugs in my truck. It took me. 6.5 hours to do it. I'd want 800 bucks to if I had to do it to someone else's vehicle.
 
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Originally Posted By: Clevy
My 04 ram hemi was by far the most painful plug change experience ever. The first 6 on the driver side are easy, it's the last 2 that are agonizing. I had to drop the plug in the hole,then the socket and short extension,then swivel,another extension then assemble the pieces,with 1 hand,blind,then crank them in. Pulling them out was a nightmare because I hadn't learned yet that the whole socket and extension needed to be assembled and disassembled in the plug hole. And I had to lay on top of the engine getting poked and stabbed with whatever was sticking out. Dodge wanted 800 bucks to change the plugs in my truck. It took me. 6.5 hours to do it. I'd want 800 bucks to if I had to do it to someone else's vehicle.
I just did the plugs on my buddies 04 ram hemi with 90k miles on it on Sunday. What a pain. Plus they were the original plugs and were in that engine very tight. I have a 24in. long ratchet that I was using to get the plugs out but had to use a 4ft. breaker bar to get a few loose. When it came to the back 2 cylinders on the drivers side I couldn't get enough leverage to even get them loose. It was about midnight when he said just leave them. He's going to get the shop that does his company cars to deal with them. Also, who was the moron designer that decided to put the egr pipe on the passenger side directly above the coils that really should be pulled straight out? IDIOT.
 
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Originally Posted By: chestand
1997 Thunderbird - 4.6 Modular I've read that the 4.6 SOHC is a great motor. I'm sure it is, but given enough time, they all seem to develop an oil leak around the oil filter adapter.
I did this repair on my Mark VIII a few years ago. Yea, it was enough of a pain that I'm glad it was on my car instead of some customer who would be waiting for it. It's worth it, though, when you start the engine and there are no more leaks.
 
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