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How to: 2011+ Grill Removal with pictures

Discussion in 'Modified 2011- 2019 Explorer Sport Tuning' started by Drako99, August 21, 2014.

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    1. Jon M

      Jon M Elite Explorer

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      I had to remove the previous owner's poorly done Plasti-dip spray job before I redid it. I can assure you that it sticks to the chrome just fine. If anything, I think it was harder to remove it from the chrome than from the rest.

      After cleaning it, I rinsed it with hot water to get the solvent off, let it air dry, then sprayed it with Plasti-dip again.
       
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    3. AFKNinja

      AFKNinja Member

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      Does anyone have any tips for removing the four nuts at the bottom of the grill? They seem incredibly hard to access... Is there a certain tool that would be helpful?
      Thanks
       
    4. Eltee

      Eltee Elite Explorer

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      Just did mine this weekend. The bottom ones were cracked loose with an open end wrench using short swings. Fingers were used to finish unscrewing them.
       
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    5. AFKNinja

      AFKNinja Member

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      Is there any trick to getting access the to four nuts at the bottom? I can barely even touch them...
       
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    6. Jon M

      Jon M Elite Explorer

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      The middle two aren't that difficult, but the corners are a huge pain. When you get the top ones out, carefully pop the tabs on the sides, and pull forward. Then squeeze your hand down in there. You're going to need to get a small 10mm wrench or socket on them to break them loose. It's difficult, and you're going to get scraped or cut, but you'll get them.
       
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    7. GRIFFIN4100

      GRIFFIN4100 New Member

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      Wonderful write up and what I am looking to do first! However, all the pictures at the top are gone. Might anyone have saved them or know of a spot to view the bolts? Rather remove to shoot and spray. Thanks in advance!
       
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    8. GRIFFIN4100

      GRIFFIN4100 New Member

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      Also, did anyone use spray vs. plasti dip?
       
    9. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Welcome to the Forum.:wave:
      The poster must have used Photobucket to post those pictures. Apparently that site no longer allows linking. Only photos posted here by members with an Elite membership ($20) are saved to the Forum's servers.

      Peter
       
    10. GRIFFIN4100

      GRIFFIN4100 New Member

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      Thank you Peter.

      Should you have any other leads, please let me know. Cheers!
       
    11. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      I was going to suggest sending the poster a Private Message to see if the photos could be reposted but I just checked and the member hasn't been on here since March 31, 2015.
      There is a very handy 'Search' feature in the upper right you should familiarize yourself with. I found a few threads on grille removal but no pictures. Not sure if they'll help.
      http://www.explorerforum.com/forums...find-how-to-thread-for-grille-removal.402056/
      http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/index.php?threads/front-grille-removal.331825/
      http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/index.php?threads/removing-the-grille.321097/

      Peter
       
    12. GRIFFIN4100

      GRIFFIN4100 New Member

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      Thank you Sir. Very helpful information!
       
    13. Cusefan78

      Cusefan78 Member

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      I removed my girl for plastidip. I don't have pics but I can walk you through it. It comes off pretty easily.
       
    14. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      You're plasti dipping your girl?:)

      Peter
       
      Last edited: July 6, 2017
    15. GRIFFIN4100

      GRIFFIN4100 New Member

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      I actually took it all apart yesterday and did the job I needed to do... really did not wish to spray while on the vehicle. Some of those clips are really stuck in there but I got it all apart. I am most pleased and truck looks beefier!

      Hmmmmmmmmmm.... that might be fun or atleast interesting :D
       
    16. zckry

      zckry New Member

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      For anyone looking for the missing OP photos, I pulled and re-uploaded them with a more reliable image provider (Imgur).

      Here are the images, enjoy!

      Front Grill
       
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    17. zckry

      zckry New Member

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      Just re-uploaded them, best of luck!
       
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    18. Eltee

      Eltee Elite Explorer

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      I still get the pop up boxes instead of pics, the boxes tell me to update my Photobucket acct., etc..

      Something I need to do?
       
    19. zckry

      zckry New Member

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      I'm not the OP so I can't change his photos.
      You'll have to "click to expand" my post up there ^^
       
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    20. Eltee

      Eltee Elite Explorer

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      GOT IT, many thanks. The first week I had my Exp I relied heavily on this excellent tutorial with pics to remove my original grille and replace it with a Sport grille. I managed to get my original out without damage and sold it within 72 hours since it had all the tabs, no cracks, etc.

      Anyway, thanks for reposting the pics.
       
    21. Mr_Fruffles

      Mr_Fruffles Elite Explorer

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      can we get the images reloaded in the instructions?
       
    22. peterk9

      peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      If you are referring to post #1 then I think you're out of luck. That member was last on here March 31, 2015.

      Peter
       
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    23. Roderick112

      Roderick112 New Member

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      hey guys,

      looks like this will be my first post since 2015.. :)

      In short, I have a 2016 Ford Explorer XLT and got a black grill for xmas to replace the original one. After searching this forum I could not find any specific instruction for a 2016 and up and I was hoping these excellent instructions would help me.

      After going thru the different steps, it pretty much stopped after Step 1 for me. Unfortunately, on the 2016 model, it is required to have your whole bumper removed in order to remove and replace the grill...

      I will do my best to describe the various steps I completed performing the replacement. I hope the write-up will help others who are planning on doing the same on a 2016 and up and give them less of a head-ache while doing so...

      Step 1; Follow step 1 above by opening the hood and removing the upper plate. Same number of bolts etc. From here on the instructions are a bit different.
      Step 2; You will have to remove 7 bolts on the inside of the wheel well plus additional plastic rivet fastener screw push pins. There are two of these push pins behind the tire at the bottom, a few on the left side of the wheel and above. It is not required to remove all of them all around the wheel well. I also turned my left wheel all the way to the left for easy access while working on the left front wheel (and vice versa).
      Step 3; At the bottom of the car / wheel well there is a plastic piece that is held in place by 3 bolts. Remove these 3 bolts. You will have to slide under the car to actually see the 3 bolts.
      Step 4; Once you have removed the bolts inside the wheel well, under the car and removed some of the push pins, you should be able to lower your plastic wheel well and let it sit on top of your tire. This will give you "access" to 3 tricky bolts that bolt the plastic bumper to the fender.
      Step 3; Now this is the fun part. For me, removing these 3 bolts was a huge pain due to lack of access. However, it is required to remove the 3 bolts because these bolts attach the bumper to the fender. You will only have access to these 3 bolts via the wheel well you just lowered. You can actually see the bolts through a small "window" next to your headlight unit. This helped me locate the bolts.
      Step 4; After you removed the 3 bolts, you will have to perform the same steps on the other side of the car.
      Step 5; Additionally, underneath the car in the center of the bumper, there are 3 additional bolts you will have to remove. These 3 bolts attach the bumper to the frame of the car.
      Step 6; Once you removed all the bolts and pins on both sides, including the 3 tricky bolts on the left side and the 3 tricky bolts on the right side that attach the bumper to the fender and the extra bolts under the car you can pull back the whole bumper with grill.
      Step 7; For me, there was only one electrical plug on the right side of the bumper (looking towards the car) which I unplugged and I was able to put the front bumper on the ground. Make sure to put it on a blanket or so to prevent it from scratching...
      Step 8; At this point you have full access to the grill and its "wonderful" clips... on the inside of the bumper there is a cover that you will have to remove first and you will also have to unplug the cable than runs from left to right on the inside of the bumper. There is also a small sensor in the center on the inside which you will have to remove first. Now you can remove the actual grill.
      Step 9; After you were able to remove the original grill (without breaking any clips) its very easy to install the new grill. Just align the grill on the bumper and its clips and push them in.
      Step 10; At this point, with the new grill installed onto the bumper, just reverse the process to reinstall and you are done.

      I have some pictures but I am trying to figure out how to upload those..I will get these added to the post as soon as possible.

      Like I said, I hope this will help anyone of you with a 2016 and up Explorer and are planning on replacing the original grill.
       

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