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Lower Air Dam Intake Duct Falls Off / Missing

Discussion in 'Stock 2011 - 2019 Ford Explorer Discussion' started by soloxx, January 16, 2012.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. dfox52

    dfox52 New Member

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    Ya that looks like it... It is actually kinda in the middle and connected to the front frame cross member. I'll try a search on "air intake" or "intake duct." It actually doesn't look like it does much of anything.

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: December 28, 2017
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  3. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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  4. dfox52

    dfox52 New Member

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    Yes I have the factory tow package but have not towed anything since purchasing the vehicle in 2013. I will probably never hook up a trailer. Regardless, I need to find replacement clips to hold this thing in place.
     
  5. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Your thread has been moved to this one.
    See post #109 above. Post #78 also shows some pictures.

    Peter
     
  6. ChicagoTRS

    ChicagoTRS New Member

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    2011 Explorer Limited...and just ran into this issue today after an oil change...go to pull away and got 100 yds and the air dam started dragging. Went back to the oil change place and the guy reinstalled...I drove away and pulled over just to look it over...it was ready to fall off again...one of the retaining clips missing in the square holes so impossible to fasten securely. Was concerned but thanks to this thread I guess the air dam will just find a place in my garage somewhere. It made it 130k miles before failing so that in itself is probably a win.
     
  7. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    It shoundn't be a problem if you don't tow. Strange that it wasn't a problem until this last oil change. I have a feeling they probably lost the clip.

    Peter
     
  8. BaseFan

    BaseFan New Member

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    Looking for opinions.....

    I just replaced the duct , at my cost, because I couldn't really be sure when it went missing....
    Dealer installed it (at no charge) about 2 months ago and I could see it was straight and tight.

    Today, I did the recall of the rear toelinks and as I walked back to the vehicle, I saw the duct was loose and hanging crooked. The dealer checked it and said that one snap clip was gone... probably broke and fell off. They didn't have the parts so they zip-tied for now and ordered the clips, agreeing to buy the clips, this time, even though the recall repair wasn't anywhere near this duct.

    I had a chance to speak to the mechanic, alone and off the record while the service manager and parts department were working out the details. He said he didn't notice whether it was or wasn't hanging crooked as he was working on the rear but he admitted the clips are crap and they hate even touching them as they break alot and they end up using zip-ties. He warned that since they have to remove this for routine service, it will probably happen again if not many times...

    He suggested, off the record, to just take it off, make sure the female parts of the clips are in the framework, and put the male push clips in a baggie and put them in the garage with the duct. He said he has people who only use it when they tow (like noted here) but he said most don't even do that for simple routine towing like an open landscaper trailer. He felt the only time he would reinstall it is if it was him was when he was going to tow over a a couple thousand pounds, like a trailer or boat and it was more than 50 miles.... Otherwise, he would just leave it in the garage until he sold the vehicle.

    I have a few days until the clips come in to decide whether to just have it taken off and store the clips or let them reinstall it and worry about it falling off at highway speed or even every routine service. I am actually concerned about the damage to the vehicle if it did fall off and tangle underneath the car or even cut a tire.

    Since I don't tow, I am thinking about just storing it but would like to hear opinions either way.

    Thanks,
    BaseFan
     
  9. Crates

    Crates New Member

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    When I bought my ‘14 used a few months ago I found that duct to be installed with zip ties as was mentioned in a previous post. Some of the factory metal clips were either missing or rotten. Not being one to rely on zip ties for anything but wiring harnesses, I removed the remaining clips and welded in three M8 nuts into the frame at the appropriate places. Three M8 bolts, coated in anti-seize, now secure the duct to the frame the way it should have been done at the factory in the first place. Only takes a couple minutes to remove during an oil change but I have piece of mind knowing it won’t ever fall off.

    While I don’t tow with my Ex, that duct serves to blow ambient air primarily on the PTU, which needs all the help it can get :)
     
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  10. BaseFan

    BaseFan New Member

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    Crates.... Thanks for your input.

    I have seen multiple responses that it directs air to the turbos, or the oil cooler, or the PTU (as you said).

    My thought was it is for the extra oil cooler that only comes with the towing package.

    Since all 4WD models have a PTU, wouldn't all 4WD models need it?
    Rather than only the ones with the towing package?

    Since the ductwork is linked to the towing package, which includes an additional oil cooler, it seems logical that it would have to direct air to the additional oil cooler.... just my thoughts...

    If it is for the PTU, then I see it as critical, but if it is for the extra oil cooler, than leaving it off seems to be fine if not towing as you don't need the extra oil cooler unless you are towing because you wouldn't even have the extra oil cooler without the towing package.

    I like your idea of a fix and it probably should have been done that way at the factory but it is not fix I can do and I would have to explain how to remove it to the mechanic every time I got an oil change....

    Any other ideas?????
     
  11. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Explorers without the tow package but with the Ecoboost engine have the same cutout and air dam.

    Peter
     
  12. BaseFan

    BaseFan New Member

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    So if we look at it logically........ then the duct is needed for either the towing oil cooler or the turbos.
    Since the 4WD without towing doesn't have it, it can't be for the PTU...... Correct???

    So if it is not for the PTU it must be either for the turbos or towing oil cooler... since my vehicle doesn't have turbos... it should be only for the towing oil cooler. Since vehicles without towing don't even need the extra oil cooler, the duct should only really be needed if towing... Correct???

    Does that sound like the most likely reason?
     
  13. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Correct, if you have the tow package. It is discussed on page 1 of this thread.

    Peter
     
  14. Crates

    Crates New Member

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    All Ford oil coolers I have ever dealt with were water to oil. The PTU cooler wasn’t added until 2016? I think. My ‘14 doesn’t have one.

    If you look at where the duct terminates it essentially blows toward the exhaust pipe and PTU. The turbos on the sport model are further outboard so it wasn’t added for them.
     
  15. peterk9

    peterk9 Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    I was going by what other members have posted about the duct cooling the rear turbo on Ecoboost Explorers without the tow package. Otherwise, why would those have the air duct when non-turbo Explorers don't have it if it was just there for the PTU?

    Peter
     
  16. Keith N

    Keith N Elite Explorer

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    Towing heats up the catalytic converters more than normal while towing. The rear cat is next to the ptu and as a result will heat up the ptu in addition to the normal heat from gears inside the ptu rubbing and turning. The air duct helps take away some of this added heat while towing. I would keep the air duct in place in all cases, towing or not, as this ptu has proven to not be very reliable as it is (Search ptu in this forum). It literally needs all the help it can get. Once the oil in the ptu is overheated your ptu is headed for failure.

    I’ve done my own oil changes up to 100k and have not had an issue with the factory clips coming loose. They are a bit hokey, but will hold fine if latched completely imho.
     
    Last edited: July 14, 2019
  17. BaseFan

    BaseFan New Member

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    Thanks for the advice. I think I will let the dealer reinstall and keep an eye on it.

    As I looked back over this post, I was looking at the clips that fit in a square holes that seem to be the problem and a thought came to me.... Could you swap in licence plate fasteners and bolts? The kind that have a nylon nut/anchor which snaps into a 1/4" square hole and putting the bolt through as you thread it in, it expands and holds it. If it works, it would be a much more stable solution.

    My time of crawling under cars is past so I can't check myself.... but here are the fasteners...

    https://www.autozone.com/screws-pin...14-m6-square-nylon-insert-push-nut/730495_0_0

    or in a larger pack....

    https://www.autozone.com/screws-pin...n-group-license-plate-fastener-kit/551584_0_0

    What do you think? Could this work?
     
  18. Keith N

    Keith N Elite Explorer

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    I bet you could get a lot of things to work and I can’t speak to the above. I would put in new ford clips and be done with it personally. Ford spent the most time of anyone designing and testing them and I felt they were adequate on the dozen oil changes I did.
     
  19. BaseFan

    BaseFan New Member

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    I am going to let the dealer reinstall the duct with the factory clips.
    I just don't want to keep buying new ducts after they fall off. I just bought a new one the end of April and the new one was already coming loose. They said one of the clips had already fallen off. The dealer is standing by it and is ordering the clips but I don't like to have to check it is there and tight every time I use the vehicle or get it serviced.
     

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