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08 4.6l exhaust manifold leak, snapped bolts


pjw73nh

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Greetings,

See my earlier post here:

http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=331412

I use my 08 'splorer Ltd with 4.6l primarily for towing a 6000 lb (true weight) trailer. I tow about 2500 miles per summer, and drive it about 2000 miles the rest of the year. a low-use vehicle.

The upper exhaust manifold bolt from the #1 cylinder is missing.

https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/fy8uHynVoGmuMNVM2DGlDJKVgip1PxB-Ub0Z9NWx1CQ?feat=directlink

My guess is that it was there when I bought the vehicle In April of last year with 63k miles on it and it snapped off sometime since. Now I have 67k on it. And of course I hear the tick tick tick at cold start up. It goes away after 45-90 seconds depending on ambient temp.

Looked at the job. Though fairly mechanically inclined, I don't want to do it. Very close quarters, I have no lift to speak of, snapping more bolts off, drilling, welding, chance of water jacket perforation. All of this adds up to me not wanting to do the job. That said, I don't want to pay a buttload (dealer) to have it done either.

The only way I would consider repairing this is if I KNEW for certain what the underlying cause was and that it was fixed before going through the trouble of removing and reinstalling the manifold. No one seems to know what the root cause is. Defective manifold? Bolts? Head? poor assembly skills? etc.

My main question is: What is the risk if I do nothing? Will it get worse? How much worse? Will it cause any FURTHER damage? What are the consequences of doing nothing?

Thanks.
 


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EX-SV

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What is typical cost of having this fixed at dealer?
 




pjw73nh

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I guess that's part of my question. I can't seem to get a straight answer. Until we know if it's a bad manifold, bad assembly process, defective bolts it's hard to tell. I had one place tell me that R&R manifold and drill out *one* bolt was about 8+ hours labor.
 




Explorer_PL

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06EB V8
I have had it for about 10-15 k miles. Drives me nuts sometimes but goes away like you said after 30-45 seconds.

Mine is 06 V8, 129k miles.
 




feetwet

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keep me in the loop if anyone gets an estimate... mine is leaking at startup too.

The potential risks I see this exposes are :
1> hot exhast gas in the engine compartment blowing on things not intended for the heat
2> potential for Carbon Monoxide to be ingested into cabin vents
 




bojans

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I decided to let the ticking occur when the shop gave me the times to pull the head on that motor. Book time is only 1 hour more to pull the whole engine...
 




EX-SV

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^ Is pulling head part of process to fix?
 




Explorer_PL

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I am waiting (really hoping it will be a long while) that when I need to do the exhaust manifolds, I'll do also the timing chain with guides and probably pull the engine then, or pull the heads off. I am not sure you can drill and tap the holes in the head thru the wheel well, but I may be wrong.
 




va2explorer

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My 06 4.6 has the same exhaust leak problem w/2bolts broken on the right side and 1bolt broke on the left. It was already like that when I bought it with 52k miles on it, and I am now @ 103k. The leak has never gotten any worse and it still goes away after 45 seconds or so. There has been no mechanical related problems because of the leak, and a CO test indicated CO levels were normal in the passenger compartment.
 




bojans

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^ Is pulling head part of process to fix?
If they can't drill out a broken bolt due to engine compartment interference, yes.

When I trade it in I will just make sure it is good and warm....
 




pjw73nh

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My 06 4.6 has the same exhaust leak problem w/2bolts broken on the right side and 1bolt broke on the left. It was already like that when I bought it with 52k miles on it, and I am now @ 103k. The leak has never gotten any worse and it still goes away after 45 seconds or so. There has been no mechanical related problems because of the leak, and a CO test indicated CO levels were normal in the passenger compartment.
Va2, This is good to know. As long as I am sure it won't get worse (I have already tested in-cab CO levels... (0 ppm)), I am going to let a "sleeping dog lie".

And like Bojans said, when I trade, give it back them nice and warm. Not that they care. the repair cost to them is negligible.
 




grandmasterlarry

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does the manifold use bolts or studs off the head? giving i have heard this happening a lot it might be a good idea to look into getting some ARP bolts and replacing them before they brake.
 




saefjordan

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Hey all, I just got my 2007 Explorer back from Royal Oak Ford for having #1 cylinder bolt cracked off and leaking. They ended up breaking two more bolts off in the head and werent able to get one out when trying to replace the manifold. But, I guess they acutally got 10 threads deep into it and JB Welded it for a fix. 4 days in the shop. Anyways, I got whammyed with $642 in labor charges. It wouldve been 1100 if I hadnt bought the new manifold from fordparts.com for the 2009 explorer which is the same as the 07 and 08. You can get the manifold for only $130 on there. Im sure it will go up once they realize it though. This was not fun....
 




EX-SV

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^ saefjordan - Thanks for useful report. Sounds like a $1000 in round numbers would be typical repair cost, wonderful.
 




resq302

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Our 05 Explorer limited had the same issue with a couple studs breaking off on the pass side. We just ended up trading it in on a 08 Eddie Bauer V-6 that had 15,000 miles. The 05 had 117,000 when we got rid of it.
 




scubat

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Getting ready to bring in my 06 Eddie Bauer V8 with 75k on it that I have owned since new to have the Ticking noise looked at again as I am 99% sure it is a leaking manifold. I brought it to the local dealer 6 months ago and they said the Ticking noise is normal and that nothing could be done to fix it! I am sure they just didn't want to deal with it as it is not an easy job.

I am still under Fords Premier Extended Warranty and want it taken care of before the warranty runs out. I am taking it to a different Ford dealer this time and hopefully they will take care of it. Any advice as to how to argue my case with the dealer to get this fixed? I got Ford Corporate involved last time and they scolded me for calling them and also told me it is a normal Ticking noise.

If the truck is in park and simply idling, yes the tick goes away after a minute or so but as soon as you put it in drive and pull away with the windows down you can still hear the Ticking for another couple minutes echoing off buildings and houses. The Ticking does eventually go away but probably because the metal or gasket expands and closes the leak. This is not normal though! Will keep you all posted as to how this other dealer handles it.
 




EX-SV

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I'm pretty sure if I took my out of warranty Explorer went into Ford service department with a ticking noise, they would quote a nice big number to fix it.

scubat - Looking forward to seeing how other dealer handles it.
 




vipersinu2

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my manifold is getting worse, has anybody had suscess with out breaking off studs? any tips? I really want to change manifold and gasket. any advice would be great.
 




resq302

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hate to say it but if you are getting a leaking manifold already, chances are you already have at least one broken stud.
 


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scubat

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I'm pretty sure if I took my out of warranty Explorer went into Ford service department with a ticking noise, they would quote a nice big number to fix it.

scubat - Looking forward to seeing how other dealer handles it.
No doubt about that! Will keep you posted on my outcome.
 




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