08 Explorer dual heat blower noise (Mr Mousie's wild ride) | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free!

08 Explorer dual heat blower noise (Mr Mousie's wild ride)


Well-Known Member
March 20, 2011
Reaction score
Year, Model & Trim Level
08 LTD
SO I get in the car last night for the first time in about a week. Aways down the road, I turn the heater fan on low. I hear a very faint tick tick tick. I speed it up and it sounds like when you were a kid and you put baseball cards in your spokes to make your bike sound like a motorcycle. Plus the whole dashboard was shaking and vibrating. It sounded like a single engine airplane

I took it apart today. See pics here:


So now the issue remains: How do I get access to the top of the blower housing to get the pine needle mouse nest out of the system? I've got the Ford shop manuals but they don't have any good pictures on that area of the car.

If you look closely at the blower housing pic, you can see a coarse but fine plastic mesh above the housing holding the debris back from getting in the the heating system. (This pic is taken from the passenger floor looking directly up under the dashboard)

How do I get the debris out?



Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!

That is the funniest thing that I have read all week! Sorry for time and effort on your part, but that picture was worth a million bucks!

Your picture looks like one I took of my hamster (~35 years ago) running in its wheel - too funny!

Can you get a shop vac hose to there from the cowl vent?

Laser, glad I could amuse you. :) There is more to it. I took the blower out on Monday. I wrote this on Tuesday, got nothing back so attempted the fix on Thursday. When I opened the passenger door, there were 5 newborn mice squirreling around on the floor mat.

Anyway, once I dispensed with them, I went to work on the unit. I cut and ripped the mesh as best I could. It appeared to be melted or glued in from the top (which I could not easily get at). I ripped as much of the mesh as I could.

Once out, I used a duct tape roll as a template to cut a circle of 1/4" hardware cloth with tinsnips. I gently folded it enough to get it up in the center hole. I then, with one hand and 3 fingers and a thumb, spent the better part of an hour on my back, seat rail carving an imprint in my back trying to get 3 zip ties up, around and through the mesh and the vanes of the blower housing. I twisted the heads of the zip ties inward so they would not interfere with the squirrel cage of the blower.

I took a few pictures, and put it back together. Blower works great on all speeds. No noises or vibration, but it still smells like mouse crap for the first 5 minutes of use.

I looked at the picture after I was all done, and realized the circle is too small. It needs to be about 3/4 to 1" bigger. If more debris gets further down the heater chain, it will be a REAL ***** to clean....

See added picture here:

I am going to do it again over the weekend. (It was SO much fun the first time...) I don't think I can get a piece that big up that hole. I am thinking of cutting the circle bigger, then cutting it in half and "hingeing" the two halves together with zip ties or wire. This way I can fold the two halves over each other, put it up the hole, and then unfold them and zip tie them. Waddya think?

Once I had the mesh out I pulled the nest out by hand (see pic). I DID use a shop vac from the bottom, and got a bit more out. I don't know how to access the top, or where the intake is for fresh air. I presumed it was on top near/under the cowl-grille under the wipers. But I couldn't see it. Do you know where it is?

I set 3 mouse traps in the car last night, and so far the mouse is busting my balls. When I got home from work today (I didn't drive it) I found a lone acorn RIGHT next to the trap. The trap was NOT tripped.


All done: See last picture here:


I STILL want to find out where the air intake is and how to get to it. I want to know how these mice are getting in.

I don't know for sure how to access that intake, but I would think you need to remove the Passenger side Cowl Panel Grille. The instructions are in Section 501-02 of your manual under Body, and then Front end body panels, and then Cowl panel grille.

Here is an extract:

"Remove the wiper pivot arms. For additional information, refer to Section 501-16 .
CAUTION: To avoid breaking the retaining clips on the cowl panel, do not pull up on the rear of the cowl panel.

Pry up on the front of the cowl panel to release it from the retaining clips.
Remove the cowl panel grille.
Separate the left cowl panel from the right cowl panel by releasing the retaining clips.
To install, reverse the removal procedure."

With the removal of the grille you may see the opening for the intake through the firewall. Just a guess based upon how Ford does things.

Good luck.