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2003 Ford Explorer Maintenance

Pilks

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Joined
September 30, 2012
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City, State
Morris County, NJ
Year, Model & Trim Level
2017 Ford Explorer Sport
Hello All

I have a 2003 Ford Explorer XLT (V6) that i purchased from the original owner at 116,000 miles. I now currently have 134,000 miles.

I have replaced all 4 tires, added a K&N Air Filter, and replaced the fuel filter (along with a few other odds and ends). I have the oil changed frequently and want to continue with maintaining my winter beater/daily driver.

I have no idea how long the current spark plugs have been in the engine. But before any catastrophes strike iv been toying with the idea of upgrading and replacing.

I have been thinking about purchasing the following combo:

Ford Truck V6 FirePower Ignition Kit
SKU: 4.0-0207BK
http://performancedistributors.com/product/1602/

Autolite Double Plat/Spark Plug (This brand is recommended by Performance Distributors, and I've read they manufacture motorcraft brand as well)
Part Number: APP103
http://www.autolitesparkplugs.com/product.aspx?zpid=7868

I know this is a more expensive alternative but i can gap these plugs to .060 for added spark and better fuel economy. (Currently getting a best of 18mpg mixed)


Does anyone have any experience with this combo of parts, or either of the two?
Any pictures? Any information would be greatly appreciated.
 


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ponkotsu

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Joined
October 29, 2012
Messages
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City, State
Colorado Springs, CO
Year, Model & Trim Level
2005 Lincoln Aviator
Hello All

I have a 2003 Ford Explorer XLT (V6) that i purchased from the original owner at 116,000 miles. I now currently have 134,000 miles.

I have replaced all 4 tires, added a K&N Air Filter, and replaced the fuel filter (along with a few other odds and ends). I have the oil changed frequently and want to continue with maintaining my winter beater/daily driver.

I have no idea how long the current spark plugs have been in the engine. But before any catastrophes strike iv been toying with the idea of upgrading and replacing.

I have been thinking about purchasing the following combo:

Ford Truck V6 FirePower Ignition Kit
SKU: 4.0-0207BK
http://performancedistributors.com/product/1602/

Autolite Double Plat/Spark Plug (This brand is recommended by Performance Distributors, and I've read they manufacture motorcraft brand as well)
Part Number: APP103
http://www.autolitesparkplugs.com/product.aspx?zpid=7868

I know this is a more expensive alternative but i can gap these plugs to .060 for added spark and better fuel economy. (Currently getting a best of 18mpg mixed)


Does anyone have any experience with this combo of parts, or either of the two?
Any pictures? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

If the plugs have over 100k miles on them it's probably good to replace them. As for the wires, if they are still working and not causing misfires, I'd leave them as is. It's not a part that wears out. More people cause problems changing them if they don't get routed correctly or if they use the wrong wires.

If you read truly objective test reports on plugs, wires and aftermarket ignitions you will see that they are pretty much snake oil. The OEM stuff delivers more than enough spark for the engine. More often than not the aftermarket systems will reduce performance and economy. The PCM is dialed in to work with the OEM equipment so best not to change it. You could purchase a spark tester. If the current system can already deliver a 25k volt spark, then there is no point in fixing it.

If you do run across an ignition system that can prove it improves performance and economy on a stock vehicle via actual dyno and road data, please let me know and I'll buy one also!
 




Homer J

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April 30, 2013
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City, State
St. Mary's County Maryland
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 XLS
My wife drives a 2003 with the 4.0 V-6 that we have owned since new. With over 140K miles the plugs and wires have been in use since it rolled off the assembly line. Don't see a reason to replace them yet.
 




ponkotsu

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City, State
Colorado Springs, CO
Year, Model & Trim Level
2005 Lincoln Aviator
My wife drives a 2003 with the 4.0 V-6 that we have owned since new. With over 140K miles the plugs and wires have been in use since it rolled off the assembly line. Don't see a reason to replace them yet.

I changed the plugs and wires on a 2000 Mounty with 140k on it and saw no difference in how it ran. Plugs didn't look all that bad. Changed the plugs on my Aviator at 145k and again I saw no difference at all. The new HEI are infinitely better than the old distributor systems.
 




MYBAUER

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2003 FORD EXPLORER
My 03 explorer

Not sure if I am making a new post here or replying to one.
But my question is pretty simple.
I am going to change the differential fluid in the read and add friction modifier.
1st step I am trying because of my shudder or vibration when starting out in a turn mostly turning right. It only happens when the rear end is hot.
Cold. It runs and starts out perfectly. BTW there is no noise from rear end. Whining or otherwise.

How many quarts of fluid do I put back in with the friction additive. I assume I will drive it till it is hot then drain it. Then do figure 8's afterwards.
Please anyone?
 




Pilks

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Joined
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Messages
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City, State
Morris County, NJ
Year, Model & Trim Level
2017 Ford Explorer Sport
Anyone have any info on the autolite plugs?
 




esclamada

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October 25, 2010
Messages
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City, State
KCMO
Year, Model & Trim Level
'02 Mountaineer AWD V8




esclamada

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October 25, 2010
Messages
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KCMO
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'02 Mountaineer AWD V8
Not sure if I am making a new post here or replying to one.
But my question is pretty simple.
I am going to change the differential fluid in the read and add friction modifier.
1st step I am trying because of my shudder or vibration when starting out in a turn mostly turning right. It only happens when the rear end is hot.
Cold. It runs and starts out perfectly. BTW there is no noise from rear end. Whining or otherwise.

How many quarts of fluid do I put back in with the friction additive. I assume I will drive it till it is hot then drain it. Then do figure 8's afterwards.
Please anyone?

Buy 2 pints (bottle) of diff fluid. Drain it and put the friction modifier first and then the fluid until it overflows in the fill plug. Depending on the type of your diff some need to fill it up in the sensor hole (RSC).



-----------------------------------------------------------
MY MOUNTY
http://www.facebook.com/diyfordexplorer/photos_albums
 




swshawaii

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City, State
Kailua-Oahu, Hawaii
Year, Model & Trim Level
'05 Sport Trac XLS (RWD)
Ditto ponkotsu and esclamada. If you search the forum, most people that have "upgraded" to the Livewires and Screamin' Demon coil have claimed a slightly smoother idle with no MPG improvement. I've read on several forums where the SD coil had failed for no apparent reason, and was replaced using the stock coil with no perceivable difference in performance. As for plugs, very hard to fault the OEM Motorcraft SP-500 Finewire gapped at .054 and have NEVER seen a single negative about them. If you plan on an extended plug change interval again, highly recommend using a very thin coat of copper or nickel anti sieze on the threads, regardless if the plugs are nickel plated , especially in aluminum cylinder heads. 18 MPG mixed driving is excellent IMO, so many variables there. Finally, most that have done upgrades will claim that an SCT tuner will offer the most bang for the buck. The "other" benefits such as improved shifting, DTC reader, etc., make it an even better value. Apply the $188 you didn't spend on the "Firepower" kit towards a $379 SCT X3 that includes three tunes among other benefits. GL
 




ponkotsu

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Messages
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City, State
Colorado Springs, CO
Year, Model & Trim Level
2005 Lincoln Aviator
I'm an engineer in that has worked in the automotive industry. I know a valid test when I see one. There are lots of legit dyno tests on exhaust systems that clearly show the difference in power. I've even seen tests on air cleaners that clearly show horsepower increases, but those units are pointless on a normal engine and do nothing for fuel efficiency. There are clear differences that can be measured. But I've never seen a legit test on things like spark plugs, fuel treatments, or any of the other snake oils. Accel has a test that shows a horsepower increase using their coils. But, they did not compare with NEW factory coils, they used old worn out ones. And the hp increase was well within the margin for error on the test. Definitely not conclusive by any critical evaluation. (Maybe they actually did 2 tests and one showed a hp decrease?). I did see one test done in Germany on a Halo plug that showed a modest improvement, but it was a sample of one vehicle and it was a 1990 vehicle. Not surprising a modern plug would outperform a 1990 plug in a non OBD vehicle. If somebody actually had a legit test that proved they had a plug or snake oil that actually did something, you can bet they would be shoving it in your face. They don't have one.

The recommendation on the tuner is way better, but even that has some compromises, and it's not cheap. Take a long time to recover the investment if you are only saving 2-5% on gasoline.
 




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