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How to: 2011+ Grille Removal with pictures

Drako99

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2013 Explorer XLT
So after reading many many threads asking the same thing about how to remove the grill on a 2011+ Explorer I got the gist of it and tackled it myself.

I completed the plasti dip of my grill but forgot to take pictures along the way so I went back and removed the grill AGAIN and took some pictures along the way.

This is to help supplement the many other grill removal threads out there and I hope it helps.


Front Grille
20140821_153431_zps787fe24b.jpg


Step 1 - Open Hood, get 10mm Socket and small flat screwdriver
Remove SEVEN (7) of the 10 mm bolts circled in GREEN and the TWO (2) push rivet fasteners circled in RED
edit1_zps18161fb5.jpg

20140821_153734_zpsf7cd0402.jpg

20140821_153850_zps4c1b1c85.jpg


The top plastic cover then should come off freely
20140821_153928_zps68fed0aa.jpg


Step 2 - VERY GENTLY pry the grille away from the engine compartment and tilt it forward to expose the FOUR (4) very tricky nuts (10mm). TWO (2) are near the middle, and are the easier of the 4. The other TWO (2) are down by the headlights and are VERY tricky/hard to remove
edit4_zps0a293643.jpg

You can see the back side of the bolt, which has the nut on it, at the tips of my fingers. This is one of the center ones.
20140821_154101_zps477ae368.jpg

Just above the White pointer stick (very technical) is the back of the bolt showing the nut near the passenger side headlight.
20140821_154153_zpsa9a8f636.jpg


Step 3 - Remove the grille

This can be very tricky so TAKE YOUR TIME
Seen here is the back of the grill, circled in RED are the FOUR (4) bolts that had the nuts on them. Circled in GREEN are the SIX (6) clips holding the bumper in place. Careful, I broke one doing this write up.
edit6_zpsb2829ba1.jpg

edit5_zps98f5112d.jpg


Grilel removed -
20140821_160529_zps95a7dd38.jpg



Reverse the process to reinstall,

Hope this helps!!!
 
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Rick

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Drako, I just split your post off into it's own thread and made it a sticky post.

I also set you up with a 6 month Elite membership for your very informative article.:thumbsup:
 
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nrochwal

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Turned out awesome!

How many cans of plastidip did you use on the grille? Did you use the glossifier?
 
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Drako99

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I used 1.5 cans. No glossifier
 
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MikeCallery

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Great article on removing the grille, thank you.

I am wondering if anyone has ever played with the air intake and what the implications would be of enlarging it?
 
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Mondak

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This is fantastic. Any information about the plastidip process itself you want to impart?

Either way, great work.
 
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Zach7

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Great post and pictures for this removal. Thanks!
 
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RandyH2

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Great post. Thanks for taking the time!
 
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mmartin028

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Thanks for the write up and the photos.

I want to plastidip the grille without taking it off. After removing the top screws and the plastic piece, is it possible to pull the grille forward enough to put a piece of cardboard or something to block the radiator from being painted while painting the grille?
 
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Hughhefnerjr

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Thanks for the write up and the photos.

I want to plastidip the grille without taking it off. After removing the top screws and the plastic piece, is it possible to pull the grille forward enough to put a piece of cardboard or something to block the radiator from being painted while painting the grille?

How do this work out for you? I'm thinking of doing the same with my 2016. Getting in there to remove those nuts is difficult and you're sure to break at least one clip attempting removal.
 
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Scarey118

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Any update on plastidipping without taking the grill all the way off? I just bought a few cans last night to do the chrome explorer on the back and the grill
 
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mmartin028

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Yes, you can plastidip your grille without taking it off.

Just remove the 7 bolts and 2 plastic fasteners (shown on step one above) and gently pull the grill forward. It will give you enough room to put some paper or cardboard between the inside of the grille and the radiator.

I used a few coats of glossifier to get the shine.

front-2-small.jpg


front-1-small.jpg
 
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kaotikgood

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Very useful!

I will be doing this on a 2016 this afternoon and will take picture for picture if you would like to add them under each of yours to include the 2016 - 2017 models. I'm sure the differences are subtle at worst but I love me some pictures!
 
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peterk9

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Very useful!

I will be doing this on a 2016 this afternoon and will take picture for picture if you would like to add them under each of yours to include the 2016 - 2017 models. I'm sure the differences are subtle at worst but I love me some pictures!
As an Elite member, thank you by the way, you can post pictures right from your computer and some devices (I think) by using the "Upload a File" feature.

Peter
 
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mrnavy2

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I want to also do mine and the 2 chrome strips
 
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peterk9

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Did mine today
AF5C48D6-A76F-48C8-AB3C-7DF887F60AAA_zpsjtmkl0o7.jpg
Looks great. I'm a big fan of leaving the chrome strips the way they are. Another member did the same thing quite a while ago. I think it's much 'richer' looking then full black.

Peter
 
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