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Main Rear Seal

KajunBndit

Well-Known Member
Joined
July 16, 2013
Messages
215
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2
City, State
Theriot, LA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2004ExplorerSportTrac XLT
It's be a long, long, long time that I had changed a rear main seal. I have a 2004 Ford Sport Trac. Today I went to get my truck serviced for one minor thing now I am being told that I need to have a rear main seal and bottom oil pan gasket changed. I don't doubt that I have a leak, I have been smelling a burnt oil smell in the last 2 weeks and I did ask if they could find a oil leak for me. I bought the seal and oil pan gasket, now I just need some moral support. Like I said earlier, it's been a long long time. I think the last time I had changed a main bearing seal was on a 1978 Chevy Nova when I was 19 years old. I am about to be 53 years old next month. LOL. I have the tools that I need, Anything I should know? Tips? Any advice would be appreciated!
 



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Have you checked the valve covers? Mine were leaking in the back next to the firewall. Dave P.
 






No, I haven't. I had asked someone @ the shop to see if they can find a oil leak and 30 minutes later he had told me that I needed to replace the main rear seal and the lower oil pan gasket.
 






The lower pan gasket is easy to change (maybe harder on a 4x4). The rear main seal requires the transmission and flywheel/flexplate to be removed. I believe the 4.0L SOHC engine uses a one piece rear main seal.

I had fairly terrible leaks on my '01 ST. Most of which were being caused by the valve cover gaskets. I changed the valve cover gaskets and that eliminated 99% of the oil leaks. While it's not a simple job to change the valve cover gaskets, it's easier that removing a transmission. I also replaced my intake manifold O-rings (which probably wasn't necessary). The only tool I had to buy was for the intake manifold bolts, as you need a long torx bit that will fit down a hole in the intake to reach the 4 bolts that hold the one-piece Job 2 intake manifold on. I bought a set of long torx bits at Tractor Supply for the job.
 






Would you think I would have to remove the exhaust? I don't mind removing the transmission, I know I didn't remove the exhaust on the 78 chevy nova because it had a true duel system and wasn't in the way. I just don't know about this Sport Trac and it is a 2 wheel drive.
I guess when I start this job if I can find a couple of able bodies to help me, I will be taking pictures of what I am doing and progress. I don't believe that I have any oil leaks from the valve cover, I did look @ it yesterday and it is pretty clean on top and motor, I just haven't laid on the ground yet, hard for me to get back up LMAO!
 






Would you think I would have to remove the exhaust? I don't mind removing the transmission, I know I didn't remove the exhaust on the 78 chevy nova because it had a true duel system and wasn't in the way. I just don't know about this Sport Trac and it is a 2 wheel drive.
I guess when I start this job if I can find a couple of able bodies to help me, I will be taking pictures of what I am doing and progress. I don't believe that I have any oil leaks from the valve cover, I did look @ it yesterday and it is pretty clean on top and motor, I just haven't laid on the ground yet, hard for me to get back up LMAO!

If it's 2WD removing the lower oil pan to replace the gasket is a piece of cake. Just remove the 10-12 bolts. Nothing is in the way.

I'm pretty sure you're exhaust will be in the way of removing the transmission. I assume a '78 Nova didn't have catalytic converters and a single exhaust cross-over pipe in the way.
 






LoL, No the 78 Nova had true duel exhaust on it.
I have a friend from church coming tomorrow and my brother-in-law to come help me. we should be able to knock it out tomorrow. Do I need any special tool to remove and install the main bearing seal. I have purchased a pick set. I was reading my haynes book on the sport trac, It said to empty the fluids in the transmission. I really don't want to do that but if I have to, I will.
 






I don't know why you would need to empty the fluid from the trans, other than when you pull the drive shaft the oil will start spilling out. You might consider leaving the drive shaft in the tail-shaft, though it will make it harder to manage. Also, You'll probably need to remove the dip stick tube and then you'll need to plug that hole with something. Back when I pulled manual transmissions out regularly I had some spare yokes and plastic tools to plug the tail-shaft. I think you're going to be in for a real messy job unless you can plug the dip stick hole with a plug. That's why they're saying to drain it first.

As the rear main seal is one-piece I'm thinking it will be like any other round seal. If that's the case I'm thinking removing the seal would require a seal removal tool and that you'd need something to drive the new seal in with, but as I've never done one on a SOHC engine I can't really say. What does the manual show?
 






Thank you Koda, I guess I will have to go rent a seal puller tomorrow morning. I guess I will drain the fluid from the transmission and while I am doing that change the transmission filter while I have it down. I will have to undo the dipstick from the tranny. I don't like to work in mess if I don't have to. I will be taking pictures as I do all of these procedures.
 






Thank you Koda, I guess I will have to go rent a seal puller tomorrow morning. I guess I will drain the fluid from the transmission and while I am doing that change the transmission filter while I have it down. I will have to undo the dipstick from the tranny. I don't like to work in mess if I don't have to. I will be taking pictures as I do all of these procedures.

Buy the seal tool, they're pretty cheap. They kind of look like a flattened claw hammer.
 






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