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PTU and Engine Oil Change...

ecoboost_xsport

Mad Scientist
Elite Explorer
Joined
March 29, 2015
Messages
566
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294
City, State
Orangevale, California
Year, Model & Trim Level
2015 Ford Explorer Sport
So you guys know I did the RDU the other day. Also I'm putting the trans fluid change on hold until I can get a true fluid exchange done since I'm changing fluid types. Anyway, got the engine oil done as well as the PTU done.

Engine Oil: Pretty straight forward, just showing you guys the switch I made from el cheapo middle of the road Pennzoil stuff to some better Amsoil fluid and filter...

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Oil filter is about 33% larger than that cheap service station filter I had on there...btw, I WON'T be changing that filter after 25,000 miles, lol.

Onto the PTU. I am still experimenting with beefing up the PTU I have on my bench, but in the meantime, I am still running my original one and decided to do the drain plug and vent tube extension mod.

This PTU fluid is coming from somewhere. Top of the vent tube and vent tube hose was clean, so wondering if it is leaking from somewhere else.
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I like the idea of having the drain on the lowest point to get all of it out, so I bypassed the existing drain port and just added the bottom one. I was only able to drain out 12 ounces...so 6 ounces disappeared somewhere. When I drilled the hole for the bottom drain, I stuck a paperclip in there (bent like and "L") and spun it around to see if any grease or sludge would be on it as maybe those 6 ounces converted to "grease", but, to my surprise, came out clean. IDK...weird. I never had an oily spot on my driveway.

Drain plug installed...matched my RDU drain plug. Also put heatshrink around it to keep the cap from ever spinning off.
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Love the v-bands...so easy, LOL:
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With removal of the front downpipe, I could very easily get to the top vent. By feel of course, but very easy to reach. Added the hose and was able to get this clamp on tight:
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Used this tool to tighten it blind. Was pretty easy actually:
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Bttom end buttoned up:
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Removal of the vent cap and placed this barbed fitting for filling only:
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Since I only needed 18 ounces, and there's 32 in the quart pack, I poured out 14 ounces and storing it in another bottle for later:
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IV bottle style fill job:
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Hole was punctured in bottom of pouch. Even so, it really did take quite awhile. I let it hang there in the hot sun so it got very viscous, I'm sure, but still took a few hours to drain. On the new PTU, I will be adding a second fill line next to the vent port. This will keep from fighting the air coming up.

Installed vent cap, zip tied it off to the side and all done!
 



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Awesome! The V bands were such a good idea.
 












I did something similar except i tied a funnel using a coat hanger and filled it. Then mounted a heat light about a foot away. Still took hours haha

Some people use a big syringe and take turns filling it that way. Either way, its a time consuming job
 






Is drilling pretty straight forward?
 






Is drilling pretty straight forward?

yes, not really too big a deal. there is a specific palce to put it and you may have to drop the front downpipe to get to it as I can't recall how easy it is to access witht he stock exhaust system. But the actual drilling/tapping is easy
 






I did something similar except i tied a funnel using a coat hanger and filled it. Then mounted a heat light about a foot away. Still took hours haha

Some people use a big syringe and take turns filling it that way. Either way, its a time consuming job

Yeah, the issue is, the oil going down that line is fighting the displaced air coming back up the same line. It helps to try and heat the oil (the day I did it, it was 97deg out and ther sun was hitting the bag directly, so it helped) to thin it out somewhat. Since it is a sealed case (except for the vent), the air has nowhere else to go. That syringe idea scares me, you are basically pressurizing the case and have the potential to push oil out past the seals if you do it too much. That air you are displacing has to go somewhere, and the syringe method doesn't allow for it to go anywhere. Once that happens, you've just introduced a new leak point...

The better answer is to add a second vent/fill line to the case. It's one of the mods I'm doing on the PTU I have sitting on my workbench.
 






Yeah, the issue is, the oil going down that line is fighting the displaced air coming back up the same line. It helps to try and heat the oil (the day I did it, it was 97deg out and ther sun was hitting the bag directly, so it helped) to thin it out somewhat. Since it is a sealed case (except for the vent), the air has nowhere else to go. That syringe idea scares me, you are basically pressurizing the case and have the potential to push oil out past the seals if you do it too much. That air you are displacing has to go somewhere, and the syringe method doesn't allow for it to go anywhere. Once that happens, you've just introduced a new leak point...

The better answer is to add a second vent/fill line to the case. It's one of the mods I'm doing on the PTU I have sitting on my workbench.

Exactly! I used a funnel and mine would glug when the air bubble comes up or it would hydrolock in the tube. I ended up using a smaller hole in the fill bottle to let it drip in slowly so prevent hydrolocking the small tube.
 






Is there just a small fitting on the top of the PTU or an existing vent hose? I don't recall seeing a vent hose but maybe I need to go look at a few other threads on the PTU and check again.
 






There is a vent tube that connects on the top of the PTU. You can pull it off and put on your own hose. It is very hard to see. I think I used a mirror from under the vehicle but mostly did it by feel. It is there. You won't think it is because a quick look under the hood won't find anything. But look/feel on top of the PTU.
 






Is there just a small fitting on the top of the PTU or an existing vent hose? I don't recall seeing a vent hose but maybe I need to go look at a few other threads on the PTU and check again.

It's a vent hose. About 10" long with a vent cap push into it. Here's the barbed fitting for the vent hose:

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I thought I had a better pic of the hose but apparently I don't LOL...it's in the bottom left of this pic:
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As mentioned, you need to put it on by feel. The best way to reach it, I found, was to lay on your back, feet toward the front of the vehicle, reaching up the driver's side of the PTU. It will be awkward, but you'll feel it. I was even able to put a hose clamp on it that way (don't need one, but I did anyway).
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Using this tool setup:
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I was able to jamb my phone up there to snap pics...couldn't see what I was taking pictures of so I had to snap a bunch to be able to pick out some in-focus ones, LOL.
 






Don't forget the service bulletin that said to put a hose clamp on the vent tube. Don't have the number handy.
 






Don't forget the service bulletin that said to put a hose clamp on the vent tube. Don't have the number handy.

Oh, cool, didn't know there was a service bulletin for that...I just did it anyway, LOL.
 












There was another one I saw somewhere
 






That diagram was helpful in there. Even with it I couldn’t see it under all the other tubes. But the top of mine looks wet. I guess next is to start poking around underneath and see if there is a clamp on the other end.
What size tubing did you all use when you replaced yours?
 












As mentioned above you couldn’t over pressure the ptu. If that was the case you’d blow the seals the first time the fluid warmed up.
 






As mentioned above you couldn’t over pressure the ptu. If that was the case you’d blow the seals the first time the fluid warmed up.
Correct, the fluid would push passed the seals before that would happen. One of the reasons why I cringe when folks say they use a pump to fill the PTU oil after doing this vent modification. That just pressurizes the case and could potentially push oil passed the seals. It takes a long time for the fluid to fill, and it's because, after doing the vent mod, the fluid going down that tube has to fight the air coming back up as its being displaced by the oil. The answer is not pumping to speed up the process, but to have another way for the air to escape. Heating the oil helps a bit. Next time I have the PTU exposed, I'll drill another vent hole up top to be the vent for that escaping air.

Something like this, but maybe not so large then run another hose alongside the other one...there's plenty of room underneath:

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What years did the explorer not have or did have a drain plug on the PTU?
 






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