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How to: Replace Gaskets On The 4.0 OHV Oil Filter Adapter / Mount

fast_dave

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'98 Spt 4.0 OHV 5 spd 4x4
This 4.0 OHV repair guide will cover how to replace the (3) O-Rings that seal the Oil Filter Adapter (mount) to the engine block.

At approximately 180,000 miles, my Ex's 4.0 began weeping oil from the Oil Filter Adapter. This first showed up as a thin stream of oil, leading to the bottom of the oil filter. As my Ex approached 200,000 miles, it only got worse, to the point where the top area of the adapter became coated in a mixture of oil & road dust, and oil dripped on the garage floor.

I researched the problem, and found that although it was written about, no one had made a picture heavy guide that could help out someone who had worked with wrenches, but was afraid to step up to the plate without some pics.

The following repair is about a 5 on a scale of 1-10; with 1 being the easiest and 10 being the hardest. The part you need to pay the most attention to is proper (safe) preparation of lifting all four corners of your Explorer HIGH in the air so you have room to work and drop the exhaust system "Y" pipe. The second part that is kind of tricky is the actual removing and re-installing of the exhaust system "Y" pipe - it's bulky. The rest of the repair is basically "plug and play".

NOTE: The reason why you have to remove the Exhaust System "Y" Pipe is due to clearance - or lack thereof. The bolt that fastens the Oil Filter Adapter to the engine block cannot be completely unscrewed from the engine without hitting the Passenger Side Exhaust Pipe that connects directly to the exhaust manifold - see Picture 5 below and you'll see what I mean.

OK - With that said, before lifting your Ex in the air, and supporting the front and rear with jack stands, loosen the lug nuts on the Driver & Passenger Side Wheels. The front wheels will be removed when your Ex in in the air, so as to easily access to the engine compartment.

The 1st picture shows the view of the engine compartment from the passenger side wheel well. Some years ago I removed the rubber flaps that cover the upper front suspension, that's why you have a clear view of the engine block. The top of the (2) 13mm Bolts that hold connect the exhaust manifold to the "y" pipe were sprayed down with PB Blaster the night before the repair. Do this on BOTH sides of the engine! NOTE: check out all of the motor oil/dirt collected on top of and around the oil filter adapter!

UKgVYTx.jpg


The next picture shows the O2 Sensor green/white connector that needs to be unplugged.

NOTE: Un-plug the O2 sensor connector on the Drivers side as well.

Move the O2 sensor wiring out of the way, so they don't get tangled up when you remove the "Y" pipe.

q72k0FG.jpg


I made a little cheat sheet guide for re-installation of the exhaust bolts.

FQorZHG.jpg


Leave the OIL FILTER on so you don't get oil dripping all over you - I'll let you know when to take it off!

OK - use a 13MM socket, and remove the (2) exhaust bolts from both sides of the engine.

0TUEdyW.jpg


mOdYoJy.jpg


The night before your repair, REALLY SOAK the (3) Nuts on the 1st Catalytic Converter with PB Blaster (Note the emphasis on "really"). Lots of heat in that area so the nuts are on there pretty good ;-)

Remove all (3) nuts with a 13MM ratcheting wrench OR deep well socket.

GIYhcRP.jpg


Now's the time to remove the Oil Filter!

Take an adult beverage break and let the oil drip into your drip pan - the more that goes in the pan is the less that drips down your arm!

When the oil stops dripping down make sure to move your drip pan out of the immediate area.

You DO NOT want the "Y" Pipe falling down and hitting a pan full of used motor oil...


tDf3CDp.jpg


It's now time to remove the "Y" pipe assembly.

This is accomplished with a combination of graceful moves; pulling down and pushing forward.

No need to fight it with brute force - removal is better accomplished with small well-thought moves and finesse.

ujLQ6Em.jpg


OK - here's the deal on how the fun begins ;-)

When my engine was assembled in Cologne, Germany; they chose to really lay on the grey engine paint both ON and AROUND the Oil Filter Adapter bolt.

During 20 years of operation, that engine paint has really baked solid and hard...

When you look at the picture below, note how you can see cracked paint INSIDE of the 10MM Hex Key Bolt.

Yes - they painted the inside of the bolt where the hex key socket goes...

rd9TlWZ.jpg


This step is accomplished via the Passenger Side Wheel Well.

Tools Used:
1/2" Breaker Bar with a Cheater Pipe connected to a 3/8" step-down adapter socket, connected to (2) 1 foot long 3/8" Extensions connected to a 10MM Hex Key Socket.

To get the 10MM Hex Key Socket SECURELY inside the Oil Filter Adapter Bolt, I had to tap it in with a 4lb sledge hammer.

I probably could have used a smaller hammer - but I like the effect it has in the photo below ;-)

The reason I tapped in the hex key socket is because I wanted to ensure that I did not strip the inside surface that the hex key came in contact with.

When I hooked everything up to the Oil Filter Adapter bolt, I I literally had to go lefty loosey / counterclockwise 22 degrees off of perfectly horizontal before I heard a "bang" - and the paint surrounding the Oil Filter Adapter Bolt finally broke, allowing the bolt to loosened.

My heart skipped a beat when I heard that "bang" - this was the scariest part of the repair - as I didn't know if the bolt broke free OR if I snapped the bolt the block (it's hollow to allow oil to pass through it) ;-)


xmcCYsa.jpg
 


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fast_dave

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'98 Spt 4.0 OHV 5 spd 4x4
Here's what you see when you remove the Oil Filter Adapter.

Notice after 20 years how the "main" orange colored o-ring welded part of itself to the block.

NOTE: Make sure and wipe all that orange rubber off with a high nap towel and parts cleaner before re-installing the newly gasketed Oil Filter Adapter or you'll surely have leaks...

6kEqGfI.jpg


(3) O-RingsTOTAL: green, orange and black.

The Green one is FORD #E9TZ-6749-A (FORD only - no aftermarket) from $4 - $40 on Ebay.
The reason of the wide price range is that FORD packed them (10) to a package.
I found an Ebay dealer that had (1) left in a package and he did me a solid at $4.00 Shipped

The Orange one Fel-Pro #72884 for $1.50 at Rock Auto.

The Black one pictured is Mahle / Victor #72115 for .63 at Rock Auto.
NOTE: If you want a Black one manufactured by FORD, the part number is E3TZ-6749-A
Look for one on Ebay - prices are all over the map!

ceBxjWK.jpg


The factory original Black O-Ring that goes on the Adapter Bolt and into the engine block cracked into three pieces when I attempted to remove it.

It was cooked HARD and SOLID.

OJ7aNeA.jpg


A pic with all the parts numbers for someones Google Image search :)

FT5cc1Q.jpg


With regards to the Oil Filter Adapter, clean off all the oil that had varnished wherever a O-Ring is installed.

In my case, this was very noticeable where the Orange O-Ring goes.

Also - I like to coat new O-Rings with this stuff.

Torque the Oil Filter Adapter Hex Bolt to 40 Ft Lbs

Reassemble everything in reverse order - no guide for this as it's not Rocket Science ;-)

YiAEJD1.jpg


I found out that the shop that replaced my clutch a few years back had installed the incorrect exhaust gasket between the Catalytic Converter and the "Y" Pipe output.

Notice that their solution worked in the short term - that being giving the customer back their Ex. BUT - notice the soot on the gasket - exhaust gas majorly leaked at two points.

I found the correct exhaust gasket at O'Reily auto parts for $9.99: Walker #31609

I can't believe how what a difference it made when everything was buttoned up, and I'm driving around - especially on the freeway.

Tighten down the "Y" Pipe to the Catalytic Converter so as to take up all the air gap between the connection point. I did this with a 13MM Ratcheting Wrench so I din't over-torque and break/snap any of the fittings.

9IiCJpM.jpg


That's all - I hope that this guide makes someone's life on the forum a little easier.

IMHO: Set aside at least 4-5 hours in TOTAL for the preparation of lifting your Ex as well as the repair.

Have plenty of clean rags and parts cleaner, as you'll probably want to wipe down some of the on the frame rail/engine/transmission area that you regularly access to change your oil filter.
 








fast_dave

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Wilmoth1989

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Amazing write up! I’ve been dreading this for so long, but it’s no longer ignorable! I have faith it can be done after reading this! Thanks fast_dave!​
 




410Fortune

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geeeeeeesh super impressive how to!!
 








239

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After wrenching on the Explorer during 9 hot Florida summers, this is a job I’ll leave to the shop haha. Thanks for the info though.
 




jacob.hanson1010

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98 Ranger 4.0 OHV 5sp 2wd
Just did this job last weekend. This guide was immensely helpful. Made an account just to add a few notes:

I took my 1998 Ranger XLT 4.0 OHV 5spd with 90k miles down to the local muffler shop and had them break loose the 7 Y pipe bolts for $66. Luckily so, as the guy at the shop snapped one of the 3 lower bolts (replaced it) and added anti seize to the rest of them. He did not, however, add anti seize to the upper four manifold bolts. So I spent *four* hours on my back slowly loosening and tightening them, since I was so afraid to break them, to eventually work them out. Eventually got those rusty bolts out and wire-wheeled them down. After applying some anti seize, they went back in so much easier. People often have issues with exhaust leaks at the Y pipe manifold when they reassemble, but I just wiped my mating surfaces with a towel and they were smooth enough to seal on the first try.

Like you, I had the same fears of my 10mm adapter bolt being stuck. I hammered the bit in with seemingly less than 1/2" of engagement. It took my big boy breaker bar (that I was using on the Y pipe bolts) to "free" the adapter bolt. It came loose with a loud "CRACK!" My middle black o-ring also crumbled to the touch. I scoffed at the only 40 ft/lbs that I had to put back on it, since I spent the whole day absolutely *muscling* every other bolt I had touched. Reverse process was simple enough.

You're a god among men.
 




fast_dave

Well-Known Member
Joined
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City, State
East Bay - Nor Cal / PRK
Year, Model & Trim Level
'98 Spt 4.0 OHV 5 spd 4x4
Just did this job last weekend. This guide was immensely helpful. Made an account just to add a few notes:

I took my 1998 Ranger XLT 4.0 OHV 5spd with 90k miles down to the local muffler shop and had them break loose the 7 Y pipe bolts for $66. Luckily so, as the guy at the shop snapped one of the 3 lower bolts (replaced it) and added anti seize to the rest of them. He did not, however, add anti seize to the upper four manifold bolts. So I spent *four* hours on my back slowly loosening and tightening them, since I was so afraid to break them, to eventually work them out. Eventually got those rusty bolts out and wire-wheeled them down. After applying some anti seize, they went back in so much easier. People often have issues with exhaust leaks at the Y pipe manifold when they reassemble, but I just wiped my mating surfaces with a towel and they were smooth enough to seal on the first try.

Like you, I had the same fears of my 10mm adapter bolt being stuck. I hammered the bit in with seemingly less than 1/2" of engagement. It took my big boy breaker bar (that I was using on the Y pipe bolts) to "free" the adapter bolt. It came loose with a loud "CRACK!" My middle black o-ring also crumbled to the touch. I scoffed at the only 40 ft/lbs that I had to put back on it, since I spent the whole day absolutely *muscling* every other bolt I had touched. Reverse process was simple enough.

You're a god among men.


@jacob.hanson1010

Thanks for your kind words - it makes my day to hear that my experience and documentation helped another brother out! :chug:

Yep - the scariest part of the job is the fear of breaking the 10mm adapter bolt that goes into the engine block.

Nice to read that you followed my suggestions right down to "hammering" in the 10mm hex socket into the bolt.

Great that you added the note/fact that the depth of the 10mm hole that the socket is settling in is maybe - at most - 1/2" deep.

And as you experienced:

* The Adapter Bolt comes off with a "CRACK" which will make your heart stop and your brain default to "oh sheet".

* Your center (black) gasket was also cooked like - same as mine was.

In closing, I'll add that after I got everything all buttoned up, in addition to the leak being fixed, my in dash factory oil gauge arm "lifted/rose" about 1/16" - 1/8" - so some oil pressure is also restored with this repair.

Welcome to the fourm, and don't be a stranger!

Despite the fact that we have a RANGER section, don't worry about posting your questions here - we're cool with it :cool:
 




jacob.hanson1010

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98 Ranger 4.0 OHV 5sp 2wd
Thanks for the warm welcome, this post is my first visit and certainly won't be the last if I keep this truck. Pretty lucky that we have forums that span both the Ranger/Explorer models. No shortage of information.

One question: I always thought the Oil Pressure Gauge was a "dummy light" in that it doesn't actually report pressure... You either have pressure or you don't?
 




donalds

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1999 ford explorer sohc
Thanks for the warm welcome, this post is my first visit and certainly won't be the last if I keep this truck. Pretty lucky that we have forums that span both the Ranger/Explorer models. No shortage of information.

One question: I always thought the Oil Pressure Gauge was a "dummy light" in that it doesn't actually report pressure... You either have pressure or you don't?
More like you have over 7psi or you don't lol
 




fast_dave

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City, State
East Bay - Nor Cal / PRK
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'98 Spt 4.0 OHV 5 spd 4x4
Thanks for the warm welcome, this post is my first visit and certainly won't be the last if I keep this truck. Pretty lucky that we have forums that span both the Ranger/Explorer models. No shortage of information.

One question: I always thought the Oil Pressure Gauge was a "dummy light" in that it doesn't actually report pressure... You either have pressure or you don't?


On the 2nd Gen '98 Explorer, we get a Gauge that is an actual gauge - FWIW.

Here's a pic I lifted off the 'net

Ex_Oil_Gauge_2.jpg
 




fast_dave

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City, State
East Bay - Nor Cal / PRK
Year, Model & Trim Level
'98 Spt 4.0 OHV 5 spd 4x4
Thanks for the warm welcome, this post is my first visit and certainly won't be the last if I keep this truck. Pretty lucky that we have forums that span both the Ranger/Explorer models. No shortage of information.

One question: I always thought the Oil Pressure Gauge was a "dummy light" in that it doesn't actually report pressure... You either have pressure or you don't?

Maintain it and it will treat you well.

It won't be the fastest or flashiest, but it will keep going and going and going - allowing you to save money for girls, beer & ammo.

My Ex is at 217,000 Miles
 




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