SOHC V6 Camshaft Timing Procedure - Accessory removal? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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SOHC V6 Camshaft Timing Procedure - Accessory removal?


Active Member
March 8, 2011
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City, State
Year, Model & Trim Level
02 XLT 4.0L & 97 XLT 5.0L
Has anyone performed the camshaft timing chain/cassette replacement procedure while the engine is in the vehicle?

I'm doing the procedure on my 2002 SOHC V6 Explorer and I've come down to where I only have the power steering pump and AC condenser still on the front of the engine. I'm doing the front left chain/cassette.

My question is whether or not anyone has done this job and left the steering pump/AC condenser units on the engine? It looks like you can remove the front engine cover to get to the jackshaft and crankshaft without removing the steering pump/AC condenser and bracket. However, I'm wondering if the upper bracket that holds the ignition box, which looks to be an integral part of the entire assemblies bracketry, might interfere with being able to attach the camshaft timing tool to the front of the camshaft.

Clearly removing it would give you a clearer view of what you're doing but I'm wondering if it is required to do the job. Does anyone know?


cassette upper mounting bolt

If your engine is like mine I believe the casting that supports the power steering pump and A/C compressor blocks access to the cassette upper mounting bolt.


You might be able to time the camshaft but I doubt you'll be able to replace the cassette.

Dale, once again you are right on the money! I'd forgotten all about the upper cassette bolt.

For others that own a 2002, the steering pump/AC compressor mounting bracketry is a little different than the photos that are shown but it restricts any access to the upper cassette bolt that goes into the left front head. The bracketry must be removed.

I was able to undo the two AC compressor mounting bolts by leaning over the front of the vehicle and was able to reach the lower back mounting bolt through the left wheel wheel without having to take the wheel off. This allowed me to simply pull the AC compressor, once the three mounting bolts were removed, toward the front of the engine compartment, tie it down and get it away from the front engine cover with plenty of access. The steering pump and bracket simply pulled right off after removing the four mounting bolts.

The whole extraction took less than an hour. Now I have unobstructed access to the front engine cover.

Once again, thanks Dale!