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This may seem like a pretty stupid question, but I was going to do an oil change on my 1994 4.4 Bird today (I've not had the car that long). I took one look at the filter burried under the RH side of the engine and decided to leave it.

How on earth are you supposed to get your hand up in there to get the thing off??

It looks to me like it would be easier from underneath, and as I don't have a very good jack at the moment I thought I'd maybe take it to a shop so they can do it on the lift.

What the best way to do it if you're doing it yourself??
What intervals do people change theirs at? I had an old Ford Cortina (UK car)once that had had the oil changed every 3000m since new, and it lasted till over 120,000 on the original engine and didn't smoke or anything.

What intervals do people change their tranny fluid and spark plugs also as a matter of interest.
 

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Well it is a PITA but can be done! You just have to get the car in the air a bit and "play" with the filter. It will come out. The first time is always the hardest, but you will get better. Just make sure when putting the new filter in not to put any kinks or dents in it. Also it can get messy, so be sure to put something under it to catch all the oil that spills and splashes.

The easist method I found was to lift up the motor on the oil pan lip a bit with a peice of wood and a jack to get some more room. After jacking up the motor a tiny bit the filter just falls out! Amazing how Ford couldn't do a better job of locating the filter...

i always had access to a lift, made things much easier.

;)
 

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Andy625UK said:
This may seem like a pretty stupid question, but I was going to do an oil change on my 1994 4.4 Bird today (I've not had the car that long). I took one look at the filter burried under the RH side of the engine and decided to leave it.

How on earth are you supposed to get your hand up in there to get the thing off??

It looks to me like it would be easier from underneath, and as I don't have a very good jack at the moment I thought I'd maybe take it to a shop so they can do it on the lift.

What the best way to do it if you're doing it yourself??
What intervals do people change theirs at? I had an old Ford Cortina (UK car)once that had had the oil changed every 3000m since new, and it lasted till over 120,000 on the original engine and didn't smoke or anything.

What intervals do people change their tranny fluid and spark plugs also as a matter of interest.
Well to be honest to do an oil change you have to lift your car so if you werent going to raise it how were you going to drain the oil??? Just get some ramps preferebly the rino ones you can get at autozone. Do not use fram oil filters. They are crap. I usually use the Motorcraft ones other people will chime in with there suggestions here too. I usually change mine every 3k. If you take care of the engine with regular maintance theyll last well over 200k miles. 120k miles there just breaking in :) good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #5
MattsLE97 said:
Well to be honest to do an oil change you have to lift your car so if you werent going to raise it how were you going to drain the oil??? Just get some ramps preferebly the rino ones you can get at autozone. Do not use fram oil filters. They are crap. I usually use the Motorcraft ones other people will chime in with there suggestions here too. I usually change mine every 3k. If you take care of the engine with regular maintance theyll last well over 200k miles. 120k miles there just breaking in :) good luck
Matts, I have done NUMEROUS oil changes on cars that I've owned without having to raise the car. Before I had a look for the filter this morning, I was hoping to be able to do the same with the Bird. No such luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Tony said:
Well it is a PITA but can be done! You just have to get the car in the air a bit and "play" with the filter. It will come out. The first time is always the hardest, but you will get better. Just make sure when putting the new filter in not to put any kinks or dents in it. Also it can get messy, so be sure to put something under it to catch all the oil that spills and splashes.

The easist method I found was to lift up the motor on the oil pan lip a bit with a peice of wood and a jack to get some more room. After jacking up the motor a tiny bit the filter just falls out! Amazing how Ford couldn't do a better job of locating the filter...

i always had access to a lift, made things much easier.

;)
So do you mean that you put the jack under the engine, and lift the engine upwards in relation to the body?

I sorta thought I was gonna get 10W30 running up my arm!
 

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Well if your not willing to raise or put it or anything just take it to a shop. On our cars you have to raise it up specifically for the drain plug. Once you do it once its a sinch to do. Yes your gonna get some oil on you when you do it but hey your working on your car what do you expect :) Theres alot of threads on this subject. Next time try to search

-Matt-
 

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Andy625UK said:
So do you mean that you put the jack under the engine, and lift the engine upwards in relation to the body?

I sorta thought I was gonna get 10W30 running up my arm!
Well for example:

You jack up the front end of the car and put some jack stands in there. Or drive on some ramps. Either way, you want to get the Bird in the air. I couldn't even imagine doing this on the ground, especially with mine being lowered...LOL!

Then use the jack and with a peice of wood to jack up the motor SLIGHTLY on the lip of the oil pan. The little bit of extra room will work wonders!

My buddy has a bent K-Member on his 94 Cougar and this was the only method of getting the filter out. Unless of course we wanted to drop the PS pump!!! So that's how I began doing my oil changes. Just falls right out of there and takes and additional 20 sec!
 

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You can do it without raising the car unless you have very short arms or it is lowered a lot. Lay on the ground under the left front of the bumper and get it from the bottom. With practice you can get it out in about 2 minutes.
 

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I change oil religiously at 3000 miles, I use motorcraft synthetic 5-30w oil (might change to 10-40w) along with a motorcraft FL-820s oil filter.

I have never tried lifting the engine also, but I always do oil changes with the front in the air. I am a little guy which helps but I have yet to find an oil filter wrench that works in that little space. So I just do it hand tight, using every bit of my upper body strength with my leg braced on the bumper to crank on it.
 

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Have you tried something like this? This is what we used at my old work.

I have used these to get it to turn enough to get it by hand.

 

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The oil filter location is right up there on the ease of changing factor with the top bolt on the starter. I think the engineers at Ford are sadists. Imagine going from an extremely easy big block Chrysler (slide under the car and it's sticking straight out in front of the engine) to that THING under our T-birds... I've scratched the fool out of my hand more than once. Turning the wheels does make it easier but I've always been a little skittish about doing that on ramps.
 

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Here's what I do. Jack it up, drain the oil pan, and put some aluminum foil under the oil filter on the k-member. Move the drain pan under your aluminum foil catch, and get a filter wrench up in there if it's not hand tight. Then, unscrew it, and lower the front down to drain the oil out on the foil. Next, take the closed end of it (gasket side still facing the engine) and angle it up and pull toward the fender. Rotate it towards the front and pull to the bumper, then rotate it again 90 degrees almost and come down and around the power steering pump. That's the easiest way that I've found.

To all the guys who can do this without lifting the car, you guys are amazing. I can barely get my head and shoulders under the car past the radiator.

Pete
 

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My 2¢:

1. I use a portable hydraulic jack, placing it under the K-member. This raises the car a lot. Use jack stands to support the car after the car is raised.

2. After the first couple of times, you'll "remember the path" which makes removing the filter easier. Others have different ways, of course. What I do: I pack the area with paper towels, unscrew the filter, tip it so the "closed end" is down, then lead it though an area crossed with the power steering hose. After the filter is unscrewed, it takes me about a minute to get it out.
 

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Autozone sells the Motorcraft filters
 

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Al_Florida said:
Autozone sells the Motorcraft filters
Hello......the guy lives in England so NO Autozone for us Euro's :( :(
Only place to buy Motorcraft in Europe is at the dealership for the appropriate price :rolleyes: :rolleyes:
And Andy, FYI the Tbird has the same filter as a Ford Mondeo V6 (FL820S)
Shouldnt be hard to get in the UK.


Ed...
 

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I lay down two large broken down cardboard boxes, lay the ramps and pull the car on em, drain the oil, go inside and get something to drink. Come back out and curse the filter and the engineer, take off my belt, pull out the pin thingy on the buckle, loop the belt through the buckle loop and loosen the filter, place the pan under the vicinity of the filter, thread it out and cram an old shirt under the filter area. Stick a finger in the hole of the filter and shimmy it past the PS hose. Weasel the new one in and thread it with a peice of sandpaper on my hand, spray the area with brakekleen, and pour in the oil and start the car.
 

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I don't care for the filter location either. But that's my only gripe with the car. All the other problems are things I just havent figured out yet.

I use those funny plier things.

It's not as much of a PITA as the 95 Dodge Intrepid. That was a nightmare to deal with on oil filter.
 

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I just reach under my front bumper to change the filter. Thats the main reason I spent the money on a relocation kit was the idiotic place that the sadistic engineers at Ford put that filter. Now its a snap.

As I recall though, the first time I changed he filter on the car I had to loosen clamp on the power steering fluid line, and turn it 90-180 degrees so that the screw part was out of the way. That made it a little easier to get the filter past the Power steering pump.
 
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