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Old 01-21-2019, 11:58 AM   #1
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Ford 5.8 Spark Plugs - any new techniques to replace?

Hi, 5.8L engine - trying to replace spark plugs. I have replaced all of them except numbers 1 and 2. I understand that these vans require either pulling the alternator or removing a wheel well (?) in order to access all the plugs.

With the advent of difficult angle boot pullers and devices like the Tite-Reach, are there any better ways to do this ie, without the surgery? I did all the sparkplugs so far from inside the cab and using a universal joint on the ratchet.

The hardest part for me is pulling the boots! I think I could use my 3/8 Tite reach if I could get to those boots. I bought a 90 degree puller but they make the actual tongs on the thing so long that it defeats the purpose.

Thanks!


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Old 01-21-2019, 12:14 PM   #2
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I've never done either when replacing them (I did them a few times on my 5.8L). Just turn the wheels full lock to the right, should gain you the clearance you need.
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Old 01-22-2019, 09:19 AM   #3
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Thank you. I did the 2 spark plug last night; took a bit of time but with a universal joint adapter and extension - got it through the hole in the wheel well. There were posts on undoing a bolt bracket for the air injection hoses and undoing that did add space but barely enough. I will try number 1 tonight. I got the boot off and the plug out but couldn't get the new plug in. Those two plugs were rusted - I think more than the others I pulled out. I translate that into the prior attempt was probably given up too. Number 1 had a break in the ceramic! All the other plugs were fine.
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Old 01-22-2019, 09:23 AM   #4
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If the rust was really bad, it might help to hit the threads and seat with some red scotchbrite. Then clean the dust off with a rag and some WD 40.
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Old 01-22-2019, 05:23 PM   #5
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OK thanks for the suggestions. Unfortunately my new toys had far less utility than hoped. The boot puller only worked on 1 plug - was hoping for 2 and would equally not work on the other half of the engine. The Titereach didn't work because the last place it would work was blocked by hard pipes.

So that last one I managed to get the boot off, got it out via under the wheel well with 3 harbor freight wobble extensions (3/8) and a 3/8 universal joint. Then got it back on taking several attempts. My Popeye forearms are too big to get into that little area enough. When I finally got the threads to take, it was literally turning it 3 degrees at a time. Then I realized I could use a wrench on the spark plug adapter. 3/4 inch and about 50 turns at the angles available - DONE. Dielectric and boot back on - runs great.

Thanks for the help. Now for my motorhome with Chevy 454. That ought to be a laugh riot. It would be worth paying someone if I knew they'd do it right!
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Old 01-23-2019, 05:55 AM   #6
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If you had trouble with boots and rusty plugs then beware that exhaust manifolds and especially studs are likely next. They rust to bits on the early Econoline motors. I dealt with the plugs and manifold leaks/broken studs on a 460 e350 motorhome and had to call in the professionals. It wasn't cheap or easy and they said they'd never do it again. Years after that I did the plugs on my 460 SMB but luckily no manifold problems with that one. Still though, the studs were rusting to bits and I was happy I never developed a leak.

Any plug change on an Econoline engine will challenge your socket collection.

Is your motorhome a class A or C? I can't imagine a 454 class C being any easier, pretty much the same as a 460 with a different badge.

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Old 01-23-2019, 09:21 AM   #7
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It's a class C. The front seats need to be removed in order to even get out the doghouse so it's tight.
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Old 01-23-2019, 09:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 86Scotty View Post
If you had trouble with boots and rusty plugs then beware that exhaust manifolds and especially studs are likely next. They rust to bits on the early Econoline motors. I dealt with the plugs and manifold leaks/broken studs on a 460 e350 motorhome and had to call in the professionals. It wasn't cheap or easy and they said they'd never do it again. :
My 2001 5.4 had several missing manifold studs, and I figured I would never be able to get them out, so I took it to a local muffler shop that said they had done lots of them. It only took the guy about 4 hours for the whole job. He welded a little bolt to each busted stud, and the combination of the heat from welding and having something to grab onto made removal easy. How he got in there to weld is beyond me, but he said it wasn't hard. All the studs were replaced with what I was told were updated Ford studs. Three years later, there pretty rusted, but don't look to be falling apart yet.
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Old 01-27-2019, 11:02 AM   #9
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I always thought a Hole in the side of the Van like the newer cars have that spare tire hole in the back of the vehicle to lower and raise the tire would be a worth wild option for replacing those tricky spark plugs hahaha. Not feasible but would help maybe
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