How to Change the Oil Pan on a 1998 Ford Escort ZX2 2.0

by Alibaster Smith

The oil pan on your 1998 Ford Escort ZX2 2.0L acts as a reservoir for the oil in your Escort's engine. The engine oil lubricates the engine components and prevents them from seizing due to the high temperatures generated from normal engine operation. When the oil pan gasket has failed, oil will leak around the gasket. If you've bottomed out while driving and the oil pan itself is dented, the entire pan will need to be replaced, along with the gasket.

Step 1

Jack up the front of the vehicle using a floor jack under the front jack point.

Step 2

Place jack stands under the front pinch welds of the vehicle and lower the vehicle onto the stands.

Step 3

Climb under the vehicle, place the catch pan under the oil pan drain bolt and unbolt the drain bolt to allow any remaining oil in the oil pan to drain out into the pan.

Step 4

Unbolt the Escort's oil pan retaining bolts with a socket wrench. The bolts are positioned around the perimeter of the pan.

Step 5

Lower the pan down. You will expose the crankshaft. Check for any damage to the crankshaft. If there is damage, you'll need to have the vehicle serviced by a professional mechanic. If not, you can proceed to install the new oil pan.

Step 6

Wipe off any excess oil from the bottom of the engine block and apply gasket sealer to it as well as the top of the new oil pan.

Step 7

Press the oil pan gasket onto the top of the oil pan and press the oil pan up to the engine block.

Step 8

Thread and tighten the oil pan retaining bolts. Use a criss-cross tightening pattern to avoid over-tightening one side of the pan and deforming the gasket. Tighten the bolts to 15 lbs-ft. with a torque wrench. The rest of the installation is the reverse of removal.

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