How to Change an Exhaust Manifold on Ford Cars

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

On the Ford car what connects exhaust pipes to the engine is an exhaust manifold. The manifold can be made up of one or two parts depending on the year, but its job is to secure a pipe end over each of the exhaust ports of the Ford car engine. In order to remove this component of the truck's exhaust, you must be able to access both the engine bay and the under carriage of the vehicle. Remove an exhaust manifold on an Ford car to repair a leaky gasket or install a better performing exhaust system which includes a new Ford car exhaust manifold.

Under The Hood:

 How to Change an Exhaust Manifold on a Expedition

Lift the front end of the Ford Expedition high enough off the ground to easily access the undercarriage of the truck lying on the ground. Secure the vehicle's weight using two jack stands to support the truck during the removal of the Expedition exhaust manifold.

Place a portable work light under the vehicle to illuminate the work area under the passenger compartment and up under the engine where the pies meet the motor via the exhaust manifold.

Spray the bolts and fasteners of the exhaust manifold and the catalytic converter flanges.

From inside the engine bay remove the oil dip stick and tube from the engine. When removing screws, fasteners, nuts and bolts, always remember to reassemble the parts exactly as they were removed. Make each fastener with a notice of location for reinstallation at a later time. Use cups as containers for the different fasteners that you will be working with during the removal and installation of a new expedition exhaust manifold.

Disconnect the catalytic converters front and back from the pipes leading to the engine and back to the muffler. Keep track of the bolt locations and have new gaskets available when reconnecting the exhaust parts. From under the vehicle, break loose the manifold bolts that can be reached from underneath. Do not remove them at this time. Only loosen them for removal after all the nuts have been freed from a secure position.

Move to inside the engine compartment and loosen the exhaust manifold nuts that are reached from inside the engine bay. Loosen but do not remove them until all have been loosened.

Remove the retaining bolts from the bottom of the exhaust manifold leaving the top bolts in place. Move to inside of the engine compartment and finish removing all the securing fasteners that remain.

Slide the exhaust manifold from the retaining bolts and maneuver the manifold out from the engine compartment from the top.

Once the manifold is removed, clean the engine deck that holds the manifold of any debris, old gasket, or defects from rust. This surface will receive the new exhaust manifold and should be completely flat and prepared to make an even connection.

Install a new exhaust manifold gasket over the retaining bolts of the engine deck and slide the new exhaust manifold over these guide posts.

Twist the nuts over the bolts but do not tighten completely. The nuts will have to be tightened evenly and at the correct tightness to seal the exhaust system. Working top to bottom or back to front, tighten the nuts evenly. The new gasket will create a tight seal in between the new Expedition exhaust manifold and the engine exhaust ports when done correctly.

Reconnect the Y-pipes of the catalytic converter to the pipe ends extending from under the engine and back to the muffler. Use new exhaust gaskets where necessary to keep the entire exhaust system closed and free from leaks.

Recheck all securing bolts, nuts and fasteners. Reconnect the oil dipstick and tubing into the engine and secure using the tube mounting bracket.

Start the vehicle and check for any leaks.

Items you will need

  • Ford Expedition New exhaust manifold Portable lighting Vehicle lift Jack stands Penetrating oil Wrenches Utility knife Gaskets

 How to Change the Exhaust Manifold on a Ford Powerstroke Diesel

Remove the cables from the negative terminals of both batteries with a socket wrench. This prevents anyone from accidentally starting the engine while you are replacing the exhaust manifold.

Access the right exhaust manifold from the top of the engine compartment. Bend the tabs on the attaching bolts for the right exhaust manifold, and disconnect the inlet pipe of the right muffler from the right exhaust manifold with a socket wrench.

Raise the vehicle and support it on jack stands. Access the left exhaust manifold from underneath the vehicle, and bend the tabs on the attaching bolts for the left exhaust manifold. Disconnect the inlet pipe of the left muffler from the left exhaust manifold with a socket wrench.

Clean the cylinder heads with a shop towel, and apply anti-seize compound to the threads on the new exhaust manifolds. Connect the new left exhaust manifold with a new gasket and locking tabs. Tighten the mounting bolts for the left exhaust manifold to 45 foot-pounds with a torque wrench. Bend the locking tabs over the bolt heads to secure the bolts.

Lower the vehicle and connect the new right exhaust manifold with a new gasket and locking tabs. Tighten the mounting bolts for the right exhaust manifold to 45 foot-pounds with a torque wrench. Bend the locking tabs over the bolt heads to secure the bolts.

Connect the cable to the negative terminal for both batteries with a socket wrench. Start the engine and correct any leaks in the exhaust system.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Shop towel

  • Anti-seize compound

  • Torque wrench

 How to Replace the Exhaust Manifold in a Ford Explorer

Remove the Exhaust Manifold

Remove the front fender splash guard. Locate the bracket bolt for the heater control valve and remove it.

Disconnect the heater hose and vacuum hose. Remove the heater control valve assembly and set it aside.

Take off the exhaust manifold shield and then pull the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) tube from the exhaust manifold.

Loosen and then remove the eight bolts holding the manifold in place. Lift the manifold out.

Install the Exhaust Manifold

Put the new exhaust manifold in place. Tighten the manifold nuts for the SOHC engine in sequence, starting at the front and alternating sides while working to the rear.

Torque to 30 foot pounds. Tighten the nuts for the DOHC to the same torque; there is no tightening sequence.

Reconnect the EGR tube to the manifold. Replace the exhaust manifold shield. Replace the heater control valve. Reconnect vacuum hose and the heater hose.

Set the heater control valve bracket in position and bolt it in place. Replace the front fender splash guard.

Start the engine. Check for exhaust leaks.

 How to Replace the Exhaust Manifold in a Ford F-150

Remove the Exhaust Manifold

Raise the truck. Make sure the support is secure. Take off the front wheel opening molding on vehicles equipped with the 4x4 option. Unbolt and remove the front fender splash guard.

Remove the nut and the brake booster vacuum hose and bracket. Locate the EGR valve tube and remove it.

Loose the nuts and take the exhaust manifold from the engine. Take off the gasket and discard it. Clean the gasket debris from the manifold surfaces and inspect them for damage.

Install the Exhaust Manifold

Set the exhaust manifold gasket in place. Position the manifold over it and install the nuts by hand.

Tighten the manifold nuts in sequence, alternating sides. Torque the nuts in three passes to 18 foot pounds. Install the catalytic converter.

Install the differential pressure feedback EGR system in the 4.6L engine and then install the electrical connector. Hand-tighten both fittings at first, starting at the top, then torque the nuts to 26 to 33 foot pounds.

Install both fittings in the 5.4L engine. Hand-tighten the nuts first, starting at the top. Torque the nuts then to 30 to 44 foot pounds. Reconnect the differential pressure feedback EGR system hoses.

Reconnect the brake booster vacuum hose with the bracket and bolt on both engines. Replace the front fender splash shield. Replace the front wheel opening molding on a 4x4 model.

Lower the vehicle carefully. Start the engine. Check for exhaust leaks.

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.