Thinking about purchasing a new car? Use our new Car Loan Calculator to estimate your monthly car payment!

How to Replace a 2002 Ford Explorer Fuel Tank

by Mary Ellen Popolo

Wear, damage or punctures are a few of the reasons that would warrant changing the fuel tank in your 2002 Ford Explorer. Extreme caution must be used when replacing a fuel tank. Even after the fuel tank has been drained, highly flammable gases are present. It is especially important not to smoke, work near an open flame or any item that could spark while changing the fuel tank.

Fuel Tank Removal

Disconnect the negative battery cable with an 8 mm wrench. Unscrew the gas cap.

Remove the fuel filter located on the passenger's side frame rail. Use a screwdriver to loosen the worm clamp and remove the two retaining clips. Discard the fuel filter.

Raise the vehicle with a car jack and support it on jack stands.

Disconnect the fuel filler hose from the fuel filler intermediate tube with the screwdriver.

Drain the fuel tank by siphoning the fuel through the fuel tank's lower filler hose into the fuel storage tanker.

Loosen and remove the nuts and remove the fuel tank's skid plate with a wrench or socket.

Position the jack under the fuel tank. Support the fuel tank with the jack.

Disconnect the fuel filler hose and tubes with the screwdriver.

Remove the rear fuel tank strap bolt followed by the front fuel tank strap nut with a wrench or socket.

Lower the jack supporting the fuel tank just enough to expose the fuel lines. Disconnect the fuel lines with a wrench and unplug the electrical connector

Unplug the fuel tank's electrical supply connector near the frame rail.

Lower the jack and remove the fuel tank. Use caution, when lowering the fuel tank, as there will still be some fuel remaining in it.

Fuel Tank Installation

Install the new fuel tank into position. Use the wrench or socket to reattach the fuel line. Plug in the electrical connector.

Raise the fuel tank with the jack. Reattach and tighten the front fuel tank strap nut and the rear fuel tank strap bolt with the wrench or socket.

Reattach the tubes and the fuel filler hose and tighten the hose clamp with the screwdriver.

Reinstall the fuel skid plate. Reattach and tighten the nuts with the wrench or socket.

Install the new fuel filter. Tighten the worm clamp and install new retaining clips supplied with the fuel filter.

Remove the jack stands and lower the vehicle with the jack.

Reconnect the negative battery cable with the 8 mm wrench.

Refill the vehicle with fuel and reinstall the gas cap.

Start the vehicle and check for any leaks.


  • Even though the fuel was siphoned from the tank, some may still remain. Use extreme caution when lowering and removing the fuel tank.

Items you will need

About the Author

Mary Ellen Popolo began writing freelance articles online in 1998. She has published numerous how-to articles specializing in home and family and many other topics.

More Articles

Photo Credits