How to Replace a Ford Ranger Oil Pan Gasketby Jeffrey Caldwell
The oil pan on a Ford Ranger pickup is mounted on the bottom of the engine block; it collects motor oil after the oil circulates through the engine. If you regularly notice a black puddle underneath your engine, it is a good sign that you have an oil pan leak. Engine oil leaks are not only environmentally hazardous--low oil levels can cause serous engine damage.
Draining the Oil Pan
Disconnect the ground cable from the negative battery terminal, by loosening the retaining bolt with a wrench. Pull the clamp off the terminal.
Pull the oil dipstick from the dipstick tube with your hand.
Place a waste oil collection pan underneath the connection between the transmission oil cooler lines and the radiator. Unscrew the transmission oil cooler line fittings from the radiator, using a line wrench.
Raise the vehicle safely using an automotive jack. Support it with jack stands placed underneath the frame.
Place a waste oil collection pan underneath the drain bolt on the bottom of the oil pan. Unscrew the drain bolt using a socket, and allow the oil to drain from the engine.
Removing the Oil Pan
Label and disconnect the wires connected to the starter solenoid, using masking tape and a marker.
Unscrew the bolts that secure the starter motor to the engine block, using a socket. Remove the starter motor from the vehicle.
Unscrew the nuts and bolts that secure the head pipe to the exhaust manifold, using a socket and wrench. Slide the head pipe out of the way.
Unscrew the bolts that secure the transmission oil cooler lines to the engine block, using a socket. Slide the lines out of the way.
Unscrew the bolts that secure the oil pan to the engine block. Lower the oil pan away from the engine block and remove it from the vehicle.
Clean the oil pan, using an automotive solvent and allow to air dry. Be sure to remove all the old gasket material from the gasket mating surface.
Clean the gasket mating surface on the bottom of the engine block, using a flat razor blade. Be sure to remove all the old gasket material.
Installing the Oil Pan
Place a light dab of RTV silicone sealant every two to three inches along the gasket mating surface on the oil pan.
Lay the replacement gasket into position on the oil pan.
Raise the oil pan into position underneath the engine block, using your hand.
Screw in the bolts that secure the oil pan to the engine block, using a socket.
Screw in the bolts that secure the transmission oil cooler lines to the engine block, using a socket.
Slide the head pipe into position at the rear of the exhaust manifold. Screw in the bolts that secure the head pipe to the exhaust manifold using a socket.
Installing the Starter Motor
Raise the starter motor into position against the engine block. Screw in the bolts that secure it, using a socket.
Reconnect the wiring harness to the starter motor, using the labels you made during disassembly.
Screw the oil pan drain bolt into the bottom of the oil pan, using a socket.
Screw the transmission oil cooler line fittings into the radiator, using a line wrench.
Slide the oil dipstick into the dipstick tube, using your hand.
Testing and Inspecting for Leaks
Lower the vehicle.
Reconnect the ground cable to the negative battery terminal. Slide the clamp over the terminal and tighten the retaining bolt, using a wrench.
Fill the engine with oil according to the specifications listed in the Ranger's owner’s manual.
Run the engine and and check the transmission oil level, using the procedure outlined in the owner’s manual.
- "Ford: Ranger/Explorer/Mountaineer 1991-99 (Chilton's Total Car Care Repair Manual)"; The Nichols/Chilton Editors; 1999
- "Chilton's Ford Bronco II/Explorer/Ranger 1983-91 Repair Manual"; Chilton Book Company; 1991
- "Ford Ranger Pick-ups: 1993 thru 2008 (Haynes Repair Manual)"; Max Haynes; 2009
- Most auto parts stores will recycle waste motor oil at no cost.
Things You'll Need
- Wrench set
- Waste oil collection pan
- Line wrench
- Automotive jack
- Jack stands
- Socket set
- Masking tape
- Automotive solvent
- Flat razor blade
- RTV silicone sealant
- Replacement oil pan gasket
- Motor oil
- Ford Ranger owner's manual
- Always follow the instructions listed in the owner's manual when lifting and lowering a vehicle. Failure to do so could cause injury or death.
- Prolonged contact with used engine oil can cause serious skin disorders, including cancer. Wear protective gloves when handling used oil.
Jeffrey Caldwell has been a freelance writer for over five months and has published over 250 articles on websites like eHow and Trails.com. Caldwell writes articles on a wide range of topics including travel, camping and automotive mechanics. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English from Millersville University.