Oil filter change question | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)

Oil filter change question

Discussion in 'ZX2 1998-2004 2.0L DOHC' started by alordofchaos, Jan 14, 2008.

  1. alordofchaos

    alordofchaos Guest

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    Well, I finally found the darn thing. :evil: stoopid ford engineers!

    Under the alternator in the back of the engine, halfway up/down, sticks out at a 90 degree angle.

    I can reach it from above with my left hand, but can't get a very good grip on it. The *ssholes at the dealership that changed it before I got the car have it pretty tight and I can't get a wrench in from above.

    Before I put it on jackstands this spring, I have two questions:

    1) is it any easier to reach from below?

    2) will it drip on anything?

    Not looking forward to being below it while I loosen it...
  2. Visualjazz

    Visualjazz Guest

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    You can get it from below thats what i do. Just remove splash guard on passenger side. And you have good access to it and obviously remove tire first lol.
  3. jolly_green_giant

    jolly_green_giant Guest

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    A set of ramps is your best bet. With my pair of ramps may take me 10 minutes total to change the oil. And that is without removing parts to get to it. Can get a wrench on it from there.
  4. mmahamm

    mmahamm New Member

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    Same here. You can reach it from underneath, from behind, if you're up on ramps. I feel more comfortable under ramps than I do under jackstands.
  5. alordofchaos

    alordofchaos Guest

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    Thanks, guys!
    No trouble with oil dripping on you, or on something important?

    Seems like a poor design... on my minivan, oil filter is in front and pointed straight down. Simple and clean.

    I'll be working on the parking brake this spring, inoperative water temp gauge, and possibly drain/refill trans fluid so I plan on putting it on jackstands - plus, I don't have ramps :D
  6. TexasTracer

    TexasTracer FEOA Member

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    I find it easier to unscrew and remove the filter from above. Yes it's a sucky design but not the worst byfar. Ramps help 10X better than jackstands.
  7. ryanrules

    ryanrules FEOA Member

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    easy to change from the top on the spi, but the zetec has more crap in the way
  8. TexasTracer

    TexasTracer FEOA Member

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    Yeah I bet from what I've tinkered with at the j/y.
  9. Bone_Head311

    Bone_Head311 FEOA Member

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    You think thats a bad design. try an oil change on 2.2 ohv chevy cavalier motors, those suck. Also older nissan or toyota pickup trucks with four bangers have crappy oil filter placement too.
  10. alordofchaos

    alordofchaos Guest

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    I'd go from the top if I could, but like I said, they got it on really tight at the dealership and I can't loosen it by hand or get a wrench in there.

    I have strap wrenches, cap wrenches, and a filter sized pliers from one time when a quick change place put a filter on so tight, it crushed the gasket and there was metal-to-metal contact (fliter to the engine block) on another car - would've taken the car back there but I had already drained the oil. Couldn't get any of them onto the ZX2 filter.

    Curious as to why you say ramps are 10x better help than jackstands. Either way, it's off the ground, right?

    Thanks!
  11. TexasTracer

    TexasTracer FEOA Member

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    It's easier to just lay them down and drive up them than to get the jack out, lift up, go to one side and adjust the jack, then the other.
  12. alordofchaos

    alordofchaos Guest

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    Ahhh, gotcha, thanks!

    I was going to put the car up on jackstands anyway this spring. The car is new to me, has a few things to sort out.

    I figured it was too cold to do at this oil change (laying on a 17 degree cold concrete garage floor - gettin' too old for that) - things you don't have to worry about in Texas!
  13. TexasTracer

    TexasTracer FEOA Member

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    Yeah we've got it pretty easy in the winter here compared to our neighbors to the north.:)
  14. mmahamm

    mmahamm New Member

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    Ahh - a kindred spirit, someone who has a minivan and an escort.

    That van's filter might be simple, but it's not clean! No way to remove it without getting oil all over your hands.

    You can easily remove the zx2's filter without dripping oil on yourself, and it's close enough to the drain plug that you can catch all of the drips in the same pan.
  15. jolly_green_giant

    jolly_green_giant Guest

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    I agree that it could be worse. my 5.4 Triton is easy to see and reach but is a monster to get a wrench on. Might consider the K&N filter. It has a button on the bottom that's made to fit something like a one inch socket wrench. I've never seen anyone change a filter from the top before. I've just always crawled underneath.

    Some oil might drip down on you but hey. call it a manly skin moisturizer. :lol:
  16. Bone_Head311

    Bone_Head311 FEOA Member

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    Or, you could just cause it cancer causing skin moisturizer
  17. alordofchaos

    alordofchaos Guest

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    Actually, it's the 2nd best oil filter to change in my experience :)

    Since it's straight down, if I turn slowly and keep it level, I can get it off with no drips from the filter.

    Easiest was an '80 RX-7, mounted upside down (opening pointed down). Punch a hole in the bottom with a screwdriver, wait for the oil to empty out the filter, and remove.
  18. paul01zx2

    paul01zx2 FEOA Member

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    My 2001 ZX2 has 137K miles on it. I change the oil and filter every 6K miles. Do the math - thats 23 oil changes (since I bought it new 8/01). The last one was just yesterday and the entire oil and filter change took me no more than 25 minutes (with an outside air temp of about 17F here in New England)!

    Ive done every oil change from under the car - thats the best way. I put the car securely on jack stands. I use a large diameter 'drain and hold' type oil drain container. 13mm bolt on the oil pan drain plug. The plug seals with an integral o-ring - do not use teflon tape on the threads! From underneath the oil filter is just a bit of a reach up around the passenger side CV joint. I use a small 'band' type filter wrench to get the filter loosened then slowly unscrew it by hand. Yes, a bit of oil is going to drip down and get on the passenger side lower control arm and the main front cradle but its really minor. Put the new filter up from under (dont forget to clean the filter mounting pad on the block and apply a bit of clean engine oil to the new filter's gasket first). Tighten 3/4 to 1 full turn AFTER the filter gasket 1st makes contact with the engine filter pad. I usually need to use the filter wrench to get it to 3/4 to 1 turn tight. DO NOT EXCEED 1 FULL TURN FROM 1ST CONTACT.

    I exclusevly use Castrol GTX 5W30 oil and Motorcraft FL-2005 filters.

    Good luck
    Paul
  19. GREENBLOOD

    GREENBLOOD Guest

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    Ive always loosened the filter from the top, once you get your hand in there it is easy. Once the filter is off, I rest it upright on the cross member and go underneath and grab it when the dripping has ceased. I use Fram #3600 Xtra Guard filters with the black grippy coating on them so that I dont need a filter wrench. If you dont overtighten them during the install, they come off fine the next time around.
  20. boostedzx2

    boostedzx2 Guest

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    Ramps are not an option if you lower your zx2. Thats why Jackstands all the way! It's whatever is better for you. I find it better from underneath but I did try it from up top this time and it worked well too! So either or it's really what works for you. Don't make your deciding factor on what filter has a grippy coating or place to grab. It's proven Fram K&N and even Mobil1 don't have anti drain back valves which is the type of filter the zx2 needs. Thats why I always use the motorcraft filter and it's cheaper in my area then the rest and the best by far! Part # FL-2005

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