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It rained a bit today and I have some water on the inside trunk over, it looks like it coming from the long black rail on the right side that on the roof. I would think that I have to remove the headliner to access its mounting, would that be correct? If so I need to either remove it to check all the seals or gasket and replace them if possible.
 

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It rained a bit today and I have some water on the inside trunk over, it looks like it coming from the long black rail on the right side that on the roof. I would think that I have to remove the headliner to access its mounting, would that be correct? If so I need to either remove it to check all the seals or gasket and replace them if possible.
There are some posts in here where they discovered it was coming in from the side marker lights; they seal dries up and lets water in. However, if it's not wet on the SIDE of your rear [carpet?], then it probably isn't.

LarryR
 

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But unless you check the dampness of the carpet very soon after water gets in, the water will just have wicked its way around through the carpet fabric.
 

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The water is coming in from the top right corner about a foot or so from the rear hatch of the headliner....I am pretty sure it from the side rail, since I have used shoe goo to seal off all the middle rails.
 

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Hey guys, on the note of bearings, the bearings with "plastic" side pieces are usally called sealed. Most will have a lower max rpm they can run at because of heat being generated from the plastc. There are however special bearings where the shields don't have as much friction and can run musch faster. Also when a bearing starts to make a noise it is already wornout. This I have learned from being in the electric motor field since my late teenage years. If you can replace bearings and want a "high speed" sealed bearing NTN has a great product, but make sure you speak to someone who knows what suffix is the high speed versions.
On the note of a suffix, rs is not the only one used for "rubber sealed", it depends on the brand, I have seen LL and V used among others. An industrial suppy company should be able to get what you need at not alot of cost unless it were a rather large bearing. On the two idler pullys on my kl I used 6203 size bearings and iirc LLB was NTN's nomenclature for low contact sealed, LLU however is standard sealed.
 

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Hey guys, on the note of bearings, the bearings with "plastic" side pieces are usally called sealed. Most will have a lower max rpm they can run at because of heat being generated from the plastc. There are however special bearings where the shields don't have as much friction and can run musch faster. Also when a bearing starts to make a noise it is already wornout. This I have learned from being in the electric motor field since my late teenage years. If you can replace bearings and want a "high speed" sealed bearing NTN has a great product, but make sure you speak to someone who knows what suffix is the high speed versions.
Sealed is as the name implies: pre-greased and sealed, typically with a Buna N seal. There are, however single-sided sealed bearings, which may or may not come pre-greased. Double sealed are typically used where an oil bath is not feasible, so the bearing must maintain its own lubrication. Naming convention is typically:
1 seal: "RS" suffix
2 seal: "2RS" suffix

Shielded bearings are not sealed, although they may come pre-greased. Shielded bearings come with a metal shield that protects bearings from ingress of large foreign objects, but they do have a small clearance gap through which dirt can come in. Naming convention is typically:
1 shield: "Z" suffix
2 shield: "ZZ" suffix

I've had electric motors where they used shielded instead of sealed (typically a bit cheaper than sealed, the bean counters won). I ended up having to press on a sealed bearing once the shielded wore out from lack of lubrication. I typically use shielded when they are positioned in a transmission where they will get sufficient lubrication flow.
 

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Thanks for the source info. I was glad to see the push-pin pliers on the lower part of the amazon page, I should probably have a set of them.
 

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Thanks for the source info. I was glad to see the push-pin pliers on the lower part of the amazon page, I should probably have a set of them.
I dropped a triple framed photo of my mom [deceased Nov 2010] and me and me behind my shelves that are loaded with books and TV and audio equipment.................. I'm gonna stop at Harbor Freight to see if I can find some LOOONG pinchers like ya'll been talking about; gotta open approx. 1/2 inch to grab it. It DID stay on it's edge; had no choice.

I'd take me over an hour to move all that stuff.... Oh, I'm not "off topic", I think I saw one, and it was called something like "remote tool grabber", ha. I'll let you know.

LarryR
 

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Ok so I thought I would let you know, that after 2 weeks of running the 98 wagon that I installed and new crankshaft and clutch I decided to get gas. I had 1/2 of the last quarter of a tank and I was 360 miles on the trip meter. So guessed that I am getting 36 to 38 mpg...that is awesome. This weekend if it doesn't rain or Its too cold, I know I'm in Southern Cal but it gets california cold down in the high 40's low 50's I will be working on my head liner.
 

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this weekend, just remove front wheels, brakes and rotors to clean the pins the rotor slides on, brakes in good shape but thought it was time for this maintenance, I don't want the pads to wear unevenly.
 

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Congrats. You did what most owners would not consider normal maintenance, though I do. In a similar matter, I replace the brake hoses on one of the Escorts as soon as I see any sign of the outer layer deteriorating, or when the cars passes 20 years old.
The headliners seem to go bad between the 16th and the 20th year too. Im still looking for a patch of fabric large enough for the headliner, that has a blue sky with puffy white clouds. And in a colorfast fabric if possible.
 

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Too Extreme! lol. I own a Saturn with a sunroof, so I already have a problem with rain leaking in, even with the sunrooof closed forever and a bead of sealant run around the joint.
 

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I just got dicked for $300 to replace my alternator. I didn't realize alternators for our cars were so expensive. I'm used to buying GM alternators for $40 a pop! I will say that the alternator is a new one and not rebuilt but, DAMN, $210 for an alternator?

John
 

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Im afraid thats probably a typical cost, when the repair facility provides the part -- and few repair shops will agree to install a part they dont provide. A rebuilt alternator for one of my 2nd gen Escorts costs about $110 to $140, but you have to install it yourself, and probably take the pulley from the old one and install on the new one.
 

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Im afraid thats probably a typical cost, when the repair facility provides the part -- and few repair shops will agree to install a part they dont provide. A rebuilt alternator for one of my 2nd gen Escorts costs about $110 to $140, but you have to install it yourself, and probably take the pulley from the old one and install on the new one.
Unfortunately it gave out when I was far away from home so I had no access to tools. The repair was pretty straightforward but the cost of gathering everything I would need to do the repair would have been around the same price so I just went ahead and had them do it.

My drivers side CV boot is starting to leak. Should I be concerned with the axle assembly even though there is no noise coming from it or should I just replace the boot itself?

John
 

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I think its not very easy to replace boots on an Escort CV axle. Unlike some other front wheel drive cars, you cant get the outer CV joint apart to install a new boot on it, and have to do it by first dismantling the axle starting from the inner CV joint, then replacing the outer boot, and reassembling the axle with a new inner boot too. And this is after you get the axle off of the car. So now I just buy a new or rebuilt CV axle in the first place. If your axle isnt making clicking noises on turns yet, then you may have thousands of miles before it finally fails. However I believe they sometimes fail without making a lot of racket.
I have seen CV boots that had a seam in them and would open up to go over the CV joint, then you screwed the seam shut with small bolts/nuts. I dont know if these are still made for Escorts. This kind of a boot wont pass the safety inspection in Virginia - in the rare case of an inspector who bothers to look under there: Many of them do not. They dont seem to care in Texas either. I figure those 'seamed' boots are better than one that is ripped open, but I dont think of them as a long term repair.

If/When you decide to take the driver's side CV axle off the car, you need to know its harder to get out than the one for the passenger side. You can get a pry bar right on the joint to pry out the passenger side axle, but due to the webbing of the transaxle case, there isnt any convenient place to put a pry bar for the driver's side axle. My neighbor was a mechanic by profession, and has been trying to get the CV axle out of his sisters 96 Escort for a couple of days. The usual type of CV joint removing tool (used with a slide hammer) to yank the thing out of the transmission wont fit into the space on the Escort automatic transmissions. (The manual transmissions have a little more space for the tool). There are special CV removal tools sort of shaped like a curved 'hand' formed into a claw that might fit into the space - but I havent caught up with a "tools" truck to ask about one.
My method of getting that driver's side axle out is; to remove the front-to-rear crossmember that runs under the bell housing, so I can get my long prybar (the longest Home Depot screwdriver) up from behind the transmission at a 45 degree angle, to pry the CV axle out. I still have to smack it with a hammer to pop the axle out. When the crossmember is in place on the car, it is in the way of doing this.
But this involves having the front of the car raised on sturdy supports, the wheel off, the hub nut removed and the axle pushed back out of the steering knuckle, a jack to support the bellhousing when the crossmember is dropped out --- and getting the crossmember off; which can be tough, due to the invisible captive nuts for the front two bolts of the crossmember often being quite rusted. I have removed that driver's side CV axle on 6 Escorts I fixed up, and just did it again a 2nd time for my 5-speed Escort, as part of replacing the clutch. Im just a hobbyist, and in spite of having done it 7 times now, its still not an easy task for me.
 

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I think its not very easy to replace boots on an Escort CV axle. Unlike some other front wheel drive cars, you cant get the outer CV joint apart to install a new boot on it, and have to do it by first dismantling the axle starting from the inner CV joint, then replacing the outer boot, and reassembling the axle with a new inner boot too. And this is after you get the axle off of the car. So now I just buy a new or rebuilt CV axle in the first place. If your axle isnt making clicking noises on turns yet, then you may have thousands of miles before it finally fails. However I believe they sometimes fail without making a lot of racket.
I have seen CV boots that had a seam in them and would open up to go over the CV joint, then you screwed the seam shut with small bolts/nuts. I dont know if these are still made for Escorts. This kind of a boot wont pass the safety inspection in Virginia - in the rare case of an inspector who bothers to look under there: Many of them do not. They dont seem to care in Texas either. I figure those 'seamed' boots are better than one that is ripped open, but I dont think of them as a long term repair.

If/When you decide to take the driver's side CV axle off the car, you need to know its harder to get out than the one for the passenger side. You can get a pry bar right on the joint to pry out the passenger side axle, but due to the webbing of the transaxle case, there isnt any convenient place to put a pry bar for the driver's side axle. My neighbor was a mechanic by profession, and has been trying to get the CV axle out of his sisters 96 Escort for a couple of days. The usual type of CV joint removing tool (used with a slide hammer) to yank the thing out of the transmission wont fit into the space on the Escort automatic transmissions. (The manual transmissions have a little more space for the tool). There are special CV removal tools sort of shaped like a curved 'hand' formed into a claw that might fit into the space - but I havent caught up with a "tools" truck to ask about one.
My method of getting that driver's side axle out is; to remove the front-to-rear crossmember that runs under the bell housing, so I can get my long prybar (the longest Home Depot screwdriver) up from behind the transmission at a 45 degree angle, to pry the CV axle out. I still have to smack it with a hammer to pop the axle out. When the crossmember is in place on the car, it is in the way of doing this.
But this involves having the front of the car raised on sturdy supports, the wheel off, the hub nut removed and the axle pushed back out of the steering knuckle, a jack to support the bellhousing when the crossmember is dropped out --- and getting the crossmember off; which can be tough, due to the invisible captive nuts for the front two bolts of the crossmember often being quite rusted. I have removed that driver's side CV axle on 6 Escorts I fixed up, and just did it again a 2nd time for my 5-speed Escort, as part of replacing the clutch. Im just a hobbyist, and in spite of having done it 7 times now, its still not an easy task for me.
Not sure if it was your post but I saw someone describe the process on here and it looked like, while not to difficult, it is a knucklebuster type project. I'm OK with those types of projects but my mechanic friend just told me he would replace the entire axle assembly for $110. I priced out what the axle assembly costs and it looks like they're around $50 so $110 is a pretty good deal if I don't have to go through the knucklebusting/swearing/throwing tools across the garage process! LOL!

I'll probably wait until the joint goes bad before I tear it apart. I was planning on installing some lowering springs and new struts so I figure while it's apart I can have my friend install the new struts and springs.

I have a '98 SE Wagon with a 3(?) speed auto. Would it be worth it to swap out the auto trans I have now for a 5 speed auto or am I mistaken and the wagon already has a 5 speed auto? I also plan on doing an engine swap. Maybe a GTR motor if I can find one reasonably priced?

John
 
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