I have a Ford F150 1997 4.6 (I think) engine. I bought a starter to replace the one that is failing. In 4 hours I have been able to remove only two of the three bolts holding it on. The top one is the problem, it simply cannot be reached. I even removed the right front tire hoping that would help the access but even with socket extensions combined, there is no room to ratchet even when i do get the socket over the head. It does appear I might get more room if I remove the manifold from the block but is all that necessary to get at it, or is there something else to be removed?
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The engineers did a good job of designing the starter mounting eh?
I've replaced quite a few of these starters and I just use a few different extensions and deep and shallow sockets until I find what reaches. You have to go in from just in front of the starter. I usually put the socket and extension on the bolt and then put the ratchet into the extension.
It's not a fun job but it can be done without removing anything else.
I appreciate the tip. I have tried various extensions but to no avail. Since I cannot even get an socket over the bolt, I am not certain if it is a 11mm, 12mm or 13mm. I even went to our local library this evening hoping that somewhere in the volume of truck repair manuals it might at least give me what socket to use but ran into a dead end there as well. I have big hands and cannot get my hand far enough in to the opening to make the connection so will most likely try removing the manifold to give me some space. Thanks again.
It's a 13mm.
Taking the manifold off a 4.6 isn't real easy either so I'd just fight with it without removing the manifold.
If you do decide to remove the manifold though the easiest way by far is to remove the inner fender liner and go in from there.
I just took one off yesterday. As was said I grabbed a handfull of extensions & a deep & shallow 13 mm socket. I got the right combo & actually had plenty of room to work the ratchet to get the bolt out. I had to have the ratchet on the bottom side of the frame,wouldn't work on the topside.
Thanks for the help. I finally got it out by taking the passenger front wheel off and used a combination of extensions and surprise (a 10mm) socket, angle connection attachment and brace handle to do the job. Apparently at one time or another someone substituted a 10mm for the 13mm soOnce the top one was gone, everything went smooth. You and all those who responded was most appreciated.