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Discussion in '2002 - 2005 Ford Thunderbird' started by Jerry Gallamore, Aug 29, 2016.
Can anyhow tell me how to change this and how it fits together before i get there.
Figured it out on my own, go down through the top it's tight and unhook electrical clip. I bought a long skinny rachet with a flexible head from freight harbor and removed sensor with that. My hands were to big to unclip electrical connection and to finish removal of sensor so I had my wife do it. Not bad at all.
Just did the same switch change-out myself. You describe it quite well...not much room. Up and down, in from the top, then under the car. I wrapped some adhesive tape around a deep well socket to provide needed friction to finger tighten the switch, the a full tighten with a wrench. Never thought of the wife tool, hummmm, I don't think mine would have worked...literally!
Did you remove the fluid from the reservoir before removing the sensor?
The one in my '04 Thunderbird has begun to leak slightly. 'Makes a small mess on the garage floor and the car's underbody. 'Wanted to farm this job out to a local Lincoln dealer service department but I quickly concluded that they really did not want to do this job with a quote of $550. That was overwhelmingly for labor because they would dismount the AC compressor to gain access. I declined... 'Ordered the sensor online last night for pickup locally today. 'With input from owners like you who have done this job, maybe I can avoid going down some "blind alleys"...
No, I did not drain the reservoir of fluid. I had a good amount leak from the switch when it failed then when I removed the switch (it looked like the car was bleeding), by unscrewing it from the pump, the remainder of the fluid drained from the reservoir. If ever I needed to do the switch again (hopefully not) I would have a catch pan in place. Less than a quart of fluid drained. I am by no means a mechanic, but I can change a part. To be quoted over $500 to do what I did in my garage leaves me with two assumptions....one, I saved myself $500...two, maybe I should have become a mechanic! Take care and time...unplug the electrical connection then decide how to approach the switch with the right tool. I used a deepwell socket, I can't recall the size. You will determine the size needed after receiving the replacement part. By the way, I purchased my part for $32 at my local Auto Zone parts store. Once the switch started to spin on the threads it was then easy to remove with small progress with fingers. As you will find, the switch seats on an "O" ring. Reinstall opposite as removed. Small finger movements and a final seating with the deepwell socket. You will find yourself approaching the switch from inside the hood and from the bottom laying on the floor. Once done, refill the reservoir, turn the wheel from stop to stop and top off to the fill line. I re-read your post...it is not necessary to remove or relocate the air conditioner compressor to gain the little access you need. From the bottom you will find a couple tubes in the way but you can work around. Good luck. Write me back and let me know how it gos.
Thanks, Steve -
'Same price, before Tx tax, through Advance Auto parts... I "studied" the removal/replacement of the part when I changed the oil last Thursday. 'Was willing to pay for an hour of shop time, plus the part, to avoid rigging up for the job, working in tight confines and the fluid "mess". But not $550... I do most maintenance and light repairs to my vehicles anyway. So - 'will get on with this one! Thanks for sharing your experience. 'Will follow-up with you...
I struggled replacing mine and also ended up getting dizzy and nauseous. I struggled getting one of the hoses off the reservoir. Used a plier to loosen the rubber hose and it released a little vapor pressure which caused me to get dizzy and just dropped me to the floor. Felt dizzy and nauseous for the next hour. Later read the Mercon V MSDS and it said you could get dizzy from the fumes. I waited a few days and finished work on this. I got the part from Rock Auto parts. The first deep well socket I bought was not deep enough and had to purchase another but it was a half inch drive so I also bought an adapter to 3/8". I also had to buy a short stubby rachet. Removed the front tire, disconnected the splash shield so I could get more light in from the bottom. I did what JG did to replace the sensor. Very tight and a pain. I probably took more than 2 hours total to complete.
I too found that I was going to have to buy some tools on a trial-and-error basis for this job. After making this discovery, I talked with a friend who has owned a local automotive service center for forty years. I described the job to him and provided him detailed iPhone pictures. He said they had tools that they could cobble together to extract the sensor. He estimated a cost of about two hours labor with me furnishing the part. Upon completion, he said the job was most frustrating to his techs because of difficulty accessing the sensor. While I am a DIYer on most jobs like this, I am glad I farmed this one out!!