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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,
I'm going to attempt changing the glow plugs on my E350 shuttle bus next month. This is the first time I will have worked on this engine(or any diesel for that matter) so I have been looking for walk-throughs and couldn't find a whole lot, what I did find was this write up from Kerry on the Diesel Stop.

Ever wondered how difficult it would be to replace the glow plugs on your Ford PSD van? Once the temperatures started dropping, the plumes of white smoke made me curious. I don't have pictures, but the description may help you decide if you want to DIY or not.

Of course, you’ll need to pop the hood and pull the dog-house. I removed the lower dash sections on both sides to have a little more working space too – these just pull out without screws. Better cover the seats with plastic too, the valve covers will need to come off from the inside. Having a plethora of various sized extensions, u-joint extensions as well as deep and shallow sockets will help a great deal. The passensger side looked to be the hardest side, so I started there. Remove the air box assembly, fan belt and alternator, or at least move them out of the way. Unbolt the engine oil dipstick from the valve cover. From inside the cab, remove the exhaust heat shielding. Unbolt the tranny dipstick bracket from the bellhousing and any other bracketry from the valve cover.
Most of the cover bolts can be reached from the interior. I had to access two of them from the passenger fenderwell – note that without the 3” lift from the 4x4 conversion, the wheel may need to be removed to reach this area. Starting to sound kinda strange to replace glow plugs, eh? The remainder need to be removed from under the hood, behind where the alternator mounts. Once all the bolts are removed, the cover doesn’t have enough clearance to the body to lift straight off. I was a little concerned I would have to raise the body or lower the motor off it’s mounts, but there is a better solution to the puzzle. You’ll have to slide it toward the center of the motor, over the glow plug relay and wiring then back towards you, inside the van. It’s tight, but it will slide out. Pay carefull attention to not damage the valve cover gasket – it’s a rubber gasket through which the injector and glow plug wires pass. I’m sure it’s expensive to replace.

Replacing the glow plugs isn’t hard, but you’ll need a deep 10mm socket with a short extension. They are located next to the injectors, hidden beneath bracketry. Follow the wires to find them. The wires to the glowplugs unplug easily with a sliding motion – no snap. If you encounter resistance, don’t yank on the wire very hard – it’s probably just hydrolocked with oil so use some needle nose pliers to grab the plug and twist as you pull up. Getting the wire back on the new glow plug can require some interesting finger contortions in the confines of a van housing as well. The rear three on this side can be replaced from the cab, and the front most plug from under the hood. I replaced the valve cover on the passenger side before proceding.

The driverside was a little, but not much easier. The oil inlet tube, and what I believe is probably the crankcase vent housing can both be removed from the valve cover from inside the van. You’ll also need to unbolt an intake tube bracket from both the valve cover and the intake hardware itself – this will be more apparent once your in there. None of this is very tricky, just tight confines and possibly overtight bolts.

The glow plugs are replaced as before, but it’s note worthy to mention the one closest to the hood can be very difficult to plug back in. I didn’t remove the AC compressor, so I had to do it blind by feel. You might have better luck removing the compressor, dunno.

Problems I ran into: Some of the stud bolts that serve the dual purpose of valve cover bolt and bracket mount were a little too tight. i.e. the nut holding the bracket was tighter than the stud holding the valve cover so the stud tried to back out before the bracket was removed. I suggest spaying all the studs with PB Blast penetrant beforhand. The intake brackety was very tight – I broke a craftsman 10mm socket trying to loosen one nut, luckily I had a second socket. Again, PB Blast… The whole job took about 8hrs and cost $64 for 8 Ford Motorcraft plugs from a local parts store.

Hope that helps...
Kerry
I'm wondering if anyone has any further tips or anything they'd change about this write up, before I go forward. Bringing it to a mechanic or having one come to me, is out of the realm of possibilities here, so I want to make sure I don't screw myself here.

Many thanks!
-Kaiden
 

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Get a small hose that you can put on the GP once it's loose to get it out and to get the new one started

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blow all of the oil away from the glow plugs before removal to prevent it from leaking into the cylinder once removed

ONLY use oem international or motorcraft plugs !
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Get a small hose that you can put on the GP once it's loose to get it out and to get the new one started

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Thanks, I also saw that on this video, but he doesn't mention the size of hose needed, do you know?
 

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Thanks, I also saw that on this video, but he doesn't mention the size of hose needed, do you know?
Just test it on a new one. China-zone sells hose by the foot.

The Ford GPs are made in the USA I think. The china-zone ones the tips swell and you can't get them out without breaking them which could result in removal of the cylinder head

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just test it on a new one. China-zone sells hose by the foot.

The Ford GPs are made in the USA I think. The china-zone ones the tips swell and you can't get them out without breaking them which could result in removal of the cylinder head

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So Ford wants $265 for all 8. That's before shipping. Is this normal? (nearly $400 with shipping to my island )
The Bosch ones were $110 to my door, I don't want to cheap out and be stuck with bigger and more expensive repairs down the road, but I was ready to embark on this project under the impression I wouldn't need to spend more than $150 on GPs.

Are there no safe alternatives that will fit my budget?
 

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So Ford wants $265 for all 8. That's before shipping. Is this normal? (nearly $400 with shipping to my island )
The Bosch ones were $110 to my door, I don't want to cheap out and be stuck with bigger and more expensive repairs down the road, but I was ready to embark on this project under the impression I wouldn't need to spend more than $150 on GPs.

Are there no safe alternatives that will fit my budget?
They should be $10-13 each. Just buy them on amazon or show FORD the Amazon price and ask them to match.

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Damn, bought bosch ones.
I will return them. Any particular reason you'd recommend OEM over third-party?
So Ford wants $265 for all 8. That's before shipping. Is this normal? (nearly $400 with shipping to my island )
The Bosch ones were $110 to my door, I don't want to cheap out and be stuck with bigger and more expensive repairs down the road, but I was ready to embark on this project under the impression I wouldn't need to spend more than $150 on GPs.

Are there no safe alternatives that will fit my budget?
many problems with aftermarket glow plugs.

find the best price you can get delivered for zd-11 glow plugs

 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I bought a set of motorcraft glow plugs shipped to my door for $80...


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Yeah... Everything costs more in Canada. That's exasperated by the fact that I live on a island, amazon doesn't even ship to here. Luckily I found some on ebay that do.
 

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Unfortunately, this has become a popular item to counterfeit. You don't want to buy the cheapest ones you find on eBay, in fact I wouldn't buy from Any eBay seller that wasn't a Ford dealership (and there should be several there).

Another alternative would be to buy IH plugs, they don't seem to have enough popularity for the fake product producers....
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Unfortunately, this has become a popular item to counterfeit. You don't want to buy the cheapest ones you find on eBay, in fact I wouldn't buy from Any eBay seller that wasn't a Ford dealership (and there should be several there).

Another alternative would be to buy IH plugs, they don't seem to have enough popularity for the fake product producers....
Damn. ...And they've already shipped. Another set to return. I will look for OEM ones from International.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I wouldn’t be concerned, just inspect them for proper markings on the glow plugs themselves
Well I think I finally found them on RockAuto. They weren't listed under FORD>2000>E-350>7.3L...>Ignition>Glow Plugs though, which is why I bought bosch in the first place. I assumed because they weren't listed, they didn't have stock.(I hope there wasn't some obscure reason they weren't listed there now, come to think if it... 🤔)

I bought those to eliminate any doubt of legitimacy had about the ebay ones. Here's hoping they're the last ones I buy for a long time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Glow plugs came last week, finished installing them today. Thought I might as well check the GPR while I can see it. ...it's dead, Jim.

So I got a working one, removed the IAH relay with ease to access the GPR. started taking all the wires off of it and a stud broke off, rest came off though. Then I tried removing it. The nut got ¾ of the way up before the threads stripped — or the whole time the stud had been coming out instead of the nut, not sure. The was the case for the other stud though. It is just spinning in place.

The first one I tried to just cut the stud below the nut with a keyhole saw. I made— well idk how much progress that's why I couldn't keep going.
I tried to remove the bracket for the relays, looked like it was just one bolt, but there was another, much more difficult to access one behind it. A straight 45 minutes of finagling later, I got that bolt off, but the bracket still wouldn't come off, because it seems there's yet another bolt holding it in down in the valley(I think that's where it is at least) nearly impossible for me to get at with the time, tools and patience I have.
I tried to see if my sawzall would fit there to make short work of cutting off a stud, it doesn't.

I'm out of ideas any one here have anymore I can try? Or know the secret words to convince the nuts or studs to come out?
 

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Glow plugs came last week, finished installing them today. Thought I might as well check the GPR while I can see it. ...it's dead, Jim.

So I got a working one, removed the IAH relay with ease to access the GPR. started taking all the wires off of it and a stud broke off, rest came off though. Then I tried removing it. The nut got ¾ of the way up before the threads stripped — or the whole time the stud had been coming out instead of the nut, not sure. The was the case for the other stud though. It is just spinning in place.

The first one I tried to just cut the stud below the nut with a keyhole saw. I made— well idk how much progress that's why I couldn't keep going.
I tried to remove the bracket for the relays, looked like it was just one bolt, but there was another, much more difficult to access one behind it. A straight 45 minutes of finagling later, I got that bolt off, but the bracket still wouldn't come off, because it seems there's yet another bolt holding it in down in the valley(I think that's where it is at least) nearly impossible for me to get at with the time, tools and patience I have.
I tried to see if my sawzall would fit there to make short work of cutting off a stud, it doesn't.

I'm out of ideas any one here have anymore I can try? Or know the secret words to convince the nuts or studs to come out?
Pic?

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Yikes. That's a mess. I will have to look at mine in the morning but you're saying that the nuts holding the relay on won't spin? Because of this you are trying to take off the whole bracket?

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