The Tale of the '89 Ford Tempo — Part 2
Well, at this point the car has been in our possession for a little over a month and has been admirably abused. On the 18th of September, we decided to go ahead and get that old exhaust manifold off that car!
The week before we had gone to the junkyard and gotten a decent looking (by 'decent', I mean in no more than one, easily identifiable piece) manifold. For those that know me, I shouldn't have to reiterate the fact that many other things came apart that day which had nothing to do with that exhaust manifold. So in the end we ended up with this thing in the trunk of a couple of cars: (not at one time... hmmm?)
Anyways, that hunk of metal does much more good attached to the engine than sitting in the trunk, so we decided it was time to do it! Yeah!
So we looked in the Haynes's how-to manual and disconnected to battery like good boys. Of course step 2 referred us to another section which required the battery to be plugged in, so we yelled some obscenities at the foliage continued. What we had to do was get the gas out of the fuel system before ripping apart the intake, which is required to get to the exhaust! (stupid car!!!) So in the trunk there is this nifty (translation: absolutely idiotic) fuel pump shut off switch. And at that point (get this) you are supposed to literally run the car out of gas. So we banged the switch and cranked the car until it wouldn't even moan at you anymore. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!
Yippy skippy, now we can proceed to NOT fry ourselves.
So then we had to take off the ugly fuel-injected intake rails so we could get to the exhaust manifolds bolts that were cleverly hidden. We followed to book for a while until it made no sense. At that point we just ripped of every little sensor or bolt that held the darn thing on.
But the Blue Oval had something special in mind for us (we found this out at the junkyard) -- the intake has a top and a bottom piece. So we were only a third of the way there.
We could finally get to the exhaust manifold bolts (rustier ones ) and could pull the manifold out from underneath. Thanks to the compact car design, we got to take off the bottom half of the intake as well -- oh, joy! This involved removing the fuel injectors from the block, as well. But finally, the whole tamale pulled out.
Of course we learned quickly why our car had been so loud -- the exhaust manifold didn't have a hole in it. Oh, no, much worse! It was split completely in two and the two pieces were hanging about 3 inches apart from each other. ("I don't hear an exhaust leak...")
While removing the exhaust manifold, we found a cold air pipe that had wiggled loose over time. It had been taped up once, but that did not do it justice. We think that the constant temperature change with no air to cool it caused it to break right in half. The shiny metal in the picture is where the cold-air hose connects.
So we bolted the new manifold onto the block and our little squiggly pipe that leads to the muffler system. Casualties - 0.0
This is from under the car. This piece runs down to the exhaust pipes hung under the car. There is the new exhaust manifold from the top. You can also see two of the fuel injectors sitting out getting covered with dirt and grime. (We probably broke some law-of-fuel-injectedness by not cleaning and covering them up while working)
Now we proceeded to put the bottom half of the intake manifold back on the car. Nick would like you to know that he hurt himself doing this. Other than that, it was pretty simple -- just dropped in the manifold and hunkered down on the bolts.
By this point the gasket that connects the top half of the intake to the bottom half of the intake was broken into at least 4 pieces. We tried numerous times to piece it together but it was not cooperating at all. So we decided to call it a night, threw stuff in the engine compartment, burned stuff, then I went home.
Two days later, we met again. This time to connect the intake and all those wretched, but all too important, sensors. I came over (to Nick's house) around 4:30 and we started to put things together. Nick had gotten the new gasket for the intake earlier that day so we got to work bolting on the top section of the intake after positioning the new gasket. Considering the unfathomable extent of our vast mechanical knowledge, the rest of the operation went off without incident. However, we did have a little trouble finding out exactly how an insignificant metal brace fit in... so we chucked it.
It was intended to brace the upper part of the intake to the lower part... must be insignificant... RIGHT??? Hmm... well, if the car starts making crunching sounds because we sucked squirrels down the intake manifold, we will know what caused it. I think this is Nick fiddling with that brace to get it in place. It didn't happen.
So anyways, at about that point we decided it was an excellent time to indulge in some caffeinated beverages, so we (looking like we swam through a garbage dump) went inside and mixed some pop with the magic carbonator machine. Anyways, I left and went out to dinner with my family or something like that. By the time I came back, car was all tidied up, oxygen sensors and all!
So, once it is together, the natural reaction is to want to start the car. Well, despite our oddities, we possessed this same desire. So Nick hopped in, and turned the key and .... NOTHING! Mr. "EconoPower" battery doesn't hold a charge worth beans, so we stole the battery out of another car (the Audi), and it started right up! The car was remarkably quiet as it idled. Heck, it was quiet when I revved it a "little." Somehow the quiet made the obnoxious ugly car into a quiet puke bucket from the 80's. Nevertheless, we had accomplished our mission. We were also proud of ourselves that the car went back together with minimal extra parts! Unfortunately, our hopes of a perfect Ford Tempo were dashed when we discovered a cloud of smoke that billowed from the engine compartment as it ran. Not surprisingly, the smell was quite nauseating.
Being cautious and astute, I pointed out this unwanted gaseous emissions to Nick. After a little investigating, by sticking our heads in random places in the engine compartment, Nick found out that smoke was coming from the new exhaust manifold. We decided to let it burn off. Since it stunk, we watered ourselves again with carbonated beverages. We kind of got sidetracked and the car ended up idling for about 15 minutes in the back lawn. Anyways, when we went to go check on the car, we noticed that the engine temperature was... a little hot.
With the coolant temperature red hot, we turned off the car immediately. (We're not THAT dumb) With the assistance of a work lamp, we found a puddle of antifreeze under the car. (Note: if you are environmentally conscience and would like to sue us for dripping harmful fluids into the ground, please send all hate mail, mail bombs, or anthrax to '1234 Bob Barker Ave. Schirongi, Taiwan)
I should mention that Nick noticed a slight drip from the radiator earlier. He looked at it and saw antifreeze dripping from a part in the radiator which was smashed up. Of course, we did nothing about it at that time. With this discovery, we decided to call it a night.
The car could not be run like this, so the next step was to replace the radiator.