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How To: Change the Oil and Filter on a 1999 to 2007 Ford F250


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    • By Counterman
      Continental has added a new line of filtration products to its fast-growing aftermarket portfolio.
      The new line features a wide range of OE-quality oil, fuel, air and cabin filters for applications on domestic and import cars, vans, SUVs and light trucks.
      “Built to ensure safe engine operation and clean air in the vehicle interior, our premium OE-quality filters are designed to deliver reliable protection against dirt, abrasion, ultrafine particles and moisture for injection systems, engines and passengers,” said Laura Huerst, Continental product manager. “These world-class filters are produced to the same quality and performance standards we apply to our original-equipment parts.”
      Continental premium oil filters are manufactured using the most advanced technologies and innovative filter media available to ensure the best engine performance and minimum fuel consumption, according to the company. This is especially important as the industry’s use of new “long-life” oils and longer service intervals continue to increase.
      The filters are offered in spin-on and immersion designs.
      Continental air filters help ensure a constant air supply to the combustion chamber by efficiently filtering out impurities and dirt particles that can clog injectors, increase engine wear and affect fuel consumption. They are designed to deliver superior efficiency and feature a high dirt-particle-absorption capacity, according to Continental.
      Continental cabin filters feature a pollen and active carbon formulation that provides the best possible atmosphere and comfort in the vehicle interior, even under adverse weather conditions.
      The cabin filters offer a very high level of efficiency and microbiological decomposition, as well as an excellent resistance to moisture. The pollen filters are made of nonwoven material that can capture more than 90% of particles with a diameter of over 2 μm. The nonwoven activated carbon filters can capture particles of 0.01 to 2 μm and effectively prevent gas, bacteria, fungi and odors from entering the vehicle’s interior, according to the company.
      Continental gasoline fuel filters employ cutting-edge technology to meet the demands of modern high-performance fuel injection systems. The filters are designed to retain impurities less than a micrometer and also separate water from fuel to help prevent power loss and potential engine damage.
      For more information, visit
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    • By Counterman
      Over the years, I’ve been in many different roles in an automotive shop, from sweeping and washing cars to technician, shop manager and owner. As a result, I’ve heard many different approaches to selling oil filters. Many times, I was just listening in, sometimes on the receiving end of a sales pitch, sometimes on the delivering end, explaining to a customer what filter is being used on their vehicle, and why there can be a drastic difference in cost.
      Overall, there’s a lot to consider – from both sides – but the best place to start is with the facts. There are multiple manufacturers of oil filters, and as with many things, they’re often branded and sold under different names. Keeping track of who makes what can seem to change quicker than the weather, and as a technician, I always relied on my suppliers – the counter professionals – to keep me in the loop.
      Under any given brand, there usually are at least two and sometimes more grades, or quality, of filters. The only real exceptions are OEM-branded filters, which generally don’t offer options. They tend to offer a top-of-the-line filter. But no matter how you stack it, quality is the factor that drives the price, and rightfully so, as it also drastically affects the performance.
      Selling is all about knowing and differentiating between the levels of filter, and it comes down to the individual components that make up the filter itself. I’ll use a typical spin-on filter as the basis for explanation.
      The filter housing is where dependability begins. High-quality steel is important for a tough, sturdy housing, because not only must it protect against pressure surges, but no filter is immune to the possibility of getting hit by road debris, and a sturdy housing also guards against punctures. Additional features such as a non-slip or textured grip applied to the outside simply make it easier to install and remove them.
      The seals all might look the same, but they’re all not created equal. It’s generally known to apply a thin film of clean engine oil to the seal before installing the filter. The reason, if your customer asks, is that it reduces the friction that normally builds between the oil-filter flange and the seal, preventing damage and potential leaks. However, the oil also is forced out as the filter is tightened, resulting in high seal friction during removal.
      Many filters now use an internally lubricated seal, which is one that’s made with friction-reducing ingredients in the elastomer formula. Not only does this offer additional protection during installation as the oil film is forced out, but it also allows for much easier removal. If you’ve ever removed an oil filter or heard someone talk about one that feels as if it’s been welded in place, you’ll appreciate an internally lubricated seal.
      On filters designed for longer synthetic oil-change intervals, nitrile rubber seals offer extended durability and temperature protection.
      Now let’s get to the business end, on the inside of the filter. The main components are the media, the relief valve and an anti-drainback valve.
      There are different types of media, the most basic being a cellulose type. However, there also is synthetic filter media or microglass media, and many different proprietary media blends as well. This is a science all on its own, but it makes a big difference, and it simply comes down to how much dirt they trap and how long the filter efficiently traps dirt while allowing for proper, unrestricted oil flow.
      The relief, or bypass, valve is designed to open and allow oil flow under extreme conditions in which the oil is too thick or if the filter becomes plugged. It’s important that this is a well-made part of the filter.
      Last but not least is the anti-drainback valve that keeps oil in the filter to provide protection at startup. It’s just one more hidden piece of the oil filter. They all might look the same on the outside, but there’s a clear difference, and ultimately, engine protection depends on what you can’t see.
      Selling to the DIYer
      Knowing and being able to educate your customer on what makes a quality oil filter gives you the confidence to sell top-of-the-line, every time. But you must be careful characterizing a value-line filter as a low-quality filter – especially if it’s part of your branded line. One approach is to represent a value-line filter as a quality filter that’s designed for more frequent changes, so your customer has the understanding that the filter won’t last as long.
      Then you can point out how the different media in a higher-quality filter provides better filtration for a longer period of time, which leads into the additional selling features of more expensive filters. If someone opts for the value-line filter, you’ve still given them the feeling they’re getting a quality filter.
      I also like to use the “positive-reinforcement” approach. Many people will come through the door with a pre-conceived notion of the best filter there is, or a filter brand they prefer. When a customer asks for a certain brand, then asks you what you think of them, you’re always better off agreeing that you, too, like that brand.
      By agreeing with a customer’s choice, not only does this build rapport by making them feel knowledgeable, but it also makes them more likely to trust your opinion. Maybe that’s not a brand you stock, or maybe you have a better deal that includes a different filter – for example a bundle offer. Since you’ve already gained their trust by agreeing with their initial choice of filters, you then can easily compare how another brand “has the same quality features,” for example, and if the customer knows that another filter is “just as good” as their original choice, they’ll most likely be willing to buy.
      Selling to Professionals
      This crosses over into different territory. When you’re selling to a shop or professional technician, you generally don’t have to educate them about the construction and quality of filters. We’re all familiar with the fact that top-line filters are much better, which is why we use those products on our vehicles. Truth be told, I’ve used several different brands of filters over the years, but I always use top-of-the-line. I don’t skimp and I’ve never experienced a filter-related issue, or any oil-related issue for that matter.
      As technicians, however, we have other hurdles to jump. More often than not, we’re dealing with oil changes that are way over their interval, and the other big one is price competition. Many of us truly care about the quality of our oil-change services, but it’s a simple fact that one of the most popular forms of marketing to get people into a shop is the lure of an affordable oil change. This approach is highly exploited by shops that simply don’t care about the cars. They’re looking at the bottom line and what they can upsell when the vehicle is on the lift.
      Of course, upsells are important and we all do it, but there’s the honest upsell and then there’s the other … a topic for another day. As far as the oil change, there are some established shops that may take the stance of only offering top-of-the-line filters and the cost is the cost, take it or leave it. But due to demographics and local competition, many shops have no choice but to offer inexpensive oil changes, simply to remain competitive and get traffic through the door.
      I’ve heard many a sales rep talk down their value-line filters in an attempt to stock the shelves of a local shop with their better and best products. That doesn’t mean they’re wrong about the quality or that we don’t agree as technicians. However, as I just pointed out, we know from the standpoint of running a business that we simply may have no choice but to stock low-line product in order to remain competitive.
      One thing you can do to help professional shops is provide them tools – such as counter displays or pamphlets – that explain what makes a top-of-the-line filter different from a value-line filter. This makes it much easier to offer different levels of oil-change services that include higher-quality filters. It’s always our goal to sell top-of-the-line, but you’d be surprised how tough it can be with so many shops offering inexpensive oil changes. The more tools we have to sell top-of-the-line, the more we can stock in our shops.
      Upsells
      For your walk-in customer or the DIYer, you always should offer an upsell – not from a negative or pushy standpoint, but out of professionalism and sharing your knowledge, making sure they have everything they need to get the job done. Never assume. But, it’s a safe bet that if they need an oil filter, they’re changing the oil too – even if they aren’t getting any oil. They may already have the oil. A drain pan and shop towels are number one. Just ask if they need either, and it’s always best to replace the oil drain-plug gasket.
      link hidden, please login to view Funnels are a good upsell, because how many of us can really hit that hole every time, right on the money? I even like the “extra quart of oil for the trunk.” You’d be surprised how many people agree with that idea.
      This is more of a rarity, but if they’re working on an older vehicle (pre-catalytic converter), make sure to ask them if they need a zinc additive for the engine oil. Oil-filter wrenches are another good upsell, as well as latex gloves and hand cleaner.
      Tech Tips
      There are a few extra things you can suggest that can help your customer. One, if the filter is an element-style filter, check the box and make sure it contains the replacement O-rings for the filter housing. Remind them to be sure to use them. Also remind them about using a thin film of clean engine oil on the filter seal before installing.
      Some newer vehicles are designed with single-use drain plugs that require special tools to remove. If they have one of these, not only could they be looking for the tool, but they also might ask if you really have to replace the drain plug. The answer is to recommend “yes.” Is it overkill? Some may argue it is, but these are plastic plugs that turn and lock in place, quickly losing their tension with multiple uses. Have I personally ever seen one fall out? No, not yet, but if the manufacturer says to replace them every time, that’s what I do. Nobody wants to take the chance of ruining an engine.
      Sharing what you know makes oil-filter sales easy, and it’s the basics like this that brings customers back to your store.
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    • By Counterman
      Alligator sens.it RS universal TPMS sensors now cover the 2020-2021 Ford Bronco.
      “This vehicle has hit the market by storm and Alligator is proud to offer service for this impressive new SUV,” Alligator said in a news release.
      The all-terrain Bronco is another addition to the expanding list of Ford vehicles that can automatically learn and detect TPMS sensors once installed into each wheel assembly, or if rotating tires at regular intervals.
      Alligator offers these instructions: Simply install the new Alligator sens.it RS universal TPMS sensors, then begin driving the SUV, and the system will register the new IDs automatically while driving. Based on the instruction manual, make sure to park the vehicle the required amount of time for the TPMS system to enter into relearn mode (usually 20 minutes).
      The Alligator sens.it RS universal TPMS sensor also supports location detection, so when rotating tires, there’s no need to reset the system manually. Simply follow the same procedure as auto-learning and the display will show the new tire locations on the dash after driving for a few minutes.
      “By continuing to use Alligator sens.it RS universal TPMS sensors, shops can ensure they are working with a part that supports the full range of OE features, which helps make the job easier, reduces unnecessary downtime in the bay for TPMS learning or general sensor issues, helps the bottom line and, most importantly, keeps customers happy and coming back,” the company said. “When replacing OEM sensors with aftermarket sensors, rest assured that RS Series TPMS sensors from Alligator will provide all the functionality your car delivers. Regardless of the tool you use to program your Alligator TPMS sensors, this new application should be available for programming after you complete the latest update.”
      Alligator is a brand of
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    • By OReilly Auto Parts
      How To: Change the Oil and Filter On a 2004 to 2011 Ford Focus

    • DIY like a pro! Shop from over 1,000,000 Repair Manuals at eManualOnline.com! As low as $14.99 per manual. Shop now.


      DIY like a pro! Shop from over 1,000,000 Repair Manuals at eManualOnline.com! As low as $14.99 per manual. Shop now.


      DIY like a pro! Shop from over 1,000,000 Repair Manuals at eManualOnline.com! As low as $14.99 per manual. Shop now.

    • By Counterman
      The first of the Ford “modular” engines was a 4.6-liter V-8 that appeared in the 1991 Lincoln Town Car. The family soon grew into six unique displacements, including a V-10. Three decades later, the modular family is still around, most popularly in the current 5-liter “Coyote” trim.
      Let’s look back at some of these original engines, the vehicles they powered and a few of the reasons we still hear about this engine family on a regular basis.
      But first, a disclaimer: The “modular” name doesn’t refer to parts interchangeability, although some of these engine designs share common features. In this case, “modular” refers to the manufacturing processes used at the Romeo, Windsor and Essex engine plants to produce these engines quickly for a wide range of platforms. Each of these engines has distinct design features, and some need to be catalogued carefully – utilizing VIN, application and model-year information to properly identify components.
      The original 4.6-liter was a two-valve SOHC V-8 engine found in the Town Car, Crown Victoria and Grand Marquis. The 4.6-liter was designed as a replacement for the old pushrod 5-liter and 5.8-liter (aka the “302” and “351”), a trend that continued as the pushrod engine slowly disappeared from the Thunderbird, Mustang and F-Series trucks throughout the mid to late 1990s. These early engines were built in Romeo, Michigan, and Windsor, Ontario, and the two have distinctly different timing drives and cylinder-head designs.
      Identifying Romeo-built and Windsor-built 4.6-liter engines can be as simple as decoding a VIN – providing the engine is still in its original vehicle. Unfortunately, Ford chose to identify the Romeo engines with a “W” in the 8th VIN position, while the Windsor engine was assigned the number “6”!
      Looking at the engines themselves also gives a few clear clues, in case you’re dealing with an engine “in the wild,” or a possible transplant. The valve covers on the Romeo engine are held down with 11 bolts, while Windsors feature 13/14 bolt patterns. Beneath the timing covers, you’ll also find that Romeo cam gears are bolted to the camshaft, and Windsor cam gears are pressed onto their shafts. Even bare blocks can be identified easily by locating the “R” or “W” casting marks on each engine – and this time “W” actually means WINDSOR!
      F-Series trucks received a new modular option in 1997 in the form of the 5.4-liter, another two-valve SOHC V-8. The same year, E-Series vans were the first to receive the new modular 6.8-liter V-10. These engines were manufactured in the two Canadian plants, so there are no Romeo versions. These modular truck engines became known as the “Triton” series, which became a point of confusion a few years later when Ford introduced a THREE-valve cylinder-head design to the family.
      Triton would seem to indicate “three” of something, just like tricycles have three wheels or triangles have three sides, but the name pre-dates the first of the three-valve designs introduced in 2004. Triton truck engines can be found in both two- and three-valve versions, and the last 4.6-liter modular engine (produced in 2014) actually was a two-valve Triton engine.
      In addition to the trucks, three-valve engines were found in Mustangs and SUVs, but the modular family also included a series of four-valve DOHC engines in both 4.6-liter and 5.4-liter displacements. These were fit primarily in SVT, Shelby and other performance-oriented vehicles, but the Lincoln lineup also received the four-valve DOHC treatment periodically throughout the modular years. The current 5-liter Coyote continues this 4V DOHC tradition, along with its derivative 5.2-liter Voodoo/Predator, and 5.8-liter Trinity cousins.
      The 4.6-, 5.4- and 6.8-liter engines were plagued with spark plug issues in both the two-valve and three-valve versions. 1997-2008 modular two-valve engines with aluminum cylinder heads were prone to stripping spark plug threads, often ejecting the spark plug forcefully from its cylinder port.
      The three-valve design did not have thread-stripping issues, but the unique two-piece spark plug that Ford used in the three-valve engines from 2004-2007 has a tendency to snap in half during removal, leaving a difficult-to-remove stump of electrode shell at the bottom of the spark plug well. Several tool companies have developed plug-removal kits for the 3V vehicles, and thread-repair kits for the 2V applications. Ford redesigned the 3V heads (and spark plugs) for 2008, and has since upgraded the plugs specified for the 2004-2007 engines. Aftermarket companies also have developed one-piece replacement spark plugs for these applications, which decreases the chances of that tune-up going horribly wrong!
      Even though these modular engines have been around for a long time, the applications in which they originally were installed lend themselves to longevity. They still are present in fleets, from taxis and police cars to cargo vans and work trucks. Of course, modular Mustangs of all varieties continue to be enthusiast favorites, from daily driving to competition at drag strips, autocross and circle-track events. The secondary market for the Crown Victoria also includes motorsports, as they have become the preferred demolition-derby car in most full-size classes, and there are even racing series exclusively for P71 (police-package) Vics!
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