What was Ford thinking?

This is a discussion on What was Ford thinking? within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; So I had to put new batteries in the Excursion yesterday. Being a Diesel it needs two. This being my first Ford since getting burned ...

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    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    What was Ford thinking?

    So I had to put new batteries in the Excursion yesterday. Being a Diesel it needs two. This being my first Ford since getting burned on a 1968 Mustang back in 1983 I wasn't sure what to expect. So based on my experience with my old Suburban I set about rounding up the tools necessary to swap out the batteries. After locating the 5/16 wrench, ratchet and extension and a couple of sockets that were scattered amongst the left over Suburban parts I popped the hood on the Excursion.

    Cable ends take a 5/16. The battery cover that is part of the cold air intake system just snaps in place. The hold downs are 5/16 as well! And for the one on the drivers side where I knew I could never get down to it with a wrench, they have a bolt about six inches long with shoulder on it to press against the hold down!

    What is the world coming to when you can do stuff like swap batteries out with a single basic tool?
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    Member Array Geezer's Avatar
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    Yep, same for Jeep. I changed the battery on my Cherokee and needed both metric and SAE wrenches/sockets. I think all of the manufacturers have a "let's make every task difficult" department.

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    Member Array redbeardsong's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geezer View Post
    Yep, same for Jeep. I changed the battery on my Cherokee and needed both metric and SAE wrenches/sockets. I think all of the manufacturers have a "let's make every task difficult" department.
    I think the OP was being facetious. It sounds like it was actually easy, contrary to his expectations.

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    VIP Member Array NC Bullseye's Avatar
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    It's getting back to needing only one tool. Sad thing is the tool you will need is a dealership mechanic.
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    When the service engine light comes on over some silly fault, it takes a $2500 plug in box to turn it off.
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    Basically all current vehicles are nearly impossible for the owner to work on. They are designed to be that way, so you have to take them to the dealer or other mechanic.

    I remember replacing the water pump on my 1983 Chevy Cavalier needed to have the, belt, then the fan removed, and each bolt holding the pump in place was a combination of S.A.E. and metric and different sizes to boot. I spent more on tools than the replacement pump.

    I have often said however that if people who design automobiles were ever forced to work on what they design, autos would never be designed the way they currently are.
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    I'm always kicking myself for selling my Bronco. I bought it new in '95 with the big engine, tow package, 4WD, the whole nine yards...

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    Member Array WonderBra's Avatar
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    Ford has come a long way. Having the former exec of Boeing as your CEO can make good things happen.
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    Trade you for the battery compartment in my Dodge Stratus. In order to replace the battery, you have to:

    - jack the car up
    - remove the driver's side front wheel
    - remove about a dozen fasteners and remove the wheel well liner
    - remove the battery hold down bar

    Complete pain in the tail.
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    We should probably be asking about how to change the oil, battery, all filters, etc, prior to buying the car.
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    Ex Member Array F350's Avatar
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    I had a 71 F150 with the straight 6 300....... When it came time for a tune up (plugs, points and condenser) I climbed into the engine compartment and sat on the inner fender to work. On my F350 diesel there is a clamp on the tubo that only a young boy can get his hand in to tighten.

    Try changing the battery on my Chrysler 300, have to take the right front wheel off and open a hatch in the fender well; change a headlight bulb, have to take the front end half way apart.

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    VIP Member Array mcp1810's Avatar
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    Back when I was a mechanic I can remember Ford changing one bolt that held the ignition module on the side of the distributor on the Escort. If you wanted to replace it you had to buy a $20 9/32 deep well thin wall socket. The Snap On Tools man was in heaven!

    Turns out I don't need any tools at all to replace my fuel filter. Just unscrew the cap, pull the filter out, stick the new one in and screw the cap back on. It is almost like they actually want me to do my own maintenance on this thing! I have not looked yet but I would not be surprised if the drain plugs on the axles are 3/8 square that you can just stick an extension in. I bet the oil drain is 19mm so I can use a metric or a 3/4 inch wrench on it.

    My Chevys (1975 to 1994 models) were all a mix and match set up of S.A.E. and metric fasteners.

    At the moment it looks like I no longer need about 90% of my tool box!
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    Member Array Maxwell47's Avatar
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    Carefull! I've heard horror stories concerning self swapping batteries on newer vehicles messing up the on board computers... All heresay and no personal experience so...

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    Distinguished Member Array Arborigine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcp1810 View Post
    What is the world coming to when you can do stuff like swap batteries out with a single basic tool?
    You never could, doing it properly. You need a cable puller and a terminal expander, so you don't over-stress the terminals with a hammer or pliers causing leaks. You need a special brush or scraper tool to clean the connections. You need some grease to keep the bolts from rusting and wire brushes to get them that way. That doesn't even touch on the maintenance and testing equipment.

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    Distinguished Member Array GunGeezer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcp1810 View Post
    Back when I was a mechanic I can remember Ford changing one bolt that held the ignition module on the side of the distributor on the Escort. If you wanted to replace it you had to buy a $20 9/32 deep well thin wall socket. The Snap On Tools man was in heaven!

    Turns out I don't need any tools at all to replace my fuel filter. Just unscrew the cap, pull the filter out, stick the new one in and screw the cap back on. It is almost like they actually want me to do my own maintenance on this thing! I have not looked yet but I would not be surprised if the drain plugs on the axles are 3/8 square that you can just stick an extension in. I bet the oil drain is 19mm so I can use a metric or a 3/4 inch wrench on it.

    My Chevys (1975 to 1994 models) were all a mix and match set up of S.A.E. and metric fasteners.

    At the moment it looks like I no longer need about 90% of my tool box!
    I still have the special tool for loosening the points and condenser on the old 50's-60's Chevy 6's as well as the 9/32" Ford dist. module socket. I still change the oil on my Duramax diesel truck but that's about it.

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