2004 Ford Taurus Change a Fuel Filter

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The fuel filter on your Taurus has a big jobto do, filtering the huge amount of fuel sent through it every day. Although the fuel filter is encased in metal, it's filled with a special kind of filtering paper. Your engine's running gas passes through the filter paper while small particles of rust and dirt do not. Over time, dirt from around the filler tube--as well as dirt deposited into the fuel tank during fill-ups--clogs the fuel filter. Your engine may backfire, stall out repeatedly or fail to start at all. On the 2004 Taurus, the fuel filter mounts beneath the caron the frame rail near the rear passenger door. Changing it at home should take you 40 minutes.

[edit] Tools Used

Tools
Socket wrench
Electrical tape
Car jack
Jack stand
Safety glasses
Shop rag
Metal catch pan
Fuel line disconnect tool T90T-9550-B

[edit] Change a Fuel Filter

  • Remove the fuse from the fuse panel in the interior of the car that powers the fuel pump. The fuse panel cover should identify which fuse it is--if not, check your owner's manual under "fuses."
  • Remove the fuel filler cap and start the Taurus' engine. Allow the engine to run until it stalls out. After it stalls, try four additional times to start your engine, but wait five seconds between each try to avoid overheating the starter.
  • Raise the hood and remove the negative battery cable with a socket wrench. Isolate the cable's terminal or wrap it with electrical tape to assure it doesn't contact any metal during the repair.
  • Raise the Taurus near the rear passenger door with a car jack; position your jack stand right next to the car jack. Raise the support arm on the jack stand and secure it with its locking pin.
  • Put on your safety glasses and use a shop towel to wipe down both fuel lines going to the fuel filter as well as the filter itself. This helps to cut down the possibility of dirt getting into your fuel lines once the filter is removed, so be as thorough as possible.
  • Position a metal catch pan directly beneath the fuel filter. Slide the fuel line disconnect tool over the fuel line and push it into the quick connect fitting. Pull the fuel line off the filter and repeat this process for the other side as well. A small amount of fuel may drip from both hoses, but don't worry--gas won't come gushing out.
  • Loosen the retaining clip bolt holding the fuel filter in place. There is an arrow on it, and before you remove the filter, make note of the direction the arrow points. Slide the old fuel filter out of the retaining clip and then insert the new fuel filter in its place. Tighten the retaining clip bolt until it's snug, but no more.
  • Connect each of the fuel lines to the new fuel filter one at a time. Push the fuel lines onto the filter until you hear a "click." If no click is heard, the fuel line is not secured and will leak once the system tries to pressurize itself.
  • Remove the jack stand and lower the car back down completely. Put the fuel filler cap back on securely and reinstall the fuel pump fuse. Unwrap the tape on the negative battery cable if you taped it and secure the cable back to the battery.
  • Turn the ignition key forward and wait 10 seconds. Start the engine and let it run while you check the new fuel filter to see if it's leaking. Allow the car to sit for 15 minutes with the engine running before you take it for a test drive.

[edit] Tips & Warnings

  • If you see any drips or leaks--no matter how small--coming from the fuel filter, immediately turn off the engine. Check the fuel lines connected to the fuel filter, as they are probably the problem. During installation, you must hear the quick connect fitting lock in place with an audible click. The sound won't be like someone shouting "CLICK," but the sound still will be very noticeable.
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