Driver side exhaust manifold removal notes, getting clearance - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-01-2018, 10:41 AM Thread Starter
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Driver side exhaust manifold removal notes, getting clearance

First off, to people who got a welder into the manifold area - you deserve a medal.

After reading all the posts on this, I decided to attempt manifold removal.
I pulled the fender liner (marveled at the mindset that thought permanent fasteners were a good idea in this area). All that got was a very small "window" to the exhaust flange area.
The front approach from the battery area was just as bad.
It made me crazy, I was pissed. I got creative:
In the area of the exhaust flange is a steering column support. It's removable, out it came. The "window" got way bigger.
Pulled the battery, and tray to get forward access. Tray has wiring connectors along the rear edge.
That was a little better, but there still had to be a way for more access.
The front fuse pack is removable-held on to a plastic mount by lock tabs. A power cable is connected inside the box with a nut, and below the box are 2 gang connectors.
Loosened up the rear fuse box, pulled a gang connector, and moved that out of the way.
The plastic mount for the fuse boxes was pulled next. There were various hold down clips for the wiring looms as well.

Once I moved the loose wiring harness over, there it was; the evil manifold. Mine for the taking.
All the bolts were accessible. The steering shaft has a universal connection, and could be flexed out of the way for bolt access, another reason to pull that column support .
I was lucky on 3 broken studs (1 on the front, and 2 on the back cyl.). They twisted out with vise grips after heat with a mapp gas torch.

The manifold came out towards the front with no problems.

I was on a roll, I thought.

I discovered the back runner was out of alignment. Looks to be over .030 too "short". With a straight edge along all four runners, a gasket slides easily through the gap. Either chryco quality control is abysmal ( real possibility ) or the manifold warped once the bolts let go.

So today, I have to find someone to mill out the runner differences. That's what I get for trying this on a saturday.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-01-2018, 11:30 AM
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Thanks for the detailed post. I have an exhaust leak on that side as well. It's my daily driver so haven't had the time, and after reading your assessment, I find I really didn't have the time to tackle...lol

This will help massively to get all prepped before I dive into the full weekend deal.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-01-2018, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnc View Post
First off, to people who got a welder into the manifold area - you deserve a medal.

After reading all the posts on this, I decided to attempt manifold removal.
I pulled the fender liner (marveled at the mindset that thought permanent fasteners were a good idea in this area). All that got was a very small "window" to the exhaust flange area.
The front approach from the battery area was just as bad.
It made me crazy, I was pissed. I got creative:
In the area of the exhaust flange is a steering column support. It's removable, out it came. The "window" got way bigger.
Pulled the battery, and tray to get forward access. Tray has wiring connectors along the rear edge.
That was a little better, but there still had to be a way for more access.
The front fuse pack is removable-held on to a plastic mount by lock tabs. A power cable is connected inside the box with a nut, and below the box are 2 gang connectors.
Loosened up the rear fuse box, pulled a gang connector, and moved that out of the way.
The plastic mount for the fuse boxes was pulled next. There were various hold down clips for the wiring looms as well.

Once I moved the loose wiring harness over, there it was; the evil manifold. Mine for the taking.
All the bolts were accessible. The steering shaft has a universal connection, and could be flexed out of the way for bolt access, another reason to pull that column support .
I was lucky on 3 broken studs (1 on the front, and 2 on the back cyl.). They twisted out with vise grips after heat with a mapp gas torch.

The manifold came out towards the front with no problems.

I was on a roll, I thought.

I discovered the back runner was out of alignment. Looks to be over .030 too "short". With a straight edge along all four runners, a gasket slides easily through the gap. Either chryco quality control is abysmal ( real possibility ) or the manifold warped once the bolts let go.

So today, I have to find someone to mill out the runner differences. That's what I get for trying this on a saturday.
@johnc; My hat is off to you for tackling that job, you have FAR MORE patience than I do.


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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-02-2018, 03:24 AM Thread Starter
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And a fair amount of coin still in the bank. Got the manifold faced today. The person doing it estimated the short runner gap at close to .060" . Fired it up, and the good news is the vehicle is lots quieter. Bad news is now I can hear the smaller leak on the passenger side! And I thought the remaining gasket from the set was just going to sit around.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-04-2018, 06:29 PM Thread Starter
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Forgot about 2 more connections to the forward fuse box as well. The plug-ins are not visible when the box is in place, so remember them. Otherwise your dash will light almost every trouble icon, and your engine will quit.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 07:48 PM
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I feel your pain. I had a bad exhaust manifold leak on my 06 4.7L. Multiple studs were broken on both sides. A lot beer, cussing, thought about lighting the Jeep on fire and then I was finished. The leak is back and I probably should have replaced the exhaust manifold while I was at it, but didn't.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-06-2018, 08:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnc View Post
Forgot about 2 more connections to the forward fuse box as well. The plug-ins are not visible when the box is in place, so remember them. Otherwise your dash will light almost every trouble icon, and your engine will quit.
This post is a shining example of why I would never consider tackling a job like this, I know my limitations......LOL.


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-07-2018, 01:38 AM
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I finished mine a few weeks ago. Instead of log garbage, I found SRT8 manifolds and used Remflex graphite gaskets. I also got rid of the factory muffler and installed a Flowmaster 70. She is quiet as stock upon start up with a mild rumble. When you punch it, it has a good roar. All fasteners are stainless cap screws.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-12-2018, 10:48 AM Thread Starter
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Exhaust Manifold gasket right hand side replace.

Got the manifold off yesterday. Not too bad. And I think it breeze compared to the other side.
Pulled the air cleaner box and windshield fluid tank. There was enough slack in the lines for the tank to just move it out of the way. Pulled the small vacuum line to the vacuum reservoir. Unclipped the heater hoses from the front of the head. re-positioned them, and a wiring bundle too. Gave me room for access from above.
I did not totally disconnect the fender liner. Just pulled enough rivets so I could fold it forward.
There are 2 wire connections to sensors in the area of the manifold. They are on each end of the block. A Chrysler designer deserves punishment for this setup, as the release tabs are facing away from you. There is the same type connection on the throttle body, and you can figure out how it will come off so you can pull them by"braille". If you feel dexterious enough, you can leave the wires connected.
No broken bolts, but one of the heat shield nuts hung up. It seemed to be coming off, but actually the entire bolt was turning. The bolt came out, still attached to the heat shield. Thought the bolt had broken at that point.
On hold to have the manifold surfaced now. Planned for this so I would have a regular weekday to find a shop.
I wonder how it would affect the fender panels if they grew "lightening holes" in this area.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 09:13 AM Thread Starter
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Got it all back together. Went in the house, and the wife asked if I was done. Asked "didn't you hear me start it?", and she he had not.
"Exactly", I replied.
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