Hello, my crownvic.net brethren,

In this edition of late-night write up threads, I will give you my tips and tricks on how to fix that nasty passenger-side exhaust manifold leak WIHOUT removing the manifold (and breaking studs). I might make a video on this. Here's what you need:

1. Long neck flat-head screwdriver, pair of gloves, and some shop towels
2. Muffler cement/exhaust putty (you can easily find this at your local auto parts store)
3. Jack & jack stands (your OEM scissor jack works perfectly)
4. Breaker bar, 21mm socket, torque wrench, and tire iron (optional)
5. Ratchet and 8mm socket
6. Sheer willpower

First, make sure your car is on relatively level ground. You wanna work on it while the engine is cold. Get your lugnuts on the passenger side front wheel loose (but not off) and then jack up that section of the car. Remove the lugnuts off the wheel and take the wheel off.

For the next step you're gonna remove the wheel well. There are two 8mm bolt with giant washers up at the top near the fender. You're gonna remove those. (There might be a nut near the battery area. Not sure, my car had a stud but no nut on it.) Pop the hood; there are three wire connections clipped on the wheel well, and you can just pull them off. When you're done, move the wheel well around to where you can drop it. Now that it's out of the way, on to the fun part.

For a good bit of the manifold, you can apply the exhaust putty by hand. Get some putty on your glove finger and apply it right where the manifold meets the head. You're gonna need to access it from multiple angles (from the side and under the car, occasionally through tight areas). You won't be able to reach everywhere, but that's where the next part comes in. Get your long flat-head screwdriver and get some exhaust putty on it. The long neck will help you reach into all the narrow gaps and areas your hands can't reach. Wipe off any excess exhaust putty with your towels once you're done.

Once you've applied an adequate amount of exhaust putty, allow it to set for at least 2-3 hours (24 hours optimal). Until then, reinstall everything. Place the wheel well back in, clip the wires back in, screw those bolts back in (you don't need to torque them, this ain't screws holding your camshaft in).

I'm gonna assume most of us know how to change wheels, but if any of you don't know, here's a quickie. Lift the wheel back up onto the wheel bearing and thread the lugnuts back on by hand. If they're resisting, you're crossthreading them and you need to restart threading. Get them hand tight with the wheel flush with the wheel bearing. Lower your car just enough for the tire to touch the ground. Grab your torque wrench and torque each lugnut in a star pattern to 95 ft-lbs. Lower the car the rest of the way.

If you followed everything correctly, you have successfully eliminated the dreadful passenger-side exhaust leaking. No more annoyance in the cabin. The way this works is that the exhaust putty hardens into a cement-like substance that seals gaps and connections. This fixed it for me and now I know I have work to do on the other side. If you have any questions, let me know. Might post pictures tomorrow.

Easily the youngest Panther owner on the planet.

2004 P71 - 8/12/2019-present - Teenager-owned and maintained Ex-Sheriff Car w/ 87K miles
DIY 2.5" Catback Dual Exhaust; Posi 3.73 & Manual on the wishlist
Noico Sound Deadening
$370 Maaco Black Paint Job (self prep work)
Plowed by a minivan and still running better than ever.

Your imagination, DIY skills and wallet are the only limits when it comes to modifying a Panther car.