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After putting it off for too long, I'm in the middle of changing out the intake manifold gasket. Being a po boy means I gotta do it myself, instead of $700 at the dealership. And I don't trust these pretend mechanics around here.
I'm also changing out the radiator, belts and hoses while I'm at it. So far I have the fuel rail off, the outside bolts off the top, PS pump loose, bolts to the lower section off and it's loose but not going anywhere, and now I can see 2 of the three lower, inside bolts. The center one is loose, but that's as far as I've been able to get to. The other 2, LOL, I have no idea. Every angle is blocked. I've removed every piece of plastic that I can to get to it from the underside, HA! Yeah right. I mean I've taken farm tractors apart, replaced engines and trannys, but this takes the cake. What did I get myself into? As you can guess, HELP! I'll be checking back to see if ya'll got any suggestions, (besides dynamite).
 

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Got dynamite? Think I'll put it back together, wait for my rebate check and see if I can find a decent mechanic who can do this.
 

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2001 Altima. My daughter's boyfriend is a mechanic at the Ford dealership, took a look at it and said it can be done. He's bringing some tools and will help me out. Thank God!!!
 

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i figured it was a 2.4 you were talking about...the only way, and the easiest way to get to the bolts is to take the throttle body and brackets off, once they are out of the way you can reach all the way under the manifold and get to those lower bolts on the passenger side...don't forget to take the brackets off the rear of the intake manifold, i have forgotten about those before and i was tempted to use a 4 ft. prybar to move the manifold. also be really careful replacing the pcv valve into the rubber grommet it fits into, its really easy to pinch or roll that o-ring and its a pain in the ass to get to...plus when you start it up it will have a vacuum leak, and since you cant even see the hose when its all back together, it will likely drive you nuts trying to figure out where its coming from...
 

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After putting it off for too long, I'm in the middle of changing out the intake manifold gasket. Being a po boy means I gotta do it myself, instead of $700 at the dealership. And I don't trust these pretend mechanics around here.
I'm also changing out the radiator, belts and hoses while I'm at it. So far I have the fuel rail off, the outside bolts off the top, PS pump loose, bolts to the lower section off and it's loose but not going anywhere, and now I can see 2 of the three lower, inside bolts. The center one is loose, but that's as far as I've been able to get to. The other 2, LOL, I have no idea. Every angle is blocked. I've removed every piece of plastic that I can to get to it from the underside, HA! Yeah right. I mean I've taken farm tractors apart, replaced engines and trannys, but this takes the cake. What did I get myself into? As you can guess, HELP! I'll be checking back to see if ya'll got any suggestions, (besides dynamite).
I just did this last week, it took 3 days, but it is doable.


Cylinder 4 misfire

To test if it is the gasket:
Spray carb cleaner on intake manifold around #4 cylinder(that is the one on driver side)
if it stops ideling rough when you spray on the manifold, the problem is a bad
intake manifold gasket.

There are 8 bolts and 2 nuts that hold the manifold in place.
One of the bolts underneath the car is hard to get at since it is behind the blow by tube
of the pvc valve. The two nuts on the end are on studs. It is recommended that
after you take off the nuts for the studs, you should also remove the studs to give you
clearance to move the manifold in order to remove the old gasket.


Fluids to be drained first:
Oil
Antifreeze


Suggestion:
If you are not a full time mechanic you may want to take digital pics as you go
so can put everything back. ( it can really pay off…………….)

Braces:
One brace in underneath the car on the passengers side next to the oil filter. It is
a black tubular brace ( remove it) .
The other brace in on the drivers side accessabe from the engine compartment on the
drivers side underneath the throttle body. Remove the throttle body and you will find
two bolts which need to be removed.


Things to remove underneath the car:
Passenger side:
Remove :
1 Wheel
2 Cv Axle
3 flex pipe exhaust from exhaust manifold , to give you room to work, you'll need it.
4 oil filter housing
5 Black tubular brace
6 power steering hose (thick black tube , runs up to right side of engine compartment,
note it also has 4 copper compression washers (two on each end)
be ready with a container to catch the fluid when it is disconnected.
7 black 4 inch tube and pcv valve. Note pcv valve goes into a rubber bushing which
is in the breather box ( 3 inch square silver box with 3 bolts holding it in, 2 on top .
and one underneath. Clips holding the blow by tube is hard to get off since
it is a very confined space.

8 There are 3 bolts you need to take out of the intake manifold from underneath the car:
the middle one and the one to left of the middle one are fairly easy to get off, but
the one to the right of the middle one (one behind the 4" blow by tube and pvc"
can be difficult. After I loosened it up, I used a magnet to actually remove it and
later when I installed it, I used the magnet again. ***not much room in there***,
and that is why I recommend taking off the flex pipe exhaust.




Things to remove from engine compartment:

Disconnect the fuel rail
Top part of power steering hose (big black hose on passenger side next to fire wall)
mass air flow sensor
vacuum hoses
fuel lines
throttle body and cables

Bolts on the manifold :
from the engine compartment you can take off :
2 nuts (one on each end, which are on threaded studs)
3 bolts on the top of the manifold
2 bolts on the lower side of the manifold at each end

you should also take out the 2 threaded studs, you will need a star socket
to remove them.

If everything is disconnected you should be able to separate the intake
manifold to clean the old gasket and replace it with a new one.
**** take as much time as needed to make sure the gasket surface of the
manifold in clean and you removed "ALL" of the old gasket. If you don’t
it will leak. Look , look and look again to make sure it is clean.
 

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After wairting for a month for help to arrive I ended up doing it myself. After a couple failed attempts, jacked the car so the wheels were 6" off the ground. Bought a 12mm gear wrench (Priceless!). Removed the flex exhaust pipe and proceeded to remove the bolts. The biggest PITA of the three was the one on the passenger side. Took a 12 pt. box end wrench and backed it out 1 pt. at a time. Then used a screwdriver to hold it in installed it the same way. Fired it up today and it runs like a striped ape.
 

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Also installed a new radiator, the old one was held together with epoxy, new hoses, belts, oil and antifreeze. The stick epoxy works well in a pinch if the plastic cracks. I drove on it for a year like that.
 
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