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Oil pan removal

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Figured I would start a new thread regarding this. If I do my rear main seal, I have seen a video where a guy uses a bottle jack to help get clearance for the pan. My question is had anyone else done this and do you have to take all the stuff apart like he did? Thanks guys

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We dropped the oil pan to replace the oil pump this past summer. Without knowing exactly which video you saw, the answer is probably yes. We ended up disconnecting much of the front suspension to get enough clearance to drop the oil pan. 


The suspension has to be disconnected to get enough clearance to get the oil pan in and out without hitting the axle in the front and transmission in the back.

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Oil pan removal on an MJ/XJ almost ALWAYS requires that the front axle be allowed to "droop" lower than what the factory design specifications allow.   This applies even if the vehicle has up to about a 3" lift.


Knowing this, here is the best way to get the pan off:

1.   Jack the vehicle up until the vehicle is high enough that the front wheels are off the ground when the front shock absorbers are FULLY extended.  Support the chassis of the vehicle in this position.


2.   Remove the front wheels and place a jack under the axle in the middle of the span.


3.   Lift the axle slightly to take the load off the lower shock absorber attaching bolts, and remove those bolts on each side.  Let the axle droop lower by about 3 inches.  SUPPORT the axle with jack stands in this position.  

NOTE #1--Be careful not to overstretch the brake caliper hoses when doing this.   If they become stretched, remove the caliper from the axle, and hook it to the coil spring to keep the brake hose from being damaged.

NOTE #2--The sway bar links (if equipped) may need to be removed from the sway bar temporarily to allow the axle to droop sufficiently in some cases.


4.   Remove the starter from the vehicle.  Be sure to DISCONNECT THE BATTERY before doing thi.


5.  Once the axle is lowered enough and the starter is out, the oil pan bolts can all be removed, and the pan can be dropped and slid rearward out of the vehicle.


The bolts that hold the pan to the block are two sizes:  the smaller ones attach the pan in all locations except the four "corners" of the pan, where a larger bolt is used in those specific spots.


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