A cracked cylinder head, bad head gasket, or bent valve in your Jeep can cause loss of power or altogether prevent the engine from running. In any of these situations, pulling the cylinder head to repair or replace it is necessary to keep the engine in good operating condition. Pulling a cylinder head requires removing several major engine components, as well as attention to detail, but equipped with the right tools -- and working carefully -- you can pull the cylinder head out of your Jeep.
Things You'll Need
- Full mechanic's tool set
- Catch pan
- 1/2-inch drive ratchet
Drain the coolant from the vehicle into the catch basin. Disconnect the battery cables. Remove the coolant lines from the thermostat using the pliers or a screwdriver to loosen the hose clamps.
Relieve the pressure in the fuel system by disconnecting the fuel line from the fuel rail and draining the fuel into a catch pan. Remove the breather lines from the valve cover and remove the valve cover.
Loosen the pushrod lifters and remove the pushrods.
Remove the spark plugs and spark plug wires. Number the wires or make a diagram to show where they belong. Remove the ignition coil and ignition coil bracket.
Remove the serpentine belt by prying aside the idler pulley with a 1/2-inch drive ratchet, and sliding the belt from around the pulley. The idler pulley is located below the the air conditioning compressor on the left side of the engine. Unbolt and remove the alternator. Unbolt the air conditioning compressor mounting bolts, but not the lines. Move the compressor out of the way. Repeat for the power steering pump.
Unbolt the exhaust manifold and loosen it from the cylinder head.
Unbolt the intake manifold from the cylinder head. On a Jeep inline six cylinder, you will probably have room to push the intake manifold to the side -- do not completely remove it from the engine bay.
Remove the cylinder head bolts in a crossing pattern starting at the extremities of the cylinder head and working towards the center. The bolt at the rear right of the cylinder head cannot be completely removed without moving the cylinder head -- fully loosen the bolt, lift and support it in its place, break the head free of the block, and move it forward.
Tips & Warnings
- You may have to drive a screwdriver or wedge between the cylinder head and the engine block to loosen the head from the block.
- You can plug the ports of the intake manifold with paper towels to prevent debris from entering the manifold.
- Make sure to check the cylinders carefully for debris, and to clean any debris out of the cylinders before installing the cylinder head.
- Photo Credit jeep rouge 2 image by Jerome Dancette from Fotolia.com
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