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V8 SHO Engine Removal

Date 2/19/08

Many thanks to John the SHO guy.



Here are the steps I followed to drop the sub frame out the bottom with the engine and transmission still intact and anchored to the sub frame. I did this to replace the transmission, then did several other maintenance items on the engine after it was dropped.


  1. Move the driverís set all the way back before you remove the battery. This will make disconnecting the steering column from the steering rack much easier.
  2. Remove the battery
  3. Remove the air box cover/MAF/flex pipe assembly. Unplug the MAF and ICT connectors, loosen clamp on throttle body, unhook air box cover, then remove assembly.
  4. Disconnect throttle and cruise control cables from throttle body and disconnect associated brackets. Place cables with brackets aside. It is not necessary to remove the cables from the accelerator pedal or the cruise control module. The cables will not interfere with dropping the sub frame.
  5. Remove valance cover under the car by removing valance-to-bumper cover screws, valance-to-wheel well liner screws (one each side), and valance to sub frame bolts (three total).
  6. Drain coolant by disconnecting the small hose that comes off the lower radiator hose under the right (passenger) side of the bumper cover.
  7. Remove degasser tank. Disconnect large hose at bottom front of tank, two small hoses on top of tank, wire harness across top of tank (take care not to break plastic tabs on tank by slowly rolling the harness out), bolt in side and nut at back, slide tank up and out of body (need to tilt somewhat to get hose bard around a/c line Ė some coolant will leak out when you do this), unplug low coolant sensor.
  8. Drain power steering reservoir (I used a suction device to pull fluid out from top of reservoir).
  9. Remove power steering reservoir. Disconnect three connections for reservoir-to-body (one bolt, three nuts). Remember which of the mounting studs has the alternator power harness bracket connected to it (usually the top stud). Turn reservoir sideways to remove fluid return line (return line will still have fluid, so be prepared to plug this with a bolt or something else). Plug reservoir return flange (reservoir will still have fluid in it). Remove large hose from power steering pump. Place rags under connection, because fluid will leak when hose is removed. Drain remainder of fluid in reservoir and set aside.
  10. Relieve pressure in fuel rail by depressing Schrader valve. Take precautions when dealing with fluid under pressure. Wear protective equipment (goggles, gloves, etc.).
  11. Disconnect fuel lines using fuel/air conditioning fittings removal tools. These can be purchased at any major auto parts store or tool outlet. After disconnecting, you may want to plug the ends, to prevent contamination of the fuel line or fuel rail.
  12. Disconnect EVAP vacuum line that runs across the top back of the surge tank and connects to vacuum port at surge tank entrance. Only need to disconnect from surge tank.
  13. Disconnect brake booster vacuum line that connects into the back of the surge tank. You only need to disconnect from the surge tank.
  14. Remove right (passenger) side cowling below windshield. Remove metal clips along front edge and plastic screws across top and lift cover off (stock plastic screws only need to be turned 180 degrees (1/2 turn) to release connection). Remove three screws that hold trough to body and lift out trough.
  15. Disconnect main wire harness from PCM by unscrewing bolt in center of the connector. Connector will back out of the PCM as you loosen retaining bolt.
  16. Disconnect the ground leads from the firewall by removing the screw located to the right (toward driver) of the EVAP module. You only need to remove the grounds from the firewall (one connects to the engine through the lower surge tank support bolt and the other goes to the PCM wire harness connector).
  17. Disconnect the upper and lower radiator hoses from the radiator. Be prepared for some coolant to drain from the hose and/or radiator when you remove the lower hose. To ease removal of the lower hose, unbolt the black angled metal guard that connects to the fan housing and runs under the lower radiator hose.
  18. Disconnect the large square wire harness that sits over the top of the transmission. Like the PCM harness, you disconnect by loosening the screw in the center of the connector.
  19. Disconnect white connector on top of transmission.
  20. Disconnect the two heater hoses located just below the driverís end of the surge tank. You only need to disconnect the hoses from the metal lines at the surge tank. Donít need to disconnect the hoses from the heater core connections at the firewall. Be prepared for some coolant to possibly leak from these hoses when they are removed.
  21. Disconnect the two coolant temperature sensors located below the throttle body.
  22. For the a/c compressor, you have two options.
    1. Remove the compressor from the engine by unbolting. Be sure to unplug the clutch cycling switch at the compressor and the Bank 1 Upstream O2 sensor.
    2. Discharge the a/c system and disconnect the manifold from the a/c compressor. This will require recharging the a/c system. Remember that it is unlawful to discharge r134a into the atmosphere.
  23. Lower radiator hose needs to be rerouted to avoid interfering with the a/c compressor discharge line, since the a/c line will stay in place while the lower radiator hose will move with the sub frame assembly.
  24. Disconnect right (passenger) side inner fender liner from sub frame by removing three plastic retainers (pry out). Some vehicles may be missing this, as the flap that connects to the sub frame is stapled to the fender liner and can fall off.
  25. For wheels, you have two options
    1. Unbolt the three studs that hold each front strut to the strut tower. Remove the brake caliper from the caliper bracket and the hose bracket from the strut and tie it up to the car body (donít let it hang by the hose). Remove inner fender liner and unplug the SARC and ABS sensors. These steps allow you to drop the sub frame with the suspension and steering attached.
    2. Remove the spindle from the strut. Disconnect tie rod end from spindle, sway bar link from sway bar, lower ball joint, brake caliper (can hang from strut spring) and caliper mount, remove rotor. Remove ABS sensor (Torx). Remove axle nut and unbolt strut pinch bolt. Break taper of lower ball joint, separate joint by prying down on control arm, and remove axle from spindle. Slide spindle off strut.
  1. Remove transmission cooling lines. The pressure line can be disconnected below the fan shroud where the rubber hose is clamped to the metal line that continues to the radiator. The return line can be disconnected from the stock auxiliary transmission cooler. Be prepared for transmission fluid to leak when hoses are separated. Plug all open lines to prevent contamination and leaks.
  2. Disconnect power steering line running from steering rack to power steering fluid cooler at the cooler. Be prepared for fluid to leak when hose is removed from cooler. Plug all open lines to prevent contamination and leaks.
  3. Disconnect cat-back exhaust from Y-pipe. Use PB Blaster or similar penetrating oil on rusted bolts. Do not lose the metal gasket between flanges.
  4. Remove the transmission cable mount. First, disconnect the cable from the stem by removing nut and slipping cable end off stem. Then, remove two bolts connecting the cable bracket to the rear of the transmission casing and the one nut that secures the bracket to the left (driver) side of the transmission casing. You do not need to remove the cable from the bracket.
  5. Disconnect electrical connection to EVAP module mounted on the firewall right (passenger) side.
  6. Disconnect battery ground lead from the mounting stud located on the left (driver) quarter panel adjacent to the battery.
  7. Disconnect electrical connector from transmission range sensor located on top of transmission casing.
  8. Disconnect battery and alternator leads from distribution box. Lift cover on right (passenger) side of cover and unbolt each of the two leads.
  9. Place suitable jack stands near each corner of the sub frame. Remove four sub frame-to-body bolts. PB Blaster or equivalent should be sprayed through access holes onto sub frame bolt exposed end to help loosen rusted connection.
  10. Raise vehicle slowly, watching and listening for any restrictions or obstructions that may occur.
  11. If it becomes necessary to move the sub frame after it is released from the vehicle, you can realign the sub frame before installation by using weighted strings hung from each sub frame bolt body connection matched to the corresponding sub frame anchor point.
  12. Installation is the reverse of removal. Be sure to align the sub frame before torque'ng the sub frame bolts. See repair manual or V8SHO.com for alignment procedure, or the service CD if you have one.

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