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Old 12-06-2014, 08:09 PM   #1
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Maintenance/Mod Recommendations for 2002 GT

Hello all, as a first point, I should point out that I am not very mechanically inclined but I am very interested in learning everything as I go. My budget is not very big, as I am working a minimum wage job putting myself through college. I picked up a 2002 mustang GT with everything stock and 90k miles on it. Interior was meticulously maintained, but the outside needs some work. I need to clean off an old clear bra and buff off the adhesive, have the roof and spoiler repainted, and get a new wiper cowl/wiper arms. So far the only upgrade I have made is raxiom LED headlights, which were pretty easy to install. Also had an aftermarket stereo installed. I am wondering first, what should I have checked/done to the car to make sure nothing is wrong, as preventative maintenance? Given the mileage, and my rather limited budget (about $30 a week for car items) what should I save up for first?
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Old 12-06-2014, 09:24 PM   #2
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First, IMMEDIATELY drain the trans fluid and re-fill with 3.2 quarts of Pennzoil Synrchomesh. 01-04 manual trans cars (assuming you have a manual) were overfilled from the factory and it caused all sorts of issues. If your trans has never had a fluid change it could still be at that factory level. Even if it has, people are dumb and might still overfilled. Next would just be a good oil change, rear diff fluid and basic maintenance stuffs. I've been where you are at as far as a job and a Mustang. Just enjoy the nice ride you have and drive it and work towards a better job and then the toys will come. Being car poor sucks and is really not a good idea. Like I said, I've been there.
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Old 12-07-2014, 07:27 AM   #3
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Thanks for your reply, I know, it does suck being poor but in a couple years (unless law school destroys my bank account and postpones that a little longer) ill have enough money for a newer 5.0 that I can actually play with, I get giddy just thinking about that. Anyways, could you point me to a good guide on how to chance trans fluid, rear diff fluid, and oil? At this mileage, what would be expected first to go? Should I just have a mechanic shop take a thorough look at it?
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Old 12-07-2014, 10:31 AM   #4
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For the trans, you just remove the shifter, go under the car, remove the drain plug, let it drain, put plug back in (thin coat of black rtv on the plug and do NOT overtighten or you can crack the case), and then dump 3.2 quarts of synchromesh in through the shifter and re install the shifter.

Shifter removal takes 10 minutes. An aftermarket shifter is nice too but with a 01-04 you don't NEED to get one since those years have internal stops.

Oil and diff changes are just the same as on most cars. You can look up guides on this via google honestly but myself and others can walk you through almost anything on these cars. I would not waste money taking it to a shop especially if its running OK.

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Old 12-07-2014, 10:32 AM   #5
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And also, your idea of getting a new 5.0 when you graduate and get a good job, that is the smartest thing you can do IMO. Save your extra $$$ now to keep your new edge running right and enjoy having a nicer ride than most poor college kids lol.

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Old 12-07-2014, 10:36 AM   #6
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Maintenance/Mod Recommendations for 2002 GT

I wouldn't bother with a mechanic if nothing is wrong with it. It will probably need new plugs and all that tune up stuff. 100k seems to be the mileage things start to need replace. Alts can go then... The tuneup stuff will need replaced. There's too much to really say everything. Just keep an open eye/ear on your car and make your if you see signs of wear, to ask or take to mechanic and fix it. Some things will need fixed right away.. Some won't. New 5.0 would be sweet. It's too bad life gets in the way a lot and eats some of your savings as you go.. I learned this the hard way

Being a poor college kid sucks but they say these are the best years of your life.. Enjoy them. Toys will come after graduation and promotions.

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Old 12-07-2014, 10:47 AM   #7
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Basic maintenance until you can afford a new 5.0. Go with autolite 103 plugs and keep OEM coils if nothing is wrong with them. And Scotty will tell you to use a torque wrench or buy one if you don't own one lol. You'll blow a spark plug out if over tighten.

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Old 12-07-2014, 12:32 PM   #8
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I have noticed when I start the car, sometimes it will try to start and not quite turn over, like its making the start sound but cant quite get the engine on, then i let it rest for 5-10 secs and it starts right up. Any ideas what that could be?

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Old 12-07-2014, 02:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexervin239 View Post
I have noticed when I start the car, sometimes it will try to start and not quite turn over, like its making the start sound but cant quite get the engine on, then i let it rest for 5-10 secs and it starts right up. Any ideas what that could be?

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Camshaft or crankshaft position sensor. You will need a puller to do the crank sensor in the OEM location IIRC. Not going to hurt it if you just let it go like it is now honestly.

And yes for plugs and coils, you can rebuild the stock coils for $30 vs paying $300 for new ones (never buy aftermarket coils) and you will require a torque wrench to correctly do plugs on this motor. They strip REAL easy and the torque on them is not very much. Plugs and coils are usually done at 100k.
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Old 12-07-2014, 04:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottydsntknow View Post
Camshaft or crankshaft position sensor. You will need a puller to do the crank sensor in the OEM location IIRC. Not going to hurt it if you just let it go like it is now honestly.

And yes for plugs and coils, you can rebuild the stock coils for $30 vs paying $300 for new ones (never buy aftermarket coils) and you will require a torque wrench to correctly do plugs on this motor. They strip REAL easy and the torque on them is not very much. Plugs and coils are usually done at 100k.
How do you go about rebuilding the coils?

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Old 12-07-2014, 05:24 PM   #11
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You get a $30 rebuild kit off amazon or rockauto. Pull the boot off, pull the spring out, snap a new spring in and put a new boot on. That is literally it. Just did this for my Expy.
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Old 12-07-2014, 06:05 PM   #12
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Ooooh those, okay. I akmost did that when I worked at advance. Autolite makes em. But it ends up being like 45 bucks if you buy em individually there.

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Old 12-07-2014, 07:10 PM   #13
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Its about $30 shipped from Amazon or Rockauto.







That is literally it. The electronic portion of the COP rarely fails. More often its a boogered up boot or the spring is shot to hell. Half of my springs had rust spots on them and one of my boots was falling apart as well as I found one non-OEM cop on #8 which was probably one of the things causing a miss I was having.
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Old 12-07-2014, 07:10 PM   #14
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Its about $30 shipped from Amazon or Rockauto.







That is literally it. The electronic portion of the COP rarely fails. More often its a boogered up boot or the spring is shot to hell. Half of my springs had rust spots on them and one of my boots was falling apart as well as I found one non-OEM cop on #8 which was probably one of the things causing a miss I was having.
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