In part two of our maintenance work up on the wagon, we replace the vacuum lines, as well as the PVC system. We also replaced the coil pack and the spark plug feeds to complete the ignition refresh from our earlier write up. The level of difficulty for the PVC system and vacuum lines is relatively easy as the bulk of the work occurs at the top of the engine. However there are one or two tricky items during the process. While replacing these old and brittle parts we also replaced several related components such as the check valve and suction pump for the PVC. We also replaced fittings and the check valve for the vacuum line system as well. We started we the easiest parts, the coil pack and plug wires. The wires themselves simply pull out of the spark plug wells. Once these wires have been disconnected, the coil pack can be removed. To do this, we used a 10mm socket and pulled the four bolts holding it in place. Then we removed the ground nut and the harness plug. Once the old unit was out, wires and all, we reinstalled the new part. We left the wires off to make the job easier, however it can be done either way. After securing the pack to the engine, we proceeded to install the new spark plug wires. Each wire is a specific length and corresponds to a specific cylinder. The wires on the nicer kits are labeled as well as the coil pack and valve covers. Just match the numbers, plug them in, and the install is finished.
The next item on the list was the PVC hose system. This hard plastic system transfers excess oil and blow back out of the valve covers. Over time the PVC can break down from high heat and stress. We started by disconnecting the pinch style connections from valve covers. Next we removed the suction pump and its connection. The hardest part of this job is getting to the final connection at the back center of the engine under the throttle body. In order to do this, we had to remove the MAF sensor, the duct work to the throttle body and the top plate holding all the valves and lines in place. The top plate has two obvious bolts holding it in place, while the TB duct has a two bolts in less obvious places. The first is at the top and easy to reach, the second is at the lower bottom right side. This bolt can be difficult to take out without a 1/4th drive ratchet. Once we could get our hands back behind the engine, we used a set of channel locks to remove the old connection. The install is opposite of removal. The vacuum lines are the easiest, as the engine has a diagram on the hood indicating where they all go. There are a lot of hose clamps that will need to be loosened, however there are almost no hard connections. Everything should slip right off, once the hose clamps are free. Then it’s a simple matter of replacing the old lines with the new ones, as well as the new check valve. (In our case it was blue) With all of these systems refreshed, the car was buttoned by up, and the difference in idle and performance was noticeable. We have included a few pictures of the action below, as well as few links to the DIYs that can help you get started. Happy wrenching!
– CA Staff