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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Engine mount replacement for dummies

I spent my day on Sunday replacing the very sagged engine mounts in my 88 Graduate. I like to refer to myself as mechanically challenged, but was fortunate enough to have the assistance of a friend of mine who is a master mechanic. Insteady of him simply doing the job, he worked with me and showed me how to do the job.

I know there are other threads on replacing engine mounts, but I thought that by starting this thread on how I replaced the mounts, it may help someone else in the future when they decide to do this job themselves. I had been qouted $550 to have the mounts replaced.


Goal

My goal was to change the engine mounts without having to remove any of the intake system. My thought behind this was "if you dont touch it, you dont break it". Based on my mechanical history, I felt this was a smart choice

Tools needed
2 Jackstands, a descent hydraulic jack, Peice of wood 2"x4"x2', 13mm, 10mm, 11mm, 17mm socket, 13mm ring wrench, flat screwdriver, flashlight

Preparation
Start by jacking the car up fairly high. I placed the jackstands on the 2 jack points just behind the front wheels that the standard Alfa jack uses to lift the car, and 2 jackstands on the frame. Dont be shy about getting the car up high. You will be spending a fair amount of time under the car so a little extra space comes in handy,

Time to get down to business
Start by removing the oil pan guard if you have one. Mine had 4 13mm bolts that were easily removed with the socket.

While you are still inder the car, you should remove the 2 bottom nuts with the 10mm socket from the fan shroud. Jump to the top of the car and remove the 2 top nuts also. The fan shroud will slip backward fully exposing the fan blades. If you dont do this, you risk damaging the shroud from the fan blades putting pressure on it when you raise the engine.

Also remove the strap that holds on the radiator filler bottle. This is on the passenger side of the car at the front and a simple screwdriver loosens the strap. Lift the bottle up (carefully since there is a pipe attached to it) and place it the correct way up on the top of the engine. Hey if you look down you can see the dreaded passenger side engine mount.

Now to get to the mounts themselves

Driver Side mount
I started with the drivers side mount since I had to build up my courage and thought it good to tackle the easier one first. Place the piece of wood accros the entire oil pan and place the hydraulic jack off to the drivers side of the piece of wood, but dont start to lift the engine yet. Placing the jack off to one side will help lift maily on the side of the engine that you are changing the mount on.
Take a good look at the new mount_ _ _ you will get a good idea on where the botls etc go.
From the top of the car, you can access 2 of the 3 nuts that attach the mount to the engine block and 1 of the 2 bolts that attach the mount to the cars frame. You need to go underneath the car to undo the other 1 nut and bolt. I used the 13mm ring wrench to undo all these nuts and bolts since ratchet access was somewhat limited.
So now the engine mount is loose and held in place by the engines weight. Slowly start to lift the engine with the jack. Remember that when you are lifting the engine you not only have to take the old squashed mount out, but put the new not so squashed mount back in. Dont be shy, lift it . Mine lifted about 2 - 3" I guess.
Once the engine is up, simply pull of the old mount and slide the new one over the 3 studs that are attached to the engine block. This is pretty straightforward and you will see what I mean when you do it. Put the 3 nuts back on and insert the 2 bolts back into their respective holes. (you may need to lower the engine slightly to allign the bolts to the frame with their holes. Finger tighten the nuts and bolts at this time and lower the engine back down.

You have just replaced the your first Alfa Spider engine mount. Time to celebrate since you think you are are halfway there and it only took about 20 min. :D Whooooooa not so fast !!! the fun part is yet to come.

Passenger Side mount
This is the one that removes skin from your knuckles.

Bear with me as I try to explain this. Take a look at the mount on the car from the top. You will see there is a nasty looking bracket that goes up from the mount to the underside of the intake manifold and stuff. There is a 13mm nut and bolt that you have to remove that holds the intake bracket to the engine mount. Its a little tight to work in there since this is removed from the top of the car, but I was able to get in there are remove the nut and bolt with the 13mm socket.
Now get back under the car.... There are 6 bolts attaching the bracket to the intake that you need to loosen from underneath the car with a loooong extension on your ratchet. Good time to break out that flashlight so you can see what you are doing. As I recall you we a 10mm and 17mm socket here. Sounds difficult, bit it wasnt that bad. The bracket should now be loose, but you cant actually take it out yet since the intake and the engine mount keep it roughly in place.
Now this could be a good time to debate the merits of removing the intake system and giving yourself more room to work. Great for some of my more mechanical fellow Spider owners, but as I said I am mechanically challenged and the thought of removing the throttle linkage and all that intake stuff was tooooo much for me. "If I dont touch it... I cant break it". :)

Back to work.. So you have the bracket loose. Now go to the nuts and bolts on the mount itself. Same as the other side. You use the 13mm ring wrench and remove 2 of the 3 nuts and 1 of the 2 bolts that attach the mount to the frame from the top and remove the other nut and bolt from below. Not as easy as the driver side since space is limited, but it can be done with small turns on your wrench.

Once you have the nuts and bolts off, its back to the jack time.. The wood stays across the entire oil pan and you place the jack closer to the passenger side of the oil pan. Slowly start to lift the engine again till you can remove the old engine mount out. Again.. My engine lifted about 2 -3", but you will have to judge that for yourself.
Back to the top of the car. The tricky part here is to get the mount off the 3 studs since that darned braket is in the way and snug up against the underside of the intake. A second pair of hands comes in really usefull about now to help manouver that bracket and I must confess to using the screwdriver as a sort of lever to get the mount off the studs. Now I dont mean pick up a crowbar and go nuts here, but a little subtle pressure helped a whole bunch since as I said the space is pretty limited down there. Once the mount was clear of the studs , I rolled it counter clockwise from the top of the car and pulled down to get the bracket out of the mount. 1 now unattached mount can be removed from the car.
For those so inclined, this would be a good time for a break for a cold beverage of your choice :D

Putting the new mount in is actually easier than taking the old mount out. Position the mount with the backet between the 2 lips and move it into position over the 3 studs attached to the engine block. You will understand what I mean when you do this. Nuts onto the 3 studs and the 2 bolts into the car frame. Remember you may need to lower the jack a bit to get the bolts lined up. Key her is to make small slow changes and that second pair of hands comes in really handy here. Once you have the bolts lined up and finger tightened, keep the jack in place. You may have difficulty getting the wrench onto one of the lower bolts it you remove the jack at this point.
Tighten the nuts and bolts on the mount and bolt the intake bracket back into place first from under the car to the underside of the intake (remember those 6 bolts) and then finally the bolt from the bracket to the engine mount. Tighten everything up to spec.

NOW you can remove the jack completely now.

Go to the drivers side and tighten down the nuts and bolts on the mount to spec. Replace the fan shroud and get that radiator bottle back in. Back under the car for last look around to see that everything is tight and looks good. Then you can replace the oil pan guard.

Now look at that for some clearance :D :D :D :D

So the whole job took me about 3 hours to complete and while some may find fault in the method or process that I used... it worked for this mechanical dummy. This is meant only as a guide on how I changed the mounts, and if we are lucky, some of our more mechanical fellow Alfa owners will add their input to this thread and provide a solid instruction base for a mechanical dummy like me trying to change their own engine mounts. Remeber to always use common sense and safety. I hope this helps someone in the future
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Chris.

A box wrench is what it is. Please excuse my foreign background. It was hard enough for me not to call it a "spanner" :D

Where I come from all wrenches are spanners
cheers
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Mark.
My 88 has the A/C and I didnt have to remove it to do the job.

As I said, my goal was to replace the mounts without touching anything that I could break. :D

You mention that you have to replace the passenger mount. I would highly recommend changing both mounts. They are relatively inexpensive and the difference I feel when driving my car is remarkable. Plus I would not like to come back around and have to do the other mount at a later date.

Good luck with the job

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Just finished mine - ALMOST. the Spruell mounts are in. I had to remove the intake partially, I say partially because I could not unscrew the braket. there was a small ground wire from the intake to the block that I could not take off. In any case it was a B*tch to do. I lost the 10mm small bolt that attaches the bracket to the head, I can't remember what it looks like or where I put it. Also I can't align the fuel rail rubber mount to screw it back in. The car is put together except for these two items. I started it up, and the engine does not shake as before.
Frankly I don't see how I could have done it without removing the intake, there is just not enough room in there.
I never said it was easy :D, but I did mine without removing any of the intake.

Word of wisdom to the not so mechanically inclined .."If you dont touch it, you cant break it"
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 · (Edited)
Success! Mounts replaced, radiator replaced... road test around midnight... all seems well. Thanks to all that helped. Dave thanks for the help via phone as well, especially when I thought I was losing my mind in regards to that one last bolt. Ended using the wife's help, what trooper, but she was able to reach down and get the box wrench around the last nut... between that and having put pressure back onto the engine via my jack... giving her the room to get the wrench around the thing... all worked out.

Thanks again folks.

Well done Ron.. Glad to be able to help. Not an easy job, but definitely something event the mechanically challenged can do and save some cash.

I made a small edit to the original post to make sure people dont remove the jack prematurely and limit the space needed to get a wrench on to the bolts on the passenger side mount. All nuts and bolts where tightened before I removed the jack.

cheers
Dave
 
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