How to Drop a Fuel Tank on a 1988 Ford Mustang

You must drop the fuel tank on your 1988 Ford Mustang in order to replace the electric fuel pump or a damaged tank, or to fix leaks. It's important to follow the correct procedure to prevent an accident or damage to the fuel system. This guide will help you lower, remove and install your tank safely after you have serviced the unit or replaced it with a new one.

Tools Used: Pressure gauge tool T80L-9974-A, Wrench, Hand siphon pump, if necessary, Approved fuel container, if necessary, Floor jack, 2 jack stands, 2 chocks, Phillips screwdriver, if necessary, Ratchet, ratchet extension and socket set, Small wood block, Electric drill, if necessary

Drop a Fuel Tank

Remove the Tank

Connect pressure gauge tool T80L-9974-A to the pressure-relief valve, following the tool manufacturer's instructions, to relieve the fuel pressure. If you have a central fuel injection (CFI) model, this valve is on the throttle body. On electronic fuel injection (EFI) systems, this valve is on the flexible tube or metal line that connects to the fuel rail/injectors assembly. The valve is similar to a tire valve.

Disconnect the ground battery cable on your battery, using a wrench. This is the black cable connected to the post with a minus sign next to it.

Remove as much fuel as possible from the fuel tank using a hand siphon pump, and into an approved fuel container.

Raise the rear of your Mustang using a floor jack, and support it on two jack stands.

Apply the parking brakes, and chock the front wheels.

Detach the fuel filler hose at the tank using a Phillips screwdriver or ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

Support the fuel tank with the floor jack, placing a piece of wood between the tank and the jack to avoid damage to the tank.

Unscrew the tank-straps retaining nuts using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

Lower the fuel tank a few inches so that you can reach and disconnect the fuel lines, vapor line and unplug the fuel pump electrical connector.

Remove the air deflector from the tank straps, if your particular Mustang model is equipped with it. Some deflectors are attached with pop rivets, which can be removed with an electric drill; others can be unscrewed from the fuel tank flange using a ratchet and socket.

Lower the tank to the ground and remove it from the vehicle.

Install the Tank

Set the fuel tank on the floor jack, under the rear of the vehicle, and raise it a few inches.

Install the air deflector. If you had to drill out the pop rivets, replace them with screws and nuts.

Connect the fuel lines, vapor line and plug the fuel pump electrical connector.

Raise the fuel tank into its mounting position, and fasten the tank straps using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

Remove the floor jack from the vehicle.

Attach the fuel filler hose to the tank using the Phillips screwdriver or ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

Lower the Mustang and remove the chocks.

Refill the fuel tank.

Reconnect the ground battery cable using the wrench.

Tips & Warnings

Another method to relieve the fuel system pressure on your 1988 Ford Mustang is to depress the stem inside the pressure relief valve with a small screwdriver as you catch the squirt of fuel with a shop rag. Make sure the engine is completely cool to the t

To avoid a serious accident when working on the fuel system of your Mustang, park the car away from appliances with open flames, like dryers and water heaters.

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