Fuel Filter Replacement
Your Thunderbird is equipped with a fuel filter. Its purpose is to trap any impurities in the gas which would clog your carburetor if they were allowed to reach it. The fuel filter for your Thunderbird is located inside a glass bowl which is positioned in your fuel line directly above your fuel pump. The fuel pump and filter are located on the driver's side of the engine compartment at the front of the engine. To ensure that your car's fuel system is working properly, it is important to make sure that you change your fuel filter with some regularity. You do not need to change it as often as your oil filter, but if you don't remember when you last changed your fuel filter I it's probably time to change it.
When changing your fuel filter you will be working with gasoline. Please use caution!!
The following tip is intended to make changing the fuel filter easier and also aid in reducing the chances of creating a gas leak due to an improper fit of the filter gasket.
The first step is to make sure that your car is on level ground and not running. Make sure you have a new fuel filter and also the rubber gasket for the glass bowl. The gasket should come with the new fuel filter. Now find the glass bowl. The glass bowl is held in place by a wire harness with a wing nut at its base. By loosening the wing nut at the base of the glass bowl, you can push the wire harness over to one side and remove the glass bowl from the fuel filter housing. Be careful to catch any gas that may spill. Next, loosen the two brass gas line fittings which connect the fuel filter housing on both sides to the fuel lines. You will need a 1/2" and 9/16" wrench. Loosen the 1/2" fittings enough to allow you to swing the filter housing upside down so that the fuel filter element will be facing up, directly at you. Once you have rotated the filter housing, remove the fuel filter. If your gasket did not come off when you removed your glass bowl, remove the old gasket now. Install the new gasket being careful not to fold or kink it. Make sure it fits evenly in the recessed channel of the filter housing. Next install your new fuel filter. Your old filter should have been installed with the paper side towards the fuel filter housing. Make sure your new filter is installed the same way. Reinstall the glass bowl and place the wire harness back in its original position around the glass bowl. Tighten up the wing nut so that the glass bowl fits snugly into the fuel filter housing. Make sure your gasket did not shift out of the channel in the filter housing. Once you are satisfied that all is well, turn the filter housing, with the glass bowl attached, back into its original position so that the glass bowl is underneath the filter housing. Now retighten the brass gas line fittings on both sides. Start your car up and check for leaks.
This tip is simple, but for all of you out there, who tried to change the fuel filter without rotating the housing, it sure makes the job easier!