Ford Pick-Ups/Expedition/Navigator 1997-2000

Distributor Cap and Rotor



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Fig. Fig. 1 The distributor cap is held to the distributor by retaining clips

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Fig. Fig. 2 The rotor has a locating boss which must be aligned on the distributor

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  3. Label and disconnect the spark plug wires from the distributor cap.

Depending on the reason for removing the distributor cap, it may make more sense to leave the spark plug wires attached. This is handy if you are testing spark plug wires, or if removal is necessary to access other components, and wire length allows you to reposition the cap out of the way.

  1. Detach the two spring clips that secure the cap to the distributor.
  3. Remove the cap from the distributor.

The rotor is press fit onto the distributor shaft.

  1. Pull the rotor straight up to remove.

To install:

  1. Inspect the cap and rotor as described below.
  3. Align the rotor locating boss on the distributor shaft and install by pressing into place.
  5. Align the distributor cap on the distributor and secure the spring clips.
  7. Connect the spark plug wires to their proper terminals.
  9. Connect the negative battery cable.


After removing the distributor cap and rotor, clean the components (both inside and outside of the cap) using soap and water. If compressed air is available, carefully dry the components (wearing safety goggles) or allow the parts to air dry. You can dry them with a clean, soft cloth, but don't leave any lint or moisture behind.

Once the cap and rotor have been thoroughly cleaned, check for cracks, carbon tracks, burns or other physical damage. Make sure the distributor cap's center button is free of damage. Check the cap terminals for dirt or corrosion. Always check the rotor blade and spring closely for damage. Replace any components where damage is found.

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Fig. Fig. 3 Inspection points for the distributor cap

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Fig. Fig. 4 Inspection points for the distributor rotor