How To Install MRT Hood Struts On 2010 & Up Ford Mustangs

MRT’s hood struts are one of the most useful mods you can do to your Ford Mustang. The stock prop rod is cheap & flimsy & doesn’t belong on a car like the Mustang. Many new luxury & performance cars come with hood strut systems from the factory, this simple mod will make opening your hood easier and quicker, a useful tool for those who work on their Mustangs on a regular basis. You can find this black MRT Hood Strut Kit on StangMods by clicking the following link: MRT Black Hood Strut Kit

For this install you will need a couple of tools. They are:  a 10mm socket wrench, razor cutter or scissors, flat head screwdriver, extra set of hands to help support the hood when adding the strut brackets.

Start by locating the fender bolt closest to the hood of the car, remove this 10mm bolt, place the lower bracket there & tighten it down. The RH side is the passenger side, LH is the drivers side. Each bracket in the kit is engraved with either RH or LH.

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After the lower brackets are in place it’s time to install the upper brackets. You may want to grab a friend to help with this step. Remove the upper 10mm bolt and LOOSTEN the lower one just enough to slide the braket under the head of the lower bolt. Reinstall the upper bolt once the lower part of the bracket is fastened by the lower bolt.

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Once the brackets on both sides of the hood/vehicle are installed and tightened, install the struts! You can now ditch the prop rod for good, you can even unbolt it’s bracket & throw it in the trash, up to you!

The steps above complete the install process on 05-09 Mustangs. If you have a 2010 and newer model you’ll need to modify the sound tube located on the driver’s side. This is required to give the hood strut clearance.

Start by removing the lower rubber bushing under the plastic bracket. There is a small metal guide for the bolt pressed through this bushing, you can remove it with a flathead screwdriver Do not throw this away as it will be reused. Once the rubber bracket has been removed, cut about half an inch out of the center of the rubber bushing as marked by the red lines in the photo below.

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After you’ve cut the bushing install everything backwards like shown below. The U clip that the bolt originally threaded into must be installed on the bottom of all of this.

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Once everything is lined up, bolt it down like shown below. All done!

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Now you have an attractive, useful mod that’ll give you more clearance while providing a nice visual upgrade . For more information on MRT’s Hood Strut Kits, follow this link: http://www.stangmods.com/MRT-Hood-Struts-05-13-Mustangs-p/00109.htm

K&N Performance Filters – Installing One In Your Mustang

Since adding K&N’s full line of intake products on our store – Click Here For Our Full Selection – we decided to give one of them a try on our 93 LX project car. We opted for a large filter unit that replaces the stock airbox and rubber piping. The install was very straight forward and took only a few hand tools. Install took no more than 45 minutes to complete.

K&N filters are special because of their high flow characteristics and their superior engine protection. By using an oiled element they are able to trap the most dirt and dust compared to a factory paper filter or a standard replacement filter. Not only do they flow and filter better, but they are completely re-usable and will last the life of your vehicle’s engine. By using K&N’s Filter Recharge Kit you can clean and re-oil your filter back to new. They recommend you clean your filter every 20,000 miles to ensure the best protection and performance. After several years and a hundred thousand miles, the K&N filters practically pay for themselves. You actually CAN save money while gaining performance, reliability & economy…who woulda thought? Now on to the install for foxbody Mustangs:
Tools Needed:

1/4″ Drill

12mm socket

11mm wrench

Flathead screwdriver

Start off by removing the two 12mm nuts that hold the factory airbox to the engine bay.

Next, remove the clamp below the MAF sensor using a flathead screwdriver.

Once the clamp is removed, pull the factory intake assembly out of the engine bay.

Once the airbox is removed, you will need to use your 1/4″ drill bit to slightly enlarge a hole for the K&N filter’s bracket mounting position.

Once the bracket bolt fits through the hole, fit the bracket in place and tighten it. You will have to reach under the bumper to tighten the nut from the bottom of the bolt.

Once the bracket is in place and is snug, it’s time to install the new filter. Get the filter in place and make sure the threads on the end of the filter fit inside the bracket. Tighten the 11mm nut on the end of the filter.

Next tighten the hose clamp at the filter opening to ensure there will be no air leakage.

That’s it! You’re done! Below are two photos comparing the factory intake and the new K&N filter.

Installing A Billet Aluminum Shorty Antenna On Your 2010-2013 Mustang

Even though they improved the look of the antennas on 2010 and up Mustangs by moving it to the rear quarter panel, it’s still too tall and looks kinda silly on the Mustang’s new sleek body. We have an affordable solution that will improve the look of the antenna while retaining radio signal and functionality. Our 4″ billet aluminum antennas come with all hardware and tools needed for the installation. Install takes about 20 minutes. View our shorty antennas here: Shorty Antennas at Stangmods.com
Tools Needed:

Pliers (optional)

Start off by unscrewing the factory antenna, it should twist off easily.

After removing the stock antenna, use the included tool to unscrew the piece that holds the stock base to the car. Ours was too tight to remove by hand but came loose easily with a set of pliers.

Once the metal part that holds the stock base is removed, the base should come right off. You will be re-using this part to mount the new billet base so make sure not to misplace it.

Reinstall the new billet base and screw the factory metal piece in using the included tool to secure the base of the new antenna. Do not over tighten this, just enough so the base doesn’t move around. Over tightening could damage your paint.

Once the base is secured, screw one end of the threaded pin into the antenna itself. Once this is tight, install the upper base piece and screw the antenna in through the base. Make sure this is tight enough that the upper part of the base does not spin freely.

That’s it, all done! The install is a breeze and the shorty antenna looks much better than the factory mast. Thanks for reading! You can find this part on our store in either powdercoated black like the one shown here, brushed aluminum or chrome. This antenna will fit all 2010-2013 Mustangs.

Changing Out Your 2013 Mustang’s Hood Vents

One of the most exciting changes on the new 2013 Mustang line are the new hood vents that come standard on the GT & Boss 302 Mustangs. These fully functional vents allow the engine bay to run a bit cooler which in turn improve intake temps and ultimately improve power and efficiency. Plus, they look plain awesome. Changing the vents to black or any other color is a breeze since these vents are easily removed with a deep 8mm socket and by un-clipping them from the hood. Follow along below to see how it’s done in a few easy steps.

We sell the factory OEM Ford vents on our site unpainted, these are great for someone who wants to paint them a custom color themselves. You can find them here: http://www.stangmods.com/2013-Mustang-OEM-Hood-Vents-sold-in-pairs-p/2303.htm
Tools Needed:

8mm deep socket

Ratcheting socket wrench

Start by removing all of the clips holding the under-hood insulation on. Leave the bottom row attached, as you just need to remove enough to get to the bolts and clips holding the vents on.

Next, remove the 8mm nuts on the bottom of each vent. On the passenger side, remove the plastic clip holding the washer fluid line in place.

Once the nuts are removed, squeeze the clips on either side of the vents and push upwards, use your other hand to pull gently from the top side of the hood to free the vents from the hood itself. Do not use too much force, patience is key here.

Once the vents are free of all their clips, they will easily come free of the hood. Reinstalling the new vents is just the reverse of the steps above. Make sure you get all the clips snug when installing the new vents and remember to reinstall the 8mm nuts on the bottom of the vents as well as the washer line on the passenger side vent.

Here are photos of the factory painted vents and the new vents we installed (factory unpainted). In the next few weeks we will be posting new vent finishes including matte black and carbon fiber. Stay tuned!

Installing An Axle-Back Exhaust On The 2011-2013 Ford Mustang GT

For our second modification on our new project car we decided to try out Borla’s Atak axle-back exhaust system. Borla is one of the biggest names in domestic performance exhaust and it’s easy to see why when looking at the build quality and fit & finish on their systems. Their sturdy, lightweight construction is superb, and more importantly, the sound they produce is nothing short of stellar. Being an axle-back system we were expecting a mild sound, however this system really screams. Not in a bad way though, it really suits the new 5.0 very well. There is no rasp whatsoever, just a deep, powerful tone that screams Mustang 5 liter power! Even better than the sound when you’re on the throttle is the gurgling and popping you get when decelerating in gear. This axle-back is perfect for someone looking for a nice grunt on throttle, an aggressive deceleration pop and gurgle and when you’re just cruising around it’s very composed. Nothing that will annoy your neighbors or Johnny Law. Now on to the install guide. It took us about 2 hours to do the install with the car on jack stands. Please note that this guide is based on the new 2013 Mustang and the process may slightly differ from 2011 and 2012 GTs.

Tools Required:

13mm Socket

Socket Extension

Ratcheting Socket Wrench

The first step is to jack up the rear of the car and secure the rear of the car on jack stands. Never work under a car with a floor jack, always be sure to use jack stands and shake the car to make sure it’s safe to work under it.

After the car is safely in the air, the first bolt to remove is the bolt on the exhaust clamp that holds on the rear mufflers. This clamp will be re-used on the new axle-back system so be sure not to damage it. Once you remove the clamp bolt, be sure to retain all the factory hardware and set it aside so it can be used when installing the clamp on the new system. The clamp is welded to the stock system by a small tab that we will remove when the muffler is off the car.

Next, remove the muffler hangar from just behind the rear bumper.

Next, there are two bolts holding the hangars at the rear of the muffler tot he underside of the car. This bracket must be removed from the car and re-used on the new system. The image below shows the location of the 13mm bolts that hold the bracket to the underside of the Mustang.

Be sure to support the muffler when removing this bracket, once it is remove the mufflers will drop from under the car. We learned this the hard way! The photo below shows the passenger side muffler removed with the hangar bracket attached.

Follow the same steps on the driver’s side muffler. Remove the clamp hardware first and then the hangar right behind the rear bumper.

The driver’s side muffler has a slightly different hangar design, instead of using two 13mm bolts it uses three. After removing the three bolts in the locations shown below, the muffler will drop from under the car.

Below is a comparison of the stock muffler next to Borla’s Atak axle-back muffler. Notice how much smaller the Borla muffler is and the larger tip. It’s a fantastic looking system that fills the rear opening better as well as saves weight over the stock mufflers.

Now that both mufflers have been removed, it’s time to transfer the necessary hardware to install the new system. First remove the factory clamps from the stock mufflers. They are welded on by thin metal tabs. We simply moved them back and forth (sort of like breaking a paper-clip) until they broke free from the tabs.

The next step is to remove the hangar brackets and install them on the new mufflers. Make sure you install them in the correct orientation or the exhaust won’t bolt up properly.

Now you’re ready to bolt the new system under the car. Start by slipping the new hangar into the hangar bushing behind the rear bumper. After that’s in, bolt the hangar bracket at the back of the muffler to the underside of the car just as you removed it. Once all the hangars are in, simply reinstall the factory clamp and tighten it to complete the installation. Make sure the clamp is on straight to avoid an exhaust leak.

Repeat these steps for both sides and you’re done! Now it’s time to enjoy the new sound! The photos below show how the Borla Atak mufflers look from behind. Great fit and finish for an aftermarket system.

In conclusion, we definitely recommend replacing the rear mufflers on the new 5.0. From the factory they already sound good, but in order to really give the car that signature Mustang sound you can’t go wrong with an axle-back system. Not only are they affordable, they don’t make the car too loud. If you’re looking for something low key that will still turn heads, look great, not void your warranty and please your ears, you can’t go wrong with the Borla Atak axle-back system for the 2011-2013 5.0. You can find this system on our store by clicking the following link: Borla Atak Axle-Back Exhaust System for 2011-2013 GT & Boss 302

Installing StangMods 99-04 Vinyl Tail Light Decals

Mustang Tail Light Decal Installation (Flamed, Outline & Honeycomb Kits)

Tools Required:

  • Squeeggee
  • Spray bottle
  • Liquid soap
  • Terry cloth or towel

Use rubbing alcohol to wash all dirt and road grime from the surface of your tail lights.

Mix your soapy water solution by adding a few drops of liquid soap to warm water in a spray bottle.

Generously spray the solution over the lens you are working on. Then remove the vinyl decal from the paper backing and apply it to the lens.

While the solution is still saturating the tail light lens, align the decal for a correct fitment and use your squeeggee to remove any excess solution from underneath the decal. Start from the center and move your way out.

Wait a few minutes, depending on the temperature, and then try to remove the transfer tape (top protective paper) from the vinyl. If the paper comes off and the vinyl stays in place, then you are good to go and you can move on to the next one. If the vinyl comes off, rather than staying on the car then use your squeege to apply the decal over the lens again.

Finish up by wiping off any excess solution from the body of your Stang.

Visit StangMods for more Mustang vinyl decals

Installing StangMods’ Vinyl Lower Bumper Insert for 99-04

 

Mustang Vinyl Lower Rear Bumper Insert Installation

 Tools Required:

  • Squeeggee
  • Spray bottle
  • Liquid soap
  • Terry cloth or towel

First start off by making your soapy solution by combining three to four drops of dishwashing detergent with warm water

Next, you’ll want to thouroughly clean and prep the area for instalaltion. Use alcohol to clean any dirt or debris from the lower bumper area.

Once everything is nice and dry, you’ll now be ready for installation. Peel off the backing of the vinyl overlay. Be careful not to let it touch any surface other than the vehicle.

Spray the soapy solution over the entire lower bumper area.

Align the vinyl in place and use a squeegee to apply it to the vehicle.  Work from the center of the vinyl to the edges, slowly pushing any air bubbles and excess solution out from under the decal. It may take a few minutes until the vinyl begins to adhere to the vehicle.

Finish up by wiping off any excess solution from the body of your Stang.

Visit StangMods for more vinyl Mustang decals.