Running a cable through the firewall via the grommet is generally a pretty standard practice, and with my brand new Ford Ranger XLT 2021 I thought this would be a walk in the park. I pushed through the grommet not thinking much of it and ran my cable.
Starting to pack up everything after wiring everything up and testing I moved back onto the grommet, thinking it would be about 5 minutes of work. Boy was I wrong. After two solid days of attempting to getting this back on I finally did it! I write this blog as a warning to fellow Ranger owners not to remove this grommet.
Ford service centre quoted $1000+ to get this on, and with two people working on it for the entire day that's about right.
So why is this so hard to get back on. Well, you have ABS lines directly in front of it. You also have very limited space to move your hand in and around to get any half-decent pressure onto it as well to put it back in.
How to put the grommet back in;
If you have taken this off, first you are in for some very hard work ahead. Prepare yourself for this. Your hands will be cut up and swollen. It's not an easy job to do. Also, you will be taking about 1-2 days working on this solid.
Ford has used a two-piece system containing a rubber grommet itself and a hard plastic behind that with four retention clips that secure to the firewall. With having the rubber grommet over the top of this hard plastic, this is what provides the secure fit.
The trick with this is that you need to first work as much of the top part on first. This is the area you can get to with your hands from the engine bay. I tried to get about 60% of it on leaving the rest off around the bottom and closest to the passenger side. Ideally, if you can get on more the easier it is when you have to move into the cab.
From the cab side, you will need to take out the glove box. There are a couple of forums that have step-to-step guides on how to do this. Once the glove box is out, make your way over to the main harness and push in each retention clip working your way around until your able to push the hard plastic out into the engine bay.
Using your index and thumb you will then need to work your way around rolling the rubber back onto the hard plastic. This is the part that will take you the most time, and cause you the most amount of cuts. Yes, this is a pain, but this is the only way you can do this apart from taking ABS lines out which will cost you also a lot of money.
Eventually, you will work the rubber in place and get it back on. There is no other way that I could find doing this any better, and I also tried a variety of tools.
I thought using pointy nose plyers, pick tools etc would help, but really the only way you can do this properly is by using your hands.
If you are reading this, and are about to embark on this journey, good luck and you will get this back on, just have patience!