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As blacksid says, removing the intake manifold on the 2.4 is very straightforward and opens up a ton of space. A magnetic socket helps with getting the nuts off of the studs on the head, but isn't really necessary.

Getting the intake manifold off of the 2.0L is a chore. One of those little areas where the engines are very different. Whoever designed the manifold for the LNF clearly hated the world.
 

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2006 Solstice 2.4L
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Discussion Starter #22
Had to tighten the bolts on the eng/trans as mine were loose. Found that a cut down 18m deep socket with a short extension and a small head ratchet worked on the 2 top bolts.( socket cut to 2 1/2 ", not sure of extension length.) tightening the one above the starter took several different wrenches and was a chore.
Went looking for a vacuum leak at a later date and removed the intake. The easy-es job i've found on this engine. With the intake out of the way you can get to the starter and that bell housing bolt above it.
Some times a screw jack or block of wood can be put between the engine and fire wall to stop the back of the engine from lowering too far and stressing the motor mounts.
Hope this helps and have fun with your project
Yeah yikes. I’m worried about this part. Got this car from my uncle in Michigan where the salt on the roads got up in every little nook and cranny. The intake manifold bolts seem very rusted through and I’m worried their heads are gonna snap off when I try to pull it out. I already have to figure out how to get the snapped bolts that held the exhaust to the cat out. Used lubricant on them but they were just so far rusted there wasn’t a chance. And thanks for the tip on keeping the stress of motor mounts with a screw jack/wood.

I haven’t even gotten the starter out after hearing it’s not neccessary to remove the trans - but now that I’m hearing about the upper transmission bolt hidden away behind the starter, I’m not so sure.

To quote someone on this guide that is saving my ass:
“There is a less time consuming way to get the transmission bolt out that's above the starter. It's been a while since I did it but I've done a trans drop on our cars 3 times now. I believe it was like 5 extensions of differnt Sizies with swivels between them and you snake it from in front of the front wheel driver side though up to the starter. I used a rachet to loosen it then an impact driver to spin it off. Took me about 15 min to get it.”

Curious if anyone here has attempted this method?
 

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2006 Solstice 2.4L
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Discussion Starter #23
As blacksid says, removing the intake manifold on the 2.4 is very straightforward and opens up a ton of space. A magnetic socket helps with getting the nuts off of the studs on the head, but isn't really necessary.

Getting the intake manifold off of the 2.0L is a chore. One of those little areas where the engines are very different. Whoever designed the manifold for the LNF clearly hated the world.
I’ll look in to it. Guess I’m actually glad I have the N/A solstice! Still really concerned with how rusted those bolts are though. Idk how I’m gonna get the screw shafts out of the engine if the bolt head snaps off.
 

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What penetrating oil are you using? Liquid Wrench, Kroil, and Pb Blaster are favorites of different friends and I have used all of them with varying degrees of success. Some of the old guys that worked at the shipyard even used Coca-Cola and orange juice to free up corroded parts, but I have never tried that at home.
 

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The head is aluminum and the manifold is composite. The bolts shouldn't be seized, even if the bolts themselves are rusted.

In a pinch, hit the bolts with a torch ($20 Home Depot version works fine) for a bit. LET THEM COOL OFF. Once they're cool enough to touch, they should come right out. The expansion and contraction of the bolt will loosen up the rust. Just don't use an impact and you should be fine. Also be careful not to melt the manifold.

If you do manage to snap the head off, there's about 1cm of bolt that sticks out of the block through the manifold. Plenty to get a tool on to remove them, though it takes some time.

The manifold nuts and bolts (technically "screws" but no one calls them that) are only torqued to something like 15#. I've pulled the 2.4 manifold a number of times and never had an issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
What penetrating oil are you using? Liquid Wrench, Kroil, and Pb Blaster are favorites of different friends and I have used all of them with varying degrees of success. Some of the old guys that worked at the shipyard even used Coca-Cola and orange juice to free up corroded parts, but I have never tried that at home.
An old can of liquid wrench my friend had lying around.

The head is aluminum and the manifold is composite. The bolts shouldn't be seized, even if the bolts themselves are rusted.

In a pinch, hit the bolts with a torch ($20 Home Depot version works fine) for a bit. LET THEM COOL OFF. Once they're cool enough to touch, they should come right out. The expansion and contraction of the bolt will loosen up the rust. Just don't use an impact and you should be fine. Also be careful not to melt the manifold.

If you do manage to snap the head off, there's about 1cm of bolt that sticks out of the block through the manifold. Plenty to get a tool on to remove them, though it takes some time.

The manifold nuts and bolts (technically "screws" but no one calls them that) are only torqued to something like 15#. I've pulled the 2.4 manifold a number of times and never had an issue.
Good to know, I'll probably have to do this. A little worried about melting the composite plastic manifold with the torch though.
 

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That stuff is baked at very high temperatures. If you keep the torch moving you won’t have a problem. It’s not ABS.

And, to be clear: I would be shocked if a bolt going into the cold side of the head was rusted. We sometimes have issues on the exhaust side because the exhaust manifold is iron. The only rusted bolts I’ve found on my cars have been on the exhaust. My GXP has 110k miles. My ‘06 had 53k, and came from Virginia which is not kind to cars in the winter. Neither had an issue when removing the intake manifold.

Again: the intake manifold nuts and screws aren’t torqued much. Stop sweating it and yank the damn thing.


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Well having changed my clutch, pressure plate, flywheel, pilot bearing and throw out actuator just a month ago... I will tell you that you need to remove the starter to access one of the bolts. Some bolts face forward, some face aft (back). While I was there I also changed my engine mounts, so I found it very simple to leave the mounts very loose and jack the engine a bit to remove the starter. It's not fun, but it's doable. I did not take out the intake manifold. Just make sure that after you done, you make sure that the engine and transmission are lined up using the dimensions given in the manual.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Got it. The transmission bolt behind the starter was an absolute nightmare to get at. Had to make a crazy looking socket with about 4 extensions and 2 U-joint swivel attachments. I'll be sure to post pictures and explanations of how we worked it when I'm through with the whole process. Thanks for everyone's help in getting it off! Wanted to do it the easy way and yank the intake manifold, but it was just behind so many hoses and wires that it seemed quicker to come up with some whacky looking extension to get at the bolt.

Yet another issue though, but at least now it's just putting everything back together - when we removed the exhaust, the 2 bolts that secure the whole exhaust system to the catalytic converter snapped off their heads and now we won't be able to get the exhaust back in, even with new bolts, since the old shafts are stuck and seized to **** in there. Searched the forums and found tons of information on how to deal with this on the manifold bolts, but was hoping there was another way that didn't involve drilling them out. Anyone encountered this problem and found a solution that worked? Wax? We've put tons of pen lube on it and turned it with vice grips, to no avail.
 

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Yes.

Torch. This time, you won't have to worry about melting anything. Make sure the area is clean of any oil or anything else that's flammable. Go grab a torch from your local big box store (or auto parts store), like this one for $20:


Heat the remainder of the bolt up until it glows, then LET IT COOL OFF until it's cold enough to touch. The expansion & contraction will break up the rust. Grab whatever tool you can - good vice grips are one way to go - and work it loose.

If you have enough threads left on the bolt shaft, put two nuts on and tighten them against each other. Then, put your wrench on the inside nut. When you turn the wrench, the outer nut will keep the inner one from rotating relative to the bolt. You're basically making a new bolt head out of two nuts. I've used this technique on a lot of broken bolts. As long as you have sufficient threads left to get the two nuts on, and the rust is broken free, it works quite well.

If you don't have enough threads left for that approach, you can try with a pair of vice grips, but only once the rust is loosened up.

Another option is to cut a slot into the end of the bolt and use a flathead screw driver and a mallet to get it to turn, or flatten opposite sides of the bolt with a grinder, creating a surface that a wrench can lock onto.

Once the rust is broken free, it shouldn't take much to get it out.

You can also try soaking the thing in penetrating oil and letting it sit for a few hours, but the torch method works much, much faster and is more effective.

A last resort would be to take the piece to your local muffler shop and ask them to fix it. Some places have quite reasonable prices.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Thanks to everyone here's help, we got the car back together and it works, drives, and shifts like a dream. Over the past week I've gotten a check engine light twice, on which the car wouldn't turn over at all, but then I waited a moment and it started fine, with no more light, so I haven't been able to check the codes because I don't own a scanner. If anyone has any clue what this could be I'd love to know. Checked all the sensors we removed and they all seem to be seated right. The exhaust to cat had to be put together a little whacky because of how badly damaged the flange was but it's secured plenty well and the donut still makes a complete seal to the best of my knowledge.

I'm intending to do a write up on my experience in case it could help anybody in the future trying to do the same repair.
 

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I'm considering starting a "KappaWiki" for hosting all of the repair stuff. Enough of us have done these things multiple times, taken pictures, etc., only to have that work either disappear or be buried in the noise of search results.

Glad you got it running!

What's the code for the CEL? Intermittent frequently means a bad or intermittent ground, which is easy to do on a job like this.
 

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Also:

Bluetooth or WiFI OBD2 scanners are about $15 on Amazon. You'll need an app for your phone, tablet or Real Computer to talk to the device. I have DashCommander which works reasonably well. If you have an Android device, get Torque. It's freaking awesome, and does a lot more than scan codes.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
I'm considering starting a "KappaWiki" for hosting all of the repair stuff. Enough of us have done these things multiple times, taken pictures, etc., only to have that work either disappear or be buried in the noise of search results.

Glad you got it running!

What's the code for the CEL? Intermittent frequently means a bad or intermittent ground, which is easy to do on a job like this.
That actually sounds like a great idea!

Is this "Intermittent frequently" thing a negative ground shorting with something it shouldn't touch? Trying to imagine what may have happened to cause that.

I'm happy to help put something like that Wiki together if I could in any way. I have experience in web stack programming and many other things depending on what you're trying to set up.

Also:

Bluetooth or WiFI OBD2 scanners are about $15 on Amazon. You'll need an app for your phone, tablet or Real Computer to talk to the device. I have DashCommander which works reasonably well. If you have an Android device, get Torque. It's freaking awesome, and does a lot more than scan codes.
I'll have to break down and buy one. Worth it in the long run (y)
 
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