This is a little thread on how to remove the actual aero headlamp assemblies from the header panel on a 92-96 Bronco (or F-Series). I replaced my 94 Bronco's headlamps last night because 1) they have Whelen strobes in them and 2) I wanted new Ford headlamps as I am refreshing the Bronco.
This thread is NOT in reference to removing the plastic headlamp bezel assembly, headlamp door or headlamp trim. This is a "How To" for removing the actual main AERO HEADLAMPS from the vehicle for replacement.
Tools you will need:
Phillips head screw driver (or drill w/appropriate screw bit)
10mm 3/8" long 6pt socket
11mm 3/8" long 6pt socket
5/16 1/4" short 6 pt socket
ratchet (both 3/8" and 1/4")
ratchet extensions (both 3/8" and 1/4")
needle nose pliers (or Snap Ring Pliers)
a couple of flat head screw drivers
1/2" or 7/16" wrench for battery cables (depending on what cables you have)
cardboard, old towels or foam (for laying headlamps onto once header panel is removed)
1) Disconnect and remove battery (either 1/2" or 7/16" depending on battery terminals). You will need a 5/16" socket to remove the battery hold down from the tray.
2) Remove the coolant/washer resevoir. You will need a 10mm socket to remove the nuts that hold the bottle to the bracket. Unplug the windshield washer pump harness, remove the washer hose and remove the coolant overflow hose.
3) Remove the center grille assembly. This requires removing (5) Phillips head screws (4 across the top, 1 directly in the center below the Ford oval).
4) Unplug the main headlamp bulb connectors from each headlamp assembly. To remove the headlamp door/bezels (the parking/turn signal lamps are integral to this piece and will come out as a single unit), you need to remove the (2) Phillips head screws on top of each bezel. After the screws are removed, the assemblies are still secured to the radiator support via 10mm nuts, which are affixed to the back of the lower orange light assembly. Each orange lamp has (2) 10mm nuts securing it to the radiator support. You need to remove these from access holes on the BACK side of the radiator support in the engine bay. Once you have removed the (2) nuts from each bezel assembly, carefully pull each assembly away from the radiator support and disconnect the remaining (3) bulb sockets from the lamp housings. There are PLENTY of threads & diagrams on this site to help with the removal of the headlamp BEZEL assemblies - the search function will reveal ALL of those threads if this small description of removal is not enough info.
5) Now that the grille and headlamp bezel assemblies are removed, you now see the black ABS plastic "header panel" with only the (2) aero headlamps still affixed to it. In order to remove the areo headlamps from the header panel, you must remove the header panel from the radiator support. There is no way around this step, as you cannot properly remove the specialty clips that secure the actual aero headlamps to the header panel while the unit is secured to the truck.
6) The header panel is secured to the radiator support by 5/16" fender bolts. If I remember correctly, there are approx. (10) of these that you need to remove in order to pull the header panel off of the vehicle. Start by removing all of the lower bolts, this way the unit will not fall forward as you are removing bolts. When you get to the center metal brackets (in the middle of the rad support where the grille would be, you will see 1 bracket per side which are also attached to the header panel. Each bracket has (4) bolts on it, 2 at the radiator support and 2 others that attach to the header panel). You want to remove the bolts from the header panel side NOT the radiator support. If you remove the brackets from the radaitor support, you will need to realign everything when you go to reinstall the parts and that can be a PIA. After you have removed all of the lower bolts and center bolts from the header panel, now start removing the top bolts. Once the last top bolt is removed, carefully pull the header panel towards you to get it off of the radiator support. You may need to wiggle it a little to dislodge it from the surrounding body sheet metal.
7) Now that the header panel is removed, place it face down onto a THICK cloth, cardboard, or foam so you can protect the faces of each headlamp from being scratched or damaged. Each aero headlamp is secured to the header panel by (3) specialty clips, which are located on the back side of the header panel. The clips have "wings" on them and these pinch into the soft black headlamp adjusting nuts. Each winglette has a hole in it. Get a pair of needle nose pliers (or a Snap Ring Pliers if you have those) and you want to insert the tool into the holes on the wings. After inserting your desired tool, spread the wings apart (away from the nut) and at the same time, use a flat head screw driver to push the clip UP so it will slide upward and off of the headlamp adjusting nut and off of the header panel. After you have removed the (3) clips from each headlamp assembly, you can now pull the headlamp assembly off of the header panel from the front side.
8) The headlamp adjuster assemblies are separate pieces and do NOT come with new aero headlamp assemblies. You will have to remove the old adjusters from the old headlamp assemblies. There are (3) adjusting screws per headlamp. The best way to remove these is to get a pair of adjustable pliers and on the back side of the headlamp, you want to "squeeze" the "wings" of the white plastic clip that secures the adjusting screw to the headlamp. While squeezing this clip, you also want to turn it counter clockwise so you can unlock it and remove it from the headlamp assembly. It's hard to describe, but, the clip is a locking clip and resembles a flat wing nut. This part locks onto the headlamp assembly through a keyed slot. In order to remove or install, you have to squeeze the wings together and turn, which will enable you to get the clip lined up with the keyed slot for removal. By removing the adjusters in this fashion, you are NOT monkeying up the headlight aim or adjustment, as when you get the headlamps back on the truck, your prior headlamp aim should have remained the same.
9) After you have removed each adjuster from the old headlamps, reinstall them into your new headlamp assemblies. The installation of the adjusters into the new headlamp assemblies will be completely reverse from removal. You also want to be certain that you are installing the adjusters back into the new headlamp assemblies in the exact spots from which they were removed from the old units.
10) Now reinstall your new headlamp assemblies back onto the header panel, reinstall the header panel, reinstall the headlamp bezel assemblies and reinstall the center grille. To reinstall everything, you are doing the complete reverse of removal, so just back track on the above steps. :thumbup
I hope the above is helpful for those wanting to remove or replace their headlamps. I searched through a ton of threads on here, through Steve83's online albums, my original 1994 Ford Shop Manual and the Haynes manual, and needless to say, there were not ANY CLEAR instructions on how to actually remove the aero headlamps from the header panel. Sure, there were plenty of diagrams, but no written instructions on what the steps were needed to removing the aero assemblies from the header panel. The above should explain more clearly the proper procedures needed in order to remove the aero headlamps from the vehicle more so than what was currently available to everyone.
Any questions, feel free to populate this thread with those questions or comments.