7.3L Power Stroke ICP Sensor Replacement

How to Replace the ICP Sensor on a 7.3L Power Stroke

The injector control pressure (ICP) sensor is found on 7.3L and 6.0L Power Stroke engines, which feature a high pressure oil system that utilizes oil pressure as a means of pressurizing fuel in the body of each injector. The ICP sensor reads the actual oil pressure in the high pressure system so that the PCM may appropriately increase/decrease oil pressure via the injector pressure regulator. The ICP is an analog sensor that produces an output between 0 and 5 volts.

Applicable Model Years: 1994.5 - 2003 Ford F-Series w/ 7.3L Power Stroke diesel
7.3L Power Stroke ICP Sensor: Ford F4TZ-9F838-A
7.3L Power Stroke ICP Sensor Connector:
Ford 5C3Z-12224-A

While the procedures and the location of the sensor are identical for all 7.3L Power Stroke diesel engines, the 1999 - 2003 engines may appear slightly different than the 1994.5 to 1997 generation engine featured herein. Replacing the ICP sensor is by no means a daunting task, although the International style sensors are more difficult to remove than the newer style Ford sensors.

If you opt not to replace the ICP sensor harness (which there is little need to if the connector and pigtail are in good condition), thoroughly clean the ICP sensor harness connector with an electrical connector cleaner - CRC makes an aerosol "electronic cleaner" solvent that is plastic safe (won't damage connectors or seals) and is highly effective in removing oil from connectors.

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ICP sensor location on a 7.3L Power Stroke diesel

• Disconnect both negative battery cables.

• The ICP sensor is located on the driver side cylinder head towards the front of the engine near the high pressure oil pump.

ICP sensor closeup

• Remove the electrical connector from the ICP sensor by relieving the retaining clip and pulling upwards away from the sensor. You'll notice that this ICP sensor has an accumulation of oil pooled in the sensor connection, an indication that the sensor should be replaced.

Ford vs International ICP sensors

• There are two types of sensors. The original International ICP sensor has a round body and a 5/8" integral nut at its base. It can be removed with a curved 5/8" open end wrench or a 5/8" crows foot.

• The Ford replacement sensor has a 1-1/16" hex head integrated into the body of the sensor It can be removed/installed with a 1-1/16" deep socket or wrench.

The two types are interchangeable.

ICP sensor removed

• Remove the ICP sensor from the high pressure oil galley in the cylinder head. Be cautious not to allow dirt or debris into the passage once the sensor is removed.

Installing new ICP sensor

• Coat the o-ring of the replacement sensor with clean engine oil and install the new sensor. Snug down, but do not overtighten.

• There's a number tools that can be used to install the sensor - a 1-1/16" sensor socket is being used here.

ICP sensor pigtail

• If the ICP connector pigtail is brittle, has exposed wires, or is otherwise compromised it should be replaced. The replacement pigtail is pricey, but does not necessarily need to be replaced every time the sensor is replaced.

• If not replacing the pigtail, install the connector on the ICP sensor after applying dielectric grease to the terminals and test for proper operation.

• If replacing the connector, remove the wire loom to expose the pigtail and create a reasonable sized workspace.

New ICP pigtail crimped in place

• Cut the ICP sensor connector harness and strip the wires so that roughly 1/4" of copper is exposed. Do the same on the replacement pigtail. Do not cut the wires too far into the harness, you only need to remove the length of wire that is compromised. We've cut the old pigtail roughly halfway between the connector and the main harness.

•The Ford replacement pigtail comes with three butt splices and heat shrink tubing. Install the heat shrink over the wires, then splice the pigtail to the existing harness.

• Once the splices have been crimped, cover them with the heat shrink tubing so that no part of the splice is exposed, then use a heat gun to secure the tubing.

Note - The wires of the replacement sensor may not be the same color as the wires on the new pigtail; use the original connector as reference so that the wires are spliced properly. The colors on our replacement sensor were indistinguishable from one another, therefore we simply matched the locations of the wires with that of the old connector. Double check your work before sealing the heat shrink tubing.

ICP sensor connector installed

• Reinstall and secure the wire loom on the sensor pigtail. For good measure, we installed an additional length of flexible wire loom so that the entire length of the pigtail was protected.

• Apply a small amount of dielectric grease to the connector terminals, then reinstall the connector and test for proper operation.