It is difficult but not impossible. I just did it. You will need to be very very patient and very coordinated, as it is quite frustrating. Note these instructions are for the 6 cylinder. I have no idea about the 4 cylinder.
OK, here goes.
1. Look up along the lower radiator hose. It will plug into a metal tube on the engine side. Follow the metal tube. It goes to a housing. The housing is kind of buried in the driver's side of the engine. There are 2 smaller coolant tubes plugged in above it. You do not need to touch those, although it looks at first glance like you do.
2. Disconnect lower radiator hose at the metal tube.
3. Disconnect fan switches 1 and 2. These are on elecrtical harnesses going to this housing.
4. Disconnect a sensor on the front of the engine, just above the lower hose. I believe this is the knock sensor, but I'm not sure.
5. Now for the fun part. There are 3 bolts holding this housing on. You can see one at the top. There are 2 others underneath it, such that the bolts form a triangle pattern. You will have to get the bottom 2 out by feel (blind). They are 10mm.
6. Also, if you look to the front of the housing, you will note another 10mm bolt on the front holding down a black plastic leg. This is a wiring harness duct. Remove that bolt. Trace back along the duct. There is one more bolt on the driver's side retaining the duct. There is also one on the back of the engine at the firewall / driver's side. Remove these 2 as well.
7. There is a 12mm bolt holding the metal tube from that housing to the driver's side. Remove that bolt.
8. Gently pry the plastic wiring duct toward driver's side, and back toward firewall. You have just enough to get it off of the stud on the thermostat housing.
9. Now you can pull the housing. It will not come all the way out. It will come loose enough to give you just enough clearance to remove the thermostat (barely). Once you remove the thermostat, you have to pass it downward and toward the firewall to fumble it out.
By the way, you will notice that the metal tube is kind of wiggly in the thermostat housiung. This is normal.
10. Pass the new thermostat in the same way you got the old one out. Make sure when you plug it in that it has an air bleed poppet, and that this poppet is facing up.
11. Reassemble by reversing removal. Getting the nuts / bolts back in blind is... fun...
I don't know the torque spec. You can get a torqure wrench in there barely if you get creative with extensions, knuckles, etc. I wouldn't go abouve 8-10 ft-lb.
. It was my first attempt at it on this car, and it took me about 2 and a half hours.
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