Some people don’t understand the reasoning behind a snorkel, and often think it’s so you can submerge the truck in to deep water. That’s not really its purpose.

The intake on your Ford Ranger is ducted in to your inner fender, and likely draws air from down near the bumper. That’s fine on a street driven truck, but if you start playing in mud and water holes, you don’t want the engine to suck any of the water in. Think of your truck as a big shop vacuum. It will hydro lock your engine, and most likely damage it. This is why you see people pull trucks out of water/mud holes after they die, remove the spark plugs, and turn over the starter to blow water out of the cylinders. Water doesn’t compress, so if you’re trying to turn the engine over with water in it, you’re going to bend internal components.

Having a snorkel helps reduce the risk of your engine sucking up water when you play in water and mud. Some people also like to put them up high to get cleaner air than the dust down by the road surface.

This is how I put a snorkel on my 1997 Ford Ranger 4.0L V6. I had initially added one in 2005, but removed it and built a new one in 2020.

This is an old picture, and unfortunately the only picture I have since it was taken in 2005, of the factory air intake on my Ranger, This is a view with the fender removed. That weird shaped piece that was attached to the round intake duct you see sticking through the inner fender allowed it to suck air from behind the front bumper.

What I Used:

Here are the pieces I used to build my snorkel:

(2) 2-inch 45 degree ABS pipe
(1) 2-inch 90 degree ABS short elbow
(1) 2-inch to 3-inch conversion ABS
(1) 3-inch ABS pipe
(1) 3-inch ABS 90 degree long elbow
(1) 4-inch ABS cap
(2) L-brackets
(1) 3-inch u-bolt

I got it all from Lowes.

Note that those 45 degree elbows fit together without needing a short piece of 2-inch ABS between them. I bought a 3rd 45 degree elbow and cut the end off and stuck it in the 2-inch to 3-inch adapter so I wouldn’t have to buy a piece of 2-inch ABS pipe.

The 3-inch u-bolt will go around the 3-inch pipe and through the side of the inner fender.

I used a 3-inch ABS pipe inside my fender since I had room inside the fiberglass fender. Check your space. If 3-inch doesn’t work, 2-inch will.

Here you can see the area I’m working with. You can see the round hole cut in to the side of the cowl from my original snorkel setup. It exited out of the top of the cowl. This new setup will go straight up through the fender.

I remove the rubber seal around the intake tube and sanded the lip so the 2-inch ABS elbow would fit over it.

I used black ABS pipe cement. It sets super fast, so be sure of your position and angles before you stick them together. I fit everything together first and then test fit each piece to be sure as I put it back together with cement. You might even want to mark your pieces with a paint pen or marker when you test fit it so you know how to line it up when you stick them together. Trust me, this glue sets up super fast and there was no moving them when they went together.

Here you can see where I used the 3-inch u-bolt to secure the pipe to the inner fender.

The cap is nothing fancy, just a 4-inch ABS pipe cap with (2) angle brackets in it spaced out to slide over the piece of ABS pipe I have coming out of the elbow. I didn’t have any desire to have a snorkel running all the way up to my roof.

Hopefully you do better on this next step than I did…

I messed up on my measurement and drilled the hole in the wrong spot. You can see where I used JB Weld Marine Weld to bond the cut piece of fiberglass back in after drilling the new hole. Also note how the hole angles do to the bend in the pipe.

Good luck!

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