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Old 12-07-2017, 06:36 PM   #1
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I am still looking to buy another Ranger,this time I have found a 2002 4x4,auto trans,appears to be in good shape based on pics.Was this a good year for the Rangers,If anyone has any advice please share with me.Thanks
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Old 12-07-2017, 10:35 PM   #2
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I don't think there were "bad" years for Rangers, except 2013 and up

2002 had 3 engines offered
2.3l DOHC 4cyl Duratec, had heated thermostat and IMRC issues
3.0l Vulcan, reliable but under powered V6, used from 1991 to 2008 in Rangers, so a good "little" engine
4.0l SOHC, had timing chain issues until 2004 model year

Automatic transmissions are tricky in used vehicles, nothing to do with Ford, Chevy or ??.
How they were used and maintained decides "miles to go" before rebuild is needed, same as Clutch for a manual trans, parts DO WEAR OUT
2002 used 5R44E in 2.3l and 3.0l, 5R55E for 4.0l
No real fingers to be pointed at anything specific on these for 2002 model year

4WD Rangers used 4x4 control module in 2002, these were known to fail, I would not say "common", just a known issue.

2002 will have PATS(passive anti-theft system), PATS keys are needed to start the engine

Check fluids, smell fluids.
Make sure Check Engine Light(CEL) comes on with the key, then goes off and stays off after startup
Ask to see the Title, you don't want to pay full fair for "rebuilt" or "salvaged" title


Ford has a very good "Used vehicle check", runs about $150
See if seller will allow you to pay for this test, if not you may want to rethink this one, could just be seller doesn't want the hassle of you taking it in, but he could also be hiding something major.

Last edited by RonD; 12-08-2017 at 10:31 AM.
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Old 12-07-2017, 10:45 PM   #3
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Thanks RonD,for your response and info.
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Old 12-08-2017, 11:38 AM   #4
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I agree with the above, most all older rangers were good. That's why they made so many rangers and that's why you still see so many rangers on the road today. Whenever I look at a car I start underneath. I live in Ohio so rust is a big factor in vehicles. You can learn a lot about a vehicle by looking underneath it. Check for rust on frame around the leaf spring mounts seem to be the worse spot. check the leaf spring hangers, those r common on all rangers. check the fluids. listen to the motor running while idling. see if it idles good and sounds good. ALWAYS check the title. you don't want to get burned on a title discrepancy like a salvage or rebuilt. That will change the price dramatically. I had a salvage vehicle and it had issue after issue after issue and tons of little things kept breaking that would just irritate you. so check for rust, fluid levels and what they look like, listen to that motor purr, check the title and drive it. If they don't let you drive it then don't bother. Probably got something seriously wrong with it.
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