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2.3L ('83-'97) 1997 Ford Ranger 2.3L Manual (Bubbles in my radiator) And compression test numbers


kslifer1066

New Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2023
Messages
2
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0
Location
illinois
Vehicle Year
1997
Make / Model
Ford Ranger
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Engine Size
2.3
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Hello guys new to the forum, before I did a head gasket job I leak tested all my cylinders got to the last cylinder #3 and seen that I had bubbles in my radiator so now I have just completed a head gasket job, and rechecked with the leakdown test no bubbles on any cylinder and also did the chemical test where it turns from blue to yellow all checked out good, but after the head gasket job while topping off my coolant there are bubbles that are coming up every so often I was thinking that maybe there are still pockets of air still in the system, I have the heater on by the way while bleeding the coolant system, but then it will stop bubbling for a while, but seems like it comes back sometimes I know thats weird to say but today before I shut it off I was looking at it for about 5-8 minutes and there wasn't anymore bubbles, I am using a clear no spill coolant funnel and I can also see a little foamy stream coming up the side of the clear funnel I figure it's apart of those bubbles maybe if anyone needs a video, if you can do that on here let me know, but anyway I've flushed out my system a couple of times now and its always brown somewhat blackish, I hate to think it but would that maybe be something from the combustion, but i know from the looks of the original coolant when i had bought it recently it didn't look well maintaned it was brown draining out the coolant after I got it. I also noticed after flushing and topping off the coolant from the previous night that my radiator hose had pressure in it still the next day after sitting overnight. I also installed a new water pump during the head gasket job. I also did a compression test if someone could tell me how they are
Cylinder #1 Dry (175) With Oil (185)
Cylinder #2 -----(205)----------(210)
Cylinder #3-----(182)-----------(189)
Cylinder #4-----(184)-----------(195)
Thanks guys in advanced, sorry for the novel lol!!!
 


scottobr

Active Member
Ford Technician
Joined
Oct 2, 2022
Messages
25
Reaction score
4
Location
maine
Vehicle Year
97
Make / Model
ford ranger
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
2WD
the 2.3 can be hard to bleed. best to put it on a set of ramps , get the nose up, it can take up to a week to fully purge, just make sure you let thermostat open and get most of the air out before driving, just keep opening the cap to release air trapped. once a day, not when hot of course . it will suck in coolant from blow off tank, just monitor it and add as needed, it will stabilize, Did you have the head checked by a machine shop before reinstalling?
 

kslifer1066

New Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2023
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Location
illinois
Vehicle Year
1997
Make / Model
Ford Ranger
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Engine Size
2.3
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Thank You Scottobr I appreciate it! Yea I took the cylinder head to a machine shop and they pressure tested the valves and pressure tested the block, and shaved 8 thousands off they said everything was good to go, again thanks I do appreciate it!!!
 

scotts90ranger

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RBV's on Boost
Joined
Feb 28, 2001
Messages
8,370
Reaction score
4,896
Location
Dayton Oregon
Vehicle Year
1990, 1997
Make / Model
Ford
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Engine Size
2.3 Turbo
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Total Lift
6
Tire Size
35"
The heads normally crack between valves not blow head gaskets so if they magnafluxed it and pressure tested the head I wouldn't suspect that, going off of bubbles coming out the radiator cap while running is a hard way to troubleshoot... if you did the combustion gas strip test and it passed I would just keep the overflow bottle filled to the cold line and just check every now and then...

If you have several vehicles that are old like I do there's a nifty tool that helps get cooling systems full easier, don't remember what they're called but at work we call it "vacuum fill", at work we use the Snap On version but I have a Harbor Freight version and it works fine... What it does is use compressed air through a venturi to create a vacuum in the cooling system then put a hose in a bucket of coolant and suck coolant into the system. Being below atmospheric pressure the bubbles are now smaller once it gets to atmospheric pressure again so there's less room for air. GM has horrible cooling circuits so on their new engines the "require" the vacuum fill method or you risk engine damage, that's how I found out about it... I think everything newer has less than ideal cooling flow for bleeding so it just helps in general...
 

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