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2000 3.0l Engine Replacement Running Rough and No Power

Bird66

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Hi, I'm new to the forum.

So I bought a 2000 Ford Ranger 3.0l automatic XLT 4x4 Flex Fuel 8th digit: V with 156k miles with a seized engine (cam synchronizer failed). It has been sitting for about a year and pack rats had chewed up the wiring harness a bit.

I found a 3.0l engine out of a 99 2wd that had already been pulled. The lady said she thought it was a non flex fuel. She also told me that it had 70k miles. After I brought it home I noticed that it had a heat tab in the block, so I assume it was a junkyard motor that was put into her truck and then pulled again before I bought it.

I fixed the wiring and put the good engine in my truck using the flex plate block, heads, lower intake and the fuel rail. Everything else came off the original engine(exhaust manifolds, upper intake, coil pack, and the rest of the dressings). Also installed a new cam synchro, water pump, plugs(wires seemed new so we left those for the time being) and cleaned the MAF sensor.

The engine started up but runs rough and has no power. Computer shows 44% engine load at idle. Ran it for more than 30 min and drove it about a mile and no check engine codes yet.

Has a squeaking noise that comes and goes. It is similar to a belt squeak and an exhaust leak at the same time but is not the belt and don't think it has an exhaust leak either. When listening at the tail pipe sounds like it may have some exhaust suck. We also smell fuel while running.

We tried a few different firing orders but no change and added some sea foam to the tank. It does have fuel pressure. Did a quick check for vacuum leaks and didn't find any.

This weekend we are planning to put on the new plug wires, check compression in all the cylinders and try using the other coil pack. We could also try swapping the fuel rail along with the fuel injectors. I might also swap out the cam position sensor and may be the shaft also to try to fix that mystery squeak.

My questions to the forum are:

Does anyone have any ideas or experience with what this problem is or might be?

Are there any things I should check or try to swap other than what I plan to try this weekend?
 
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RonD

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Welcome to TRS :)

Flex Fuel has more to do with the computer and fuel injectors than the engine.

You need to use the larger fuel injectors from your original engine, thats what computer is programed to expect.

Different firing orders?????

Pretty much all Ford V6s use 1-4-2-5-3-6 to translate that to a coil pack is not too hard
1-4-2-
5-3-6
These are the balanced pairs of pistons, 1/5, 3/4, 2/6, each set has pistons at TDC at the same time this balances the rotating mass of the engine

To make it easier Ford set one side of coil pack as 1-2-3
These need to be matched with their pairs
1-2-3
5-6-4

There are only 3 coils in this coil pack, 1 and 5 share the same coil, as do 2/6 and 3/4

You can swap 1 and 5 wires, doesn't matter, so could be
5-2-3
1-6-4

As long as 1 and 5 are on the same coil, but pairs must be matched
2 and 6 will ALWAYS be in the middle of the coil pack
So there is really only one way this won't work well, if you reverse the end pairs, 1/5 and 3/4
So try it one way, if it doesn't work well reverse the ends pairs.
1-2-3
5-6-4
or
3-2-1
4-6-5


Squeaking noise is trouble some, common noise associated with cam synchro on the 3.0l
Remove fan belt and start COLD engine, you can run it no longer than 2 min without water pump
Listen for the noise, if you don't hear it its a Fan belt pulley noise, tensioner is common pulley failure

If you do hear it, then localize it, without the fan on, the engine bay will be very quiet



Gasoline in the tank can be bad, sitting does that, siphon it out or add good gas and hope for the best
I would remove fuel filter and replace it, it could be dry clogged, i.e. dried out inside and is crusty

Injectors may also be dry clogged, sitting the gasoline evaporates and leaves behind a varnish
With the new gas add a can of Seafoam or similar injector cleaner to the gas tank
 

Bird66

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Okay so we were able to check compression and cylinder 1, 2, and 3 all tested at 90+ psi and 4 and 5 are less than 20 psi, and 6 is less than 30 psi.

We are a little confused, because these engines aren't known for head problems as far as I know. We didn't hear anything when we started it up that would indicate bent push tubes or stuck valves. Additionally we don't think anything has rusted because the motor was pulled a year ago, been stored inside, and i could turn it over by hand. We are going to pull the valve cover to take a look but would like to not pull the head if we don't have to. Also the wasn't any blow-by.

Does anyone know what could be causing low compression on only one side of the engine (drivers side cylinder 4, 5, and 6)?

Is there a common issue out there that I am just ignorant of?
 

Bgunner

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IF one side of the motor, all 3 cylinders, are low the most likely culprits are Bad head, bad head gasket or burnt valves. Not wanting to pull the heads is a moot point now since that will need to happen to fix any issue that would cause this.

EDIT: I recommend doing a wet compression test to further diagnose exactly what has happened because it is always possible the rings could be bad on one side though less likely than head/valve issues.
 
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RonD

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3.0l Vulcan runs 9.3:1 compression ratio so your test was bad, because engine can NOT start with under 120psi compression

Magic number is 18, thats what you use to determine what to expect in a compression test
18 X 9.3(ratio) = 167.4

So Even with a drained battery and slow crank I would expect 150psi +
NOT 90

Retest

If you have another vehicle test pressure gauge on it first, just one cylinder

Proper test
Remove ALL spark plugs first
Then test one cylinder at a time
Press gas pedal down to the floor when cranking, listen for 4 or 5 "hits" of compression stroke

write down result and move on


Pressing gas pedal down to floor does two things, gives max air flow to engine and it TURNS OFF fuel injectors


Why we/you need compression in the first place
Gasoline can't be ignited by a spark, yes Movie guys take liberties with that, lol.

Only gasoline VAPOR can be ignited by a spark
And you need at least 30% vapor in the cylinder to get a good ignition/burn

That's why we need compression, to HEAT UP and turn some of the liquid gasoline from the injectors, into enough gasoline Vapor for the spark plug to ignite.

Once a cylinder has fired a few times its hot enough to cause gasoline to vaporize when it enters, but on COLD start you need that 120psi compression, if its 70deg outside then maybe 100psi would do it, like a lawn mower engine

In very cold outside temps even 180+ PSI compression is not enough to get cold gasoline to 30% vapor point.
That's how block heaters help, they keep engine warm enough to get enough vapor with 160psi compression

Ether works to start COLD engines because it has a LOW vapor point, its a vapor even when in the -deg temps, so spark can ignite it and that gets cylinders hot enough to keep running on the cold gasoline
 
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91stranger

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3.0l Vulcan runs 9.3:1 compression ratio so your test was bad, because engine can NOT start with under 120psi compression

Magic number is 18, thats what you use to determine what to expect in a compression test
18 X 9.3(ratio) = 167.4

So Even with a drained battery and slow crank I would expect 150psi +
NOT 90

Retest

If you have another vehicle test pressure gauge on it first, just one cylinder

Proper test
Remove ALL spark plugs first
Then test one cylinder at a time
Press gas pedal down to the floor when cranking, listen for 4 or 5 "hits" of compression stroke

write down result and move on


Pressing gas pedal down to floor does two things, gives max air flow to engine and it TURNS OFF fuel injectors


Why we/you need compression in the first place
Gasoline can't be ignited by a spark, yes Movie guys take liberties with that, lol.

Only gasoline VAPOR can be ignited by a spark
And you need at least 30% vapor in the cylinder to get a good ignition/burn

That's why we need compression, to HEAT UP and turn some of the liquid gasoline from the injectors, into enough gasoline Vapor for the spark plug to ignite.

Once a cylinder has fired a few times its hot enough to cause gasoline to vaporize when it enters, but on COLD start you need that 120psi compression, if its 70deg outside then maybe 100psi would do it, like a lawn mower engine

In very cold outside temps even 180+ PSI compression is not enough to get cold gasoline to 30% vapor point.
That's how block heaters help, they keep engine warm enough to get enough vapor with 160psi compression

Ether works to start COLD engines because it has a LOW vapor point, its a vapor even when in the -deg temps, so spark can ignite it and that gets cylinders hot enough to keep running on the cold gasoline
That's good info. Thanks.
 

Bird66

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Well, we figured out that our compression gauge leaks so the readings aren't accurate, but we can extrapolate for the leaky gauge. Did an exhaust valve leak test, and all three valves were leaking bad. I was really hoping that it was a weird or easy fix, or something that just happens to the 3.0s or something that got missed during the swap that could easily be remedied.

To my knowledge the 3.0s didn't have head problems so was thinking the worst. Pulled the head to find the valve seats were gone. At this point i was pretty mad because I was lied to. The lady told me it ran fine...

Anyway, we replaced the head, with the head off the seized engine and runs fine. I attached a picture of the bad head but had to resize it to upload so I hope it comes through alright.

now i just have to fix an abs code or two and should be ready to go.

Thanks for all the help!
 

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alwaysFlOoReD

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WOW, those valves and seats look bad. Glad you got figured out.
 

RonD

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Those are NOT valves, they are animated decorations
 

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