3.0 engine failure: how to prevent it?


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Aug 30, 2019
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Mariposa CA
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Going to purchase a 2007 Ranger with a 3.0. Yeah, I'm aware of the engine failures, and I believe I know how to prevent it. The only time the cam sensor comes into play is starting. Therefore if the gear that drives it and the oil pump fails, engine will not stop like with a distributor. On some motorhomes and large trucks with the 460 carbureted engine and electric fuel pumps, Ford had an oil pressure sensor that shut the fuel pump off if the oil pump failed. Don't know why. A few small GMs, like Chevy LUV, had a similar switch. I propose installing one of these on the 3.0. Don't know if it would be the right resistance for the Ranger warning light, but you should be able to find a plug somewhere to access oil pressure. Then wire it up so it shuts off the fuel pump or ignition. This is what I believe actually happens: Ford has always had a problem with a small piece of dirt seizing up the oil pump. This causes the distributor drive gear to shear. The cam gear is driven in a similar manner. A piece of material the size of a flake of tobacco will do it. Usually part of the rubber valve seals breaking off. You just take the oil pump apart and clean it. Of course with a complete engine failure, no one inspects the oil pump. I think this would work. Surprized Ford hasn't done it themselves. For those of you not familiar with how this works, the oil pump is driven by the distributor. There is a shaft from the bottom of the distributor to the top of the oil pump. If the distributor gear fails for any reason, the oil pump stops working. Of course with a distributor failure would cause an immediate shutdown. What Ford did on the electronic 3.0's is basically cut the top off of the distributor and stick a cam sensor atop it. The only function of the cam sensor is to establish TDC on startup. The crank sensor then takes over. As I said, most of the gear failures I have seen were actually caused by seized oil pumps. So the engine keeps running merrily away until it burns up from lack of oil. Hope this helps.
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