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96 Ford ranger 2.3L 4 cylinder acceleration hesitation


haizrail

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hello, guys I'm afraid I've come across bad news. I went down to the shop that preformed the compression test to confirm the results.I wanted to see prove not just someones word, and the paper said 125 psi per cylinder.

I'm going to put plugs and wires on the old bird and check the fuel pump.
but at this point if those don't fix the issue I guess it's the motor.
 


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Mark_88

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As long as they are all the same it shouldn't matter too much...when one cylinder is more than 10% lower than the others that might indicate a problem that may affect performance but it won't give you the symptoms that you are seeing...that is too sporadic to be anything other than a bad ground, connection, or a wonky part that hasn't been determined.

The shop that did the compression test should have advised you what those numbers mean...if they said you need an engine rebuild I would get a second opinion...or simply ignore the advise for now...
 

haizrail

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I'm going to put plugs and wires on it and check the fuel pump pressure on the first of the month . and if it's still doing it after that I'll check into a top side of the engine rebuild. but I'm not going to be putting money into it that part unless everything else fails. and even then I'll get a estament on how long I can drive it before it has to be done. I'll report back after the first.
 

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I do have to say it's very easy to start. I don't even need to get into the truck and start it. it fires within 1 turn of the switch 1-2 seconds. I noticed this difference when I installed the old coil packs, it ran a lot better, and now it's only doing it when in park or hard on the throttle 3/4 down. before with the newer coil packs it was 1/4 on the throttle. and when I rev the motor up I can hear the valves chatter. going down the road however, I don't.

to other fourm I've got going

http://www.ranger-forums.com/newreply.php?do=newreply&noquote=1&p=2108992
 

Mark_88

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I just read the other forum and RonD was on there and gave you an answer....saying the timing belt was off...and that it should correct both the popping and the compression.

I haven't seen that on any engine but it doesn't mean it is incorrect...but when you said that the engine was better and only had sporadic popping...and less so...that tells me it is not an issue with timing or anything other than a wonky wire.

But at this point I would have to say that the information is not complete or is, at the least, confusing because you have symptoms then you say they are gone...then you have them or some other symptom and you've replaced just about everything on the engine except the engine...

So maybe you should have them or someone else do the timing to make sure that is not the root cause of all your problems...
 

haizrail

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I know the timing was done, because I have the old belt and crank position senser. the truck was at the point of stalling out at take offs. before the timing was done. after the timing was done the only symptoms left were the misfiring and/or backfiring. when you press the throttle 1/4 the way down or when you would give it, normal gas to get up to speed. it had gotten to the point were it was skipping a beat backfiring as soon as I cranked it up for the first 2-9 miles then it would run as intend. except for pressing the throttle and engaging the passing gear at any rpm it would skip a beat and backfire throwing the transmission out of gear. or at least that's how it feels.
after I replaced the mas, and fuel cut off switch, relays, and purge flow senser it quit acting like it was going dead. while driving and a take off's.
when I changed out the coil packs that made a huge difference, the backfiring and skipping is only happening now when you press the throttle 3/4 down in park or neutral. and it's only doing the same thing in passing gear around 80-90 mph, before it was all over the mph range.
I'm not a mechanic and I'm not sure how to explain stuff sometimes. but I do know that everything I've done to it has made it better. or it's made it better and then it's starts it back up. at this point the truck is derivable.
I'm going to change the plugs and wires and check the fuel pump pressure see if that helps. but if it doesn't, then the motor is all that's left. Unless it has something to do with the torque converter or shift solenoid.

I may have two problem that's acting like one big problem. with all your help and rond help and tomw, I've got my truck derivable to the point of where I'm enjoying it again. but I want to know what causing the problem. and the main difference I noticed after the timing was done was how long it took to crank. it was 4-7 seconds before the timing and after 1-2 seconds give or take.
 

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mark_88

when I put the truck into the shop the first time I had them redo the timing because I thought that's what it was. and they did come back and told me that the timing was 3 teeth off and that the senser was shot. this was done after the pcm was replaced. then the truck stayed down there for two weeks because they were trying to figure out why it was doing it. I picked it up and it drove fine until i had to pass a car then it started the same stuff up it was doing before I had the timing redone.
while it was in the shop I started this post and with everybody's the truck is better.

the mas made the truck not stall out taking off or spit and sputter taking off

the fuel pump relay and full throttle cutoff ac wac relay fixed the low circut to fuel pump, which was causing most of the hesitation I was having and cutting out I believe.

the purge flow senser made what it's going now alot less harsh than before I replaced it.

the air filter made it's response time improved a little along with fuel mileage which is 23.4 in town.

the fuel cut off switch made the throttle not cut out going down the road

Fuel regulator noticed no difference at all.

and replacing the new coil packs with my old ones, made the truck do it at 3/4 throttle pressed instead of 1/4 pressed while in park or neutral. and driving it went from doing it in the entire mph range under hard accelerating to hard accelerating between 80-90 mph.

I hope this clears it up.
 

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OK, well that does make a bit more sense. I have actually seen where an engine will start and run perfectly and seems to do so up to a certain point but then coughs, sputters, or otherwise loses power...that is actually timing...valve timing is off just enough...or distributor is slightly retarded so it needs to be turned ever so gently to handle the higher revs.

I know this is a new truck for you (or recently acquired) so takes time to adjust...maybe it is the plugs or wires...but they are what I consider "constants". They don't change as the engine speed changes...they don't fluctuate even a bit...although in some cases a wonky wire will arc out on something for no apparent reason and then you get a misfire or sluggishness...but that can easily be tested...turn out the lights...get a water squirter and gently spray the engine...start it up and watch for the light show...

If you see all kinds of light flashes this could indicate that the coating on the wires is done and changing them and making sure they are isolated from metal objects might help....

Might.

If that doesn't work and you don't see fluctuations in the fuel pressure...then I would see about the timing...although it may only be out very slightly...

here's hoping...:)
 

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I am going to take it and have the compression redone because I found the result fishy.
wires and plugs seems like the next best step.because I remember having a 93 Corsica that had new plugs and wires put in it, watched the guy do it, and everything was spot on and 3 weeks later the car was skipping like crazy and backfiring, and we pulled the plugs and two of the plugs gaps had been gone, I guess is the right word. the only thing we could figure about that was a cylinder had came up to far and bashed the spark plug, replaced them and the car ran grate until I junked it.
 

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One thing to note is that the engine may have a 'rev limiter' so you can't rev too high in neutral. The engine will cut out as it reaches high rpm sitting still.
The problem of the 80-90 mph cutout could be the same thing. In reality, being in a lower gear at those speeds is kind of out of ordinary driving. And unless you live in NV or MT, kind of over the posted limit. It may be perfectly normal operation.
If you had 125psi, I would expect an engine that would be easy to turn over(rotate crankshaft, etc), but lacking in power. Pressure should be higher, from what I know. If the pressure is even, the engine will run smooth, but might be low on power. Your MPG indicates it is running well, so I bet the readings were taken with the engine cold, or the throttle left closed instead of wide open(ignition defeated while testing). Either will affect psi readings.
tom
 

haizrail

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there are a few old dead end road's around here that no on lives on anymore that are about 3 miles long give or take. great for testing. and the truck does lack power.the thing is it can get up to the speed cut off of 96 mph but slow at getting there, well slower than it should be.

this is what I don't get when i switched out the coil packs the old coil packs made the truck run better as notated in the other posts.
the reason I took them of and replaced them was because a lack of power.
the new one's picked the truck up some but it was still there.
wondering if I need new coils along with wires and plugs
and what struck me about the new coils were that one of the places you connects the wires on, it was the back coil pack, back port on the right was melted.
 

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I haven't seen any updates and the other forum looks like it is stalled out too...is this resolved and working properly? Did you have the compression retested to see if the first shop didn't do it right?

It sounded like you were on the trail of fouled plugs but I haven't checked it today to see if you updated...too many things going on in my own life sometimes...but let us know if you figured it out...
 

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Well, I changed the plugs and wires and it didn't fix the issue. I also had someone to use a timing light to see if the timing was correct and it was spot on.I redone the compression test and it cam back 140 psi on each cylinder dry and 160 wet. and the truck is still doing it. it's back at another shop right now.
 

Mark_88

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Good to hear the compression isn't the problem...and unless you were dogging it up to 60 mph I doubt it would have been that...truck seems to have pretty good power aside from the problem you are having.

My 2.3 Ranger wouldn't climb as fast as yours does...I pretty much had to stand on the throttle to get anywhere.

And another shop might be able to find the problem...but I am still thinking it sounds like a bad connection somewhere...it would be nice if you could get it on a real time scanner and watch what is happening from that point of view...not sure what you could do with that but I've seen some pretty amazing scanners that show more than what a CEL can...

http://www.obdautodoctor.com/tour

Might be expensive...especially if you don't have a computer and adapter...those things tend to be very pricey....I was meaning to buy one for my 96 once I got it running...just so I could be distracted when I'm driving...lol
 


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