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New to rangers


SvenLaxMan

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I have said before in an earlier post but i bought my first ever vehicle a couple months ago. That vehicle is a 1988 2.9L V6 ford ranger STX 4WD supercab. Not 100% if i said that properly but i am very new to this. I would love some tips on how to work on my truck, what to look out for, where to find parts. Anything helps because its an old truck and i want to treat it with the love and care it deserves but at the moment i dont know how to. Its in relatively good condition but it needs work. Please help me out. I will post photos soon.


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RonD

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Bookmark this page: https://www.therangerstation.com/how-to/

Loads of Ranger How-tos from members

1988 is a 1st generation
2nd gen started in 1993

2.9l was one of the first fuel injected Ranger engines, it was used thru 1992 in Rangers
1988 has 2 fuel pumps, one in the tank, lift pump, and one in the frame rail under drivers seat area, high pressure pump

2.9l used a TFI spark system, these did have problems with the TFI Module on the side of the distributor
It would get heat sensitive causing hard or no start after engine was warmed up
The distributor did need to be manually timed using a timing light to set Base Spark timing.

1988 2.9l 4x4 will have Mitsubishi FM146 manual transmission, OR A4LD Automatic

The 2.9l shouldn't be overheated, well no engine should, lol, but the 2.9l will crack a head if overheated, so pull over if you see the temp gauge going up, DO NOT try to make it home.
Let it cool off and then limp home in short trips, you could be making over $100 an hour when you do this, in the cost savings of not having to get new heads, after a $10 hose springs a leak :)
 

SvenLaxMan

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Joined
Feb 15, 2019
Messages
12
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0
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Location
Arizona
Vehicle Year
1988
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Manual
Bookmark this page: https://www.therangerstation.com/how-to/

Loads of Ranger How-tos from members

1988 is a 1st generation
2nd gen started in 1993

2.9l was one of the first fuel injected Ranger engines, it was used thru 1992 in Rangers
1988 has 2 fuel pumps, one in the tank, lift pump, and one in the frame rail under drivers seat area, high pressure pump

2.9l used a TFI spark system, these did have problems with the TFI Module on the side of the distributor
It would get heat sensitive causing hard or no start after engine was warmed up
The distributor did need to be manually timed using a timing light to set Base Spark timing.

1988 2.9l 4x4 will have Mitsubishi FM146 manual transmission, OR A4LD Automatic

The 2.9l shouldn't be overheated, well no engine should, lol, but the 2.9l will crack a head if overheated, so pull over if you see the temp gauge going up, DO NOT try to make it home.
Let it cool off and then limp home in short trips, you could be making over $100 an hour when you do this, in the cost savings of not having to get new heads, after a $10 hose springs a leak :)


Thank you so much for your help, sounds like you have experience with crackin a head.


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RonD

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I own a 4.0l OHV, 1990-2000 Rangers, shared the same flawed heads as the 2.9l

Not bad engines, just have that one flaw.

Most engines just blow a head gasket when overheated, which is bad enough, lol, but when you add $200+ per head to a gasket set it gets to be an expensive "drive home"

Yes, been there done that

They say you "learn from your mistakes", I seem to be learning more every week.................darn it
 
Last edited:

Nez'sRanger

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On that note, I highly advise you run a coolant cleaner through the engine. My 89 2.9 came with a cracked head (thanks previous owner!), and one of the biggest things I noticed was there was so much crap built up inside the coolant channels inside the engine block, no wonder it overheated! After flushing the block like that, I recommend just changing the radiator and heater core, all hoses, and heck, while your at it, what's a couple dollars to just change the thermostat?! On these engines, that little bit of overkill on PM can save you tons of $$$$ in the long-run.
 


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