View Full Version : Dead Ford Ranger
03-01-2005, 05:33 AM
Need some help on a problem that has me stumped. My '88 Ranger 4x4 2.9L V6 is only firing on 5 cylinders. #3 is not firing. I checked for spark and it is getting it and when I pulled the plug to put in a new on it was dripping with gas so it's getting fuel, maybe too much. I put my thumb on the plug hole it had my wife crank it over and it knocked my thumb off so I figure it has good enough compression to fire anyways. So that's the story. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
03-01-2005, 07:45 AM
If its getting spark and gas you would think it would fire. It maybe the spark plug wire is shorting and not getting the right voltage to that cylinder. If it has a distributer that might be the cause also
03-01-2005, 09:59 AM
Agree.Bad plug wire shorting is often the problem .Replace it with a different one to rule that out.
03-01-2005, 10:52 AM
No expert, but my 91 ranger V6 was getting spark, but had a was missing on at least on cylinder. The miss was load dependent, so that means that simply seeing spark doesn't tell the whole story. I changed plugs, plug wires (a sometimes much over looked item), cap and rotor and it fixed my problems. Your problem could be more involved, but I'd start with the cheap stuff. After that, I'd probably do a "real" compression test.
Hope this helps.
03-01-2005, 11:19 AM
Misfiring under load is usually (can never say always) ingition related.
When it is dark go out and fire it up. Look at the wires and check for arcing. I have to be very dark.
My bet is wires...........
03-01-2005, 01:52 PM
Sometimes a bad vaulve,or cracked head gasket will not allow the compression, it will still 'blow' your thumb off, to build up to the optimin pressure,(135-150psi) could be carbon build up or burned. Another thing, pull the dipstick and smell if gassy could be blow by from rings.
When you do a good compression test, check each one of the cylenders both dry and with a squirt or two of oil- compare and the results should be within 15% of the highest.
03-03-2005, 06:06 AM
OK. I switched a different wire in the place of the one on the dead cylinder. It is still not firing on number 3. So I guess when it warms up a bit I'll check the compression. Any other thoughts?
03-03-2005, 10:06 AM
A local dealership charges me $25.00 for a diagnostic and estimate of repairs.
Well worth it! I take the diagonstic and use it to repair it myself.
Throwing parts at a problem can esscalate $$ pretty fast.
Just a thought......
03-03-2005, 10:34 AM
Have you looked at the distributor and rotor yet? Switching a wire doesn't isolate the other components upstream. Also, I don't think you need to wait until it gets warmer to do the compression test. When cold, you may not get the absolute proper pressure, but you can certainly get a good relative measure and compare with measurements on the other five. It sure sounds ignition or compression related, but again, I'm not an expert.
I also agree with cadetman that a diagnostic may be in order, however, I'd try the above two items first. I recently had to pay to get a computer diagnostic, but around here it was much more than $25 - more like $80.
03-03-2005, 01:26 PM
Shop for a diagnostic.......... it should not take more than 1/2 hour shop time. At that time I was Service Manager and we had a $52.00/hr flat rate.
A good diagnostic is more than a computer reading. We hoisted it and checked brakes, exhaust, etc. Not only did it bring attention to problem areas, generated income, it provided a service to the customer. We welcomed Do It Yourselfer's cuz they often wandered over to the parts dept.
03-04-2005, 05:29 AM
Astrobee: It's because I am a sissy. It has nothing to do with what I think about the motor. I HATE being cold. smile.gif
I probably will limp it into the shop. Might even have them fix it, depends on how lazy I am being. Of course I have a new motor for it so I might just say to heck with it and change it out.
03-04-2005, 02:54 PM
$25 diagnostic...$80 diagnostic...I wish. My Powerstroke diesel doesn't break often, but when it does the first thing the local dealer does is a $125 diagnostic...and I've checked...it's standard at all Ford dealers.
03-04-2005, 03:17 PM
I hear you Bubbabod. I get spanked on my 6.5 diesel as well. Not $125 though. Labor rates are $10 to $20 and hour less in this area than metro.
03-04-2005, 05:02 PM
LUV MY V-10.
03-04-2005, 09:26 PM
I don't love spending $65 to fill mine up every week. My '99 V10 got better gas mileage than my '03.
03-05-2005, 05:10 AM
My four cylinder keeps looking better and better!
03-05-2005, 05:48 AM
My restored 1980 VW Turbo Diesel gets 51 mpg.......
I am running it on used french fry grease. I use the process of estrification to convert the grease to "biodiesel". Runs much cleaner and seriously, there is the faint smell of french fries near the exhaust.
I grin wildly as I buzz by the gas station.
03-05-2005, 06:25 AM
I'm inclined to agree that it's electrical in nature. Since you switched the wire and still have the problem you have eliminated the wire as the culprit. You still have the possibility of
1. Bad plug- cracked ceramic etc..
2. Dist cap/rotor problem.
You can eliminate the plug by switching plugs out and see if the miss moves with the old plug.
You can eliminate the dist cap/rotor by carefully identifying and moving all plug wires one space on the dist cap (don't just yank them all off, do it one at a time). Do this by moving them one space in the direction of rotation (pop the cap, crank and observe direction). If the miss moves to the new cyl, the dist cap/rotor is your culprit. If the miss stays home at #3.....it ain't electrical and is fixing to get somewhat more expensive.
Diagnostics are a great tool- but I'm tight and only use them as a last resort.
Now where is that big shady tree out by the fence.
03-08-2005, 06:08 AM
Cadetman, May I say that you suck? tongue.gif I have looked and looked and looked for a TDI and all I came up with was an '80 NA diesel. Not that I am complaining about the 47 MPG but I just wish it didn't come with the 54HP. Wanted that 90+HP os the TDI but oh well. What process do you use for your Biodiesel?
I bought a new cap and button so I'll try that and if that doesn't get it then I am swapping motors and saying the heck with it! Thanks all.
03-08-2005, 07:55 AM
transesterification ..... here's a link for now. I have a better one but it is on my laptop. This will give you the info tho....
My first VW diesel was an 81' N/A (non-turbo). It even had A/C. Man when you were going up hill with a load and the A/C on....... Yikes.
I now have an 86' Jetta Turbo Diesel and my 80' VW Pickup that I transplanted a 85' Turbo Diesel into. The pickup has a 15 gallon tank!! On a good day with good fuel that gives a nearly 800 mile range. And it goes like a bat out of hell (for a little diesel that is).
I get my grease from 2 major franchise fast food joints in town. I provide plastic 55 gallon barrels and they fill them up. I prefer them because they only fry french fries in the oil I collect (cleaner and my exhaust smells so good!).
It is a bit of a pain to produce so I do it in 2 barrel batches (100 gallons) thank goodness I don't have to do it but a few times a year.
Probably more info than you wanted but I tend to wax on about this........
03-08-2005, 08:37 AM
Hey Barry: 15.5 hows that, I run K&N air filter and oil filter. Drops to 10.5 pulling our fifth wheel.
K&N are spendy, but the end results pay for them, as soon as I put it in I noticed a increase in power and mpg. 2001 F-250.
03-08-2005, 11:31 AM
I know it is transesterification but do you treat with acid then the base or just with the base?
03-08-2005, 12:53 PM
Not much of a chemist my friend but here is the simple method.
1. Measure your WVO and pour it into your reaction vessel
2. Prepare your methoxide this way: mix 25% (by volume of WVO) of pure methanol and (6.25g/liter of WVO) of sodium lye (NaOH)
3. Heat the WVO to 48-52 deg C (118-126 deg F)
4. Add 3/4 of the prepared methoxide (save the rest in a sealed container out of reach of children and flames, sparks... or prepare a fresh batch for the next stage -- do two calculations: first determine the amount of needed chemicals, then split it in 3/4 and 1/4).
5. Mix for 50-60 minutes holding the initial temperature.
6. Let the mixture rest for 12 hours.
7. Separate the glycerine from the FAME -- you'll notice that at this point the glycerine is unusually thin.
8. Refill your reaction vessel with the first-stage FAME.
9. Heat the FAME to 48-52 deg C (118-126 deg F).
10. Add the remaining 1/4 methoxide.
11. Mix for 50-60 minutes holding the initial temperature.
12. Let the mixture rest for 12 hours.
13. Separate the glycerine from the FAME -- now the glycerine is a gelatinous mass. On top of the glycerine layer you'll find a thick layer of settled waxes (cream colored), which you shouldn't process further. Remember, this is one of the things that might clog your fuel injectors.
14. Wash and dry with your favorite method. I use the Idaho bubble wash method.
The University of Idaho's Bubble wash method
I would like to explain this method in this article, because it is crucial that your product is washed. Please, do not attempt to drive your vehicle with fuel made on this article's instructions before it's properly washed (the fuel, not the car). This fuel is highly caustic at the end of the second stage and it could damage the high-pressure fuel pump.
Here is what you'll need: a large plastic vessel (twice the volume of your reaction vessel), a cheap aquarium air pump (with enough air flow), a large aquarium air stone and some rubber hose to connect the pump with the stone. I use a pH meter for my measurements, but you can use pH paper (scaled 1/2 pH unit) or a digital pH indicator (around US$15). The pH indicator is the cheapest instrument if you plan to make more than 20 batches.
pH has no real unit, as it's formula is "pH= log (conc. (H+)ions)". So this is a number that is not affected by volume, as chemists needed a way of telling how much H- or H+ ions there are in an unknown volume of a liquid.
The pH of your second-stage FAME will be well over 7 (surplus lye), which is a sort of zero on the pH scale. The scale ranges from 0 to 14, acidic is 0 through 7, from 7 up it shows alkalinity, 7 itself is neutral.
So, if you have, say, 10 litres of a liquid with a pH value of 9 (2 units above 7) and mix it with 10 litres of a liquid with a pH value of 5 (2 units under 7), the result will be a liquid with a pH value of more or less 7, meaning neutral. This trick we'll use to wash our FAME.
First measure the pH of your FAME. Be patient, as it takes a little longer than with water mixtures. Write the value down. Prepare your washing vessel; fill it 1/2 with water (or with the same volume as the FAME you want to wash). Make sure that both the water and FAME have roughly the same (room) temperature. Now wash and dry the electrode of your indicator, dip it in the water and add strong vinegar till it reaches as many units under 7 as the FAMEs pH is above 7. Mix with a wooden spoon while adding minute amounts of vinegar.
So, if your FAMEs pH is 8.7, the water should have a pH of 5.3. All well so far? Now pour your second-stage FAME into the vessel, throw in the aquarium stone and fire up the air pump. Soon youll notice a string of bubbles rising up through the FAME carrying minute amounts of water right to the surface. When this water falls down again, it washes the soaps and surplus methanol out of the FAME and the vinegar neutralizes the remaining lye.
Let it bubble for 6 hours minimum. Turn the pump off and let the mixture sit for 12 hours. The water will fall to the bottom, turning completely white and the fuel you made will look much lighter in color now. Take the FAME out of the vessel, taking care not to get any water with it. You can achieve that either with a translucent hose, or you can epoxy a valve to your vessels wall near the bottom. Now slowly heat the washed FAME to 100 deg C (212 deg F) and hold the temperature until you see no more steam bubbles rising. The pH of your homemade fuel will be 7 +/- 0.25, which is good enough. Cool it down, filter the fuel, pour it in your cars tank and drive away.
03-10-2005, 06:53 PM
I get about 9 mpg with my 350 SD. I carry quite a bit of weight in tools all the time and those are city miles. I don't know what the Chevy or Dodge equivalent get in mileage, but I'll guess not much different.
03-31-2005, 06:23 AM
OK back to the Ranger issue. I went out to have a go at it again. I changed the cap and rotor button. I tried to start it and it would not run so I started poking about. I founf that on the vacuum side of the fule pressure regulator there was fuel. I don't think that is supposed to be there. Any thoughts?
03-31-2005, 11:41 AM
Barry, Im not sure how equal they are but I get about 15 mpg with my 318, its an all wheel drive, and thats mostly city.
03-31-2005, 01:38 PM
Ditto here, mine is a Durango with low speed gearing in the old 318 magnum, but they call it a 5.9, that must be a large cell-inder :rolleyes:
04-06-2005, 05:14 AM
OK, so I swapped in a known good fuel pressure regulator and I got it to run but it runs like crap again. It's not just one cylinder now. I think that all of them are firing but it won't take any throttle and it refuses to idle. I have to keep the pedal about half way down on order to keep it running but it runs VERY rough. I am now officially stumped. I guess I'll run compression checks on all the cylinders. Any other thoughts folks?