2002 Ranger XLT loss of power - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 07-17-2016
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2002 Ranger XLT loss of power

Hey guys, I need some help. I'm a chic who truly knows nothing about vehicles so please bare with me if i sound stupid when explaining my nightmare come true. LoL

I recently purchased a 2002 Ford Ranger XLT automatic transmission 2WD 2.3L with 74k miles on it. I was told it just needed a tune up. A day later it was in the shop already. It was driving really rough and at moments would loose power. The shop had it for about 2 and a half days. All they did was replace an O2 sensor and pigtail and charged me $300. Said to take it to an Auto Electrical Specialist. So it started to drive a little better but later that day im stranded. The truck completely shuts off and wouldn't turn back on. I get it towed to a shop that was recommended they said it was my fuel pump and fuel filter. So they replaced both charged me $454. They also notice some hoses that look suspect and wiring that maybe needed to be taped up and tied. So they went ahead and did that free of charge. So after those replacements I drove it all the way home no problem it ran 100% better. Or so I thought. as i got home and put the truck into Reverse it shook a little and as i put my foot on the brake to put into park it shuts off. So i throw it into park and turn it off and the back on and checked what would happen if i put it into the other gears. And it shut off on me twice more. So me thinking the problem is just at the time when lm stopped and putting into gear now. Well nope i was wrong. I go for a drive to the store and its driving like **** again and acting like it wants to shut off.

So if anyone has had this problem and can give me any advice on what this could possibly be or what they did to fix the issue. Please please please let me know as i really am at a loss.
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Old 07-17-2016
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please elaborate a little more

when the engine shuts off , do you still have dash lights on / off

are the vehicles running lights still on / off

sounds like the pats is kicking in ( it thinks the vehicle is being stolen )
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Old 07-17-2016
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I cant recall paying attention to the lights. When it left me stranded i want to say it djd have lights on both dash and running lights because i remember thinking to myself cant be the battery because everything still seems to have power. lights, radio, etc...
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Old 07-17-2016
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If it thinks the vehicle is being stoken what do I do to fix that?
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Old 07-17-2016
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okay i can rule the pats out ( pats would kill all power to the vehicle )

after re-reading the info , you put your foot on the brake pedal , truck shuts off

the problem lies in the shifter assemble on the steering column

there are electrical connections that are transferring power to various wires during the shifting process

these wires are what keeps the engine running

i of those connections \ the connection that feeds power to the ignition coil / is not receiving power during shifting
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Old 07-17-2016
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Ok... What about while im driving and when applying the gas it hesitates to want to go?
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Old 07-17-2016
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more than likely the ignition coil is not receiving the full 12 volts it requires to fully charge it`s internal coils

this can be the result of a failing electrical connection

have you replaced the spark plugs recently

you will need someone with a multimeter and 3 pins to insert through the electrical wires to test voltage to the coil pack
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Old 07-17-2016
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No, spark plugs have not been replaced.
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Old 07-17-2016
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I've been told by both shops that they are good still. But at this rate im not sure i want to believe either of thoae shops.
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Old 07-17-2016
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electrical wiring ??? taped and tied ?????

if that is what they did , i would ask for my money back

any competent mechanic knows that electrical wires require soldering and heat shrink tubing

hesitation during acceleration could be 2 things n

not enough voltage to the coil packs and or intermittent voltage loss to the fuel pump

try tripping and resetting the fuel pump roll over breaker in the passenger side foot well cover

some of the older models have been known to have failing fuel pump rollover inertia breakers
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Old 07-17-2016
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So is this something any competent person can test and fix? Or do i need to take it to another shop where they just want my money and act like they know and understand what they are doing? Lol sorry for my sarcastic irritation I'm beyond frustrated with this truck. I dont know even if i give up putting money into it if selling it i would even get my money back. It's catch 22 at this point it seems. And unfortunately i dont have anyone in my life that i trust enough to take their guidance and advice with this situation. (Hence me turning to the internet) I run a business and just don't have the time to waste nor the money and time to continue to waste.
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Old 07-17-2016
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the best way to find a competent and honest mechanic is to ask around

any 1 of your female friends husbands / brothers / fiances etc.

just out of curiosity , what compelled you to purchase a very older model of pickup truck

my advise to you at this time would be to take it to a reputable ford dealership

they have the diagnostic equipment to determine exactly what is causing the problem

i hate dealerships as well , but they can easily find the problem
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Old 07-17-2016
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Well my mom found the listing on craigslist and asked my brother to check it out. Its a 2002 with only 74 thousand miles on it. Which I can only assume is what stook out the most to her. As far as ny brother checking it out i dont know what was going on with him that day because he works on cars as a hobby and has been quite well at it. But on this day he didnt didn't pop the hood, didnt look underneath the truck and only drove it around the block. He told tell me that it drove a little rough and only needed a tune up. So that is the back story on how i ended up with my Ranger Nightmare lol =]

Thank you for your advise and insight. You have no idea just how much i appreciate you and your knowledge. I will be taking it to someone more mechanically/electrically inclined to get the problem checked and worked out.
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Old 07-17-2016
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well if the cut wires are only taped together , electrically , the connections could be shorting out

only soldering and heat shrinking the connections are acceptable

i did some googling for you , and i found this , i have never seen this issue before either

but it turns out it was in this video , the engine coolant temperature sender

computer cannot determine proper engine coolant temperature , so it shuts the engine down for safety reasons ( to prevent engine damage )

have the new mechanic replace this sensor 1st , ( get the part from the dealer OEM is better )


Last edited by cheese_man; 07-17-2016 at 05:49 PM. Reason: forgot to add youtube video link
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Old 07-17-2016
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i almost forgot

your brother can easily replace that coolant temperature sender

also have your brother do a cylinder compression test to see if the piston rings have in fact suffered over heat damage

Last edited by cheese_man; 07-17-2016 at 05:51 PM. Reason: added words
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