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Old 07-25-2008
Thread Starter

I am: C. E.
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Austin, TX
Vehicle: 1998 Ford Ranger
Posts: 1
Total Props: 0
Newb with some issues

Hello, my name is Corey, and I acquired a 98 Ranger 2.3L (?) when my grandfather passed away. The truck is relatively low mileage at about 77k, but it does have a few problems. I'll list them in a moment to see if maybe I'm in the right place to get some help.

A few things about myself. I am an avid car enthusiast... well, maybe not so avid lately. I have built up an older Toyota specifically for drifting and cruising around for fun. All of the work was done by myself or a friend with my help. So I'm not really new to cars, just Rangers :D.

So onto the ranger. It's a little beat, just an old work truck my grandfather used. Just like anything, it's got some problems.

The front upper/lower balljoints are all bad... weird to me, but they make sooo much noise. Can they be replaced individually, or do they have to be bought with control arms?

The truck has an intermittent CEL. It just comes on and off at no real intervals.

There is a shudder in the idle sometimes, and the truck will sometimes die if the steering is cranked too much or if it's cold and you press the brakes. I'm thinking this is just a vacuum leak somewhere. The truck also has a hard time idling down while coasting with the clutch in. I think these may be related.

Lastly, the truck has detonation like no other. i cannot believe how bad it pings.

So, am in the right place for finding the answers to these things? I think that once I repair these items plus fix a bunch of little trim things, the truck will be a great daily with much life and use left in it. I'm just looking to get it back up to a good level of driveability as well as find out what recalls/TSB's it may qualify for or are out for the truck. Thanks and nice to meet you!
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Old 07-25-2008
Trigger01's Avatar
RF Veteran
iTrader: (2)
I am: Mike Carr
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Knoxville, TN
Vehicle: 2001 Ford Ranger Edge+
Posts: 18,788
Total Props: 1
Howdy & welcome to the site! You will probably have better luck with your questions in the appropriate forum. Enjoy your stay!
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Old 07-25-2008
Machine090767's Avatar
RF Veteran
I am: Terrence L
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Minnesota
Vehicle: 2001 ford ranger edge plu
Posts: 6,409
Total Props: -3
welcome to R-F, C.E.!
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Old 07-26-2008
mossyoak03's Avatar
iTrader: (1)
I am: Marcus Dockery
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Ranger XLT 4X4
Posts: 193
Total Props: 0
welcome to RF
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Old 07-26-2008
madman4049's Avatar
I am: Nathan W
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Surprise AZ
Vehicle: 2005 Ford Ranger
Posts: 351
Total Props: 0
Welcome aboard.
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Old 07-26-2008
wydopnthrtl's Avatar
iTrader: (2)
I am: Rich B
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: SE, Mi
Vehicle: 2006 FX4
Posts: 2,342
Total Props: 0

I too suspect a vacuum leak. Don't know about the ball joints though.

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Old 07-29-2008
Bentley's Avatar
I am: William Bentley
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Billings MT
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Ranger XLT
Posts: 1,722
Total Props: 0
welcome to the site.
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Old 09-03-2008
PAPABEAR76058's Avatar
I am: JAMES M.
Join Date: Nov 2007
Vehicle: 2000 FORD RANGER
Posts: 72
Total Props: 0
Welcome. Ball joints can b changed out seperately. But U might want to go do the search thing. It's all there
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Old 09-03-2008
robert99ranger's Avatar
RF Veteran
iTrader: (4)
I am: Mr. Awesome
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Indiana/Mississippi
Vehicle: '99 Ford Ranger Flareside
Posts: 5,807
Total Props: 8
Welcome, did not know 98 had a 2.3?
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Old 09-11-2008
jaysinpa's Avatar
I am: Jason Walker
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: New Brighton, PA
Vehicle: 2008 Ford Ranger XLT
Posts: 648
Total Props: 0
Welcome to the R-F club.
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Old 09-11-2008
zabeard's Avatar
iTrader: (8)
I am: Zach Beard
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: IN
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Ranger
Drive Type: 4wd
Engine: 5.4
Posts: 26,041
Total Props: 4
the lowers are just a single balljoint which is pressed in.

the uppers you have to replace the whole control arm.

get the code from the CEL this will help determine the issue. autozone will pull the code for free.
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