1988 2.3L MFI 4cyl Ranger Throttle issue - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


SOHC - 2.3L & 2.5L Lima Engines Discussions and Topics specific to the Lima 4 cylinder engines

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  #1  
Old 08-23-2016
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1988 2.3L MFI 4cyl Ranger Throttle issue

I'm at my wit's end with my little Ranger, when I step on the gas to go it sputters like it's out of gas...with a good half tank. WOT pops and backfires. It has new plugs, Wires, Coil, O2 sensor, fluids. I found the cat fried when I dropped the exhaust to change the o2 sensor, as in hunks fell out. It was toasted from a very rich burn...I could smell it from the pipes. I did the TPS voltage test and found it has a dead spot at 1/4 throttle only...but it runs like **** after it warms up. All the part houses are telling me that the part I seek is discontinued. ..I really don't want one from pick and pull. ..I want a new old stock part...my father used to own a automotive machine shop and will not help me...wants me to do this on my own...so..I am reaching out to see if anyone here has had this issue and solved it.
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Old 08-24-2016
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Do you have a MAF system or a MAP system? MAF would be a sensor just after the air cleaner that measures air being fed to the engine. If it is bad, you'll get hesitation, bogging, and misfire when you step on the gas. A MAP will give a crappy idle when it goes, and may give an over-rich mix producing exhaust that will burn your eyes.
Take the TPS to an auto parts store. Ask for later model TPS they have in stock. Find one that fits, mechanically. Look at the terminals, and determine the wire count. If the wire count matches, it fits, use a VOM to check the 'sweep'. If THAT matches, buy the new one, and swap terminals on the ends of the wires. install, and plug-in. It should work.
tom
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Old 08-24-2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmwalsh0 View Post
Do you have a MAF system or a MAP system? MAF would be a sensor just after the air cleaner that measures air being fed to the engine. If it is bad, you'll get hesitation, bogging, and misfire when you step on the gas. A MAP will give a crappy idle when it goes, and may give an over-rich mix producing exhaust that will burn your eyes.
Take the TPS to an auto parts store. Ask for later model TPS they have in stock. Find one that fits, mechanically. Look at the terminals, and determine the wire count. If the wire count matches, it fits, use a VOM to check the 'sweep'. If THAT matches, buy the new one, and swap terminals on the ends of the wires. install, and plug-in. It should work.
tom
It has no MAF. The idle itself is fine..has lots of power at first quarter of throttle. .gets to about 25mph or somewhere around 3-4k rpm and boggs,sputters, and a few backfires...
I currently have only header at moment. ..the cat is dead from such a rich mix that I can smell but I get lean mix codes from the obd. Will replacement of TPS eliminate this?
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Old 08-24-2016
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OBD shows lean codes when the engine misfires ... the O2's didn't get used to burn the fuel, so there are EXCESS O2, which is by definition 'lean'.
Fix the misfire, perhaps the bog?, that is causing the misfire and the 'lean' may go away.
Perhaps using/buying a 'used' TPS from a boneyard to check if that is the cause might be a good step... then find/finagle how to use a newer one.
tom
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Old 08-24-2016
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Originally Posted by tmwalsh0 View Post
OBD shows lean codes when the engine misfires ... the O2's didn't get used to burn the fuel, so there are EXCESS O2, which is by definition 'lean'.
Fix the misfire, perhaps the bog?, that is causing the misfire and the 'lean' may go away.
Perhaps using/buying a 'used' TPS from a boneyard to check if that is the cause might be a good step... then find/finagle how to use a newer one.
tom
There is no misfire or pre/post detonation. ..the TPS voltage test revealed a faulty potentiometer.
It runs excellent till its either warm or given more then 1/4 throttle. ...where the dead spot is in the TPS. I also noticed alot of oil coming in thru the valve cover vacuum line. Going to put a puke tank on that line in an attempt to fix it.
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Old 08-24-2016
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Originally Posted by LilRedDangerRanger View Post
There is no misfire or pre/post detonation. ..the TPS voltage test revealed a faulty potentiometer.
It runs excellent till its either warm or given more then 1/4 throttle. ...where the dead spot is in the TPS. I also noticed alot of oil coming in thru the valve cover vacuum line. Going to put a puke tank on that line in an attempt to fix it.
Also...what other vehicles can I obtain the same part from?
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Old 08-25-2016
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QUOTE:Also...what other vehicles can I obtain the same part from?

As I said...
Take the TPS to an auto parts store. Ask for later model TPS they have in stock. Find one that fits, mechanically. Look at the terminals, and determine the wire count. If the wire count matches, it fits, use a VOM to check the 'sweep'. If THAT matches, buy the new one, and swap terminals on the ends of the wires. install, and plug-in. It should work.

Ask to look at later model 2.3 engines... you have model years from 89 to 2001. I suspect the pot assembly is the same, but the connectors were 'updated' to a newer style. I don't know for sure, but think the throttle bodies pretty much stayed the same.
If you are getting 'oiled', you may need a new PCV valve, and the oil separator on the side of the block underneath the intake manifold. It can get gunked or the drainback holes could be plugged to some degree.
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Old 08-26-2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmwalsh0 View Post
QUOTE:Also...what other vehicles can I obtain the same part from?

As I said...
Take the TPS to an auto parts store. Ask for later model TPS they have in stock. Find one that fits, mechanically. Look at the terminals, and determine the wire count. If the wire count matches, it fits, use a VOM to check the 'sweep'. If THAT matches, buy the new one, and swap terminals on the ends of the wires. install, and plug-in. It should work.

Ask to look at later model 2.3 engines... you have model years from 89 to 2001. I suspect the pot assembly is the same, but the connectors were 'updated' to a newer style. I don't know for sure, but think the throttle bodies pretty much stayed the same.
If you are getting 'oiled', you may need a new PCV valve, and the oil separator on the side of the block underneath the intake manifold. It can get gunked or the drainback holes could be plugged to some degree.
Ok...so..new tps....it's running worse....it's has throttle all the way thru now but as soon as I touch the gas it dies...the TPS is calibrated to the correct voltage, .9 V at closed throttle all the way to 5v at WOT.
Sometimes it will Rev to 4k+rpm...no load.
Give it ANY load and it dies now...I'm ready to put a .50cal round or two into it and have pick and pull come and pick up the leftovers...
I have ran it with straight header no pipes before...it didn't do this crap
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Old 08-27-2016
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Well you seem to have covered the ignition components by post #1, so will ask two things:
1)have you checked timing with the SPOUT jumper removed? Should be 10BTDC at warm engine idle.
2)have you checked fuel pressure & volume? Could fall on its face due to lack of fuel. The regulator has a vacuum line, you check pressure with the engine at warmed up idle, with & without the vacuum line. Pressure should be in the mid-40's I think, and bump with the vacuum line removed. Measure how much fuel using the relief valve on the gauge to catch fuel for 10-15 seconds, then do math to determine if that is adequate.
3) yeah, I can't count. Have you checked valve timing? The teeth on the cam may be off and that will make the engine have power 'band' differences. Quick check is to put the crankshaft at TDC and remove the plastic plug in the belt cover behind the upper radiator hose. Triangle on the cam sprocket edge should align with the pointer. If not, rotate crankshaft 360 back to TDC, and cam will do a 180 rotation. Check again. If off,
re-adjust.
4) Have you checked that the EGR valve is closed at idle? And the vacuum lines are correct? If it opens wide, you'll have a poor running engine. It should not be open at idle.
The description of two things, "runs ok until warmed up" and "runs ok until I open the throttle" may be two different things. Warming up puts the system in 'closed loop', where the computer uses signals to adjust the engine running. A bad O2 sensor WIRE, grounded or shorted or broken, can give the computer a bad reading, "Lean code", which you got. Check the wires, and if you have a VOM, check the O2 voltage output signal.
The runs until you open the throttle may be the fuel pump, filter, or regulator, so check pressure & volume.

tom
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Old 08-28-2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmwalsh0 View Post
Well you seem to have covered the ignition components by post #1, so will ask two things:
1)have you checked timing with the SPOUT jumper removed? Should be 10BTDC at warm engine idle.
2)have you checked fuel pressure & volume? Could fall on its face due to lack of fuel. The regulator has a vacuum line, you check pressure with the engine at warmed up idle, with & without the vacuum line. Pressure should be in the mid-40's I think, and bump with the vacuum line removed. Measure how much fuel using the relief valve on the gauge to catch fuel for 10-15 seconds, then do math to determine if that is adequate.
3) yeah, I can't count. Have you checked valve timing? The teeth on the cam may be off and that will make the engine have power 'band' differences. Quick check is to put the crankshaft at TDC and remove the plastic plug in the belt cover behind the upper radiator hose. Triangle on the cam sprocket edge should align with the pointer. If not, rotate crankshaft 360 back to TDC, and cam will do a 180 rotation. Check again. If off,
re-adjust.
4) Have you checked that the EGR valve is closed at idle? And the vacuum lines are correct? If it opens wide, you'll have a poor running engine. It should not be open at idle.
The description of two things, "runs ok until warmed up" and "runs ok until I open the throttle" may be two different things. Warming up puts the system in 'closed loop', where the computer uses signals to adjust the engine running. A bad O2 sensor WIRE, grounded or shorted or broken, can give the computer a bad reading, "Lean code", which you got. Check the wires, and if you have a VOM, check the O2 voltage output signal.
The runs until you open the throttle may be the fuel pump, filter, or regulator, so check pressure & volume.

tom
How do I post pics if possible and can I post video? Then we all could have some real good data to go on for advice. I'm checking out this canister thing on the fuel intake behind the hpfp that's going to cost $80 to replace...I don't want to if I don't have to.
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Old 08-29-2016
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Originally Posted by LilRedDangerRanger View Post
How do I post pics if possible and can I post video? Then we all could have some real good data to go on for advice. I'm checking out this canister thing on the fuel intake behind the hpfp that's going to cost $80 to replace...I don't want to if I don't have to.
Ok...so I removed this canister thing from the fuel system...it's running. Time to take it in for a fuel ratio reading, see where it's at with consumption
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