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Old 05-18-2015
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Annoying popping noise about to drive off cliff!

Howdy,
Ive got a 98 ranger 2wd Longbed just turned 130000 if thats important or not. Anyway, there is a popping noise coming from the front left This is driving me CRAZY!
at first i thought it was a wheel bearing so i replaced them on both sides up front. then a buddy thought it was a shock mount so i replaced all 4. Im no mechanic by any miens but im pretty smart and can figure things out with some help haha....
Heres more info on the popping noise. Its basically always popping smooth road rough road don't matter. Turning going straight rolling or sitting, but when it really goes crazy is when you turn the steering wheel and reverse from a dead stop. I've also noticed that it does it much more when its hot out. Today it was around 80 degrees out and holy cow i turn the radio up just to drown out the sound. When i park and shut the truck off for about 5 seconds or so the popping noise continues and fades off almost like whatever is bad is settling in
any help would be appreciated if anyone has got some info.
Thanks
Tyler
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Old 05-19-2015
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Cat converter is the most likely source of the described noise.

Listen for the noise when engine is cold, it takes a few minutes for Cat to heat up, so if no noise then it could be Cat.
Noise after shutting down is the cat cooling off.

Could have a broken seam or ??
Popping noise is the thin metal expanding and contracting, and yes it could get worse as outside temp went up.

Cats run hotter if your engine is running Rich, hows your MPG?
If it has gone down lately then Cat popping could be the sign of another issue.
Maybe O2 sensor is starting to fail lean so computer adds more fuel than needed, recommend replacement for front O2s is 100k miles


The other culprit may be torsion bar bushing(s), in 1998 some 2WD rangers got torsion bars instead of coil springs up front.
These work by twisting to support the weight of the vehicle, but usually this type of issue would be noticed more on uneven surfaces, bumps, and a clunking noise not popping noise

Last edited by RonD; 05-19-2015 at 11:30 AM.
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Old 05-20-2015
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actually RON that sound is more like the inner tie rod ends on that side

took me almost 2 weeks to find the problem , basically the teflon bushing inside the tie rod became shredded , at lot of binding going in there with all of those chunks of teflon
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Old 05-20-2015
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Could be, just guess until we hear back.

The straight or turning not mattering and this: "When i park and shut the truck off for about 5 seconds or so the popping noise continues and fades off almost like whatever is bad is settling in"
Pointed me at the Cat, a noise when engine is off and vehicle is parked
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