Timing Chain Rattle, what are the chances? - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 09-23-2009
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Timing Chain Rattle, what are the chances?

I have been looking at a 2001 Ranger Ext. Cab 4X4, 4.0, auto, 90k miles. I have been reading on here and various other Ranger/Sport-trac/Explorer forums about the dreaded timing chain rattle that seems to plague the early 2000's RBV's with the 4.0.

I have read the sticky about it on here and understand that it does not affect all vehicles.

Now here is the million dollar question, if the chain is not rattling when I test drive it what are the chances of the chain starting to rattle after I buy it? Is it likely for it to start soon or if it made it to 90k without rattling is it probably a non-issue?

Thanks everyone I appreciate your input.
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Old 09-23-2009
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I think its hit or miss. My 03 does it but lightly when its cold. My buddies 01 does loudly and all the time. I have heard of some owners not have an issue with their 01s.
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Old 09-23-2009
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I got my truck at 30,000 miles.....started hearing it at 40,000 miles..... Drove it to have ford take a look at it and said it came from the timing chain area. Used to do it only during winter months then it'd go away the most part in the warmer months. I let it do that for 4 years...this past years it's been the worst and I just couldn't stand it anymore. Loud, all the time hearing it, rpms didn't matter I hear it. So a few weeks back, I pulled the engine at 110,000 and dropped in a 1,000 mile '06 engine for LESS than it cost to just swap the chains and guides and tensioners.

As Christian said, it is kinda hit and miss. TrePaul's 01 4.0 has over 140,000 miles on it and it doesn't make one peep, yet mine yelled at only 50,000.
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Old 09-23-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fx4wannabe01 View Post
I got my truck at 30,000 miles.....started hearing it at 40,000 miles..... Drove it to have ford take a look at it and said it came from the timing chain area. Used to do it only during winter months then it'd go away the most part in the warmer months. I let it do that for 4 years...this past years it's been the worst and I just couldn't stand it anymore. Loud, all the time hearing it, rpms didn't matter I hear it. So a few weeks back, I pulled the engine at 110,000 and dropped in a 1,000 mile '06 engine for LESS than it cost to just swap the chains and guides and tensioners.

As Christian said, it is kinda hit and miss. TrePaul's 01 4.0 has over 140,000 miles on it and it doesn't make one peep, yet mine yelled at only 50,000.
Thanks for the info. I havnt driven it yet, but I probably should before I make a call. If its rattling when I test drive it, Im gonna walk, but if it doesnt then I might consider it and pray that it doesnt happen and if it does I'll trade the truck or something.

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Originally Posted by whippersnapper02 View Post
I think its hit or miss. My 03 does it but lightly when its cold. My buddies 01 does loudly and all the time. I have heard of some owners not have an issue with their 01s.
Thanks for the help, Im hoping this is one of the (rare) ones that does not have the issue. From what Im hearing this is a pretty hit or miss issue, I wouldnt worry about doing the timing chain on the front of the truck but the possibility of having to do one on the back scares me...


Fwiw they are asking $8800 for it. Pretty clean but I wont have a chance to drive it until this weekend.
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Old 09-23-2009
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For what its worth....I got my '01 in '04 with 30,000 on the clock for a whopping $10588 from a dealer with no special discounts. I think they're priced a little too high.
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Old 09-23-2009
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For what its worth....I got my '01 in '04 with 30,000 on the clock for a whopping $10588 from a dealer with no special discounts. I think they're priced a little too high.
Yeah I was thinking the same thing, I was going to drive it and throw them $8k but even that might be too high. Maybe I should keep looking but it seems like 4x4 rangers out here are pretty expensive.

Im originally from CA and Im living in Mass for college, it seems that 4x4 trucks are made of gold out here
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Old 09-23-2009
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Mine does it when I start it...I'm guessing the tensioners are activated by oil pressure correct?
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Old 09-23-2009
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shane, do you know what does it costs to replace the chains offhand?

was this only early y2k trucks or any sohc 4.0?
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Old 09-23-2009
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01 to 03 trucks had this problem. It would cost too much to have it done or if you do it since so many special tools are needed. I guess you can make the tools but if you are like me and don't have fab skills then you are screwed.

And yes they run off of oil pressure.
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Old 09-23-2009
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shane, do you know what does it costs to replace the chains offhand?
I believe the last quote I got was $1500. I got my brand new engine for that.


I intend to pull my old engine apart to take a peek at the guides to see if they were worn all the way through. And by pull my engine apart means remove the valve covers and thats it. lol. A local member who hasn't been on recently since his wedding, Focer, said his chain guides on his '03 were no where to be found...wore all the way through. And his truck never made the rattle until some morning last month and he tells me the rattle was worse than mine was.

Also, some '04 trucks report hearing it....but very very few and with high miles(150k+).
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Old 09-23-2009
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so my 08 should be ok? they resolved the issues?
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Old 09-23-2009
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Yes. But things do wear out over time. Meaning the part could fail at 200,000 or whatever. Supposedly Ford fixed the issue(or at least prolonged the life of the guides) in the middle of the 03 model year or possibly they fixed it in the 04 model year. I can't remember at this time.

If you look up an engine on car-part.com, 01-03 and 04-current are seperated.
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Old 09-23-2009
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so my 08 should be ok? they resolved the issues?
Supposedly the problem was resolved in 2003, but like mentioned earlier it seems that some 2003 and 2004 models were affected but its rare. Your 08 should be more than fine
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Old 09-23-2009
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My 04 w 110 000km/ 65k miles intermittently makes what I think is a noise from the timing chain. But only in the winter under load at about 3000rpm. From what Ive heard it sounds like and the conditions when it happens I can't imagine it being anything else. But I'm not too worried about it at the moment because I have only heard it a few times, plus I have a spare 4.0 ready to drop in if it does become a problem.
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Old 09-23-2009
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I made before vids of my truck where you can reallllly hear the sound. I should get them things edited and posted up. lol.
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Old 09-23-2009
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thanks. i know it's a little premature at only 30k but i just wanted to be sure incase i need to plan for it in the future.
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Old 09-24-2009
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mine also makes what i believe 2 be this noise but i am not sure. only recently made it a little this winter and now nothing.
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