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Old 08-07-2015
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Kelowna, British colombia
Posts: 9
Buying a ranger

Hey guys, I'm looking at buying my first car. I want a ranger because it's really the only truck I can afford. I've been looking around and found a few I have my eye on. Do you have any suggestions at what I should look for when buying a ranger? ( what kind of problems do these trucks have?) im looking at buying one with about 100000-150000 km on it (roughly 50000-80000 miles) and like tenish years old. Any help would be much appreciated :)
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Old 08-07-2015
momule's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Washington, MO
Posts: 76
Good luck on your first purchase Alex. The best advice that I can give you is to read as much in these forums as you can. Rangers are very good little trucks across the board and are simple enough to do most of the work on yourself. The trucks don't have any one shortcoming that stands out so the best you can do to protect yourself is to try to purchase from a trusted source or have an experienced, knowledgable helper (mechanic if possible) check it out before you buy. Please don't be swayed by fancy stereos or big tires because these trucks work best when they are left stock and you never know what kind of problems you are getting into with aftermarket lift kits or poorly installed electronics. Buy as much nice stock truck as you can afford and add stuff to make it yours after you know you have any kinks worked out. I'm 60 yrs old and have owned probably 2 dozen used vehicles over the years so this is good advice that will save you money.

You live in one of the prettiest places on earth. I know because I used to live in Penticton and then in Vancouver.

Last edited by momule; 08-08-2015 at 12:01 AM. Reason: added comment
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Old 08-08-2015
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 7,606
If you want the bigger V6, 4.0l SOHC, then make sure it is in a 2005 or later Ranger, 2004 and earlier could have timing chain issues.

Look at brake pedal rubber pad and drivers seat wear, that can tell you "true mileage" vs what seller or odometer is saying.

Manual transmissions need clutches but are still a better option than automatics, IMO.
If truck has an automatic or that is what you want, pull out the dip stick and look at the color of the fluid, and smell it.
If trans fluid(or engine oil) has just been changed it could be just good maintenance, or a sign seller is covering something up.
Ask when fluids were last changed.

When you turn on the key(of any vehicle) make sure CEL(check engine light) comes on, and then goes off, you would be surprised how many "car flippers" disconnect or blank out that bulb to hide the fact CEL is on all the time, indicating a problem.

Ask if you can take the vehicle to have it inspected, Ford and other places offer 100+ point inspections for used vehicles, for $150 or so, you pay of course.
Whether you do have it inspected is up to you, but asking if you can will tell you alot, lol.
And an inspection can pay for itself and even more.
If seller is asking $8,500 and you have it inspected and find a couple of minor issues you can show them the results and offer $8,000 or whatever.

YES, I am a cynic, purchased many used vehicles over the years.

Beware of low miles, just below average is fine, alot below means one of two things, neither is good for you.
It was either broke down and sitting
Or it was just sitting.
Engine and drive train seals need to be kept moist with oil, this happens when they are driven, when they sit for months at a time gravity does it thing and when driven the seals can tear abit on startup, it adds up to premature wearing out, or in the case of valve guide seals they just dry out and crack.

Vehicles driven only 5-10 minutes at a time get sludgy, they never heat up fully to burn off water vapor in the engine, this causes a sludgy build up inside the engine.

Ford Rangers have the PATS(passive anti-theft system), this is part of the computer system and requires PATS keys to start engine.
PATS key has an RFID tag inside the handle, it requires no battery, make sure you get at least TWO working PATS keys with the vehicle, with 2 working keys you can add a 3rd key yourself, which you should do right away, so if 1 is lost you still have 2.
If you only have 1 PATS key you have to pay a locksmith or Ford to add a 2nd key to the system.

PATS has nothing to do with keyless entry or alarm systems, it is "passive" anti-theft, it disables fuel system and starter motor if "known" PATS key is not used to start engine, 3 or 4 PATS keys are programmed into the computer at the factory, these are then "known" keys that can start engine.

Last edited by RonD; 08-08-2015 at 12:43 PM.
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Old 08-10-2015
Myk Rian's Avatar
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Hartland, Mi
Posts: 12
I used Cargurus to find mine. If you weren't so far away from Michigan, I'd offer you my 97 for a couple grand.
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