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New Here, New Ranger (to me)

  #1  
Old 3 Weeks Ago
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New Here, New Ranger (to me)

Hello All,

My name is Tim, this is my very first posting. Thank you in advance!

I just picked up a 2006 2.3 Ranger. The check engine light was on for a P0301, so I got it for a good price. I thought it would just be plugs, wires and a coil pack, but I was wrong.

I hate going to the shop, but I bit the bullet and went.. They did a leakdown test and a compression test and determined that Cylinder 1 is leaking, and its compression only hits 50 pounds.

The guy at the shop suggested a new motor (2500 to 5500 bucks depending on the motor). I asked if there was an alternative, and he said that the odds of it being a cracked head are 75%, and the odds of it being a valve ring are 25%.

First of all, do you guys agree with this diagnosis based on the information we have?

Secondly, I did see a head gasket replacement on this forum, and I am thinking I could get a new head and replace it myself. This will be the most challenging repair I have done personally, I need to do a lot more research but I might be able to do it.

Finally, I'll just put it out there: What would you do in this situation?

Thank you in advance,,

Tim
 
  #2  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Originally Posted by thyde View Post
Hello All,

My name is Tim, this is my very first posting. Thank you in advance!

I just picked up a 2006 2.3 Ranger. The check engine light was on for a P0301, so I got it for a good price. I thought it would just be plugs, wires and a coil pack, but I was wrong.

I hate going to the shop, but I bit the bullet and went.. They did a leakdown test and a compression test and determined that Cylinder 1 is leaking, and its compression only hits 50 pounds.

The guy at the shop suggested a new motor (2500 to 5500 bucks depending on the motor). I asked if there was an alternative, and he said that the odds of it being a cracked head are 75%, and the odds of it being a valve ring are 25%.

First of all, do you guys agree with this diagnosis based on the information we have?

Secondly, I did see a head gasket replacement on this forum, and I am thinking I could get a new head and replace it myself. This will be the most challenging repair I have done personally, I need to do a lot more research but I might be able to do it.

Finally, I'll just put it out there: What would you do in this situation?

Thank you in advance,,

Tim
Personally for me? , I’d just end up swapping the motor out myself......I would find me a good low mileage one from a salvage vehicle and swap it out.....The only way I’d mess with the motor that’s in it now is IF and I do mean IF I knew the previous owner took care of it.... Of course we can sit here and debate whether or not a ‘New salvage yard motor’ is any good, but there are things to look for, plus any reputable yard will give u a 3-6 month warranty on it..
 
  #3  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Thank you 07.

Can anybody point me to a good motor swap resource?

I've done a lot of different work on cars, but never as ambitious as a head or engine swap. I'd really appreciate it.

Thank you,

Tim
 
  #4  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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It's not going to cost you anything but time to pull the head off, with the head off see what the cylinders look like.

If the cylinders look good, then get the head checked and replace if needed, if the cylinders look bad replace engine.
 
  #5  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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Thanks SuperCab. I think that is what I need to do.

I'm looking through this:

How To: 2.3L / 2.5L head-gasket, timing belt, tensioner, water pump, etc. REPLACEMENT | Ranger Forum - Ford Truck Fans

I think I can skip the water pump / rad / thermostat removal (this guy had oil in his coolant, I don't think I have that yet), any comments?

My concern is with the timing part.

I'm going to do some more research on that.

But for now, I think the plan is to get the head off and have it checked for cracks.

Can I do that myself?

Thanks again all, I've never frigged with timing before so I need to learn some things before I get into a situation where I make the truck worse.
 
  #6  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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OK, I now see why I need to remove the water pump and thermostat :)

I think I'm getting an idea about the whole timing situation too.

If I remove the cylinder head, would I be able to do the piston rings with the motor in the truck if I take the oil pan off? It looks like yes with the head off, but I'd appreciate some input.

If I have the head off, my feeling is that for an extra hundred bucks or so I could replace all the rings and basically end up with a pretty much rebuilt motor.

Any thoughts?

Tim
 
  #7  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
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How do you post pictures on this forum? Imgur?

I'm going to start the tear down in a week or so, and I want to be able to post pictures so I can help people who are faced with this same problem for the 2.3L DOHC.

Thank you,

Tim
 
  #8  
Old 1 Week Ago
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How can I tell if this motor has variable valve timing or not?
 
  #9  
Old 5 Days Ago
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OK, I have the remanufactured head ordered. So far, I have the intake manifold, valve cover off. Fuel rail too. The things I need to do are get the exhaust manifold and timing chain off. Then the head itself obviously. I'm having trouble finding resources for these for this particular motor, the 2006 2.3.

Can anyone point me in a good direction please?

I need to get the AC compressor out of the way to get to the exhaust manifold bolts. That is a challenge I'm struggling with, and can't find good procedures for. The compressor is bolted to a kind of metal brace that goes from the head all the way down to the alternator. I'm not sure if I have to get that whole brace off or what. Anybody done this before?

Also, the timing situation is going to definitely cause an increase in my beer budget. Any help there would be sincerely appreciated too. From what I can see, I need to get cylinder 1 piston to top dead center at the same time as having the cams lined up with the grooves in the back exactly locked in, with the cams pointing at each other in the front. Make sense? Then reinstall the timing chain. This should result in proper timing.

I'll be very happy to have any tips or advice. I think I can do this, but it's a challenge for sure.

Thanks!
 
  #10  
Old 5 Days Ago
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OK, so I was able to get the alternator loosened in there (2 bolts in front, tap it out of the bracket with a piece of wood and a mallet), then I was able to get the AC compressor out of the bracket. With that out of the way, I could remove all 5 bolts holding the bracket on and get it out of the way. Now there is much, much more access to the exhaust manifold bolts. Two down, five to go. Fun stuff!
 
  #11  
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Exhaust manifold loose. Crankshaft pulley off. Next up is timing chain cover!
 
  #12  
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This is a great resource by the way, in case anybody is looking:

https://www.ranger-forums.com/dohc-2...lation-147282/

I need to make a map of the timing cover bolts so I remember where each one goes back. They are all different lengths.

The new head arrives this week, and I think next weekend I'll be able to get the old head off and the new head on, then it's timing, which is no small feat, and then reassembly, which for some parts is also no small feat. I'm very fortunate that this is not my daily driving vehicle, or else I'd be screwed. Since this is my truck, I can take my time. Definitely learning a lot about how the motor works doing this project.

Why do projects like this always arrive in February? It would be great for one like this to be here in, say, June.

Slainte!

Tim
 
  #13  
Old 4 Days Ago
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The camshafts must be removed and then you can take the head bolts out. I just did this. Then the head is removable. I'm calling it a night after getting the head bolts out and now next is disconnecting whatever is between the head and the firewall. That part of this project is for another day. But if you have any doubts about replacing a head or doing a head gasket, be inspired! I can do it and so can you!

Timing this engine is going to be something to pay careful attention to but I'm not scared. Take your time, stop when you need to and do it right.

I say this, and at the same time feel like holy crap what if I ruin this whole motor?

But if you don't try, you never know.

PS: I took pictures and labeled all the bolts from the timing cover. All different sizes and it's just a good idea to make a map of them.

Slainte!

Tim
 
  #14  
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Wow, what a pain. The head is finally completely off. There's a lot of reaching and obstacles.

So the new head will arrive tomorrow. The cylinders look good, meaning no holes or anything

I'm mentally moving to where I'm curious about how to time this motor properly. I ordered the tools to lock the camshafts (flat metal bar) and also to lock the crankshaft (special bolt that holds the crankshaft from passenger side of motor) at TDC, but I'm wondering when it comes time to torque the crankshaft bolt, do you just use the bolt in position for TDC on the crankshaft, then torque it down? Meaning, not the bolt that comes with the tool, but the bolt that goes through the hole in the crankshaft pulley?

Also, I have to move the camshaft sprockets from the old head to the new one. Is there anything I should be aware of here? I'm thinking I'll be able to get the sprockets into position with the chain on and the camshaft locked in place, then torque them down using the locked camshaft as the resistance, but am I missing something here?
 
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