'89 4x4 turns over, but won't start - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 10-26-2008
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'89 4x4 turns over, but won't start

So I've been working on my truck on and off for a while now. it used to start and run pretty decently, but had suspension issues (which i fixed). after sitting for a short time, it decided to quit running. it would click and grind when i turned the key. so i replaced the solenoid. then it would click but not grind. then i re-replaced the starter solenoid (first one cracked) and put in a good battery. now it will crank over, but unfortunately, it still still wont start.

i havent figured out if it is an electrical/spark issue or a fuel issue.
i have yet to try starting fluid - where exactly do i spray it? (i'm a total novice..)

Secondarily, how do i check for spark? Do I check at the ignition coil, which I think is located on the drivers side front fender area? And what is the process for checking the spark?

Also, is it possible this is a starter problem? or would i not even get the engine to crank if it was the starter?

thanks

edit: ps. it's an '89 ranger 4x4 V6 2.9
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Old 10-27-2008
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If the motor is turning over it's not the starter.

You can buy a cheap spark tester at an autoparts store. You remove the wiring boot off the spark plug and plug this thing in-line. (in between the wire and the plug) If you have spark you will clearly see it.

As far as starting fuild.. you'd remove the intake tube and spray it into the intake with the throttle body slightly open. Or you might be able to remove a vacuum hose and spray it in that way too.

Rich
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Old 10-27-2008
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ok, thanks. hopefully i'll be able to test that out today. am i right in assuming that i want to use the spark tester at the spark plug end of the wire and not at the distributor cap end? and does it matter which spark plug i'm testing (some are easier to get to than others)?
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Old 10-27-2008
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Could be your alternator, might be junk too.. dunno Somthing similar happened to my other 95 ranger, it would make this grinding noise when I would turn the key, turned out it was my sept belt pully was junk and the alternator was junk.. but it started though :-\ but both items were going so i replaced them now it runs like a champ.
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Old 10-27-2008
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It doesn't matter which spark plug you test. Which ever is easiest. They all should be sparking. If you have spark, check fuel, make sure you hear the fuel pump prime when you turn the key to ignition.
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Old 10-27-2008
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yea u want it betweeen your spark plug and wire...and some are harder to get to than others but you need to test em all...also if you dont feel like spending any money you can take the spark plug right out and put it in the spark plug wire n lay it somewhere where it can arc to something n if it sparks then its good but its not the greatest way to figure out iif your plugs are any good but it is the cheapest lol
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Old 10-27-2008
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make sure when checkin fuel pump operation you turn the key to koeo (key on engine off) n you'll hear the pump prime...
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Old 10-31-2008
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ok, so it looks like a fuel issue. i used some starter fluid and the truck started for a second, so it must be getting spark.
i think it might be the fuel pump relay. the relay fuse is still intact, but when i used a voltimeter at the fuse's pins, i got no reading. all the other fuses (this is in the engine fuse box, not the cab box) gave appropriate voltage readings. is it correct to assume that the relay fuse should also show voltage? and then is it right to assume that the relay is fried if the fuse is not getting any current? if the relay is dead, should the fuse still be intact?

fyi, i've already checked the fuel shut-off switch and it's fine.

thanks

Last edited by unisphere; 10-31-2008 at 08:08 PM.
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Old 11-02-2008
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thanks for the responses.
turns out that at some point "someone" put the EEC relay fuse back in the wrong slot...
so no fuel pump relay or anything was actually needed. truck starts fine now, now i just have to have someone fix my rear axle seal leak...
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