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Old 01-14-2016
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: San Carlos, CA
Posts: 55
Clunk from under front, right side

My 1993 Ford Ranger XLT, auto. trans., 3.0 liter V6, developed some time ago a clunk.

It happens in sync with engine vibrations (rocking at idle), usually when started from cold. It is not a rattle. My guess is that part of the exhaust system is hitting the chassis. It goes away after the engine warms.

The problem developed after extensive work on the emissions system, during which the catalytic converter was replaced. All flexible engine mounts (two in front, one under the transmission tail shaft) have also been replaced.

I've crawled underneath but can't see well enough in the confined space to see evidence of interference.

Probably I should take my truck to a shop with a lift and have a more relaxed look.
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Old 01-15-2016
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 7,601
Pop the hood, start engine then put it into Reverse with foot on the brake, see if you hear the clunk as trans engages and watch for engine movement.
Now shift into Drive.
Engine movement should be minimal with new motor mounts, so exhaust shouldn't really move much.

Shift back a forth a few times, give it a little gas in gear to see if engine lifts, showing loose motor mount.
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Old 12-27-2016
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: San Carlos, CA
Posts: 55
No exhaust system clunk

I found the source for my January 2014 post "Clunk from under front, right side."

Not the exhaust system, not from faulty engine mounts. Quite simple and unexpected. The clunk comes from the passenger seat, which I guess is loose. I confirmed the source by pressing on the seat when I heard the clunk. No more clunk.


1. Lean against the seat

2. Have someone sit in the seat

3. Carry something heavy on the seat, such as an engine block

4. Fix the seat mounting

I found the solution after inspecting the cooling system (regular inspection, during which I found a leak from the thermostat housing), the suspension, brake lines, and exhaust system. No sign of exhaust system interference with nearby parts. Started the engine to see if I'd forgotten to connect something such as the throttle (lubed the throttle cable end ball joint), and noticed the clunk.

Moral: if the probable sources of a problem aren't at fault, think of something else.
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