Need some advice with grounding kit. - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 07-07-2014
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Post Need some advice with grounding kit.

I just ordered me a 5-point ground kit off eBay and once I get it I was wondering if anyone knows where the best places to ground to would be. I know throttle body is one and alternator is another but just wondering if anywhere else would be the best for maximum performance of it would be. All ideas are appreciated.
Other places I've read are the (valve covers, firewall, exhaust manifold, and double up on ground ran from negative terminal) exhaust manifold I'm kinda sketchy about because they have some rust and rust means weak and I don't want to bust a bolt or thread. Let me know. Thanks
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Old 07-08-2014
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Existing grounds should be:
Large battery cable to engine block(for starter and alternator)
Smaller battery cable to Rad support(for head lights), could be a ground strap from rad support to inner fender

There should be a ground strap from the head to the firewall(for cab electronics/gauges)
Also a ground strap from Engine to Frame(for taillights and ??)

If you want to add more grounds then alternator is good.
Not sure what grounding the exhaust manifold would help though??

All the sensors and controls are grounded via wires to the computer so don't rely on vehicle engine/body/frame grounds.
Oil pressure switch and temp sender use engine ground.
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Old 07-08-2014
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IMHO... Most of the "Grounding Kits" are nothing more than some wires, cut to size, and some lugs. Sometimes a common gounding point Stud or Terminal Strip is used but most of the time you can buy all of the parts for less money.
If you decide to buy the parts, measure the wire routes you plan to use for the grounding wire and determine how much wire you need then add 10% to it. Buy good quality copper lugs, some anti oxidation paste, some good quality heat shrink with adhesive inside (Fastenal has a good line for a good price). Buy a terminal Stud, one single stud with sufficient length to hold all of your existing ground wires and maybe a couple more for future expeansion. If you choose a terminal Strip can be purchased with sufficient number of terminals for all of your grounding positions and rated for the amperage you will be subjecting it to.

Mount a good quality ground stud. This can be a HD Brass stud, a S/S stud or a bolt locate it close to the battery; you can also use an HD Terminal Strip. Make sure the stud is either long enough to accept all of the ground wire lugs or if a terminal strip, there are enough locations for all of the ground wires.

Next, using 4 or 6 gauge wire minimum (I would stick to the larger size allowing for a good current return path) run the following ground wire to the stud:
1) negative terminal on battery
2) alternator body
3) frame
4) body/firewall
5) engine, can be the head or the block
6) starter body/mounting bolt
Additional ground wires:
7) rear of vehicle frame/rear mounted accessories
8) internal cab grounding point
9) any electrical components that need a good electrical return path, each one should have its own return for the electricity.

Make sure:
All wire lugs are sized per the wire used and the terminal lug used.
All lug should be crimped properly and securely to the wire, give a slight tug on the lug once you crimped it to make sure.
All lug wire connections are cleaned and covered with a good quality heat shrink with adhesive inside that melts and seals the connection when it is shrunk.
All wires are long enough to avoid contact with heated and moving parts.
Secure all wires.
All lug connection on metal parts should be cleaned to bare metal
Use a non corroding anti-oxidation paste on all metal to metal connections

Last edited by Scrambler82; 07-08-2014 at 11:31 AM.
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Old 07-08-2014
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Thanks scrambler that is a lot of good information
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Old 07-09-2014
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In my 1982 Jeep Scrambler, I ran a heavy gauge wire from the battery to my common ground point on the fender well, thru the firewall and mounted two terminal blocks on the body, one at the firewall and one at the rear of the body.
Both terminal blocks are isolated from the body and both used for any and all grounding of components in the vehicle.

If you have problems with most electrical components, inside or outside the cab you can bet the is a good chance it is the grounds.

Good idea to redo them and add in extra, can't hurt, can only help the components.

Luck with the project.
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Old 07-09-2014
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Two more questions I'd like to ask. I been doing research on the kits and new points I found were to the transmission and could possibly make shift point better which I would greatly love mine are way off! And the other do the grounds have to run back to the negative terminal can I just bolt to another points that will run back to the neg terminal? Thanks
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Old 07-09-2014
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My personal opinion is the grounds should run back to the battery or the new common ground point.
Reason is to keep the current return path as clean as possible, less connections less problems in the future.
Anything electrical component needs a good supply line and return line for the electrical current to run in, the path of least resistance and the ground wire size should be the same or larger than the supply line.

If you want to use the frame as a ground buss, as a lot of people do, it should work better than before.

As the throttle body ground, a new transmission ground should add something to the mix, can't hurt.

Frame mounted connections always corrode and rot away leaving either no connection or an intermittent connection causing havoc with your electrical system. Sometimes a bad ground in one component will show up as a problem in another and the way the new computerized systems are working back feeding grounding points is a bad thing.

To me I use the "KISS" method, keep it simple by running two wires to each component, a supply line, called a feed or power wire, and a ground line, called a ground wire (lol).
If and when you have a problem you can see if the main wiring is ok, you can check the main wires for good connections and flow quickly and easily.

Sorry for getting wordy, happens to me all the time.

Take your time, make sure you have good connections - ie clean and tight, and make sure all of the feed and ground line are properly sized for the correct flow.

Ltr,

Added: since you are redoing the ground from the frame to the battery, adding grounding points along the frame will probably work out.
If you do not plan on keeping the truck very long then it shouldn't matter it will work for you for a number of years.
If you intend to keep this truck for a while, as I do, you will want to setup a grounding system that will last for a long while and the only way to avoid "frame corrosion, rot and bad connections" is to eliminate the frame from the grounding system.

Also, keep in mind, this is my way and not always the acceptable way, I tend to over do things, take longer to do things but I usually do not have to redo things.

Ltr

Last edited by Scrambler82; 07-09-2014 at 06:27 AM. Reason: Spl chk
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Old 07-09-2014
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That's exactly I how I do things spend a little extra time but I don't have to worry later on I will never get rid of this truck(: so I do the best I can to keep it smooth
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Old 07-10-2014
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Is grounding an issue with the Ranger? My 2000 with 213K on its odometer has no issues with any of its electronics.

I suppose though that if a person starts adding sound improvements or serious lighting, and does not do their homework in the way of noise suppression, power requirements, or placement, its easy to simply blame a "ground". I have read in many posts where folks will route a power lead straight to a simple on/off switch to an item that has a large amp draw...in basic electrical knowledge, this is a huge no/no, and often a ground gets blamed for a failure.

If your a serious off roader, I can possibly see factory grounds being an issue if they are getting wet, banged around, or caught/snagged by surface obstructions.

But for general road use, aren't the factory locations good as they are?
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Old 07-10-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bucko View Post
Is grounding an issue with the Ranger? My 2000 with 213K on its odometer has no issues with any of its electronics.

If your a serious off roader, I can possibly see factory grounds being an issue if they are getting wet, banged around, or caught/snagged by surface obstructions.

But for general road use, aren't the factory locations good as they are?
The short answer, yes, usually !

From my experience, I have found most electrical problems in older vehicles, vehicles driven off road and wet environment vehicles, come down to grounding issues.

If you can't find the problem in your electrical system, start checking the grounds.
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Old 07-14-2014
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Okay I installed two of my grounds out of the five I got. Throttle body was a bust because duh made out of aluminum and transmission also made out of aluminum so fail on both so I just check all current grounds my ground the block to the firewall looks little oily but looked ok after cleaned it off and I added ground to the frame to my headlight ground and ground to my firewall and seemed to allow my electronics to work a little better not much results but seems like it did a little.
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Old 07-14-2014
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First off to get full gain from this kit you need to install all new ground wire no matter what you think is good or bad.

You are not only replacing the ground wire with new connections, better cleaning connections but also you are increasing the wire gauge size, everything works together.
Install all the grounds, the body to frame or grounding stud is a biggy, put in the new one.

Also, aluminum will conduct electricity, why the Duh ?

You may not need a 2 or 4 ga wire to the Throttle Body, a 10 gauge fine stranded wire will work considering the amount of current going to be used, same on the trans but connect a new ground wire from these items as you we thinking. Make sure you get a good clean connection and use the anti corrosion paste on, in and everywhere on the connection.

Your theory on the added ground wires to certain components is good just make sure to clean the connection area, get the dirt and corrosion out of the connection.

Some of the added ground wires will pay off in the long run, when some people will have a problem with their headlights yours will keep going, your bulbs will last longer too thanks to a better current flow you created with the new wires.

Do the complete package and the added grounds you want it will pay off !

p.s. The added ground wires may not show an immediate gain in performance but the engine will start easier with the added ground to the starter, the battery will last longer because it isn't trying to work through the dirty connections, the alternator will put out full current and the electronics will perform as designed without skipping, low output, etc.
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Old 05-12-2015
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This is a great thread!

I would think that an upgrade to the Ranger's Charging system wiring would be going to 4GA, since stock is 8 or higher.

I'm not a big fan of crimp-only when building cables; I crimp the new connectors/lugs on, then solder, then shrinkwrap. soldering bonds the metal together for full connection. I also use a dialectric on metal-to-metal connections to prevent corrosion degrading the connection.

I hadn't considered terminal blocks before...
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