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Old 08-10-2014
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Harrisonburg
Posts: 2
Icon5 Replacing Starter in 4.0 4x4 - wow!?!

I decided to replace the starter in my sons 2003 ranger and thought it would be as easy as my old 1987 2.9....wrong! I can't get to the upper bolt and have read everything from removing manifold, drive shaft, transfer case, 3 feet of ratchet extension, etc... Don't have a lift, so everything needs to be done "wheels on ground". What is the definitive method here (and no, taking it to a garage is not an option)? Thanks...
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Old 08-11-2014
Chris98's Avatar
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Thornton, CO
Posts: 705
Not sure on a sohc, but on my OHV it was a pain in the *** when I had to swap the transmission. Had to use a wrench through the wheel well, tire has to be removed at the very least and then I could only move it a 1/8 of a turn at a time.
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Old 08-11-2014
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Harrisonburg
Posts: 2
I pulled out the well liner and took off the wheel - snaked my hand back and around the exhaust and ratcheted it off after about 30 minutes of click, click, click... After it was loose, could not drop it down below because of the 4x4 U joint...then rotated it around and brought it up through the wheel well with about a nanometer to spare.... Thanks! Now time to put the new unit in - oh boy....
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Old 08-28-2014
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: San Carlos, CA
Posts: 55
Glad you found a way to do it. Changing the started on my 93 3.0 Ranger was a pain; not as much of a pain as on my 1980 Renault Le Car.
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Old 08-29-2014
sheltonfilms's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 631
SN95 Mustangs have the same issue. So bad that 90% of people replacing the starter leave the top bolt out.

My 96 GT had to have the transmission replaced by Ford. Changed the starter out one day and it took me forever to figure out that the top bolt wasn't even there. The Ford techs didn't even put it back in.
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