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SOHC - 2.3L & 2.5L Lima Engines Discussions and Topics specific to the Lima 4 cylinder engines

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Old 10-29-2006
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plagued with engine issues

I am forced to look at either having my engine rebuilt, or buying a new one. Any suggestions here guys (and gals)? Basically, low compression in 2 cyl's, and constant power delivery issues (Low Power output) are killing me. It takes so much throttle just to accelerate, and again, alot of throttle just to Maintain speed. Slight inclines cause me to lose speed at an excessive rate, and if i was to climb a hill, you would think my truck was haulin' a 4,000 lb trailer behind it (full throttle, to the floor, and it still loses speed at a drastic rate).

This has been a constant issue and needs to be addressed soon, for sure. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 11-22-2006
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Have you actually done a compression check? Did you check to make sure the timing belt was correctly installed or that it hasn't jumped a tooth? (A belt out of time can lower compression on pairs of cylinders too, usually the compression reading would show two high and two real low). Any fault codes in the EEC system?
Any other symtoms, smoke, oil loss etc..? How many miles? Also, if it's an automatic, is the transmission healthy? Not slipping or binding? Good clean red fluid?

I have one 2.3L thats still running and it's got well over 600K, an still going strong, and another heading for 200K, so these engines do last. It's odd to see one die young unless it's been neglected or abused.
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Old 11-22-2006
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yep

well, to the best of my knowledge, it has either 153 or 253K miles on it. The tranny fluid was in great condition. I just did a tranny filter and fluid change about 2 months ago, and it is still running the gears fine (it is an auto). It doesn't bind, and I can still manually select the gears fine too. I have not done the Actual compression check and It never occured to me to check the timing chain. The possiblity of that is not high, but probable. The truck is a salvage title from Florida. I bought it for a grand, and she has been good for 2 years. I have yet to run a carfax on her. If someone has a carfax account, i will gladly give you the VIN to run it. Otherwise, since I have had her, I have done all the general maintenance to her. Kept her updated in a timely fashion and about the only thing I have't done is an engine rebuild. I just changed the diff fluid and inspected the Diff this past weekend, and she looked to be in excellent shape there. I can't think of what else it would be. I have even thought of replacing the wheel bearings (I know, call me stupid). Anyways, That is about all I can think of. Oh, by the way, all fuild changes are normal colors and smells. No abnormalties as of yet.
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Old 11-24-2006
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I would check the timing belt and do a compression check before you assume it needs an overhaul. These engines are pretty bullet proof with even only the most basic maintenance. Also, I would run an engine self test and check for codes.

I just bought a 94 2.3L cheap, the owner assumed that it had a bad engine and had spent nearly $1500 at a local shop replacing parts with no luck, this had two problems, 1st, the check engine light bulb was missing, and 2nd, the ignition module had been replaced with a cheap after market one and only one screw was installed and they didn't even tighten that one, so it ran but was firing the coil packs at random, and dropping the middle two cylinders on the right bank of plugs.
I replaced the bulb, the ignition module (had one), and cleared the codes and all is well. Who ever worked on it before had already replaced all 8 plugs, wires and both coil packs. I got the truck for $400 in near mint shape, the former owner just got frustrated trying to get it fixed.
The former owner had two shops give up and claim that it simply needed an overhaul. The compression is 170 PSI in all 4 cylinders, and the timing belt was replaced by the first shop that saw it about a month before I got it.
I have a 1980 2.3L pinto with 680,000 miles on it and it runs like new yet, thats only had basic service and about 6 timing belt changes, and two sets of valve seals since I got it with 60k on it back in 1984. That car has been used and abused, and even run off road a bit, but it still keeps going, the last I checked compression, it was down a bit and at 120 psi or so with the rear cylinder being the lowest by about 8 psi, but it runs strong and still passes emisions tests. I have had lots of these 2.3L engines and all have gone well over 200K, and not one has had an internal engine failure. I've worked on Fords for over 25 years now, and have owned a dozen or more 2.3L's, and if I was to see one with what looked like a bad engine, I'd have to really prove to myself that it really needed an overhaul before condemning the engine.
They are a rock solid motor and I've come to assume that they don't really have enough power to do much damage. Short of running a 2.3L out of oil or coolant, they just keep going and going and going.
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Old 11-24-2006
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gas mileage

If you don't mind me asking, what is your gas mileage on that one with the 600 K on it? I get at best 280 a tank... and that is sad!
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