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Ford Ranger Starting Problems



  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    Fords don't have solonids on top of the starters. That 'relay' is the solonid.
  • I have a 1988 Ranger V6 Manual I bought new with 170K miles now and it just developed this not starting thing when the weather is warm last summer. All winter it started right up. Only when the weather is warm. It cranks but won't turn over. If I touch the gas at the right time it starts and runs fine. Logic tells me something is expanding when it's warm causing the problem. Does that make any sense to you car guys? I remember a bunch of years ago had trouble starting and someone mentioned changing the inertia switch and it fixed the problem. It's been too many years to recall if it was the same problem. I have a Chilton guide for '83-91 models that I can copy pages for anyone if it helps figure out the problem. I'll be watching this for information simple enough us amateurs can fix it. :confuse:
  • Hey, I just wanted to thank you for your help. I changed the relays and she starts up every time now!
  • schoonover2009schoonover2009 Posts: 1
    edited May 2011
    about 6 months ago my truck died and it wont start unless i put it on a battery charger for a little while and then it will start and hold a charge. if i leave both battery cables on over night the truck drains and i cant start it again. i have replaced the starter solinoid, battery and the alternator. the motor, starter and the ignition all work fine, im thinking that theres a short somewhere but i dont know how to find it. i know that when i get it started if i turn the radio on that my volts drop way down and also my tail light acts up sometimes, but i dont know what to do?? any ideas?
  • Ford Ranger XLT, Standard Cab, 2-wheel drive
    Year: 1991
    Engine: 3.0L, EFI
    Manual transmission

    The engine cranks good, but does not start. There is no fire at all.

    Back story:
    I had a bad alternator, which I changed a week ago or so. After replacing the alternator, everything was back to normal...engine started and ran as it always had...a little rough.

    So, I decided to change the distributor cap, rotor, plug wires, plugs, and coil, since they are all so cheap. After changing everything, it started and ran exactly the same as before changing everything. FYI, the old plugs on the passenger side had the electrodes missing, lol. I replaced the wires to match the exact order of the old cap.

    Anyway, after looking at the manual, I noticed the wiring of the plugs was incorrect on the passenger side, so I fixed that, and tried to restart, but the engine would not fire. It would crank fine, but no fire.

    Okay, so that is how I got where I am now.

    1. Engine cranks, but will not start. No engine fire whatsoever.
    2. I can smell a small amount of fuel odor as I continue to crank it. This makes me think the fuel system is working, and I'm just getting a build up of unburnt fuel in the engine.

    Fuel pump: I can hear the pump start like normal. I don't have a fuel pressure gauge, but I did press down on the Schroeder valve with the key on, and fuel sprayed out. I may run down and get a gauge later to test it.

    Spark: I tried grounding the plugs on the driver side and saw spark while cranking. I can't really tell if the spark is strong enough to ignite the fuel, but it doesn't seem like it would take much.

    I have spark and fuel, so why won't 't it start?
    I tried squirting a little fuel into the intake while cranking, and still no engine fire.
    1991 Ford Ranger XLT
    3.0 engine
    manual transmission
    2-wheel drive
    standard cab
  • jaystarkjaystark Posts: 1
    I have the same truck as you do and i'm having the same problem as you are but I had to put a clutch in first ans found out that was not the troble so I put in a slave cylinder and then I had to put in a tranny 3 time's and that fixed that problem so I could drive the truck. So I got the truck running but it rain real bad like it had a vacuum leak. but a couple of plug wiers fell off when we took the dis cap off so we put them back on and then check the firing order and every thing was ok.did you every find out what was wrong? and if you did would PLEASE let me know what the problem was and how you fixed it.
  • bessie5bessie5 Posts: 1
    I have a 98 Mazda B4000 that just developed problems starting when the engine is warm. It starts up beautifully first thing in the morning, but once it's warmed up, I'm doomed if I turn it off. Makes it hard to get gas and groceries. It can be kick started, but not jumped. It seems that the starter relay is a little loose in the power distribution box when this has happened. The safety switch under the clutch seems to be working, or at least I can hear it operate when I push on it. I'll get some new relays, but any other suggestions welcome.
  • jayhonjayhon Posts: 1
    unhook the battery, and hook it back truck has done it a couple times just needs to be reset, im assuming i have a short somewhere which could also be your problem
  • on the drivers side witch is witch? on the relays?
  • Hi,

    I have a 1997 Ford Ranger 2.3- 4 cylinder and it keeps breaking the starter, either the bendix or nose cone of the starter. It has only started doing this after the timing belt went out. I have had the belt fixed, it is in time, new fly wheel, and multiple starters put on it. It has a real hard start. It shakes the whole engine trying to start. It keeps back like it is out of time. Any ideas? I can only keep a starter on it for a few months at a time. Runs well enough once you get it started though.
  • irky2irky2 Posts: 1
    Oh yes, I recall the time when I had the same problem with my 67 GMC 1/2 ton. I would inspect your flex plate, and consider changing it.
  • hughes03hughes03 Posts: 1
    I have a 2005 Ford Ranger with a 2.5L 2wd manual. It will start after sitting over night. Then I will drive for awhile thne it will act like it is not getting any fuel to it. It has over half a tank i dont know if it has a bad relay or a bad fuel pump. i dont know how to tell either way when it quit the last time i put a fuel pressure gauge on it and it read nothing. lead me to beilieve that it could be a fuel pump i was reading online and the relay crossed my mind. Someone please help me what this could be. Thank you
  • My Ranger would not start last Sunday. No click, lights full on, battery good. Experts stated it was battery. Replaced solinoid. No ignition from ignition switch until we bridged solinoid. With screwdriver bridging solinoid, engine started, no problem.

    Experts now tell me only way to work around the problem is to run a switch directly to the solinoid switch and drill hole in engine bulkhead, then bridge solinoid via switch.

    Any suggestions on a real fix rather than a jury rigged fix? Experts tell me the fix would be very expensive.
  • rstaglrstagl Posts: 1
    03 Ranger same problem. can go weeks without problems. Noticed when driven and engine hot, short turn off, will not start. tries to and very irradically and at best will sputter then stall. Wait 20-30 minutes and will start right up, runs fine.

    I'm looking for suggestions as well
  • i just went thru this on my 94 ford ranger, replaced the selinoid under the hood and it didnt change anything, it was the solinoid on the starter itself. there are two on a ford ranger.
  • tnvolstnvols Posts: 1
    edited August 2011
    Hello. I have a 1994 Mazda B4000 that I have had for a year and a half. It has been giving me some problems with starting, but its on and off. Over the past week I have had it at 2 different shops. As you would imagine its started every time with both shops and the diagnostic showed no codes. No one has a clue whats going on. however, it does seem to only happen during the summer. I had to have it towed from work the other day. I did unplug and replug the fuel pump relay, but put it back in the same spot. Sounds like I've got the same symptoms you did. I might go ahead and buy new relays. But if it happens again I'll try swapping the relays. Thanks.
  • A few things came to mind when I read your complaint. When your timing belt went out did they say you did more damage? On many engines when the timing belt or chain breaks The pistons usually slam right into the valves. That's since they are out of sequence now from the broken timing belt. There are a few things they should check. 1st check the compression in all of the cylinders. While you or the mechanic are doing that. Inspect all spark plugs. With all spark plugs removed try to rotate the engine over by hand. When you do this make sure that the battery is disconnected for safety. Rotate it iver 3 to 5 times. Just to get a good feeling what when and why the engine is vibrating. I would think that either a valve got bent and or a connecting rod. Something of this nature. These are all educated thoughts that may cause this. If something is bent that could even cause the starter to fail. When it hits that part that is diffcult for the starter to rotate past this. Then the sudden starter resistance while it's rotating the engine. Might cause the teeth of the starter suddenly stop and cause some sort of damage. I hope this helps you out.
  • ok what you have already replaced both the starter and solenoid there is a heavy click but it wont even try to start
  • i have a 94 ford ranger that when u turn the key to start it it clicks once but then does not even try to turn over i tried jumping the selinoid it will try to start 1/100 times but to get it running i have to coast start it and it runs fine any suggestions???
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