Ford Ranger Starting Problems

jorayjoray Member Posts: 6
edited June 2017 in Ford
i have a 94 ford ranger. my problem is sometimes when i have drive somewhere and turned veh off i go to start it again and it won't start. lots of juice but it won't start. it sometimes will be an hour before i can get it going again.most times soon as i call a tow it will turn over. i've had mechanics check it out and of course doesn't do it for them. any suggestions on what it might be???

SEE ALSO: This Video on How to Methodically Diagnose a Crank-But-No-Start Issue


  • bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    Why did you start a new topic?

    First thing I would check/change would be the fuel pump relay.
  • jorayjoray Member Posts: 6
    sorry new to this just thought i could get some suggestions. they said the fuel pump was fine so the relay is different??
  • jorayjoray Member Posts: 6
  • bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    Who said?

    Can you hear the fuel pump run when you first turn the key to ON. Without turning to START? When it is failing to start.
  • jorayjoray Member Posts: 6
    one mechanic showed me an area on the fuel pump to press and see if fuel would come out when this happened and it does. so its not the actual fuel pump.
    doesn't happen all the time, lately more so. but if you drive some where,turn it off then go to start it. it won't start so i sit and wait keep trying and eventually it will start. i have had two different mechanics look at it and of course it won't do it when they have the veh so they don't know what it is. i've had the truck since it was new in 1994 and never had a problem with it til now
  • bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    As I said previously, check the fuel pump relay.

    The relays are in the underhood power distribution box - a box with fuses, curcruit breakers, and relays.

    A relay is just a small cube that plugs into the box. There may be more than one. I don't know if they are marked as to what they control or not. I think a Ranger, if it has more than one, they are all the same. If there is more than one, change them around, wiggle them, press them in securely.

    If you change out the fuel pump one, and it has been failing, it might cure the problem. Of course, you have now put the misbehaving one on some other circuit...

    They don't cost too much. If you can ID the one for the fuel pump, I would just replace it and hope this fixes it.
  • jorayjoray Member Posts: 6
    thanks alot i'll give that a try and let you know.
  • aerialaerial Member Posts: 2
  • aerialaerial Member Posts: 2
    Truck has 2.9 Liter v6, fuel injected. Turns over freely. Eventually starts after maybe 60 seconds, some jockeying the acelerator. Replaced fuel filter. 92 K miles on vehicle. Runs ok once started. Suspicious of fuel regulator. Suggestions anyone?
  • jorayjoray Member Posts: 6
    hey i owe you beer next time your in canada!!!! thanks alot you saved me i'm sure a pile of money. it wouldn't start yesterday popped the hood wiggled the connection and it started right up.
  • moman9moman9 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 1998 ford Ranger 2.5L 4 cyl standered tranny.
    Im having starting problems.I bought a new Starter relay.Where is the starter relay hidden?Im begining to think it doesent have one.Please help !!!
  • nrs2429nrs2429 Member Posts: 1
    The starter relat on my ford ranger is located on the driver side fender inside part right next to the distrubution box. It may be on the starter itself. I don't know for sure, Ford's are weird.
  • shiftoloshiftolo Member Posts: 2
    I noticed my the theft light on my ranger started to flash rapidly when the car was running, it has become increasingly difficult to start at times, yesterday after I parked it for about 2 hrs. it would not start, I checked to see if it had fuel pressure and it did, I checked to see if there was spark to the spark plug but there was none. When I turned the key on the theft light flashed was flashing rapidly and the vehicle would not start. I replaced the coil but it made no difference. I disconnected the battery and re connected it, that did not help either. The battery had plenty of power to turn the engine over but there was no fire to the plugs, I finally had the vehicle towed after a couple of hrs. of trying. I also noticed that my power door locks were not operating properly recently. Today I went out to see if I could try something else that might fix the problem, but I wanted to make sure the vehicle was still not working, when I turned the key the vehicle started and ran just fine, there was no flashing theft light and it started the first time. Is there anyone who has experienced this problem? If so did you find a solution, is there any way to disable the theft system to prevent this from happening again? Thanks
  • cframescframes Member Posts: 1
    my ford ranger just quit one day and will not start. have plenty of starting power but the engine will not start.
    i replaced the fuel pump and it is working properly, what can be my problem?
  • nwx123nwx123 Member Posts: 1

    Did you fix it? I'm having the same problem with my Windstar!

  • raposoraposo Member Posts: 1
    My 92 Ranger intermittently will not start when cold. If I return a couple hours later and try again, It will start! This seemed to happen after the Idler Solenoid was replaced? Any Ideas??
  • mmathis2mmathis2 Member Posts: 1
    Having same problem with 98 mazda b4000 v6, have had it towed to dealer twice and after bringing it off flatbed truck it starts right up. having the same problem 4Dec06.
    any luck yet? :confused:
  • mikef0179mikef0179 Member Posts: 2
    Hi all,

    My 99, 4.0 ranger has a hard time starting when its cold out and it has sit over night. I usally have to crank it twice until it will start and when it dose start it hesitates a little and then idles fine. I have replaced the idle air control and the fuel filter. The engine runs good and strong. Could bad plugs and wires cause hard starting? Any Ideas:


  • njdevils7njdevils7 Member Posts: 4
    if the relay doesn't solve your problem than i would check to see where the fuel pressure regulator is. some have them under the hood but most in the gas tank on the fuel pump. one reason it will not start after you get back in is b/c it has to build pressure back up. the place where they showed you to see if gas comes out doesn't mean everything is working. you still must have the proper amount of pressure coming out.
  • jranger1jranger1 Member Posts: 1
    did you figure out what the problem was?having the exact same w/my 99.
    i'm guessing key chip sensor is faulty?
    easy fix?
  • wayne420wayne420 Member Posts: 2
    I hav a 1990 Ranger, starts perfect after let sit for a bit but to turn the truck off to get gas then when i go to start up and pull away the motor wurls over but wont go, seems to me like its flooding itself. i bought a new battery for it yesterday so i no its getting enough juice, but ihav also put a MAP sensor,throttle body on this truck, other times it just wont go and have to get it towed, when i jump start it it takes a while to get it going seems like its not getting gas at first then it spits for a bit then eventully it runs good and suggestions?????????
  • mosleyghmosleygh Member Posts: 2
  • mosleyghmosleygh Member Posts: 2
    I have a 1991 Ford Ranger, 4 cylinder, manual transmission. It will not start. When key is turned, it will click one time. It did this a month ago. Put in new battery, had starter tested at Autozone. Starter was ok. After putting starter back in, I jumped the solonoid and it started. Then it started every time until now. Now it has quit again. Same symptoms. Has new battery, cables are clean and connected well, starter is ok. When key is turned, it will click once, that is it. I can jump the solonoid and nothing happens. I thought is solonoid was bad, then jumping it would tell me because it would start, but it doesn't. Any ideas on what my problem is??? Note: I can push it off and crank it, so it is definetly an electrical problem.
  • fordtechfordtech Member Posts: 34
    When you say you are jumping the solenoid, are you jumping from large post to large post, or are you just puting a screw driver between the little post and big one? Some of them solenoids its pretty hard to get from big post to big post. I would use a set of jumper cables to help you here. Run the negative between the block and battery. Then connect the positive up, and touch it to the starter side of the solenoid. If you are jumping it correctly and nothing is happening check to make sure your starter is tight,and the mating surface between the starter and block are clean. I have seen oil leaks make for a hard start some times.

    One thing to remember. When autozone tests your starter. Its a no load test. Meaning if you are having problems with bad bearings in your starter it wont show up there. I would pull the starter again, and hold the gear in the nose, and shake it. If you hear a clunking sound, its not a good sound. You need to replace that starter, the bearings have gone bad. You can also just look at the bearings in the nose and see if there is alot of play there as well.

    One more thing. Is the positive cable getting warm to the touch when you are jumping the solenoid?

    If so I would also do a touch inspection on the ENTIRE length of the battery-to-starter positive cable. If it has rubbed on the exhaust or frame in a hard to see place, you wont notice it, but it will ground out the starter every time.

    Electricity chooses the path of least resistance, and that starter is a huge resistor when engaging the flywheel.
  • orozcocotaorozcocota Member Posts: 1
    when i try to start my truck i just clicks and other times it starts right up so i replaced the starter relay. with the car shut off i connect the red-black wire to the battery it turns over and acts like it wants to start but when you use the key it just clicks. then i replaced the starter solenoid and the truck does the same thing can you help
  • fordtechfordtech Member Posts: 34
    If your solenoid is just clicking, then you need to charge the battery or replace it. I would take to whatever battery store you use, and have them charge it.

    You need 100 amp hours to fully charge a completely discharged battery. So to figure out what you think you need, if you charge a battery at 2amps for 8 hours that is 16 amp hours. The faster you charge a battery the faster you wear it out. A fast charge (over 20amps) will cause the lead plates to vibrate and shake off material, and you risk overheating the battery and boiling out electrolyte.

    If your solenoid is clicking, I would say you probably need atleast 10-20 amp hours. So if you take it to wally world, and have them charge it on slow charge (2A), leave it with them for atleast 5hrs or all day. Then have them test it for you with a load. Have them burn off the top charge though, otherwise it will test wrong. They can do that by connecting it to a car with jumper cables and turning the lights and fan on in the car for about 10-20sec.
  • harley8harley8 Member Posts: 4
    Will not start. The truck is getting spark, Gas, etc. We have replaced the crank sensor and coil pack. You can hear the fuel pump as soon as you turn the key on. What's up ?
  • fordtechfordtech Member Posts: 34
    So how do you know its getting gas? Can it fill a quart jar in less than 30sec? How bout checking compression?

    Check your air filter... IAC might have a problem, can you pull the plugs and they are wet?
  • harley8harley8 Member Posts: 4
    can you pull the plugs and they are wet? Dry
    How bout checking compression? I put my finger in the plug hole and turned it over (it blows my finger out pretty good) :o)
    Can it fill a quart jar in less than 30sec? Pressure release valve (fu le)under the hood you open it and gas comes out, it real good
  • harley8harley8 Member Posts: 4
    When this first started... The truck would just die. You would let it sit and try again it would start. Then it would just die.Let it sit. Then it would start. Then it died and has never started again ?
  • fordtechfordtech Member Posts: 34
    What size engine is this again? I tried to find it but couldnt...
  • harley8harley8 Member Posts: 4
    Sorry 3.0 6 cyl. standerd
  • fordenvyfordenvy Member Posts: 72
    I have the same exact problem, and when it gets warm out it goes away, or when you had it started that day already it starts up fine. Mine is an '02 4.0. When I start it I just start it like a carbureator holding the gas pedal. But the engine still runs real strong even in this -5 degree weather. I suggest choke cleaner in the air intake. But I'm skeptical of doing this because I ruined a lawn mower that way before.

  • mikef0179mikef0179 Member Posts: 2
  • creisolcreisol Member Posts: 6
    Try cycling the fuel pump twice before starting. If that helps, it could be that your fuel pump is losing pressure or your injectors need a good flushing.
  • skinymphskinymph Member Posts: 2
  • skinymphskinymph Member Posts: 2
    Hey! So, I have a 2001 4x4 6cyl. 4liter Ford Ranger, and even when it's warm outside, I have trouble starting it. It starts and stalls two or three times before it gets going, and that's usually because I start giving it gas on the third time. Could it be the O2 sensors? I have no idea. Any thoughts? It seems to be getting worse.
  • hubbleshubbles Member Posts: 3
    I'm having what sounds like the exact same problem with my 2000 ranger (4.0L V6). Did you ever find a solution to this problem? (Starting, then sputtering and stalling out, particularly in cold weather)

  • mhilliermhillier Member Posts: 1
    Ok I got in the truck this morning to go to work -started the truck - the truck started but the starter did not stop trying to crank. I turned the key to the off position and the starter still ran... I attempted to pull the battery cable off but then it stopped. Did this twice before I gave up and used my wifes car to get to work. Very puzzled.... Where do I start.

    Thank you.
  • bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    -Bad starter.

    -Bad solonid. Aren't they separate on Fords? On the left inner fender?

    I don't know if Autozone, etc can check a solonid...
  • electraglide1electraglide1 Member Posts: 1

  • dino62dino62 Member Posts: 1
    4.0 SOHC, Almost every time i turn on my vehicle it turns off, the rpms wont go past 1000 anymore. I have to press on the gas for the truck to stay at 1000 rpms in order for me to drive. I've already changed the throttle body sensor, and i didn't feel a difference.
  • thadangerangerthadangeranger Member Posts: 2
    ok. i have an 84 ranger 2.8v6 it was running great when i came home last night but today it wont even turn over. battery reads 12.9v but when i turn the key the interior lights go out and wont come back on. the radio doesnt even come on. ive tried a jump box and jumper cables but the same thing...... i dont know where to start........
  • wesb3000wesb3000 Member Posts: 2
    i have a 94 ranger 2.3l 4cyl manual transmission that i cant get to start.i'm not getting any spark at both of my coil packs.i've replaced one of them recently.i've also replaced the crankshaft sensor,the ignition control module,timing belt,and the battery is brand new.ihave checked the relays and they are good.the wiring harness has no damage to it that the wires maybe cut.any suggestions
  • balebale Member Posts: 1
    I have a ford ranger xtr cab 3.0 manual transmission. It started sputtering for about a week coughing black smoke when it started and then it stopped starting. I changed the fuel pump and it worked great when it was cold and when it warmed up it would start to sputter again. I changed the spark plugs, distributor cap, rotor cap and fuel filter and It still refuses to start. Does any one have any idea what could be the problem.
  • theresacluelestheresaclueles Member Posts: 2
    94 Ford Ranger:
    My truck will periodically not start after being driven short distances. It will turn over like nothing was ever wrong with it if it sits for 30min-1hr.

    More frequently it has been also shutting off while I am driving. I will then have to sit for 15-30 Min before it will start again. Sometimes I'll be able to get where I am going after this, but other times it will shut off again in a mile or two.

    I have replaced Solonoid, engine coil, had a tune up and a new starter put on the truck.

    Nothing has fixed this problem, what else might it be?? :mad: :sick: :cry:
  • theresacluelestheresaclueles Member Posts: 2
    I have the exact same problem with my 94 Ford Ranger

    what the heck is it???????????
  • bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    Do you have fuel pressure?

    If not, the first thing to check is a fuel pressure relay. There are 2 or 3 relays by the main fuse box under the hood. If it is bad, the fuel pump will not work.

    There is also a fuel cutoff switch just under the edge of the carpet, on the 'hump', on the passenger side. This switch is to sense a rollover situation and shut the fuel pump down. Sometimes these malfunction.

    And, of course, the fuel pump itself inside the fuel tank.
  • disturbed2disturbed2 Member Posts: 1
    what was the response on the anti theft reset deal
  • bushbjbushbj Member Posts: 1
    I was driving down the road at 65 and the truck just stalled out. I tried to start it but it just cranked over and did not fire. I had it towed to a mechanic and fuel pressure is good and I am getting spark.He also checked all the fuses and the emergency fuel cut off switch. what else could it be to make it just shut off with no warning? I was thinking it was either my fuel pump whitch came out to be good, or my timing chain broke. do you have any suggestions to help me?

    I have a (94 ford ranger V-6 3.o automatic tranny
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