RevRico PowerDork
5/9/20 1:03 p.m.

The engine with the engine out timing chain replacement, I don't remember if it's the DOHC or the other one. 

I've had a thread before where I inquired about the clutch seemingly catching at random points of pedal travel. It seems to have settled on catching at the top of the pedal travel now.

Well since we bought the house I've been putting the miles on, steady mix of mine field interstate and hilly back roads. It's been running fine for the most part.

Today I was heading down the minefield known as I70, about 65mph in 5th gear when I ran into a white out. No accidents or anything, but the truck started bucking a bit, like it was engine braking in 3rd gear then getting back on it again. 

It happened 4 or 5 times over the course of a mile, after the first time I kept one eye on the gauges and one on the road. There was no indication of anything happening on the tach or speedometer while the bucking feeling was happening. I dropped it into 4th for the last few miles to my exit and everything was fine.

On my way back to town I had Dana follow me, but it ran fine. I'd let a half mile open up ahead of me, mat it, and it behaved fine, clutch in clutch out no crazy revving or anything like that. Pulling off the highway to the hills, everything ran fine as well.

I'm not about to drop a grand on replacing the clutch, I'm trying to get rid of this thing after all, but I'm curious what could have caused this or why.

Not sure if its relevant, but my temp needle stayed on the low side all day. I had heat if I wanted it, and I don't know it's normal position, but it looked low.

That's after a 20 mile highway run at a stop sign. 

New battery, New battery wires, good gas from a known reputable and high volume station, New exhaust after the cats, and I'm fairly used to the road and it's quirks, so I'm ruling those options out. I guess it's just spitballing until I can make it repeat what it was doing. 

I consider traction loss an out there option. The 31 spline rear end has never broke traction for me before in much more snow and rain, and as ducked up as the road is, I feel like I'd have lost control if that was the case. 

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/9/20 1:54 p.m.

Seems like it's getting confused whether to turn the fuel off or not.  And given the work that you've done on the trans, I'd suspect the neutral and clutch switch, and add in the TP sensor as a suspect- too- as it's a key part of fuel shut off.

Can you get a OBDII recorder?  Most of those sensors are in there.  At the same time, you will see if the coolant temp is low or not- but the guage isn't real.

RevRico PowerDork
5/9/20 4:28 p.m.

In reply to alfadriver (Forum Supporter) :

Probably the best I can do is screen record torq or the fordsys app, or have someone drive while I'm connected to it. 

I just never had something like this happen before so I'm not sure where to start other than keeping a live feed going in the hopes it happens again. 

RevRico PowerDork
5/9/20 10:26 p.m.

Forscan Says this

===OBDII DTC None===
Successful DTC reading, no error codes found

Module: On Board Diagnostic II

===END OBDII DTC None===

===PCM DTC P0325===
Code: P0325 - Knock sensor 1 circuit malfunction

Module: Powertrain Control Module

Diagnostic Trouble Code details

Knock sensor 1 circuit malfunction

This DTC may be caused by :

Knock sensor (KS) / wiring.

Corroded or loose connections

Improper connection

Open or short in Knock Sensor circuit.

For additional information refer to:

Faulty or damaged PCM.

===END PCM DTC P0325===

===RCM DTC None===
Successful DTC reading, no error codes found

Module: Restraint Control Module

===END RCM DTC None===

===GEM DTC B1318===
Code: B1318 - The battery voltage level is too low.

Module: Generic Electronic Module

Diagnostic Trouble Code details

Battery Voltage Too Low

--- Possible Causes --------

- Battery Voltage below 9.6volts

-Suspect Battery state of charge Charging system

===END GEM DTC B1318===

===GEM DTC B1428===
Code: B1428 - Safety belt lamp circuit failure

Module: Generic Electronic Module

Diagnostic Trouble Code details

Safety belt lamp circuit failure

--- Possible Causes --------
  This code can be generated by:

 -Ground Short Driver's Seat Belt Lamp

-Open Driver's Seat Belt Lamp

-Suspect Driver's Seat Belt Lamp

-Suspect Generic Electronic Module

===END GEM DTC B1428===

===GEM DTC P0500===
Code: P0500 - VSS sensor circuit fault.

Module: Generic Electronic Module

Diagnostic Trouble Code details

VSS sensor circuit fault.

Open VSS circuit.

Shorted VSS circuit.

This DTC may be caused by :

Suspect VSS.

Worn or Damaged VSS drive gear on transmission output shaft.

Suspect PCM.

Faulty or damaged instrument cluster module.

===END GEM DTC P0500===

===RAP DTC B2276===
Code: B2276 - Less Than Two Transmitters Programmed

Module: Remote Anti-Theft / Personality Module

===END RAP DTC B2276===

===ABS DTC None===
Successful DTC reading, no error codes found

Module: Antilock braking system

===END ABS DTC None===

Knock sensor is interesting, I wouldn't think a nonturbo vehicle would have one. But the VSS output.. that could explain the bucking couldn't it?

Engine was running, cold start, no seatbelt just sitting in the driveway. I don't get the low voltage thing. 

alfadriver (Forum Supporter)
alfadriver (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/10/20 7:33 a.m.

In reply to RevRico :

Yes, the VSS could be the cause- it has a lot of inputs all over the place.

Antihero (Forum Supporter)
Antihero (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/10/20 7:37 a.m.

The engine with the timing chain issues is the 4.0 SOHC. 

dean1484 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/10/20 9:32 a.m.

Is that the same 4.0 V6 that was in the 90s explorers?  

RevRico PowerDork
5/10/20 9:52 a.m.

In reply to dean1484 :

I think the explorers got it in the late 90s, but didn't make the jump to the ranger until 01ish

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/10/20 10:57 a.m.

I'll spit out the common stuff.

First of all... you have the SOHC, not the OHV version.  2001 was the crossover year to SOHC.

Is the coil pack an aftermarket, or a Ford Motorcraft unit?  How about wires and plugs?  EEC ignitions in Ford products do not play well with aftermarket stuff.  It might seem like a good idea to do Bosch plugs and spiral core wires and an Auto Zone coil, but it isn't.  Ford parts from the counter are usually just a few dollars more than the parts store, and they are a must.  Performance upgrade?  Not really, but they'll work right every time.  You can get plugs anywere as long as they are irridium Motorcraft in the right application.  Some parts stores carry Motorcraft stuff so you might get lucky.  Amazon is your friend here unless you have a convenient dealership parts counter.  Just order your ignition parts by Motorcraft part number.  This is absolutely one application where stock ignition parts are the way to go.

Intake stuff.  These 4.0L are very particular about their airflow.  The throttle body is a big offender.  They might look OK from the outside with just a little carbon tracking, but often times the backside of the throttle is nasty.  Pull it off, take the TPS off, and soak it for 20 minutes in parts cleaner.  Scrub the crap out of it, literally.  While you're at it, pull the EGR and IAC to check for crusties.  Suck on the EGR vacuum hose and watch for proper operation of the valve.  If it's sticky or doesn't move, replace it.  You have to suck hard, but you should be able to get it to move.  The gaskets are paper for the TB and IAC, and that carbon printed material for the EGR.  All three are easily re-used if you're careful.

Dirty MAF will cause this and it's super easy to fix.  Take the MAF out of the housing being a little careful as it is an exposed super-fine filament.  Blast it off with a few squirts of MAF cleaner and re-install.  Other solvents work as well.  I have used brake cleaner with success, but some say that DeOxit or carb cleaner leaves residue that can cause problems.  Basically what happens is, the MAF filament gets coated and insulates itself.  The way the MAF works is by heating that filament.  Less air flowing over it means it is hotter and has more resistance.  When it gets coated and insulated, it reads as less air than is actually flowing past it.  The ECM injects less fuel until you get to a point that the O2 and MAF reach their opposite limits of +/- 20% and the ECM says "wait... WTF."

Fuel pump relay is a known failure point.  Often they present as no-start when hot, but they can cause the issue you're describing.  They get hot during operation and the coil starts drawing extra amperage.  That weak activator coil, plus years of the contacts getting corroded can make them fail.  Very hard to test since it only happens once in a while.  Mine I finally was able to diagnose because it wasn't making fuel pressure but I had a good crank position signal.  I swapped out the fuel pump relay with the EEC relay and suddenly got fuel pressure, but no crank signal.  Bingo.  New $11 relay fixed the problem.

Your temperature gauge is 100% normal.  Every Ranger/Exploder/B-truck reads the same way.  It's a semi-dummy gauge.  The temp sensor reads full range, so if you put it in a pot of water and heat it up, it will show a linear resistance change.  The gauge reads three basic resistance ranges; cold, normal, and too hot.  The assumption is that consumers like to see things cool, so the "normal" range shows on the low side of middle.  Best way to check is an IR thermometer on the t-stat neck to verify actual temps.

Fuel pump is also a known failure point, but in every situation I've seen, they just quit.  I suppose it's possible that you are in the failure period when it's slowing down and not providing adequate pressure, but the best way to test that is to just drive it.  If it craps out, you know.  Somewhere over around the brake booster is a fuel pump test connector.  I forget which one it is.  If you have a multi-meter that can do 20A, hook it between the battery positive and that test wire.  If you get low/no amps and no pump, the pump is toast.  If you blow the fuse in the multimeter you have a short - either in the wiring or the pump.  If you get X amps and proper fuel pump operation, your pump is fine.  That test is pretty easy to google.

It's also completely possible it was a hiccup.  The OBD won't trip a code until it has reached a threshold of a certain value depending on the fault.  For instance, an O2 heater circuit will trip a CEL right away because it is either in-spec or not, but a fuel pressure code might wait until it passes the threshold 3 times.  Other things like crank position sensor might not even set a pending code until 100 blips since that is a high-resolution sensor that gets hundreds of signals per second.

RevRico PowerDork
5/10/20 6:39 p.m.

I data logged a bunch of sensors today. Only a 3 mile trip, and I need to figure out how to actually review the file it saved, but I'm leaning toward the VSS as the main culprit. 

Didn't have the problem again, but sitting at red lights and stop signs, the odometer like to bounce up to 25 or so mph. 

Good, $30 part, and I have access to a lift. 


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