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Old 10-14-2017, 11:44 AM   #61
wrath of kyle
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The mystery continues. The exhaust shop said that I had excessive backpressure, and they wanted $600 to replace the cats alone. I limped the truck back home and ordered the new cats and a cat back system for about $550. I got the cat pipe yesterday and threw it on the truck and started it up without any mufflers. It still runs choppy, and unfortunately the first cat starts to glow red after only a few minutes of running.

So, something is causing the truck to run rich. I think I can eliminate the spark plugs and wires, as those are both new. And, unless the ignition module is labeled incorrectly from the factory, I have the plug wires going to the correct cylinders. Could the ignition module be bad? It doesn't seem to fire on all 4 cylinders. And when I first got the truck the codes it showed were misfire on cylinders 1 and 3. Plus one other code which I don't recall, but it was a sensor on the intake manifold.

Or, is maybe an injector stuck open and flooding the exhaust with gas? Maybe the computer is bad? I'm open to suggestions and advice. I think I'm going to jerry rig a muffler onto the header so I can run the truck for more than 5 minutes and try and diagnose the problem. Or bite the bullet and take it somewhere. I don't want to destroy the new cats by running it as it is.
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Old 10-14-2017, 12:11 PM   #62
Soledad
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At this point I think it would be best to get forscan loaded up on something and plugged into the ECU to see what the sensors are telling you.

Maybe the CHT sensor is bad?
Maybe you've got an injector hung open which wouldn't be to hard to diagnose. See the quote below.
Maybe, the MAF is bad or not reading correctly?
Maybe timing is off?
Maybe there's a massive vacuum leak although I'm sure you'd hear that.
Maybe the coil is bad or the wiring to it?

Most of that can be diagnosed using forscan.

I am borrowing this from a very intelligent fellow named RonD on another Ranger forum:
Quote:
On the surface it reads like you are getting extra fuel in the intake manifold.
Rough idle after starting then smoothing out as extra gas burns off
Stalling after HIGH engine vacuum, deceleration, extra fuel sucked in and flooding engine
Then starting only after opening throttle plate to let more air in, "mashing on the gas"

Fuel injection computers all have a "Clear Flooded Engine Routine"
Key on
gas pedal to the floor and held down
Crank starter motor

Engine should NOT start, not even fire, if gas pedal is held down
Fuel injectors are shut off
As soon as you release gas pedal injectors will start again

TPS(throttle position sensor) gets 5 volts from computer, it sends back under 1 volt if throttle plate is closed, and over 4.5volts if throttle is wide open(WOT)
(just as a heads up, if TPS should short, it will send computer 5volts all the time, that will cause a no start, because injectors are off)

To start the "Clear Flooded Engine Routine" the computer must be on(key on), if computer reads above 4.5volts from TPS with engine at 0RPMs it will shut off the fuel injectors but leave spark on, gas pedal to the floor(WOT).
So when you try to start the engine there is no fuel so it will not start.

If it fires in "Clear Flooded Engine Routine", then there is fuel coming into the intake, check these things:
'99 uses Returnless fuel system, so fuel pressure at the rail should be 65psi, have you tested it and does stay above 50psi with key off?
Fuel pressure should stay for a few months, not just minutes or even weeks....months
Returnless has a pulse damper at the end of the fuel rail, it will have a vacuum line attached, check it, if there is fuel in that line then replace damper.

Next is fuel injectors, pull out #1 spark plug and check if it has black residue, rich burns, from leaking injector
You can also use "Clear Flooded Engine Routine", disable spark(unplug coils), crank engine using "Clear Flooded Engine Routine", pull out spark plugs wet spark plugs have leaking injectors.

Ford injectors get 12volts when key is on, the computer grounds each injector to open it, if one of these Ground wires should short to metal..............then injector would open.
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Last edited by Soledad; 10-14-2017 at 12:15 PM..
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Old 10-14-2017, 03:07 PM   #63
TIMMA
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See if the [4-post]ignition coil has any cracks in the plastic. If it's misfiring on 2 cylinders that will get your cats to glow pretty fast, which destroys the cat's ability to work correctly. It's strange that it would be cylinders 1&3 though, I would have suspected a cylinder pair like 1&4 or 2&3 since this is a wasted-spark setup (cylinder pairs; the ones that hit TDC together spark at the same time, even though one just finished its compression stroke and the other just finished its exhaust stroke). Since it sounds like the same problem affected both engines, start thinking about what parts were re-used.

Running rich will not create hot exhaust-- it actually cools things down.

I may have a spare ECU, but you would need an enhanced scan tool to program your keys to it.
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Old 10-15-2017, 08:14 PM   #64
wrath of kyle
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I cranked the engine over with the gas pedal to the floor and nothing, which is what was supposed to happen. The TPS had the proper voltage as well. Thanks for the info and write up Soledad.
I didn't want to just throw money in the thing not knowing what was wrong and buy parts that it may not need, so I checked the pick and pull and there was a 2.3 Ranger that hadn't been there for too long. I feel stupid not checking sooner, because I would have gone and grabbed stuff off it regardless of the problems mine is having. Someone beat me to it tho and the short block was gone. But, they were nice enough to leave all the top end parts scattered around the truck on the ground. I grabbed the ignition module, MAF sensor, and the other sensor that is in the intake which I don't know what it does but it was easy to get to.
I got home and swapped out the ignition module and fired it up.... SUCCESS!!! It runs much better, like its running on all 4. I got it warmed up and drove it around the block. Its not perfect, unfortunately the exhaust shop damaged the threads on the front O2 sensor so I need a new one. And the cat back exhaust won't get here till Thursday, but I feel the primary problem has been resolved.

So now that it runs properly (hopefully) I need to figure out the whole tuning thing. I called a few places and they both were hesitant to work on the Ranger. But, and TIMMA please correct me if I am wrong, if I were to get my own SCT tuner, and find someone to create a profile for my truck and its mods, then I can go that route. I've read of people driving around and datalogging and sending that information to the tuner and they will adjust things as needed, send you a new file, and I upload that to the truck.
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Old 10-15-2017, 08:17 PM   #65
wrath of kyle
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One more thing, the ranger that I grabbed parts off of was an 05, and its the same grey as my 02 truck. Both doors on mine have dents, and the truck at the pick and pull was clean. Do the doors swap out? It looks like they do.
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