1995 Ford Explorer Engine failing - Getting married! PLEASE ADVISE ASAP!

Tiny
FROHIKE47
  • MEMBER
  • 1995 FORD EXPLORER
  • 6 CYL
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 120 MILES
Hi, Im getting married shortly and need my vehicle on the road! Heres the details: PLEASE ADVISE ON POSSIBLE CAUSES TO DIRECT REPAIRS AND DIAGNOSTIC.

1995 Ford Explorer Sport. 120k+ miles, had full service 4 months ago = oil, sparks, etc. ENGINE CUT-OUT PROBLEM. OIL OK - little dirty, transmission fluid clean, coolant clean, drivers panel gauges indicate battery charge level good and oil pressure good.

NOTED: Engine misfiring while idle. Latest engine loss occurred city driving. Radio lights dimmed - went off and slowly faded in dim with headlight activation. Speedometer gauge started behaving erratic at low speeds. Engine started to stutter. Seems to be less significant at much lower speeds (ie 10 mph). Alternator / spark plug issue? Just wanted some advice before delving under the bonnet.
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Saturday, February 19th, 2011 AT 9:57 PM

9 Replies

Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • MEMBER
Do you have a check engine light?

Have the alternator load tested-if okay-give it a tune-up and see what happens
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Saturday, February 19th, 2011 AT 10:18 PM
Tiny
FROHIKE47
  • MEMBER
I did a long distance run and the similar symptoms came up at the end (was evening on return and so headlights on). The ENGINE CHECK LIGHT came on briefly but then vanished. Not been on since. Just pulled one of the spark plugs out and looks good - normal light grey / brown deposits. No cracks, carbon build ups or anything. 5 more to go. Suspect the alternator but would this cause:#

1) Speedo erratic behavior?
2) Engine cut out
3) Poor idle misfires (Not major ones just sounds rough and spluttery - engine revs raise and lower approx only 100 rpm while idling at the lights but can hear the splutter under the bonnet.

Suspect the alternator but the battery indicator on the dash says normal (half way between upper and lower).

Will get alternator checked shortly.

Thanks for getting back quick!
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Saturday, February 19th, 2011 AT 10:37 PM
Tiny
FROHIKE47
  • MEMBER
***UPDATE***

Electrical tests indicate that the battery is good and the alternator is charging steady at 14V. Intermittent alternator fault suggested. Battery indicator on dash is good at half way. When stationary and rev sharp up to 4-5000 rpm and then throttle released engine drops down to near stalling with battery meter going right down only to quickly correct back to normal. Lights and radio lights dim when hits near stalling. Recovery almost straight away. Mechanic suggested slight leak on the manifold area explains 'popping' noise and an electrical fault will screw up the ignition. Also indicated that an alternator fault would cause the vehicle to behave erratic as described. Seeking electrical mechanic Monday. Any advice as to fault greatly welcomed!
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Sunday, February 20th, 2011 AT 1:30 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
  • EXPERT
Throwing my inexperienced 2 cents worth in, Step-daughters Exploder had a alternator issue. Battery went down. Not running well. Erratic gauges. Even though she saw it coming on, she insisted on driving it, till it just wouldn't go no more. Many miles from home. Wee hours of the morning.

You guessed it, .I GET THE DISTRESS CALL!

We replaced the alternator, the next day. Same issue, except it was now it was charging.

I called a friend, he said that in some vehicles, if the battery goes way down. Left the lights on. Etc, even if the alternator is good, even Jump Starting won't fix it.

He said you must disconnect the battery for a short period and either charge IT (However, till it has a wonderful charge), or replace with a fully charged one

Seems Mr. Computer must ONLY, somehow "Reset" with full voltage, after being totally disconnected.

This made hers work. She was happy.I was happier!

The Medic
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Sunday, February 20th, 2011 AT 2:29 AM
Tiny
FROHIKE47
  • MEMBER
Thanks Medic. Read about disconnecting the battery to reset the computers might help. And the erratic gauges sounds right. Also just reading up remember smelling a hot smoldering plastic smell after drives. I thought it was normal on these Big cars (Im used to 2 litre alfa romeos in the UK!), But turns out it can be erratic charging from the alternator if bad connections or diodes gone causing an AC leak into the DC circuits. I think we're onto the fault here but still appreciate everyone's thoughts and input! Going to check the wires in the morning as lost the light now and maybe replace the alternator if the connections are good. BTW, lol on the call for help. I always get that from the family members in the UK. And you can do tons of work on an engine but it'll be the cheap new wing mirror that brings the wow face. Doh!
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Sunday, February 20th, 2011 AT 3:00 AM
Tiny
FROHIKE47
  • MEMBER
*** UPDATE - please help****

New symptom. Truck seems fine again and then boom. Local city driving and erratic speedo and loss of power. Also CLUTCH SEEMS TO SLIP ON AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION - rpm counter spins up smoothly with accelerator depressed but no power and then grips again. Managed to get to a garage and then surprise surprise. It starts working fine again. TRANSMISSION / ALTERNATOR?
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Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011 AT 12:46 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
  • EXPERT
RASMATAS, I'm spent. Other than recommending a Jeep, You better continue on with this, remember he's on his way to the funeral!

The Medic
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Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011 AT 2:40 AM
Tiny
RASMATAZ
  • MEMBER
You started a big war I was going to cut it short due to circumstances-But No-you choose to send it to the grave-lol

Here's your Charge System-EWD now you can test it
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Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011 AT 7:11 AM
Tiny
FROHIKE47
  • MEMBER
Electrical Mechanic gets back to me indicating that its all down to the Over Drive (O/D). The O/D hasnt worked since I got it and not to familiar with it on the automatic gearbox. Numerous little things have gone like bulbs in the dash but apparently its to blame for everything? Cheap repair anyhows and cheaper than an alternator or transmission thats for sure! We'll see how it goes. Thanks to all for help and especially for the wiring diagram!
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Friday, February 25th, 2011 AT 9:04 PM

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