Ford Ranger 1992 Electrical Problem- Help?

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  #1  
Old 04-28-06, 06:57 AM
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Question Ford Ranger 1992 Electrical Problem- Help?

Ford Ranger 1992

Changed out spark plugs and now have an electrical short somewhere ...

1. air conditioner will not turn on
2. Tacho meter stopped working
3. Temperature gauge stopped working
4. When starting engine with key, once in a while it does not start or do anything. Just complete electrical shutdown. However, try 2 or 3 times and it starts up.

Loose wire? Frustrated and Broke. Thanks for any suggestions or help.
 
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Old 04-28-06, 07:50 AM
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My first thought is a defective ignition switch.
 
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Old 04-28-06, 06:19 PM
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But you see...in your OP you don't really say that when the car DOES start if then that makes all those other things that weren't working, to also start working once again. We need to know that, right off the bat.

And are you sure that the a/c is not a separate issue? Or, does the a/c normally work and everytime the meter and gauge stop working that it is only THEN that the a/c stops working?

Running down electrical problems can be one of the hardest things in mechanics. But it helps to a have a real diagnostic type mind where you are good at playing detective.

If you enjoy the pursuit of a good mystery, which you can have with some of these electrical snafus...then I would suggest you go to your local public library and see if in their reference section that they don't perhaps have Mitchell books (like Chiltons, Haynes, etc.), where you can find your electrical wiring for your vehicle and photostat those pages. I have done this for two of my vehicles, and because of this was able to find a couple of electrical problems. They show how all the wiring is interconnected and where, the fuses, links, the color coding of each wire so that when you trace, you know which color wire goes to where, etc.

Good luck.
 
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Old 04-29-06, 06:01 AM
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Your right about my post

I didn't go into detail trying to keep it simple, and I was so frustrated at the time. It is all related. The compressor was checked seperately and works. Assuming it is all related, because when spark plugs were changed out, all of this started happening.

So, first thing checked wiring of spark plugs, found distributor cap needed to be changed. Changed it out with a new one.

Went to autozone website, following troubleshooting electrical engine instructions and have not found it yet. Could be in the wiring harness ?? but have no way to test that.

When ignition starts the other items DO NOT work. The truck has so many problems it is hard to find out what is causing what. Just trying to keep it going through the summer if I can get some a/c going.

I have the Chilton's book on it, and the Ford CD for all the Ford truck engines.

Should I have Ford run a diagnostic test for whatever they charge..$150 or something? Or should I buy a engine diagnostic reader? I saw one low priced for around $85.00 Autoxray, but they range in price up to $600 and didn't know if this was a piece of junk or if it worked? Why the huge price differences..?

Thanks for any more input..
 
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Old 04-29-06, 04:31 PM
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I have never heard of changing spark plugs affect anything in the electrical system. Did you unplug anything on purpose or by accident,or whack something with a tool?, like some main computer harness or something, and then reinsert it?

Now when you say the a/c is not going...exactly what do you mean? Do you know enough about the compressor to visually tell if the compressor is being engaged by it's clutch? You see, the compressor pulley will always turn by the belt. But that does not mean the compressor is compressing. When the a/c is not calling for heat, the pulley simply free-wheels. But when it DOES call for heat there is a plate on the other side of the pulley that locks up with the pulley, and you can actually hear the motor rpms draw down, also. Now, does that part happen, or not? If not, it could be electrical, or, from being low on refrigerant. There is usually a sensor which will not allow the clutch to engage if it is low on refrigerant.

Rereading your first post; um, by saying the a/c does not work...does the BLOWER work?, or no? This really has nothing to do with the a/c specificaly. It has as much to do with the heat and fresh air as it does the a/c.

You have to figure out what you might have done changing out the plugs. Simply changing out the plugs...if you didn't nick some wire, or disconnect something....I can't see how changing out plugs could cause any electrical problem.
 
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Old 04-29-06, 05:02 PM
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Ok, it was at Midas Muffler and the guy there exchanged work for work with my brother in law who had the truck. The midas guy hooked up the a/c without going through the engine. It worked. It blew cold air, etc. They hooked it back up to the engine. It does not work. Nothing. No blower motor, no air, dead like no power dead.

The temp gauge is not working, but you can see it trying to work just not getting enough power. I put in a new sensor, and it still is doing the same thing.

The rpm gauge is not working at all.

They could be not related at all. Just assuming so since it all happened at the same time. Checked spark plug connections, checked all vacuum pump lines and they are secure. Still using the troubleshooting guide and at the point where I have to get behind the distributor cap which is a real tight position up against the back of the engine wall.

Stay tuned...ok..I am a girl if that makes any difference. I have never worked on a car or truck before in my life until now. Trying my best though. It is kind of fun. Not real fun, but fun.

Ok, keep suggestions coming and I will go see what else I can see. Gorgeous weather to be outside today..
 
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Old 05-01-06, 04:21 AM
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I'm still voting for a defective ignition switch, assuming that during the spark plug replacement a wiring harness/connector was not mechanically damaged.
 
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Old 05-01-06, 02:25 PM
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electrical problems

I have a '98 Ranger and have a miltitude of electrical troubles. While driving, the 'door ajar' light and sound alert comes on, the ABS light comes and off randomly, the dome light turns itself on and off at will, the heater/AC fan speed switch will quit working for days at a time and then be OK for a while. I have had two other Rangers but will never own another.
 
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Old 05-01-06, 03:24 PM
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steven,

Cars never did this multiple electrical problem stuff until we hit the computer age with cars. Then you hear about codes screwing up or having to be reset and such. I guess that by just disconnecting your battery you can alter codes in the computer.
 
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