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Explorer, Sport Trac, Mountaineer & Aviator 1991-1994, 1995-2001, 2002-2005, 2006-2010 Ford Explorer

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Old 05-18-2012, 12:40 PM
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Explorer Sport

Howdy to all! And welcome to the weekend! Ive been keeping an eye on the exploder forum for a while now... ive been a part of the older f150 forum for quite some time now but lookin to get a newer more reliable explorer! What ive been looking at are the 98 and up explorer sport with the SOHC's. Is there anything i should be aware of or be looking for? Whats your opinions on the front suspension set up? I HATE my current ttb setup on my f150... Straight axleing that soon! And if i end up getting a sport ill probably do it to that too in the future!

Just looking for any opinions. Thanks!
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Old 05-18-2012, 01:51 PM
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STAY AWAY from SOHC motors until 2002 or 2003.

Unless it's a rebuild that you can verify.

The early SOHC motors are time bombs due to the timing chain tensioner problems. Check this and the 4.0 forums for thread after thread about it.

Also, the 5 speed automatic is a POS for pretty much all years, including the Mustang, so again, the early years are to be avoided and the later years are to be watched.

As for the front suspension, it works well enough, but figure ball joints if it's original and running up around 100k miles.

There are a couple of shock threads on here too. The stockers seem fine till you get some better aftermarket jobs on there.
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Old 05-19-2012, 12:52 AM
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What's the aftermarket parts for both the ohv and sohc avaliability like?
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Old 05-19-2012, 04:24 PM
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What kind of parts? Performance or maintenance?
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Old 05-20-2012, 08:59 AM
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Both. I will be attending Universal Techinal Institute in the fall as well as the ford FACT (ford manufacture program) and I need a more reliable mode of transportation. My plan is to after school build one of the explorer sports into a trail rig. So it'd be maintenance now and performance later.
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Old 05-20-2012, 02:04 PM
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Maintenance and replacement parts are readily available. Chassis and suspension performance a bit less so, due to the IFS design and rollover history. Engine performance very little afaik.
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Old 05-20-2012, 02:58 PM
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I'm not to concerned about the ifs too much.. When it transforms to an off road rig it will be straight axled. Thanks for your help with all this!
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Old 05-27-2012, 10:55 AM
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One more question... I've done a little research, but could anyone give me a link or tell me if there's a solution to the timing chain issue? Maby aftermarket parts or just something stronger? I lookin at a 02 with a sohc and 135000 miles on the clock. If I do get it depending on if it's been done or not, I may just replace those immediately before I have an issue...
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Old 05-28-2012, 03:46 AM
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2002 might have had the "improved" system. AFAIK, the replacements from Ford of the aftermarket do the trick. If the engine is not making the death rattle on start up, you can wait a while methinks... This here link will get you all the detail you ever wanted on the subject, plus a host of others. It's all Exploders all the time:

correct parts #'s 4.0sohc guides & tensioners with pics... - Ford Explorer Ranger Enthusiasts "Serious Explorations"®

Thanks for the reps btw, good luck with your projects.
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:58 AM
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Your welcome! Thanks for all your help!
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:58 AM
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