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

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  #1  
Old 06-09-2014, 11:22 AM
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94 Explorer with wierd problem

ok so I have had this problem with my 94 Explorer for a little while now and frankly it is driving me nuts and I need it fixed.

Truck is a 94 Explorer 4x4 4door 4.0L A4LD auto trans everything but the engine has 243K miles on it the engine only has 143K on it.

New parts include:
fuel filter
spark plugs
all fluids
filter for oil and trans
air filter

Used parts installed:
DPFE sensor
fuel pump came out of a running and driving truck I had for parts
inertia switch


So I decided to drive my explorer one day to get some errands done. Just a few days before I had driven it and it ran and drove great. Fired her up she was running great drove her about 8 miles (5 miles one way 3 miles back home) and she started having a loss of power and started sputtering. My gas gauge I don't trust so I figured I ran out of gas. I walked home and got gas and a ride back to my car put gas in it (sat probably an hour) fired her up was running great again drove her home and parked her. Had to leave again with the explorer and fired her up running great still drove it about 8 miles again and she did it again. We get her home sputtering and with no power (on a flat spot 5 miles an hour floored).

I parked her suspecting the fuel filter I replaced it and she felt like she was running even better then before (original 243K mile fuel filter) and drove her again 8 miles she acted up again. I got her home again and parked it (I had to go somewhere so I took another truck) and the next day I went out and started her up to get ready to pull codes again running like a top. So I put the reader on as when it was acting up I would get a blinking CEL.

So here is the codes I got:
KOEO: 111 (system pass) C Memory: 217 something about Coil #3 (no idea what it means)

KOER (performed this 2 times and got the same codes): 116 (engine coolant temp high or low (not sure if I warmed her up enough or not)) and 536 (found out that was my fault as I had my brother in the truck and he didn't know to hit the brake).

So the one that confuses me is code 217. What the heck is that plug are all fine I checked them and as far as I can tell it is running on all 6 cylinders. Could it be the coil pack?
I have a coil pack off the engine that came with the truck but I don't know if it is for sure good or not should I try putting it on?
How about fuel pump?

To me it seems like fuel problem because it feels like a loss of power and it starts sputtering like when you run out of gas.
If you let the truck cool down for about an hour it starts up and runs great again.
Should I drive it until the truck acts up then pull codes maybe the computer isn't keeping the codes?
Anything I am missing?
Thanks
Trav
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  #2  
Old 06-09-2014, 12:17 PM
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I'm not very familiar with the 1994. It sounds like you have 3 coil packs and each coil is for 2 cylinders. Do you know if the system uses an ignition module or if the coil drivers are internal to the PCM?

You symptoms are consistent with either a bad fuel pump or a heat-sensitive ignition control module (ICM). Years ago Ford mounted the ICM on the bottom of the distributor with an interface of thermal grease. It's location was close enough to the block that it would get a pretty good heat soaking. Over time, the ICM would start to fail and often when they did, they would act up in the way you describe (stalling when hot, would work again when it cooled down).

The ICM would contain the coil drivers so the diagnostic code you are getting might be indicating that coil #3 is not getting the correct signal to fire which could be due to a faulty ICM. The sputtering you are experiencing could very well be an ignition misfire on 2 cylinder rather than a loss of fuel pressure.

-Rod
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Old 06-09-2014, 02:30 PM
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Nope only one coil pack on the truck.
no distributor or ICM I am very familiar with the ICM (have a ton of old for pickup trucks that have that common problem).
Trav
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Old 06-09-2014, 09:47 PM
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If there's no distributor then you have more than on coil pack. There might be three packs mounted to a single base, but there will be more than one.

-Rod
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Old 06-09-2014, 10:01 PM
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I pulled up the factory service manual for the 1994 4.0L Explorer. You are correct in that there is a single coil, but within the potted coil assembly there are 3 separate ignition coils. The three coils are not able to be separated like I expected.

The diagram also states there is an Ignition Control Module which triggers the coils based on input from the Powertrain Control Module (PCM). The PCM gets it's data from the Crankshaft Position (CKP) sensor.

According to the manual, the ICM is mounted to the Right Inner Fender Apron.


-Rod
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Old 06-10-2014, 09:50 AM
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I will look for that but when I did the engine swap I didn't see anything like that or have any wiring go their.
Trav
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:47 PM
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The module itself is mounted in a "finned" aluminum heat sink. This ignition module is known as a TFI module.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:35 AM
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Ok when I get a chance I will look.
Trav
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Old 06-12-2014, 08:11 PM
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Well found the Ignition control module on the explorer (on the passanger side in front of the battery on the radiator support not in anything I was just blind because of the battery!). Replaced it with one I had on the parts truck. Still kept getting the same code 217. So I gave up replaced the coil pack/ Ignition coil with one I had on the parts truck and turned it over started in a heart beat had more power so I brought out the code reader again and she got a code 111 both times on KOEO and KOER. Ya baby! Had to run some errands so I left a tow strap in another truck (mom stayed home) and dad and me drove to town (18 miles one way) no problems at all. Had problems with my new phone so I stopped by the local phone shop and figured out what was wrong went and looked at another truck then I drove home from their home (first time driving the truck without problems).

So glad to have her on the road again thanks for the help and reps going to y'all whom helped.

Now to move onto the other small quirks she has and work on the other trucks and bikes!



When I get a chance I am going to write up a How to for the stikies maybe on how to replace the Ignition control module with pics!
Unfortunetly I didn't get one for the Coil pack because I did it a bit different then you are suppose to (I took the whole bracket as I didn't have the torexs at the time)
Trav
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:27 PM
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Hopefully this will take care of the issues. Thank you for following up with what you've found.

-Rod
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Old 06-13-2014, 09:20 AM
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No problem thanks for helping figure it out.
Trav
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Old 06-13-2014, 09:20 AM
 
 
 
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