Explorer, Sport Trac, Mountaineer & Aviator1991-1994, 1995-2001, 2002-2005, 2006-2010 Ford Explorer
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4.0 has 196000 miles - check engine light came on had (2) o2 sensors replaced then check engine light came back on took it back to the dealer, informed that the camshaft sensor is bad $842.00 installed. Anybody ever heard of this? Help!!
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Was the engine making a loud chirping sound when it was cold? This is what happened to my '95 4.0 OHV. Ended up selling the vehicle to my brother and he fixed it. There is a bearing that goes bad. I know he ended up spending a lot of time on it and the part was expensive. The price doesn't sound unreasonable for a dealer. Try finding a good independent next time. It will probably save you a few bucks.
I haven't heard any chirping noise, but it does hesitate badly between 40 and 50 mph. I can't find anyone that has the tool it takes to put the sensor in (exept the dealer.) The tool is $1000 from snap-on.
Something sounds a little fishy. According to Ford's Powertrain/Drivetrain Service Manual for 1995, the camshaft position sensor is otherwise known as the Cylinder ID sensor (12K073). It drops into the back of the block in the position that a distributor would occupy, if you had one. It is driven off the oil pump drive, the same way a distributor would. The sensors cost about $300 to $400 on the aftermarket (Wells, Niehoff, etc). The price is outrageously high for what the sensor is.
Things are a little tight at the back of the engine in an Explorer. it might be necessary to remove at least the top half of the intake plumbing. That might be driving up the labor costs at the dealer.
The service manual mentions tool T94T-12270-A "Sensor Adjuster Wrench" "designed for easy access to the hold-down clamp screw". I suspect you could make a perfectly suitable wrench from a cheap box-end wrench by bending it using an acetylene torch. $1000 from Snap-On? For this?
There is also a test harness mentioned, part number T94T-50-B, for setting the position. This is nothing more than a connector and three wires -- power, ground, and sense. You have to use a voltmeter to see when the sensor trips. Think of it the same as timing a points style distributor using a test light.
You could probably get the sensor from the local "Pick-n-pull" lot for $10.00 or so, since they probably won't know what it is or what it costs new. You could make yourself a test harness by snipping off the connector and a chunk of the existing harness from the same junker.
I think I'll take your advice and go to the junk yard to see if I can find a used one. I found a new part on-line for $302. I have not had any luck finding the tool or at least a picture of it. Thanks for your help!
There is a picture of the wrench in the Ford service manual. It is just a box end wrench with two bends in it. Think of a squared-off letter C. The top and bottom legs are about 4 inches long. The center leg is about 10 inches long.
I have a 96 that is OBD-II. I'm not sure they are the same, if they are, you do not need any special tools to change the cam sensor itself. It has 2 bolts holding it on l(smaller than 1/4 inch), and one plug. Mine was squeeking really bad and I tried to pull the shaft and sensor as a unit. (just like pulling a distributor). It couldn't be done with the sensor installed because it hit the intake, so I pulled the intake. Once I saw how it was designed, I realized the intake didn't have to come off. I proved it by pulling the sensor once the intake was installed. Once the sensor was removed, I loosened and removed the shaft to grease the shaft (stop the squeeking). But since I removed the shaft, I had to re-time the thing, so I had to buy a special tool to time it ($30). As long as you do not loosen and turn (like setting time on a distributor) , or pull the sensor shaft (like pulling a distributor), you do not need to time the sensor. Once I've changed one, I can do it in like 5 minutes or less, but all by touch, cannot see tha darn thing. I also find it hard to believe a sensor costs that much, there's nothing to the thing. I would question it being bad though, from what I read, if it goes bad while you are driving, you won;t notice a thing. However, the engine won't start the next time you try to start it. I've unplugged mine while the engine is running and it made no difference (engine runs using the last known timing signal). Supposedly the timing reference is nulified when you turn the engine off. If you need more help, e-mail me at email@example.com
I just rebuilt the engine in a 95 Explorer. What tool did you have to get to set that sensor set correctly. I followed the procedure that I could find, but the engine is still running badly. Could it be something else?
If the shaft is not timed, it will run pretty bad.. Timing just has to be close.. I'm not sure if the timing is your problem, but I'll try and help you out.. I am trying right now to make a mold of some type to make a temporary tool for you.. I'm not sure exactly how I'll make it, but it should be good enough to get the shaft timed.. If that doesn't work, I can probably send some type of a pattern (pitcure) that you can cut out of cardboard or something.. I'll see what I can do and get back to you in the next day or so.
I just looked on E-Bay and found the sensor for a 94, but it does not look like what I have (96 4.0). the one I have looks like a distributor with the sensor being the distributor cap, but a lot smaller. The one for the 94 I just saw looks totally different.
And I assume that you are using the procedure that ford has. Where you position the crank pully at 26 deg. ATDC. and then move the sensor back and forth. This is probably a pain to do an not move it after you have it set.
Also I fond out after the fact that there is a harness that you can use to do this out of the vehicle.
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