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  #1  
Old 08-09-2006, 07:18 PM
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MoJoWales MoJoWales is offline
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Exclamation 2.3 DOHC BLOCK & SERVICE QUESTION

Hello, my name is MoJoWales and I'm a lurker. Would a mod please let me know where, or if in more than one, this post belongs.
I would like to ask a question, specifically of those who have dealer or service experience.
My daily driver is a 2002 ranger. Build day 3/02 with the 2.3 DOHC, five speed, xl, air, power steering, plain-jane with the better vinyl seats. All stock. Text book maintenence, I run class 8 semis and service H-D equipment. No problems minus one factory rim that was dealer replaced for not holding air. At 65,000 miles the engine exhibited a coolant leak. Upon examination found block to have failed at unstressed extrusion located behind the water pump, aprox. 2.5 inches toward the enginge from the thermostat mounting surface, top side. Hole is aprox. one/eighth inch (big) in diameter. Upon dissasembly found block corrosion in the water passage surrounding the hole. Possible casting error but would be in addition to something else. Possible causes include: Long life anti-freeze going acidic and corroding alloys. Bad ground or electrical system (probably ignition) discharge causing some sort of flux at the site. Other?
Truck still had factory coolant as per concensus at dealer that 5 years is normal. I check the PH of the antifreeze at each oil change (5000 oil, then oil and filter ect...) and should have trusted my gut to swap it out as soon as waranty expired, flame away.
Asside from whether or not an engine should be expected to last X amount of miles, has anyone else had failure of a 2.3 DOHC block? Did you find the cause?
I've been offered a fifty-fifty split with Detroit and a powertrain waranty extension to 100,000 on this. I haven't yet finalized with my dealer and would like to know what, if any, experience the forum has to offer. Take the offer and run, hold out dealling with ford, get a lawyer (not likely), or anything that you have done or have knowledge about would be greatly appreciated.
I WILL know the reason for this failure before the fix is complete. My brothers and I have had fantastic results with the old 2.3 (1993, 1997, 1999) and have heard good things about the new DOHC... until this.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Some answers to questions that I would ask: No computer codes, except low coolant, before or after failure as by Auto-xray scanner.
Engine never run while low on coolant. Leak noticed imediately and shut off. Approximately two gallons then ran out of engine, with about two more in the radiator. Never got hot reading on gauge.
Completely stock.
Original battery with no electrical issues, charges and starts fine with a 13.5-13.9 volt charging, 12.3 resting, and 2 volt average starter pull.
I am getting a lab work-up on the coolant and have offered to supply ford some if the origional coolant to do the same.
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  #2  
Old 08-10-2006, 11:51 AM
Dave257 Dave257 is offline
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Well It sound like the dealer is doing all he can to help. It is out of warrenty and sometimes there are just errors that are not caught by assy line inspections. In a perfect world they would fix it free. But they are offering to 50-50 which means they will fix it for you at their cost. So it it will cost them nothing. If there was a run of bad blocks or something you could hold out for more..but. I have been around them for years and have only see a few casting errors in blocks/heads/transmission cases, as in any mass production it just happens
I guess it comes down too they said they would fix it for 3 yrs/36k and it did last that long. It didn't last as long as it SHOULD have, but its you truck and its just the chance you take when you buy any vehicle.
It sounds like you are doing the right things, firm in what you want without being a jerk about it. If you/familly have used the dealer often ask to talk to the regional guy with the dealer and be nice but firm. In the end take what they offer.
Dave
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Old 08-10-2006, 05:05 PM
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MoJoWales MoJoWales is offline
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Thanks Dave.

Advice about talking to the regional guy is what I'm looking to learn. I think that the dealer service head is doing right be me. I am, however, in the dark about what the protocol is in this situation; ie. do I take the the initial offer or do I push for more due to the inherent flaw and run the risk of souring the relationship. It is not just a risk vs. reward for me as I understand, from a mechanics and service point of view, the mantra of "buyer beware", and that short of being a threating *** that they are not liable unless ordered by a court to do more, which is something that I am loethe to do. However, I recieved the estimate today, $4756 dollars for the engine and install, $2400 of which would be my share. Seems high to me, I will check on this. But I am hung up on spending that much, 20% roughly of the trucks value, to correct a fault off the production line or due to the recomended servicing with the coolant. No easy fix here, but it will work out, I'm sure.
Thanks, and I look forward to hearing from everyone.
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Old 08-12-2006, 10:12 AM
Dave257 Dave257 is offline
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Ask for a meeting with the regional service rep. They will set it up with him when he comes around, HE has the POWER. He can do it for free with the stroke of a pen and a good reason to give his boss. He can also refuse to do anything and there is little you can do about it. (They have done what the warrenty requires legaly) You have to come up with the reason he gives his boss without being to pushy. If he doesn't "like" you then your done.

*The best way to get what you want is to convence someone that doing what you want is also in there best interest.*

So you need to spend some time thinking what will make him WANT to do this. His interest are not necessarly yours. Things that come to mind are how it will help Ford to cover the cost. (a history of past ownership/future buys buy you and other family, Public relations, yada yada.

If you walk in there saying you will never own another G.D. ford, your done.

Again, spend time thinking about how it will help ford if they replace it, that is the key.

As for the cost, they are offering to fix it at cost with you paying, now you need to get the regional service rep to kick in the engine...

Dave
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  #5  
Old 08-12-2006, 11:37 AM
tomw tomw is offline
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If you can determine that the flaw was there from the factory, you have a very good case for requesting a cost-free replacement. Most states have 'reasonable and fit' product laws. Is a product reasonable and fit to do what the seller advertises. In this case, a product has failed at significantly less time in service than one should expect.
My sister had a 2.3 Capri that hydrolocked when she went to start it. Pinhole in the cylinder wall casting finally let go and filled the cylinder with coolant. Ford came up with a replacment short block, which is what you should get from them.
Four thousand for an engine? I don't think so. Check other suppliers for comparable costs. This is a Ranger, not an F-150 where you have to pull the cab off the frame to remove the engine. What kind of labor hours and parts breakdown?
I agree with the above that you catch more flys with honey than you do with vinegar. Go in with the attitude that you can be a 'salesman' for how well FoMoCo stood by their product. (which they should)
Good luck
tom
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  #6  
Old 08-24-2006, 01:07 AM
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MoJoWales MoJoWales is offline
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Sorry for the long lag time. Had a hard-drive crash and needed help to get up and running again.
About the engine. I had a friend of the family who is the head of another ford dealers service dept. quote a much friendlier price for the engine. I told the original dealer that I would like to get the work done elsewhere due to the discrepancy in price. After a little bit of consideration, the dealer of purchase met the same cost and my price was $765 out of pocket. I am very satisfied and the talks were almost friendly even. I agreed to have the swap done at the most convenient time for the dealers shop and am driving it right now with an epoxy, temporary, fix. Everything has been documented and is in writing. It pays to be informed, firm, and open-minded. I got a fair resolution to my problem and I would incourage others in a similar situation to remain calm at all times. Consider your options, think things over, do some comparisons, and talk to the people your dealing with.
Many thanks to the people who replied to my treads regarding this issue.

MoJoWales
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Old 05-29-2008, 08:31 PM
jdma2640 jdma2640 is offline
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MoJoWales Your Not Alone

We are very unhappy ford ranger owners at the moment. It appears that our 2002 ford ranger 2.3 liter engine is rotted out in the exact place yours is. We were very surprised to find that the same exact thing happened to ours at almost the same mileage. Our truck has 63,000 miles on it.
We had a radiator issue which turned into a major problem.
Upon repair of the thermostat housing our mechanic discovered a major erosion issue in the block directly behind the water jacket. He poked a hole in the block with his finger! HMMMM.
We have been in contact with Ford and at this time have not yet come to any agreements for reconcilliation of the issue.
We are very interested to find out if any other happy ford owners are in the same boat as us.
This truck is our 10th ford vehicle in 30 years.
I feel that this truck and your truck are not the only trucks out there with this problem and we are about to investigate this issue to the hilt and we do mean to the hilt.
We have already been there with the Taurus engine. I think Ford has another recall that they don't know about yet!
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Old 05-30-2008, 08:54 PM
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MoJoWales MoJoWales is offline
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Been awhile since I thought about this thread. Sorry to hear about your problem. I have heard of two other 2002+ 2.3 liters having the same problem. I ended up having the family friend shop foreman fix mine after having trouble scheduling with the original dealership. I KNOW that they had seen others with the same problem. I would like to be kept up to date with what you find out as I can offer some pointers with my situation.

Good luck,

MoJoWales
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Old 06-02-2008, 06:25 AM
jdma2640 jdma2640 is offline
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If you can give us info on the other two you know of,please let us know. Our is presently at the ford dealership as we speak. We may need this info to prove our point.
I have called the Ford Motor Corp. directly. I was given a little bit of a run-around, however I haven't given up on this issue.
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Old 06-10-2008, 06:52 PM
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MoJoWales MoJoWales is offline
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Shop foreman at a Missouri ford dealership is a close friend of my father. He spoke of seeing two other examples of this problem when I had it. They had come up with an epoxy type sealant solution. He still works there so he may be reluctant to go public. I also have heard from my machinist that there have been a few casting problems, especially with the first batches of these new 2.3's. I will ask him for specifics about it when I talk to him next. Mine has just recently had a few new problems, including a O2 sensor that was cross treaded into the catalytic converter at the factory and lacks half the treads, intermittent missing that I am diagnosing, and still has a little bit of coolant leak but too small to measure but can smell it. Keep me up to date with where you are at with this.

MoJoWales

Edit for point: Let me know if you need to document my ranger problem, I'll be glad to talk to ford and explain it or provide the incident details to document it.
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Old 10-29-2008, 01:04 AM
bobbondo bobbondo is offline
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i had the same hole in my ranger block

Hey Guys,
I too had the exact same problem on my 02 2.3 ranger 5sp xlt. It happened
in january of 2006 with only 23,000 miles .You can imagine my thoughts when my mechanic pointed out the small hole on the block near the thermostat.I was below the warranty mileage but over the 36 months. the dealer who sold it to me said too bad but we can't do anything for you it's past warr and you did't change your coolant. I bitched and moaned for a few day while it sat a t the dealer when finally the ageed to put a top half of a motor(sorrry i'm not too technical) for a cost of $800 to me. what could I say? even though i thought they should cover it completely. The day i got it back the engine light went on 2 miles from the dealer.I brought it back and they claimed it was an unrelated engine sensor that would cost me anothe $300.At that point I just wanted my truck back so i reluctantly paid the $300. Now for the new problem! I noticed i was over heating and coolant was leaking from the engine. I had my mechanic check it out and it seem s there is a press fit pipe at the base of the engine that had developed a leak. Any ways he sad he had to remove the whole engine to get at it, Another $1000 0r so. Instead I wanted to torch it (lol). he poured some temp sealant in it and so far it's holding. Now it run rough and i have no heat. not bad for a truck with only 43000 miles. let me know if you guys need any info on my identicle problem.
another satisfied 2002 ranger 4cyl owner
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Old 10-29-2008, 09:44 AM
tomw tomw is offline
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bobbondo, I would suggest that your dealer is taking advantage of you, and not servicing your truck properly. Coincidence is one thing, and Murphy was an optimist, but things just don't break ...
I had an Escort that needed the 'top of the engine', also known as the cylinder head replaced. The mechanic took off his glasses, and wasn't Clark Kent any more. He decided he had opened the radiator petcock, and needed to close it. It was already closed, but his super strength was enough to break the plastic 'nut' inside the tank when he turned it.
When I got home, it was leaking coolant on the street. We went round and round to no avail. "Unrelated, these things just happen" on a car with less than 36k.
They broke it, but would not admit it. My alternative was to buy a complete radiator, so I used fishing line and expoxy to wrap the nut, and reinstalled it. It worked til the car was junked 6 years later.
Your 'mechanic' and dealer pocketed a pile of money on your job, and made more than if they got Factory help. And, they didn't do a good job, from what you report.
I'd expect that they got your money once, but you will not be back AND will tell all your friends how "nice" they were to you. Please do that. They will learn that one unsatisfied customer can cause them 20 lost sales, and the opposite is true, after they go out of business.
tom
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Old 10-29-2008, 09:44 AM
 
 
 
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