19th Dec 2005, 12:32

I have a 96 4 litre 4x4 supercab and agree its generally excellent. My gas mileage isn't very good either though, and my engine is fine. However things you should watch out for (I have less mileage than you and already dealt with) :

- If you have an auto tranny, watch out. Based on the A4LD (LD stands for Light Duty!!! from the 1980s Aerostar) this tranny is the weak link in the drivetrain. Note shift 'flares' between 2nd and 3rd especially, and slow engagements, for signs of trouble.

- Heater control valve is notorious for slow leaks.

- Ball joints and tie rods wore prematurely.

- Emissions control components (EGR valve, etc) rusted out causing stalling condition.

- Door ajar light can stick. Spray WD40 into door latch switches. My right-side cruise control lights also went out, but came back on by themselves a few weeks later ??

- Automatic hubs and transfer case motor can fail. Though shift-on-the-fly supposedly is offered, I suggest only engaging at a stop to prevent wear.

- Mice built a nest on my engine. Watch out for this... lots of dry shredded paper and leaves, just waiting to ignite. There is a passage from behind the glove box to the engine bay, they used this passage to collect nesting materials.

30th Jan 2009, 17:08

I just bought a 1998 Ford Ranger truck from a Ford dealer on Monday, and while driving it home, I experienced a banging noise coming from the upper radiator hose by the thermostat, and lo and behold, the problem is there is air getting in the cooling system from a leak behind the timing cover, which is causing it to get air into system, then another test was done on the oxygen sensors, and both came out with a little green on it, which means there is possibility that the head gasket is going to start leaking...

I paid 4,500 for the truck and bought it as is... with 100 thousand miles on it.

23rd Apr 2009, 21:13

Great car, have 160,000 miles on it and it is still running strong!