1997 Ford Ranger Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the 1997 Ford Ranger as reported by actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

Refine by vehicle
Choose your vehicle
Known Problems

Bogging, hesitation or stalling may be experienced during moderate to heavy acceleration. This can be caused by a failing of many sensors or modules in the fuel injection system. It is recommended to have an experienced shop perform diagnosis to find the root of the problem.

The engine may misfire and/or buck while driving at freeway speeds with no fault code stored in the powertrain control module (PCM). This can be caused by an intermittent fault with the camshaft synchronizer assembly. This condition can be diagnosed by monitoring knock sensor data as per Ford service bulletin #05-22-12. Replacement of the synchronizer assembly will be required to correct this concern.

The engine may have a higher that normal idle at times. After cold start with an automatic transmission and when the clutch is depressed with a manual transmission. Our technicians tell us updated powertrain control module (PCM) software is available to address this concern.

Moisture inside the rear brake drum assemblies can cause the rear drum brakes to grab, or lock when first driving. Inspect the rear brakes, replace the rear shoes as needed, and make any adjustments. The back side of the backing plate needs to be sealed where moisture can get into the drums to prevent this from recurring.

The synchronizer shaft for the camshaft position sensor can cause a loud squeak or chirping noise due to failure of the upper bushing. The noise may be erratic and is usually present when the engine is warm.

A buzzing type noise may be noted from upper engine area at about 1900 RPM, under light acceleration. Our technicians tell us this can be caused by loose ignition coil bracket bolts. Coil bracket bolts should be checked for the correct torque before further diagnoses is performed.

If oil is leaking from the gaskets and seals, the engine needs to be resealed.

The magnet for the camshaft position sensor may fall out of its mount and damage the synchronizers. This causes long crank times when starting the engine and may cause the Check Engine Light to illuminate. If this happens, both the magnets and the synchronizers need to be replaced.