Common Problems With The Ford Ranger


he Ford Ranger came into existence in 1983 and the name has been used on a number of vehicles.

In 2018, the vehicle came back as a mid-size pickup truck for its 2019 model. It received rave reviews from automobile critics. The Ranger was such a success, it was named the most reliable truck in its class.

Without a doubt, this is one of the very best mid-size pickup trucks on the road. That said, there have been a few issues that we are going to go over in this article:

Transmission Problems

Ford Ranger Engine

There have been multiple complaints regarding the Ford Ranger’s transmission. The complaints ranged from rough shifting, gear loss and the overdrive light turning on and off erratically.

Possible Reasons And Solutions

Here are some of the potential reasons leading to this problem and the solutions:

Low Or Dirty Transmission Fluid

Rough shifting may happen due to a low level of transmission fluid. If the transmission fluid is low, the pressure will eventually become ineffective causing rough shifting problems.

Old fluids will become dirty and lead to rough shifting. If you have not changed or topped off the fluid for a long time, you need to change it or the fluid will lose the ability to lubricate the parts and will not reduce friction. When that happens, it’s inevitable that you will experience rough shifting.

This will also happen if you have used the wrong transmission fluid. You must use the right transmission fluid for your Ford Ranger.

Transmission Fluid

You should check your owner’s manual, check online or get a mechanic to help you get the right fluid. Using the wrong fluids can be harmful and could cause rough shifting over a period of time.

A Worn Out Transmission

If you experience rough shifting, you might panic thinking it’s the transmission and for good reason, it’s expensive to replace it. In general, the transmission should last for at least 100,000 miles so if your vehicle is much newer than that, chances are it’s not the transmission, so take a deep breath.

The transmission is made up of bands and clutches and both help carry out gear changes. Over time, they can give out and when that happens you will experience rough shifting. To make sure if this is the case, the transmission will have to be removed. It’s strongly advised you do not attempt to do this yourself, get a qualified technician to take care of it.

Also, if your vehicle is older, you might have to get the transmission replaced.

A Faulty Torque Converter

A faulty torque converter is the automatic transmission’s equivalent of a damaged clutch. The torque converters connect the transmission and the engine. If this component fails it cannot operate properly which could lead to rough shifting.

Having transmission issues will disable your vehicle so it’s strongly advised to take these symptoms seriously. The best way to deal with this, get in touch with your technician to diagnose the vehicle so you can correct the problem before it causes serious damage.

The Engine Frequently Misfires

Ford Ranger Gearstick

Many Ford Ranger owners have complained about the truck’s engine. In most cases, the complaints were regarding an abrupt misfiring of the engine followed by other issues. The most common issues include loss of power, mild vibrations, and the engine stalling.

Possible Reasons And Solutions

To address this problem, here are some potential reasons and solutions.

A Blocked Fuel Injector

One of the leading reasons for the engine misfiring is a blocked fuel injector. Over a period of time, the fuel injector may get clogged up with dirt, carbon and other similar elements. This could prevent its ability to deliver fuel to the combustion chamber which will cause the engine to misfire.

A Damaged Ignition Coil Pack

Each ignition cylinder has its own coil pack. These packs help to ignite the fuel and air mixture by transmitting electricity to the spark plugs. Sometimes the connection wires will wear out and if that’s the case, there could be a misfire instead of the typical spark.

A Defective Engine Control Module

Most newer engines have a digital control module designed to handle the engine and ensure the combustion process runs properly. However, like all computers, the engine control module could have a glitch that could disrupt the combustion process and lead to a misfire.

The average solution is disconnecting the battery for a short while and then reconnect it. This will usually correct the glitch. If it doesn’t, you will have to get it checked by a good mechanic.

Leaking Vacuum Hoses

A vehicle’s engine usually has multiple vacuum hoses which will help to improve airflow. A hole in one of the hoses, no matter how small, can cause problems for the engine computer and will eventually misfire.

A Defective Catalytic Converter

This is another common reason for an engine misfiring is a clogged or blocked catalytic converter.

The catalytic converter is a critical component of the exhaust system. It helps detoxify harmful substances but for some reason, it can get clogged. In turn, this could lead to overheating which could cause a misfire.

Leaking Gasket And Valve Seals

The manifold gaskets and valve seals will help to make sure the correct airflow and fluid are in place while keeping compression at a desirable level. If there is a leak, it could cause a loss of power and possibly an engine misfire.

Misfiring happens for a number of reasons but it’s advisable not to guess because you might be wrong. If you are wrong it could end up costing you a lot of money. It’s strongly suggested you contact a certified technician for an expert diagnosis.

Stalling When Idling During Cold Starts

Ford Ranger

There have been a number of complaints by Ford Ranger owners that it’s difficult to start from cold and it hesitates when idling. These issues were commonplace with the Ford Ranger models during the 90s and early 2000s.

Possible Reasons And Solutions

A Damaged Engine Coolant Temperature Sensor

The engine coolant temperature sensor calculates the engine coolant temperature. This sensor may be stuck or become damaged, sending the wrong signals to the computer.

If the computer receives a warm signal during a cold start, it will not deliver the amount of fuel needed for the engine to work correctly.

A Damaged Air Intake Temperature Sensor

Your Ford Ranger relies on the air intake temperature sensor to compute the delivery of fuel. If the IAT sends the wrong signal, it could impact the delivery of fuel which could lead to idling issues during a cold start.

One way to address this issue is to check your vehicle owner’s manual for a testing procedure for the IAT. This can be somewhat technical so you can either handle it by yourself or contact your mechanic.

A Defective Manifold Absolute Pressure Sensor or MAP

The manifold absolute pressure sensor affects the air and fuel mixture in the engine system. If the MAP is faulty, it could cause the engine to stall during cold starts.

You can also test the MAP by getting info from the vehicle’s manual. If you do not have a manual, a vacuum pump and digital multimeter might work. Once again, it’s probably smarter to let your technician handle the problem.

A Faulty EGR Valve

Another reason for stalling during cold starts is a faulty exhaust fuel recirculation valve. This valve restricts the flow of recirculated fuel based on the engine load.

If the valve develops a problem, it could make the engine stall when idling during a cold start.

There are occasions when the EGR valve only needs to be warming the engine. You could try warming up the engine and see if this valve closes up and starts operating properly. If it doesn’t, you should let an expert deal with the problem.

If your Ford Ranger often stalls when idling during a cold start, we suggest sending it to a technician for a thorough inspection.

Ford Ranger – Pros And Cons

Ford Ranger Service


Towing Ability

This mid-size truck will tow up to 7,500 pounds, but is it too much for a mid-size pickup truck? Ford addressed this by equipping the truck with a Trailer Sway Control.

The Trailer Sway Control helps to stabilize the truck while towing. The built-in backup camera comes in handy for anyone who will be towing a trailer.

Improved Agility

The Ford Ranger is very responsive and agile for a vehicle of its size. It comes with a turbocharged 2.3-liter engine that can turn out 310-pound feet of torque and 270 horsepower. Also, the ten-speed automatic transmission will put excess torque to good use on the pavement.

Off-Road Options

The standard powertrain on this truck is the rear-wheel-drive. However, there is an all-wheel-drive option. The AWD will help off-roaders with traction and stability on terrains that are famous for excessive mud or snow.

Outside of the AWD, the Ranger offers other off-road packages like a locking rear differential, a special suspension, and the list goes on.

There is a terrain management system that will allow adjustments to shifting and engine throttle. Terrain modes for different conditions include:


These features will make all the difference in the world when you need to drive through various off-road conditions.

The Internet

We are all in an age where the internet is king. Even Ford understands this which is why their Ford Ranger has FordPass connect technology.

ForPass technology works like Wi-fi and can connect up to 10 devices with an enormous reach of 50 feet when outside the truck.

A Warm & Entertaining Interior

Ford Ranger Interior

Many Ford Ranger owners are very happy with other features including leather seats, leather steering wheels, and surround lighting. The lighting comes in a variety of colours that will light up the cabin and you can select a colour that fits your mood.

You will get SiriusXM traffic and travel options which is very helpful if you are traveling in an area you are not familiar with. This technology will give you traffic before you get to that area and see to it you get to your destination safely and on time.

You have the option to get the Sync 3 interface with an 8-inch touchscreen that will be conveniently within your reach. You will be able to connect your smartphone to make calls, send messages, and play music from your playlist.

The Advanced Safety Features

The Ford Ranger also offers a number of driver-assist systems to help you finish your trip safely. The driver-assist includes:

automatic emergency braking
adaptive cruise control
rear-cross traffic alert
automatic high beams
blind-spot monitoring
rear-view camera


The Engine Misfires Regularly
Complaints About The Transmission
Known To Stall During Cold Starts

The Ford Ranger now comes with so many excellent features to make your travelling experience enjoyable.

For Ford Ranger servicing  in Manchester and North Manchester, Bury, Oldham, Bolton, Rochdale, Tameside etc Make a booking below now or contact us or call us on 0161 628 5270 at the Van Centre Manchester, with decades of experience our specialists are sure to service or repair your Sprinter to a high standard without breaking the bank.

Our Latest Google, Facebook & Trustpilot Reviews

Book Your Van Service, Repair Or MOT Now

Completed Van Centre Website Booking

12 + 3 =

Call Now Button