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Old 09-10-2005, 23:01   #1 (permalink)
hboothe@gte.net
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1997 Ford Ranger 4.0 weird engine humming/whining

Hey, folks, please forgive the cross-posting but I found, in my search
for this answer, some posts about Ford Rangers in both groups. I'll
watch both threads for answers.

I've got a 1997 Ford Ranger with the 4.0 liter V-6 with a manual
transmission and it's developed an odd whine from the engine
compartment. It does it while both driving and just sitting at idle in
neutral (makes hitting Sonic embarassing). I've used a
stethoscope-type sound probe to try to isolate the sound and checked
the serpentine belt idler, the A/C compressor (with the A/C off and
on), the P/S pump, the water pump, and the alternator with no luck on
finding the source of the noise. I then checked both valve covers and
the main intake runner (coming from the air filter snorkel) and didn't
locate the sound.

What I finally found was that there are two devices on the driver's
side of the intake plenum (the black plastic-like thing that runs above
the engine, coming from the rubber snorkel to the air filter); one that
is cylindrical with an electric connection on it and one that is flat,
about 2 inches tall by 3 inches long with an electrical connection to
it with three wires.

That last device seems to be the source of the humming/buzzying/whining
noise. It is about 1/2 inch thick (and 2" high by 3" wide, as I
mentioned) and has two small hoses running to the bottom of it and
coming from a tube that connects to the exhaust manifold. I don't know
what it does, but I tried disconnecting the electric connector and that
didn't make any difference in the sound. However, it seems to be the
source of the noise, the best that I can tell.

Has anyone else had any problems like this? Can anyone tell me what
that device is that I'm describing on the driver's-side of the intake
plenum? More importantly, can anybody tell me what to do to get rid of
the noise?

Thanks in advance.

--HC

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Old 09-11-2005, 16:01   #2 (permalink)
HC
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Re: 1997 Ford Ranger 4.0 weird engine humming/whining

Seem to have found what it was...the Idle Air Control Valve, the
cylindrical device I mentioned in my original post. For some reason
the vibration didn't seem to be evident there but rather in the flat
device below it. I took it to a friend who's a mechanic and he thought
it was the IACV, so I took it off the truck (two bolts and an
electrical connection) and cleaned it out with some Carb and Choke
cleaner spray (holding it with the solenoid part above the valve body
so it wouldn't flow into the solenoid part) and let it dry. Then I
hosed it down with some silicone spray and worked the valve back and
forth with my finger to make sure the silicone worked into the gap
between the shaft from the solenoid and the body of the valve.
Finally, I wiped down the inside of the throttle body (which says not
to clean it because of some special coating it's got...but I did at the
recommendation of my mechanic friend...but I used some diluted Simple
Green to try to avoid damaging whatever magic coating Ford claims
they've put in the throttle body) to try to minimize the amount of air
that would need to pass through the IACV (I dunno if it makes any
difference but my mechanic friend said to do so, so I tried it.

Anyway, after doing that the truck runs much quieter with none of the
whine that I was complaining about in my original post. I checked with
Autozone and they sell the IACV for this truck for only $41.99 and
their site indicates that it's available in the store so if this
cleaning and lubricating doesn't provide a long-term solution to my
problem then I'll just replace it.

Hope that'll help somebody.

--HC

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Old 09-11-2005, 17:01   #3 (permalink)
Spdloader
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Re: 1997 Ford Ranger 4.0 weird engine humming/whining

They all need to be cleaned and lubed over time. Even if you bought a new
one, you'd just be buying a clean one. Save your money until you need to buy
one, and just keep yours serviced.

Spdloader




"HC" <hboothe@gte.net> wrote in message
news:1126478014.745635.275850@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> Seem to have found what it was...the Idle Air Control Valve, the
> cylindrical device I mentioned in my original post. For some reason
> the vibration didn't seem to be evident there but rather in the flat
> device below it. I took it to a friend who's a mechanic and he thought
> it was the IACV, so I took it off the truck (two bolts and an
> electrical connection) and cleaned it out with some Carb and Choke
> cleaner spray (holding it with the solenoid part above the valve body
> so it wouldn't flow into the solenoid part) and let it dry. Then I
> hosed it down with some silicone spray and worked the valve back and
> forth with my finger to make sure the silicone worked into the gap
> between the shaft from the solenoid and the body of the valve.
> Finally, I wiped down the inside of the throttle body (which says not
> to clean it because of some special coating it's got...but I did at the
> recommendation of my mechanic friend...but I used some diluted Simple
> Green to try to avoid damaging whatever magic coating Ford claims
> they've put in the throttle body) to try to minimize the amount of air
> that would need to pass through the IACV (I dunno if it makes any
> difference but my mechanic friend said to do so, so I tried it.
>
> Anyway, after doing that the truck runs much quieter with none of the
> whine that I was complaining about in my original post. I checked with
> Autozone and they sell the IACV for this truck for only $41.99 and
> their site indicates that it's available in the store so if this
> cleaning and lubricating doesn't provide a long-term solution to my
> problem then I'll just replace it.
>
> Hope that'll help somebody.
>
> --HC
>



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Old 09-12-2005, 14:04   #4 (permalink)
Backyard Mechanic
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Posts: n/a
Re: 1997 Ford Ranger 4.0 weird engine humming/whining

I recall doinfg a search on the IAC sometime back and ran across a thread
where the same symptom seemed to be common on some foreign car or truck...
Was it GM or Jeep, cant recall? ;)

"HC" <hboothe@gte.net> wrote in news:1126478014.745635.275850
@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com:

.....
> Anyway, after doing that the truck runs much quieter with none of the
> whine that I was complaining about in my original post. I checked with
> Autozone and they sell the IACV for this truck for only $41.99 and
> their site indicates that it's available in the store so if this
> cleaning and lubricating doesn't provide a long-term solution to my
> problem then I'll just replace it.
>
> Hope that'll help somebody.
>
> --HC
>


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Old 09-12-2005, 16:01   #5 (permalink)
HC
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Re: 1997 Ford Ranger 4.0 weird engine humming/whining

Not sure, but the concept seems to be beautifully simple; we need a way
to bypass the butterfly to adjust the idle of the engine and we want to
be able to let the computer control it...boom...IACV. Sweet. So I
would think a lot of more recent vehicles would have them...just
guessing.

If I was to take an educated guess at what foreign stuff would have it
it would be Mazda 'cause Ford and Mazda sleep in the same bad and have
for years (Explorer=Navajo, B series = Ranger, etc.)

FWIW

--HC

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Old 09-12-2005, 18:01   #6 (permalink)
Backyard Mechanic
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Re: 1997 Ford Ranger 4.0 weird engine humming/whining

"HC" <hboothe@gte.net> wrote in news:1126564456.100367.65300
@g49g2000cwa.googlegroups.com:

> Not sure, but the concept seems to be beautifully simple; we need a way
> to bypass the butterfly to adjust the idle of the engine and we want to
> be able to let the computer control it...boom...IACV. Sweet. So I
> would think a lot of more recent vehicles would have them...just
> guessing.
>
> If I was to take an educated guess at what foreign stuff would have it
> it would be Mazda 'cause Ford and Mazda sleep in the same bad and have
> for years (Explorer=Navajo, B series = Ranger, etc.)
>
> FWIW
>
> --HC
>


I'm thinkin' they ALL have them. How else you gonna do it with port
injection.
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Old 09-13-2005, 08:01   #7 (permalink)
HC
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Posts: n/a
Re: 1997 Ford Ranger 4.0 weird engine humming/whining

I'm not sure, I'm not an engineer by training. But, guessing I could
see a throttle stop working (like on a traditional carbureted vehicle),
and easily an electrically actuated gizmo (like a worm-gear setup) to
move the throttle butterfly more open or closed as needed (like an
automatic throttle stop). Who knows what else some engineer might come
up with. I'm just saying that I don't *know* if all vehicles have
them...not saying that it's practical, probable, or possible to do it
any other way; just trying to be as accurate as possible so I don't
mislead someone else who comes along and reads this; my purpose in
posting my results was only to help others so if I don't bother to be
precise and accurate in stating what I *know*, what I *think*, and what
I certainly don't know then I'm not really helping anyone.

--HC

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