Help Me Fix this poor 2002 Explorer


Asked by Apr 01, 2015 at 10:41 PM about the 2002 Ford Explorer XLT 4WD

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Ok first this is going to be a long post....Im sorry..we have done tons of stuff:(
First it started out with that the car stopped pulling on the interstate. Foot down to the floor was only going about 30mpg or less. Got it hauled home. Husband changed spark plugs and wires. Then sounded like it was missing so husband changed the coil pack. no improvement, when unplugged mass air sensor sounded better so replaced that. At this point we got it hauled to a mechanic (little did we know they where horrible, kept car over 2 months and had to threaten with law enforcement to get them to release the car after promising to bring it home for over a week) they said that there was a injector not working (replaced) and was looking for a valve that was making run ritch. Then suddenly called and said it had jumped time and they would not fix it. So got it hauled home.
There was a spark plug not in the whole way (turned out was crossthreaded) once husband got it in more it started and ran a little better. So drove it to my local mechanic that is well trusted around here. RPMs would get a little low but did ok, no problems pulling.
Got it back 2 days later they used helix on crossthreaded spark plug and replaced the coil pack again (said was not firing on 1&2). Ran better for about 2 miles then started struggling. They had already told us that the serptine belt and 02 sensors needed replaced. So did belt and the downstream 02 sensors (when tested had only output of .010 and less. Ran a little better nut still rough. Pulled upstream ones and they would get up to around .800 and then cool down fast so reinstalled. When started now has a loud noise under hood (like a bang) that comes and goes. We are so lost! Please help. we are low on funds, still paying for this poor car and I haven't had a car to myself in over 3 yrs (which means I get dropped off at work up to 6 hrs early.

1 Answer


Ok, first things first. What trouble codes are you getting? With all of this going on the check engine light must be on. The downstream oxygen sensor(s) have absolutely nothing to do with the engine running. Their only purpose is to monitor the catalytic converter(s). If you're getting a catalytic converter trouble code the catalytic converter(s) may be clogged and restricting the flow of exhaust. This will cause lack of power, among other things. If you have excessive back pressure in the exhaust system, ahead of the catalytic converter(s) and the exhaust system is not visibly damaged the converter is clogged. You may also have excessive fuel pressure from a bad fuel pressure regulator (rich condition). A bad purge valve on the EVAP system can cause a rich condition as well. Are the spark plugs getting gasoline fouled (wet and smell of gas)? That's a sure sign of a rich air/fuel mixture. If the engine had truly jumped timing, it wouldn't run at all. HTH. -Jim

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