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Old 07-21-2010, 04:12 PM
memphisnathan memphisnathan is offline
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Default 2004 3.0L cam shaft sensor. Help!

Hello. I drive a 2004 3.0L 5 speed manual ranger. I'm not the richest guy in the world and I always seem to have car trouble. I just purchased a 2004 Ranger. I'm tired of paying hundreds of dollars to have mechanics do things so Ive been trying to fix the problems on it myself. I don't really know anything about cars but I just replaced the alternator myself and it was an extremely pleasing feeling. Anyways about a month ago I started to notice that when i started to come to a stop i would press the clutch in and, without touching the gas, the engine would rev up about 3000 rpm. Also when cruising down the highway, without touching the clutch and barely touching the gas, the engine would would start jerking. The jerking would last but a few seconds, but enough for me to know something was wrong. Well in the last week when I come up to a stop i would press the clutch and brake down and the engine would lose revs till the car just turned off. When I try to turn it back on it would have trouble turning. The only way to keep the car from dying is to rev it up as I come to a stop and once I am at a complete stop I have to keep it revved up. There is also a small squealing coming from the engine. I had a mechanic just look at it. He took the car for a spin, but of course it worked just fine when he drove it. He also said the belts in my car are fine and that the cam position sensor is going bad. This morning the check engine light came on also. Could this be the cause of my problem? Would a bad sensor cause my car to squeal? Any help would be much appreciated.
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Old 07-21-2010, 04:30 PM
OH MY JOSH OH MY JOSH is offline
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Default Re: 2004 3.0L cam shaft sensor. Help!

Cam sensor is a magnetic sensor that reads camshaft revolution off a reluctor wheel on the cam.
As the camshaft rotates, the reluctor wheel "pulses" the CPS (camshaft position sensor) and sends that reading back to the ecu.
In accordance with the crankshaft sensor, they're used to help the ecu know the accurate vehicle mechanical timing.
A bad or weakened CPS will cause poor idle, no starts, and so forth.
Being as it's giving you a DTC (diagnostic trouble code), your best bet first off is to connect the vehicle to an OBDII Scanner and have the code pulled.
The code will be a Pxxxx (X's representing numbers). Then look that code up and it will aid you in the process.
It could be a faulty CPS, but it could also be a wiring problem such as low voltage to CPS, etc.

Your on the right track man, just run it over to an Auto-Zone or something and they can pull the codes.
if it is the CPS, do yourself a favor and buy a Ford oem sensor, you'll save yourself so much headache.

The squeal is either the belt or a pulley bearing more than likely.
My 2002 3.0 5spd squealed, and I traced it to be a worn bearing in my tensioner pulley.
Not saying thats your problem, but it could be.
Pull the belt off and spin each pulley by hand and see if any of them feel stiff, worn, or loose.

Any other questions I'll be glad to help man.
ASE / Nissan / Hyundai / GM Certified Technician.
"I make slow shit go fast, and fast shit go faster".
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Old 07-22-2010, 09:10 AM
memphisnathan memphisnathan is offline
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Default Re: 2004 3.0L cam shaft sensor. Help!

I really appreciate the help. I called the mechanic one more time at the shop to confirm and he said it's definitly the cam sensor squeaking. The belts are all in good condition. They are charging $250 to $300 to replace it. If I was to get the ford OEM sensor would you think it could solve my problems and save me some cash if I installed it myself?
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Old 07-22-2010, 11:42 AM
littleblue littleblue is offline
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Default Re: 2004 3.0L cam shaft sensor. Help!

The squeak is probably the CPS (camshaft position sensor/sychro). Ditto to what Oh My Josh said about buying a Ford unit and getting the codes checked. Other than the squeak the symptons you describe could also be a TPS (throttle position sensor) and/or IAC (idle air control) valve going bad. Without having the codes read you will never know for sure. Its a good idea to replace the CPS regardless because they are known to destroy an engine if they go bad.
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2004, 3.0l, cam position sensor, revs, squeal

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