I'm new so, if this has been answered before, please point me to it.
I bought a '97 Ranger 4WD
Extra Cab 4.0 V6, 1.5 years ago. I heard another buyer say he thought the head gaskets were bad as it idled a little rough but ran well otherwise. I bought it and found that the EGR
was stuck partially open by tapping on it with a screwdriver handle. After that, I disconnected the EGR
's vacuum line and it's run and idled fine ever since. Fast-Forward to 2weeks ago...
We've moved from PA to IL and the truck made it out here at 75 MPH, no problem. Then, suddenly it overheats one day and I find that the Radiator's empty! Refill the radiator and when I restart it in the morning, it bucks and chugs and gives a lot of white smoke out the tailpipe. After a few minutes, it warms up and runs better. NOW I'm thinking head gasket and I try some Bars Leak Head Gasket Fix. It improves things and slows down the leak but the engine still runs rough after sitting for a few hours (water slowly leaking into the cylinder(s) at rest?).
Now the valves are making a lot of noise in the morning too. I added some oil to top it off but they still rattle for a few minutes while it's warming up.
Any ideas besides, "You're Screwed, Dude!"