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Old 02-02-2011, 08:19 AM
MrO MrO is offline
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Default Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

I've been browsing around these forums for a couple of months now and I've found plenty of useful information on a bunch of topics that interest my ranger and I, but I can't seem to find anything for what I'm specifically having trouble with.

I've got a 'plain jane' standard everything(roll up windows, manual locks, manual trans) single cab '02 ranger(2.3 4cyl) that i bought back in 05 and I've really not had to do too much to keep it running aside from changing tires, spark plugs and wires, the fuel and oil filters(and other little scheduled maintenance things). There is one major thing that has been killing me since day one when i bought it right after we recovered from hurricane katrina down here... The evil plauging suspension. I know a little about trucks and cars but not enough to do more than forementioned routine maintenance so i cant figure out what is wrong with this thing. My buddy says he's had 3 ford made cars and they all have had suspension issues so I dont think its my ranger in particular and maybe lots of ford owners deal with this problem.

So the symptoms are as follows(since i bought the truck): It is like I have nothing under my truck to soften blows when i hit cracks, railroad crossings, manholes, speed bumps, or worst of all, potholes. I will hit a manhole going 35-40 mph and my entire truck shakes the interior rattles, and my rearview has come off once. while driving I'm dodging manholes, twigs and anything that looks like a pebble in the road in order to protect my truck. When i go over something it feels like i've got to be doing some serious damage to something under the truck. It is uncomfortable to ride in the truck(as if being 6'2 in a single cab bench seated manual shifting cab where not enough) because it feels like there is no cushion at all between the road and me.

I've waiting too long and I'm just fed up with it, so I was wondering if any of you guys who know a thing or two could please dish in with your two cents to help me find out whats wrong. I was wondering if other ranger owners had any problems like this. Also I was wondering what do you think is wrong with it and what could have made it that bad. And finally how much does something like this usually cost to get repaired?
I'm just confused and aggravated at the same time.
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:24 AM
01_ranger_4x4 01_ranger_4x4 is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

have you ever replaced the shocks as well as heve the suspension wear components checked/ replaced? (ball joints, wheel bearings, tie rods, bushings ect.) shocks make a huge difference and they dont last the life of a vehicle. also keep in mind that its a truck, with stiff truck suspension so it will never ride like a car.
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:35 AM
MrO MrO is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 01_ranger_4x4 View Post
have you ever replaced the shocks as well as heve the suspension wear components checked/ replaced? (ball joints, wheel bearings, tie rods, bushings ect.).

I bought the truck with around 70k miles on it and its 5yrs late at 119k and i can honestly say i've never got any of it looked at or changed out. Probably was never looked at by the previous owner as well(probably why he sold it!!!). Its just unreal how much noise and movement i get when i hit a bump. Can a do it yourselfer install shocks with proper instructions or would i be better off leaving that task to a mechanic?
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:36 AM
blkranger231 blkranger231 is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

02 its now 11 I would say its time to replace the shocks, ball joints, check the tie rods if you have replaced any of this i would say its pretty wore out by now. While your in there might be a good idea to chesck the wheel bearings as well
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:35 AM
MrO MrO is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

one of you two wouldnt happen to know how much money, on average, one would pay for that type of work do you?
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:39 AM
terryduanemiller terryduanemiller is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

def change shocks.. check front sway bar links as well.. OEM's are known to fail
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:36 AM
blkranger231 blkranger231 is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

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Originally Posted by MrO View Post
one of you two wouldnt happen to know how much money, on average, one would pay for that type of work do you?
My wife took mine in a got a qoute of about 2000 for the ball joints shocks front and rear, brakes front and rear. Yeah I told em to shove that ordered everything from Rockauto.com for around 500 I think and did it all myself very easy to do. Remember the upper arms has the ball joint made into it so it comes as a new upper.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:41 AM
ssp2979 ssp2979 is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

I replaced the shocks on my 2000 just a few months ago because I was having similar problems as you describe them. I paid $120 for front and back and did it myself. Wasn't really very hard at all, but I am mechanically inclined (some what). If you're not an automotive do-it-yourselfer I'd rate this activity with an intermediate difficulty.

Also, my ball joints are worn out and need replacing too. I priced those out at $300 for upper and lower, again doing it myself.
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:14 AM
Clinton Clinton is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

In my experience that has alot to do with tires and shocks. start with the shocks first, then make sure the air in your tires are good along with the tread
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:24 AM
MTman777 MTman777 is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

i did my balljoints and tie rod ends last summer... kinda difficult if youve never done it before... and its highly recomended to have air tools... bolts are very difficult to loosen... and spraying everything with penetrating oil helps...
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  #11  
Old 02-03-2011, 05:50 AM
MrO MrO is offline
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Default Re: Suspension from Hell(whats wrong with this thing)

Thanks guys, I think I'll change my shocks myself since it seems pretty simple, and i've priced 2 rear and 2 front for around 100 bucks. I'm going the cheap route since anything I get has got to be better than what i've got going on in there now. I'm also going to look into ball joints but i've got no air tools or knowledge of all that, so I'll take the truck to the shop for that. I'd like to thank you all for helping me out and giving me advice so quickly. I'm definitely going going to be a returning member to the ranger forum. Thanks again guys.
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