Question about 2002 Ford Ranger Regular Cab

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I am not a mechanic and need step by step instructions on changing the darn think so I don't waste $160 for the part

Biggest problem is I am a firefighter and not a mechanic. My 02 ranger does not get hot at all. I suspect my thermostat is stuck open, but it's not just a $12 part anymore. I don't even know where to start when putting the darn thing in and $160 for thepart is a bit much to screw up. Help!

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  • feltner22 Apr 24, 2009

    It's an 02 Ford Ranger 2.3 Liter, 2 wheel drive. I went to the parts store and two mechanics and the cheapest if ound the part was $160 because in that year ranger they dont just sell the thermostat, they sell the entire assembly. The last mechnaic was telling me it would cost about $380 to get this done in less than an hour. Can this be right?

  • joecoolvette
    joecoolvette May 11, 2010

    With all do respect, as I respect our nations Firefighters, I need to know what exact engine size you have, and if the truck is 2 wheel drive, or 4 wheel.

    I AM a mechanic, and in none of my parts books, do I see a thermostat that costs over $14 bucks! Come back and tell me, and I'll tell you Step By Step, on how to replace that thermostat.

    If the guys at the station house told you it was $160 bucks, they're pulling your leg.

    2002 Ford Ranger, right?


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Feltner22, your information was correct sir, and I Stand corrected!
I have over 20 years in the business, but don't claim to know everything. Should have called the Ford dealers I know, and asked
first, before I spouted off.

I did call them now, and even if you have the 2.3 Liter MFI Double Overhead Cam, (DOHC), or the single overhead cam, the thermostat comes with the housing, gasket, and sensor.

$140 is the price range here. (Midwest)
Hard to get part, also.

$220 bucks labor charge? Here the shop hour is $65. Manhour book time is 3.1 hours. (Not everything falls in the realm, of by the manhour. Just when everything's going smooth, a 'Backdraft' comes up!)

As for you taking it on, with all due respect, If you have some firefighters, or friends with a pretty good background in the automotive/diesel field, go for it. Otherwise I would suggest abstaining from it.

Those Chilton books, and Haynes, are a piece of junk. You can pretty well bet, they don't have the 2.3 thermostat housing change, in it. Probably just the usual thermostat change, and touches very lightly on it. If you have a Motors Shop Manual, then you're 'Cookin' with gas'.

Posted on Apr 24, 2009

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  • Ford Master
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If you have no background in automotive repair, I highly recommend you spend the <$30 US for either a Haynes (1st choice) or a Chilton aftermarket service manual for your truck. You can often find these offered on eBay but are generally available in auto parts stores.
Either of them are well enough written to help you do just about any kind of maintenance other than things that require special tools such as wheel alignment for example.
We have never had a vehicle that we owned without buying the manual. Even if the work is more detailed than we want to tackle, we can at least assess the potential cost for professional repairs.

Posted on Apr 24, 2009

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