Cam synchronizer may be chirping

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768
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Alabama
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2002 Ford Ranger Edge 3.0L 67k miles I bought the truck today and I posted about it in the forum under an oil reccomendation for it. Some folks recommended that I listen for a chirping noise while in operation to signal that the synchronizer would need changing. While test driving prior to the purchase, I did not hear anything remotely related to a belt squealing or a "bird chirping" type of noise while on a 10ish mile stop and go test drive. I did however hear a chirping noise as I was riding around the walmart parking lot looking for a spot to pull in to. It was only really hearable while moving and not so much while stopped at idle. YouTube mechanics say the synchronizer usually fails or starts failing around the 60-75k mile area. I'm not really bummed out about it mainly since it is only a $65 part with the sensor at my local oreillys. How long can I go before it needs changing?
 
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768
Location
Alabama
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Originally Posted by oldhp
Chirps/squeaks when only moving. Sure it's not a u-joint?
Well idk. It doesn't chirp or squeal every time. I've driven it twice since the trip to walmart today and it didn't make the noise at all either time.
 
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137
Location
AR
That Cam synchronizer powers the oil pump, you can drive until the engine seizes up. With an unknown history I would change as preventive maintenance.
 
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768
Location
Alabama
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Originally Posted by joegreen
If you do need one I would go oem. I read about aftermarket not lasting that long.
Noted. I have been surfing websites for the best price on one.
 
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9,867
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Birmingham, AL
Faint chirping on a 17 year old Ranger in a parking lot can be a number of things. Mine screams bloody murder or bucks like crazy...I KNOW when it's the synchronizer. Replaced it twice. I soaked the last one in Mobil 1 5w30 before install and it has outlasted the others, knock on wood. 231K on my truck. And yes, as far as I know, you still need to stick to Motorcraft on this part.
 
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768
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Alabama
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Originally Posted by 01rangerxl
Faint chirping on a 17 year old Ranger in a parking lot can be a number of things. Mine screams bloody murder or bucks like crazy...I KNOW when it's the synchronizer. Replaced it twice. I soaked the last one in Mobil 1 5w30 before install and it has outlasted the others, knock on wood. 231K on my truck. And yes, as far as I know, you still need to stick to Motorcraft on this part.
Gotcha. I am pricing motor craft and other brands at the moment to see what I can find.
 
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471
Location
Canada
As a test, pop the cap off the synchronizer and squeeze some motor oil in there to see if the chirping noise goes away. This is a test only...if it is determined that it is indeed the synchronizer making the noise, replace it. The shaft rides on a bushing that sees no splash lubrication so that's why I make it a habit to lube the synchronizer on every oil change. I drilled a hole in the cap, then put a rubber plug on it. To lube it all I have to do is use a syringe filled with oil, pop the cap, and squeeze. It's also a good idea to pull the entire synchronizer assembly out to see if the gear teeth are worn out. Just be super careful and mark the position before pulling because it's critical to get it back in the exact same way.
 
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768
Location
Alabama
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I'm off until the 8th so I have plenty of time to get this done. First thing in the morning I am going to pull and replace the entire synchronizer assembly. Makes more sense right now especially given that all of the mileage indicators from online articles and forums suggest that I am in prime CMP failure territory with having the original synchro still installed and I have all telltale signs at this point. Rough idle, poor gas mileage, intermittent chirping etc.
 
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5,682
Location
Atlanta
Originally Posted by NavyVet88
...Rough idle, poor gas mileage, ...
don't count on the synchronizer fixing those two... grin2 IME that is just the way it is with a 3.0 Ranger. The synchronizer sounds like a belt squeaking in the back of the engine...
 

Kestas

Staff member
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The Motor City
I just replaced the cam synchronizer on my Mercury with 100K. There was always a lot of chirping from the belt area, but that wasn't the problem. This time chirping was from the synchronizer. Some people get fooled by belt chirp. For all the surfing I've done on the internet for information, consensus indicates you should replace it with OEM Motorcraft brand.
 
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1,315
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NY
Originally Posted by DuckRyder
Originally Posted by NavyVet88
...Rough idle, poor gas mileage, ...
don't count on the synchronizer fixing those two... grin2 IME that is just the way it is with a 3.0 Ranger. The synchronizer sounds like a belt squeaking in the back of the engine...
My 98 3.0 ranger idles smooth and gets 15-18 average mpg and 20mpg on the highway. It's pretty decent.
 
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Atlanta
Originally Posted by joegreen
My 98 3.0 ranger idles smooth and gets 15-18 average mpg and 20mpg on the highway. It's pretty decent.
I suppose everything is relative but I don't consider 15-18 in a little truck with just adequate power very good and no it doesn't idle like it does with a bad coil pack all the time, but it is not exactly smooth and refined, either...
 
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My synchro failed at 55K miles on a 04 Ranger Edge 3.0. The good thing about the 3.0 is that the synchro is relatively easy to access and change. I too would recommend the MotorCraft part, and use the timing tool to set the synchro timing.
 
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9,867
Location
Birmingham, AL
Maybe Dorman has improved, but several years ago it was the brand to avoid. Many were failing around 10K miles. A1 Cardone was considered barely acceptable only because they were rebuilt Motorcraft. Keep the old one just in case.
 
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5,682
Location
Atlanta
Originally Posted by dogememe
I'm sorry but that Dorman part was a mistake. Start saving up for a Motorcraft smile
Yup, Dorman is widely reported to be junk. Motorcraft is not that expensive. Alignment tool isn't either...
 
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