How to Replace the Timing Belt in a 1993 Ford Ranger

by Cayden Conor

The 1993 Ford Ranger uses both the 2.0L and a 2.3L engine. Both engines follow the same timing belt procedure. Ford identifies both engines as freewheeling engines. This means that should the belt stretch past its useful life, chances are low that extensive engine damage will occur. Ford does not recommend a specific interval between changes of the timing belt, but all timing belts eventually stretch enough that they must be changed. Previous service use and history suggests that you change the timing belt every 60,000 miles, so that it doesn’t leave you stranded, should the timing belt stretch too much.

Step 1

Disconnect the negative battery cable and lay it aside. Ensure that it does not touch metal. Remove the accessory drive belt by moving the drive belt tensioner away from the belt using a wrench or socket. Lift the belt off the pulleys. Remove the radiator cooling fan and the water pump pulley using the appropriate sockets.

Step 2

Label the spark plug wires so that you know where they go when you put the Ranger back together. Remove all four wires by pulling them off the spark plugs. Remove the spark plugs using the spark plug socket.

Step 3

Find top dead center by inserting the screwdriver in the number 1 spark plug hole (the one that is closest to the timing belt). The firing order for both engines is 1-3-4-2. Turn the crankshaft clockwise until you feel the screwdriver stop moving. Check the timing mark on the crankshaft. The pointer should line up with the 0 mark on the scale. If not, turn the engine over via the crankshaft once more, until the screwdriver stops moving and the pointer is on the 0 mark.

Step 4

Look through the hole in the timing belt cover to check that the camshaft marks are lined up. Remove the distributor cap using a screwdriver. Make sure the rotor is pointing to the number 1 cylinder (the cylinder closest to the timing belt).

Step 5

Remove the crankshaft pulley bolt using a socket. Pull the pulley off. Remove the timing belt cover and the timing belt guide using the appropriate sockets. Check that the timing marks on the idler are lined up at the 12 o’clock position.

Step 6

Loosen the tensioner bolts, then release tension on the belt by using a prybar to push the tensioner away from the belt. Tighten the tensioner bolts enough to hold the tensioner in place. Lift the timing belt off the sprockets.

Step 7

Check the new belt to ensure that it matches the old belt. The 2.0L and 2.3L Ford Ranger engines use a square-toothed or round-toothed belt, depending on which factory the truck came from. Check to be sure that all three timing marks are still lined up and that the rotor is still pointing at the number 1 cylinder.

Step 8

Install the timing belt, starting on the crankshaft sprocket and working in a counterclockwise direction over all the sprockets, except the tensioner. The timing belt is routed behind the tensioner. Keep the belt tight between the crankshaft sprocket, the idler pulley and the camshaft sprocket on the non-tensioned side of the engine.

Step 9

Loosen the tensioner bolt so that the tensioner puts pressure on the timing belt. Turn the crankshaft clockwise two times until the timing marks line up again. If the timing marks do not line up, remove the belt, and repeat the installation process.

Step 10

Tighten the tensioner bolt to 35 foot-pounds of torque. Install the rest of the parts in reverse order of removal. Torque the crankshaft pulley bolt to 123 foot-pounds of torque.

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