Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

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Salamon
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Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Salamon »

Hi all
I just logged into this forum to pass on the solution to my PX Ranger XLT (May 2014) overheating when towing heavy trailers up hills. The vehicle had no problem driving anywhere when not towing and towed just fine on the flat. Turns out the cooling system on these vehicles are amazing and only call on the fan when pulling heavy loads up hills. After 9 months of grief it took the third dealership to listen to my symptoms and say. “Sounds Like the clutch in the fan is faulty”. They fitted a new fan and its now back to its old self. Hope this helps if you’re having the same problem.
Frank S.
NTMID8
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by NTMID8 »

i took my ranger in to the dealership complaining that my AC wasnt overly cold and they found that my engine fan wasnt fully engaging. According to them there is a known fault with them and are on back order
edjenjudi
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by edjenjudi »

Hi all.
Just adding my 2 cents worth to this post.
My June 2014 PX Ranger started to show overheating problems as soon as i started towing our 3200Kg caravan up long steep hills, no problem on flat ground or normal hilly roads and certainly no problem without the caravan on.
I have taken it to Ford dealers in Liverpool, Broome and Esperance for service each 10,000 km and told them it was overheating but each time i was told they could find no codes showing a problem. The first time i did not know what codes were but i know now. The cars computer records any irregularities and saves them as a code that can be read from the computer with the correct tool plugged into the car.
The worst time was towing the van up Horricks Pass in South Australia. It is a slow climb for the first 5km then very steep for the next 10km. The car stopped four times going up the hill as the computer puts the motor into limp mode, slowly putting less and less fuel into the motor (to protect the motor from damage). This is a good thing if you have room to pull off the road somewhere to let the system cool down, but believe me if there is no room to pull off the road semitrailers behind you get very upset when you rig stops in the middle of the road in front of them for 10 minutes. We also stopped in the middle of the road going up Victoria Pass in NSW 50 meters from the top, at least this time there were two lanes going up the hill.
To try and solve the problem i replaced the thermostat with a high flow one, it made no difference.
I had an external automatic transmission cooler fitted and a transmission digital temperature gauge fitted, it made no difference.
I had the radiator removed opened up and cleaned out, no difference.
The owner of the radiator place in Parramatta has the same 2014 PX ranger and he tows a big trailer with a racing car inside it, total weight over 4,100Kg and tows it all over Australia with no temperature problems at all.
I ask every traveller we meet on the road towing a caravan with a PX Ranger if they have any overheating problem. They all say no. In June 2016 I met another traveller in far north Queensland with a PX Ranger towing a caravan who did have the exact same problem and he took a photograph of the temperature gauge with his mobile phone and showed the Ford dealer at Bundaberg in QLD and was told it may be the viscous coupling for the cooling fan not engaging properly. They replaced the coupling with a new one under warranty and the problem was solved.
My next Ford dealer was at Mareeba in QLD. They booked me in to test the overheating problem but once again said they could find no codes indicating a problem. I told him I would hook up my caravan, tow it up the steep hills to Ravenshoe and take a photo of the temperature gauge with my mobile phone and bring it back and show him that the problem did exist. On the way to Ravenshoe the temperature gauge did get up into the red zone and i was able to pull off the road and take a photo of it. We stopped a Ravenshoe for lunch and the phone rang, it was Ford Mareeba to say Ford had made a decision to replace the viscous coupling on the cooling fan under Warranty.
On 27-6-2016 at 44,290Km Ford replaced the viscous fan coupling under warranty.
Since then we have towed the caravan up some big long hills to Cooktown and back then to Ravenshoe and the temperature has not even reached half way.
The viscous fan coupling on Toyota Land Cruisers have a grub screw in them that allows extra silicone grease to be added to them, the ford ranger does not so has to be replaced if it is faulty.
I f your PX Ranger is overheating towing up long steep hills it may be your vicious fan coupling not engaging properly. Take a photo of your temperature gauge when it is in the red zone to show your Ford dealer.
I hope this helps someone else with PX overheating problems. Please post if it does.
Edward.
mezza56
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by mezza56 »

Thanks for that edjenjudi
I don't have that problem but who knows when it may occur , really good info to put in the back of the mind in case one day I need it or meet someone who does .
Mezza
Craig001
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Craig001 »

Thank you for the post I tow an off road van and a camper trailer. Really appreciate the heads up on potential overheating SOLUTIONS.
2016 XLT Auto Supercab
Touring Canopy + Accessories

Cheers Craig.
bttinsey
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by bttinsey »

thanks for the post as my vehicle is do the same ,runs normal on the flat and climbs just short of the red when towing my 2800kg caravan up long hills so I be getting my mechanic to change my fan clutch and I will keep you posted on result. thanks bttinsey
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ROCKET0407
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by ROCKET0407 »

10/10 for that one Ed, well done.
Cheers.


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Hoyks
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Hoyks »

If doing it your self, you can remove the fan and hub from the vehicle.
Lay it flat on a work surface and use a screwdriver to remove the screws holding the fan hub together,
Go to Toyota and get a tube of Toyota Viscous Fan Clutch silicone/oil, its under $20 and the spare parts guy should know what you are on about as they sell a fair amount of the stuff.
http://www.allfourx4.com.au/Silicone-Fl ... us-Fan-Hub

Squirt the tube into the hub and re assemble.

I had to do it on my old wagon as it didn't like a North Queensland summer. There are a few youtube clips showing you how to do it if in doubt.
lincolnland
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by lincolnland »

I still think a thermo fan in place of the crank driven unit is a good idea with a fan controller of a temp of your choice. Davies craig make some great fans. Aussie made, and all the accessories to easily fit it. Remove the crank fan and clutch gain a coupler kw and never overheat again!
Trublu
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Trublu »

lincolnland wrote:I still think a thermo fan in place of the crank driven unit is a good idea with a fan controller of a temp of your choice. Davies craig make some great fans. Aussie made, and all the accessories to easily fit it. Remove the crank fan and clutch gain a coupler kw and never overheat again!
Well put one in & report back to us how good it is, I've been waiting for someone to do this mod.

Cheers.
lincolnland
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by lincolnland »

trublu wrote:
lincolnland wrote:I still think a thermo fan in place of the crank driven unit is a good idea with a fan controller of a temp of your choice. Davies craig make some great fans. Aussie made, and all the accessories to easily fit it. Remove the crank fan and clutch gain a coupler kw and never overheat again!
Well put one in & report back to us how good it is, I've been waiting for someone to do this mod.

Cheers.
Got it on my big block car and makes the world of diff. Got a moroso 80 degree thermo control. Works insanely well, and the ranger isnt gunner cop 6000+ rpm for extended periods in the competition arena. Ill look at converting the ranger in the next few months as time permits. Stay tuned...
NTMID8
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by NTMID8 »

The issue is that an elec fan will never be able to draw as much air as the crank driven fan
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Big Trev
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Big Trev »

The viscous coupling fault is not new, my 1989 Ford Maverick (Nissan Patrol) had one turn pear shape when we in Tassie in 1997.

It is the first thing I mention to people who have overheating issues with diesels
2016 PXII XLS LE Ranger - daily
1997 EL Fairmont Ghia - project
1966 XP Falcon Hardtop (coupe) - weekender
Roger Wagga
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Roger Wagga »

Hi all, enjoyed reading the posts regarding Rangers overheating when towing on hills, mine has started only this week. A mechanic showed me how to do simple test on fan clutch, and sure enough it fails.

Simply drive vehicle to operating temperature, pull up and rev engine to about 2500 rpm and see if fan is sounding like it is pulling air through at full flow.

Then turn engine off and if the clutch is not working the fan will continue to spin or be very easy to spin by hand, instead of being engaged to drive the fan properly.
That is my experience and Ford are replacing it now and under warranty. Hope more people are learnig about this :)
Roger
bttinsey
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by bttinsey »

bttinsey wrote:thanks for the post as my vehicle is do the same ,runs normal on the flat and climbs just short of the red when towing my 2800kg caravan up long hills so I be getting my mechanic to change my fan clutch and I will keep you posted on result. thanks bttinsey
Had fan clutch replaced and radiator cleaned and my mechanic found the intercooler fins where blocked with a fine red dust , so everything been cleaned and refitted so everything is good and I tow the caravan and get back to you with the result
lincolnland
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by lincolnland »

fit a front mount thermo fan and youll be a1... cheers
LethalLeigh
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by LethalLeigh »

Another test is to use a long millet broom and put it in the fan at idle when cold and it should stop the fan as the clutch won't be engaged. Do it again when warm and it shouldn't stop the fan as it should be engaged. If it doesn't stop the fan when hot, the viscous clutch isn't doing its job.
butch.
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by butch. »

I hope all you blokes n girls are going to be Ranger meet at Horseshoe Bend on May 5,6 and 7. Be a good opportunity to talk about this topic. Cheers, Butch.
bttinsey
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by bttinsey »

bttinsey wrote:
bttinsey wrote:thanks for the post as my vehicle is do the same ,runs normal on the flat and climbs just short of the red when towing my 2800kg caravan up long hills so I be getting my mechanic to change my fan clutch and I will keep you posted on result. thanks bttinsey
Had fan clutch replaced and radiator cleaned and my mechanic found the intercooler fins where blocked with a fine red dust , so everything been cleaned and refitted so everything is good and I tow the caravan and get back to you with the result
still having issues with overheating so took it to dealership and told them every thing I had replaced so the technician said it sounds electrical problem so they check the history of the vehicle and found the computer had no updates done on it and found a over fuelling issue which was causing the overheating problem. updated the computer with the new software and pulls the caravan with no problems. bttinsey
bttinsey
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by bttinsey »

bttinsey wrote:thanks for the post as my vehicle is do the same ,runs normal on the flat and climbs just short of the red when towing my 2800kg caravan up long hills so I be getting my mechanic to change my fan clutch and I will keep you posted on result. thanks bttinsey
After going to 3 dealerships and no result to the overheating problem , a mates mate who just retired from NRMA roadside ,said pull out the radiator and fit a new one , so I did that and I removed the top tank of the old radiator to find 20 cores where partially blocked. so I have driven vehicle now with no fluctuation in temperature , so I hope this may help someone else in trying to find the overheating problem
lincolnland
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by lincolnland »

interesting find mate. cheers. had u changed coolant at required in service schedule over the journey?
edjenjudi
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by edjenjudi »

Hi all.
Update on overheating towing up hills.
We are up to 61,000ks now, have towed up many long hills and have not reached half temperature on the guage.

I forgot to put in my original post that at 28,000ks i fitted two Davies Craig 10 inch thermo fans including an led on the dash to show when they kick in and they worked but did not stop the overheating untill the main fan was replaced at Mareeba.


Edjenjudi
lincolnland
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by lincolnland »

any pics of the davies craig fitted up? be good at cooling the intercooler! look forward to seeing your setup. cheers
pilbarapump
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by pilbarapump »

I had an issue with my PX2 XLS auto (15000 Kms) last week. We were following friends in another vehicle that was slowly towing a camper trailer up a hill on a dirt track along the Snowy River in east Vic, when my ute went into limp mode.
I checked the gauges and it didn't show anything straight away, but after a short distance the temp gauge went up and the screen displayed a warning saying that the engine was overheating.
I shut it down and lifted the bonnet and it smelt hot, and when I span the fan by hand there was no resistance and it span easily. I started it up and gave a few revs, but the fan was still slow.
So we all sat there for a while and applied the 3 can rule while it cooled down. We only had 4 Ks to get to where we were going to camp, so I took the lead and drove a bit faster to get more air through the radiator.
We got there no worries and had a couple of easy days camped by the river. When we left it was early and cool, so we didn't have any more problems on the 150Km drive home.
I went to local Ford garage and told them the story and they said they would order a viscous hub in and replace it under warrantee. They said that they had replaced a few already.
So I'll see how it goes.
lincolnland
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by lincolnland »

Very clear here the solution was the 3 can rule. without fail, it works every single time. :) cheers
Hoyks
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Hoyks »

And you can also direct the resultant stream onto the radiator to aid thermal transfer. 8-)

If you really get stuck with a fan hub that won't engage and are at risk of cooking the engine; I have seen a tekscrew driven through the viscous hub so it is engaged all the time.

Of course, it won't be covered under warranty then.
MarkHopgood
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by MarkHopgood »

Hi, I have the 2014 Model. Currently experiencing the same problem with overheating when going up hills while towing my Coromal Caravan- Temp is fine While driving on normal conditions, I will get my Viscous Fan Replaced I’ll also get thermostat replaced at same time, I’ll let you know my results, thanks for this forum, from what I can see from other members that it will be the fan. Cheers
Highrider
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Highrider »

NTMID8 wrote: Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:38 pm i took my ranger in to the dealership complaining that my AC wasnt overly cold and they found that my engine fan wasnt fully engaging. According to them there is a known fault with them and are on back order
Engine fan, do you mean the fan which is cooling the radiator? My aircon is about the only thing that I am not happy with, I reckon it is very lackluster and then I put it on recirculating but it only just makes it bearable! I was think about getting the system re-gassed, did you get yours re-gassed? Did you have the fan replaced? I thought it was belt driven but I might be on the wrong page?
DaveC49
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by DaveC49 »

edjenjudi wrote: Sat Jul 30, 2016 1:29 pm Hi all.
Just adding my 2 cents worth to this post.
My June 2014 PX Ranger started to show overheating problems as soon as i started towing our 3200Kg caravan up long steep hills, no problem on flat ground or normal hilly roads and certainly no problem without the caravan on.
In June 2016 I met another traveller in far north Queensland with a PX Ranger towing a caravan who did have the exact same problem and he took a photograph of the temperature gauge with his mobile phone and showed the Ford dealer at Bundaberg in QLD and was told it may be the viscous coupling for the cooling fan not engaging properly. They replaced the coupling with a new one under warranty and the problem was solved.

On 27-6-2016 at 44,290Km Ford replaced the viscous fan coupling under warranty.
Since then we have towed the caravan up some big long hills to Cooktown and back then to Ravenshoe and the temperature has not even reached half way.

I f your PX Ranger is overheating towing up long steep hills it may be your vicious fan coupling not engaging properly. Take a photo of your temperature gauge when it is in the red zone to show your Ford dealer.
I hope this helps someone else with PX overheating problems. Please post if it does.
Edward.
Like you I have a June 2014 Ranger PX, mine’s a Wildtrak and I tow a 2700kg caravan. We have towed this van around Oz and over to Tassie without any hint of overheating, until recently. It has done trouble free 152,000 kms, and a lot of Kms towing. After Easter holidays we were approaching Accommodation Hill, which is the gateway into the Barossa Valley coming from Renmark. The approach to this hill is a long slight incline before starting a steep climb. The engine temperature was 105 and A/T 115 at the bottom of the hill, and as we started to climb, the car went into limp mode and the stability warning light come on. Fortunately I was able to pull off the road, let the engine run for a short time before turning it off. After a minute or so, I restarted the engine and all seemed normal. I have a Scan Gauge fitted and a diagnosis found no error codes. The ambient temperature was 35c and there was a slight dust storm.
After reading your post I checked my fan to see if the viscous clutch was working ok. At cold, it turns with a slight resistance, at normal operating temperature with engine running at idle, using a long bristled brush, I was not able to stop the blade from spinning. With engine off and normal operating temperature, I could turn the fan blade with only a slight resistance. I did not attempt to try to stop the blade spinning at 2500 rpm as some others suggest in similar posts as this seemed too dangerous.
With your experience, should I take the plunge and replace the viscous fan clutch? Are there any other tests you can suggest I could perform to see if I have a bad clutch?
lincolnland
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by lincolnland »

Yes, replace the clutch.
DaveC49
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by DaveC49 »

Thanks lincolnland. Looks like it’s my only option.
Bala
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Bala »

DaveC49 wrote: Sun May 02, 2021 3:48 pm Thanks lincolnland. Looks like it’s my only option.
Assuming you are not losing coolant. I don't even run at those temps you started the hill with.

Check the radiator, a.c. condenser and intercooler for blockage from insects and grass seeds.

I find with mine I need to keep rpm up to keep temps down. 6 speed auto in 4th at 90kph I can hear the fan doing it's job. Higher engine rpm means higher fan speed so I use gears to keep rpm up and temps down..

If I try to run in to higher gear then I will just get over fuel which means heat. I fitted a new fan clutch and made no difference.

It is much better now ambient temps are down in Qld but I have moved my trans cooler down to allow more air flow to the radiator and will clean the cooling find before next summer.

.
DaveC49
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by DaveC49 »

Thanks for your advice. I normally tow in 5th gear unless climbing hills when I manually change down to maintain revs. I’ve noticed the engine and AT temps have increased gradually over the past two years, even when towing on flat. Before this the temperature rises were minimal. The coolant level has remained the same for the last 50k so I’m not loosing any, however I am planning to replace the coolant with fresh. The radiator and intercooler fins look clean as I flush them regularly when washing the Ute but I will do a reverse flush from the fan side to be sure they are not blocked internally. We travelled up the Centre and down the WA coast two years ago and coming back across the Nullarbor was when I started to see an increase in temperatures. So what ever is causing the overheating is a progressive thing, like a gradually failing fan clutch. Last night I took the plunge and ordered a new fan clutch and drive belt, mainly because it’s widely reported that a bad clutch is a main cause of overheating and I won’t know if this is the cause of my problem until this is done. Fingers crossed 🤞.
Bala
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Re: Ford PX Ranger overheating when towing.

Post by Bala »

The fan clutch is a pretty cheap option to try.

I honestly think the radiator needs to come out to give it and the others a decent clean. I know a trucking company that cleans the find out yearly, as soon as summer comes temps rise due to lack of air flow.

On a hot day I can travel in 4th at 90 kph and only see temps move from around 90c on hills. On the same day if I try to run in 5th at 100kph or even 90kph I see quick temp rise.
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