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2002 escape, help trouble shooting.

Tiha

Red Skull Member
Joined
May 20, 2020
Member Number
711
Messages
921
Loc
Central Iowa
Need some out of the box thinking here.
2002 ford escape, 3.0. chassis has 130K, engine is unknown miles, was a used engine. So probably lots of miles. But plugs have less than 5k on them

Been running great. Then bam, check engine light. Misfire on #4 and #6. Barely idles.

Installed new coil and plug on #4 only, because I am already thinking this isn't a coil or plug problem.

Clear codes, restart expecting 4 should go away if that was the problem correct?

Nope, now have misfire codes #4, #5, and #6.

Pull all 3 coils and plugs to inspect. Plugs look great, dry and clean. Look the same. They smell funny though. Not sure what to liken it to. I know that is a clue, but not sure what it is telling me yet.

Run compression check. All 3 seem great and close.

Re install, check fuel pressure, right at 65 psi. Spec is 55-65

Checked fuel trims, all relatively low. Not indicating vac leak, or over fueling. Switching like normal.

Now an then getting a smell like running rich but no noticeable smoke.

Sprayed intake down with starting fluid and didn't seem to find any vac leaks, no noticeable change at all and place I sprayed.

Now codes are P0300, p0303, p0304, p0305, p0306

Seems like my misfires are jumping around, popping up in different orders each time I reset and check.

Pulled the air filter, it was clean.

Pulled the plug on the MAF while idling. It seemed to clear up and run better but not fixed. Of course that threw an IAT and MAF code.
Swapped MAF with another I had laying there. No change in running, MAF and IAT code went away.

Thought about plugged CAT but the thing revs fine. You can drive it like it is, but it is sluggish off the line and low power, but obviously it is missing. But that shouldn't explain why my rear bank is now randomly missing.

Blocked the EGR to eliminate that.

Trying to remember if there was anything else I checked. But I am at a loss moving forward where to start next.

Thought maybe bad gas, but it had been running on that tank for a week, then my son put another 10 gallon in when it started acting up. By now it should have changed some.

This thing doesn't knock, or rattle or make any funny noises like a timing chain issue. Never back fires.

Doesn't use any coolant.

I obviously need to check voltages from PCM, maybe that is failing? I see 2005 had a Coil driver issue in the PCM.

Need to check injectors,

Starting to wonder about the crank sensor, ect, or cam sensor, but no codes at all pointing to any of those things.

Even wondering about an alternator issue. Hopefully that would show up during voltage test on coils? but doesn't change when changing electrical loads like turning AC and blower, headlights on.

I guess I am leaning towards a PCM/Harness issue? Searching google this just doesn't seem like a common problem on these.

Any random thoughts?

I never get the easy ones. why can't I ever open the hood and find a loose battery terminal, or hose that fell off.

Thanks,
 
I'll give the abbreviated version of where I am at.

Found corrosion on pins on ECM. Cleaned. Ran again no codes. No more misfire codes. Nothing. But still missing.

Eventually found a broken valve spring on one of the exhaust valves of the #6 cylinder. repeatedly running a compression test showed different readings every run. Well except 0, that number popped up more than once.

Not sure if it can be changed on the vehicle yet or not. This is a duratec, not an ohv vulcan. If I have to pull the cam that means stripping the front of the motor to pull the timing chains. I could not find one other reference on the internet anywhere of a broken valve spring on this series engine.

I am going to order parts, then try to wiggle the cam out of the way and see if I can change it with the head on the car.
If not, then the head comes off probably other option would be pulling the radiator and cooling fans. Might be able to get to it that way.
 
So my parts showed up today.

Old spring came out easy enough.

I marked the chains and loosened the cam cap. Got the followers out.

I pryed against the camshaft to remove and install the spring retainers, yeah I know you're gonna say never pry on the camshaft, well bite me lol it is o

By the grace of God I got the spring and retainers in.

Quick compression check.

Matches what I got on 4&5.

It purrs like a kitten. All is well.

Can't believe nobody else on the internet has posted this problem and I wonder if people or shops just give up and say you need a new engine or what.

So it wasn't a difficult job, for that I am grateful but just weird and apparently not common.

The best take away from all this is the internet doesn't have all the answers.
You have to figure things out for yourself
 
Probably no posts about because it's uncommon. I work on a ton of those things and I've never seen one do that. With the age/value of them now, if one has a need for any kind of head work it likely gets dumped and they buy something else.
 
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I figured out a long time ago to never buy, work on, or even offer to look at an escape.

I would normally agree with that. But I have to admit They are cheap to buy, cheap to fix. Cheap to own. Great for kids. All wheel drive. Pretty dependable. Great for around town.

My son had a couple of them. He had an 06 that was trouble. Right after the trans went out a week after he bought it the engine spun a rod bearing. Which was apparently common.

We replaced the crankshaft with the engine still in the vehicle. Not one of the best decisions I have ever made but we got it done.
 
I would normally agree with that. But I have to admit They are cheap to buy, cheap to fix. Cheap to own. Great for kids. All wheel drive. Pretty dependable. Great for around town.

My son had a couple of them. He had an 06 that was trouble. Right after the trans went out a week after he bought it the engine spun a rod bearing. Which was apparently common.

We replaced the crankshaft with the engine still in the vehicle. Not one of the best decisions I have ever made but we got it done.

The 2nd gen with the 2.5 duratec are solid runners, but I'm prejudice against any transverse V6.

I'll agree they're cheap to buy, fix, but when you work on it every week they're not cheap to own. Sub par interior quality IMHO.

It's what you give a 16 y/o girl because it's going to get fucked up in short order.
 
It's what you give a 16 y/o girl because it's going to get fucked up in short order.

Yeah well boys who know better find ways to tear them up too. LOL

my son who is driving it now, he is 18 now and he was like, I am so sorry I didn't mean to break it again. He felt bad. Wasn't even his fault. At least has hasn't tried to drive over a couch like the last one did.

This fix cost me $8. but it was a weird one finding it.
 
What code read device and app are you using if I may ask ? - thansk
 
I actually have 2.

This one is actually really good and worth the money. Since the chinese don't have morals it will do more than a lot of more expensive scanners, like reset air bag lights, tpms. Plus they are always updating.
https://www.amazon.com/LAUNCH-Code-Reader-Transmission-Touchscreen/dp/B07RLF8FBC?tag=91812054244-20

Then I also have torque pro phone app with a blue tooth dongle. Fordserv I think was another really good app but crappy interface.

Then at work we have all kinds from the cheap Advance auto readers to the high dollar OTC. That launch system is faster and just as accurate without buying the separate licenses.
 
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