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Jan 24, 2024
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What engine do you have?
V8 engine
What year is your Sport Trac?
What Generation is your Sport Trac?
1st Gen Owner
Howdy Y'all!

My name is Amber & I'm new here, but not new to my Sport Trac.
I have been in love with the Sport Trac since 2002 when I first laid my eyes on one, but I got mine in 2013 after searching for the better part of 18 months for the exact one I wanted.
I have a 2007 Ford Explorer Sport Trac Limited, V8, 4.6 Liter 4x4.
It is everything I had ever wanted and I am still in love with her over 10 years later!
Although, I'm not sure yet if I am just this stubborn or a glutton for punishment, most likely both, but I have probably invested more into her than the 30K I paid for her back then.
I bought her with only 34K miles and will cross 180K this month, but come to find out she was towed behind an RV all over North America for the first part of her life, lots of salt and sand led to lots of undercarriage and suspension corrosion and damage.
It is an Early Model 2007 so I have been given the wrong parts more often than the right ones, because nearly nothing is interchangeable between early and late model that year.

I have a few issues that I could use some advice with.
1.) I have had to replace the exhaust manifold 6 times because something on the passenger side of the engine is causing it to run so hot that it keeps cracking.
- Has anyone else seen this issue or have any suggestions to correct it.
2.) This past spring I installed a leveling kit, 3” Front & 2 1/2” Rear by Street Dirt Track SDT & 2" with Hubcentric Wheel Spacers 5x4.5 5x114.3 and larger tires 275/65R18, as well as replaced the entire suspension... every single piece... but I ran into major problems when trying to get it aligned properly. I took it to 5 different shops and 4 of them refused to touch it or even offer suggestions, and the 5th gave it a full workup and a printout that showed exactly where she was and where she needed to be and told me that in order to get it properly aligned I would need to install extended upper control arms and lifted steering knuckles/spindles.
I have searched so many sites and called so many companies and I can't find the parts I need. In the meantime, I have had to continue driving it, so many of the new suspension parts are already worn out.
- Can anyone point me in the direction to get the parts I need? My only other option is to take her back down and I really really don't want to do that.
I have included pictures from the night I brought her home and 10 years and a lift later.

If there is anyone that can help I would be eternally grateful!
~Amber Renee


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A lot going on here...
The suspension you MUST install BTF upper arms, or you will never get it aligned. Even after that anything 2.5 or higher may never align properly.
The manifolds: Are you using fords replacement ? New gaskets and upgraded bolts?
Running "Hot" could be a clogged cat converter, bad fuel injectors, or other mechanical components. Even timing being off could do it.
If you’re replacing with aftermarket manifolds, that’s most likely your problem. Even the ford ones aren’t the best. They aren’t very flat after machining(on the exhaust port flange). One option is to buy a set of used manifolds and have a machine shop “deck” them. With the manifolds being used, they have already been heat cycled and won’t warp anymore. You can do this with new manifolds as well, but the amount they warp is always different. Willing to bet you had multiple exhaust manifold studs broken when you first had the job done.

But as Todd said, a cat that is clogged will increase exhaust temps drastically. One way you can check this is with an IR temp gun. Take the truck on a hard drive, wot a few times. Then stop and get under the truck and take a temp reading on each cat. If the pass side is much hotter than the driver side, then you know something is going on with the rh bank. Could be a clogged cat, could be old spark plugs, could be leaky injectors, could be a vacuum leak. Most of these you’ll be able to feel while driving, and should throw a cel. These cats are pretty big for the engine, and normally don’t fail without something else failing first.

for the front alignment, there are some adjustable upper ball joints you can have installed. The part number is floating around the forum here somewhere. Try a search for adjustable ball joint or Mazda adjustable.

Also, welcome to forum!
Welcome to the site. Sharp looking ST. Great color too.
WELCOME !!! Great knowledgeable folks here!! Nice looking ST !!!

Understand the luv for the Sport Trac !! Luv b-o-t-h of ours !!!
Thanks for the advice and the warm welcome!

I also have an OBDLink MX+ installed, so I do have access to a lot of the diagnostic information, but don't always know what. to look for.

For the heat and manifold issue, I have replaced the spark plugs and fuel injectors several times, but I think the last time was about 8K miles ago and before this last manifold crack. I have also tried to have the OEM Manifold crack welded and decked. It did seem to hold out longer than the others, but still only made it right at 3 years.
Have you looked to see if a set of aftermarket performance headers are available?
Welding cast is a VERY hard thing to do properly. Even then, it’s maybe a 50/50 chance.

With the Mx, you could look at cat temps. But I think this info is just calculated by the ECU.

There are no headers for this truck. Well, not drop in anyways. A certain Mustang shorty header fits, but with a bunch of cutting and welding. Which could cause the same issues down the road.
Have you looked to see if a set of aftermarket performance headers are available?

They don't make anything.... mustang shorty headers fit, BUT they need modifications.
I bet this truck has a clogging cat, misfire or bad timing component that the monitor has not picked up.