91-94X Battery Cables | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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91-94X Battery Cables


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March 4, 2007
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City, State
anaheim hills,california
Year, Model & Trim Level
95 ranger 4x4/ 91 X 4x4
...Save yourself some head aches and do not attempt to put ends on cables, but instead, replace the whole cable...The cables commonly corrode inside the sheathing....

...Click, click, click...

..This is a good read if you think it may be the starter or need to figure out what it might be..It gets really interesting on page 2..;)
Starter Hell

...(This is good for all vehicles)..If you are hearing this when you try to start your vehicle, the following info may be of some help..

...It could be your starter or fender relay. (Common cause of click, click, click/ see pics below)

...Batteries and cables are often overlooked...

...First and foremost, if the battery does not have 12.1 volts anytime before starting, it will effect the starter and a no start condition may/will occur. If the battery drops down into the upper 10 volt or lower during cranking, your battery cranking power is shot and you need a new battery...Starter warranties and install information usually have this info included with them..

...You can also test voltage at your starter for 12.1 volts while someone turns the key to the start position and try to start, before you get the new cables...

...I too fell victim to this same problem with a new battery, fender relay, new cables and starter, click click click...;)
'95 xl reg cab 4x4 5 speed 2.3l

...I had to just verify with napaonline.com since the 91 and 94 X are similar but different..;)

Positive cable Item#: CBL717993

...Negative cable Item#: CBL717991

Note: There is a problem on the wording of the negative cable on that link (it says positive)...Those are the exact items for my 91 and they show for the 94 also, so it's good info..After searching for mine, those were the BEST cables I have found to date..:biggthump

..Negative Cable Routing...
...This is where it comes down from the negative post to the frame...It then goes to the motor above the starter..;)

..This picture shows where the negative cable ends and mounts to the block on the passenger side...

...Positive Cable routing...

...I have received several pm's on how to swap the positive cable so I hope this information will help those swapping in new cables...I needed to get this cable on before I swap in the new optima and Ballistic battery box...:hammer:

...Before everyone ask, the item with the green knob is a battery quick disconnect ($3) which comes in handy while working on the vehicle, in case of a roll over, vehicle storage, and makes clearing the computer memory a breeze...;)...Caution should be used when installing one of these...Note the close proximity to the starter fender relay...

...The new cable right out of the box...

...Cable routing...

...This shows the routing of all the positive cables from the positive post...

...The positive cable then runs along the frame rail...(shown here above the negative cable...)

..This picture shows where the cable comes down below the passenger side frame rail and makes the turn to the drivers side toward the starter...

...There are 2 cable holders for the positive cable...One is located by where the negative cable terminates at the block and the second one is located at the bottom of the tranny bellhousing by the starter..These are easily pried open and then pinched closed with a pair of channel locks..

...Pried open and cable shown pulled out...

..This picture shows the hard plastic rock/heat shield found on the positive cable, (looking from the front drivers side back)..This is a very important item which protects the cable not only from rocks and the elements but also keeps the cable from being cooked by the exhaust and should not be disguarded..

...This picture shows the rock/heat guard re-installed looking from the transmission forward...

...I did cut the cables to inspect them and there wasn't as much corrosion as expected...You will probably find more corrosion on your cables though..

...Starter Fender Relay..

..This is the original 3 post starter fender relay...

...For those who purchase a new fender relay just to get home and find that they gave you a 4 post relay, no worry...It is common for stores to send you home with either a 3 or 4 post relay...This is a comparison of the two...If you do come home with a 4 post relay, you just don't use the post marked "I"...

...This pic shows the starter relay finished with all wires connected...

...A close up pic of the fender relay all wired up...The left side wire is coming from the battery while the right side wire is going to the starter...The ignition wire is on top..

...Starter connections...

...I just replaced the starter with a high torque starter on the X and it came with a pigtail to replace the pin connection that the old starter had and the new starter does not have...This is not a great picture but it shows the difference of the two positive cables and their connections for the starter..Minus the heat shrink of course...

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For those who may not know -

There was a problem with early '90s Explorers (and I assume Rangers) battery cables. The negative cable corroded internally fairly quickly, causing the obvious "won't run" problem.

I would imagine they have all been replaced or junked by now - but if you are having electrical issues, it would be a good idea to check your battery cable.

...Save yourself some head aches and do not attempt to put ends on cables, but instead, replace the whole cable...The cables commonly corrode inside the sheathing....;


You routed this with the Inner fender off?
Was that ground cable in teh harness shown just above it or is it separate, as shown?
I haven't gone crazy but when I slide under to do an oil change I glance up and look around for where the heck the two Ring lugs are attached to the frame. This one picture helps . from there I can follow it to the next location.

...The pic above is my X...It has no inner fenders and it has a body lift...The added coil hoop is also seen on the left side so disregard it..

....If you were to lower the Thermostatic Control valve down 3" to your stock height, it would be covering the mounting location of the negative cable...

...The negative cable is mounted on the outside of the frame, on the bottom of that picture...

Yes I see the Cable mounted on the frame.. what I was asking is, did you pull it out of the Sheathing or is it not in it? I know the Positive Cable is buried in a sheathing and Clamped in many places to the Engine as it makes it's way to teh Starter. I noticed the 3" body lift so I figured the Thermo control would be right at the cable mounting.
THANKS, I'll have to look closer next time I'm floating around under the car.

...That is how the new cable comes already, and that is the new cable installed..;)

OK, If the Original disappears into some Sheathing ( i think it does) I will cut it and just add this. That's how I did the Positive when I made my own Cable.

...On the negative cable, it is designed as shown...That is the primary chassis ground and main ground for the vehicle....As it continues over and mounts to the motor, it grounds the motor and it's related electronics...

...Personally, buying new Primary (Pos and Neg) cables is the only way to go....A bad connection on either one will fry all your electronics and/or, lead to a fire...:eek:

Gotta be honest I'm not going to spend that much on cables. I'd just buy standard ones that are long enough. Run a new bonding jumper to the frame, that crimp point is a future failure point from corrosion. Splice into the two going to the plug. I'd use Nolox in the terminal connectors and then heat shrink or tape. I'm using the Schucks Permatex spray on my terminals, digging that stuff so far.

Strange that the Plug has two +12V Wires going to it.. why not just one for both connections?

i bought the positive and negative cables shown above last month. My positive cable that NAPA sent me doesnt look like the one pictured, but the ID number and price are all the same.

...More importantly, does it look like the one already on your X and can you post a pic of it..???

...There have been several members here who have gotten the correct Pos cable from those links...If you click on the link and it shows different than what you received, I would contact NAPA...

..I have received incorrect parts in the correctly marked box before...Let us know how it turns out...

That doesn't look right at all! @jij

BTW: I'm going to be doing this soon..... fun fun! Mine are NASTY. I just noticed the wires are BLUE from corrosion at the starter.... I'm surprised I have no electrical issues yet!

So when are you going to do a step by step for installing these T-bars? LOL

i dropped it off at NAPA today, and they said they would get me another positive cable by tomorrow.

...Did they take it back because it is different than what they show or was it a wrong part in the right box??

they took it back so I guess it was the wrong part in the right box. I'll know more tomorrow

...Any update on this???..:popcorn:

Just picked up the new cable, and its the correct one. Time for installation.:D

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Im going to do this soon. Im going to see if i can find them cheaper somewhere first. Thanks Tbars!