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1998 ford escort zx2 vct solenoid

I have a 1998 Ford Escort ZX2, 2.0L DOHC. I recently had the check engine light come on with code that basically says my VCT solenoid is malfunctioning. It is not very easy to find information about this part, I see that it is expensive, and time comsuming to replace. I don’t really have the time or money, the car still runs with 120k.
What kind of consequences would I run into if I decided not to replace the part. The only thing I can find is that I would not pass emissions.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Variable Cam Timing.

Here’s a video on the subject.


I had no idea what I was talking about so I erased my comment with these words.

Any more info on this subject? My check engine light went on about 8 years ago with this same problem. I had it run through many diagnostics back then but the mechanics couldn’t find a solution. I have continued to drive my car since then with no change in performance, mileage, or reliability. Then I moved to a state that requires emissions inspections. Now my car won’t pass the inspection without the repair so I had the variable cam timing fixed. The check engine light is still on though. Since my car is so old and has about 120k miles (it still runs great), I’m trying to keep my investment to a minimum. What should I do next?

I don’t see what the video posted is supposed to tell me. My car doesn’t sound like that at all and starts just fine every time.

@drgnfly1900 - Did you have the error codes read again after the work was done? If so report the exact code(s) - format “P1234” If not, have the codes read again and then report them. Don’t assume that the pre-work and post-work codes are the same - even though they could be.

Fill in the blanks on the repair. Did you go someplace and say “please diagnose and fix” ? Or did you go and say “this is what’s wrong. Replace x part” ? If the former, what does the shop have to say that did the diagnosis?

There is a Ford TSB on the VCT system: TSB 03-15-14. These are generally not available publicly in full text. You can search the internet for a post of it, or a Ford dealer might get you a copy.