I have a 2001 Taurus, with the 3.0 flex fuel engine. Lately I have noticed that there is a reddish-brown dust all over the front of the engine where the pulleys and belt are. I can hear a scraping sound when the engine is running and I am standing outside the vehicle. I was thinking this might be the A/C
compressor clutch on its way out, and maybe its slipping and grinding which might be creating all the dust. The A/C
does not blow as cold as it should and the high side hoses don't feel as cold as they should. The compressor engages and keeps spinning, so I don't think that there is a low level of freon. But I was thinking a bad A/C
clutch would explain the scraping noise, the warmer than normal A/C
and the brown dust. The dust is all over the alternator and all of the pulleys, and I don't think its brake dust..
The pictures don't show it very good but the first pic (with the power steering pulley) it is most evident.