So here's my story -
I have a 02 OHV
SE Taurus that I have always taken care of... however recently I had to lend the car to a friend who returned it after about a month (I was away on holiday) and he said that he had some problems with the coolant going missing and decided to pour water, some Prestone yellow coolant etc... and kept driving!!
Long story short, when I took it back, the coolant tank had a hairline crack that was slowly dripping coolant. I ordered a new doorman one immediately since that's what they had on short notice and replaced it. Drained the radiator and put new golden Zerex 05.
Now here are the issues I had prior to lending it and may have been increased due to a bit of negligence -
1) Heat in the dead of winter was very low to the level of non-existant (or barely lukewarm)
2) Each time I turn on the heating, I can smell (very strong) coolant which goes away (or almost goes away) once the blower runs for a bit... the windows get all foggy leading me to drive with them down in -28C
3) I didn't drive it much in the winter and now have decided to tackle the issues
4) The air-conditioning is super cold and is working fantastic
5) Now (In the summer) the heating is blowing hot (but this had happened a year back too where summer the heating was working perfect, and when winter came, I just kept at the same temps as the weather
6) In Canada we have bitter cold and while I'm not expecting magic, the coolant smell with the poor heating has me confused.
7) The engine (I think) is running slightly hotter (I remember the needle always sitting at 1/3 from the bottom, and now it sits at 1/2) but I'm not sure if that is the normal since I've driven my work car for a bit of the time and may have forgotten!
Is it the heater core or the water pump or the lines or the timing cover gasket or something else??
Can someone help?