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Hey guys,

I have a 2003 Taurus SES with the Vulcan. Got it last summer, and I want to get it up to snuff this year.

I picked this one to buy because it had basically a perfect body, damage-free inside and out, and was right around the 100K mark. This dealer that I bought it from, I was able to look online at their stock at forty different locations, and this was the best one. :)

Downside is its got the Vulcan, so its slow-ish. And wallowy. Other than that, its great. It had 106K when I bought it, its up to 112,000 now.

So here's my plan for this year.

I'm gonna be making changes to it in $50 to $100 increments. Probably spend something on improving it any month.

Can you guys help me prioritize??? Keep in mind I'm doing probably one thing a month. If something's expensive these will be spaced a couple months apart.

Here's what I'm thinking.

1. Oil change soon. I've gotta read up on whether to use synthetic or regular.

2. Change the antifreeze. One time last summer it bubbled over through the cap of the overflow tank and I added maybe half a gallon of water to it, so, I want to get it back to a good 50/50 mix.

3. Get the suspension checked out. I had it looked at when I bought the car and nothing was in need of attention, so next time I have it in I'm going to get the update on it.

4. Want to take care of the weak spots proactively. So I'm thinking, Moog Springs on all four corners, any thoughts? I've heard about the spring problem in these cars and I have no idea if mine are original.

5. Rear Spoiler. Saw the thread about getting one painted to match, liking that idea.

6. Leak test and recharge the A/C. It blows sort of cold, but not that cold.

7. Hot air intake maybe? Saw it on the thread about performance mods. Is it worth the time? Remove the intake silencer as well...

8. Muffler & exhaust... get the Bull sounding good. I don't want it "loud" but I don't think it sounds real good now, there's nothing exciting about it... just a better tone is what I'm looking for.

9. Trans cooler. Had to do it on my last Ford too. Well, that one went through a couple transmissions, then I learned I needed this, and the last transmission lasted a good long time.

10. Suspension Mods which I'm going to post about in that sub-forum because I have questions.


So would anyone have some info on cost on these... suggest priorities for me?

Thanks. This is a great forum from what I've read so far...
 

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First things: Oil change and coolant flush / change. Use a Motorcraft filter. They are cheap at Walmart and great quality. Oil type is your choice. Look at the coolant degas tank for cracks / leaks. Coolant should never "boil over". If it does, you need to find the problem and fix it ASAP.

Second things: Tranny cooler, and a tranny fluid and filter change. Easy to do at home (follow instructions here in the Wiki), but a bit messy.

Third: Suspension & brakes. Replace any worn parts. Also check brakes and change brake fluid.

Fourth: Change plugs and plug wires if they are original. Use Motorcraft parts.

Last: Cosmetic mods. Get it running safe and reliably first, then do the other stuff.
 

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You might wanna look into camshaft synchronizer replacement as part of preventative maintenance as they fail from 80,000 miles and up.

For the oil don't use 5w-20, since Vulcan was never designed for it. Use at least 5w-30. And since you don't mind spending little bit of money, I'd go with synthetic.
 

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Thanks... all of this sounds good. I didn't know about the synchonizer.

So Ford really threw us for one by printing "5W-20" on the cap huh... that's crazy.
5w-20 was put on the cap in 2001, as I have owners guide from 2000 and i states 5w-30. It was done, so Ford could comply with CAFE and not because Vulcan was redesigned.
 

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Spring breakage doesnt happen to everyone. It is more common in the rust belt, but even then doesnt happen to everyone. I had a rear spring break this past summer on my 05. Obvious rust problem upon inspection. No big deal, as the struts were getting worn out anyway. Just threw in a pair of quick struts the next morning and was back on the road. Springs on the wifes 04 still look non rusted. Go figure.
 
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