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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

I'm new here, just registered today because I was really impressed by your website. I would love to tell you guys my story and see if you can help me out.

My fiance and I bought a car (86 as the title says) and I'm trying to get it all ready before I ship in March. The car is actually in really good condition but I've been putting some major work into it, been pretty proud of myself. I'm 19 and I've never touched a car before in my life and yet I've replaced the coolant, switched out all the bulbs in the dashboard (which was a pain in the ass!) changed the oil/oil filter, air filter and today I changed the fuel filter.

I have a few questions.

1) The car hesitates when its accelerating, the book I got with the car (it seems ancient) says there are a few causes. "Dirty carburetor or fuel filter, improper accelerator pump setting, ignition timing or fouled spark plugs.

2) The temperature gauge in the dash doesn't work and I get the feeling the car is overheating. It's not too bad but the car generally stays hot and the engine takes about 4 or 5 hours to cool down enough to where I can touch it. I don't think that is normal, but as I said I don't have much knowledge. I've been going into Auto zone very frequently and they have been very knowledgeable and helpful.

So here is what I have gathered.

1) I changed the fuel filter which is the only thing I know how to do. I think I know where the spark plugs are (its a circular metal piece with 6 wires in it that lead to the engine and I can pop them off) but I know nothing of spark plugs. I have no idea what the accelerator pump is or how to set it and also where the carburetor or even how I can clean it. I would really appreciate you guys to enlighten me in those areas. I can post pictures of my engine so you guys could show me or link me something. I have searched your website as well as Google and its really hard to find something relating to a ford Taurus, especially a year even close to my make.

2) I talked to the guys at Auto Zone and searched online and I have a few questions. I have found two items that might fix the temperature gauge, either replacing the thermostat (which I know where it is!) or the Coolant Temperature gauge, which I have no idea about. The guys at Auto Zone said it could either be the thermostat or the computer receiver in the dashboard itself.

Any information would be amazing and greatly appreciated. Thank you guys, you have a great website!

Cameron
 

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What book does it have? Doesn't sound right. You might want to get a Taurus manual from the parts store.

1. You might want replace the wires and spark plugs, if they are too old they will cause problems. You just need a 5/8 deep socket I believe. Some socket sets even label it as a sparkplug socket. Just remove and replace. Add anti seize to the threads. The car does not have a carburetor. I don't even think it has an accelerator pump.

2) the Thermostat or the sensor is a possibility. The sensor should be near the thermostat.
 

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Try the non-invasive stuff before the spark plugs. There's nothing quite like a broken-off spark plug in your engine to ruin your day. I would try these last if they seem to be stuck at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys. I'm not a fan of the manual that came with the car, its "Chilton Repair Manual - Taurus/Sable Continental 1986-89." The guy I bought the car from threw it in, some information has been helpful, some seems a little off.

I'm waiting for my paycheck to open up the thermostat housing and maybe I will replace the wires.

Also, today the brake fluid started leaking to the point where I had no brake fluid so the car is out of commission for a few days, I need to replace the hoses since they are old and cracked all over.
 

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Kinda surprised a Taurus manual is talking about carbs, since a Taurus doesn't have one.

My 'new' Taurus (1993) sluggish off the line. Fuel filter was packed solid.That made a huge difference.I did routine stuff(plugs and wires,cap/rotor Air filter and some vacuum lines) and it was a huge difference.
 

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how hard is changing the fuel filter? Mine can be sluggish sometimes. but then again the car is on its way out. Really rough shape.
 

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Be very very careful if you end up replacing the thermostat. The lower bolt is well known for snapping off in the lower intake manifold. Liberally apply repeated applications of penetrating fluid to decrease the risk of having this happen. Replace the thermostat with a Motorcraft one as the shape of the opening for the thermostat is a bit oblong. Aftermarket make round thermostats which doesn't quite do the right job. Have a thread repair job about an 87 I just picked up on TaurusOwners.com if you want to check it out.

If you look down in the engine bay, on the driver's side of the engine bay...look for the two hoses that go into the lower intake manifold (probably hidden under the air intake tubing. You'll see one that has a small wire coming off...that is your coolant temperature sensor.

Chiltons has a great manual, but it's the 86-95 version for the Taurus...which I bet is the updated version to what you have. I would look into seeing if you can find a copy of it used on Amazon or something.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
how hard is changing the fuel filter? Mine can be sluggish sometimes. but then again the car is on its way out. Really rough shape.

It was easy, found near the rear by the gas tank. Just take off the two clips from each side of the filter, make sure you notice which way the flow arrow points and take the hoses off. Some gas will come out so have a rag around and no smoking!

Picked up a fuel filter at autozone for like 7 dollars.

Bull Geek - I'll be sure to be careful when dealing with the thermostat and I'll check out that new chilton.
 
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