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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently bought a 91 Taurus with the 3.8 as my "winter beater" and "going to work" car. It sounded nice and I was impressed that it only had 71K miles on it.

Within two days the water pump went kapoot and we've now repaired that. The next day, the flasher unit went out and after spending an hour trying to find it and $35.00 to replace it, there's another problem. The CV joint boot has a rip in it and I need to figure out whether to get the boot replaced (if the joint is still good) or to just replace the stupid joint and be done with it. I know an old car is going to have problems, but this is ridiculous.

A mechanic friend of mine just told me that the 3.8's are notorious for having the head gasket go out between 80-100K. I also read somewhere on the 'net that the transmissions are prone to failure, too!!!!!!! Geeesh!!!!!!!! What's up with these cars?

I'd like to know more about the tranny failures, if someone can provide some info. I might be tempted to keep this car around if I can be done with major stuff after fixing the CV issue. If all I can look forward to, though, is head gasket failure and later, tranny failure, I think this thing is gonna get junked.

Any and all input appreciated.

Thanks,

Rachelle
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Originally posted by FatTortoise@Apr 29 2004, 10:02 AM
The Taurus will break down if you dont take care of it.. It is not as sturdy to no-care as a Honda Civic is..

IF you take care of it, it will take care of you
As I mentioned, I just bought this car and do not know how well it has, or has not, been taken care of.

I was looking for general info about common issues with the Taurus.

A Civic? Nooooooooooooooooooo.

I take excellent care of my cars. I did not intend to offend with the "winter beater" comment.
 

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Originally posted by msellehcar@Apr 29 2004, 09:17 AM
The CV joint boot has a rip in it and I need to figure out whether to get the boot replaced (if the joint is still good) or to just replace the stupid joint and be done with it.  I know an old car is going to have problems, but this is ridiculous.
I would just go ahead and replace the entire half-shaft. I believe a rebuilt one only runs about $60 at Autozone and I don't think it's too hard to replace. Good luck with it


Edit: Welcome to the club!
 

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just from my experience the taurus does present somee repair problems because some of them cost more to fix than the trade-in or retail value of the car. i take care of ours but since november have replaced tranny, water pump, hoses, thermostat, tires and wiper motor. now the tranny is going out again and rear strut springs are broken. add to that the fact that yours has a 3.8 which is notorious for blowing head gaskets. some are worse than others and i hope i am just having bad luck but i am getting rid of mine somehow. anybody want it?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Originally posted by rancher@May 2 2004, 10:50 AM
just from my experience the taurus does present somee repair problems because some of them cost more to fix than the trade-in or retail value of the car. i take care of ours but since november have replaced tranny, water pump, hoses, thermostat, tires and wiper motor. now the tranny is going out again and rear strut springs are broken. add to that the fact that yours has a 3.8 which is notorious for blowing head gaskets. some are worse than others and i hope i am just having bad luck but i am getting rid of mine somehow. anybody want it?
I'm trying to decide what to do at this point. We replaced the half shaft, water pump and turn signal assembly so far. The tie rod is a little loose and will need attention at some point and then an alignment. The sway bar is broken, don't know if I'll deal with that anytime soon. Then, it would seem, I have head gasket problems to look forward to and then transmission! Yikes! All this on a car that cost $1300!

It only has 71K on it, which was a big draw for me, but I've been warned that between 80-100K the head gasket is going to go....

Any other input on when gasket and transmission issues came up in terms of at what mileage?
 

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Originally posted by msellehcar@May 2 2004, 12:47 PM

I'm trying to decide what to do at this point. We replaced the half shaft, water pump and turn signal assembly so far. The tie rod is a little loose and will need attention at some point and then an alignment. The sway bar is broken, don't know if I'll deal with that anytime soon. Then, it would seem, I have head gasket problems to look forward to and then transmission! Yikes! All this on a car that cost $1300!

It only has 71K on it, which was a big draw for me, but I've been warned that between 80-100K the head gasket is going to go....

Any other input on when gasket and transmission issues came up in terms of at what mileage?
I think a tear in the boot can just be one of those things, hit something odd in the road and the rubber will tear.

Not sure there's much you can do about the head gasket and transmission. About the only thing to do with the transmission would be to change the fluid and hope for the best.

13 year old cars are going to have a few problems. When the tranny or head gasket goes, dump it and look around some more.
 
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Unless if the transmission or head gaskets have been replaced, I would cash out now. If you are very competent in repairing cars (head gasket is a weekend job) then it may be in your best interests to keep it.

Head gaskets and transmission are problem areas of this car and a failure is still possible no matter how much tlc you give it. If you look at the 3.8l engine and how close the coolant passages are to the cylinders, you will be amazed. You have a 91 which is the first year ford went electronic in the transmissions - aka the worst year. Go to this page and scroll down: http://members.aol.com/MKBradley/ take a lookie at the charts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Originally posted by XLSuruaT@May 2 2004, 06:49 PM
Unless if the transmission or head gaskets have been replaced, I would cash out now.  If you are very competent in repairing cars (head gasket is a weekend job) then it may be in your best interests to keep it.

Head gaskets and transmission are problem areas of this car and a failure is still possible no matter how much tlc you give it.  If you look at the 3.8l engine and how close the coolant passages are to the cylinders, you will be amazed.  You have a 91 which is the first year ford went electronic in the transmissions - aka the worst year.  Go to this page and scroll down: http://members.aol.com/MKBradley/ take a lookie at the charts.
Whoa.. that link more or less made up my mind. My neighbor has a Buick Lesabre for sale, also older, but I think I'm selling this Taurus asap and trying my luck with the Buick. Thank you very much for that post, it might have saved me quite a few bucks...?!
 

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I'm a Ford freak but I will admit that '91 Was a bad year for the Taurus, and the 3.8 was trash. A '91 with a 3.8 is going to be total hell. However if you like the Taurus, look for another year and one prefebly with a 3.0 V-6 (The Vulcan). There indistructable in my opinion. We've had many Taurus's in the family and none of them have let us done. My uncle was the only one to play with the 3.8 tho, but he swore by the 3.8 and had his own way of making things work and last for a while....
 

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<------------------

I must be the only one who hasn't had any real problems with this car. Sure I had to buy new tires, front struts, tune-up, etc, but who won't? I admit I did feel my tranny starting to slip, but I heard of this stuff called Lucas Transmission Stop Leak (I believe that's what it's called). I added this to my tranny fluid, and within a couple of hundred miles, it felt brand new! All-in-all, I've had good luck with this car!
 
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