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Discussion Starter #21
Thanks for the update and sorry to hear about the accident. Fortunately, no one was hurt. Car goes in on Tuesday for evaluation. Shame, nice car and I like it a lot, but the water pump issue has me seriously reconsidering my ownership of this vehicle. I’ve only had the Taurus a short time but never would have considered the purchase if I was aware of this potential problem beforehand. I wonder just what the actual percentage of failure is compared to unaffected engines. Thanks again for the suggestions, I’ll update once I get more info.
Continuing on... I got all the damage from the ladder incident repaired and got my car back yesterday.

Last night I pulled all the spark plugs, pressurized the cooling system and inspected inside each cylinder with a snake camera, making sure that each piston was at BDC during its cylinder inspection. There are no leaks into any cylinder (which I already assumed because I'm not seeing any white smoke from the exhaust, but I wanted to be completely sure).

Following Peter_Duncan's suggestion, I thoroughly inspected everywhere that coolant could possibly drip, spray, run or be blown onto for signs of a leak, and found none.

This morning I pulled several parts off of my engine to get a better view of things in order to re-inspect for any signs of external leaks. I did this inspection with the engine completely cold (it had not been started in more than 24 hours and it's currently around 55 degrees in my garage). When I put my head down into the area normally occupied by the air cleaner outlet pipe and air filter box (so that my face was near the driver-side edge of the radiator), I immediately, distinctly and consistently smell coolant. There are no signs of any leaks from either radiator hose. I again thoroughly inspected the radiator with a snake camera and find no signs of any leak. As a side note, I did find that the radiator had previously been replaced, which is odd for a car with such low mileage. The car had a clean CarFax when I bought it, and there are no signs of any previous wreck. I think that this evening or some time tomorrow I will pull the radiator out to get a better look at it. I'll spray it with soapy water, pressurize it and look for bubbles. I'll report back once I know more.

I'm curious to know what the dealership finds on your car.
 

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Continuing on... I got all the damage from the ladder incident repaired and got my car back yesterday.

Last night I pulled all the spark plugs, pressurized the cooling system and inspected inside each cylinder with a snake camera, making sure that each piston was at BDC during its cylinder inspection. There are no leaks into any cylinder (which I already assumed because I'm not seeing any white smoke from the exhaust, but I wanted to be completely sure).

Following Peter_Duncan's suggestion, I thoroughly inspected everywhere that coolant could possibly drip, spray, run or be blown onto for signs of a leak, and found none.

This morning I pulled several parts off of my engine to get a better view of things in order to re-inspect for any signs of external leaks. I did this inspection with the engine completely cold (it had not been started in more than 24 hours and it's currently around 55 degrees in my garage). When I put my head down into the area normally occupied by the air cleaner outlet pipe and air filter box (so that my face was near the driver-side edge of the radiator), I immediately, distinctly and consistently smell coolant. There are no signs of any leaks from either radiator hose. I again thoroughly inspected the radiator with a snake camera and find no signs of any leak. As a side note, I did find that the radiator had previously been replaced, which is odd for a car with such low mileage. The car had a clean CarFax when I bought it, and there are no signs of any previous wreck. I think that this evening or some time tomorrow I will pull the radiator out to get a better look at it. I'll spray it with soapy water, pressurize it and look for bubbles. I'll report back once I know more.

I'm curious to know what the dealership finds on your car.
Reschedule appointment. Goes in on Monday and getting a coolant flush and fill as well. Coolant passes those squeeze bulb protection tests but fails on multimeter test. Way outside of range (check YouTube for this procedure) which can indicate particulate matter of sort in the coolant. The coolant odor is intermittent and I don’t see any evidence that would indicate that this is serious. But, where’s it coming from? Vehicle is 7 years old and despite low mileage, I think it’s prudent to replace with fresh coolant at this point. I have all the service records from previous owner, hardcopy and via Carfax car care app and there’s no coolant work, only oil changes and other routine maintenance. Hopefully, nothing is wrong here, but I’ll know more next week. Post again soon...
 

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Discussion Starter #24
^+1 on the coolant swap especially if it's 7yrs.old regardless of the mileage!
There's a very popular Ford technician on YouTube who recommends not following Ford's maintenance schedules for fluids; he recommends changing fluids much sooner than Ford says to. According to him, Ford knows their fluid intervals are too long and they do this intentionally to drive repair business into their service centers.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Reschedule appointment. Goes in on Monday and getting a coolant flush and fill as well. Coolant passes those squeeze bulb protection tests but fails on multimeter test. Way outside of range (check YouTube for this procedure) which can indicate particulate matter of sort in the coolant. The coolant odor is intermittent and I don’t see any evidence that would indicate that this is serious. But, where’s it coming from? Vehicle is 7 years old and despite low mileage, I think it’s prudent to replace with fresh coolant at this point. I have all the service records from previous owner, hardcopy and via Carfax car care app and there’s no coolant work, only oil changes and other routine maintenance. Hopefully, nothing is wrong here, but I’ll know more next week. Post again soon...
Thanks for this! I had completely forgotten about the multimeter test! My coolant passes both the hydration (glycol ratio) and multimeter tests. Different technicians state different threshold voltages for what is acceptible on the multimeter test; however, my reading is well below all of the various recommendations. With my engine at full operating temperature I consistently read 0.051v with occasional (infrequent) fluctuations of ∓ 0.003v over a period of 30 minutes of idling. This evening I will finally have time to pull the radiator for closer inspection and leak test. Thereafter I'll report back.
 

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Dealer found nothing. No surprise there. I’m not sure what the lackey in the Quick Lane department knew what to look for anyway. I have no faith in dealerships at all. None. I don’t trust them and I never will. Everyone I’ve been to in my 55 years of car ownership turned out to be a disappointment. That being said, I had a coolant change and promptly upon arrival back home did the not-so-scientific multimeter test. Reads .02, before it was .17. Someone did something right! So all better there. One bit of encouraging news was the response I got back from the service department manager after I asked about the frequency of water pump failures. “We start seeing them at around 40,000 miles and up from there”. Read that with a healthy dose of sarcasm. This jackass was almost proud of the way he stated that. He didn’t even attempt to reassure me at all. They must be making a fortune off of this. Then again, why would they care anyway? The more the merrier! Glad that experience is over. At least I have new coolant racing through that ever slowly disintegrating pump and the slight aroma of fresh coolant to boot! Yea!
 

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Discussion Starter #28 (Edited)
Dealer found nothing. No surprise there. I’m not sure what the lackey in the Quick Lane department knew what to look for anyway. I have no faith in dealerships at all. None. I don’t trust them and I never will. Everyone I’ve been to in my 55 years of car ownership turned out to be a disappointment. That being said, I had a coolant change and promptly upon arrival back home did the not-so-scientific multimeter test. Reads .02, before it was .17. Someone did something right! So all better there. One bit of encouraging news was the response I got back from the service department manager after I asked about the frequency of water pump failures. “We start seeing them at around 40,000 miles and up from there”. Read that with a healthy dose of sarcasm. This jackass was almost proud of the way he stated that. He didn’t even attempt to reassure me at all. They must be making a fortune off of this. Then again, why would they care anyway? The more the merrier! Glad that experience is over. At least I have new coolant racing through that ever slowly disintegrating pump and the slight aroma of fresh coolant to boot! Yea!
I also don't trust dealers (not to mention that I just don't like them because they charge 4x more for the same parts/equipment I can get elsewhere). Did the Service Manager happen to give you an idea of how often a water pump failure results in catastrophic engine destruction (i.e., how many of the pump failures are due to gaskets vs. shaft seals)? The Service Advisors in my area don't seem to want to get into specifics with me on this question (they pretend that the don't know, and claim they don't have any information in their computers that would help answer the question).

Yes, they're making quite a lot of money off of the pump issue. According to the related lawsuit, the dealer cost to replace a pump is more than $1,500 (although I've checked with 5 dealers in my area and they're charging between $1,900 and $2,600), and the cost to replace an engine is up to $8,500.

I've spoken with several Ford Service Advisors in my area regarding the pump design flaw, and they've all recommended that I change the pump preemptively between 60K and 80K miles, with a couple of them going on to say that the pumps and certain timing components have been upgraded to attempt to mitigate the problem of pumps destroying engines. I have verified that the pumps and chain tensioners/guides have, in fact, been upgraded. As such, I may go ahead and preemptively replace the pump at around 30K miles -- if I decide to keep the car. ?
 

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I also don't trust dealers (not to mention that I just don't like them because they charge 4x more for the same parts/equipment I can get elsewhere). Did the Service Manager happen to give you an idea of how often a water pump failure results in catastrophic engine destruction (i.e., how many of the pump failures are due to gaskets vs. shaft seals)? The Service Advisors in my area don't seem to want to get into specifics with me on this question (they pretend that the don't know, and claim they don't have any information in their computers that would help answer the question).

Yes, they're making quite a lot of money off of the pump issue. According to the related lawsuit, the dealer cost to replace a pump is more than $1,500 (although I've checked with 5 dealers in my area and they're charging between $1,900 and $2,600), and the cost to replace an engine is up to $8,500.

I've spoken with several Ford Service Advisors in my area regarding the pump design flaw, and they've all recommended that I change the pump preemptively between 60K and 80K miles, with a couple of them going on to say that the pumps and certain timing components have been upgraded to attempt to mitigate the problem of pumps destroying engines. I have verified that the pumps and chain tensioners/guides have, in fact, been upgraded. As such, I may go ahead and preemptively replace the pump at around $30K miles -- if I decide to keep the car.
Purchased a Ford extended service plan on-line when I bought the car used. 2024 or 75,000 miles total. $200.00 deductible. All I needed was an inspection by Ford to confirm condition. That takes some of the pain away and it’s more then enough time for me. Consider it. I’m retired and only put around 3500 miles a year on this car and I have other cars to drive. So it’s minimally used. Still, it’s sure annoying knowing this.

Here’s where I purchased mine. Not affiliated with them in any way.


 

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Discussion Starter #30 (Edited)
I pulled the radiator, pressurized it, sprayed it down with soapy water and looked for bubbling everywhere, even in between the veins with a magnifying glass. There are no leaks whatsoever. The radiator held 14 PSI for well over an hour before I pulled the tester off of it. I think at this point I'm going to put some ultraviolet dye in the cooling system, drive the car for a week or so, and then look for dye everywhere that coolant could possibly leaking, including in the oil; and including pulling a valve cover and looking around the water pump itself with a UV snake camera (which I just ordered), down into the oil pan (if I can get the camera that far down past timing components through the valve cover opening, which I'm sure I can as there is reasonable space between the timing cover and timing components), and inside the cylinders. I also ran all of the old/drained coolant through a paint strainer, which took forever, but showed absolutely no particulate matter in the coolant (e.g., metal dust/shavings, rust dust/flakes, etc.).
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Purchased a Ford extended service plan on-line when I bought the car used. 2024 or 75,000 miles total. $200.00 deductible. All I needed was an inspection by Ford to confirm condition. That takes some of the pain away and it’s more then enough time for me. Consider it. I’m retired and only put around 3500 miles a year on this car and I have other cars to drive. So it’s minimally used. Still, it’s sure annoying knowing this.

Here’s where I purchased mine. Not affiliated with them in any way.


Thanks for the link! I may (likely will) get a service plan. However, even if I do, I'm the type that has to know why things are what they are. A service plan will cover me in the event of a pump failure, but I want a reasonable degree of confidence that the car I just bought isn't going to break down any time soon, especially on a road trip in the middle of nowhere. This sort of thing nags at me. :)
 

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Thanks for the link! I may (likely will) get a service plan. However, even if I do, I'm the type that has to know why things are what they are. A service plan will cover me in the event of a pump failure, but I want a reasonable degree of confidence that the car I just bought isn't going to break down any time soon, especially on a road trip in the middle of nowhere. This sort of thing nags at me. :)
I’ve used them for many service contracts for both Chrysler’s and Fords I’ve owned for the last 11 years. I won’t buy aftermarket ones, only factory. You can chose 12 monthly payments. No credit check, no financing. Also, they pro-rate any refund if you sell the car or cancel the contract before it ends. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Perhaps what you're smelling merely smells like coolant but is another, entirely unrelated odor....
I'd like to think so. I'll be happy should I find that such is the case. I will say, though, that, although I'm not a certified mechanic, I have quite a lot of experience over many years repairing and modifying cars, and building engines. I'm very highly familiar with the scent of antifreeze, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, oil, grease, washer fluid, etc. I suppose that it's possible I'm smelling something else that smells identical to antifreeze, but, off the top of my head, I can't think of anything commonly used in cars that smells identical to antifreeze. I put some UV dye in the cooling system this morning. After 100-200 miles of driving, or after I smell what I believe to be coolant a few more times, I'll check as described above in post #30. If that proves fruitless, I'm at the end of my proverbial rope in this effort.
 

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I'd like to think so. I'll be happy should I find that such is the case. I will say, though, that, although I'm not a certified mechanic, I have quite a lot of experience over many years repairing and modifying cars, and building engines. I'm very highly familiar with the scent of antifreeze, transmission fluid, brake fluid, power steering fluid, oil, grease, washer fluid, etc. I suppose that it's possible I'm smelling something else that smells identical to antifreeze, but, off the top of my head, I can't think of anything commonly used in cars that smells identical to antifreeze. I put some UV dye in the cooling system this morning. After 100-200 miles of driving, or after I smell what I believe to be coolant a few more times, I'll check as described above in post #30. If that proves fruitless, I'm at the end of my proverbial rope in this effort.
Any updates?
 
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