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Not sure if anyone looked at this but my interest is in the Gen 4 Taurus. I see plenty of Gen 4's at Pick n Pull. Many have no body damage. I rarely see any with over 200,000 miles. Doesn't really mean much, as most owners don't do repairs themselves, but is this the general observation out there?

Spock
 

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Not sure if anyone looked at this but my interest is in the Gen 4 Taurus. I see plenty of Gen 4's at Pick n Pull. Many have no body damage. I rarely see any with over 200,000 miles. Doesn't really mean much, as most owners don't do repairs themselves, but is this the general observation out there?

Spock
Been to our local Pick A Part a number of times. Pic shows, throttle cables rotted into by battery acid. There is a battery cover to prevent this, but if it is left off by a shop, you risk this. Cost of tow and replace the cables might be quite high, only source is the JY and much labor. And likely this car has other poor maint. And, I usually see the air filter coated in oil. That is because the PCV is stuck and pushing crankcase junk back into the accordion. Once this condition is made you have poor idle due to PCV, and oil plugged air filter makes it weak on power. Lots of code too I would guess. However, here in the rust belt, it is mostly rust.

As to the battery cover, my used '03 bought couple years back had no cover. The hose clamp on the large hose adjacent was digging into the battery but not bad yet. I got a cover at the JY. New battery too.

-chart-
 

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Not sure if anyone looked at this but my interest is in the Gen 4 Taurus. I see plenty of Gen 4's at Pick n Pull. Many have no body damage. I rarely see any with over 200,000 miles. Doesn't really mean much, as most owners don't do repairs themselves, but is this the general observation out there?

Spock
Probably blown trans cars. That's the 125k to 150k mark. Most folks never do any trans. service never mind any regular proper maintenance.
As long as it starts and goes who cares if all kinds of lights are lit up on the dash.
When you have to pay someone for maintenance it gets ignored, that money cuts into the IPhone 27 fund.......
The 2 biggest expenses in the average persons life are homes and vehicles and they are the most neglected until a major issue pops up.
 

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Yep, says 150,252 on the beautiful digital dash on my 1988 wagon. But thats wrong. Dash is out of a 90 sho, digital cluster from a junkyard 95 sable. Installed and it said 125k. Last dash from my 88 said 180k when I gutted the interior to put the sho interior in it. So the body/chassis has 205k miles. The motor is 3.0 sho from the same 1990 was removed was rebuilt in the 88 wagon when the new digital dash said 135k. So only 15k on the motor. Hopefully I got a lot of life left in the motor. The manual tranny was rebuilt with good used gears/syncros from another and the diff welded. It has about 5k miles on it, but doesn't matter, nothings new in that tranny, and cannot find them anymore. I have another box of tranny parts but I think thats going to end my car someday down the road, the transmission. Hopefully not for another 30 years
 

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Sensor (an 03 Tarsus SES) currently has ~195,600 miles on her (might not be 200k per see, but close enough to be included :). I bought her in July 2015 from a former boss (mechanic by trade) with ~ 165k on her.

Over the last 19 months I've replaced the tires and shocks (Oct 2015 ~172k), replaced the idler pulley (Oct/Nov 2015), Removal of A/C after a seizing that ripped the belt apart (Mid 2016) Spark Plugs, HT Leads/Coil Packs (Sept 2016 ~ 186k). She has some rust damage on the rear driver wheel well (typical) and rattles a little under acceleration. Nonetheless she still runs strong as hell. Majority of her miles nowadays is highway (~90 a day) between 65 & 75 in cruise control) and avg mid to high 20's (pending on time of year and seasonal gas blends), with no CELs. Currently on track to hit 200k in April/Early May area.
 

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Don't Be Stupid
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My 2000 made it to ~200k miles (totaled).
My 2010 made it to ~120k miles (totaled).
My 2013 is at ~93k miles.
 

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Discussion Starter #27 (Edited)
So i have now owned by Taurus for a solid 6 months and to be honest it has been a lot of work. i knew getting into this car that i would have to do a lot of basic maintenance but boy howdy did i underestimate just how much i was gonna need to do. here is a list of things i replaced since purchasing the car in August 2016.

New Windshield
fuel filter change
IAC sensor changed
MAF sensor changed
PCV Valve Changed
Transmission filter change
Transmission fluid flush/change
Spark plugs x 6
oil change
oiled my Camshaft position sensor due to it starting to chirp a little
Thermostat and Coolant flush
replaced Starter
Replaced front rotors and brake-pads
replaced blower motor.
fixed exhaust leaks
all motor-craft parts were used except Rotors and brakes.

as well as many many other small little repairs. all in all some of these did not have to be done and some defiantly needed to be done! ( Transmission fluid/ Filter ) the starter was replaced due to the car leaving my stranded at a In n Out i replaced in in the parking lot and was on my way..

i bought the car with 155k miles and now i have 161,300 so in 6 thousand miles i have done quite a lot of work to the car. i believe i have worked the majority of the kinks out of it now and it seems to idle and run like a dream. i will continue to let you all know my story as i continue to own this car. i know it might not be everyone's favorite but honestly this car has taught me alot about maintaining a car. i really am planning on at least 200k out of this thing. i truly suspect that the car will need struts all the way around here shortly but i will keep running it as is for now.

i have still been running into a problem where my car seems to idle smoother with the headlights on ? i know this seems silly but when the motor is cold if i start the car up and not turn the headlights on the cars seems to run crappy for awhile. i tested the voltage and 13. ish volts to the battery with lights on engine running. lights off i get like 14v to the battery so i know my alternator is doing its job. i think its some dumb like PCM problem or something. also i get a weird vibration when i brake hard going like 60 or 70 almost feels like brake rotors but i just replaced them. i suspect it could have to do with the transmission because it only seems to happen when i brake when the car is in overdrive. if anyone has any similar issues and was able to resolve them i would greatly appreciate any advice.

To all of those out there that was looking for a cheap reliable beater. i really do not know how you can not look into buying one of these. i have had to do alot of work to mine but in all reality i love this car so much and i really would have done what i did to this car to any other whip i bought so. i only have had 1 taurus and i want another already haha. Ford is my favorite. hope everyone's Bulls good-luck on this journey we call life !
 

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Exalted Grand Poobah
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Most of your list is regular maintenance deferred by previous owner(s). You will be doing some major work on the suspension sooner or later but if you are handy with tools - and have them! - and a place to work on the car, it's all doable by the owner. I've rebuilt the front and rear ends of my car within the past five years and the difference in handling and ride was amazing.

On one level, it's a shame you got stuck doing all that catch-up maintenance - but on the bright side, YOU know it was done and when it was done. Nice work, so far - keep it up!
 

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Discussion Starter #29
i bought 4 new Struts assembly's for my car but i am somewhat hesitant to put them in, 1 i have never done it on any car, and 2 i just dont know if replacing motorcraft parts with brand new aftermarket struts will really be a good idea in the long run. i mean i am still gonna do it most likely since i have them but i have heard that the aftermarket struts are kind of "Hit or miss" but i guess new is better then 13 years old parts with 160k on them.

and you are right about the standard maintenance, i really shouldent be surprised i did that stuff, the main reason i did it is because like you said so I have a record of what actually has been replaced, the owner before me was a older lady and i dident get the impression she took the car in for routine maintenance just oil changes if that. but for whatever reason the Taurus has really grown on me i really enjoy driving the car even with its qwerks . i will be one of those fellas on here that owns a few bulls before its out of my system. they really are a simple car to work on in my experience so far. Thank you for the kind words though i enjoy this forum and the members have always helped me with whatever i have needed in terms of advice. thew road to 200K continues haha
 

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New struts always went into my cars at the 130k mile mark. No more saggy rear end and a new car ride. I've used Monroe or KYB complete struts in several different Sables with no issues other than getting a salt zone car apart.
Your on the West coast so you will not have to deal with the corrosion / frozen fasteners like we in the salt zone have to deal with.
Change them out, you'll be happy ya did.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Thank you for the vote of confidence! I will dig into the Struts very soon. did you have to lower the sub frame to fit the new struts Assemblys in or did your fit in without having to lower the sub frame? i have heard mixed reviews on that. but i appreciate all the feedback! its nice to see others that genuinely like the Ford Taurus pretty much all my family/friends think they are ugly,stupid cars lol.
Some people just dont understand that Taurus life hahahaha.
Cheers !
 

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Discussion Starter #32
i been going to the pick n pulls around my area and your right i see a lot of Taurus in there around the 160 - 200K mark that are in decent shape but obviously they are there for a reason, my guess is transmission issues honestly lol but i guess any number of things could cause it. i think the main reason you see so many is the fact that it isn't a very desirable car in general so people just drive um into the dirt and junk um. but i am quite surprised at the number of over 200K Taurus i see in the junk yards. its funny because my brother made the joke to me the other day saying, " No wonder you find a bunch of them in the pick n pulls they are junk cars thats where they belong" clearly me and my brother do not see eye to eye on certain things. i will agree there is alot of them out there but as for them being ****/junk cars lol i mean they where like one of the best selling ford Fleet vehicle next to the crown vic for years and years. but you know what they say .... Haters gone hate hahaha my brother and his Toyotas can live happily ever after for all i am concerned lol,

Taurus life !
 

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Exalted Grand Poobah
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Only deal with the struts, at least on earlier models, was loosening the pinch bolts on the spindle that holds the bottom end of the strut in place. That may take some doing if the pinch bolt's corroded. if not, some penetrating solution (my favorite is 50/50 mix of acetone and ATF) on the bolt and threads overnight, and easy pressure on the wrench. No impact tools! - you'll snap the bolt head clean off.

If seriously corroded to the point of permanent marriage you'll have to drill it/them out, tap the spindle and use oversized bolts to re-assemble. Some people avoid tapping, and use lag bolts with hex nuts and LocTite instead. Your call, should things be that annoying.

Otherwise, the topside is easy - three hex nuts to remove at each strut tower beneath the hood, and the struts fall right out. Assembly is the reverse of removal. I found a shop jack to be of immense help on this job. NBD for me, I'm still using the one I bought at Shuck's in Lynnwood over 20 years ago. Best $18 I ever spent. :)
 

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Exalted Grand Poobah
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" No wonder you find a bunch of them in the pick n pulls they are junk cars thats where they belong"
I'll let you and him know if I ever wear mine out. ;)
 

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Thank you for the vote of confidence! I will dig into the Struts very soon. did you have to lower the sub frame to fit the new struts Assemblys in or did your fit in without having to lower the sub frame? i have heard mixed reviews on that. but i appreciate all the feedback! its nice to see others that genuinely like the Ford Taurus pretty much all my family/friends think they are ugly,stupid cars lol.
Some people just dont understand that Taurus life hahahaha.
Cheers !
I used a six foot pry bar in the holes of the lower control arm to get the knuckle low enough to strut off. You can also lower the sub frame an inch to an inch and a half.

The front pinch bolts can be a bear since the corrode into the aluminum knuckle. One came out easy the other was an hour plus of penetrating oil, heat and impact gun. I got it out by tightening it really hard which broke the bond.

Rear pinch bolt can be difficult also. 50/50 to be corroded on the non threaded side. Heat and penetrating oil over a couple of hours can improve the odds. If all else fails drill the rear one out or use a cobalt left handed drill bit which in one of my replacements backed out a snapped bolt. One I drilled all the way through and replaced with a through bolt. Six came out like they should two didn't.
 

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I've never dropped a sub frame for struts. 3 foot pry bar used here.
Like Automender said, but he's in the salt zone like me so if you follow his directions you shouldn't have a problem.
 

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I've never dropped a sub frame for struts. 3 foot pry bar used here.
Like Automender said, but he's in the salt zone like me so if you follow his directions you shouldn't have a problem.
Last time I changed my plan for pinch bolt. See pic, note the damaged threads are not in the area where they engage the female threads. It is where the index tab on the strut is bound up in the threads. So on my last ones, rear '03, I sawed the tab off above the knuckle. That let the bottom part of the tab free of the bolt. The tab is very soft metal and easy to cut. It is welded well above the knuckle. I have done 4 sedans rears and the old style G-1 have iron fronts with the same issues. I have done three fronts with the aluminum knuckle and the bolt and nut with no issues.

-chart-

PS: in the rust belt, I remove the sub frame bolts and replace as needed. Pic my '01 (now sold) and the ones I got from the ground in the JY for replacing. I grease the shanks with wheel bearing grease up to the point on the threads that engage the nut. I drop the sub frame for fronts. I put a jack under the sub and let it down as needed. Works for the Alt on DOHC too.
 

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I've never dropped a sub frame for struts. 3 foot pry bar used here.
Like Automender said, but he's in the salt zone like me so if you follow his directions you shouldn't have a problem.
Didn't look at his location. He should not have too much of an issue with the pinch bolts in California.
 

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Discussion Starter #39
Didn't look at his location. He should not have too much of an issue with the pinch bolts in California.
Thanks everyone for the reply i appreciate all the help i can get i am by no means a mechanic but i love wrenching on my own vehicles. i will be doing my struts sometime in the next month or so and i will keep you all posted on the progress. again i appreciate all the feedback ! i know i must have it easy giving i am not living in the rust belt but still doing something for the first time is always a tad nerve wrecking, but i feel it wont be that hard givin al the advice and tips from you all as well as Youtube videos haha.

<--- Certified you-tube mechanic :D
 

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I presume that the transmission is usually the killer of most Bulls, as those such as the AX4S maintain an awful reputation of premature failure, but the motors are known for a healthy lifetime of at least 250k! I don't anticipate that DIY rebuilds are too expensive ($500-$700).
 
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