Taurus Car Club of America : Ford Taurus Forum banner

1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi everyone,

New to this forum but not to Ford Products. Recently purchased a 2001 Taurus SE with the 3.0 Vulcan V6 with 135k on the clock. Local car, some rust, but seems in pretty good condition otherwise. Needed a new schrader valve on the low side of the AC. Coolant needed to be changed so I had a full service done with a flush. Twice this week, I found a puddle of coolant under the car just inside the wheel on the passenger side, closer to the front of the car. This is only happening after a drive of 30 minutes or more at highway speed after it is shut off. My stepson uses it to work locally, and it doesn't happen then on his short drive. I know that you have to drive it 20 minutes or so for the engine to reach operating temp but his drive is about 10 minutes. Temperature never spikes, stays steady. No white smoke coming from the back indicating a head gasket issue, coolant reservoir tank does not seem to be leaking. Took out the passenger headlight to check behind it. Saw a little fresh coolant on the fender on one of the lines headed toward the firewall right where the insulation starts. Barely a whiff of antifreeze if any. Noticed moisture on the hood insulator over the reservoir and cap was loose when we first got it home. Tightened cap and it hasn't worked loose since. Water pump sounds good, I fear this might be a radiator issue. Freeze plug maybe?

Sorry to be so long winded. He goes back to college in the fall and I don't want this to be any more of an issue than it has to be. My gut is telling me we missed something, or worse, creating a problem where there was none by doing the system flush, which was badly needed. Previous to the service, no antifreeze leaked at all, but the coolant was low in the reservoir.

Please help.

Thanks!!!!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,571 Posts
I am not sure if this helps. I have a 2003 with the Vulcan engine. I have a similar issue where I see light grey steam emerge from the hood 20 minutes into my 35mph commute. I when I pull over and lift the hood it stops.

I find coolant on the bottom of the passenger side oil pan. But never the ground. I add a little coolant ever other month as my fluids are not mixing.

Just an aside.

Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,857 Posts
Check the bottom of the expansion tank for the cracks. They are notorious for cracking on the bottom with age. Also check for dry rotted hoses and the timing cover gasket as well as everything else Sheila mentioned.


Sent from AutoGuide.com App
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,026 Posts
There are many leak point on a Vulcan. I have been through most of them..
;)

My last leak was the lower radiator hose where it has a hard rubber joint
to connect the degass line. It molded and glued so there is no fixing it other
than replacement. This leak will be more forward toward the radiator.

The water pump can weep out the weep hole, bad water pump gaskets,
or water pump mount to engine gasket.

The degass tank is a constant source of issues on GEN3. They develop
cracks in the bottom (where you cannot see it well until its off).
they then leak under pressure when you drive. If you go to the boneyard
and look at Gen3's, You will find more often than not the Degas tanks
are cracked (making it harder to find a good one when you need it)

I have also have had the radiator core bypass hose weep around the
molded hard rubber T fitting on the passenger side. You can break the
old part off and replace with a plastic T fitting and clamps rather than
replace the bypass hose assembly.

If in doubt, get some engine degreaser and spray down everything in that
area. Once its clean, get the car hot and shut it off.
open the hood and listen for hissing noises and look carefully for small
leaks. Leave the degass lid on because you want it to be under pressure
when your looking for leaks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks everyone, the degas tank is the one constant everywhere I check....all your input is welcome. Going to have it pressure tested Wed morning. Degas tank still 1/4 full, and thus far I have seen no steam....we will find it, and I will keep the forum posted. I have two guys that I trust...if one can't find it the other one usually does.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
728 Posts
Another tricky spot is at the heater core hose inlet and outlet. Coolant can drain out the hose ends and get under the insulation which spreads the leak elsewhere.

I noticed this with my car after I had my mechanic replace the heater core. It is leaking behind the insulation dripping down to a drain hole under the car that is close to the heater core. Nothing inside the car though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Thanks again....funny you mentioned that...I checked the heater and it works fine. Here's the kicker...I drove it to my mechanic, 25 minutes..engine up to operating temp. Went for dinner and returned to his lot (about 1 hr later)...NO LEAK...WTF? The two other times we drove it more than 15 minutes it left large puddles under the car. Now, nothing. Coolant in the tank at same level as it was when we left home. I did run the heater for about 90 seconds before I dropped it off. BTW, engine light came on this morning, hope it's minor. Have sunk over $500 into the car since we got it home last week. Everything else about the car seems solid (aside from the rocker panel rust), I just don't get it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
85 Posts
"Crazy" is the mental condition that only manifests when trying to explain well documented bodily or vehicular conditions to the appropriate technician at said time it no longer manifests.

Murphy's law..

Son of a bitch.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
728 Posts
Thanks again....funny you mentioned that...I checked the heater and it works fine. Here's the kicker...I drove it to my mechanic, 25 minutes..engine up to operating temp. Went for dinner and returned to his lot (about 1 hr later)...NO LEAK...WTF? The two other times we drove it more than 15 minutes it left large puddles under the car. Now, nothing. Coolant in the tank at same level as it was when we left home. I did run the heater for about 90 seconds before I dropped it off. BTW, engine light came on this morning, hope it's minor. Have sunk over $500 into the car since we got it home last week. Everything else about the car seems solid (aside from the rocker panel rust), I just don't get it.
You need to actually stick your finger under the heater hose all the way to the metal of the firewall, behind the insulation. That is where my leak is at. It is not just tightening up the clamp, but making sure the hose is in the right place on the nipple.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
1st leak found on mine was the plastic T fitting on the heater hose. It didn't always leak & when it did it ran down the fire wall and came out in differant places. I just bypassed the heater core. 2nd was a crack on the bottom of the tank. Would drip passenger side front.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Pressure test today....revealed the most common cause, leaking coolant tank. Check Engine was a bad gas cap. Got off cheap drove it all over the place today and so far so good....Thanks for everyone's help!!! Will keep an eye on this....:D
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top