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Discussion Starter #1
First post here. Sorry the first one is so long!

I received a 97 taurus for free the other day. It is the 3.0 Liter DOHC 6cyl. Vin code S. The car has 125,500 miles on it. The girl who gave it to me said that it needed a throttle sensor and it would not stay running. It has been sitting in her apartment complex for ONE YEAR not moved once. The girl originally parked it because it was feeling like it was going to stall out. I got it home and put a new battery in it. The thing started right up. It idled a bit rough but then seemed to smooth out. I rented a code reader from the local auto store and plugged it in. It gave NO codes. The check engine light is NOT on. I drove the car around the hood and it seems to bog a bit around 3,800+ rpm's. I drove it for about ten minutes(temp gauge went up to norm operating range) and put the code reader on it again with NO codes again. After getting NO codes and having no check engine light I decided to check the fuel filter. Of course it looked like the stock filter, so I replaced it(air filter looked fine) Same results. There was some dark water that was released from the muffler. It looks like the Plug wires are the original one's. I pulled out a spark plug and I'm not too good at reading them but they looked ok and had some rust, so I'm assuming they also are original(may be wrong) I checked to see if it's getting fuel by depressing the schrader valve and there was fuel released. The car seems to idle just fine. If I mash the accelerator right around 3,800 the car seems to cut out. It also seems to puff out some greyish smoke momentarily. I'm just looking for some ideas as what may be wrong. Talking to some friends they have mentioned it may be the fuel pump/ a combination of the ignition coil pack thing,plugs and wires/the catalytic converter may be clogged. I'm going to get my autometer fuel pressure gauge tomorrow to check that. I have already bought plugs,wires, and the ignition coil thing and a Throttle position sensor but I have not installed any of this yet.

*Boy do I feel like an idiot. I was reving it while in park. Apparently there is a rev limiter in the ECM that won't let it over rev while in park. I shot it around the block and it seems to rev normal. Still some hesitation. I will put the plugs,wire's and coil pack then check the fuel pressure and go from there.

*Ok a little update. I put a autometer fuel pressure gauge on the car. At idle the fp is at 27psi slow accel it rises to about 30psi. Hard accel it spikes to about 37psi then slowly decreases to around 30psi. When I punch the car it still feels like it's cutting out at higher rpms then power returns. I'm excited about getting it running I just want to try to get this crap ironed out before putting insurance and a plate on it then having it break down on me. Still no check engine light. I let it idle in the driveway for about 20 minutes. Then hooked the fp gauge this afternoon and let it idle for 5 mins then drove around the block still no check engine light. Does it seem like the fuel pump is ok?

*The car has been ideling in the driveway for about 20 minutes now still no check engine light. The fp is actually about 28psi. Chiltons say's it should be around 30psi under load, the regulator seems to be working after it spikes to around 38 it makes it's way down. I put a new PCV valve in it with no change. Would this 2psi difference make it not close enough for normal engine operation, only problem is that I would think it would give me a CEL because of the drop in fp or volume.
 

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The cut out when you rev it high while moving is a natural thing. When my 97 Taurus LX was brand new it cut out and kicked in every time I passed someone on the highway. If there's no codes and everything is running fine, don't worry about it. Mine still does it. I think its some kind of governor/limiter. It'll kick it in the butt, then cut out, then lurch forward when the power returns, then cut out...yadda yadda.

You can take it to a stealership and they'll charge you about a billion dollars to tell you the same thing, I'm sure.

Again, my car did it with 20 miles on it, brand new.

Hope that helps, and hope that's all it is :))
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Originally posted by LoadedLX@Jun 26 2004, 01:54 PM
The cut out when you rev it high while moving is a natural thing. When my 97 Taurus LX was brand new it cut out and kicked in every time I passed someone on the highway. If there's no codes and everything is running fine, don't worry about it. Mine still does it. I think its some kind of governor/limiter. It'll kick it in the butt, then cut out, then lurch forward when the power returns, then cut out...yadda yadda.

You can take it to a stealership and they'll charge you about a billion dollars to tell you the same thing, I'm sure.

Again, my car did it with 20 miles on it, brand new.

Hope that helps, and hope that's all it is :))
I don't like the sound of that. Stealership is going to be a last resort. I think it's driveable now, just don't want to do major damage if something is wrong. Have you put plugs in your car? I'm doing that now, what a pain in the ass. I'm going to have half of the stupid car taken apart before I can even see the back plugs.
 

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with a 97, to change the spark plugs, just pull off the windshield cowl and then pull out the coil pack. that allows you to get to the back plugs. it's pretty simple..looks a lot harder than it really is.

yes i've changed the plugs in mine. that cut out thing happens i think because it's governed. like i said, mine's done it since day 1.

good luck with the plugs. you'll lose some skin off your knuckles, but it's not a hard job.
 
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If the car hasn't been maintained well (sounds like it hasn't), I would recommend doing some basic maintenance first, like plugs, wires, filters, oil change. It's probably blowing some smoke and running weird because it hasn't been run in a while.
 

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When it cuts out at 3800rpm, do you have it floored while say driving down a road? If so, it could be that the secondary intake runner butterflies (they open around 3800rpm when flooring the car to improve top end acceleration) are all gummed up (most people here clean them out every 20 or so thousand miles) I bet hers have never been cleaned and they are stuck shut, this should cause a code. If your mechanically inclined, you should remove the upper intake manifold and take a peek at the butterflies.

Someone will be able to elaborate more on this because they may have done it or know more information about it.

-Nick S.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Originally posted by Bob Gervais@Jun 26 2004, 07:39 PM
If the car hasn't been maintained well (sounds like it hasn't), I would recommend doing some basic maintenance first, like plugs, wires, filters, oil change.  It's probably blowing some smoke and running weird because it hasn't been run in a while.
Well I put the new plugs in today. It looks like they have been replaced because they have the same motorcraft spark plug part number as the new ones I bought. The hood sticker and owners manual had a different outdated number.(apparently ford changes the part numbers) I'm going to put the wires on tomorrow along with the coil pack and clean the Mass air meter/sensor and clean the IAC motor. I guess I'm going to put ins. and a plate on it monday or tuesday and drive it around and see what happens. The thing is the girl who owned it parked it and left it sitting because she said it was stalling and would not stay running. She said something about a throttle sensor.

When it cuts out at 3800rpm, do you have it floored while say driving down a road? If so, it could be that the secondary intake runner butterflies (they open around 3800rpm when flooring the car to improve top end acceleration) are all gummed up (most people here clean them out every 20 or so thousand miles) I bet hers have never been cleaned and they are stuck shut, this should cause a code. If your mechanically inclined, you should remove the upper intake manifold and take a peek at the butterflies.
The car seems to hesitate at higher rpm's then regain power. I ordered a upper intake gasket set and will drive it and see if it improves.

Off topic- The throttle body is dirty with a decent amount of carbon build up. It has a sticker saying NOT to clean it with anything because there is a coating on it. Is there a way to clean it with something special or do I just ignore the warning and use throttle body cleaner?

Thanks for the input everyone.
 

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My guess is the butterflies are sticking when opening and not opening up fast enough, which inturn is causing a hesistation, but since they are opening, there is no actualy "problem" for the computer to set a SES light for.

You can clean the throttle body with throttle body cleaner. They have that sticker due to people using carb cleaner as throttle body cleaner, carb cleaner will remove the film, throttle body cleaner should be safe.. You may want to read the can just incase it says anything.
 
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