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Fuel filter would rarely give you a P300 code and EGR valves really don't go bad on these cars. Water getting into the cylinders is not a good diagnosis since it would have to randomly getting into different cylinders. Usually a bad head gasket would concentrate on one or two cylinders and not random misfire. I believe a vacuum leak is a strong possibility. Maybe a weak coil which is usually indicated by cracks in the plastic.
 

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Discussion Starter #22
Haven't said for sure it's water in cylinders. That's just what they are going to check for tomorrow, since the Ford dealer said they don't see anything else wrong other than the wires that were arcing. Just makes me kind of laugh that people said the guy that normally works on my car doesn't have all the fancy electronic equipment, so he can't be much of a mechanic and the dealer that I assume has all fancy electronic equipment isn't doing any better.
It was my idea to do the fuel filter and EGR, since from what I read those were two of the million things that can cause a p300 code.
 

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As Automender said, Ford EGR valves are amazingly reliable. I have never had to replace one in 33 years and many hundreds of thousands of miles of owning EFI Fords.

EGR valve can be very easily checked for proper operation. With engine idling, apply a vacuum to the EGR valve. If idle gets bad or engine stalls, EGR valve is working correctly. You "mechanic" should have known this!!!
 

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Haven't said for sure it's water in cylinders. That's just what they are going to check for tomorrow, since the Ford dealer said they don't see anything else wrong other than the wires that were arcing. Just makes me kind of laugh that people said the guy that normally works on my car doesn't have all the fancy electronic equipment, so he can't be much of a mechanic and the dealer that I assume has all fancy electronic equipment isn't doing any better.
It was my idea to do the fuel filter and EGR, since from what I read those were two of the million things that can cause a p300 code.

You don't need fancy test equipment to fix your generation of car, just a code reader for $40 but a reader for under $100 will give you real live data. Live data lets you look at long and short term fuel trims that can easily rule out vacuum leaks. If you have high positive percentage fuel trims at idle which go away at higher RPMs it indicates a vacuum leak.



Experience is key to troubleshooting engine problems and also familiarity with the engine. I have a fleet of three Taurus now and they all have the same failures.



Good luck on the fix and please post results, it helps everyone.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
My mechanic lets my buy my own parts. I was coming in for the spark plugs. So I just showed up with the EGR and fuel filter too and asked him to change them. So it was my idea to change the EGR. I have a bunch of Amazon gift cards I won. So parts aren't costing me anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Well I got the car back from the dealer and good news/bad news. There was no water in cylinders, but they claimed to have checked all the systems and found nothing wrong. However, they checked the gasoline and said it has a higher than normal content of alcohol. We always buy gas at Costco and I know it has alcohol in it. They said to try different gas. I'll give that a try and see what happens. I had to leave the car at the dealer since my wife is at work. I started it before I left and it did seem to be idling smoother, so maybe the new wire helped some.
 

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ONLY Tier 1 fuel should go in any EFI car, or any car for that matter. Not 100% sure, but I do not think Costco gas is Tier 1. Do a Google search for Tier 1 brands of fuel.
 

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I heard Costco has Tier 1 gas also. I have never use gas that is Tier 1 in any of my Taurus and I have had my 2001 for 17 years and 196k miles. Maybe you got E85 gas in there, do they offer it at your Costco? If they messed the delivery up they have the records of you purchasing it by your card swipe and they should reimburse you for expenses. It's worth a call to them.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
I filled it Thursday night with the highest octane gas that BP sells. The car was close to empty, so it pretty much has a full tank of the BP gas. So far the light has not come on, but a couple times it took close to a week to come back on after I reset it. So I'll keep my fingers crossed that it doesn't come back. If that's solved it's on to the problem of rain having ruined the heater fan motor. Sorry I ever bought this car. I'm 62 and been driving since 18 and this is the worst car I have ever owned.
 

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Putting in high octane fuel, like 93 octane in an engine designed for regular grade 87 octane fuel is a complete waste of money. Premium fuel does not have any more cleaning / detergent additives than regular 87 octane fuel. Also, 93 octane fuel has slightly less energy content per gallon than 87 octane regular grade fuel, resulting in slightly reduced gas mileage.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Well it's a week today since I picked up car from dealer and no CEL. Always before it would come back on with P300 code within a week after being cleared. So was the problem the plug wires and/or the Costco gas. Might be a waste of money, but I'm not going to tempt fate and will continue to buy the high octane BP gas.
 

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I hope your problems are solved. But after reading through this there were a lot of parts thrown at the problem with very little proper analysis. There are some very good youtube videos on how the pros diagnose issues like you were having.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Today still no CEL, so with it being 8 days I'm pretty sure that has been solved. Like I said I was getting the parts free, and everything I replaced was on the list of things that might cause a P300 code. So even though it didn't solve the problem I know I have a new EGR, plugs, and fuel filter and it was getting close to the time to change the fuel filter anyway. I assume the Ford dealer did a pro diagnose and they said I had bad wires and then said it might be the Costco gas. The P300 code is such a needle in the haystack problem to find that I was about willing to try just about anything other than tearing the engine down. I plan to give the car to my daughter, so I had to get that fixed before I signed it over to her. Monday I get the rain hat extension installed and the left and right cowl pieces replaced, since while I was dealing with the P300 code the rain leaking in ruined the heater fan motor.
 

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Basically P300 is a random miss fire code so plugs, wires and coil pack are the primary causes. Don't waste your money on premium, these cars run just fine on regular. I ran all of mine on regular, in fact regular is a fresher gas than premium as the stations move more of it on a "regular" basis. No pun intended...
 
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