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Discussion Starter #1
Whenever I start my car, unless I rev it up instantly, it'll die. Sometimes if I don't hold the gas down while turning the key the engine won't even turn over. If it does turn over it'll die within 5 seconds unless I pump the gas. Once I shift into drive and start to throttle forward it's fine but from start, through reverse, and into drive it might still die. I almost got stuck 10 miles from my house on a night when my friends were out of town is an area I didn't know.

While idling in drive or reverse, before I begin to drive away, it makes a putting chugging noise and moves in such a way that my head rocks back and forth, almost like I was pumping the brakes.

Someone told me it was the Throttle Position Sensor so I replaced that and it didn't help. Tuesday I'm getting a diagnostic run but I don't know for sure if it'll show anything. I need to know what you guys think my problem is.

I have a 90 Taurus Wagon 3.8 V6 with 105,000 miles.
 
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Is the check engine light coming on? If so, have the codes scanned. That is an important part of diagnosing any problem.
 
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I would suggest looking for a vacuum leak, as FT mentioned above. Also, the IAC motor may be carboned up and causing you problems, you should be able to take it off and clean it with some carburetor cleaner.
 

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IAC, common problem on Fords. 99% chance that is your problem.

And IF need be HOLD the Gas, don't Pump the gas, it's a Taurus, not a 1974 Gran Torino.
 

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It's a 3.8...so maybe the dreaded self-cleaning mode is being turned on (ie, coolant getting into the cylinders when its turned off)?

It happens to my car when I park on an incline and there was a long thread that it might be headgasket nearing its time.
 

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QUOTE
While idling in drive or reverse, before I begin to drive away, it makes a putting chugging noise and moves in such a way that my head rocks back and forth, almost like I was pumping the brakes.[/b]
It might be EGR valve stuck open and pushing exhaust gas into idling engine.
 

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QUOTE
Whenever I start my car, unless I rev it up instantly, it'll die. Sometimes if I don't hold the gas down while turning the key the engine won't even turn over. If it does turn over it'll die within 5 seconds UNLESS I PUMP THE GAS.[/b]
Here's a Quick & Dirty Fix, if holding the Gas pedal does help to keep the engine running do this: There is a screw that regulates how much fuel is the gas pedal allowing to flow while idling, located on top of the engine (follow the Gas pedal wire to find it) just adjust it Half Turn (more or less) this will allow more fuel for idling as if you were slightly depressing the Gas pedal and you should notice the engine gaining a couple of hundreds RPMs while idling (set it to rev somewhere between 650 to 800 RPMs). It might help you to use the car for a few days while you trace the real source of the problem (Vacuum leaks, EGR, etc). It will make it waste some extra fuel but at least you will be able to take it to the repair shop or use it while you find the source of that problem. When you're done fixing it then return the screw to its original position
 

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I'm still in the process of trying to fix the same problem on my car. I get codes for a lean condition in both banks. Cullen, if you get those codes, let me know what the mechanic tells you to replace.
 
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Do not adjust the screw for the TB... why would you say that?

Sounds like a vacuum leak, or also could be a plugged cat convertor. Hows your intake tract? got any mouse nests in the air box restricting air flow?

have someone start the car (in park) and listen under the hood for a hissing noise, if you locate it plug it and see how it runs. Tapping the IAC sometimes can free the plunger and correct this if it is the IAC. doubtfull its the IAC though.
 

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While you're at it, change the Fuel Filter (just $3 or so), probably they will remove the fuel tank too to install the Fuel Pump so it might be a good idea to flush the old fuel remains inside, in my car when I changed the Fuel Pump 2 years ago I found out that inside the fuel tank it was so rusty that the fuel inside was dirty.
 

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How did thay determine it was the fuel pump? Mine keeps stalling but the fuel pump seems good i got good pressure but im still trying to figure mine out.
 

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just borrow a fuel pressure gauge, and tie it into the boss on the fuel rail. that'll let you know real quick how your fuel pump is doing.

fuel pressures:
96-00
engine running at idle.....26-45psi
key on, engine off..........37-45psi

01
engine running at idle.....50-56psi
key on, engine off..........45-56psi

I don't have info for other gen's
 

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Discussion Starter #17
replaced the fuel pump and filter at firestone, $550. IT's not stalling anymore (yet) but it still does the chugging thing. My mom, the previous owner, said it always did that and it's nothing to worry about. I'm kinda paranoid about noises, because in the past I've had cars catch on fire, throw rods, overheat, or burn/leak every ounce of oil they have.
 
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