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Discussion Starter #1
1992 Sable

1. My check engine light comes on from time to time, usually it'll come on after I've been driving five to ten minutes and then stay on for the rest or at least most of my trip. It has done this for years, since way before I owned it (when it was my dad's), and my aunt's 92 Sable's light also came on frequently, AND her 95 Sable's light did the same. I've heard this gen of Sables (and maybe Tauruses) does this for no reason, and it doesn't actually mean something's wrong just because it's on. Is this true?

2. My car "chirps" when idle. You could also call it a squealing sound, but I think a bird chirping non-stop describes it best. When the car is first turned on you can't hear it, but then after I drive a minute or two it can be heard any time I idle or slow to 35 mph or lower. Then as I speed up, the sound becomes quicker and quieter and then goes away completely at highway speeds. It comes from the fanbelt area. Last fall I had a new fanbelt put on as I thought that was the cause, and it did fix it for awhile, but then it came back again. A month or so ago I had to jump a guy's car in the parking lot at work, and when we were doing it he noticed the sound and told me to just use some WD-40, and he pointed to an area somewhere beneath the fanbelt. Can anyone clarify if this would help, and where exactly he was pointing, and if this is something I can do without removing any belts (i.e., myself)?

Thanks.
 

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For the CEL, go to Autozone and have the codes read. Autozone will read them for free. Bring the codes back here and post them, and we can work on resolving that issue.

As for the fanbelt, the "chirping" you're hearing is the fanbelt slipping. I have heard of people using wd-40 to remedy this problem, but I'm not sure of what the long term effects of using the wd-40 on the rubber are. The chemicals might break down the rubber polymers and cause the belt to snap. Anyone else?

JR
 

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Discussion Starter #3
1. So it's not true that that era has a defective CEL? Because I think it's done it since the car was new.

2. Fanbelt slipping... So if I got a new one last year, would that mean that something else is to blame? Would this eventually cause a more serious problem?
 

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The fanbelt slipping might be caused by one of your accessory (ac compressor, water pump, alternator) pulleys being out of alignment. I would take a look at that and see if they all line up perfectly. Even fractions of an inch could cause that.

I dont' know about the defective CEL...personally, I'd take it to Autozone, just to be sure that nothing is wrong.

How many miles?

JR
 

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Discussion Starter #5
1. I'll wait and see if anyone else comments on the CEL. If no one knows or if they can verify that's not true I'll take it down.

2. So you think I should just bring it in to the shop for that matter? It's been doing it for a long time. I got the car in July of 2003 and it did it then. I then got a new fanbelt that fall and that fixed it. Then a few weeks later it started again, and it's been doing it ever since.

A little over 127,000.

3. It also burns some oil, which can be smelled, but it has seemed to lose less than a quart in a three month period so I hope it's alright. I've just been checking it every other week or so. There are wisps of white which come from under the hood, I'm not sure if that's from the oil or something else entirely like a hose. I think the oil leak would cost about $300 to fix. Ick...

Inspection was Saturday, new washer pump, wipers, front brakes, muffler, tail pipe, intermediate pipe, $417.04.

4. Today I found that my washer fluid still does not work. However, I could blame the shop for this and get them to fix it for free, even if it's something OTHER than the pump, correct? Since he did pass the car on Saturday.

I just turned this into FOUR inquiries lol.
 

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auto stores scan codes free....just go have it done...

as for the fan belt...buy some belt dressing and spray that on there...depending on the chirp that your getting, it may be the bearing in the AC compressor or waterpump...

Is the burning oil smell from the exaust or just the engine compartment?

WW problem...cant remember how they set it up that year, but i no with my '96 i have to turn the highbeams on, hold them there, then turn on the turning signal to get the washer fluid to come out....it may just be dirty contacts in the switch. If your pump is bad its just 10 bucks and pretty easy to do yourself.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
1. I'll do it then and post back.

2. Belt dressing, just something in a spray bottle? Can be found at local AutoZone? Do I just spray it directly on the fanbelt next to the washer fluid resevoir while it's running?

3. The burning oil smell is just from the engine compartment. After the car has been on for awhile white wisps start to come from under the hood. After I park and turn it off and get out, you can see the smoke coming from under the hood and from above the front wheels. I asked my mechanic what he thought that might be and he said maybe just the oil burning on the engine. In April he confirmed that the leak was around valve gaskets and would probably cost $300 to fix. I'd love to get it done, that's just a lot of cash.

4. This is sort of funny. Ever since I've owned the car, a little over a year, I never thought it worked. Tried it, never came out. That thought was confirmed since, when I got it inspected Saturday, he told me I needed a new washer pump. So I tried it yesterday and it still didn't work. Then I found out you have to HOLD IN the end of the lever for a second before it comes out. So I've been doing it wrong ever since I owned the car. So yes, it works just fine. That made me wonder, has it ALWAYS worked fine? Did I even need that new washer pump? Well, probably, because even if it did work fine all that time, maybe the old pump was weak or something. I trust the mechanic I go to, I don't think he made an unnecessary repair.
 

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I have a '95 Sable and for the last couple years that I've had the car, the CEL has never come on except for the start up dianostic test. Some Autozone stores won't check older cars and in that case, I recommend looking at the following site:

http://dalidesign.com/hbook/eectest.html
 
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