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Old 06-23-2006, 21:24   #1 (permalink)
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confused 1990 Taurus LX engine problem

I have a 1990 Taurus LX with a 3.8L (232ci) V6. I recently had my radiator replaced 4 months ago. The car at times is getting hot wen at lower speeds and in taffic. Not much of a surprise, but the digital readout is showing overheating. When I get up to higher speeds (or moving more steadily for that matter) the meter shows the temperature as normal. I'm showing a little signs or Coolant leaking outside the engine on the passenger side more where the water pump is. I have no loss of power. Power is strong all the way to top RPM. I took the car to Pep Boys who installed the radiator and they supposedly did a test and tell me the car has a blown head gasket and I need an engine rebuild and to contact an engine shop. I think they are BSing me, but I'm not sure what all to look for. I'm planning on also getting a second opinion, but any other info i can get could help and would be really appreciated.

James

Last edited by JamesBondDB9; 06-23-2006 at 21:27. Reason: title
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Old 06-24-2006, 17:09   #2 (permalink)
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Re: 1990 Taurus LX engine problem

Most times if you have a blown head gasket, you will see it in the oil. Pull your dipstick and see if the oil looks milky. If it does, thats typical of a blown head gasket. Other signs to look for is temperature not holding steady no matter what speed you're moving. I had a '92 T-Bird that had a 3.8 in it as well. I don't know if its the same engine but I would have to imagine that they are very similar and those engines are notorious for blowing head gaskets. When mine blew, I couldn't keep a steady temperature on the guage. It would go all the way from the bottom to the top and then back again. Some less expensive things you could check would be the thermostat. My girlfriend has a '90 Sable with the 3.0 in it. It gets very hot and I suspect that the thermostat is stuck closed. As for your coolant leak, we would notice that my girlfriends car would leave a little coolant puddle in the garage under the passenger side as well. When I opened the hood, I discovered that coolant had sprayed all over the place. I hosed off the engine bay at a car wash and then drove the car for a little while to see if I could spot the leak. I had guessed previously that it was a leaky radiator cap and after I had everything cleaned up I was able to see that I was correct. $5 for a new cap and that fixed it. Let me know if theres anything else I could do to help and good luck.

Josh
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Old 07-05-2006, 15:10   #3 (permalink)
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Re: 1990 Taurus LX engine problem

James,
Please look at my post (July 5, 2006). I've a good runable/dependable engine (quart of oil every 1500 miles, road mpg is 33-34 mpg, in town about 22 mpg. Tranny shifts perfectly and the car has good accessories but my body is something to be desired. If you want to buy, contact me (I'm in Mpls MN doing contracting for the next 2-3 months) and the car is with me; my cell number is (770) 823-6820 (GA) and my name is Rolf.
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Old 07-06-2006, 08:54   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 1990 Taurus LX engine problem

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Originally Posted by blixx003
James,
Please look at my post (July 5, 2006). I've a good runable/dependable engine (quart of oil every 1500 miles, road mpg is 33-34 mpg, in town about 22 mpg. Tranny shifts perfectly and the car has good accessories but my body is something to be desired. If you want to buy, contact me (I'm in Mpls MN doing contracting for the next 2-3 months) and the car is with me; my cell number is (770) 823-6820 (GA) and my name is Rolf.

Thanks. I'm in CA and wouldn't mind, but I'm after getting a 93 Cobra now. I may have a some money coming in and my dream is to own another Mustang. I appreciate your post though. Take car.
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