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Old 02-04-2011, 12:16   #1 (permalink)
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2002 Ford Taurus thermostat/waterpump diagnosis needed

Taurus SES 2002, 106K miles. Base model

Hello!

I had a major cooling system problem last night. For a few days i have noticed the engine had a deep bellowing, almost peculating sound. I checked the coolant and it was a bit low, but nothing major.

About 2 years ago, I had a breakdown and the waterpump had to be replaced, so this is not original 2002 parts.

I'm very careful to watch my temps on the dash and never saw it go above the middle.

Yesterday, i was returning home, short drive of 2-3 miles, and noticed some sounds coming from the passenger side of the hood. Some squealing, on and off getting worse. No difference at a stop light or driving.

I pulled into a parking lot, and checked the coolant level and it looked fine. No signs of steam (yet). I was concerned enough to be worried to make it home in 2 miles.

As I drove home, I can hear the squealing getting louder. That engine groaning sound. Still the gauge showed normal to low temp. I can see steam coming from the passenger side of the hood.

I made it home, and can see a lot of steam, and much water dripping out.

With my limited knowledge, I was hoping it was just a stuck thermostat. So this morning I added a gallon of water to see if it was still leaking. Yes, a lot of leakage, I'm guessing from the water pump.

I'd appreciate advice. I'm thinking there are multiple problems.

1) I'm thinking that early groaning sound I heard was the thermostat not opening and the fluid boiling in the engine creating a lot of pressure.

2) The temp gauge did not show it over heating ever.

3) Now, with limited inspection, I see fluid dripping from the rear of the water pump by the engine.

So, I don't think changing just the thermostat will work since it is leaking. Would the water pump be trashed from that short drive home? Could it just have blown its gasket?

Why would I not have seen the temp gauge go to HOT if I'm getting steam from the engine? Is that another problem?

I think I remember two years ago, that it was more than the water pump being replaced. The serpentine belt, and if I remember he said that some electronic device monitoring the temp had to be replaced which was costly. I'm not sure what that part is.

Any help would be appreciated. I'm in a financial bind like many of us, and If its something I can fix I need to do it.

Thanks

Max
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Old 02-04-2011, 15:40   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus thermostat/waterpump diagnosis needed

Update: I removed the thermostat in case it was the reason for the overheating. See attached pictures. I put it in hot water and it did open. i replaced it anyway to check that off the list. i bought a new water pump gasket, but could use some advice on removing the water pump. i believe i can get access via the passenger wheel well, if i remove the inner cover?

Thanks.

There is definitely flowing fluid from the pump. But how do i test the sensor? Like I said, the gauge temp never went above the middle even when steam was coming out. But am I correct, that would have just switched on the radiator fans?

Its starting to get late here, so I don't think I can try and remove the pump today. How long should that take?

Any special tools?

Thanks

Max
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Old 02-04-2011, 17:03   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus thermostat/waterpump diagnosis needed

You should be able to remove the pump from the top. It usually takes about 3 hrs. I'd take the belt off and see if any other pulleys are bad. If it's leaking, then the pump has to be replaced. But check further to be sure.
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Old 02-04-2011, 17:23   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus thermostat/waterpump diagnosis needed

Quick question: Is there a rubber O-ring for the thermostat? I don't think I saw one when I removed it, and I didn't get one from Kragen when I bought the new one. Just a $1 gasket and some black silicone seal.

I didn't put any silicone on the sticky side of the gasket. is that okay?
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Old 02-04-2011, 18:47   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus thermostat/waterpump diagnosis needed

If that engine (Vulcan) is the same or similar to what is used in a 99SE, make sure the water is coming from the pump and not from the timing gear cover. Replacing that son-of-a-dog is a challenge!

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Old 02-04-2011, 19:03   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus thermostat/waterpump diagnosis needed

Take the drivebelt off and run it very shortly and listen for the noise. If it still makes noise, Foggy can tell you what's best.
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:12   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus thermostat/waterpump diagnosis needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bert View Post
Take the drivebelt off and run it very shortly and listen for the noise. If it still makes noise, Foggy can tell you what's best.
Bert---

Not sure if my advice is best; I got a quote for $1000 to change the timing chain gasket along with the water pump. And add to that, a new ball joint, new rear struts/springs or whatever +++++. I did get another quote for about $600 to change just the gasket. One would have to be having a love affair with the thing to spend that many bucks.......my car had about 180K on it.

I just went out and purchase another S@@@ box for $1100 with less than 80K miles. But that has its own problems that I discussed here in the forum.

AAaahhhhhh------------- THERE ARE NO FREE LUNCHES @#$%^&!!!

Foggy
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