Originally Posted by FoxyFordFem
Ok so I bought this 89 Ford Taurus about a year ago and right from the start it was over heating like crazy so we took it in to the shop and the fan was blown so we had it replaced along with a new thermostat. No problems since until now. We were driving the other day and for what seems like no reason at all the temp gauge shot up as far as it could go and smoke (or steam?) started coming out of the hood. We popped the hood and the smoke (or steam?) was coming from two hoses in the middle at the very back in front of the windshield (as you can tell my knowledge of cars is very limited lol) So we topped up the coolant and added some water and tried again today. Again the temp shot right up and when we stopped smoke (or steam?) was coming out of the hood like you would not believe!! I honestly thought the car was on fire! So we popped the hood and this time the smoke was mainly coming from under the battery (the rad hose I believe) my nieghbor also noticed a small crack in the steel of the radiator although I don't know if that relevent (It could be the whole problem for all I know though) There is definitly fluid on the outside of the hoses where the smoke (or steam?) is originating from. The reserve tank is dry as a bone. What could this be? How do I fix it? Can it be done myself or do I have to take it to a shop? Cause to be honest I only paid 850 for the car and am tired of pouring money into it. Also I don't know if this has any relevence to the problem but we had the transmisison pan replaced a few weeks ago and liquid gasket was used. Any help anyone can give would be greatly appreciated!!
The two hoses at the back are the heater hoses, the hose by the front is the upper radiator hose. You have to start with a pressure test of the system. You may be able to rent one at a parts store. Top off the system, put the tester on and pump it up to the pressure written on the cap. Now look for where the coolant is coming out. Look closely, especially around the engine, hoses, water pump, etc. If you have a 3.0L vulcan, common leak spots are the water pump, front cover, heater tubes (A 3.0L has bypass tubes to get better heat faster) the hoses for the heater tubes, the radiator, and the radiator hoses. If you have a 3.8L, same applies as a 3.0L with the exception of the heater tubes. The big thing on 3.8L's is head gaskets. Big money to replace depending how severe the damage is. Could just end up needing gaskets, could need a cylinder head or both. This should be a start.