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Old 10-06-2013, 01:53   #1 (permalink)
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head gasket

Hello.

My neighbor is selling a 2003ish ford Taurus. He said that their is coolant in the oil. He is not sure if it is the intake or head gasket causing this. I have a feeling it is the head gasket. Car runs perfect, and is in awesome shape overall. I am Considering buying it and fixing it. How hard is it to replace the head gaskets on this vehicle?
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Old 10-06-2013, 07:55   #2 (permalink)
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Re: head gasket

Difficulty is relative to capability. I can say that the back side heads can be a pain in the ass. If your used to in-lines, there are a few more challenges with a transverse.
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Old 10-06-2013, 21:17   #3 (permalink)
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Re: head gasket

I figured that the back side would be difficult. As far as capability goes, I do not know the most by any means, but I learn quick, and am good with most repairs...despite the issues I am having with the Explorer's brakes.
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Old 10-07-2013, 10:47   #4 (permalink)
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Re: head gasket

there are procedures that have to be followed specially with those heads. They have to
be prepared properly before replacing them. Do you know how to use a torque wrench ?
You don't just pull until you hear a click. You NEED the manual. The heads have to be checked for " thread pull " and addressed. Mating edges have to be refinished. They
don't tell you that in the manual. Once you pull the manifold you can tell right away if it
is the manifold or the heads if you know what you are looking for. I'm telling you this
because if the job is not done the right way you will do it again next week. I'd suggest
you read, read, read until your eyes bleed. Talk to people in the engine shops. I'll tell you right now. Do the valves and seals while it is apart. Be very carefull as some of those engines have different push rod lengths. DON'T MIX THEM UP. I'd suggest you take pictures as you take it apart. From 1 - 10 you are starting at about 7. Good luck
getting the exhaust pipes off. To make things alot easier you might want to take the hood off. By no means do i mean any offense. I've done many of these heads and the
last one is just as bad as the first one. Just take it slow and easy. If you start forgetting
where you put your wrench and dropping things, quit for the day. Accidently pull a lifter out while removing a push rod you are now in serious shit. I've done it. Good luck.
I might be able to help if you get stuck.
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Old 10-07-2013, 10:53   #5 (permalink)
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Re: head gasket

Also if its a 12 V 3.0 the timing cover is another possibillity


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Old 10-07-2013, 11:00   #6 (permalink)
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Re: head gasket

Forgot to tell you. Some of those engines are very picky on the head gasket you use.
After market gasket maybe. Ford, probably.
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Old 10-07-2013, 22:49   #7 (permalink)
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Re: head gasket

Thank you for all of the info. I have a torque wrench lol, and unfortunately from having to use it (misused it the first time I used it and cost myself a bit more money than necessary), do know how. However, I was unaware of having to refinish any of the surfaces. The manual does not mention that as you said. I figured to remove the hood to gain clearance...plus on this car it needs to be re-painted. I have no idea what happened to this car in its past but the hood is missing big patches of paint. I am going to talk to a ford mechanic about this further, as well as gain any knowledge I can from you guys. This is a big project to tackle, but as much as I love my Explorer, she's rotting bad....Thank you everyone for the input as I need as much info as possible.
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