We bought this car even though it had a few faults. It was cheap! The previous owner did not take care with this vehicle. There must have been a small fender bender on the right front and maybe it was broken into as well. We are fixing or getting fixed the things that bother us so we can enjoy the benefits of the repairs in the coming years.
Front rotors and pads replaced.
Right front wheel bearing replaced.
Rear drum brakes cleaned.
4 wheel alignment.
Tires balanced. (All of the above came to $500)
The headlights were completely out of whack. It was so easy to adjust them using the built in levels.
The hood was misaligned and needed adjusting. This was a game of trial and error. The window surrounds are bent out of shape. I was able to get them to the point were the windows close completely and don't make undue wind noises.
The power window switch at the right rear did not work. ($2.50 at local junk yard)
The transmission shifts kind of sudden from 1st to 2nd. We added Lucas Transmission Fix to improve shifting. It helped a little. ($8)
The suspension squeaks. The Contour Enthusiast Group website explains how to fix it: remove the sway bar bushings and apply waterproof grease to them, reassemble. It worked. What a relief!
The volume control on the Stereo Cassette does not work. I will likely replace the unit with one from the junk yard ($45).
There is a lot of engine noise under hard acceleration. I wonder if some plastic parts under the left fender are vibrating? I test drove other Contours to see if they are this loud, but they are not. Please write a comment if you can point me to a possible cause.