11th Jan 2010, 08:41

1999 Ford Taurus (82,000 miles) - Total loss of cabin heat was resolved by a mechanic who flushed the heater core, replaced the 100% plugged reservoir feed line, thermostat and the reservoir itself as the gunk in it could not be removed. This follows a full radiator flush 6 months ago at 80,000 miles. The cabin heat worked fine for the next 10 days, at which point the head gasket blew. Replacement of the head gasket quoted at $1300; used motor with 95k miles at $2500; fully re-built motor $4700 with graphite head gaskets. Blue book value of the vehicle $1,000. Vehicle to be donated...

18th Feb 2010, 11:54

Seems that most people want to bash Ford because they bought someone else's headache. While the 3.8L had head gasket problems, Ford did stand behind this; every car maker has this issue when using aluminum heads on a cast iron block.

Don't blame Ford because your technician doesn't know what he is doing.

Flushing the cooling system because of rust build up is a temporary fix, it's not the real issue. The most common problem is the water pump internal fan blades, and or the metal heater core tube assembly that rusts, plugging up the heater core.

That being said, if it was fixed right the first time, repeat repairs and a visit to the dealer would have been eliminated.

Seems like the original poster needed to find a different dealership, and Ford should take that franchise back. Don't blame Ford because your mechanic is nothing more than a lube tech. Find a different dealership. Every car manufacturer has problems, not just Ford.

3rd May 2010, 22:31

Regarding the 3.8 liter engine, Ford should have known better in the first place -- they've been building cars since 1903; it's not like building a good engine utilizing aluminum heads on a cast-iron block is rocket science. My '85 Dodge 600 had an engine built with the same materials, plus a turbo. It overheated more than once and never blew a head gasket.

The good thing about a 3.8-equipped Taurus is that it's perfect for procrastinators -- it gives you an excellent excuse for being late for anything. My friends always enjoyed hearing about all the latest breakdowns I had with mine -- and there were a lot -- with many different parts of the car! I almost hated to see it go when I finally pulled up to the dealership in my smoking GL wagon to trade it in -- it was a terrific ice-breaker at parties!

24th Jun 2010, 09:05

From a post above: "The most common problem is the water pump internal fan blades, and or the metal heater core tube assembly that rusts, plugging up the heater core."

I am dealing with this exact problem right now. The metal heater core tube that feeds the heater core has ruptured, and is leaking horribly. The replacement part/assembly from the Ford dealer is over $125.

I'm wondering if I can just run regular heater hose from whatever the blasted ruptured hot water tube connects to near the water pump, over to the heater core hose? Is it possible to safely replace the tube with hose, and is the connection on the end closest to the water pump a simple hose clamp and not something like a pressure fitted attachment?

For that matter, the heater core ruptured several years ago, and I bypassed it with hose - because in order to replace it, apparently the entire dash, instrument panel, steering column, etc has to be removed, and the A/C system broken into and evacuated. It's utterly absurd.

I would be most grateful for any good suggestions on how to get around this heater/hot water tube rupture. In, of course, a way that results in no leaks, and no harm to the car in running it with the work-around for extended time (for example now until forever more). :0)

24th Jun 2010, 09:07

Apologies, I just posted about having a ruptured heater core hot water tube, and forgot to include that the vehicle is a 1994 Ford Taurus GL, 3.0L, (not flex fuel, not SHO).

11th Jul 2010, 07:35

Wow, I just read all those comments about the 99 Ford Taurus. I really can't understand. I have owned almost 60 used cars in my life of driving.

I bought a 99 Ford Taurus s/e brand new. I had a few things done under warranty. It now has 230,000 klm`s on it. It has the Vulcan 3.0l.

I had none of the problems I read about here. My Taurus has given me 10 years of great reliable service. I always change fluids on a regular basis. I also flush out any dirt on the bottom parts, and use about $20 yearly worth of rust check on important components, such as brake lines, backing plates, coil springs, all transmission shift components,under gas tank, rear bumpers.

Spray all your heater clamps, and any parts prone to rust and corrosion such as all electrical joint connections. Use the red nozzle to do all door locks key entry, and use the holes that are there to allow you to spray inside. For power seats, and under seat latches.

It is very important to check electrical components!! One bad wire can start a chain of electrical problems. #TIP: if your Taurus is acting funny like radio resetting, wipers coming on on their own etc... always check your battery first. If the battery is not up to full capacity, it may start the car, but still need to be replaced. If you keep running on a low battery, it can cause damage to the alternator, and cause other problems. I had a bad battery, and didn't realize it.. slow starting is a sign, but some have a reserve that kicks in for starting. Replacing it can make all the problems go away, and, in my case everything returned to normal. It's weird, but the Taurus needs a good battery, as it depends, and it's demand to the overall power source, that runs all the options that have a high demand input.

I really hope this helps. If you bought a 99 Taurus with a bad history of neglect such as delaying what needs to be done, or aggressive tire burning, and unreasonable neglect, don`t buy a Taurus or it will result in lots of headaches, and money loss. On the other hand, if it was well maintained it's a great car. My Taurus still looks, and runs like new. I love it.

8th Nov 2010, 09:09

OK, I have a 1999 Ford Taurus. On the days it's cold, it runs for a while, then dies and starts back up. Well today it did the same. I made it to the end of my road, and the car died again. I also have a leak in my heater hose. What could be the problem?

27th Dec 2010, 14:14

I have a 1999 Taurus SE with 143,000 miles. I tried flushing and a thermostat to get heat with no results. I clamped off the bypass hose and had limited heat. In the following days, the heat increased, and after a few weeks, it was so hot I had to run it on a low setting and sometimes crack the window open. I used a set of brake line clamps on the house, just in-case I get a total blockage of the heater core again, I can pull over and take the clamps off if I see the engine temp start taking off.

6 weeks with heat, and the car runs great.

5th Jan 2011, 15:29

As an alternative to high $$$ heater core replacement/repair, you can always get a 12 Volt rubberized heater with fan from your local Freight Harboring Tool warehouse for $15 - $20... heck, get a few of them. they provide instant heat and are good alternatives for defrosters that aren't working properly as well.

20th Mar 2011, 16:49

My last mechanic for beer money drank all the BEER and put disc pads with the metal to the rotor. Make sure they do not drink the beer before the work is done. Thank God Advance Auto has tools I fixed it in the parking lot and everything was beautiful. Last time I pay a beer mechanic because I'm lazy and out of town with no tools.