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Ford Taurus/Mercury Sable Sedans Pre-2008

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Comments

  • jbbw20jbbw20 Posts: 38
    I have a question regarding 03 Taurus. ( I hope this is the correct place to post the inquiry, I just got blasted in the Intrepid forum for suggesting that Chrysler is the master of decontenting, some kids think their toys are always superior.)

    Operation range for remote door locks, problem being--when using the remote starter I first have to unlock the doors-to disable the alarm. I find the range for the remote starter to be much greater than the range for the door locks. Any comments?
  • ehennessehenness Posts: 92
    If it's a Taurus/Sable question of any sort, hey, why not post here!

    The factory remote range is pretty decent. I just checked what it says in the owner's manual--typical range is up to 10 meters away, which is 33 feet. In practice, my '98's shoots a lot farther than that. I've been more than 50 feet away, and as long as the car is at my height or below me, it unlocks fine. When you're downhill from the car, it won't work as well. I think the antenna's just below the dash top in the middle, so the mass of the car blocks the signal when you're downhill from it.

    Are you near cellular phone towers or any other kind of transmitter (police department, TV/radio station)? That can desensitize the receiver in the car and cut the range down to 'I need to stand at the car door' before it works. Might be that the starter receiver is either in a different frequency range or is less sensitive to the signals you're near, if that's the case.

    Range can also be affected by what the car is parked around. If it's surrounded by cars or tightly parked near a building, that will affect range too.

    How new is the remote battery? That can make a difference. Then again, I have not changed mine in 3 years (dunno if they were new or not when I bought the car) and the range has not changed.

    I think the '03s (based on dealer loaners) use the same remote as my car, so the comments should apply.

    If you can fire the Ford remote from 10 meters or so, then the thing's likely working right, even if the range is not as far as you'd like. Sorry I can't help more than that.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    I didn't even realize remote starter is a factory option on Taurus. Is this a recent addition to the available options?

    My remote unlock seems to work from at least 50 feet or so, and I have yet to replace the batteries from when the car was new-at three years now.

    As far as decontenting goes, from 2000-2003 I haven't detected much decontenting on the various Taurus models, just a little reworking of the option packages, but with the larger rebates available now, I think you can get more for bang for buck on a Taurus than you could 3 years ago, despite some increases in MSRP.
  • jbbw20jbbw20 Posts: 38
    Thanks for the informative and polite response. I am probably expecting too much from the remote, the range required is approx 25m and directed toward the side of the car. I will try parking at an angle and direct the remote toward the front and test the result. When I picked the car up I told the salesman I might have a problem with the range and offered an extra key apparently the alarm won't sound when the motor is started with the door locked as long as there is a key in the ignition. Although we have no problems with auto theft in this area I do not want to take that route. I am going to change the battery in the remote, perhaps Radio Shack has one of higher quality.
    Badgerfan: The remote start was a dealer installed option and the antenna is at the top of the windshield which probably makes a difference. I am new with Ford and the Taurus I have has the "standard" equipment like ABS side air bags, moonroof etc. Before I purchased I did check the Intrepid and everything there appears to be an option or not available. It would be simplier for those people to sell you the window sticker as standard and then list the car as an option.
  • shank6shank6 Posts: 64
    Well, looks like it's the other tie rod. The cost is $180.00. He also says the brakes are "paper thin".

    I've got 55,000 miles on this car and this is the second set, Does anyone know if this seems normal mileage for brake wear?.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    Brake wear seems to be highly variable depending on your driving style and perhaps the terrain where you live and drive as well. I usually don't begin to think about the first brake pad/shoe replacements until 50K or so. I am not particularly gentle on stops, but not the worst either. My current Taurus is at 28K and I haven't bothered to have the brakes checked. Are you sure your mechanic is not inventing brake problems-does he have a big boat payment coming up?
  • edmund2460edmund2460 Posts: 293
    Putting aside the merits of the USA Today article and the estimation of operating expenses, and they do look flaky to me at $3K-5K for 3 years, I would argue that depreciation is important. Does not matter if you keep you car for 30 years, it is an asset that you own and part of your net worth. Whether you are filing for bankruptcy or not, if your net worth is lower because of a faster depreciation, that should be taken into account. I don't know if it is part of the cost of ownership but it is relevant regardless of your trading strategy.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    I have never considered a car part of my net worth. Not the kind of item I consider an asset because of it's rapid depreciation no matter what you buy.

    To me, about the only time rapid depreciation could hurt me personally is if the car is totalled and the insurance payoff is less. But, the rapid depreciation my Taurus has also keeps my insurance costs down, so there is even a monetary tradeoff there as well. Additionally, one should consider that you can get a well equipped Taurus with a good performing DOHC V-6 for $18K+TTL. Try to find that price for a new comparably equipped Camry V-6 or Honda V-6. The $3K-$5K I did not spend for the more expensive Camry or Accord is an asset that I have that will not depreciate (unless of course I should decide to dump it into the wrong stock, but that is another subject).

    My three year old Taurus has cost nothing in maintenance other than routine oil changes, filters, tire rotations. How people can be presumably spending a lot of money on other than gas, insurance, and oil changes in three years is quite beyond me, especially when the first 3 years or 36K miles is full factory warranty. Only if you put up that 36K miles in a hurry could you have potentially non-warranty repair costs in the first three years.
  • riswamiriswami Posts: 192
    I'll be doing my front brakes very shortly on a 97 GL with just under 95k. I did the rears (discs) about two months ago. I bought the car with 23k so I would guess this is the first time for both sets.

    I also don't look at a car as an asset. It is an expense in my mind. So cost of purchase and ownership are big factors to me.

    I've had my Taurus for 5.5 years. In that time I've had two repairs - a door switch and a cam sensor. (brakes are a wear item and a maintenance expense)Mine was one of those former rentals, so much for them falling apart and being abused!
  • s852,

    Thanks so much for your quick and helpful response. I think, based on talking with you and a mechanic friend of mine, that I'm going to forgo the extended warrantee. Does anybody else have any opinions they'd like to add on extended warrantees?
  • venus537venus537 Posts: 1,443
    in the same way you don't see yourself spending over $20k for a 300M, i don't see myself spending $18k for a taurus.
  • shank6shank6 Posts: 64
    Hey badgeran, you may have a point. The current set of rotors and pads only has 20K on them. Most of my driving is highway, but with all the construction up here (NH and MA) you invariably have to stand on them once in a while.

    The thing that puzzles me is, the service guy telling me "your brakes are paper thin". When I told him the rotors are still fairly new he says "well you need them cut then". It might be time to go back to Midas.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    I was sure Ford would make larger mirrors for the revised 2004 Taurus. Don't you think the outside mirrors are way too small, especially comparing to Impala, Camry and Accord?
  • riswamiriswami Posts: 192
    cut the rotors. Rotors warp on these cars and new ones are fairly inexpensive. If you have to do the brakes get new rotors.
  • danielj6danielj6 Posts: 285
    I just got back from 9 vacation day spent in 2 South American countries. No Tauri, Sables or Camries there. Mostly WV's, Peugeots and Fiats with few Honda Civics and almost no Toyota Corollas.

    Price of gasoline is U$1 for a liter. They don't sell per gallon. People buy smaller and smaller cars because they can not afford price of fuel. They pay very high taxes on fuel. They look to buy diesel powered vehicles.

    Upon arrival back in New York, I saw gas went up here. I won't complain, I can still afford it, life is better here, G'd bless America. Missed my Sable with all its faults.

    Have a good Labor Day everyone!
  • upsetter1upsetter1 Posts: 205
    I find outside mirror on all Tauruses, older and new generation, not much functional and sometimes it causes problems. But you get used and get some feeling whats going on somehow mysteriously.

    On my old Toyota from 80s mirrors were much better. BTW on the new Malibu mirrors are even worse, basically they are useless. Or may be you have to get used over the time.
  • are not that expensive, especially if you go aftermarket. For a little under $150, I bought Raybestos rotors, pads, and 2 quarts of brake fluid. It took me about 3 hours from start to finish to do the brakes on my '99 SE (flushing the brake lines takes a little time even with a MityVac).
  • BTW I could suggest everyone to change brake fluid every two years. With ABS it may be tricky, but still worth to do. Dealer asks about $190 though. You can do it youself but need another person to operate brake pedal.
  • ohio7ohio7 Posts: 67
    I'm just sitting here at work reading the conversations about outside mirrors. Just what exactly is the problem with them. Mine do exactly what I expect them to do - show me who's behind and to each side of me. Mine are both easily adjusted be the switch on the door which is a far sight better than either Mustang I had. If they were as big as an SUV they would look out of sync with the size of the car and, as a designer, THAT would bother me.

    So, what is the "problem" that you guys are having?
  • fdthirdfdthird Posts: 352
    ohio7,

    I agree!
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    I don't have problems with mirror size.

    Most people don't adjust their driver's side outside mirror properly anyway. To cover your blind spot, you should have it set so you cannot see down the side of your car. Set it so just as a passing car leaves your inside rear view mirror field of view, it shows up in your driver's side mirror. Then as it leaves your driver's side mirror, you begin to pick it up in your peripheral vision. This eliminates your blind spot. It takes a little getting used to, but is a much better use of your mirror.

    The right side mirror this is not necessary as the wide angle mirror covers more of the road, of course at the same time distorting the distance the car in the mirror is from your car.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Drive a Toyota Camry and then a Taurus and you'll understand everything!

    Taurus has the smallest outside mirrors among family sedans. We're not talking SUV size, but just a little bigger. Most people do not use the mirrors too much anyway, but in some conditions, especially while backing up, larger outside mirrors are not only useful - but it's safer, too!

    Again, I've driven already the Impala, Camry, and others. There is a big different. Once you get used to a bigger size, it's hard to get re-used to a smaller size.

    And that's not just with the Taurus. Ford Focus has much smaller mirrors than Corolla or Civic, and the Windstar's much smaller than the NEW 2004 Sienna, GM minivans, Honda Odyssey & Mazda MPV - and it also has the biggest blind spot from all - except for Chrysler/Dodge minivans which are even worse.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    Well, if they are too small for you, then I guess you should cross Taurus off your list, as I don't think they will be changed soon, if ever.
  • I have previously owned a Chrysler product (poor choice) currently have a GP and a Taurus, the mirror size on these vehicles is of no concern to me.
    First service dept. experience with the Taurus yesterday. 5000km first service and they repaired a scratch on the trunk cover (my fault) work was top class, done when promised, and no charge for the scratch repair. The Ford service dept. equals that of the GM dealer I use and is much better than the disaster I encountered when I had the Chrysler product.
  • ohio7ohio7 Posts: 67
    I beg to differ with you about no one using the side mirrors - I use them constantly! In fact I'm so used to using the right one that when I drive my antique car I go nuts looking over there and seeing nothing. Since it's a convertible (and the top is always down) it's just as easy to turn my head to make sure some bozo isn't gasing up when I put my signal on to move right.

    If one follows the procedures that bagerfan laid out you will have no trouble using any mirror. Exactly how much of a vehicle do you need to see to realize that something is next to you?! If I catch ANY car part in my mirrors it's a pretty good sign that it's not safe for me to move over. I really don't need to know what make or model a vehicle is.

    There is a proper procedure for setting the right mirror that bagerfan left out. It has a little discomfort involved in the procedure. I've read that one should sit in the middle area and move the mirror so that you see a little of the side of the car. When you move back into the driver's seat, you won't see the car but your blind spot will be covered. This saved me just a few weeks ago - I was on I-95 and zooming along and wanted to move to the right to get around a left lane hogger doing 50. I did a partial glance to the right and didn't see anything. In that split second of me starting to move over I caught sight of something red. WOW, I almost plowed into a new red Corvette!! He was zooming very fast and was not there when I first looked. Glad I caught him in my itty bitty side mirror!
  • fdthirdfdthird Posts: 352
    Are we all so un-flexable that we can not get use to driving a car with different sized mirrors??? Come on.

    My wife had a Toyota Van, then a 87 Ford custom E-150, then a 97 Custom Hi-Top E-150. All three of them had huge mirrors. Now she's got a 2001 Taurus SEL. Yea sure, the mirrors are smaller, but so is the vehicle! Our other family cars are a 2000 Mustang convertible, a 2001 Focus SE sedan, and an 85 Mercury Marquis 4 door sedan and they've all got different sized mirrors. You switch off cars you re-adjust yourself to lots of things...the way you sit in the car, the way the wheel feels, the different "blind spots" you need to remember, and the different shape, size and placement of mirrors!

    Isn't this really getting a bit picky??? I mean what do we have here...mirror envy??? As bagerfan said, if the mirrors are too small for you, don't buy a Taurus.

    See ya
  • ohio7ohio7 Posts: 67
    You said it well!!
  • I personally think there's no point to debating about how much to pay for a car and why pay more for the same features etc. Personally, we went from Fords (several) to our first Toyota Camry from the bad experiences. Perhaps that will change over the next few years as Detroit fights back, BUT IT WILL TAKE A FEW YEARS for the public to learn. So we didn't mind paying an extra $7K. Further if it doesn't make sense to pay more for an import then sooner or later you should see it in the sales numbers. If you don't then the argument is lost.

    Anyway I didn't mean to get off on this topic , but I just wanted to reiterate that the resale value of a car is part of your net worth whether it depreciates faster or not. Net worth is based on a liquidation whether it is moot or not.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Interesting to read your responses, guys!

    I don't have a sedan and don't plan to buy one, as I need a minivan for my family.

    I just asked why the Taurus doesn't try to copy the competitors. True, it's not VERY important, and we are flexible enough to get used to everything, even to go trough a blackout for almost 24 hours :-)

    It's just a personal taste that I like large outside mirrors, not only to realize that 'something' is behind me; but to have a great view from the rear.

    When the new Sienna from Toyota appeared, many people were very excited about the large mirrors. And so was the new Nissan Quest. One of the complaints I read somewhere about the Chrysler Town & Country was: small outside mirrors! actually, smallest in class.
  • fdthirdfdthird Posts: 352
    "When the new Sienna from Toyota appeared, many people were very excited about the large mirrors."

    I guess I am just getting too old. I am still around from the days when we got excited about horsepower, or colors, or big wheels, or the look the girls on the corner would give when your car drove by. Now they get excited by large mirrors, huh?

    Damn...look at the fool I was when I got excited when I took delivery of my Red Mustang Convertible! What an [non-permissible content removed] I am.

    Sorry for showing my age...now I know why all these 20 year olds are driving SUVs and I'm driving a Mustang!
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