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Ford Taurus/Mercury Sable Sedans Pre-2008



  • hi, my friend that i go to high school woth has a 2001 mercury sable ls premium with 16 thousand miles and when he drives sometimes white smoke comes out from the muffer. i know that this is not normal and he took it to one dealer and they said that it was the transmission but then he took it to another dealer and they said that it was something that has to do with the head gasket. so my question is that do you guys know what could be the problem?
  • 427435427435 Posts: 86
    dtownfb: In my case with the Topaz, the brakes get very light usage. I drive 65 miles to work on divided 4 lane---first set of brakes pads lasted 165,000 miles.Pulsing started way before the brake pads wore out.

    That's why I think alot of the problem is the brake caliper assembly not releasing because of a piston on one side only. That and cheap-[non-permissible content removed] rotors.
  • I have just read the posts on the concerns with valve clatter with the 2000 Ford Taurus with FFV engine. Interestingly, as I am writing this mail I have my car in for service and one of the issues I want remedied is severe valve clatter under acceleration or load.

    I have been to two Ford dealers with this issue and the first dealer retarded the timing of the engine by 3 degrees and blamed the gas that is used in the southern US states. There was no improvement to the clatter and the only thing that gives an improvement is higher octane fuel.

    After reading the posts in this forum today and since my car is currently in for service with the clatter being an issue that is to be resolved, I called the manager of my local Ford service department and the following is a summary of the discussion.....

    -As regards ford recall, #00E10 AUG 00 Recall - Fuel Delivery Module Replacement. A: This is simply the replacement of the fuel pump which was done on my car in April this year. (This had no effect on the clatter).

    -So what are they doing to resolve the clatter this time? A: They are reprogramming the engine processor and also decarbonating the engine.

    -Will this problem be a recurring issue with my car? A: Yes it likely will as the clatter is mainly due to the composition of the fuels in the local states (Texas in my case).

    -Who has to take responsibility for this issue once the guarantee period is out? A: You (the customer) do. You will need to have the engine decarbonated periodically (every 25k to 30k miles) and this will cost 60 to 70$ each time.

    -So, if Ford do not consider this issue their responsibility then why are you reprogramming the processor and decarbonating the engine now? A: Well, Sir, this is because we are trying to help you out and since your car is only one year old.

    -I forgot to ask why did they make the recall
    #00E10 then?

    -They also added that this issue of valve clatter has not only been seen with the Ford Taurus FFV, but with other Ford vehicles, e.g. Explorer and Mustang and they insist that this is an issue with the fuel compositions in the loacal area.

    Anyway, take their answers as you will, but I certainly didn't expect to hear anything else. Ford is hurting as it is with the Firestone tyre situation.
  • mrdetailermrdetailer Posts: 1,118
    usually means excess water is getting into the engine. Most likely source head gaskets.
  • mrl1mrl1 Posts: 2
    Mclarenr,,,I found your post very interesting. I am surprised your dealer has been that upfront with you since 2 dealerships told me this pinging is normal. By the way, I have the standard 3.0 Vulcan, not the FFV engine. We must have the same fuel in Pennsylvania as you do in Texas.

    The "Decarbonating" will NOT last 25-30K. Mine helped for one week. Running 94 Octane seems to help for awhile also. Not sure why, unless it has some cylinder "decarbonizing" effect since I have been told the higher rating fuels use more ethanol. I heard ethanol causes damage to fuel injection parts after long term use though.
    I have asked for a letter stating that Ford agree to fix any ring/piston problem that may occur for as long as I own the car since this is "normal". They have not responded yet.
  • mrl1, the two dealers weren't as upfront as it seems from my summary in my posting, but they infact made those statements after a deal of persistent questioning from me. In fact the second dealer (where my car is being serviced now) originally only said that they had reprogrammed the PCM and it was only through calling a second person at the dealer that the fact that they had decarbonated the engine emerged after I started pushing the issue about pinging being a known problem with the Vulcan engine.

    The first dealer who retarted the timing by 3 degrees to counteract the pinging said, as you have been told, that some pinging is normal. I have owned a wide range of cars and know when there is an abnormal degree of pinging and that would apply to my Taurus at the present time.

    One issue in my favour is that it is at least pretty flat here in Texas. When I took the car for a drive in a hilly part of Oklahoma I thought that the engine was going to burn out!

    I am not sure why, but I also get a significant improvement if I use 89 octane instead of 87. I My explanation for this is that it enrichens the fuel/air mixture so that it combusts less explosively with the side effect being less complete combustion so that an increase in carbon deposits will occur...but, not completely sure. I have not been prepared to go as far as 94 octane gas because of the price premium and fear of risking damage to the engine, although I have no knowledge indicating that that may occur. I can also say that Chevron regular causes less pinging than Exxon regular, so fuel types do come into it.

    I think that you shouldn't hold your breath waiting for that letter. Look at the wrangle that occured in the Firestone affair and the pinging certainly isn't life threatening. The only thing that will get the giant to budge is if there is a sufficiently good marketing case in initiating a recall or better said that there is sufficient reason to believe that not intitiating a recall would lead to a significant and negative marketing impact.

    From our mail exchange in this forum it has become apparent that we (two Ford customers) are not being told the same story by Ford regarding this particular issue. Well, the issue hasn't perhaps become significant enough for a company directive to be issued that ensures that all dealerships are on the same page as to how to BS the clientelle in this matter.
  • I also have a 2000 Taurus with a 3.0 engine pinging problem. it started pinging about a year ago around 13K and I've been running 89 octane since to minimize the ping. within the past month it has started to ping even on 89. I live in the DC area where it's fairly flat and it's starting to ping nearly all the time. it's been to the dealer several times and they have taken the same actions, reprogramming, decarb, and even tried changing the fuel filter. at this point they are quoting the owners manual and saying that some light knocking (pinging) is normal and will not damage the engine. I'm not sure how they determine light and heavy ping. The dealer is being sympathic, but at this point doing nothing to fix my problem. they don't recommend using 94 since it burns cooler and can increase carbon build up. I've asked them to check with the tech rep and see about lowering the octane rating in the PCM programming. thanks for posting your problems, it's nice to know that I'm not alone.
  • Well, I got my car back from the service dept. at the local dealer yesterday and asked in more detail exactly what they have done about the pinging and the following is a quoted directly from the labour report sheet:


    According to the service engineer Ford periodically release and install new 'firmware' if you will for the PCM. Interestingly they appear to have performed the octane rating adjustment that you mention when they reprogrammed the PCM.

    Well, the car is now very smooth and clatter free, but let's see how long it will remain so. Ford themselves did warn me that this will likely be a recurring issue and I will need to get the engine decarbonised regularly. If that becomes the case then I consider it unacceptable to load the customer with that responsibility and that Ford should definately address the issue in a more serious and responsive manner.

    I'll let the forum know how it goes.
  • obiggsobiggs Posts: 33
    You the man! I installed it in 10 min. Thanks Pat
  • We purchased a new 2001 Sable LS this past weekend. I was reading about problems with warped rotors on the Taurus. I noticed that the Sable has slotted front rotors (according to the documentation provided by the dealership). I was wondering if other Sable owners had noticed a similar pattern, or does this primarily appear in the Taurus. THANKS!
  • 427435427435 Posts: 86
    I watch the Crown Vic and Grand Marquis board also. Guess what---owners of these cars (2000 and 2001)seem to be having the same problems. Wonder if it will take Ford Motor Company as long to admitt to the problem and get a fix in place as they did on the plastic manifolds for the 4.6 V-8.
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    3L motors seem to have a known pinging problem over the last 10 or so years, per the discussions on

    And only higher octane gas helps.

    So, don't expect Ford to engineer this problem out of their motors.
  • eng6ineeng6ine Posts: 29
    Do the people that are having this problem with pinging have the 3.0L 12V Vulcan engine or the 3.0L 24V DOHC Duratec engine?
  • The Duratech doesn't ping - - - it screams! :-)
  • frank58frank58 Posts: 54
    I have a sable wagon with the 3.0 engine. It has been great the car is a 96 and pinging has not been an issue.
    The octane I use is 87, I am located in the Boston Ma area.
  • Could somebody recommend to me a good aftermarket rotors(brands and sources) and front pads?
  • I've had good service with NAPA rotors and pads. IIRC, the "lifetime" made in America rotors are about $75 each and their "lifetime" carbon pads, less than $100. The imported from China rotors are $40ish each and their less expensive pads, around $35. This is in the southern part of The Peoples Republic of California.
  • seeligseelig Posts: 590
    my kid wants to buy a Sable, it's a '96 with 90K mi. 6cyl., 4 door. it was a government car and they are asking $4,000 for it. i am told that it was kept up maintenance wise, but i'm totally lost when it comes to what the car might be worth. any help would sure make me happy....
  • Having driven a few "G" cars, I would go over it with a very fine tooth comb. Edmunds should be able to give you an idea of the value. Some of my fellow gummint employees don't respect "G" cars very much.
  • I have a 2000 Mercury Sable LS 3.0 24 valve engine and lately I have been having problems at
    times when starting the engine. When the car is
    started it is like the engine is flooded and then
    will start. Is anyone else experiencing this problem. I am taking my car to the dealer tomorrow to see if they can figure it out. Please
    let me know if ya'll have had this problem either
    with the Sable or the Taurus. Thanks
  • My ford taurus is a piece of junk. I will NEVER buy a ford again. The head gasket went at 75000. The AC went at 45000. The breaks have not been working properly for the last 30000 miles. The car overall has been the worst I have ever had.
  • seeligseelig Posts: 590
    what year is your taurus?
    my 92 cougar had the same problems and then some, which is the last time i ever looked at fords (merks).
    the reason i'm checking this thread, is because i posted a question as to the value of a '96 sable w/90K miles. doesn't look like these cars are very popular at all though.
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    I took an appointment from my local dealer for tranny flash and also asked them whether filter needs to be replaced. They said filter is not replacable on 2000 models, flash will clean up the filter too. I was wondering you guys have some experience on tranny service on 2000 Taurus.
    Any input will be appreciated.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Posts: 2,918
    has anyone tried changing the Oxygen sensor to solve the pinging problems? It might be worth a shot.
  • canadatwocanadatwo Posts: 198
    how does the optional traction control work on the new style Taurus?

    Does it use the brakes, engine, or something in the axle?

    does it really make a difference in the snow/ice?
  • mrl11777mrl11777 Posts: 154
    ... utilizes the ABS. Seems to work -- it is very hard to force a wheel to spin.
  • fdthirdfdthird Posts: 352
    shuts down the engine, applies the brake, all of the above.
  • If you're like me and used to driving on snow/ice, it is a little unnerving at first because it feels like you have lost power. In Minnesota, you get pretty used to wheel spin in the winter and how to "play" it with the accelerator. So, when it doesn't happen the way you expect, you find yourself momentarily asking "what's wrong?". But, on balance, it probably does more good than harm and is a reasonable option once you get used to it.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    car mfrs put traction control on a car, but still leave crappy tires on the car. In the end, all the traction control does is make up for the fact that the car has **** for tires.
  • fdthirdfdthird Posts: 352
    In our family we have a 2000 Mustang V/6 convertible and a 2001 Taurus SEL, both with traction control. We live on Long Island and so are not really in "snow country". The Mustang has Eagle GAs and even with the trac control is useless in the snow. The Taurus has Continentals and although we got it late last winter and didn't get too much snow time, the front wheel drive with the traction control make for a much better trip in the snow.

    If I lived in snow country I'd consider a good set of winter tires on the Mustang (or leave it in the garage) and might also for the Taurus.
This discussion has been closed.