95 contour bad buy here

standingbearstandingbear Member Posts: 1
edited April 2014 in Ford
i bought a contour-had low miles.200 miles later, the tie rod ends failed(not covered)car shakes bad at idle and runs at almost redline temp at normal driving.when accelerating, the engine noise is terrible-sounds like its made out of tin.my other car was a ford escort-a 93- that i sold. it had 258,000 miles on it with me replacing only the struts and the wheel bearings once in the entire time i owned it since new.repairman for contour told me the 4 cyl. engine is known for vibrations and is a bit too small for the car.shelled out 1200 bucks and fixed it then sold it for 5k.i will not be getting any more of these contours.they are scrap in my opinion.why must fords cars be a hit/miss on their quality?


  • tboner1965tboner1965 Member Posts: 647
    Let's see,

    You buy a six year old used car and it is Fords fault.

    I'll agree the 4 cyl has a quite a bit of vibration with an automatic in gear while stopped.

    The temp gauge is a known issue. The gauge reads fine, but if you put the computer on it and watch the temperature, you would have noticed that it runs just around 200 degrees, sometimes a bit above and others a bit below. The owners manual clearly stated (because I got nervous when my 96 GL 4cyl ATX did this) that as long as the needle is in the NORMAL range, the temp is ok.

    It is hard to blame Ford for worn suspension components on a 6 year old car. If it had low miles after 6 years, then it was probably driven around town in short trips. Most agree this is the hardest type of driving on a car.

    I do wish you well, but I think you are being a little hard on Ford.

    But then again, I really love my Contour, so you know where my bias is.

    Tony [non-permissible content removed]
    98 E0 SVT Contour
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I will agree with the last poster, that on a used car worn tie rods would be quite normal wear and tear. As for the temperature issue, I always tell people that as long as you don't lose coolant the car is fine. Just keep an eye on the gauge and if you go into the red, it's time to check the gauge's accuracy or look for a problem.

    Most new cars run hot. In fact, the gauge's red zone is not usually 212 degrees...most modern cooling systems run at 230 or higher, since the water is under pressure and therefore does not boil over at 212 as it would in normal atmosphere.
  • adc100adc100 Member Posts: 1,521
    I am usually impressed by your common sense approach and general auto knowledge. I am a little curious as to where you get the 230 degrees from. You said the gauge is 212 for the red zone- I can buy that. Thermostats I believe are generally 195 degrees. I have measured metal temperatures at the thermostat and have found they are approximately 180 to 190 degrees which says the temp out of the engine is a bit higher, probably in the vicinity of 190 to 200 degrees. Granted - cylinder wall temps are probably higher, but bulk coolant temp probably is about thermostat setting.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Yes, the thermostat opens at that temperature but don't confuse it with a thermostat in your house. The thermostat in a car does not CONTROL the temperature. Ther reason the coolant is pressurized is to raise the boiling point of water. If you released the pressure on your car's cooling system, it would boil sooner than if it were pressurized. This is why old fashioned cars used to overheat more, many of them ran atmospheric presssure in the cooling system and the water would boil off.

    So modern cars can run 230 coolant temperatures...they don't put that on the gauges because people would freak out if they saw that. It's actually very good for an engine to run hot, within reason, of course. Let's see...if I remember, one pound of pressure raises the boiling point 2 degrees...have I got that right, guys? So a 14 lb cap gives you 212 +28 or 236.

    I'm not saying that all modern engines normally run that high, but they can and will without adverse affect. This is what they are designed to do. Also, keep in mind that your external thermostat housing is usually near the cooling fan, so this won't reflect water jacket temperatures.

    One thing I don't know is whether the temperature sensor for the gauge is actually measuring temperature at the hottest possible point or not.
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