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Mercury Sable Problems



  • greg32greg32 Posts: 48
    I had the safety recall done and the intake gaskets replaced and sealed within one day. The actual work I think took about 3 hours based on phone calls I made to them during the day. The dealer also has a shuttle service that took me to work in the morning and picked me up in the afternoon. All in all a pretty good experience. The dealer was King Lincoln-Mercury in Gaithersburg, MD. Not all service departments are bad.

    Good luck.
  • danielj6danielj6 Posts: 285
    Yesterday March 22 I received my recall notice from Ford. Today I went to a Ford svce dept near my job, and they told me that they hadn't received anything from the factory about the recall. To call in two weeks. But excuse me this is a safety recall I replied. The svce advisor goes back inside for the second time and tells me to call back next Thursday.

    So now my choices are: (a)call another Ford, Lincoln/ Mercury
    svce dept or (b) Ford directly. Why are sending recall
    notifications if they didn't inform some dealers
    and/or they didn't yet ship parts?

    Should've bought some other brand of car.
  • ljdljd Posts: 1
    I just wanted to add to harmar's message #172.

    I recently traded in a 1994 Mercury Cougar that I had purchased new. That generation of Cougars and T-Birds (the last of the rear drive ones) were notorious for front brake rotor warping! Mine were defective from the factory, and for the first several years, I had to get the front rotors turned (machined) every 8,000. That of course, led to more frequent replacement. When the "Anniversary" editions came out in 1997 (to mark the demise of the RWD Cougar and T-Bird) they offered 16" wheels, and LARGER FRONT BRAKE ROTORS. Unfortunately, these larger rotors can't fit on a car with 15" wheels. I think V8 Cougars/T-Birds had 16" rims standard by the model's end run.

    Interestingly enough, my then local L-M dealer was using a new (1997) method of machining the rotors while they were still on the car! This seemed to help, and I drove over 20,000 miles without having to deal with the rotors again. You might want to inquire about that technique.

    Hopefully, my new Sable won't have these sorts of problems!
  • harmarharmar Posts: 94
    My brother just informed me that his '94 Taurus has repeated front rotor warping. He long ago found a place that warrants its work for a time longer than it takes his to warp! Thus, he gets free service on them when they do warp. I'll find out where he gets this service and post the info. Perhaps it's a facility with national branches.
  • harmarharmar Posts: 94
    Sorry to report that the shop doing my brother's brakes is a local gas station. The owner has almost given up turning rotors, because he finds many models suffering the same warping. Instead, he replaces the rotors, then returns them to the suppliers if/when they warp. This seems to be the way many products are going now. It's cheaper to replace, not repair, a microwave oven and use the old one as a boat anchor. Boo! Hiss!
  • car has just 65000 miles and it appears that the
    transmission is shot (according to a number of
    shops) .. haven't had the dealer look at it yet.
    Is Ford or Mercury helping with this problem, which I understand is a very common one? Is there a good 800 # I should calling to find out?
  • harmarharmar Posts: 94
    The only comprehensive online spot I know to suggest you look is:
    The author has tons of info, suggestions, etc. You might also try the NHTSA Web Site. Also, read prior Edmund's posts for both Sable and Taurus. Good luck!
  • ryan1234ryan1234 Posts: 3
    Has anyone had problems with the cover becoming unlatched, and snapping/spooling/rolling up? I can see that the problem is that the cargo cover, when extended, needs to be centered so the rather lame latching posts can rest with enough restraint in the holes that are availble. Somehow, like a window shade that has rolled to one side, the cover shifted, so one side is firmly connecte, and on the other side, the post barely extends into the "hole" or indentation for it. Any suggestions?
  • ryan1234ryan1234 Posts: 3
    Had warranty service do the work, the b-pillar (post betwen front & rear window)and c-pillar (behind rear door) plastic moldings inside the car were very loose. I didn't even notice until a back seat pasenger told me. The clips werent doing the job and they had to replace.
  • ryan1234ryan1234 Posts: 3
    I have this noise on my '96 LS Sedan. It only occurs in the summer, usually when the air is on, and around 60+ mph. I have assumed it has to do with thermal expansion and an unfortunate case where a resonance dependent on those particular conditions (temp./expansion and therefore spacing between two structures somewhere in the dash; and frequency based on road vib. at 60+ mph) is occurring and causing that annoying hum. Have not found a way to fix.
  • prestoneprestone Posts: 13
    Greetings all,

    I had an appointment Monday morning (April 2nd) to have the corrective work done regarding safety recall # 01S08. I dropped my Sable off expecting the work to take several hours. Within 15 minutes of arriving at the office, I received a call from my service manager informing me that the work was complete! Needless to say, I was pleased. I only wish he'd informed me that it would only take 15 minutes to perform the correction!

    Glad to have the problem corrected now. Fortunately, my Sable never exhibited any of the problems (outlined in the safety recall) before I had the corrective work carried out.

    I'm still enjoying the car in spite of the two problems (incorrectly installed power steering hose and this safety recall) I've experienced in the seven months since I began the lease. Hopefully this will be it. We'll see.
  • To pcarroll1
    My 1996 Sable AS had the same exact problem as yours. The front windshield must be removed and re installed. Something the windshield sits on is defective. I argued for months before it was corrected. It has been fine for 4 years now. The cars runs great.
  • 427435427435 Posts: 86
    I've had some luck when dealing with warped brake rotors by having them turned as soon as they first show signs of warping. The castings will often take a set (warp) after they've gotten hot a few times and then not warp farther after being turned flat again. This is more likely to solve the problem then just buying new ones which will only take their own set after a few heating and cooling cycles.

    However, lot's of hard braking will warp most rotors today, unfortunately, due to cheap light weight rotors. I have an old 1967 Corvette that has never needed rotors turned or replaced despite lots of hard stops from triple digit speeds.
  • ezaircon4jcezaircon4jc Posts: 793
    If you're talking about that high pitched whistle, my dealer just ran a bead of silicone under the molding on either side of the windshield and whine/whistle gone!
  • danielj6danielj6 Posts: 285
    Today I took my Merc. Sable to a Linc-Merc dealer
    and had the fix done. I had made an appt. and
    today the svce dept people were expecting me. Dropped the car at 7:30 in the morning and picked it up at 1:45.

    After leaving the car I had to go thorough a lot
    full of Lincs and Mercs to get to the street, and two 2001 Mountaneer SUV's were calling me. Very tempting indeed.
  • danielj6danielj6 Posts: 285
    Yesterday I got a call from the Linc-Merc where
    my car had the repair. They
    wanted to know in a scale of 1 to 5 how I'd rate
    my experience with the svce.dept. They later
    mentioned that I will be getting a questioneer
    from Ford regarding the service experience.

    I found this call quite interesting because I purchased my Merc Sable there and had a bad
    experience (sales and service). I wrote a very
    strong letter to Ford last year and followed it up
    with a phone call. I'd like to believe that Ford
    actually handled the situation with the dealer.
    I'll never know what really happened.

    While my car was getting fixed I tried to buy to
    windshield wiper inserts for front windows but the
    parts dept at the dealership said that they don't sell inserts but the wipers with inserts because
    they provide a better swipe. I'm not complaining about the cost ($21.54 I/tax) but is this true?
  • harmarharmar Posts: 94
    Unless the tension mechanism on the arm is "gone," why would putting in only inserts not be fine? I've never changed the complete arm. Auto Zone sells inserts for around $6 each. K-Mart sometimes has the correct length for less. I change 'em twice a year and have never had a problem. If the car isn't garaged and sits in the sun, that might deteriorate 'em faster, but twice a year has worked well for me.
  • danielj6danielj6 Posts: 285
    No big deal really! I may've overpaid $9 between
    the inserts and the arms with the inserts. Just
    curious. The reality is that my car spends most of its time outside but the tension on the arms did not appear to change.
  • tomo66tomo66 Posts: 4
    My '93 Sable 3.8l is doing 12 miles/gal maximum (city driving)and 18 on the highway.
    Although, I've done tune-up and computer diagnostic, nothing have changed that. I don't know what else to do. Did anybody try different approach to correct fuel consumption?
  • So you finish up work on a Sat evening and go out to your trusty Sable-- beautiful night-- you're the only car in a large open parking lot -- good ol' Sable fires right up (just like it did an hour ago when you drove to get a soda)-- you turn on the CD, open the moonroof, pop the emergency brake, and take the car out of Park... i said take the car out of Park... I SAID try to GET YOUR CAR OUT OF PARK...
    So you turn it off, figure musta been something with the ignition lock or just a temporary case of 'bad carma' (sorry)-- so you go through the steps again-- fires right up, CD is on, moonroof open, seatbelt on, and take the car out of .... grrrr... out of.... grrrrrr... out of--
    so you slowly come to the conclusion you are stuck in Park--

    So the question is: do you know what was wrong? The answer is important, because it could happen to you--

    I'll share part of my answer that night-- but there is a much better one-- My answer involved calling Ford Roadside assistance from my car-- the person had never heard of the problem-- i asked him to go through the archives-- he did, and said there was no information on such a problem, and the best he could do was send a tow truck to have my car towed to the dealer-- althought the towtruck driver turned out to be a good guy, and kept me company while i waited at the dealership for an hour for a taxi ($40) to take me to the airport to get a rental car ($150) until Monday when the car could be looked at--

    My question is: what disabled the Sable? I will give the correct diagnosis and treatment later--
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    With most newer vehicles, when the engine's running the shifter can't be moved out of Park unless the brake pedal's depressed. This closes a brake pedal activated switch which energizes a solenoid on the shifter linkage. The problem is likely the switch out of adjustment, a defective Park interlock solenoid, or an open circuit in the associated wiring.
  • A good guess and it might be another possible cause for a`case of Acute Sable Parkritis (ASP)-- that left this poor guy in a parking lot with a his Sable unable, hopelessly yanking on his gearshift (so to speak), while Roadside Assistance was justa flappin in the wind--

    Any other ideas? Any other owners have ASP and find treatment or cure?
  • slzslz Posts: 10
    I don't know if the 2000 Sable has the adjustable brake pedal but in the 2001 Sable the brake pedal is adjustable and there is a recall out for it. Supposedly, there is too much grease around the switch in some cars (or something like that) which can intefere with it detecting if the brake is depressed. I believe the recall said that it is possible that one of the side effects of this would be not being able to get the car out of park. So, this is my guess....
  • prestoneprestone Posts: 13
    Greetings Drstevenj,

    SLZ (both 2000 & 2001's have the adjustable pedals) hit the nail on the head concerning the safey recall and your Sable's gearshift not moving at all. In my original post (#179) I placed the entire safety recall notice 01S08 which concerned the adjustable brakes. I've cut and pasted it below for you. One of the problems outlined is "Cannot shift the vehicle out of "Park." This is most likely the problem that is affecting your 2000 Sable. Please see below. Hopefully your Mercury dealer will correct the problem for you as soon as possible.

    Hi all,
    Just received a safety recall notice (01S08) today in the mail from Mercury. It deals with both 2000 & 2001 Sables and Taurus's that have the power adjustable pedals.
    "Grease used on the adjustable pedal assembly may enter the brake lamp switch and contaminate the contacts. This may cause one or more of the following symptoms to occur:
    -Brake lights stay illuminated or are inoperative.
    -Shift Interlock disabled (will be able to shift out of "Park" position without depressing the brakes.
    -Speed Control will not activate.
    -Cannot shift the vehicle out of "Park."
    -ABS Warning light illuminates on vehicles with ABS
    -Battery Discharged"
    The recall stated to call the dealer for an appointment without delay. I called ahead and the parts department did not have the parts in stock as they had not yet received notification from Ford. The Parts Manager stated that he should have parts within 3-4 business days.
    Thought all you 2000 & 2001 Sable & Taurus owners with adjustable pedals should know about this safety recall.
  • drstevenjdrstevenj Posts: 9
    Thanks for your ideas! I think you all are correct that the car can stick in Park for a number of reasons related to braking/electrical problems--

    I just had the recall done to the adjustable brake pedal a week before-- and the problem was that there was a shorted brake lamp that blew a brake lamp fuse-- the dealer replaced the bulb, the fuse, and the same switch that had been replaced in the recall (I wonder whether it was a shorted lamp that caused the switch to fail, or a defective switch that caused the bulb to short)-- the dealer (there is one person in service who I won't work with any more by my request, and the other two service managers who are outstanding, in my opinion) made the repair at no charge-- much appreciated...

    Hers the rest of the story-- and the take home message--

    I called Roadside Assistance on Sunday morning (remember, I was stuck on Sat night and the Roadside Representative had never heard of the problem), figuring that the Sat nit people might have less experience (usually ewer employees get stuck working the Sat evening shifts-- always was that way in settings where I have worked)-- the Re on Sunday said he had dealt with this many times, that it was probably brake/electrical related and MOST IMPORTANTLY-- HE TOLD ME WHAT TO DO TO GET THE CAR OUT OF PARK-- you press the emergency brake and the brake pedal at the same time, put the key in the ignition, turn it either one or two notches (try both-- for me it was 1/2 a notch!) and the car will come out of Park and you can drive it (it will lock back in Park each time you shift to Park-- but the procedure will get you out and let you navigate to the nearest gas station or to the dealer). When i looked over the owners manual, the procedure is sort of described in a small paragraph-- so suggest YOU GO OVER IT-- 'the shifter you save, may be your own....' (sic...)

    I did ask to speak to a Roadside Assistance Rep's supervisor, and complimented the person Sunday morning and expressed my concern about not receiving the info on Sat-- the supervisor said he would talk with the Sat person-- i said that was good, but i thought that Roadside Assistance should accept partial responsibility for my expense for the taxi and the rental-- they said to take it up with my dealer-- so i asked for the supervisor's supervisor in case i needed to call back...

    my dealer was great (which he has been since we have established a rapport over the first year) i gave him copies of the receipts, and a detailed description of the situation (i had the names and extensions of all the people i had spoken with), and they cut me a check in less than a week--

    So anyway that's the story, and i hope that it will help people to review the 'outa park' procedure, and save others an inconvenience.

    Take care amigo/as,
  • harmarharmar Posts: 94
    This type of info is precisely why I visit this site! Hardly a day goes by that I don't learn something new from someone here.

    While I have the "stump" - Sable owners seem to a "kinder, gentler" breed. None of the flaming I see on some other brands' pages goes on here. Congratulations! Sooner or later we're all likely to need a dollop of assistance. It's a pleasure to surf and learn here.
  • danielj6danielj6 Posts: 285
    My Merc Sable SW gas mileage is getting better
    and better. Just as the price of gas is getting
    more and more like highway robbery or high sea
    piracy if you will.

    I had the recall fix done about a month ago. The
    SW feels solid, handles great, is comfortable and
    roomy. I still don't know however where the switch
    for the back window washer is located. I filled the reservoir but can't use it. I posed the question to the Taurus/Sable SW's thread but no one answered. I'm a little embarrassed to ask this
    question but I need to know.
  • shank6shank6 Posts: 64
    with our 2000 Sable Premium LS. It rides so much better than our 99 Taurus SE. The sound systems seems better, and none of the nagging problems that I've experienced with the Ford,(knock on wood). It sounds crazy but it seems there is so much more attention to detail paid with the Mercury.
  • drstevenjdrstevenj Posts: 9
    Appreciate your message-- I enjoy this list too as a place to exchange ideas and learn--
    I did go in today to schedule appointment to have the light switch recall done-- told the service manager how pleased I am with the way he has taken care of the Sable-- told him that I would buy another Sable from him in a heartbeat-- then couldn't resist, and said, I may need to buy another one today, to use as a backup when this one gets stuck in Park.... he said they may not let me buy another Sable-- I told him I will work on my sense of humor-- he said I'm on probation--

    Seriously, I have been satisfied with the service and the personal touch they have extended at the dealership-- I probably will buy another Sable (I bought it for the car seat and the adjustable pedals-- was the most comfortable driving position i have found in a car-- much more comfortable seat and pedal placement than the Volvo-- the gas pedal placement toward the center of the floorboard causes right foot and leg numbness on long drives-- and pressure on the sciatic-- happens in alota foriegn cars-- any way it didn't on the Sable for me)-- so will probably buy another one in a year-- the service manager did say they may be willing to help me buy another Volvo instead-- depending on my behavior.
    Take car(e),
  • harmarharmar Posts: 94
    I had lunch with my best friend today. He's a retired Ford engineer. He's in the market for a new Grand Marquis. During our conversation, he told me Ford now allows employees (and retired employees) to give a "Ford Friends & Neighbors" certificate to "friends and neighbors." This will get them the same deal employees get: dealer cost. So if you know anyone who works for Ford, ask about it. Also, I understand Ford may be cutting off special orders in a couple of weeks, so act quickly if you're interested.

    Now - re: the Volvo. A buddy used to own one. At the time, Volvo. was playing up in its ads how long its cars were lasting on the road. My buddy said that was because after five years, every darned part in the car had required replacement!

This discussion has been closed.