2003 Windstar still smoking after new motor

Tiny
PAMMYK
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 ALL OTHER MAKES ALL OTHER MODELS
I posted the other day about my car smoking out of the tail pipe. We were advised to replace the engine, and before getting a second opinion, (stupid) we agreed to have the engine replaced. After we brought it home, we found out the next morning that it still had the problem we originally took it to the dealer for. The car is a v6 with less than 50,000 miles, it ran great, and none of my trouble lights ever showed up. We have spent a huge amount of money and still have clouds of white smoke coming out of the tailpipe when we start the car in the morning. The repair shop said maybe I got a bad engine. What is the likelyhood that both of these engines were shot? The first time we took it to them they said nothing was wrong with it and it ran great. Four days later it had 2 bent rods and a cracked o ring. We think the anitfreeze is leaking somewhere into the exhaust but we're not sure. If I got a new motor wouldn't that have fixed the problem? We don't want the same shop to look at this again, so we are going somewhere else for a diagnosis. Any thoughts?
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Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007 AT 4:14 PM

16 Replies

Tiny
TAURUSWHEEL
  • MEMBER
First thing is to go back and tell whomever it was to fix it right this time, what size engine is this? I posted in your previous thread?
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Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007 AT 4:56 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
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It's a v6, anything ele I'm not sure
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Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007 AT 5:51 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
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My engine is a 3.8 v6 I don't want to take it back to the place that "fixed it". I want a second opinioin to see what is wrong and if indeed it could have been the engine in the first place
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Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007 AT 6:08 PM
Tiny
TAURUSWHEEL
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Unfortunately the 3.8 is a nightmare, headgaskets were a common failure on this motor, often leading to total engine trashing. They would tend to fail right around your mileage + or =. I would check with a Ford Dealer, at one time they were offering an extended warranty for up to 100k miles, not sure of the qualifying details. I know it applied to some of the older models, maybe 93 and newer?
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Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007 AT 8:39 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
  • MEMBER
Wouldn't I have noticed something funny going on with the car, missing knockiing etc. Would the diagnostic test have come up some kind of code? I never saw a check enginge light, oil light or anything and it ran great. I feel bad that I don't trust this repair shop anymore, but what can I think if I have spent BIG BUCKS and still have the same problem.
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Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007 AT 10:26 PM
Tiny
TAURUSWHEEL
  • MEMBER
Looking back over your post, bent rods indicate coolant in the compression chamber, coolant won't compress hence the bending of parts. Or coolant gets in the bottom end and trashes away the bearings and related parts, you wouldn't have necessarily noticed anything in the early stages if indeed it is your headgasket that failed. Unless you're the type who checks all fluids like about every day, you may have noticed the coolant level reducing slowly provided no other leaks. Or if you've got a good nose, catch a whiff of coolant in your exhaust pipe. The white smoke may or may not be real noticeable until the gasket really lets go. Sometimes in the latter stage, you try to start the car, the engine may momentarily lock-up, then crank and fire. Maybe not any check light coming on unless coolant messes up a sensor such as o2. Usually just a combo of weird things point to it, even noticing bubbles in the coolant expansion bottle or degas bottle whichever they call it. Then a leakdown test by a qualified repair shop can definitely make the determination. I'd still raise heck with the shop, investigate with Ford, it's not like they don't know this engine isn't a pile. It's too bad, it's a nice torquey motor, also expert at breaking motor mounts at least on the older cars, especially Taurus. I know all this firsthand.
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Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007 AT 11:08 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
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WELL AS WE SUSPECTED NO OTHER FORD REPAIR SHOP WANTS TO GET INVOLVED, WE TOOK IT BACK TO THE FIRST PLACE AND THEY ARE GOING TO CHECK IT OUT FURTHER. I TOLD HIM WHAT FRUSTRATED ME THE MOST WAS THAT THEY SENT ME HOME THE FIRST TIME AND SAID NOTHING WAS WRONG. COULD I HAVE TRASHED THE ENGINE IN THE 5 DAYS BEFORE I TOOK IT BACK THE SECOND TIME? IF IT IS SOMETHING WITH THE INTAKE MANIFOLD, WOULD THAT HAVE CAME WITH THE NEW MOTOR? WILL POST WITH THE RESULTS WHEN THEY CALL ME BACK.
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Thursday, January 4th, 2007 AT 11:24 AM
Tiny
TAURUSWHEEL
  • MEMBER
As far as trashing the engine it depends on the amount of coolant that passed the headgasket, and if it found it's way into the bottom end, you know crankcase. Where does the intake manifold figure into this? If you're blowing white smoke, it's coolant plain and simple. Black=gas, blue=oil, white=coolant
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Thursday, January 4th, 2007 AT 3:24 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
  • MEMBER
Just grasping for straws. We first thought a head gasket, then the intake etc So it probably is the headgasket? So that would mean my old motor and the new has the same problem, again what are the chances of that? Thanks for replying
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Thursday, January 4th, 2007 AT 3:48 PM
Tiny
TAURUSWHEEL
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If you're blowing white smoke, it's coolant. Take the car to the local Ford dealer, tell them you want a leakdown test done, this will confirm a blown head gasket. I suppose it's maybe slightly possible some type of leak could find it's way thru the lower intake manifold assembly, most likely not so. 3.8's blow headgaskets, do a web search, Ford certainly knows this to be true.
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Thursday, January 4th, 2007 AT 8:32 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
  • MEMBER
I've been looking on the net, but I can only find articles about the engines used in the 95-99 cars.
It seems like it takes about 3 yrs for the defect to show up. Maybe there will be more complaints as time goes by.
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Thursday, January 4th, 2007 AT 11:03 PM
Tiny
TAURUSWHEEL
  • MEMBER
On the years you have listed, headgaskets were going bad around 60k+ miles, around the 3-4 tr mark depending. I don't believe Ford ever really had a concrete explanation for the thousands of failures. Some thought it may have been the design combined with the way it was mounted in the vehicles, putting undue stress on certain parts of the motor. Go get a leakdown test performed.
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Friday, January 5th, 2007 AT 5:54 PM
Tiny
SILVERWOLF
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I agree with the rest, its the head gasket. I would check the serial number on the motor. I'll bet the motor you have now is the same motor the vehicle had from the manufacturer, meaning you got burned bad. Its easy to check, and it also provides proof for a law suit if need be. I've seen it before, lots. The mechanic says the motor is shot, puts in a new gasket, or some pour in sealer in the rad, and sends it out as a new engine, raping the victim of many dollars. I agree with you, take it to a reputable company and have them check the numbers, and fix the problem. Then sue for the engine and the repairs to fix it plus any down time you had. You should have success, but it takes some leg work to find a good mechanic. Post your area, and I'm sure the forum will give you some reputable places in your area. If not, bite the bullet and take it to the stealer ship, lets face it your going to have to sue to get the money back any way, so why not go to Ford to be sure. In fact they are the best ones to tell you if the motor was really replaced or not. Limit driving though, because the more mileage you put on it the less chance of proving fault, and more chance of more damage. Sue for the rental too, and your time. It seems like alot of work, but in the end you'll get it all back, and have piece of mind that Ford fixed it to there warranteed standards. Hope I could help.
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Friday, January 5th, 2007 AT 9:11 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
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The shop called today and said several of the valve stem seals were not seated on one of the cylinders and they fixed them, but there was no need to fix the other side it seemed to be fine. Now I've driven this new motor for several days, have I ruined this engine?
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Friday, January 5th, 2007 AT 9:23 PM
Tiny
SILVERWOLF
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Valve stems not seating cause blue smoke(oil burning)not white smoke. Take it to ford
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Friday, January 5th, 2007 AT 11:31 PM
Tiny
PAMMYK
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Ford is who we are dealing with
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Saturday, January 6th, 2007 AT 8:34 AM

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