Unfortunately Ford led the way many years ago in leaving off grease fittings. That saves a nickel per fitting. Build a million cars, save four million nickels. Who cares how long the parts last. Ok, that's my sarcastic answer, but every manufacturer took a lesson and they're doing the same thing.
In my experience as a suspension and alignment specialist, when Ford parts start squeeking, it isn't long before they separate and you lose control. This used to be REAL common on the '80s Escort and Tempo outer tie rod ends but they don't cause quite so much trouble on the Taurus. Still, the front end should be inspected at a tire and alignment shop or by your regular mechanic. The lower ball joints are the most comon cause of a squeek when turning but the outer tie rods can cause that too. The rack and pinion is not very likely since the inner tie rod ends don't swivel very much.
Most aftermarket replacement lower ball joints and outer tie rod ends come with grease fittings. Ask your mechanic if there are fittings on any parts they install so you can tell the guys who change your oil. Most of the people who just do oil changes know there aren't any fittings on Fords so they don't look for them. As a result, they can be overlooked leading to early wear of the part.
Wednesday, April 14th, 2010 AT 10:55 PM