'88 - A FEW ?'S

1988 Lincoln Town Car



December, 11, 2007 AT 4:39 PM

1988 Lincoln Town Car V8 Two Wheel Drive Automatic 167000 miles

I have an 88 Lincoln Town Car Cartier Edition with some issues. It's got a 5.0 V8 EFI.

First Problem - Heat
The heat recently quit working (convenient considering it's around 0 degrees out) after a 250 mile trip. I got back in the car to return home and drove for 5 hours with no heat.
Here's what I know:
The blower still works well
Radiator is full and both hoses leaving it get warm
when the engine heats up.

When I turn the heat on with the temp set to high it gives a burst of hot air for about 1 second then it cuts to cold air. Then if I turn the temp setting to cold with the blower on high I get ice cold air instantly (mind you it's 0-10 degrees F outside) and it stays cold after that. No more slightly cold air, just freezing air. I can get a burst of heat every time I turn the heat on for 1 second, then I turn it off and back on and so on...

I don't know much about thermostats or heater cores but it sounds like either might be causing this.

The first picture I have is of the location the hose from the top of the radiator runs into the block (I think the water pump). Then another hose runs out of there and into the second picture on the top right corner. It runs across the top of the picture then into the dash.

I'd also like to know where the thermostat is in these pictures, I have an idea but I'm not completely sure.

I really need to get this fixed soon and I don't have any money to take it to the dealer. I leave school next Thursday and I have to drive 550 miles in frigid winter temps.




No Heat


9 Answers



December, 11, 2007 AT 4:51 PM

The first picture you show with the upper radiator hose going into that housing with 2 bolts on it, that is the thermostat housing, the thermostat is right under it!

For the heating problem, are both heater core hoses hot, *the hoses that go into the firewall from the engine*

if the uper and lower radiator hose isnt hot then I do not think it is a thermostat problem.

The hose going in and out to the core does one of them feel noticebly hotter or they both the same?



December, 11, 2007 AT 4:56 PM

The top pic shows the thermostat, it's at the end of the hose at the block, the small hose with it is the bypass hose.
The bottom pic shows the heat control valve, m,ake sure the vacuum work to it, if this lever does not move, hot water will not enter the heater core! COLD air will result!



You can as a test remove the heat control valve and install a flush tee, this will eliminate the heat control valve! Buy the Prestone flush kit, the tee is in the kit...



December, 11, 2007 AT 5:15 PM

I definitely felt that hose going through the heater control valve in the second picture and it was warm. I didn't look for any other hoses going into the firewall.

So does that mean hot fluid is getting through that valve and into the heater core? Then it could be the heater core (I'm not sure, just guessing).



December, 11, 2007 AT 5:44 PM

I just talked to my mechanic friend and he said it sounds like the heater core isn't getting any flow because it might be gunked up. He said it's a relatively cheap part but the labor can be up to five hours. I'm in college and don't have money to pay a dealer for five hours of labor. Can anyone give me some more info?



December, 11, 2007 AT 8:18 PM

Feel the second hose if they are the same temp then the core is probably not restricted! The new core is about 50 bucks, on your model im not sure if the core is right behind the glovebox, I think it is because of the year. But it also may be under the dash.

But it sure sounds like it to me. Good luck



December, 11, 2007 AT 10:33 PM

I heard that you can backflush your coolant system to attempt to clear out the heater core or other problems. I know how to flush the system but I'm not exactly sure how to back flush it. Would you just hook up a garden hose to the in and out hoses through the firewall and run some water through it?

Thanks again for all the help.



December, 12, 2007 AT 2:59 AM

Go get a prestone flush kit, then install the tee on your heater line, open the drain at the bottom of the radiator, this may require the removal of the splash shiel under the engine, Attach a garden hose with the supplied adapter, turn it on after the old coolant is drained, run till water is clear. Then drain the water, close radiator, fill with 50-50 antifreeze mix!
To get a good flush of the heater core clamp off the hose behind the tee, this will increase flow thru the core.



January, 4, 2008 AT 11:57 AM

I am also experiencing a problem with the heat in my 88 Lincoln although I have limited heat which after 15 or so miles just blows out semi warm.
With regards to your heater core, I had my replaced several years ago as the previous owner obviously failed to regularly flush out the system and it began to leak after I flushed the system and removed the rust.
Unfortunately this is not an easy job as you need to dismantle alot of the dashboard in order to access/remove/install a new core. The core itself isn't expensive but the time involved is. I dismantled the dash, had everything disconnected but was unable to get the core out. Finally took it to a repair shop specializing in heating systems. I think another set of hands would have helped trying to pull it out from under the dash. You will need the manual if you are willing to attempt the repair yourself as it is a little complex.



January, 4, 2008 AT 3:18 PM

I did one an an old 86 I owned took 6 hours but I did not have to remove the dash! Only the brace at the passenger end, then undo all 6 or 8 bolts and tilt it till it comes out. Block or cap the ends of the core first, or coolant will spill on the rugs!

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