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1999 ford taurus no cold start

my 99 taurus with 212000+ miles has recently had all upper engine gaskets replaced, the fuel filter and fuel pressure regulator, all spark plugs and the battery. it is now 14 degrees here. the engine turns but does fire, with starting fluid it will backfire thru the air cleaner tube and fire some. I am at wits end and need my car running to get to work. help please.

Sounds like you’ve got spark. Maybe there’s some moisture in the fuel line and it’s frozen.

last time the car was running I put in a full tank of gas and a bottle of fuel injector cleaner. the last time the car was running it was running rough at low speed especially idle and I think the thermostat locked closed as it stopped producung heat and started overheating.

You’ve got spark. Either it is not getting fuel, or you’ve lost compression. What do you mean by “upper gaskets” does this include head gaskets?

The overheating is a concern and a clue you’ve got head gasket issues. Coolant in the combustion chamber doesn’t help the air/fuel mix to ignite. Compression is needed to get the mix to fire as well. After all these miles your rings could be worn and not sealing the cylinders, meaning low compression. Your values may be leaking, low compression. Or you could have a blown head gasket, low compression and coolant in the cylinder.

It seems your old Taurus is in need of a good evaluation, it is sick you just don’t know what the disease is yet.

a shop replaced both head gaskets as well as the water pump and timing chain cover gasket and a couple of water port gaskets. there was no coolant in the oil before and the car did run fine until the head gaskets started spitting coolant. there is a small amount of taping in the front of the right bank. the shop thinks it is the fuel pump and the thermostat.

it is a good car that i really like and I dont want to surrender and put it out of my misery as of yet.

The shop that did the head gaskets needs to run a compression check. Perhaps the gaskets are not sealing well. After all the work they did the car should be running better. The taping could be the timing chain. I suspect the timing is off somewhere. Being out of time would keep the valves from sealing and lower compression as well a throw off ignition timing. I’d guess your hard starting issues relate back to a problem with the work done on your car.

If it was bad rings the car would not have “run fine” before the head gasket issues.

it didnt run rough or have problems starting to just before the gasket work was done, but I did have to have it towed to the shop as no start at that time. the shop owner said he beleived it was because of lack of compression then…so I figured he must have checked compression afterward. so I need to ask about that before he swaps the fuel pump out.

As this is a fuel injected car the fuel pump is most likely in the gas tank. If you hear noise from the fuel pump it is a light buzzing sound from the back of the car. This isn’t close to the tapping sound at the front of one side of your motor. I’m not sure from your info what makes the mechanic suspect the fuel pump? I also don’t know how a thermostat makes a tapping sound, and even if it did that would not make the car hard to start in the cold. The diagosis given by the shop do not line up with your symptoms.

In the replacing the head gaskets all the fuel injection systems on top of the motor had to come off and be replaced. If it is a fuel issue it is more likely the result of the motor tear down. The job of the fuel pump is to provide a sufficient flow of fuel at a specified pressure. The fuel flow and pressure can be tested and should be tested before this fuel pump is replaced. There is also a fuel pressure regulator which is one of those items on top of the motor that was removed and replaced. A kinked fuel line is more likely than a bad fuel pump.

I still believe your problems are related to something in the work done recently that was not done right or well.

hhmmmmm interesting, the question will be how to state that to the shop owner and mechanic diplomaticly. the fuel pressure regualtor was replaced with a new one and I can try to check for a kink in the fuel line tomorrow when it gets light again. very good clues, thanks.