I have a 2003 Ford Taurus wagon that has an issue that keeps changing. After I bought it used in 2010, it had a shift delay and a transmission fluid flush seemed to have fixed that. Then the starter died and that was replaced. Approximately 6-8 months later, randomly, the indicator lights would come on and the engine would lose power, both stationary and in motion (55 mph on curvy roads, no engine power or power steering - positively exhilarating… …). If the car was stationary then it need to be restarted. If it was in motion the engine would turn back on. I took it to two repair shops. The first one said that it was related to the antitheft deceive and I needed to go to a dealership. I took the car to a dealership and they said it was the synchronizer that was causing the loss of power and the smoke and burning smell. Of course they didn’t experience the loss of power when test driving it. I spent a TON of money to have that “fixed”. One month later, the engine loses power multiple times again with indicator lights turning on and I immediately take it back and ask them to review the repair because it wasn’t fixed. The response was pretty much to “just deal with it”. I was more than irate. I will never go back there and warn others to not go there. I was ready to trade the car in and buy new, not a Ford. My husband talked me out of it and instead had the battery tested at Advanced and AutoZone and the result was a bad diode. The first guy didn’t know what it meant; the second one said it needed a new alternator. Ok, replaced that. The car ran fine for a little while. Then, in the cold, when I had the rear defrost on, radio and head lights for a little while there would be a pop from the dashboard that was also audible in the speakers and a very quick blink of all indicator lights. I stopped using the rear defroster and that stopped. Then the car started with the random loss of power and all indicator lights coming on again mostly when coming to a stop. I had another repair shop look at it and their conclusion was “Just get rid of it. We can’t figure it out”. They also didn’t experience the loss of power. So now I refused to drive it. I don’t want my daughter in the car either. I traded vehicles with my husband. He took it to another repair shop and they couldn’t figure it out. They also did not experience the loss of power. He asked for their best educated guess. They said idle air control valve. So that was replaced. Now, when we turn on the AC or vent in idle, the engine loses RPMs (~500 RPM) and the idle air valve kicks in and revs the engine pretty hard for 30 seconds and then cyclic for a while and seems to fade with use. My husband took it back to the same repair shop and asked them. They said it was normal. It doesn’t seem normal to me. Now in addition to that, it sounds like the starter is going again, but only when it is hot and/or humid mostly after running for a while or in the hot sun.
Any idea what is wrong with the car?
Any idea how much it would might cost for diagnostics and repair?
Thank you so much in advance!