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Hoping for some help


We have two old cars, a 96 Chrysler Sebring 6 cylinder and a 98 Ford Taurus 3.0 V (no overhead cam). I see I need to ask about one car at a time, so I’ll ask about the Taurus first.

The Taurus over the past month has overheated and I can now see fluid dripping from the rear head. It’ll run, but it runs very rough and I can’t drive it. There is a lot of vapor coming out of the tailpipe if I run it, and the air filter is soaking wet.

I want to repair the head gasket on it but I was told that the vapor might mean that a cylinder is shot as well, and I can’t easily take on engine-block problems.

Any input to help me decide would be appreciated; should I go ahead and do the head gasket or forget it?

thanks for any input.

If you’ve been driving the car for awhile with the leaking head gasket that can damage the engine and take out a cylinder. Your best bet might be to swap out a salvage yard engine. There are a lot of 98 3.0 Ford engines in salvage yards all over the country.

The only way to know what is going on with your motor is to tear it down and see what the cylinder walls look like, scored or smooth. The chances are good your motor is pretty much shot due to the head gasket damage so you could get more bang for your buck by getting another used motor.

Pull the head and look. The bigger problem would be if the combustion gases were getting into the cooling jackets and corroding things up. My daughter’s 91 beater had this. I was about to do the head gaskets when the freeze plugs started to leak. They’re all over the place and much harder to replace than the head gasket.

Get a Vulcan out of a later model Taurus if you see issues when you take the heads off.

thank you, and you’re right, I found a few 3.0’s locally. Probably less work than the head gasket repair anyway.

You can buy an entire running Taurus, OHC engine, cheaper than repairing or replacing the engine in your beater…Time to move on…