Jump to content

Nominations for Tractor of the Month
Garden Tractors and Parts on eBay



Photo
- - - - -

Up to my eyeballs in broken van


  • Please log in to reply
10 replies to this topic

#1 nra1ifer OFFLINE  

nra1ifer

    Tractorholic

  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 383
  • 669 Thanks
  • 1,530 posts
  • Location: Bentonville, AR

Posted September 05, 2011 - 08:35 PM

1999 Windstar 3.8L V-6, has almost 200k miles on it. Blew a head gasket the other day, luckily we were in town and didn't have to get towed too far to get home. Gathered up about $300-$400 in parts, then started the tear-down late yesterday evening. What a PITA this job is! Luckily, everything is coming apart fairly easily. Up through this evening, I have one side of the engine finished, started taking the other side apart this evening. Also need to replace the water pump, which I already had on hand, because it was weeping. I guess I might take tomorrow off to hopefully finish this job. Stopped soon enough to pick a 5-gallon bucket full of okra, got in as it was getting dark.

I think I'll take a shower tonight whether I need it or not!

#2 MH81 ONLINE  

MH81

    Proud to be Deplorable

  • Staff Admin
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 802
  • 27,242 Thanks
  • 28,599 posts
  • Location: N. W. PA

Posted September 05, 2011 - 08:58 PM

I hope your head gasket saga goes better than mine. My Escort lost the gasket between 1 and 2, replaced the gasket, bolts, water pump, timing belt, serpentine belt, etc. Ran great for 2 weeks, then lost a rod. Took it to a mechanic to see what I had done wrong, he said that it was the rod, and it was just bad luck... Not my fault. Made me feel better, but my car was still broke.

#3 grand OFFLINE  

grand

    Tractorholic

  • Senior Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 8
  • 1,632 Thanks
  • 1,909 posts
  • Location: PA

Posted September 05, 2011 - 09:06 PM

2 months after we moved to our new home I was at the road to turn onto our new street when my 1995 Voyager van began to run roughly. I made the short drive to our driveway but by then the van was producing huge clouds of white smoke. The van had served us well, but wasn't going to be revived. It made a dignified ride to the scrap yard in the sky.

#4 Alc ONLINE  

Alc

    Tractorholic

  • Senior Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 1094
  • 5,445 Thanks
  • 6,611 posts
  • Location: Bangor Pa

Posted September 06, 2011 - 06:08 AM

I give you a lot of credit on tackling a job like that . They don't make vehicles too easy to service anymore , and are getting worse all the time , Al

#5 DougT ONLINE  

DougT

    Dog Approved

  • Super Moderator
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 584
  • 5,715 Thanks
  • 4,274 posts
  • Location: north central Ohio

Posted September 06, 2011 - 06:59 AM

Probably too late for this but on a Windstar you can take the wiper arms off and a few screws hold that plastic piece that hangs out over the engine. That will open it up back to the firewall. Makes the back of the engine a whole lot easier to get to.

#6 JDBrian OFFLINE  

JDBrian

    Super Moderator

  • Super Moderator
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 2507
  • 9,574 Thanks
  • 14,136 posts
  • Location: Hubley, Nova Scotia - Canada

Posted September 06, 2011 - 06:59 AM

Sounds like a big job and I wish you luck but I'm glad I'm not doing it. I hate working on cars. I can enjoy working on just about any other kind of machinery, but not cars. It seems most modern cars are very difficult for the average guy to work on anyway. The prices they are charging for labour at dealers these days are frightening. Maybe after I retire I'll start doing oil changes and routine stuff but right now I don't even do that.

#7 nra1ifer OFFLINE  

nra1ifer

    Tractorholic

  • Senior Member
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 383
  • 669 Thanks
  • 1,530 posts
  • Location: Bentonville, AR

Posted September 07, 2011 - 05:33 AM

Probably too late for this but on a Windstar you can take the wiper arms off and a few screws hold that plastic piece that hangs out over the engine. That will open it up back to the firewall. Makes the back of the engine a whole lot easier to get to.


Thanks for the tip, but after having this van for so long, I've become very adept at dismantling the engine compartment. I think I learned that trick the first time I tried to replace spark plugs..... after fighting it for awhile, I finally looked in the service manual (imagine that!!!)

Good news!!!!! As of 10:30 last night, that long-awaited first start after replacing the head gaskets was a success! Only one minor problem was encountered: I had cyl 5 and cyl 6 spark plug wires swapped at the coil pack, but other than that, no issues!!! Unless you count my best half's disbelieving eyes when she watched dirt/grime/PB Blaster/oil/etc burn off of the hot exhaust manifolds and other hot engine parts. I told her that was to be expected, and it would quit doing that in awhile (I had my fingers crossed, of course!!!) I let the van run for a couple of hours while I cleaned up all of my "toys" (don't you HATE that part???)...... So far, so good! I still need to take the van down from the jack stands it's on. I'll do that later today, but it will have to be after work. Meanwhile, I'll borrow my wife's car to get to work this morning. Hopefully, this fix will last awhile. I'd rather not have to buy another vehicle. (nra1ifer = frugal, best half = CHEAP!!!)

You know what?? I don't care how careful and confident a person is with a repair job. That first start always makes me pucker!!! I always ask the Lord for a little help, then turn the key!!

#8 KennyP ONLINE  

KennyP

    FORDoholic

  • Super Moderator
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 2253
  • 28,383 Thanks
  • 39,649 posts
  • Location: Collinsville, Oklahoma

Posted September 07, 2011 - 05:38 AM

Glad to hear it is among the useful items again. Good luck putting it back on all fours.

#9 tinner OFFLINE  

tinner

    Tractorholic

  • Senior Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 961
  • 502 Thanks
  • 1,561 posts
  • Location: 20 Miles East Of Ding Dong, Texas

Posted September 07, 2011 - 06:55 AM

Good luck on the van. Last week I had the check engine light and air bag light on the wife's 2005 Tahoe come on and the AC was blowing hot air on the driver (not good in Texas) and cold on the passenger. Took it to the dealer who did an $80 diagnosis and he listed four things needed fixed, left front air bag sensor, number 1 O2 sensor, left AC damper actuator and he noticed the water pump was weeping. They wanted $2105 to fix everything. Bought $515 worth of parts and fixed it in 8 hours. The AC actuator took 6 of those hours because of how hard it was to get to. Glad it's all fixed 'cause the little bride is happy now and when she's not happy the whole world is not happy.

#10 MH81 ONLINE  

MH81

    Proud to be Deplorable

  • Staff Admin
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 802
  • 27,242 Thanks
  • 28,599 posts
  • Location: N. W. PA

Posted September 07, 2011 - 06:56 AM

Amen, to the first start statement. Very glad to hear it started.

#11 caseguy OFFLINE  

caseguy

    Connoisseur of Rusty Junk

  • Senior Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 906
  • 1,624 Thanks
  • 5,600 posts
  • Location: Edinburg, PA

Posted September 07, 2011 - 01:25 PM

Probably too late for this but on a Windstar you can take the wiper arms off and a few screws hold that plastic piece that hangs out over the engine...


For a minute there, I thought that you were gonna say that you could remove the wipers and drive a new van under them!




Top