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the 92 3.8 v6 merc cougar from hell

CM Wendell's Avatar
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03-31-03, 11:30 PM   #1  
CM Wendell
the 92 3.8 v6 merc cougar from hell

i have gas pressure, i checked that out. me and my dad pulled the distributor cap, and the rotor is turning fine. i have a dead battery at the moment so i have to get a new one of those and hopefully it will start up. but when the vibrating/grinding/ticking sound stopped, i blew a whole lotta white smoke outta my tailpipe. my GF's father said it was my oil lifter valves that were stuck. actually i had several people tell me this. how do i know if it is the lifter valves ? i already know that the headgasket is still OK, and is changing the valves yourself a "do it yourself" kinda job ? if not, about how much will a rebuilt engine cost ? the only reason that i wanna fix this car is because i still have $1500 to pay off on it, and if its less that what i owe to fix it, ill get it fixed because it seems worth it. does anybody else have an experience with a rattling sounds when you accelerate in your cougar/thunderbird ? it only happent when i would accelerate up until the point that i shifted gears. when it shifted, it would quiet down considerably. please help guys im friggin stumped !

The "Chick Magnet" Wendell Sunshine

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WeldGod's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2003
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04-01-03, 12:25 AM   #2  
White smoke is coolant 99% of the time. So I doubt you are burning oil. You might have a cracked water jacket or head causing coolant to be burned. As for the ratting and grinding sound that might have been the sound of your heads dying. There is also a far chance that you have an exhaust leak or broken exhaust bolt. I would start by pulling off the valve covers to see what it looks like in there. A compression test would also be a good thing to do, as well as pulling any codes. You might find some one with a fiber optic bore scope to investigate the internal condition with out tearing the motor down. Your motor has hydraulic tappets so they self adjust valve lash, in theory. If you do have to rebuild your heads you might have to buy a couple of special tools if you DIY, but its not to tricky. And sense you only owe 1500$ on it I would looking in to a rebuilding the old motor instead of buying a new “used” motor

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04-01-03, 03:18 AM   #3  
I agree with Weld. How did you check the fuel pressure? If not with a hand held pressure gauge, it was not checked correctly.

I wouldn't put .02 into a 3.8 like that. As noted, if it blows white, sweet smelling smoke, it's a blown head gasket.

You'd be money ahead if you pitched it now, cut your losses and upgraded to something else if the gasket is the problem.

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Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 471

04-01-03, 05:00 PM   #4  
the 3.8's were the worst motors ford ever built. EVERY one of them blows headgaskets--yes it is noted in ford, and yes it was a recall, but good luck getting them to fix it.

Yes you have a bad head gasket. $1500 is not too much to owe on the car. I just dumped my 94 tbird 3.8L and I owed $4500 on it, yes, I took the loss and walked. Pitch the car. Head gasket jobs suck on it good luck

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