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Ford Windstar Van

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by over the hill, Jan 5, 2008.

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  1. over the hill

    over the hill Active Member

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    I need some advise from some of you Ford people.

    My neighbors son was given a Ford Windstar van this past summer. It has a transmission problem so I assume it needs rebuilt or exchanged. Its a 95 or 96 with 3.8l engine. Body is very good as well as interior.

    Junk yard offered him 35.00 to pick it up. My son thinks this would make a good shoot car.

    Any Ideas of mileage or value on this vehicle. I can probably buy it for under a hundred.


    Thanks. Gerald
     
  2. School Teacher

    School Teacher Well-Known Member

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    My guess is that a 3.8 liter V-6 Windstar with 95,000 miles is a problem waiting to happen.


    I would run, not walk, away from it unless I were a mechanic and owned my own shop.


    The Ford 3.8 liter V-6 IMO has had a lot of problems.


    We bought a 1997 Mercury Cougar for our daughter with the 3.8 V6. The engine began loosing coolant at 110,000 miles and I had the head gaskets replaced and some other major repairs. The mechanic said that he had never seen a 3.8 make it that long on the original head gaskets.


    There was a factory recall on the head gasket problem but we were never notified of the recall until it had expired. We purchased the vehicle new.


    My daughter babied the car and drove it in a very easy manner.

    We replaced the vehicle with a Toyota Camry.

    Today, I still have the Cougar and drive it on around town and short trips. The air conditioner and the automatic transmission still work well at 116,000 miles.

    However, I do not trust it and it will go to Goodwill at the next major problem.

    No more Fords.
     
  3. kehrby

    kehrby Active Member

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    I'm a Ford Technician and Schoolteacher is right on one point. The 3.8 did have headgasket problems during this period of time. Since you already know it needs a trans be ready for the heads also. If however you can get it real cheap and you are good with a wrench, buy it. As far as Schoolteachers other comment, Ford has come a heck of a long way since 1995. Check JD Powers quality of Ford against Toyota in the last year!!!

    Steve
     
  4. Shooting Jack

    Shooting Jack Active Member

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    I had a 91 TBird with a 3.8 and traded it with 140,000 miles with never a problem. Later on we got a 2000 winstar with a 3.8 with never a problem, traded it for an 02 Winstar and have 90,000 miles on it and not a single problem. I may be wrong but believe at one point they started puting plastic intakes on some of the 3.8's and created the problem with leaking coolant and blowing head gaskets. Jackie B.
     
  5. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    If you have a good place to do the work, manual literacy is the most important survival skill.

    HM
     
  6. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Its a Ford

    Plus its a Windstar

    How much pain can you handle

    How much money do you have

    How much time do you have

    regards from Iowa

    Gene

    PS -- I think even Tron is getting away from Fords and into guns
     
  7. Bisi

    Bisi TS Member

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    Here is a story about a Ford van. Click on above link.
     
  8. School Teacher

    School Teacher Well-Known Member

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    Kehrby:


    I was a devoted Ford owner for over 20 years. During this period, the three dealerships I dealt with went out of business and their service work was poor and expensive. I found an independent garage that did superb work at a reasonable price and his mechanics kept my Fords running for hundreds of thousands of miles. One vehicle had over 330,000 miles on it when I gave it to Goodwill.


    My experience with two Ford vehicles I purchased in 1997, both with the 3.8 Liter V-6, has caused me not to trust Ford products. Not being notified of the recall on the 3.8’s head gaskets was the straw that broke the camel’s back.


    Maybe Ford’s quality has gotten better but I have very little trust in the company itself.


    Toyota is a long way from being perfect but they have my confidence now. I believe that Toyota makes products with long term use and serviceability in mind while other companies are simply looking for a quick sale.


    I hope for your and the Ford worker’s sake that Ford is able to make good vehicles. They once did and you would think that a car company in business for as long as Ford has been around would know how to make decent head gaskets.


    Bisi:

    I had a wonderful experience with an E-150 Ford Club Wagon. I drove it daily for over 20 years. If I needed another vehicle of that type, I would consider a Ford van.
     
  9. kehrby

    kehrby Active Member

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    The 3.8 did and still does leave a bad taste in many peoples mouths, mine included. I remember working on one in a 1981 F150 and thinking my gosh what a piece of crap. Too me they never got any better. That being said, don't let one poor design lead you to believe all Fords are junk. Ford actually put the 3.0L in the Windstar also which is one of the best engines Ford has ever made but for some reason very few ever bought that option. Too bad because with that engine the things are like the energizer bunny. They just keep going.

    Steve
     
  10. kelly andersen

    kelly andersen TS Member

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    It would be a great shoot car, you could waste alot of ammo on it shootin it up. My sister had one and it was the biggest piece of junk on gods greeen earth. Fixing the trans. problem would probably cost 4 times what the van is worth. run forest run.
     
  11. The Rock

    The Rock Active Member

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    Have a 95 Aerostar in same condition bad trans. But the motor is still a bear with 197,000 miles and no oil burning or any fluid problems body is spotless. $1,100.00 to rebuild the transmission. $150.00 salvage value. $100.00 junk value.
    Being rear wheel drive the wife loves this van. But she is at the point of reality now and it is leaving next week I hope.

    Rock

    Jim
     
  12. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Head gaskets on Windstars are notorious for going out around %0,000+ miles, and there are lots of horror stories of repairs running $3000. Entire websites were dedicated to this and other complaints.

    I'd pass on it and find something else. It's not worth putting any money into it because it's just not built to last. Ford started building vehicles that would only last the life of the typical lease. That's why Toyota has surpassed them in sales.
     
  13. kehrby

    kehrby Active Member

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    Come on Brian! Thats crap and you know it. Lumping the whole scope of Ford Motor company onto the problems of the 3.8L engine and saying that they only build cars to last as long as a lease is absolute nonsense. Why would any company think that short term?

    Steve
     
  14. over the hill

    over the hill Active Member

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    Thanks for everyones responses. It was not my intent to start any Ford bashing.

    Ive been a GM man for almost 50 years (Oldsmobile) and have had no experience with Fords. Van just looks to good to junk but I think I will pass.

    It seems Detroit has had Head Gasket problems regardless with what make you bought. I work with people who owned Chryslers and GMs and had same problems.

    Its time for Detroit to get it together. They can do it.

    Thanks again Gerald
     
  15. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Steve, go do some research on the topic. Sadly, it isn't crap. The head gasket issue is all too real, and the expense to fix it is all too real. I am really dismayed at the direction Ford has gone, having been a diehard Ford man up until the last few years.
     
  16. Marco Polo

    Marco Polo TS Member

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    This is sounding like the arguement about the OLDS diesel. It was called the biggest piece of junk that was ever built. I had several salesmen friends who got OVER 250,000 miles (or more) from those engines. They also took care of their vehicles and just didn't drive them till they dropped.
     
  17. fearlessfain

    fearlessfain TS Member

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    clyde barrow could have stolen any car that he wanted and he always picked fords. he even wrote henry ford a letter complimenting him on a fine product.
     
  18. baflstang

    baflstang Member

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    One thing you may consider; Ford, GM, Toy, Niss, et. al. do not make their own gaskets. Try McCord for the junk 3.8 gaskets (I have repaired many and use Fel-Pro). As far as the recall, don't forget your infamous uncle.......... SAM. Bill Weaver
     
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