I own a 2009 Mercury Mountaineer with 20,000 miles and I bought it new. It was making a noise so I took it back to the dealership. They said the fourth cylinder is not getting any compression and told me I had to get a brand new engine. I can’t understand why it needs a new engine so soon? The warranty ran out on it and the price they are asking to replace engine is way more than I can afford! Tom, please help me!
Sarah from LA
I would contact the Ford district service manager on this one. The engine should not need replacing so soon unless you seriously abused and neglected it (never changed the oil, ran it hard when it was low on oil or coolant, etc.). Make sure you have your service records so you can make the case that, despite impeccable maintenance practices, the engine failed at such low mileage. Perhaps if you show that you are a loyal customer with great maintenance practices, the “powers that be” at Ford Motor Company will have pity on you and replace your engine for free or at a discounted cost. Good luck!
I own a 2008 Ford Taurus-X with 62,000 miles. When the car warms up and I stop at a light or a stop sign the oil light comes on. I checked the oil and it is full. Any suggestions? Thank you.
Luanne from Boston
The only way to determine if the oil pressure is low is to temporarily install a mechanical oil pressure gauge to the engine and see if it is indeed low at idle. If it is low, the engine will have to be disassembled and inspected for worn parts such as rod, main and cam bearings. In addition, a worn oil pump could cause this condition. Finally, the oil pump pickup screen could be clogged with sludge buildup caused by not changing the oil regularly. If the oil pressure is OK according to the gauge, then check the electrical plug to the oil-sending unit. It could be loose or the sending unit is bad. I wish you success.
I own a 2009 Saturn VUE FWD 3.5L V6. About a year ago I had the serpentine belt replaced. It did nothing but squeal after it was put on. Using belt spray was the only way I could get rid of the noise. However, the squeal would come back after a couple of hours. An auto parts store recommended that I replace the belt again. I think there’s something else wrong. Can you offer a solution?
Samuel from NH
The parts store is in business to do what? Sell auto parts! Hence their suggestion to replace the serpentine belt (without even lifting the hood). Check the automatic belt tensioner to make sure it’s keeping proper belt tension. If not, replace it first. If you find the tensioner to be OK, there’s another possibility as to why the belt is still squealing: I found a TSB (Technical Service Bulletin) on belt misalignment on these vehicles. The bulletin is # 08-06-01-008A from Saturn. Apparently, there’s a procedure that incorporates the use of a laser alignment device to properly align the pulleys in the system. (It seems they come out of alignment due to wear.) Either the dealer can perform this procedure or a good quality shop that has the tools and info systems that outline the procedure. Success to you.
Tom Torbjornsen is an automotive expert of 37 years. An automotive journalist in good standing with the IMPA (International Motor Press Association) and MPG (Motor Press Guild), Torbjornsen is the Repair and Maintenance Editor for AOL Autos, At Home Portals and many other websites. Hear his radio show. America’s Car Show, on the SSI Radio Network Saturdays at 8 a.m. Listen to the show on the live stream during regular show times at www.americascarshow.com. Send your car questions to his website at www.americascarshow.com. You can also find Tom’s book, “How To Make Your Car Last Forever,” in local Barnes & Nobel booksellers, or order online at Amazon.com.