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Ford Mustang, Engine, Coupe
#1 of 10 Spark Knock
Dec 27, 2002 (8:47 am)
I have a 2002 Mustang V6 coupe with 13K miles. At 12K miles, I noticed a metallic rattle from the driver's side of the engine when slowing applying the gas at 50 mph or higher (It is especially noticeable going up hills). I took it to the dealer where I bought the car and they told me there is a service advisory on the Mustang for spark knock. They initially replaced the Differential Pressure Feedback (DPFE) due to a fault code but that did not stop the problem. On the second visit, the mechanic drove the car with me and he was able to hear the rattle. The next step was to adjust the octane level. It has been in two more times (four total) and the spark knock is not as bad but it's still there. On my last visit, the mechanic went with me but was unable to hear the rattle. The mechanic told me there are no codes and nothing else to adjust. They indicated it is now documented so if the problem causes damage, Ford would help fix it. Has anyone had a problem like mine? I decided to sell the car since I can't live with any unusual noises from the engine. My problem is I feel obligated to tell a prospective buyer about the problem but if I do, I may never sell the car. The warranty is transferable.
#2 of 10 smithmga: When you go to sell it, be sure you have
Dec 27, 2002 (9:46 am)
Super Premium fuel in it. Are you hearing pre ignition or detonation? IMO that (very common) engine can be "cured". Try another Ford dealer. Preferably a large dealer in a large population area that would have a more expensive and thourough diagnostic machine.
#3 of 10 Thanks Kinley
Dec 28, 2002 (2:37 pm)
I will take my Mustang to a larger city (Macon, Georgia) next time. I now see 2003 Mustangs with automatic transmissions are selling for $15,900 here. So much for not losing my shirt. I paid $312 over invoice in Nov 2001 for my 2002 deluxe with automatic transmission, spoiler, power driver's seat, leather steering wheel, 16 inch bright painted alloy wheels, and stripe ($19,550 with tax), but the latest price is now thousands less. If I can get the Stang fixed, I would keep it and not take the terrible loss. Thanks again. Mike
#4 of 10 sell the mustang???
Dec 28, 2002 (2:50 pm)
I would be bringing that car back to the dealership till it is fixed.Run the gas octane according to the manual and stop masking over the problem.I can't see how someone would dump this 2002 vehicle with 13k miles which is under WARRANTY!!Someone told me it is the suckers that keep the economy going.I am begining to believe that now.
Dec 30, 2002 (10:35 am)
In my own experience, there is tremendous variance in quality between dealerships, even in the same area. So I second what has been recommended above and try another dealership before getting rid of the car. The difference (esp. with big three dealers) can be like night and day.
Only reason to dump it at this point IMO would be to go to a GT.
Besides, if you like your rocker panel stripes ( I personally love 'em, but I seem to be in the minority on this), they're not available on the 2003s. : (
#6 of 10 Thanks for the Inputs
Dec 31, 2002 (10:18 am)
I returned to using regular unleaded a few days ago. I tried another dealer (larger) and they also said without codes on the OBD-II, they can't fix anything. I wrote a long email to Ford and I'm waiting on their reply. In the email, I asked them to send an expert mechanic to check out my car and to start replacing components, e.g. PCM, EGR, spark plugs, etc., even if they think those components are OK. I visited my local dealer until they were sick of me. They transferred me to three service advisors. Not because I was a jerk about the situation but because advisors could not find new ways to tell me they can't fix my car. The reason I would get rid of it is I bought it so my oldest daughter would have a decent vehicle when she goes off to college in 2005. I would have preferred the SVT but I lost a small fortune, like others, in the NASDAQ crash. I didn't sell though, so I console myself by saying my loss was only on paper and my mutual funds will come back in a few more years. Anyway, vidtech, (Jim is this you?) I appreciate your candor, but I'm very sensitive to my vehicles so either Ford fixes it or it's gone. I just won't buy another Ford. I went through this with my wife's 1992 Mazda MPV in 1995 and we avoid Mazda now. Vidtech, your advice is actually the kind of advice I would give myself if I wasn't emotionally involved with the issue. I'll keep those interested apprised of the situation as it unfolds. Thanks. Mike
Dec 31, 2002 (12:21 pm)
I'm wondering if you might be eligible for the "Lemon Buy Back" in your state. I suspect you are, and I'd suggest you research the Lemon Law in your state and start proceedings immediately should you qualify.
#9 of 10 Different Vehicle, Same Problem
Jan 01, 2003 (5:26 pm)
Two years ago my 94 Toyota PU was knocking. I took it in and the mechanics mused over it. They listened and gave the engine a once-over. All the settings were within the factory specs. The truck had around 90,000 miles. The service manager decided to call California for recommendations and to check on anything that Toyota may be running into with this sort of problem. They said that this is "the way it is." Recommended retarding the timing by 3-5 degrees and to burn premium fuel.
The dealer ran some kind of stuff through the engine that burned out the carbon that caused the knock. I filled up with premium and there were no more problems. One year ago we bumped the timing back up to within 1 degree of factory specs. No problem.
The service manager is suspicious of the gasoline. You see in St. Louis we have additives that burn cleaner fuel since the EPA has declared the St. Louis area as polluted (Like L.A.). This "additive" has been known to ruin the gaskets in the older carburetor vehicles in our area (although we own a Corolla with a carb and that car has 210,000 miles with no problems).
So, like smithmga....has anyone else had spark knock problems? The truck in question here is a 4 cylinder 22RE.
Do you guys have additives in your gasoline and the hulking-big gas hoses that suck back the fumes from the gas tank like we do in St. Louis?
#10 of 10 so what ya got down there, methanol?
Jan 01, 2003 (6:57 pm)
that slop eats gasket compound off every engine, nobody recommends more than 1% methanol at best.
ethanol and MTBE are the oxygenates in general use for boosting octane. you can run up to 10% ethanol in fords from 90 on, unless you have an E-85 capable engine, in which case you can run up to 85% ethanol (the 4-poppers in the line are about all "green leaf" engines.)
recapturing gasoline vapors in the gas station tank is NOT a contributor to engine rot, but to pocketbook rot
the state has been told what the makeup of your area gas is, and the refineries are probably boasting about the formulation as well. AFAIK, only Chevron and (formerly Koch) Flint Hills have busted their butts to make a majority of their fuel meet the 2005 oxygenation standards now.