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A. Penland
A. Penland, Ford Senior Master Technician, ASE
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 6563
Experience:  ASE Master Certified, ASE Advanced Gasoline Engine Performance
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2001 Ford Taurus: as a timing chain cover seal that

Customer Question

My 2001 Ford Taurus 3.0L wagon has developed a coolant leak on the front passenger side of the engine. A mechanic diagnosed it as a timing chain cover seal that failed, and said the repair will cost $1200 because they'd have to pull the engine. Because of the price tag, I didn't repair, was advised to at least keep the coolant level up. (Car has 199K miles, although everything else is in pretty good shape, considering mileage.) Until recently, it was leaking slowly, and I'd have a small (2-4 inch diameter) puddle under my car after parking overnight, and was putting in a quart of coolant maybe every month or two. Recently, the problem has gotten way worse, and I will have a giant puddle, and am going through coolant very quickly. Questions are: is the estimate I got accurate? What's happening now, did the gasket finally go? If so, is this a reasonable repair for a car this age?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  A. Penland replied 6 years ago.

Hello and thanks for using Just Answer.I will try my best to help you with your question.


To replace the timing chain cover, the engine does not have to be removed. It can be done with the engine still in the vehicle.

The labor is 5.5 hours.

You will need a timing cover gasket that is $9 and it would be best to replace the water pump while you are there. It is $132. No extra labor.


Their estimate is too high.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
That assumes they're right, I guess. Given the type of leak, would it make sense that it's the gasket (as opposed to the cover itself, or something else entirely?) I'm not super mechanically inclined, but the gasket is what they told me.
Expert:  A. Penland replied 6 years ago.

It is just a gasket failure. have the timing cover gasket replaced. You can call around and get different prices from other repair shops for the repair.


The labor is only about $500. the parts are $145. That is short of $1200.