1992 Ford Taurus overheats, is the fan the issue?

About a month ago I bought a '92 3.0L Taurus that has been overheating and I've noticed that when I turn on the AC, the temp gauge will sit between the "O" and "R", even after operating the car at speeds of
65mph during morning and evening commutes. Using the vent setting and any other combination leaves the gauge closer to the "A" or "L".
I'm just getting into doing my own work on my cars, but I know, from a little research, that the AC unit turns the radiator fan on and it'll always run as long as the AC is running, so it seems as if the fan isn't coming on early enough to prevent the engine from getting too hot.
What could cause the fan to not turn on before a certain temp?
Is it the thermostat?
Since I just recently bought this car I'm not really sure what type of thermostat was used, but I'm thinking that I should replace it with a t-stat that opens at a lower temp and hope that it'll fix the problem.
Is it a Fan switch or something?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 29 Jun 2006 06:40:14 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

The engine cooling fan runs all the time up to about 40 MPH where it will turn off when one of the a/c or defrost positions are selected. If these are not selected, the fan only runs when the coolant temp starts to go past the normal temp. The sensor is set for a particular temp. If the fan is not turning on allowing th engine to actually overheat, you may have a bad temp sensor. Your vehicle will have a separate sensor for the guage and the one the ECM sees to control the fan operation.
Lugnut
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

and the thermostat has nothing to do with it... because IT sets the minimum engine operating temperature (which is designed for best efficiency, btw) AND that temp is what you're seeing with the fan running. So changing the tstat would only lower the temp shown when fan-running, use more gas, and have absolutely no effect on the temp when it 'overheats'
I assume that temp drops lower than A or L at highway cruise speeds
--
Yeh, I'm a Krusty old Geezer, putting up with my 'smartass' is the price
you pay..DEAL with it!
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.