help! Can I have a locked-up engine fixed?!!

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I just got my '95 Windstar back from the mechanic. I had brought it in
to have the starter replaced-now the guy says the engine is seized

How would this happen?! Yes, it had a slow oil leak, but I was keeping
an eye on it & keep the level good. Van drove fine-parked one day went
to start it the next & no go. A friend(a fair but not great backyard
mechanic) and I looked at it and fiddled a bit, both agreed it seemed
to be the starter-the engine did try & turn over. It sat for 2 mos
until I could get it fixed-now the engine is supposedly locked-up.

the mechanic did say the starter was bad and they replaced it. But he
seems scarce on any further details-it makes me suspicious!! He also
won't say how it could happen except maybe it was run out of oil  'at
one time or another'  ?!  IT WASN'T!!

I just don't know what to do next. I'm a single parent of 3 small boys
and finances are stretched thin. I can put several hundred into it,
but not thousands. And this was a good van-drove excellent, no
worries. I didn't run it out of oil or water-not an idiot. In fact I
checked the oil when it came back from mechanic, too, and its Ok-about
1/2 quart low.

Any ideas, guys? And how do I tell if mechanic is telling the truth-
what should I look for when we try and start it?
I have experience with minor car repairs-alternators, fuel pumps, etc,
but mostly with older cars. Engine stuff is beyond me.


Re: help! Can I have a locked-up engine fixed?!! wrote:
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Your probable 3.8 hydro locked because of bad headgaskets.
Probably engine rebuild time. That will probabaly cost as much
as the vans worth in good shape.


Re: help! Can I have a locked-up engine fixed?!!

On Feb 15, 12:31 am, wrote:
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Take the van to someone you can trust.  If the engine turned over
before it sat for two months it should in all likelyhood continue to
at least turn over with a new starter.  Follow your gut, all this
guy's standard responses seem to be red flagging it.

Unfortunately you'll have to pay the man before you can touch the car,
but get it rolled out of the garage bay and hop in and turn the key,
see what happens.  You can't go in the garage bays, insurance
reasons.  Give the guy a good sob story to at least demonstrate to you
why he thinks the engine is seized.  Have a towtruck on standby ready
to take it somewhere else.  If it turns over or at least cranks, have
the mechanic or service writer, whoever this guy is and ask him to
explain what he meant by "seized".  Above all be polite, or you'll
lose his attention if you can get it.  If he won't give you any
attention, he's most likely a huckster and knows he'll lose face if he
has to explain how he could have been wrong.

Can't see you from here but you sound like someone the seedier
elements in the auto repair business like to target for bogus
repairs.  Shame really, does a lot of competent mechanics and shops a
huge disservice by fomenting distrust among consumers.  Primarily why
I do my own repairs or go in armed to the teeth with details and

Good luck

Re: help! Can I have a locked-up engine fixed?!!

On 15 Feb 2007 08:57:28 -0800, wrote:

Quoted text here. Click to load it
If it won't crank, ask him to remove the spark plugs and try again. If
it turns over then, you know you have a hyda-lock situation. If it's a
3.8 liter, that means total rebuild time. If it's a 3.0, you may get
away with replacing the head gaskets and a bit of remedial work.


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