HELP!!! Ford Taurus 2001

Just went to the dealer for service because my check engine was blinking when the car is idling and staying on solid when the car is moving. The car
was bought in July 2001 and has 54,000 miles on it. The car is a 24V DHOC 2001 Taurus. Here is the report from the service dept.
"Customer states check engine light on per SBDS diagnosis and servicing code P0304. Cylinder number 4 has 65 lbs compression and should be 120 or more. We do not recommend any plug wire, spark plug or Coil Pack work done until the compression concern is addressed."
They then told me they would have to take apart the engine to see what is wrong. The cost just to find out what is wrong would be $800. They indicated I might need the engine replaced ($7,000). I have kept up with the maintenance of the car with most of the oil changes performed at this dealer.
Any ideas what I can do? I contacted Ford Customer Service (800) 392-3673 who then contacted the dealer. I then spoke to the dealer who told me it would still cost $800 to determine what is wrong with the car and after they find out they will try to contact Ford and get Ford to help pay for the cost of repairs, but there is no guarantee that Ford will help.
Thanks in advance.
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tmarin7 wrote:

    I am not a mechanic, but you need to take this car to a local shop. They should be able to determine if the valves or rings are your problem by doing a compression check and using a little motor oil. It sounds like they are getting ready to buy a new boat.
    If you are looking for other more qualified opinions, you might go to Car Talk: http://cartalk.com/board/postlist.php?Cat=&Board=CQ
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1. Does the car idle/run rough? 2. Can you hear any obvious engine noises?
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light on per SBDS diagnosis and servicing code

I would get a second opinion. P0304 means misfire on cylinder 4
If the compression check came back with 65 lbs as you said, then they should hve done a "wet" compression check where they pour a bit of oil into the cylinder and check to see if it's a piston ring that is not sealing or a hole in the piston. Once they have determined that, then really the only other thing it could be is a bad valve. I don't know of an instancve where the engine would need to be replaced due to low compression in one cylinder. Take it to a reputable independent mechanic and pay him a few bucks to do another compression test. That way you will know for sure if it is really a problem.
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