I have a 96 windstar and the air bags leak. I would like to know if anyone
can tell me where to start looking for the leak. I can hear the comperser
going and it airs up the van but in the morning the rear end is sitting back
on the ground. I look under the hood can hear the comperser going but still
can't see it.
Should I start at the compreser and work my way back or form the bags forward?
Are there any parts that wear out sooner than others? I hope this is
something I can fix I realy don't want to think about what a shop or
dealership would charge.
Thanx for any help
The most likely problem is a leak in one of the rear air bags (don't recall
airbags on a Windstar, is it factory?). The air springs are a wear item and
fail at about 10 years. Look at the bags where they roll at the bottom, you will
probably see cracks in the rubber. Always replace them in pairs. Not only is the
compressor raising the car in the morning, it is keeping them filled while you
driving. If not fixed soon, this will saturate the air dryer and the excessive
time will damage the pump adding greatly to the cost of the repair. It's usually
extremely simple job to replace the airsprings on a vehicle. I've done many Town
and Crown Vics, takes about 15 minutes, 25 on a Mark VII.
There are companies like Strutmasters and Arnott that sell aftermarket air
there are also coil spring conversion kits available for most cars.
I think the van did come with air bags , it's an LX, leather, dual air, 3.8
V6. do U think it's cheaper to replace the air bag system with a conversion
kit or just replace the bags?.....I do live in sothern NV I wonder like any
rubber part they wear out faster in a dry hot climat.
If you repair it now it will be fairly cheap, if you wait it can get
general, air springs are about $200\ea from Ford, $90\ea aftermarket. If you
compressor is about $400 from Ford and $200 aftermarket in addition to the
plus ~$50 for the dryer. These prices are without installation. A conversion kit
about $350 + installation.
If you replace the air springs now, they will likely outlast the van.
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