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November 27, 2013

1988 Town Car AC Concerns

Hello Bill -

I have a 1988 Lincoln Town Car with 70K on her. I just moved to Southern California from New York and since the car was new, I never used the A/C. It is cold in New York! But, now I need it. The car is California smog ready and runs great. I get 15 miles City and 22 Hwy. The heater works great.

The A/C has been serviced twice in order to correct the following problem. The A/C System was converted from R12 to R134a and charged at two different times. The A/C blows cold for a minute then continues to blow hot. If I accelerate the car, the air from the vents blows even hotter. Also, when I accelerate the air flow from the vents will diminish. When I let up on the accelerator or run the car at a steady speed the proper air flow returns and will continue to be hot. It can become hotter than using the car's heater. Help!




Hello Anthony -

Your problem is a common occurrence and has been addressed on the blog several times. When there is a vacuum leak or leaks in the Climate Control system the sensor will begin to default to the heating mode. This will appear when the engine is under a low vacuum condition during acceleration. The leaks are best found with the use of a correct vacuum diagram along with some knowledge of the system. The leaks can develop at any location or component where the vacuum is routed. Another common leak is at the system check valve and vacuum reservoir. Continuing to blow hot when the vacuum returns however may indicate a sensor failure as well but must be diagnosed properly as suggested above. We can help you with any necessary manuals or parts etc. that you may require.



November 18, 2013

1995 Town Car Brake System Questions

Hello Bill,

I have a 1995 Lincoln Town Car with 325K miles on her, had her for 10+ years now.
When I start the car, no ABS light on, but usually by the time I carefully back out of the driveway, the brake system will gurgle very loudly from what seams to be from within the dash and the brake pedal will go down some (not all the way to the floor, just about an inch or less) and the ABS light will come on. If all this doesn't happen when I 1st back out, it usually will within a couple blocks travel from the house. I'm not loosing any brake fluid, pads still have meat on them. I left the car with the Firestone shop, didn't happen to them. Suggestions?




Greetings Chris -

First of all congratulations on the 325,000 miles on your Town Car. That is a lot of trips to the Coffee Shop.

If your brake pedal is dropping somewhat when the brakes are applied and you are absolutely sure that no brake fluid leaks exist then I would first suspect that the brake master cylinder may be failing. When this happens a portion of the brake fluid bypasses to the other side of the failing seal when you apply the brakes and causes the pedal to drop instead of fully applying that section of the hydraulic brakes. This can cause a warning light to illuminate. After the brake pedal is released the fluid can return to the correct side of the seal and no external leaks can be found. If this is the case a new master brake cylinder will be required. A complete and accurate inspection of the hydraulic brakes is a good idea at this time as these vehicles are known to develop leaky lines and hoses etc.

At Lincoln Land we commonly hear under dash "gurgling" complaints that are caused by air in the cooling system and the rush of churning liquid through the heater core. If you are sure that the sound from your dash is in the brake system then I would be suspecting brake fluid in the booster or a malfunction in the A.B.S. system. In the event that your technician suspects that a problem exists in your Anti-lock Brake section a proper diagnosis as per the factory Shop Manual of that system will be required. We can help you with information from the shop manual if this becomes necessary but competent brake shops will have their own approved manuals.



November 8, 2013

1966 Continental Knocking

Hi Bill,

I have a 1966 Continental, I have just recently redone the cooling system, including a new water pump, rebuilt radiator, and 180 thermostat. The idle is good and temp is stable at 190, but now there is a knocking sound on the passenger side that was not there before the update, any ideas would be great. Thanks.



Hi Paul -

From your description it is difficult for me to know if you are describing an upper level knock or something deeper inside the engine. If it is clearly from the right side the best approach could be for you to try to isolate the location with the use of a stethoscope. You then can disassemble items at or near that location for closer inspection. If the sound seems deeper within the engine an oil pressure reading should be taken with the engine at full operating temperature. This will help to determine engine bearing and or oil pump condition. Another idea would be to let a good known engine rebuilder at your location listen first hand to the sound and advise you further.



November 4, 2013

1989 Lincoln Town Car AC System Question


I have a 1989 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series.

I'm told that I need a new Diverter Valve for my Air System. The Heat and AC work fine individually, but I can only use one or the other! If it's hooked up and plugged in, the AC works strong, but can't be controlled and I have no heat. It's either on all the way or I have to turn it off. Vice Versa, if it's unplugged, the heat works strong (but I do not have AC access), but again I can't control the temp. It's either top heat or I have to turn it off!

If it is the Diverter Valve, how much should it cost to replace?

Thank for your time and advice.



Greetings Michael -

After reading your post several times it sounds to me that your hvac control sensor also known as "sniffer sensor" (above the glove box under the dash pad) has failed in the cold a/c position. When the Servo unit vacuum (under the dash) is unplugged the system defaults to the maximum heat position. These sensors are available new.

Automatic climate control systems however should be diagnosed on scene as per the maintenance manual to positively identify the failed part. The above diagnosis is based on past experience and on the content of your email.