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Mike Kelly
Mike Kelly, Ford Mechanic
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 5471
Experience:  17 years experience as an auto mechanic, foreign and domestic. 5 years running my own repair business.
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Hi I have a Ford Escort Estate on an S plate,on tick over and

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Hi I have a Ford Escort Estate on an S plate,on tick over and when first starting engine really lumpy.The engine is clean as a whistle but have had to start topping up the water.At first I thought it might be the pressure cap blocked so I changed it and I also put new plugs on.When actually driving it runs smooth,but if I go over 60 the temp gauge starts to creep up any ideas?
Hello, welcome. My name is***** will do my very best to assist you with your question. I apologize if you have been waiting long for a response.
What normally causes this issue on these vehicles is a failing coolant temperature sensor or a sticking thermostat. What i would suggest as a first step is to have the thermostat boil tested and the sensor ohm tested.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi, Surely if it was a thermostat or a sensor I would not have heating which I do,the temp gauge works fine and why am I loosing water?Had this problem with my last Escort and never did cure it,even had the head skimmed.

You will still have heat with a sticking thermostat or failing sensor on this vehicle, these are the most common to fail on this vehicle. If these items are eliminated there needs to be a block test performed on the vehicle which test for hydro- carbons in the coolant system. This test is quick and easy and can be performed at most shops for cheap.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi, Why is engine lumpy then feels like its only firing on three until it warms up and why am I loosing water.You have not answered these questions that I first asked,surely the thermostat and sensor are not relevant to this problem?

This is because you have coolant/water entering the cylinder and the engine is lumpy until the coolant is out of the cylinder, this also explains the water loss. You will need a block test because the head or gasket is letting coolant enter the cylinder.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Thanks this is the same problem I had with my last Escort,is it expensive to get a block test and will that tell me whether its the head or gasket.If its the head that means I would have to have it skimmed is this correct.

The block test is only about a half hour of labor so it doesn't cost much. The block test will only confirm that there is exhaust gases in the coolant system which will mean the head or head gasket has failed. The head will have to be removed to determine if it's the head or just the gasket, if it's the head yes it will need to be checked for cracks and skimmed. Thank you.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Okay thanks any ideas on average cost to remove head and have it skimmed and rebuild?

Normally the labor runs about 4 hours and the head work runs 2 hours both based on the shops hourly labor rate.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Whats an average hourly rate Any ideas?

Normally 60 per hour.
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