Question about 1998 Ford Escort

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Timing issues thought timing belt was going out but took apart it was ok car still clanks like out of time but it is not was running with a little mis fire for a couple of weeks but ran ok shut it off at a resturant came back out started it thats when it started clanking like a timing belt but took off valve cover everything seems ok there

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This is a common issue in ford escorts, and I hate to say it but your cylinder head is bad.
I've personally seen this issue on over 20 ford escorts ranging from 1991 to the present.
The cylinder heads are made of cast-aluminum and are only so durable. If you like to drive your car hard, or race it around, your cylinder head will eventually break apart at the valve seats, you will lose compression, and drop metal shavings on to your pistons.
The easiest way to determine if this has happened, is to do a compression test on the cylinders. On the 2.0L SPI engines, your compression should not be below 100psi (and 100psi being absolute minimum) on any cylinder.

In most cases you will not be able to rebuild your cylinder head. I do recommend replacing any piston that has had metal shavings drop on it, although I have seen (what I consider idiots) people grind the metal shavings off the pistons and reinstall them. The more you drive the vehicle with this issue, the worse your problem will be in the end.

I hope this answers your questions, and I wish you good luck on the repairs.

Posted on Apr 22, 2009

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