How to Replace the Thermostat on a 1997 Ford Taurus

by Lisa WamplerUpdated November 07, 2017
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Items you will need

  • Phillips screwdriver

  • Replacement thermostat

  • Thermostat gasket

  • Box Wrench

The great thing about a thermostat in a 1997 Ford Taurus is that when it fails, it fails safe. This means the thermostat fails in the open position, which allows radiator fluid to flow through the vehicle preventing the car from overheating. This helps to protect the car, but it doesn’t do much for keeping the driver warm in the winter. Fortunately, swapping out a thermostat is not an overly expensive venture and is generally considered to be a simple do-it-yourself fix.

Locate the upper radiator hose and trace it to the intake manifold that is located on the top of the engine on a Ford Taurus. The housing that the hose is connected to is the housing that has the thermostat inside of it.

Remove the band clamp that connects the radiator hose to the thermostat housing with a Phillips screw driver. Once the clamp is loosened the hose can be pulled off of the housing.

Remove the bolts that hold the thermostat housing to the intake manifold with a box wrench. Be careful not to lose any of the bolts as they will be reused.

Pull the old thermostat housing gasket seal off of the intake manifold. and replace it with a new gasket.

Pull the old thermostat out of the housing. There are no bolts holding it into place. It simply sits inside of the housing. Pay attention to the orientation of the thermostat and place the new thermostat into the housing in the same manner as the old one.

Bolt the thermostat housing back to the intake manifold using the bolts that were previously removed. Reattach the radiator hose to the thermostat housing by tightening down the band clamp.

Turn the vehicle on and check for leaks where the radiator hose is attached to the Taurus' thermostat housing and where the housing is bolted to the intake manifold. If the hose leaks, simply tighten the band clamp until it stops. If the gasket leaks, you can attempt to tighten the bolts that hold the housing to the intake manifold. In some cases a PVC gasket sealer must be used. Gasket sealer can be purchased at an auto parts store.

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