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My son just bought an '86 LX Hatchback with the 3.8. It has a little over 105,000 miles on it. The car apparently sat for several months before we bought it. On the way home, we noticed white smoke coming from underneath and it smelled like burning oil. When we arrived home, I saw that there was a fairly steady drip of oil coming from somewhere. I'm not a Ford guy (don't hold this against me but I'm an AMC fanatic) so I don't know anything about Ford V6's. First, is the 3.8 a reliable engine? Where are the most likely places for an oil leak? Is there anything else I should know? Is there anyone on this forum from Las Vegas? Thanks for any help.


Mark
Boulder City, NV
 

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sounds like oil could be coming from your sons oil pan or oil filter and dripping on the exhaust, hence the smoke.
 

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bluestinger said:
My son just bought an '86 LX Hatchback with the 3.8. It has a little over 105,000 miles on it. The car apparently sat for several months before we bought it. On the way home, we noticed white smoke coming from underneath and it smelled like burning oil. When we arrived home, I saw that there was a fairly steady drip of oil coming from somewhere. I'm not a Ford guy (don't hold this against me but I'm an AMC fanatic) so I don't know anything about Ford V6's. First, is the 3.8 a reliable engine? Where are the most likely places for an oil leak? Is there anything else I should know? Is there anyone on this forum from Las Vegas? Thanks for any help.


Mark
Boulder City, NV
Man, I miss AMC . . . I've been looking for an AMX for years -even the '79-81

the 99+ 3.8L is the most reliable engine since the 5.0L. Pre-99 3.8s I wouldn't touch.

If you've got an 86 3.8L, swap it out with a 99+. It's not worth messing with. It's the same basic block.
 
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