View Full Version : Multiple issues 98 Conti

August 15th, 2014, 11:42 AM
I just bought a 1998 Continental. Seller had put used engine with 46K on it and a lot of new parts. He had problems, got discouraged and sold it to me cheap. I believe the issues it has are relatively simple, but I am about to find out. First, the air ride airs up the right side, but not the left. Both airbags feel in good shape. Left bag does not get air, as it is empty and flexible. The compressor airs up the system and shuts off like normal. Could the solenoid for the left bag be not working and that causing the bag to not get air and inflate?

Second issue is the power steering is out. I see fluid leakage on the pump side and due to the grinding (loud) noise, it seems the pump is out. How do I get to it to change it? Seems like an easy replacement if I can just get to it.

Final issue is the message center does not display in the dash cluster When I push the button (display, etc.) they beep correctly, but no display on the dash. I pulled the fuse for the message center buttons and the buttons still beeped and fuse is good (fuse #1 in interior of car). The rest of the instrument (digital) panel lights up and works.

This car is amazing. Not one dent on it, just needs repaint because clear coat is worn off on top edges. Interior just needs new headliner (some holes). Otherwise just a good cleaning/ detail and it is gorgeous. By the way how easy is it to get out the headliner and change it?

I have a 94 TC that is still going strong with about 160K on it and a 2 year old paint job.

As always, thanks for all of the awesome help!


August 15th, 2014, 05:24 PM
Ok, I figured out the solenoid on the left air bag was not allowing the compressor to air it up. Removed the solenoid and pushed it with a screwdriver to free it up. Sprayed a little silicone in it, silicone greased the orings and back together it went. Both air bags aired up as they should and leveled out the car. Yippie! A few minutes after I parked the car, both bags deflated. I know the air bags are good because the right one held before. I was not able to get the air line off the left solenoid eventhough I worked at it. I think I broke an air hose. Next step is the soapy water test to find the air leak.

Still waiting to find out how I can get access to the power steering pump to change it. Thanks, George

Desert Stallion
August 29th, 2014, 06:29 AM
pop the solenoids back out and replace the o rings on the solenoids, there's 3 of them, two smallish size that fit the end of the solenoid and a large one that fits over the solenoid up against the solenoid body.

Or spray them with soapy water and look for the air leaks. Another test to try is air up the system and then turn off the air suspension. If it still drops, it's a leak in the bags somewhere. If the car doesn't drop, it means that the computer is receiving a signal that the car is sitting high, and it responds by lowering the rear of the car. This usually equates to a bad ride height sensor.

Ford power steering pumps are noisey to begin with, especially when they're dry. If you haven't noticed any weird steering issues, then the pump and rack are probably fine, so drain the reservoir and replace the hoses and seals.

I think I've already responded to one of your posts about the dash cluster not working, so go read that reply, we'll stay here and wait for ya'.