Signs of World Economic Meltdown

1) Germany Gold Repatriation
2) China Buying Gold
3) Russia Selling Oil and Buying Gold
4) U.S. devaluing dollar with QE
5) Japan stimulus (devalues yen)
6) Venezuela devalues it’s currency by 47%
7) Argentina food shortage and price freeze
8)) U.S. Suspends Debt Ceiling Limit
9) U.S. Government buying billions of rounds of bullets

How to replace a 1997 Ford Taurus 3.0 V6 water pump

Replacing a 97 Ford Taurus 3.0 v6 Vulcan water pump is not very difficult. You can do the job with a few basic hand tools in about 2 hours.

I replaced my Taurus water pump one night starting at 8:00PM in my driveway, in the dark, using a droplight. I finished up around 10:00PM, which included back flushing the heater core and flushing the radiator. The job would have been much faster in the daylight, plus the flushing added more time and effort.

NOTE: When replacing the 3.0 Ford Vulcan water pump on the 1997 Taurus, you DO NOT have to remove the alternator.

If you want to purchase a replacement water pump online, you may want to look at these options:


1997 Ford Taurus 3.0 GL Water Pump Replacement Procedure

1) Remove the plastic radiator reservoir on the passenger side. One bolt and one nut holds the tank in place. Remove the big pinch clamp and larger hose on the reservoir bottom (that goes to the radiator). Remove the 2 small hoses on top (2 small pinch clamps).

2) LOOSEN (but don’t remove) the 4 small 12mm bolts in the water pump pulley with a wrench.

3) Remove the  belt tensioner. Undo the belt by using a wrench on the pulley bolt, to pivot the tensioner to make slack in the belt. Remove the belt. Unbolt the tensioner. This is a 15 or 16mm bolt.

4) Remove the water pump pulley (bolts were loosened in step #2 above).

5) Remove the idler pulley. Remove the single bolt and the idler comes off.

6) Unplug the crank sensor to get the wire out of the way.

7) Remove the two little support brackets that attach to the water pump.

8 ) Remove the hose from the water pump. You can also remove the lower radiator hose if needed.

9) Loosen all the bolts (11 bolts) on the water pump. Some are small, some are large. Do not remove the bolts yet.

 10) Lay your NEW water pump nearby. Remove each bolt from the old water pump one by one. As you take them out to the old pump, insert them into the correct hole of the NEW water pump. That way, you will not get their locations mixed up!

11) Once al the bolts are taken out, remove the old water pump from the engine by gently prying on it, WITHOUT disturbing the timing cover underneath it.

12) Lay the OLD waterpump beside the NEW water pump. Compare them to make sure they look the same! Move all the bolts from the NEW pump to the old pump, keeping them in their correct locations.

13) Scrap/clean the old water pump gasket from the timing cover (where the old water pump was attached).

14) Coat your NEW water pump gasket lightly with some gasket sealer. Put it on the bottom of your new water pump.

15) Use the bolts (in the holes of the old pump) to bolt the new pump onto the engine. After you install ALL the water pump bolts… carefully tighten them down evenly, in a criss cross pattern. Do not over-tighten/strip the bolts.

16) Finish installing all of the other items in reverse order of disassembly.

Hopefully, changing your 97 Taurus 3.0 water pump yourself, will save you time and money. It is NOT a difficult job at all. The hardest part is cleaning/scraping the old gasket and keeping all the water pump bolts in the correct holes! Don’t forget to plug the crank sensor wire back in!


How to Keep Your 401K Growing the Fastest

To keep your 401K growing the fastest, you will need to 1) monitor your investment performance on a regular basis to 2) be able to shift your investments for maximium gain and to limit losses during critical times.

Many people trust others (who they do not know nor have never met), to manage their life’s retirement savings accounts. Would you hand over your check book to someone you don’t know… to help you “manage” it? Well, your retirement account is far more important and hopefully far larger than your checking account. Do not trust anyone with your money and therefore, your future. Always remember… nobody cares more about YOUR money than you!

Now, that we have an understanding that YOU will manage your own account… you acutally have to manage it. Don’t just throw your money into a few investments and hope for the best. You need to do some research first. Here is a quick and easy way to pick your investment choices: use Google finance.

Goto Create a portfolio called 401K. Add all the available fund symbols of your 401K to that portfolio. Now, the neat part… once you have your portfolio created, you can click the checkboxes beside the fund names to run a Compare chart!

With your compare chart, you can quickly see which funds are doing the best over a particular timespan. I usually look at the 1-3 month range, find the top 3-4 performers to 1) frequently change my future contributions to those top performers and 2) ocassionally rebalance my account accordingly, as needed.

Overall, this will help you limit losses of funds that continue to drop and keep you investing in funds that perform.


How will QE3 help the Economy?

The Federal Reserve announced on Thursday they would begin buying up 40 billion dollars per month of mortgage backed securities to help strengthen the U.S. economy. Known as Quantative Easing 3 (QE3), the Fed’s plan raises questions and concerns from many economists as the stock market rallied. That Thursday, the DOW closed up over 200 points.

In my opinion, any sane person should question QE3. The “printing” of money to manipulate the market has to have some of you opening your eyes. Please note that money is not actually printed these days. Paper dollars and metal coins are too material, time, and labor intensive (they cost too much). Since most financial transactions are now electronic in this digital age, more zeros are simply entered into the computers to pump up the funding accounts (quick, easy, and free). These accounts are then used to purchase the shares containing mortgage backed securities from the open market.

Overall, this will have several effects. It will drive up the price of real estate based stocks and help grow a market bubble. The Fed’s idea is they want to keep the housing market stable (buy up the risky mortgage backed securities=stable housing market) AND pump up the stock market (the only bullet left in their gun). Overall, this is another way to open the door wider, into full market manipulation (not that they would ever let us know). After all, a booming stock market means political stabilization and growing economy, right?

Well, the Dow at 13400 right now, sure seems fishy. How could that be possible in this economy? You guessed it… not likely without some help… a lot of help. The question is, how long will the rally last, after the real investors see the full picture and pull out?

Just remember back to the 2008 economic collapse… how fast things spiraled down with the housing bubble. Well, the stock market is digital… it runs much faster than missed mortgage payments and foreclosures.

Welcome to MoneyDecisions101!

Many years ago in the mid 80’s, I bought my first car when I was 14 years old. I used my life savings… $1200. This was mainly money that I made cutting grass every summer in my neighboorhood since I was 10, but also included money given to me as allowance and on birthdays. The car was a 1970 Ford Mustang Mach 1, a car that I still  own 27 years later.

Was it a wise decision to purchase that car? Well today, according to it is worth between $24,370 and $59,440!

Not a bad decision for a 14 year old. If I knew then what I know now, I should/would have purchased and kept more old mucle cars. You see, it is good decisions such as this, that gets you ahead in life… just try to avoid making bad decisions.