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Ford Windstar Problems



  • Could anyone here tell me where I might get a wiring diagram or schematic of the electrical system for my 98 Windstar GL? Every now and then my van becomes possessed. The windshield wiper light comes on the bell rings and the doors lock and unlock several times. Then it goes away. At other times the open door light comes on the locks won't work at all. I'd like to disconnect the sensors, but leave the power locks in place.

    (Just for the record over the past couple of years we've redone the power steering, front rack, transmission, new engine, serpentine belts and alternator....)

    Thanks for information.
  • I have a 97 windstar. Was driving the other day and it made a noise. i let off of the gas to see if it would stop. the car died. i can start it up but it is hard and then has no power to drive. any help :cry:
  • I had the same situation with my 96 Windstar. After about 6 months driving like this, running pooly when warm and check engine light flashing after restarting a still warm engine, I fianlly took it in for service.

    They found a bad fuel injector. Replaced it and now all is well.
  • Hi Melody,
    Just replaced my tranny at 112K. Acutally rebuilt with 2 yr warranty via local shop for $2800 so $4200 seems like too much.
  • Yup, same thing. Our '98 has groaned for probably 20,000 miles now. How much was your steering pump replacement? However I now find the steering has a tendency to stay on-center - it feels like there is a 'notch' somewhere in the linkage that I have to overcome before the van will start to turn. You ever felt anything like that?
  • UR speedometer cable needs to be replaced. They are plastic now a days, the square shape wears down they start to slip like a bad socket, then zing like crazy at the speed o meter connection behind the dash.
  • Had the same problem once, replaced the fuel filter that sits on the chassis before the tank. It was clogged with ethonol particles and trash
  • good4ugood4u Posts: 18
    We're looking into replacing our 1997 Plymouth Voyager (127K) ---------which has had MANY mechanical problems------- ($8800 worth of work done to it) with a 2001 Ford Windstar with 87K on it. We're not sure if it's the right move, though. It's at a small dealership in town for a very good price, but have you had to have a lot of repairs with your Windstars? Just curious because I don't want to buy another lemon. :lemon:
  • cptpltcptplt Posts: 1,075
    Run and buy another Chrysler or a Honda or Toyota or even GM minivan! Windstars have major problems with tranny and engine. I have had a 95 and 00.
  • good4ugood4u Posts: 18
    thanks for the advice.... we ended up not getting the Windstar.
    Word to the wise though: Don't buy a Chrysler minivan!!! All their other cars are fine, but NOT THE TOWN AND COUNTRY OR VOYAGER. They're crap.
    I didn't know Ford Winstars have all those problems.... maybe looks are deceiving! We loved the one we test-drove, but maybe there were some underlying problems. Thanks for letting me know! I know now to look for the Hondas and Toyotas! :shades:
  • The '01 Windstar should make a good runner for you. We have had a '96 and '00 with good service from both.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    Of course you will have to pay thousands more to get the honda or toyota...probably much more than what the difference in repair costs will be. My impression is people really overpay for toyota/honda "reliability"...especially in the case of used cars.
  • I have a 2000 windstar and the drivers side armrest fell off completely yesterday. Do you have any idea how to put it back on. It unscrewed completely.

    Thanks Mark
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    Following up on my own comment about the Honota costing thousands more...

    A 2001 Windstar SE with 87,000 miles has average retail value of $6287, according to edmunds. A 2201 Odyssey LX has average retail value of $8698. So the extra reliability costs $2400 in this case.

    Meanwhile in the TCO area of edmunds the 5 year cost of maintenace and repair is $6987 for the Ford and $6640 for the Honda. So the savings is only about $350, due to the greater reliability. Note that the M&R costs are based on 2002 models, as that is as far back as edmunds goes.

    Overall the average Windstar saves a net of about $2000, if edmunds data is accurate.
  • rossross Posts: 17
    Obviously no one at Edmunds has ever owned a Windstar. Or read any of the posts here.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I think it is that you hear from those who have a $3000 or $5000 repair and not from those who do not.

    Suppose one ford vehicle in 10 has a $5000 repair while for Honota it is 1 in 50 that has that $5000 repair bill, that translates to an average extra repair cost difference of $400 per vehicle. I think it is probably something along those lines is the basis for the difference in average repair costs.

    If so, then you have to ask is it worth spending $2400 now to reduce my chances of possibly paying that $5000 later. It could be put this way...would you rather pay a sure $2400 now and have a 2% chance that you will have to pay an additional $5000 later or would you rather just have a 10% chance of having to pay the $5000 later.

    There is an assumption that all Fords are crap and all Honotas are bulletproof. I have found very interesting reading on the Accord problem board here. There are people posting there about huge repair bills on relatively new cars, too.

    The edmunds figures for repairs are averages and are supposed to based on cost of extended warranty for the vehicle in question. I'm not a fan of extended warranties but I wonder...what kind extended warranty could one buy with the $2400 savings from buying the Ford?
  • haulthault Posts: 124
    I agree with the analysis. A lot depends on how long you intend to keep the vehicle. If you have an extended warranty it helps also. The percentage of high costing repairs per vehicle would be nice to have before purchasing. The quality of all new vehicles is questionable. All the "plastic" weight saving parts have been disastrous in most vehicles. I wouldn't keep any modern vehicle past 10 years or 120,000 miles.
  • micellemicelle Posts: 1
    Have a Ford Windstar 2000 with 108K miles. Runs in Drive, but would not auto shift gearup to higher speeds (max is about 25) unless I manually shift lower to gear 2, then it only runs as fast as 40. Check engine light also came on. Battery was weak bcos the van has been sitting for a while, but appears to charging back up.

    Later checked transmission fluid and added some Mercon V. Runs a little faster in Drive, but soon started flashing O/D light.

    After about 2hrs of resting the van, started the van, the O/D light did not come on again even when driving but the speed issue returned - runs in Drive, but would not auto shift gearup to higher speeds, runs as fast as 40 in gear 2. Check engine light still on.
    Please advice.
  • sherylpsherylp Posts: 1
    we just took the alternator out of my 2003 windstar and can't get the belt back in without an extra 2 inches. any ideas on what ere doing wrong? I think extra isn't good.
  • paulk4paulk4 Posts: 2
    hi having some what the same ploblem. this is my first time on this web forum did you get any answers :blush:
This discussion has been closed.