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Lincoln Aviator Maintenance and Repair



  • This is my first time post so please bare with me. I am at the sole owner of a 2004 Aviator, V-8, 4.6L, with 116,000 miles. To save time I won't list the various repairs/maintenance that have been performed over the past 8 years; I will stick to my current dilemma. My area is Dallas, Texas.

    After my check engine light came on Mon, 4/2, I went to Auto Zone for help with the diagnosis code. It showed P0308 and P0316 (was told that 316 always goes w/308.) I took it to a local, reputable auto service repair center that had serviced my car for a CLY #3 misfire Oct, 2011. At that time they replaced one ignition coil and replaced all the spark plugs. Their recommendation was to replace the the remaining coils, which I did. They also replaced all the spark plugs since they were under warranty.

    BUT, THIS DID NOT FIX THE PROBLEM. I realize the coils were probably going to have to replaced eventually, so I'm okay with doing that. They suggest having an Injector Service Wash/Flush before making the decision to replace the injector (which I'm assuming is #8.) They don't have the equipment for this type of service and I'm probably going to have to do it at the dealership. After researching this service I understand it could be beneficial. (Also, let me state a mechanic friend of mine suggested Goo- something. We put it in the gas tank with about a 1/4 tank and I drove the highway for 45 miles, but no change.)

    1) Do I go to the expense of the Injector wash/flush of $145 (which means I have to go to the dealership which I really don't want to do!) or should I skip the step and go ahead and have the injector replaced? Should I replace them all while they're in there?
    2) If I go to a dealer, any recommendations in the Dallas area? preferably closer to downtown.

    My car is in great shape and I'd like to keep it for another year or so if possible. Thanks much everyone!
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,665
    The new COP on cylinder 8 could be bad but first see if the replaced all of the boots - cylinder 8 tends to run hotter and can damage the boot. If the boot wasn't replaced then that's a likely culprit based on what I saw on google. And they're cheap. If it's not the boot then try swapping the COPs around and see if the problem stays on cylinder 8. If it does then just change the injector. I wouldn't bother with a flush. It's either the plug, the boot or the COP (or an internal problem with cylinder 8 - a compression test would verify).
  • terry645terry645 Posts: 16
    Sounds like a broken hinge which we get the whole tailgate out of alignment. I had this happen. Replaced the hinge...about 10 minutes. All OK
  • Welcome to a $5500 engine rebuild. If you look for posts of mine and others several years ago (3 cars ago for me), you will find a TSB on this vehicle that requires an engine rebuild. Cylinders 7&8 go bad because of the split valve cover (bad design) on this high performance engine. My Aviator (bought new) was 2k out of warranty (52k miles) and I had to fight Ford all the way up to Bill Ford's office to get them to pick up 2/3rds of the cost of the engine rebuild. This is a known problem. Take the truck to a LM dealer. They know. Unless you purchased an extended warranty.. you are screwed. I doubt your Aviator is worth $5500 at this point. BTW, the dealer replaced my coils and such before they "discovered" the need for the engine rebuild which you will HAVE to do!

    I rewarded Ford by walking from the brand after 5 Fords in a row and now am a happy (if not bored) owner of my second Lexus which by the way I thought and now can emphatically state is the least expensive car to own on the road. They have such a high resale value (unlike Lincoln Mercury) that my trade in allowed me to buy a new Lexus for only 10K after 3 years).

    I loved by Aviator even with all the problems. My Lexus is boring but it is totally reliable. I do 20K miles per year!
  • Oh boy! My 2003 Aviator has the check engine light on and the code is for catalytic converter. I've replaced all the coils multiple times. Hasn't been inspected in a while because of the check engine light. Worried about having to replace the catalytic converter and what it will cost. Also live in North Dallas. 2003 Kitty Hawk w/ 111,000 miles. Car is beautiful and comfy but totally unreliable, had the rear window problem, cd player doesn't work and coil problems like most of you. WILL NEVER BUY A FORD OR LINCOLN MERCURY AGAIN!
  • TO BOSTON CIGAR: First, thanks for the very informative reply. You have saved me time and a lot of emotional grief. I was really beating myself up about agreeing to the recommended coil replacements, fuel system cleaning, etc. that were done prior to this "bombshell" diagnosis.

    Park Cities Ford in Dallas, TX, found "compression loss on bank 2, cylinder 8 has 11% loss." They did not recommend the engine rebuild with the high mileage I have.

    Sounds like I'm in the market for a new car. What kind of Lexus do you own? I was thinking about a Toyota Four Runner, too.

    Thanks you again!
  • This is GINNY'S MOM again (ref msg #952 or 955)

    Before I venture out into the auto sales world, I thought I'd double and triple check that I've checked out every possible solution. Before a major surgery a second opinion should always be sought. So, you all are my second opinion...

    Below is the dealership's diagnosis on my 2004 Aviator with 116,200 miles. It has new coils, plugs, and had a fuel system flush.

    "Customer states check engine light is on
    Cylinder 8 losing compression.
    Verify concern. Time for EEC Diagnosis
    Time to perform power balance and verify misfire. TIME TO PERFORM RELATIVE


    He said the computerized compression test tests the injectors, spark plugs, and coils. Then they did a manual compression test to confirm the cylinder 8 compression loss.

  • la2004la2004 Posts: 2
    Did you have any luck finding out what your problem was, my 2004 is doing the very same thing. Ford Dealer is clueless :(
  • terry645terry645 Posts: 16
    I bought my Aviator new in '04. Over the years I've come to this site for guidance with various issues that came has been most helpful...thanks to everyone.
    The Aviator seems to take a real whipping on this site and I have no doubt that most of it is deserved. My Aviator now has 171K miles on it and I drive it everyday. I've had the usuall minor issues that come with every vehicle, but have not had one problem that even approaches the things I see on this site. I guess all Aviators are not made equally.
  • TO: akirby, message #952

    1) What's a "boot?"
    2) Did you see my most recent post regarding 11% loss on Cylinder 8?

    Would like your feedback. Thanks
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,665
    Loss of compression on cylinder 8 is the classic sign that the head is toast. The boot is the rubber cover around the coil and plug.
  • I am on my second RX-350 by Lexus since the Lincoln Aviator. The Lexus RX-350 is one of the cheapest cars to own on the market because of the high resale value.... if you purchase and do not lease. I am even smarter now in that I purchase a CPO and save one year of depreciation. Boring car.. but safe, dependable and very very high resale.

    I was able to get Ford to pay 2/3rd the cost of the engine rebuild. It was 2K out of warranty. They should have picked up 100% of the engine rebuild because this is a known problem with the engine.

    I will not own another Ford/Lincoln Mercury product again because of the way they treated me.
  • This is what I wrote on the subject 4 years ago!

    File a claim with the NHTSB.

    Replying to: uvsrw3 (Apr 26, 2008 11:20 am)

    The problem you are having is that cylinders 7 and 8 are fouled and you need an engine rebuild. The head/valve cover on this V8 comes in two pieces. It fouls around 50k miles and needs to be rebuilt. Ford should recall the engine and fix it gratis. There is a TSB on it. Ask a Lincoln Mercury Dealer and they know the TSB. All engines of this type, Ford puts in Ford Mustang, Navigator and Maruader fail. Mine failed at 52k miles and they covered part of it but not all of it. My 6th and last Ford btw. The dealer will quote $5500 if beyond warranty. They will pick up part of the tab if you push. Time for a class action??
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,665
    The failure rate is still relatively low - my guess is way below 10%. You only hear about the ones that fail but there are tens of thousands that never have a problem.

    Yes, it's a known problem and I would like to see Ford step up with an extended warranty since it's an engineering flaw. But from a business standpoint I understand their position.
  • Did you ever get a solution to your problem? i am having the same problem

  • I have the ability to lock and unlock my doors with the remote but I can not lock or unlock the doors using the auto lock switches on the door handles.

    Got any solutions??
  • ginnysmomginnysmom Posts: 5
    The only solution would have been a new engine. I had 11% compression loss on cylinder 8. Sold the Aviator to Carmax and bought a new car.
  • I have a 03 Aviator and I have to continuously press the brake until I hear a click before I can get it out of park. I had the switch under the pedal fixed (mechanic suggested) still does not work. Also when I’m sitting in park the truck feels like its going to cut off. Any Ideas?
  • Lots of stuff written about the problem which is the "brake actuated shifter lockup in park" on Lincoln Aviators is erroneous or more nearly total BS!
    The brake light switch on the brake pivot pivot when depressed sends 12v to a cheapo solenoid that pulls a piece of lamp chain on the drivers side of shifter connected to a plastic cam that then gets out of the way of car shifting out of park. All you do is pull the little plastic access panel as described in the owners manual off and you can see it. It can always be unlocked by pushing it forward with a screwdriver. Mine worked intermittently until I pulled the gearshift in out of 1st gear a bunch of times and lubed it took all of 10 minutes. The shifter assembly can be pulled out in half an hour or so using simple hand tools and the manual that shows how to do it costs less than $50 on ebay and their are videos as well. The cam gizmatchie can then be tied or screwed out of the way. USA shifters in San Diego rebuilds these pieces of junk and sells rebuild kit. Again right in the owners manual are instruction on how to release the gearshift with just a screwdriver!!
  • do the buttons light up when any one of them are pressed?
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