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Ford Explorer Maintenance and Repair



  • rblissettrblissett Posts: 1
    I just bought a 98 Explorer XLT. Test drove the beast twice, without incident. Took it home, and the next day when I go to start it, it sounded like someone came in the night and replaced my V6 SOHC engine with a diesel. I wish I had of read these posts before buying. Anyway, I did buy it off a dealership on a lease return, and so far they are claiming that they will have it repaired. However, it looks like it will be difficult to pin down the exact problem from all the posts I've read. If anyone knows for sure what it is please forward me the information. Likewise when I take it in tomorrow, if they can actually rectify this problem, I will post the answere for everyone else.
  • lmc5lmc5 Posts: 16
    See post #15 of 24. Well I took my Explorer in for my brakes again on 5-2-00. They were making a woofing sound when I turned to the left. This did not happen until they turned my rotars about a month ago. They did not charge me for this repair and they assured me that I would not be back for this problem. Well today is 5-11-00 and it is making the same noise. Has anyone had this problem before and if so what was it? I keep thinking that I just got a bad vehicle but when I read the other comments about the same problems, I think the problem lies with Ford. Like I have stated before, I have written a letter to Ford but received no response. Does anyone know what I should do next besides push it off a cliff?
  • explorer97explorer97 Posts: 1
    I have a 97 Explorer XLT with 6 cylinders with 45K miles on it. My engine also made what we're all describing as dieseling/pinging sounds. Mine started at about 37K and is now in the shop with a blown cylinder. There is no doubt Ford has been having problems with these engines. Got in touch with the Regional/zone manager as a blown cylinder for an engine with 45000 is rather uncommon and indicative of a defective engine. Evidently Ford agreed since they're picking up tab
  • bcollisonbcollison Posts: 24
    was your engine the SOHC V-6 or the push rod motor? What did they say caused the blown cylinder? Thanks in advance.
  • whinro2whinro2 Posts: 1
    We own a 99 explorer purchased new. It now has approximately 17k miles. Although, on the whole we have been pleased with it, we had a problem with the brakes that was not handled very well. With only a few thousand miles I started picking up a little vibration when braking. This progressed to the point where it was very noticeable and annoying. Being somewhat of a decent mechanic I knew that the rotors were probably the problem. When we took it to the dealer it was discovered that, indeed, the rotors were warped and needed to be turned. The aggravating part of this is that the brakes are only warranted for 12,000 miles and we had to pay for the repair. We were charged $106.00 for something that I could have done for $15.00 had I known what course of action would be taken by the dealer. Even more maddening was that the service manager blaimed us for the problem i.e. we are very heavy footed on the brakes. He also said that when we go to the mountains ( we ski a lot) that we have to drive differently. What a total crock! The vehicle is driven with kid gloves wherever it is driven. We do not hammer the brakes. In fact,it has not been subjected to even one panic stop. By their own admission the brakes showed very little sign of wear, still were warped badly. This is a definite contradiction. How does one abuse the the brakes so badly that they warp,but show very little sign of wear.
  • tomsrtomsr Posts: 325
    I just read in an auto column in the newspaper
    Explorers rotors can be warped if the wheels
    are put on with an air wrench and the torque
    setting of the wrench is too high.If you had your
    tires rotated at a gas station or tire place where they either don't know or care then that might be it.I once had my tires rotated at a tire
    place and when I went to change a flat I
    discovered a cross threaded nut and had to break the stud to remove the tire.I went back to the
    tire place and they apologized and replaced 2 studs that had been ruined.
  • tallimecatallimeca Posts: 6
    i read a post a while back about how someone said that their explorer seems to loose traction while driving over a bridge on the grates. Some one responded saying that that doesn't happen and how it is the person driving the vehicle that is making it happen. I must admit, I tended to agree with this person's rebuttle until the same thing happened to me on my brand new explorer last night. The ground was somewhat wet and at 40 mph, I should not be fishtailing........... I was told that these firestone tires that come on these truck are horrible and i should get rid of them. I'm gonna call the dealership this week to see about changing them in reguards to affecting any kind of warrenties.
  • sanandtonsanandton Posts: 342
    I continue to monitor this site even though I was able to get out of my last woeful explorer hoping to help some of those still driving them (there are a lot). My take on the firestones is they had excellent tread life, but were loud, rough, and produced noticeable road roar which only got worse as they got more miles on them. I suppose they are a hard compound tire, which might explain the tendency to loose traction on the grates mentioned previously, but also accounts for the extended life. I guess Ford chooses them for a mixture of possible uses (on or off road) and cheap price. I even had a few firestone dealers inspect them due to the noise. They told me that the noise was normal for this firestone tire and they were wearing in an excellent pattern. If you can afford new tires already, think about the Michelin LTX or HT. Great for on road situations, and much, much quieter. Good luck.
  • eldridge1eldridge1 Posts: 1
    I recently purchased a 98 Ford Exp XLT with 26000 miles. It has developed a noise that sounds like squeaky bed springs. I don't experience this sound all of the time, but it doesn't seem right.

    Has anyone else had this problem? I would like to know what to tell the dealer.
  • mugsy3mugsy3 Posts: 1
    I have a 97 Explorer V8 with 50,000 miles on it. Ever Since I purchased the truck, I have heard a constant clicking/snapping sound from the front suspension. The problem seems to worsen when braking. Many different Ford dealers have replaced the bearings, joints, cv joints, etc (under warranty) but the problem always comes back.
    Other problems:
    * The right rear door won't open
    * The intermittent wipers go at "their own pace" and not the selected intervals, they also increase speed under hard acceleration
    * Trasmission--The transmission gave out last month and I had it towed to ford for repair,,under warranty. They decided to call in an Ford "investigator" to see if the damage was driver induced. They then claimed the truck was involved in an accident and would not replace the tranny under warranty. We threatend to get lawyers and Ford Re-evouluated the claim, and fixed my truck, after two weeks. 3 weeks later, the transmission is shifting rough and the gear selector is very tight and hard to move. --Whatever.
    Any advice on the front suspension thing, other than blowing my car up or donating it to a Monster Truck Show????
  • lmc5lmc5 Posts: 16
    Well I took my Explorer in on Monday the 15th and told the service department that my brakes were still making a woofing sound and I would like it to be fixed because I am tired of bringing it in for the same problem. The Technician rode with me and he heard the noise. When we get back to the service department the service rep. that I have been dealing with asked me who details my car and I asked why. He said that the tire dressing that they put on the tires may be causing the noise. This is a crock of you know what. I told him the car has not been washed since they supposedly fixed it a few weeks ago. They kept the car overnight and called me yesterday and said it was definitely the armor all that they put on my tires when I get it washed. He said they are spraying it into the tire and it is getting on the rotors. I hung up the phone and immediately drove to the dealership and asked to speak to the service manager. I told him what his service rep told me and he just shook his head in disbelief. I told him if this was causing the noise wouldn't every dealership in the USA be backed up with people having brake problems and why is it making the noise on the left side only, I get all four tires cleaned at the same time. I also told him that they spray the dressing on a rag and wipe it on the tire. Then I said to myself, why am I explaining this to him because it has nothing to do with the problem. The manager assured me the car would be fixed and he would address this "tire dressing" issue with his rep. I have had nothing but problems with this vehicle and three Ford service departments but this takes the cake. I know whoever reads this will get a kick out of it.
    Has anyone else been told this? I am wondering if it is standard practice for Ford to treat their customers like idiots.
  • sanandtonsanandton Posts: 342
    Does anyone know how warranty repairs are paid for at a ford dealership? Are they paid on a case by case basis (ie: do the work, submit the bill, get paid for what you do) or are they paid an allocation for all repairs in a lump sum. They would then have incentive to keep feeding us the BS we always get in order to avoid warranty repair and avoid dipping into the service proffit. It seems they would be eager to fix things or at least make an attempt to do so if it was not a "HMO" for autos set up.
  • kc_flynnkc_flynn Posts: 45
    Friend of mine had a '96 Explorer. Needed whole new engine at 65,000 miles. He traded it in for a new Honda Accord LX. It's painful to think people spend $30K on a vehicle that gives them nothing but trouble for 65,000 measly miles. He says never again will he buy a Ford.

    The vast majority of Ford products are garbage.
  • tomsrtomsr Posts: 325
    My 98 Sport has 24k miles and a seam in the leather drivers seat cushion is pulling apart.Does anybody else have this problem? Am I asking to much to get quality for the $24000 I spent? I thought leather is suppose to be more
    durable than cloth. I hope nothing serious goes
    wrong before next year.
  • skiest1skiest1 Posts: 1
    I own a 1999 ford explorer limited.
    I have had similar problems.
    The latest problem was.
    Went over some railroad tracks on a main road
    and then it stalled, tried to start it right back
    but it wouldn't start, so I waited a couple of minutes then. it was ok after that.. Is this something that gets worse with age. I have 25,000
    miles on it..
  • sanandtonsanandton Posts: 342
  • Ok, heres the scoop on everyone with a vibration on left turns ONLY. Ford is aware of this problem and they have a fix. Why these 'mechanics' are saying Armor All on the rotors blah blah blah are full of le crepola. The left side power steering hose must be replaced under warranty, the exhaust system gets a vibration dampening bracket and the PCM gets reprogrammed to change shift points slightly. AND IT WORKS, had it done after starting through the service managers BS, 'all cars have inherent vibrations due to the harmonics of blah blah blah' God its like the guy watched one too many Steven Hawking specials on Discovery channel or something. I am pleased to say the vibration is gone, and although its not perfect, I am satisfied to date with the explorer. Another thing to watch out for is those cam chain adjusters, have heard those are problem areas too and can cause that knocking noise some may here at startup. Could also be piston slap from too loose of piston to wall clearance but you would have to find out for yourself.
    Get your explorer in and get it fixed...
  • Heard that replacement of MAF unit fixes this as well. Warranty? Do not know, but I do notice you can blip the throttle and get it to hang up before the revs pickup-sometimes. Anoying and dangerous for someone not expecting their motor to hesitate under a critical time. I am going to buy a set of matched fuel injectors, machined MAF and cold air induction assy, because it feels like a rich condition on the EFI mapping, but try to get anyone to check that out for you under warranty-NOT
  • staceytxstaceytx Posts: 1
    Sorry to hear of all the problems with the newer 97, 98, 99, 00 models. Perhaps trade down like me....

    I am on a budget and decided to trade my problematic 95 Saturn SC2 about a year ago for an 91 (yes 1991) Ford Explorer XLT. I am happy to report that after a little over a year of Hot Humid Houston Freeway is running strong (very strong) at 130 k

    Lucky for me - this was a solid buy for someone on a serious budget.
  • lmc5lmc5 Posts: 16
    I think my brakes may be fixed but then again I thought that a few weeks ago also. The service rep. that tried to blame my brake noise on armor all did apologize for making such a lame excuse for my problems. I got the vehicle back last week and I haven't heard the noise when I turn to the left anymore (fingers crossed). They replaced my brake pads and turned my rotors again. They only charged me for the brake pads (wholesale) and no labor charge.
    I am taking it back in today for the diesel sound that it still makes. They had to order the part for it, thats why they could not fix it when they had it for my brake problem. They said they are going to replace the "timing belt guides" and this should stop the diesel sound. They also said this is the fourth upgrade on this part they have had in recent months. That tells me they know they have a real problem with these guides.
    I hope this will keep me out of the service department for a while but going on the history of this vehicle, I think I will be back for something else. I plan on trading it next month so I hope it will stay fixed until then.
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