Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Are you in the market for a new car and having a hard time finding affordable options? A reporter would like to speak with you; please reach out to [email protected] by 2/26 for more details.

Ford Windstar Problems



  • swlsuswlsu Posts: 1
    My 2000 Windstar experienced an odd electrical malfunction. While idling in a parking lot at night the car stalled and would not restart. The radio, lights, etc stayed on even when the key was turned off. Would not restart, just grinding the starter - never engaged.

    Thinking it was the battery, tried to jump start - nothing changed. Disconnected the battery and had it towed to local shop. Shop originally thought they had fixed the problem with a shorted wire that they changed. After pick-up an drive home, the car did the same, blowing the #17 fuse. The shop has had the car for 4 days now and has not determined the cause - going through all of the electrical system.

    Any ideas?
  • basesbases Posts: 1
    I had the same problem. Same car, same model year. It turned out to be a speed control pressure switch on the master cylinder. They end up leaking into its own connector and shorting out...telling the cruise control not to turn on. $15 improved version from Ford!
  • csprigcsprig Posts: 1
    First off, thanks to whomever for the creation of this board. Now on to my problem. I just left the auto repair shop. I had taken my 98 to have the oil changed, radiator flushed and to address an ongoing problem. When I start the engine cold it runs wonderfully. However if I allow the engine to heat up and then turn off the van, when I restart the engine misses badly. The repair shop said I have a misfire on Cyl. #5. OK. He changed the spark plugs and wires, the fuel filter, the ERG? sensor, air filter and a vacumm hose. They test drove it, said it ran great. I go to pick up the van and the engine is still hot. Same problem as before when I start it. Drove around the block, returned it to the repair shop. They feel the next step is to run more tests, compression and one other. Says the repair will likely run 1600 dollars. That on top of the 650+ dollars spent today for what best can be prescribed as preventive maintenance I have to decide my next step. Does anyone have any experience with this type of problem. Any feedback would be appreciated.
  • wubatwubat Posts: 1
    I want to change the power supply to the cruise control to being on the accessory switch. This would limit the fire hazard to only when the car is running. Would changing the power supply cause only problems that I am not aware of? Does changing the cruise control power take care of the pressure switch or is that on a separate supply? Has anybody seen any procedures on how to rewire this mess?
  • navisnavis Posts: 1
    I have a 96 windstar, my check engine light stays on, I have put it on a machine to see what the problem is, and according to them I have no problem can anyone tell me why the light stays on and what do I need to do to turn it off?
  • stalpamstalpam Posts: 1
    how can i fix it? sommeone told me that there was a manual switch to change fromheat to air. where is it? can any one help
  • cdg110cdg110 Posts: 1
    I think saveabuck sidestepped an engine fire. This is the same switch that is being blamed for engine/auto/house fires. A bit of leaking brake fluid, and the unswitched 12 volt line with a 25 Amp fuse (at least in my 1996 Windstar), ignites the brake fluid. Ford has some options on how this could be fixed besides replacing the switch. I think a small cable with an inline fuse might be possible, could even be installed by the customer. Remove connector from switch, place new cable on switch, attach original cable to now fused line to switch. Could be a couple minute job. If the switch is leaking, that would have to be replaced also. Thanks saveabuck !
  • frostiefrostie Posts: 1
    Does anyone know where the door ajar sensor is for the driver side sliding door on a 99? Courtesy lights and door ajar icon are not lighting up when I open this door. The passenger side has a traditional plunger switch, but I cannot find where the switch is on the driver side.

    Also, how do you change the bulbs in the courtesy lights mounted in the front doors? It looks to me like you have to remove the door panels, which seems kind of complicated. Thanks.
  • I had that problem last winter on my 1998 Windstar with 149,000 miles on it. It would run fine but if I stopped and turned it off it would not start again. I would wait 10 minutes to 30 minutes and then it would start again. I finally ended up taking it to the dealer and they replaced a switch on the transmission. I will see if I still have the receipt and what the name of the part they replaced was. I have had a love-hate relationship with the WS since the day I picked it up from the dealer 7 years ago. The sad thing is the service people know me by name due to my what seems like quarterly visits. I like driving it, carries all of the hockey goalie and player gear I could wish, pity that it has been less than trouble-free.
  • jackkptsjackkpts Posts: 1
    I have 1999 Windstar with 101K. The CEL has been on for the past few months so I went to Advanced Auto and had it read. The error code was P0401 (EGR problem). Based on other posts about this most likely to be caused by a faulty DPFE, I replaced this with a new black plastic one. When I was done I disconnected the battery to clear the CEL. Now the pinging problem I had about 15K miles ago is back. I don;t know if it's related to the new DPFE or if, when I disconnected the battery, the engine computers were reset. (Wish I would have just gone back to AA and had the CEL cleared so I could isolate this problem).

    Any thoughts about what to try next? I read that the MAF may need to be cleaned. Thanks for your help!.....JGK
  • kitch4kitch4 Posts: 5
    Sorry to ask this but my 1998 windstar is having the same problem stalling and sputtering at idle. I have a missfire on #6. I have cleaned and checked everything on the engine over the past 6 months and nothing. Look at post #1866 list of what I have done. The tsb for the 98 windstar is this the Isolator bolts, front valve cover, lower intake gaskets, upper intake gaskets. This is what I have learned just on the net but I can not find the site with the tsb without paying. Do you have the exact stuff that needs to be changed. My front valve cover has the hole in it.
  • schlepschlep Posts: 1
    I had the same problem a few years ago with my '95 Windstar. Replaced both oxygen sensors and have never had the problem since. Still driving it today. Best of luck!
  • kitch4kitch4 Posts: 5
    I ran into something very strange today. I bought oil stabilizer fuel treatment. I put all that in and when I got home I tried something. When the cel started to flash I played around with #5 and #6 fuel injector connectors. I took #6 off no difference then took #5 off engine drop a little. Then I put #6 on #5 no difference. Then I put #6 back on and was playing with it with #5 off. All of a sudden #6 started to fire after about 30 sec. Then I put #5 on the engine would run on all 6 for 15 sec then die off again. #6 misfiring again. Has anyone had this problem if so what was it.
  • rugmankcrugmankc Posts: 133
    Mine stalled when making slow, low speed turns. It was the Throttle Positioning Sensor? It sits on top of the manifold and is the highest item on top of the engine. Three inches long and tubular. Mine is a silver color. You may have other problems, but this fixed mine. I heard there is a computer reprogram that may also fix this. I had to go to the dealer to get this resolved. Your dealer should be aware of the problem it is fairly common in WS's. Good Luck.
  • haulthault Columbus OhioPosts: 130
    My thought is the same as yours. The original settings may have somehow defaulted back. However I can't believe the updated flash should be wiped out by a battery disconnect. I would check with FORD and see if they will reflash the computer for free. I have a 2000 w/46000 miles and am considering trading for a Freestyle, before it is out of extended warranty.
  • jracy185jracy185 Posts: 3
    This is a common problem with many fords. A common side effect is a fire starting at the switch which has power on even when the ignition is turned off. Bottom line. . . if you have this type of switch don't park your car in the garage or close to the house.
  • jracy185jracy185 Posts: 3
    It's a magnetic switch. We have the same problem. Fixed it once quite a while back - started up again at about 110K miles. Not certain where exactly the switch is, though.
  • jracy185jracy185 Posts: 3
    Find a new shop! If there mechanics are so good that they can only read the diagnostic code then you don't want them. Find a mechanic. Good luck.
  • mcrockermcrocker Posts: 3
    I have a 1999 Ford Windstar and out of the 4 power windows that I have 3 have stopped working. The driver's side and the 2 vent windows in the back have just stopped working. They were working when I first purchased the vehicle on June 21, 2005. I am having trouble trying to figure out which fuse (or fuses) may control these windows. Can someone tell me exactly which fuse (or fuses) may be causing the problem or if there is something else that may be causing the problem (short in wiring?).
  • rugmankcrugmankc Posts: 133
    The correct part on the low speed stalling is the Air Bypass Valve. Same location as in previous post. Also, cleaned throttle bore and replaced vacuum line to positive crank case valve. Problem gone and has not come back. Done in December 2003. Sorry about error on part.
  • jclark16jclark16 Posts: 2
    Hello Prguy, The other 2 oxygen sensors will be easy to find after U go up under the van. The first one is located on the exhaust pipe under the van close to the middle of the exhaust pipe. Now the other one is a tough one. You will have to make sure U jack your van up far enough and please stable it because U will need to be under it completely. This one is located pass the transmission up by the other pipes that lead to the transmission and engine. You will see it just look up after U are all the way under there. It is a tight spot to get to.
  • guyl1guyl1 Posts: 1
    I have a '99 Windstar with a 104k. My ABS light comes on intermittently. When it is on, the brakes work fine. I would be happy if the light would stay on all the time (ABS are disable when light is on). When the light is off, the ABS will activate when I am just about to come to a complete stop. What I would like to do is save some money and just disable the ABS. I've called a few dealers and they say you can't do it. Question, how do I do it. There are 2 ABS Modules in the Power distribution box. The manual says that these are high current fuses. Can I take out 1 or both of them out?
  • jasonajasona Posts: 2
    On 7/2/05 I was leaving downtown when my a/c, speedometer, odometer, tripometer and cruise control all failed. Additionally, the ABS light is stuck on. I took it to the dealership and they are in the process of ordering the parts to replace a blown fusebox and will need to rewire cost 1800.00. I called Ford Motor Company 1-800-392-3673 to seek assistance from them and spoke to Jean who told me basically, no warranties, no recalls, no assistance. I spoke to a supervisor Donna who said she has final say and Ford will not assist me. She stopped short of accusing me of tampering with the wiring saying, "You've had the car for so long that you could have made repairs which caused this to happen." I have had 2 Fords and 2 Mazdas (made by Ford) and have had trouble (EXPENSIVE REPAIRS) on all of them. Buyer beware, and do not expect help from Ford, they do not care about the customer. If anyone else has experienced this problem I encourage you to contact Ford at the number above, enough calls could prompt a recall. If you have already paid for the repairs they will reimburse you.
  • mikec123mikec123 Posts: 6
    Hi All,

    I'm back to the board. Its been a couple years since my 99 SE 's tranny went with 38K mi on it. At that time ford stepped up and replaced the transmission and extended my Power Train warranty at a cost of $500 to me. So a few months after my new 'freebie' warranty expired, the CE light is on!! Took in to get the code pulled at Autozone and it was the P0174 - System too lean left bank. It's at the dealer today and sure enough, they say it needs the redesigned valve cover that will prevent oil from traveling into the intake manifold via the PCV Valve and ruining the internals of the intake manifold.
    The dealer quoted me over $600 for parts (valve cover, gaskets, isolater bolts) and labor. The labor included the work needed to install the above parts and to scrape all the crud that builds up in the EGR ports.
    For any of you that have not had this problem, there was a design flaw (my opinion - the ford rep won't accept blame 'our engineers are always redesigning perfectly good parts' , he says - yeah) with the original valve cover that let oil splash up into the pcv valve. Ford apparently discovered this long ago but did not notify owners!! So if you've got a '99 (maybe other years??) you drive around with a valve cover that's slowly letting oil seep into the intake and then after a while oil fouls up the intake manifold until the point that the oxygen sensors pickup the lean condition and the check engine light pops on. So then instead of an easy valve cover replacement, you've got to disassemble the intake and replace parts in there too.

    At any rate, I called the customer service number, 1800-392-3673, but the rep was just giving me the run-around and told me there was nothing he could do.

    So it looks like I have to eat the $75 diagnostic fee and then I'll get the parts and do the work myself. When I get the parts list I'll post again. I'll also post a link to a very good 'how-to' page that shows how to do the repairs listed in the Ford TSB for this problem.

    Has anyone else had any success in getting Ford to cover any of the cost of this repair (for codes P0174/P0171) for an out-of-warranty windstar?
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Why don't you have the stored trouble codes retrieved then repair the problem?
  • mgraphicmgraphic Posts: 1
    Ok... I'm a newbe here... so any advice would be appreciated... I own a 2001 LX... When trying to fill the tank I can only get about a half a gallon of gas in before the nozzel kicks off... Anybody have this problem and if so what was the fix?
  • mikec123mikec123 Posts: 6
    I've got a '99 SE and I have the same problem. Usually it takes a few attempts and then it fills normally. I just try to change the angle of the nozzle a little bit and then start the pump again. I remember seeing a TSB about it when I was looking for info on one of my more serious problems. You can probably find the TSB with a good google search. The dealer service rep might even be able/willing to look it up and give you the info over the phone.

    Good luck and post any info that you find!
  • mikec123mikec123 Posts: 6
    'Hate' sounds about right to me! After reading your post I feel better that the 'only' things I've dealt with is a transmission that failed at 38K and now I've got to replace the valve cover and change the gaskets and isolater bolts in the intake manifold. So I guess I should feel good that our van has only needed $4K in repairs that are a direct result of defective parts! How's that for diminished expectations??

    -Good Luck!
  • sbjjsbjj Posts: 2
    I have a 1999 Windstar and the speedometer, ac, abs light, ck engine light, and sliding doors will not open if car is on. I have not been to the dealership yet b/c I can not afford there prices. I was just told that it was relay that was blown but since all of that other stuff is not working i am thinking I may have the same thing. I am going to check on the cost of someone else other than the dealer rewiring everything. Although I made a complaint againt a shop that put my cd changer b/c that stuff did not stop working until they put the changer in the car. Thanks for the sugg.
  • sbjjsbjj Posts: 2
    You are not alone. My 1999 Windstar do not work either. I have been told it is a fuse but took it ford and they claim they don't know which fuse it is either. They suggested that I buy there $22.00 owner's manuel to find it in the manuel. When i got the manuel and took it to the tech he looked me in the face and said it has no numbers on it he don't know either. He went on to say they will have to replace all the fuses and of course you know the charge was out the water. And I agree when you have to hold children, diaper bags, keys, bookbags you don't have time to pull on a handle. In the mornings during school session; we hold up the parent drop off line b/c we have to put the car in park, turn off the ignition just to open the door and let the kids out. It's embarrassing and take more time than I have most time.
  • 75birdman75birdman Posts: 1
    I have a 1998 Windstar, and I fixed the problem by replacing the rear air control switch in the dashboard. The system is run by vacuum, and when the switch starts to leak, it isn't able to port the vacuum to the correct side. :lemon:
  • joel6joel6 Posts: 1
    Have 2 brand new twin boys so I bought a used MiniVan. I just bought a used 2000 Windstar SE with 75,000 miles on it. Registered it and even got it inspected.

    BUT, I can't open the hatch!! Grrrrrr!! The key doesn't open it, and there doesn't seem to be a button up front to open the thing. If I hit the unlock button on the key fob a couple of times I can hear the latch unlocking, but the latch doesn't seem to work in back. All the other doors seem to operate just fine. I had my mechanic look at it for 10 minutes and he couldn't figure it out.

    Anybody else have a similar experience and/or advice? Any help is much appreciated.
  • My Mom Owns a 2000 Ford Windstar LX Earlier Today My Mom Tried Rolling Down the Passenger Side Window From The Driver Side But then She asked my sister to try her switch it worked Just Now it wont go back up and All The other Windows Work Just fine it has Nothing to do with the fuses Because If it was all the windows would be out. So Can Some one help me out with this delma. Please
  • mcrockermcrocker Posts: 3
    The fuse that controls the PSD (Power Sliding Doors) is fuse #6 in the fuse box on the driver's side. This fuse (15 amp) also controls the radio, the rear radio controls, Remote door entry, and CD changer (if you have it). Once you replace this fuse you will have to reset the PSD (resetting instructions are in the 1999 Owners Manual on page 89). If you don't have the manual you can download it FREE from the Ford website (
  • bgillinbgillin Posts: 1
    Where do I begin! I took the wagon to Autozone and got the following codes. P1537 Idle speed control or connector, P0171 Too Lean Bank 1, P0174 Too Lean Bank 2, P0153 Bank 2 o2 sensor, P0455 Evap Leak. Now all of these codes were shown but I'm not sure if the problem name is correct. Before I go buying a bunch of parts I hope someone might be able to shed a little light on what might be going on that would cause all of these to occur together. If they seem independent of each other, which should I tackle first to see if fixing one fixes others. Thanks to anyone who may help.
  • mhawesmhawes Posts: 1
    I needed to know about fuses for my cruise control - there is a listing and map of all your fuses in your user's manual for your car - if you were like me and bought used and did not get a manual ... go to, find the "owners" link and under resources you can get a pdf file of your owner's manual. ;)
  • mcrockermcrocker Posts: 3
    A friend of mine, who works on cars, found the problem with the windows. It seems that some of the wires from the control box (on the driver's door) had worked themselves loose.
  • jasonajasona Posts: 2
    Do you know a funny thing.......the dealership did not know which of the fuses were blown and I had to tell them what I found out from Autotire. Once they talked to me about it, they confirmed that Autotire was correct. Only then were they able to detect the rest of the problem. I would think the FORD dealership would know the Windstar better than Autotire. They still have my Windstar at least until tomorrow. The service dept has been kind and got me a loaner car, but I think I'm through with Ford. Old Henry Ford would be pissed and rolling over in his grave if he knew all of the crappy ill-functioning vehicles his namesake was producing.
  • I have a 96 Windstar and my front A/C Vents are stuck on defrost all the time. When i turn AC switch to ac, max ac, front, floor, front+floor combo, it always stay to defrost. Turning to off does work.

    Is my switch bad, or the flap inside the vents not flapping to switch air directions ? I heard these things are vaccum hose driven. Could i pull the hose out and start pluggin them up to see if the flap inside the vents move around ???
  • haulthault Columbus OhioPosts: 130
    I traded my 2000 Windstar w/46000 miles in on a Freestyle. I never had many problems with the Windstar, but it was 5 and it was our main family vehicle so I wanted something newer. Best wishes to all of you.
  • kitch4kitch4 Posts: 5
    Would anyone know if a lean condition on bank #1 would cause a misfire on #6 cylinder, or are they two separate things?
  • jdoudneyjdoudney Posts: 1
    I hope that I am putting this message in the correct spot. I have a 95 Windstar, that until the other day has never givin a single problem. But, I came out of the house started this thing and noticed a very strong fuel smell. The shop said that the # 2 injector was stuck open, probably because of a head gasket failure. Well, we replaced the injector, didn't get any water out of the cyl. and it is still just puking gas stright out of the exhaust. Any help would greatly be appreciated.
  • jjkuestjjkuest Posts: 1
    Sometimes the automatic doors on my WS does not close all of the way. When this happens, the dome lights remain on and by morning the battery is dead. In all of the previous cars that I have owned, the battery never died from leaving the dome lights on over night :confuse: . Today I did some checking. When the dome lights (and floor lights) are on, my battery is putting out 6 amps to the vehicle. When the ignition, lights and all accessories are off, the current draw from my battery is 0.70 amps (this seems high also). So I have 2 questions. Does anyone know of the adjustments that I need to make to the doors so that they close all of the way everytime? (I am always on the level surface of my garage when this happens) and Is a 6 amp current draw from the battery nominal (or acceptable) for the interior lighting of a car? This seems like a lot to me. If my calculations are correct, that is equivilant to a 72 Watt light bulb.
  • aforceaforce Posts: 2
    Try cleaning the contacts on the doors. I had the same problem with my '96 WS and thought the doors weren't closed, or that the door latch was bad. Apparently lubricant gets on the contact that tells the car the doors are open/closed, and it sends a faulty message that the door(s) is/are open, when they are not. Use contact cleaner spray that is used on electronics. Easy fix! I did this 2 years ago and haven't had a problem since. Most of my hair has grown back from where I pulled it out, prior to finding the cure, too!
  • aforceaforce Posts: 2
    Try cleaning the contacts on the door latch. These contacts get dirty with grease from the latch and send faulty messages causing the lights to stay on inside the car. Use contact cleaner that is used on electronics. Works like a charm!
  • beth59beth59 Posts: 1
    I am having problems with my odomether, Speed Nometer and my air condition just went out and my ABS light is on. I don't have my manual book so I don't know what fuse it would be, any help.
  • msmacymsmacy Posts: 1
    Recently a friend of mine had brake work done on her Windstar. Initially was charged 797.00 to replace front rotors and th epads. Subsequently the rotors proved to be defective & were replaced free of charge by the dealer - while there she was given the invoice that was to be given to Ford by the dealer for the replacement work of $330.00 which included labor. So the question is - is there any law about extreme markup in the service area - In other words, what they originally charged me $797.00 for compared to the amount they submitted to Ford of $330.00. Is this excessive mark-up - is there any recourse?
  • wanewbeewanewbee Posts: 1
    Had the same problem, twice. Ford replaced CPM, no more problem. Having read further, i understand they could have re-programmed it instead. $350. each time for replacement.
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    The speedo, odometer, and ABS light are probably related to a speed sensor circuit problem. You'll have to have an ABS capable scanner hooked up to retrieve the stored diagnostic trouble codes.
  • I was wondering if anyone can offer advice for my transmission problem on my 2003 Windstar. I seem to be having some sort of "hunting" problem as when I am driving and reach between 2500 rpm and 3000 rpms the rev counter flucuates between these to values and the care jerks as if it cant decide what gear it should be in. The car also seems to lag on upslope roads and seems to hesitate to change down unless significant throttle is applied. Any advice would be greatly appreciated
This discussion has been closed.