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Ford Windstar Warning Lights/Codes

dnspauldnspaul Posts: 3
My check engine light came on and it is the O2 sensors, which I have not replaced, but today my husband was driving it and he turned the corner and hit the gas real hard and now it won't go anywhere. When you put it in drive it don't act like it is even trying to go in. We weren't having any signs of transmission slipping or anything it just quit just like that. Some one please help this is my only vehicle and I have 3 young kids.


  • cmonkjrcmonkjr Posts: 1
    I'm having an Airbag code 16 (perhaps it is 61???) on my 2003 Windstar LX. Perhaps coincidentally, this code started right after we ran the van through an automated carwash. Any ideas on what that code means? Thanks for any help...
  • Hello all...

    I have a 2000 Ford Windstar SE... A friend of mine replaced the rear brake shoes (drum brakes) for me while on vacation in Florida. After driving the vehicle for about 3 or 4 trips, the ABS light goes on and the ABS system is disabled. Other than some brake squealing which is what we tried to eliminate before, no other noises heard. Anyone have any idea why the ABS light would turn on after replacing pads/shoes?
  • mlpntrmlpntr Posts: 61
    It's a common thing and has to do with a ground wire. Ford offers a fix kit for $10.
    The squeal you heard is because the back brakes need to be adjusted. You can do this easily and keep them in line by using the emergency brake every time you park.
  • jimlabjimlab Posts: 5
    Can you elaborate on this abs ground issue? I have a 2000 Windstar where sometimes the ABS light goes on, and other times it does not. I searched and could find nothing about this ground issue or the kit you mentioned. Any idea of where it is installed? Thanks.
  • genstymgenstym Posts: 1
    Reading all these messages its disturbing to see that Ford vans from late 90's up to mine - 2003 are STILL having problems with the ABS light coming on. What is wrong with Ford not fixing this problem?

    My light has been coming on now for about 6 months with the red brake light on, nothing else. Nothing seems to be wrong with my braking, thankfully. I take my car to Firestone, been going there 8+ years and trust my mechanic and they run a diagnostic test on it, dont charge me the $75.00 every time and they clear all the codes from the module assembly and they tell me the same thing that it shouldn't interfere with my braking system and that it should be covered under my warranty with Ford. Of course when I took it to my local dealer they put it under the diagnostic test, charged me $100.00 and within 20 minutes told me I needed a new ABS electronic system and it would be around $1800.00, not including labor.

    We are fortunate, this is the only major problem I have had with my van at 50,000 and I have been very happy with the Windstar. It just worries me that this has been going on for years and is still not fixed with newer models. I still don't like the idea that I'm driving around with this light on wondering everytime will my brakes work or not. I'm going to pursue the warranty issue with Ford and will post an update if I learn any new information to share with everyone.

  • jimlabjimlab Posts: 5
    On our van, the only light that comes on is the ABS light, no brake light. It also does not come on right away, if at all.

    From what I have read, the ABS module does a static test when the ignition is first turned on. It checks the resistances to the various sensors and if everything is within spec, it turns the ABS light off. After the vehicle reaches a certain speed, 10 mph rings a bell, it then checks the system dynamically looking for proper voltages from the wheel sensors. It also performs some type of a test on the actual abs pump and actuators. If this passes, the light remains off, otherwise it turns on.

    My ABS light seems to come on after the dynamic test. I get a code of c1185 which points to either a wiring issue or controller failure. The funny things is that it does not come on all the time.

    I hate to replace the module if it is just a simple wiring issue. I heard mention of the ground issue/kit and just wanted to get more details.
  • mlpntrmlpntr Posts: 61
    I haven't fixed mine yet. After $1000's spent keeping it running a light never seemed like a big issue when it gave no codes and the brakes worked fine. My information is from my uncle who worked for Ford and has helped me out when I get stuck on a problem with mine.
    He said that the problem is with an extra ground wire that just needs to be removed. I think the fix kit includes a wire cap. I will give him him a call and see if he can fill me in a little more on it.

  • jimlabjimlab Posts: 5
    That would be great if you could get some more details- Perhaps you could ask him if Ford has a TSB for this issue.

  • arnalaarnala Posts: 7
    Hello Jim
    I have the same vehicle same year. I could see a comment refiring this ground conection and a "kit" refeired for that. If you know how is that kit, please let me know. I try to fix this problem too.
    Arnaldo M
  • arnalaarnala Posts: 7
    Hello Steve
    Could you explain me what kind of kit it is?
    What I need to do?
    Arnaldo M
  • arnalaarnala Posts: 7
    Hi Melissa,
    Please let me know if you have news about it.

    Arnaldo M
  • We have a 1996 Windstar that the engine light recently came on for which seems to be running perfect. It has about 132k miles on it and my wife recalls that this also happened with about with 60k miles on it. However, we cannot recall if the light just went out automatically with the previous event or if we had to have someone turn it off, as there was no problem at that time with event at about 60K miles.

    My question is if anyone knows if there are cycles in mileage where the engine light may automatically go on (such as current approx. 130k) even with not problem. I hate to try to pay to chase this down if there is nothing wrong or light can be easily turned off if no actual engine problem. As it also turns out we are buying a new vehicle and cannot sell/smog the 1996 Windstar in CA with the engine light on.
  • If you don't want to pay to have the codes read, take it to your nearest AUTOZONE. They will hook it up and read the codes for you.

    If it is anything serious, they will let you know and you can take care of it then.

    Good luck to you.
  • has any one ever had the problem with obd2 codes 171 and 174 only showing up in the cold weather? my 1999 windstar shows no codes all summer and as soon as the temps drop below 50 the codes start coming up every few days. i turn of the check engine light with my code reader and the car runs fine with the light on or off. i have had the 02 sensors replaced and have tried dry gas thinking there might be condensation in the gas tank. any constructive suggestions are much appreciated. amy,
  • Mine is in the shop now. Mechanic believes it is the upper intake manifold gasket. The lower was replaced by ford twice before my extended warranty ran out. Apparently there is a bullentin out on this very problem. As soon as I know more, I will post.
  • we have a 98 ford windstar with the P0302 code it is a cylinder #2 misfire after looking here and another forum im convinced its the computer. what exactly is the computer? is it the Powertrain Control Module? if it is the PCM about how much does this cost. if it isnt the PCM what exactly is the computer called? this van has alot of issues like the water pump needs replaced(thats going to be a pain), the rack and pinion needs replaced(another nasty job), sway bar needs replaced, ABS lights on(probably sensors), rotors are warped- i could go on but i dont want to bore anyone to death, i could write a page of repairs ive done myself- but again with the boring thing. well if it is the PCM is there anyway to test it or do you just replace it? thanks for any info your willing to share.
  • Well, the 171 and 174 codes in OBD2 means your engine runs lean (more air). I thess there are two possible problems. One is the intake gasket or vacuum hoses leaks. The other is that the MAF sensor is bad. Replacing the O2 sensor is not a good option. Here is my recommendations:

    Keep checking your gas mileage. If the mileage runs good, ignore this code - it means nothing, and it will not hurt your engine.

    If the gas mileage is bad (less than 20 on highway), check possible intake leak.

    If the gas mileage is bad, and you have a rough idle at warm engine (stop at red light, or restart at warm), consider to replace idle air intale valve.

    If you don't have the above symtom, EGR valve or controller is to blame. It's your option to replace it or not. This repair only helps to clear the code. If you don't care about $100, replace it. Otherwise, keep going and you should be fine with the OBD "Check Engine" light on.

    Hope this helps.
  • Sorry - I posted a message about Code 171 and 174 follwing message #18.

    Check it and it should help.
  • I have Ford Windstar 96 , 3.8L engine.
    My Parking Light stays ON. I have checked fluid and wires too. Any expert advice on this issue or the only option is to take it to a technician.
    Does it make any problem if it stays ON as I don't feel any problem in braking or somewhere else. :blush:
  • selooseloo Posts: 606
    Parking lights or Brake lights?
  • Sorry for confusion. I mean to say Red parking light on the Dashboard which comes ON when we PULL handbrake .
  • mel007mel007 Posts: 1
    Codes P1537 & P1538 came up on my 1998 3.8 Windstar. Advance told me the codes mean that one or both of the Input Manifold Runner Controls might be stuck. Sure enough, one was bad. I replaced both and verified that they both work. But the P1537/P1538 codes have popped up again. Also, the engine idles rough after having run hard for a while.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
  • yqgyqg Posts: 1
    The warning light that indicates that an exterior bulb has burned out is on but all the lights appear to be working fine.

    Anyone any ideas on what else we could check? :confuse:

  • fausto_gfausto_g Posts: 2
    I have a 2001 windstar LX. I have been having problems with my (HAND BRAKE) and (ABS) lights coming on in my dash at the same time always. These warning lights come just 15 or so seconds after I start it up and sometimes more than that (5 minutes) . The hand brake works fine actually when those two lights are off yet and I use the manual brake "HAND BRAKE" light comes on; and the brake work fine too, What could be the issue?
  • if anyone has the ohms value for the egr pressure sensor please let me know asap its a 02 windstar :mad:
  • I had a similar situation and it was corrected by adding brake fluid.
  • selooseloo Posts: 606
    You may be leaking brake fluid from the master cylinder. This is a common problem, it will also affect your speed control and other systems. Check the sensor on the bottom of your master cylinder. If it is wet, you have found your first problem. If not, you may have a bad ABS ($1K plus to replace).

    Good Luck
  • fausto_gfausto_g Posts: 2
    Yesterday I check brake fluid level and it is ok (this is one of the root causes according several comments.....) and today in the morning I drove to my job (around 12 miles) and both lights never came on , this has never happened lights ussually come on after 1.5 miles aprox, is there some connector at the brake fluid tank that I could have touch and it was missconnected before?

    Before today I thought this issue may has to do with some part of brakes getting hot, these warning lights come on just 15 seconds or so after I start it up -- if the car was used recently -- ; or after 7 or 8 minutes after I start it up by first time in the morning when car is completely cold.
  • tauroreytaurorey Posts: 1
    The engine oil on my Windstar 2000 is changed but the warning light remains on. How can I reset that warning?
  • selooseloo Posts: 606
    You must reset this using the computer on the dash. The details are covered in your owner's manual.

    It is not difficult.
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