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Ford Explorer Mercury Mountaineer 2005 and earlier



  • jposterjposter Posts: 21

    I'm a new owner of a 2002.5 XLT v8 4x4 Explorer. I've just recently noticed a wind noise at highway speeds (over 55mph), it appears to be coming from the passenger side (can't tell if its near the front window or in the 2nd row). The noise actually sounds just like a window is cracked or something (a rushing of air sound). I've confirmed all windows tightly closed and have inspected the trim molding around each window--nothing looks obviously wrong with it.

    Anyone else experienced this problem? Any solutions or diagnosis?

  • pnewbypnewby Posts: 277
    I have also noticed increased noise from the passenger side on my 2002 EB that is now a year old. I haven't had it back to the dealer, but when I finally do, I am going to ask them to align the right rear door. When looking from the outside, it appears to be slightly out of alignment. This would be consistent with the apparent source of the noise. When it was new, it was extremely quiet.
  • hennahenna Posts: 1
    I just purchased 2002 Explorer Sport and wanted to know if there are any problems I should be aware of. I love it so far.
  • cameleyecameleye Posts: 3
    I have a 2002 Mountaineer that has the same road noise from the right
    rear door, fender well area. I had the dealer check the door seals and
    everything he could think of. No solution was found, but the tech. told me that the way the fender well was designed keeps you from adding sound insulation. The only thing he thought of was adding a lot of undercoating in that wheel well.
    If you have the V-6, you might have noticed the vibration of the engine at stop signs or red lights. Mine is excessive and the Ford regional rep. has even checked it out. It's been 3 month's and no solution has been found. I'm not the only one, but the service manager said mine is the worst he's seen. If your thinking of a Explorer or Mountaineer, don't take a chance on the V-6. Get the V-8 or choose another manufacturer. That's my 2 cents.
  • jposterjposter Posts: 21
    My XLT is a v8, so the engine is smooth. The strange thing about this passenger side wind noise is that it just appeared after about 500 miles (2 weeks) of driving. When I bought the truck it had like 40 miles on it and was totally quiet.

    I've not noticed whether the right rear door appears out of alignment or anything. There is a definate air leak somewhere. Logically, it would seem that a fix would exist with replacing the trim molding around the door / window?

    I've also noticed a hum / wistle sound that appears to be coming from the passenger side front. This is very infrequent and seems to depend on the wind outside, speed and direction of travel. One person suspected it was the mast antenna.

    I had a very similar problem on my 2001 Accord and there was a TSB for it, the dealer replaced the rubber molding around the front windshield and the problem is gone. Makes me wonder if something similar couldn't be done with the Explorer?

    I've got an appointment with the dealer on Monday for the wind noise. Although I'm skeptical they will be able to "fix anything."

    Otherwise, I love my truck. The v8 is awsome and smooth. After two tanks of gas, I'm averaging 14.50mpg with a mix of city / highway driving with the AC on all the time and I'm not light footed when accelerating.

    THanks for any comments.

  • rysterryster Posts: 564
    My parents '00 Mountaineer with the 4.0L SOHC V6 suffered from an excessive engine vibration/shudder/rough idle for over a year. The dealer installed a new MAF sensor, IACV, and a new fuel pump (all on separate visits) to try to solve the problem. None of those fixes worked.

    Last weekend I was waiting for my Dad in his truck while he ran into a store for an errand, and the truck had a seizure of sorts. Engine RPM's went from idle to almost 4,000RPM, then dropped down to 500 or so. The Check Engine light then popped on.

    The dealer took the truck on Monday and read the code from the computer. Turned out to be a code they had never seen before, so they contacted Ford Engineering who indicated it was the second bank of oxygen sensors that needed to be rebuilt. The dealer performed the work and returned the truck the following day. The engine idles as smooth as can be and there is no more vibration or shudder to be felt.

    Seems like dealers need to have a code to read these days to be able to fix vehicles. The funny thing is, both my '00 Explorer and my parent's Mountaineer have had unusual problems that required the dealer to contact Ford Engineering because they didn't know how to fix it (the only difference being that Ford actually sent someone out to analyze my Explorer; my parent's problem was fixed over the phone). Either we got two oddballs, or it is more commonplace then we ever knew.
  • geoffd1geoffd1 Posts: 21
    Either we got two oddballs, or it is more commonplace then we ever knew.

    I think the more likely problem is that many dealers don't have the proper level of training for their technicians. The dealers gross about $100/hour from their employees but neither train nor compensate those employees properly.
  • kenttrudiwkenttrudiw Posts: 11
    Our V-8 explore, when hot outside 90 and up has a whine under the hood somewhere. The whine is the same as in first gear, only it lasts sometimes into 3rd gear. The dealer said it was the trans cooler kicking in longer to cool the trans. But the sound is very noticable in an otherwise very quite truck. Is this normal?
  • jposterjposter Posts: 21
    I've noticed the same on my 02.5 XLT v8, I think its the transmission or drive train somewhere. I haven't noticed it in just hot weather though. It may have something to do with the 4x4 system or something?
  • jposterjposter Posts: 21
    Just wanted to share for any of you looking for a floor mat for an 2002 Explorer, and not wanting to spend a bunch of money, Ford actually makes such an item. My local dealers were clueless about this item, I found it through It was like $25.00 and fits perfectly in the 3rd row.

    I looked at other options, aftermarket and it was going to cost about $100 to get something custom fitted. The $25 option worked well for me, since that back row will rarely see use.
  • jposter -- great tip, thanks! I was looking for a inexpensive black hitch cover and my dealer couldn't help me - of course, they had a $34 one! This site has the cover I was looking for ($8).

    I am interested in the 3rd row mat you referred to. Is the one described below the one you are talking about? (I pulled it off the site).

    1L2Z-7813182-AAD - Med. Dk. Graphite (zubo) Full Rear, 3rd Row, No Logo

    I don't want to get the wrong one. Thanks.
  • homer61388homer61388 Posts: 54
    My wife and I are looking at a new suv. This will be primarily her car. She will be trading in her loaded 1998 Chevrolet Blazer LT for a new vehicle. We were satisfied enough to consider another vehicle from GM. I guess we were lucky because I hear that some Blazers weren't as reliable as others. We had no problems, except the usual wear and tear. She definitely wants something bigger and just or more luxurious as the blazer. She does not want something too big however, like the suburban is too big for her to drive. We absolutely need a third row of seats, this time! We just had a new edition to our family so it would be more comfortable to have 3 rows of seats. We also would like to own a vehicle that would have adequate towing capabilities. Our blazer had about 5,000 lbs. of towing capacity which was adequate for hauling our trailers and our boat. Although it did ocassionally get winded. So a V8 would be nice this time.
    The mountaineer does seem more appealing because of its new safety designs and more robust engine offerings. We would like sufficient amounts of safety, performance, towing/hauling ability, reliability, and comfort. We were also looking at the Trailblazer and I think that there is a model that comes with a 3rd row of seats now. We also like the Durango, I think that it is getting redesigned soon so it maybe a good time for rebates and discounts.
    I am a little unsure of this trio's American reliability so I have also thrown the Toyota sequoia into the mix. The mountaineer and the trailblazer are brand new so they maybe prone to problems.
    If you could send back any input that would be nice!
  • dickypoodickypoo Posts: 6
    Roof racks are frequently the source of wind noise. Try repositioning the cross bar (try farther back first).
  • geoffd1geoffd1 Posts: 21
    The Toyota Sequoia is just about as big as a Suburban. An Explorer is 190" L, 72" W, 71" H. A Sequoia is 204" L, 78" W, 76" H. A Suburban is about a foot longer than a Sequoia but has similar height and width.

    I have the same issue with towing capacity. The crossover vehicles like the MDX are exactly what I want but they can't tow my 5,000 pound boat/trailer. If you don't have that much weight to tow, take a look at the new Honda Pilot. It's able to tow 4,500 pounds (if it's a boat). You don't get the torque of a V-8 but you're not paying for the fuel, either. The depreciation hit is also likely to be less with a Honda if you trade cars every 3 years.
  • kenttrudiwkenttrudiw Posts: 11
    If you put the Explorer/Mountaineer up against any compact SUV and even some bigger ones tahoe? The Explorer comes up on top of most spec's, towing, comfort, safety, interior size for each of the 3 rows, ride & handling, price etc... The V-8 just stacks up very well against about anybody!
  • jposterjposter Posts: 21
    To: steelersfan - I too ordered the black hitch cover from oemfordparts (it was like 7.50), their shipping was very reasonable I believe it was around $6.00 for the hitch cover and floor mat (came UPS ground in about 3 days and they sent me tracking info by email). Your part number appears to be the correct one, I ordered mine in the parchment color though. It was a very good experience with this dealer they are out of Texas I believe and I will definately get my future accessories from them.

    Wind noise update - I haven't messed with the roof rack yet. I was getting a wind noise, sounded like a cracked open window, on the passenger side. The dealer diagnosed a defective rubber molding around the door frame (passenger side). They've ordered the part and I should get it installed next week. I hope this solves the problem as the noise is driving me nuts.

    homer61388 - can't speak as to the Mountaineer, but we love our 2002.5 Explorer. I also considered the Trailblazer, the new Honda Pilot (3rd row was a joke and towing capacity stinks) and the Acura MDX. I thought the Trailblazer was a little too rough compared to the Explorer. With the v8, the towing ability and smooth power is hard to beat in the Explorer. Although the Trailblazer has more horses, in my opinion, its not nearly as smooth as the ford v8. Although I have heard the Envoy / Trailblazer will soon be offered with a small v8 option.

    Right now Ford has like $2500 rebates on '02 Explorers (pretty hard to beat), plus interest rates are quite low. I think we got like 5.4% over 60 months through (the easiest way to buy a car in my opinion, they send you a blank check you fill in the amount to any licensed dealer).

    Good luck.
  • jra77jra77 Posts: 2
    Has any else noticed this vibration? I have the V8 AWD. Any solutions? Tire balance and alignment OK. The dealer conveniently doesn't notice it. I recently drove about 200 interstate miles and it nearly drove me nuts. Help!
  • jra77jra77 Posts: 2
    Has any else noticed this noise? A very loud rumble lasting a couple of seconds just after start the vehicle. Enough to turn heads. Intermittent occurrence. Any solutions? The dealer says this is normal. Ya right, like anyone would buy one if it occurred at every test drive!!!

    Dealer also says this occurs on Windstars.

    Does Ford always look the other way? Where's the service?
  • jposterjposter Posts: 21
    I read about every review I could find before buying my new Explorer. Look around here on the Edmunds site, I believe an issue that some of the reviews I read was a loud transmission based noise / vibration in the Mountaineer. I think it has something to do with the AWD vs. the 4WD in the Explorer?
  • jv312jv312 Posts: 32
    I have towed 5000# in and around New

    England w/ my 2002.5 Explorer and have NO complaints whatsoever. If you need more, here's a link to Trailer Life magazine's review of 2002 Ford Explorer V8.

    They also did one in their latest issue on the V6. Also, as far as a Toyota Sequoia being just about as big as a Suburban? I recently had to rent an Excursion which is similar to the Suburban. Well, that Excursion makes any Sequoia, Durango, Trailblazer, heck, even Expedition small. I saw them all while tooling 2000 miles up & down the east coast this week. A nice, comfortable ride, but its BIG. Anyway, sorry to get off topic, happy trailering.
  • Here's an article from TrailerBoat Magazine on towing with the V8 Explorer, Durango, and Envoy.

  • maryzonamaryzona Posts: 1
    I purchased my Sport Trac in February and love it. Only problem I've noticed is accelerating forward after being in reverse a vibration or shuttering is noticeable for the first couple of seconds. I am not sure it is the tranny, just assuming so. Also, the warmer the truck, the more noticable the sensation. I am not a very mechanical person and would like to sound like I know what I'm talking about before taking it in. Anyone else have this problem? Thanks for any help
  • icefan1icefan1 Posts: 14
    For all the Ford nay sayers who infect these boards spewing their anti-American, Ford stinks, Honda-Acura can do no wrong propaganda and to those who are rightfully and intelligently are seriously considering purchasing an Explorer...
    I have had mine for two months (02.5 XLT)and have put on 2700 miles and have had NOT ONE PROBLEM. This is an excellent vehicle. Yes, I did my research. Yes I test drove the competition. Yes I would recommend this car to anyone. Thank you and have a nice day.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    ... let's tone it down. Incendiary diatribes like that disturb the peace.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion without having to pass any kind of litmus test for patriotism. We're discussing vehicles, not infectious diseases.


    SUVs; Aftermarket & Accessories
  • gregb882gregb882 Posts: 75
    Then I think you need to get over to the Synthetic Oil board - those guys appear to be infected! :)
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    lol, every few months I like to go over there and talk about my 7,500 mile oil changes with dead dino :-)

    SUVs, Vans and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards
  • adptwinsadptwins Posts: 2
    I have the following deal pending at a local Ford dealership:

    2002.5 Explorer XLT Flex Fuel V6. Running boards are the only option. MSRP is $31,520 with destination charge.

    Invoice is $28,676.

    I will be paying $28,571, minus $500 Ford Targeted e-mail rebate = $28,071, @ 0.0% over 60 months. No advertising charges.

    Option to purchase the 7 year or 75K Extra Care Warranty with $50 deductible for $1,015, dealer cost.

    I choose the 0% over the $2,500 rebate.

    Is this a good deal in today's market?
  • jv312jv312 Posts: 32
    Sounds good. I purchased my first Ford in April. It matches yours (02.5 XLT, V6, 3.73 axle, tow pkg, MSRP $31,520) I looked for about a month, really researching prices and found the best price locally. I paid $28320 minus $1500 rebate. (The rebates are sweeter now!) No other charges except the taxes (ouch!) Final out the door cost was $28519. I didn't buy the warranty & I used my credit union financing because I wanted to double up on my payments. I used Edmunds calculator to see what worked better for my financing situation. Its a good tool. Good luck with your purchase!
  • richmodrichmod Posts: 4
    My Mountaineer is currently in the shop for the second time to try to resolve the vibration issue. There is a technical service bulletin (TSB)that seemingly recognizes the problem at My dealer did the repairs mapped out in the TSB -still didn't work. My dealer also conveniently said they thought it was fixed and didn't notice it anymore, so I went for a ride with the service manager and the mechanic together - it was too obvious for them to deny. So now they apparently are waiting for some special instrument that will isolate exactly where the vibration is coming from so they can fix it. I figure I'll go through the motions and if they try four times to fix it and can't, my states lemon law kicks in and I get a new truck. I re-drove an two identical vehicles to mine (AWD V-6)on their lot and neither of them had the problem. I even dragged my salesman into driving my vehicle and the one on their lot so he could see the difference and vouch for me.

    I know exactly how you feel - I've gone on two long trips since buying the vehicle two months ago and the vibration angers me to no end. A brand new 30,000 SUV shouldn't feel like a tractor at highway speeds.

    Good luck.

  • sirlinsirlin Posts: 2
    Like to know what is the price anyone has recently paid for 4X4 Explorer in the DFW (Dallas-Fort Worth) area? Thanks.
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