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Ford Explorer Mercury Mountaineer 2005 and earlier



  • I've got an 03 Explorer XLT, it's great, like it very much. Recently, there are whistles come from outside of the passenger side. It happens occasionally, mainly on local road at low speed. I am guessing it comes from the antenna, but not sure. Anyone have the same experience? Thanks!
  • jv312jv312 Posts: 32
    a few people here complained about the whistle & road noise on the passenger side in previous posts. I have an 02.5 Explorer and mine has minor noise but due to the channel vent visors I added. The antenna is a good guess, but if you look at some of the older posts from summer you might get some quick answers.
  • heintz1heintz1 Posts: 52
    FWIW, I'm currently using ANCO's "winter" wiper blades (awesome) and they definitely create more wind noise at high speeds, since these wiper arms are shrouded in rubber, rather than being of the more "open" architecture of summer blades.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    you get much more wind skipping with them. no real good choices here.. you have skip blobs on the glass on the highway, or you put the regular blades on and ice them up, and they don't clear, they smear.
  • heintz1heintz1 Posts: 52
    My Anco winter blades wipe very well even at high speeds, and I've not noticed any skipping so far.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    I run Ancos because they last, but their winter blades sure skip and leave funny patches on the highway in my 2000.
  • jposter, in your #824 post, you said:
    "Question, on 2 separate vehicles I drove I heard a sort of wistle noise that appeared to be coming from the passenger side? Is this common? Anyone else notice something like this. It seemed very faint and came and went depending upon the speed and direction of travel (maybe the wind direction too?) I'm thinking tire noise or something related to the mast antenna? Any comments welcome"
    I am wondering if you've figured it out or not. My 03 XLT has the same problem. I also guess it comes from the antenna, but really not sure. Thank you for any comment!
  • tonyd39tonyd39 Posts: 12
    I'm considering the immediate purchase of a new 2003 Explorer XLT, XLT Sport, or EB. The XLT comes with the 16" Michelin's. The XLT Sport and EB come with the 17" BFG's? Which tires and/or tire size is safer? I read a posting on here which states that the 17" tires/rims raise the center of gravity by approx 2" which may lead to increased rollovers. Is this a true statement? Are the 16" tires/rims "safer" on the 2003 Explorer then the 17" versions. Lastly ... does anyone know if the rollover side airbags are safe if young children are sitting in the second row seat? The children would either be in booster seats or not in any type of car seat. Thanks
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    both brands are Michelin units and have good reputations. there is something to the argument that the 17-inchers will increase instability at the limits of control, no formal testing availiable to the public on any of the variables. there is a government "rollover" rating that is a computed magic number, no driving tests at all are used in working it out.

    the air curtain airbags, if you've seen a set ever in discharged position at a car show or meet, are meant to keep from scrambling your brains inside your head banging on the roofline as the vehicle rolls over. they won't reach down to the level of anybody under junior high level... they're supposed to be, at least at Ford, a soft-deployment bag because you should have the half second to do that. so they shouldn't come into play with booster or child seats at all unless the seat is not fastened down, or breaks loose. and at that point, if the seat and the child is a loose missle, probably won't make a difference there, either.

    so there should be no major threat unless you drive a truck like it was a Miata, and you're playing fighter pilot. in that case, you're going roofing, not 4-wheeling, to use somebody else's wonderful phrase.

    I doubt anybody has any hard numbers of the "001% of all accidents involving children in car seats, rollovers, and goats...." type at all.
  • gregb5gregb5 Posts: 82
    The 16" is 29.1 inches in height. The 17" is 29.9 inches in height. That raises the center of gravity by .4 inches, which is minimal.

    I doubt there is any difference at all in the "safety" of the two tires. Pick the model you like best, and be content with the knowledge that the new body style is a lot better than previous versions in that respect.

    If it really concerns you, shop for a station wagon.
  • dcddcd Posts: 25
    Actually the 17" tires are 29.5" high and the 16" tires are 29.0" high, which would raise the center of gravity by a mere 0.25". The 17" tires have a shorter (lower profile) sidewall which would probably make it less likely to rollover, if anything.

    On a side note, a 2003 Explorer I test drove had faulty BFG 17" tires. The belts were showing! The BFG 17" tires on the 2003 EB I bought appear okay.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    somebody should have caught that. hope you got that car red-tagged until they replaced the erasers.
  • heintz1heintz1 Posts: 52
    I'm wondering about the accuracy of the claim of only a slight difference in vehicle height when running 16" wheel rims and 16" tires; vs. 17" wheel rims and 17" tires. In other words, does a 17" rim add an inch of height in itself, with yet another inch of height when 17" tires are then mounted on 17" wheel rims?
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    if the 17 inchers are a lower profile tire, they are less "thick" from the rim to the road, and you get some of it back.
  • I recall on the LS chat that an engineer from Lincoln stated that the 16" and 17" wheels plus their attached factory tires produced the exact same outer dimension. This, it was stated, was required to allow for the speedo and abs to function properly without reprogramming for a particular wheel option. I would think it would be the same for the trucks.
  • gregb5gregb5 Posts: 82
    Please excuse my earlier post. I was comparing the two different 16" sizes used, 235/70/16 and 245/70/16.
    I checked on The Tire Rack's site and compared the 235/70/16 to the 245/65/17 being used on NBX and Sport package XLTs. The 16" tire is 29.1 inches tall and the 17" (using Cross Terrain specs because I'm not sure what Ford uses) is 29.6 inches. That would make the difference in height .25 inch, since half of the difference is below the axle centerline. A small difference.

    As far as speedo gears go, they probably don't change them. The difference would be only 1.4%, which is within the error margin of most modern cars' speedos. They probably choose a gear that reads slightly high for one and slightly low for the other.

    As for ABS, I'm not an expert on it but I would think that as long as all 4 wheel/tires are the same height, it would not bother the sensors.
  • I have a 2002 Explorer that stalls when put in reverse. Anyone else notice this or have any idea what it could be?
  • joeadpjoeadp Posts: 68
    Could it be the computer or pc board.

    Just had mine replaced 2002 truck would not do anything. Seemed like a dead battery but lights and radio worked.

    Dealer quickly diagnosed and repaired truck.

    Truck is one year old first time I was back to the dealer.
  • Does anybody know if it is possible to upgrade the 2002 80 watt 4 speaker stereo with 6CD to the newer 2003 290 watt 7 speaker stereo system? Are the speaker cut-outs/vents (I am not sure of the exact terminology) in the 2002 or would holes have to be cut into the trim? Has anybody upgraded their stereo with some aftermarket speakers or amps?
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    this web site will let you know about darn near anything on the US market that will retrofit your machine, and they'll be pleased to sell you any fit kits your favorite almost-there speakers would need, as well as "revert to factory" harness adaptors. they even have disinstall/install instruction info online.

    a good place to start, even if you buy your geegaws locally.

    note: due to the initial issues with the 2002 lift glass in back and some hints on these forums that alignment of the parts remains critical, you probably don't want to put a 400-watt bass amp and a pair of 18-inch woofers in the back of an exploder. thump-thump-CRASH-tinkle! is very possible.
  • jcat707jcat707 Posts: 168
    I'm looking to buy a SUV and I would like to see what the monthly payments might look like. If any of you all could share your monthly payments, it would be greatly appreciated.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    I bet if you checked the web sites of the major makers and did a "build your car... build your financing" chase of button clicks, you would get real interesting answers. I did this with Ford, and I think at least GM also has these dalliances online to get you into the new-car spirit.

    addenda: for that matter, you should be able to do about the same thing for everything you're looking at here on Edmunds, as well as check the operating cost as well with the TMV feature.
  • For my 2002 EB 4WD with 3rd row seat, 6CD, Sunroof, and some other things I can't think of ;) it's $619 a month for 5 years. Nothing down, no trade in, 0% interest.
  • Is there a way to get rid of/silence the annoying seat belt alarm? This sucker is loud and obnoxious! Yes, I know if I wear the seatbelt it will not alarm..
  • jv312jv312 Posts: 32
    $465.24 on 2002 XLT V6. Financed 20k for 4 yrs @ 5.5 with my Credit Union.
  • Carefully follow the procedure in the owner's manual.
  • jv312jv312 Posts: 32
    manual...this is funny. The other day, I noticed the letters 'cal' near my compass. Figuring it probably stood for calibrate, I proceeded to the
  • jv312jv312 Posts: 32
    I hit enter by mistake.

    The other day, I noticed the letters 'cal' by my dash compass. Figuring it probably stood for calibrate, I proceeded to the owners manual to find the 'procedure'. Well, seeing how I don't have the info message center, I have to use this method that goes something like this...

    1. Find the compass control unit that's mounted behind your rearview mirror. (i.e small black box)
    2. Find recessed hole in unit. Place something in recessed hole and hold.
    3. Drive in small circles several times keeping pressure in the control unit's small hole until compass recalibrates.

    I have yet to do this, but as an engineer certainly found the process somewhat entertaining.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    lol, Jv312, do you also have to recite incantations while making those donuts in the parking lot?

    btw, you have 30 minutes to edit your message after posting - look for the Edit button by the title of your post.

    Steve, Host
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