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Ford Expedition Maintenance and Repair



  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    ....I first read your password nybanker, ha!...

    Do you think the "rattle" is worse for the FX4 models because of the open step bars versus the regular running boards? Hey, give me them old fashioned chrome bumpers and let Toyota keep all that awful cladding.

    I had been telling the dealer from the start that the noise seemed to be somewhat on the outside of the FX4 front doors.

    On another subject, I wish Ford had kept the FX4 nameplate for the 2004 Expedition instead of going to the puny NBX like the Explorer.

    Eastern Tennesse here surely is FX4 country. However,I've noticed that the dealers have lots of NBX Explorer inventory left, some 10-12 months old. We have been looking at NBX because many often come without the third row seat otion and many have the 4.6L V-8. But, wife doesn't like the very dark NBX interior and the feel of the NBX series cloth takes some getting used to. Slanted when folded third row seat is out. We have observed that the Explorer leather seats seem to be hard, at least when brand new. Anyone have any comments on the Explorer leather seats based on longer term??

    Also, does anyone have comments on the power (hp and torque) of the 4.6L vs. the trusty 4.0L in the Explorer? 3.55 and 3.73. The 4.6L seems to have a problem versus the improved performance of the 4.6L in say the 2wd 2003 Expedition. Tranny and torque converter the difference?

    Finally, my GMC guy kid brother has gone nuts over the torque of the 5.4L and the way cool power fold third seat. I told him GM will copy both soon and also maybe adopt the key pad for the driver's door. You don't have to have your cell phone in your pocket (that wont work out there anyway) to call Onstar ( that is if you have paid your $16.95/mo) Ha!
  • I bought my 03 eddie bauer expy in May, now have almost 5000 miles. The vehicle has not had a single problem except for the upper right windshield molding just needing a little more adhesive - a 10 minute job and they did not write it up. So far vehicle is quiet, powerful (but haven't towed yet), and comfortable. My only complaints are the break dust problem which I read the above info about $10.00 dust shields that I will try. I would like to see better mileage. Does anyone know if a "Tornado" (a round metal part placed in the air intake to create a vortex or air) found on a website with a similar name, costing roughly $75.00, will provide a 10-20% better gas mileage? If anyone has any success with that invention (or similar) please let this discussion know. One last note I found out when I traveled 500 miles on one hot afternoon. On a couple of occasions the air conditioning fan turned off for about 20 minutes twice on this 500 mile trip, but came back on. Now cold air was still lightly breezing thru the front vents, just not coming out forcefully, it still was annoying. I didn't sweat however, I just didn't expect this to happen even on a long trip. I called Ford in Detroit, they told me it is not unusual for this to occur. Like I said, it only happened twice on my 500 mile trip for about 20 minutes, and the same on the return trip in 90-100 degree weather. I was not too worried. Has anyone experienced this as well?
  • My 2003 Expy AC froze up on long trips. This sounds like the problem you have. When it does this turn off the AC, and leave it in the panel position. After a few minutes, the air will start coming out harder again after the condenser thaws out. They replaced the temperature sensor in the condenser and all is well now. The switch cycles the compressor on and off so the condenser doesn't freeze.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    There have been a number of discussions about the Tornado in the Town Hall all of which are now archived due inactivity. The consensus seems to be that they are not effective.

    You may want to browse through some of them:

    Anyone had any experience with "The Tornado"?

    The Tornado, Does it work for you?

    Tornado Fuel Saver...Hype?!?!?

    Tornadoair accessory??


    tidester, host
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I've been around, and dinking with cars a long time. None of these miracle devices for improved mileage and performance seem to work for me. The water injection system, the spark enhancer - all a waste of money. It's a big truck - it's going to take gas. And, the manufacturer, if they could boost mileage 10-20%, would do it because they would own the truck market, and get better CAFE fleet numbers too.
  • I see all of these post about the noise and vibration, but few solutions. I noticed my noise and slight vibration between 40 and 50 MPH. I bought the vehicle in May it has 6000 miles on it. I started noticing the noise at about 3000 miles. I have not taken it into FORD. I love this vehicle, but this is a real bummer. I am trying to gather as much info as I can as I have talked to FORD, but they seem to have not heard of the problem. I find that very hard to believe with all of these post and a lot of owners experiencing the same problems. I think they (FORD) are in some denial state. I did see someone replaced the rack and pinion steering. Any help regarding this problem would be appreciated.
  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    To summarize, my noises were as follows

    First the front diff was making a noise or had a vibration coasting or on level ground when in 2wd. I mentioned that my FX4 built 1-2-03 had this problem even though the government's NHTSA web site listed a TSB in July 2002 or earlier describing the problem. For some unknown reason the Ford dealer techs could not find any reference to the TSB number on the NHTSA. But, instead did the now well known "S" repair which immediately stopped the noise or roar above. Also, the repair eliminated the loud clunking noise when shifting from 2wd to a4wd or whatever the next setting over is called. Whether the repair will last the life of the vehicle is an open question, but of now is solves the problem.

    The other significant noise for the 2003 FX4 has been the noise in the doors. Based on my duct tape job where the bottom edges of the cladding was secured to the bottom edges of both front doors, the noise apparently has to do with the cladding rattling and/or air rushing through the holes where the cladding snaps on ( I assume there are holes in the sheet metal where the cladding is fastened? ) It seems more likely from just general examination that the cladding is flopping all around causing the noise.

    The catch is that I have not gotten a permanent fix under Ford warranty.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    The dealers secured my cladding with a two sided tape beneath the cladding. Problem solved. 8400 miles on the truck now. No noise.
  • What is the so called "S" fix. Can you be more specific. I really appreciate the help.
  • We have a 2003 EB Ford Expedition in which the brakes keep squeaking. We keep taking it to the Ford Dealer and they have not been able to fix it yet. Any suggestions on how to fix this?
  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    The Ford material handed me after the repair of my 2003 FX4 is Ford Article 03-6-4. It says it is to republish Article 02-25-7 to clarify specific tool usage. Apparently a specific brand or type of high quality snap-ring pliers are mandatory for the Ford techs to install the S-Spring properly into the front axle differential. There are instructions on using the proper silicone gasket sealant and other related matters to guide the Ford tech.

    The repair is for 2003 Expeditions and Navigators, 4wd, having a groan or hum and/or slight vibration at times in 2wd high. My FX4 was built 1-2-03, and had the problem from very early on. The S-Spring repair per Article 03-6-4 seems to have completely solved the problem--for now anyway. No leak.

    Besides stopping the rumble or roar while coasting at say 15-45 mph in 2wd high, the unit now shifts from 2wd into the next setting over (A something) without the awful chunk it had when new.

    Hope it lasts after warranty.

    Don't know the difference/relationship if any between a TSB and the above Article.?

    From my research of a number of web posts and the July 2002 NHTSA TSB data, I would conclude that the above is a widespread problem with at least A and B VIN production 4wd units.
  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    Hey nvbanker, you mean golf grip type? Ha! Carpet tape wouldn't be cool enough.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Not sure what they're using fx4, but it worked like a charm :)
  • I am looking to trade up to an older model(97 or 98) Expedition from my older Explorer. Any recomendations on what to avoid or tips on what to look for?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Yes. Make sure you get the 5.4L triton engine, the 4.6L is just too small for that truck IMO. The 99's held up exceptionally well.
  • Your attorney fees are only paid by the manufacturer if you win. The aspects of the repairs are also very important to your LL claim (cosmetic, nuisance, mechanical, safety, etc). The laws vary state by state, but there are specific conditions you need to meet.
    What revision '03 do you have - A,B, or C? (it is the the 6th or seventh digit from last in the VIN just before the sequential number
  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    Will second what nvbanker says in post 282.

    Also, note that the heavy duty 4R100 (order code 44E) transmission was standard with the 5.4L in Expedition for years 97-02. Some later 4wd models even have the seldom seen transmission drain plugs. The 4R100 is used with the 6.8 V-10 Triton and 5.4L in F-250, E-350 vans, etc. Point is the 4R100 combined with 5.4L in used Expeditions are good heavy duty values for towing up to 7,400 in 4wd and 8,300 or so in 3.73 ratio 2wd. A properly cared for used 5.4L unit should last for years of heavy use.

    As additional transmission information, the modern slightly lighter duty 4R70W (code 44U) is used in the 4.6L and 5.4L in 2003 Expedition. The 2003 Navigator with 5.4L 4v got the 4R100. The 4R70W was upgraded to handle the increased torque of the 5.4L 3v triton in 2004 F-150. Upgraded version already in production in 2004 Expedition in both 4.6L and 5.4L 2v Triton (tranny code 44W or something like that ?).

    ...just some bits of information from an old Ford man that someone might be able to use...
  • In NJ the mfg. pays all legal fees if you win. If you lose the atty. worked pro bono. The catch is they will only accept cases they think they can win. I spoke to an atty. that I got from an ISP, and he is familiar with this vehicle. Especially the A & B revisions.I have serious steering and drive problems not to mention auto mirrors and A/C problems.This vehicle has been back for svce 6x's in the 4 months since I purchased it.
  • Have an 03 expy. Had the door noise and the dealership found the handle rod hitting. they fixed that and tightened loose door trim that was rattling also.
    Got the car in May,03 and have had the rear differential completely replaced in July and then had noise again 6 weeks later. This time (September) they replaced only the clutch packs - 2nd time for the lemon law. Has Ford figured out this problem yet or will I be having a third strike?
    How does the lemon law work (PA)?
    Any insight helpful. Am very frustrated but love the car.
  • We had/have issues with our '03 Expy as well, but overall an excellent truck with definately some assembly problems.
      We had the vibration in the front end and heard an audible noise as well only in 2wd mode. If switched to 4wd high the noise wuold go away. Had to take it back two times for them to hear it then someone in the dept. heard my description and read back a Ford TSB that echoed my description to a tea. Turns out a redesiged S clip solved the problem.
      The other problem we had was that the drivers side window fell into the door while bringing down the window. They replaced the whole window and assy.
      Only outstanding problems are a missing plug that goes where the seatbelt goes into the middle seat rear compartment and while driving at speed, we are hearing "marbles rattling" coming from the drivers side door where near where the latch is. That noise is very annoying. So our 3 non maintenance appt. is happening next week. UGGGh. So close Ford........
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    OH, how I hate the first year introduction of a new model! I've not had that much trouble with my Navigator thankfully, but a few little things have persisted.

    Take heart though...if it helps, the BMW X-5 is on their 14th recall so far, and the first year Sequoia had miserable engine & A/C problems. The difference is, Toyota doesn't recall anything, they deal with it quietly if they have to, and secondly the media just assumes they never break, so you don't hear about it much if they do have repeat issues. And occasionally, they do.
  • zman3zman3 Posts: 857
    Please let me know if the next fix for your door works, and what it is. My dealership has a new latch on order in hopes of fixing the "creaking" I hear in my drivers door.
  • I bought a new 2003 Expedition XLT with the rear DVD entertainment system. The brochure said it came with wireless headphones. Mine did not and the dealership says the fine print in the brochure says that Ford can change specs. without telling people. This is hard on the 3 kids and us parents. The cords will not reach to the 3rd row. The dealership says it is Ford's problem and Ford say it's our problem. How can I get these headphones? Any ideas? Help!
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Guess you missed the recent Sienna gas tank recall, Nvbanker.

    JD Power reported a few months ago that first year models are now about as reliable as later year models. I hope they revisit their study soon because there's a lot of anecdotal evidence on the boards recently to the contrary.

    Steve, Host
  • They tried to do the same thing with me. I think that it is a scam that the dealers do. They started out telling me that it was an early model that only supported wired models. I pointed out the IR receivers near the player and then they said that Ford could change specs at any time. It's BS. I told them that I wanted a letter from them stating why they wouldn't give me the wireless models, and rather then do the letter they gave me the headphones.

  • I replaced my 2000 Expe with a new 2003 Expe.and just noticed a vibration problem. The vibration only occurs when a window in the back door is down when traveling at 35 mph and up and disappears when a front window is down. The vibration seems like a air pressure vibration in that it's not so much noise but vibrating air pressure that's painful on my ears much like an airplane in descent. I'm guessing it's an air pressure problem possibly because the back window is down causing a vacuum in the interior.
    Does anyone else have the problem, if not try driving with just a back window down and see if it happens.
  • ryokenryoken Posts: 291
    I've had that happen in a Grand Cherokee. Crack a front window, and it goes away.
  • I just bought my expedition about 3 months ago. I am on my 3rd 6 CD multiplayer. The second CD player took 5 cd's and they have told me they might not be retrievable. I am now getting alot of dash noises from them tearing it apart to change players

    Other then that my expedition rides well.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Yeah, no kidding, and yes, I did miss that recall. But safety recalls are hard, even for Mitsubishi to avoid....
  • recalls for the new Expedition or Navigator and they've been out since June 2002...Ford's getting better. Like nvbanker, I'd heard that BWM X5 statistic -- 14 recalls and counting.
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