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Ford Expedition Maintenance and Repair



  • tourguidetourguide Posts: 190
    I had EXACTLY this problem with the vibration in the steering wheel. I took mine back to the dealership and described the problem to them. They checked the balance on the tires because I thought I had actually lost a wheel weight, but that turned out to be OK.

    They DID lower the tire pressure to 37 PSI, as the factory sent the Contitracs to the dealership with 47 PSI. This over-pressure was apparently causing problems as I have not experienced this problem again. Most of the time the truck is smooth as silk on the highway.

    One thing I've noticed in the short time I've owned it (150 miles) is that the Expy has more "road feel" than other vehicles I've owned. Personally, I like this but I can see where some may not.

    Other than some minor niggling things, I really like my 2004 EB.

  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    The rack & pinion steering in these trucks gives you unsurpassed road feel. It takes some getting used to.
  • did you ever get any answers to this? I have an 01 expedition doing the same thing and the service engine soon light stays on constant. Have had it hooked to the computer and several things done to the transmission but they can't figure it out. Of course I'm 4,000 miles over warranty.
  • cplkevcplkev Posts: 3
    Thanks for the advice and info
  • misfiremisfire Posts: 1
    98 Ford Expedition 4.6 liter engine. Get intermittant misfire
    Some days it runs fine some days it does not and acts as if a spark plug wire has failed or fell off(I understand it does not have spark plug wires as such) I have cleaned the battery posts and cleaned the
    injection air box with a recommended cleaner. Some days it also would not Idle at initial startup. Are these problems inter related or isolated? Appreciate any ideas or suggestions
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Are you getting a Check Engine light?
  • bilsexbilsex Posts: 5
    I just spent the 9th day with my 04 Sequoia," Oh what a feeling!"
    It felt weird to not have the dealer replace 2 tires after the first week. Toyotas may cost more, but I'll make it up in the gas I save not driving to and from a Ford dealer.(Take your pick tried 3)Any way the best way to fix your 03 exp A series is to to buy a Sequoia. In my book, FORD QUALITY IS JOB NONE.
  • tourguidetourguide Posts: 190
    It sounds like you have a coil pack starting to go bad. They are occasionally like that when they're on the edge, sometimes they'll work and sometimes not. Having the engine codes checked should help determine which coil is going out. Then have it replaced and you should be good to go.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    You trying to make us feel badly, bilsex? We're happy for you. Enjoy your truck.
  • bilsexbilsex Posts: 5
    Not trying to make anyone feel bad,I really wanted my ex to be with me for 5 to 7 years. Imagine my disappointment when on the second day of ownership I'm taking my parents for a ride, they're diggin' the leather seats, then my dad sees the steering wheel vibrating in my hands. Any way, I forgot to mention the two taillights half full o water, the leaking rear strut,and the side curtains improperly installed(see also #482).Best wishes to all, oh yeah, my sister has an 03 ex eb A and her only problem is the brake dust. Go figure!
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Well, the folding rear seat is well worth the piddling problems you mentioned to me. Tires aren't the manufacturer's fault anyway. Your dealers may suck, but so do lots and lots of Toyota dealers. Their CSI is in the cellar by the way. Wait until you put some miles on that Sequoia, and the dealer tells you that you need the muffler bearings oiled, or your entire transmission could fall out! They do stuff like that all the time.

    Like I said, the Sequoia is a great truck, and if 0 defects is your goal, you have the right truck. For me, a truck with some engineering, features and great looks are my personal preference, but then, I have had none of the issues you had.
  • jeff88jeff88 Posts: 94
    Man, I agonized over the sequioa v expedition for the potential of poor build quality as you experienced. What made me choose the expy was the stellar experience with our '95 explorer -- over 8 years and 128k miles. no major problems.

    with the huge amount of money I saved over the sequioa and the much higher level of equipment, better ride, better handling, better safety equipment, seat air-conditioning for TX, better carrying capability and more practical storage conigurations, I beleive I made a wiser choice. The sequioa was nice, but not at all nicer over the road. If I still did a lot of off-roading as I did in my eplorer, then the toy might have been my chioce. It clearly wins on that side of the coin.

    The three toy dealers were also much less straightforward in what they were attempting to charge me than either of the two fords dealers I approached. that experience made me concerned that the relationship with the dealer post-sale would be much more tenuous. basically, they were far less trustworthy when they spoke of things I knew to be untrue.

    Having saved over 5 grand for a far better equipped ride, I am confident that re-investing in a far longer warranty package from ford over the standard term for either manufacturers will be wise. Will still be much further in the black and assured of maintenance and roadside coverage for my family. BTW, just completed a 3000 mile family trip and averaged 17.1 mpg in 80% highway, 20% city driving. it was 18 mpg on the highway en route to our destinations in our 4x4. (keep my tire pressure at the recommended 35 psi.)

    Hope you have a great experience with your new truck and wish all new vehicle buyers no stress over build quality issues.
  • wkohlerwkohler Posts: 74
    Expedition owner, I concur with bilsex. I agonized a great deal over whether to buy another suburban or try an expedition. I went with an early build expedition (July 02) and had many problems with it. Won't go into detail here, but sure you know what issues the early build expeditions had, and believe me, I had most every one of them. I had the chance to "unload" it and did. My intent was to go back to another suburban, but after a long discussion with the salesman (who was able to sell both ford and chevy products) and a long conversation with a "tech rep" who happened to be at the dealerhship that day, sprung for another expedition! I'm still not really sold on Ford, but I can honestly say that except for a faulty front passenger door switch that caused the "door ajar" light to stay on, this expedition has been trouble free and now has accumulated 38,000+ miles (and of course a tremendous amout of brake dust). By the way, the brake dust issue is dead with late model 04 and beyond expeditions. The ride and handling are superb (for an SUV). The advance-trac has worked flawlessly and most likely "saved the bacon" once or twice this past winter. I have learned not to rely on the "average fuel economy" display as I find it to be 1+ miles to the gallon on the high side. So I just simply subtract 1 mpg when using the display and find it to be fairly accurate. My mileage, using that method, is usually 16 mpg on the highway with speeds around 70 mph.
  • rockyjohnrockyjohn Posts: 7
    Does your vehicle have advance trac? Ford bought back my 4 month old 2004 EB because of rear end problems. They did this without a fight. Ford knows they have a problem. Good luck.
  • tourguidetourguide Posts: 190
    I have one of the last build 04s sitting in my garage. The research saga with this purchase started over a year ago and nearly drove my wife batty. I too grappled with Sequoia, or Expedition and in the end opted for the Expy. In the final analysis I think I got a much better equipped vehicle at the price point I bought at. I love the handling, safety features, and most everything about the vehicle. As others have noted the brake dust issue is a thing of the past for these newer vehicles. I have 200 miles on mine and there isn't eve a hint of dusting. When these pads finally go, I'll be going over to and picking up a set of Kevlar pads. The dusting (as I've found out) comes from the pad material carbonizing at high temperatures. Pads made of Kevlar are highly heat resistant and therefore have little or no dusting. The new ceramics that Ford went to will dust, but the dust they throw off is grey. The old pads Ford used were less heat resistant and thus dusted a lot more.

    Although price was the final swing for us, the straw that pushed the decision to Ford was the stories our neighbors told about Toyota's "customer service" and the problems they were having with a new mini-van order. These folks ordered a new van to be built so that the new van would arrive at about the same time the lease was up on their Volvo station wagon. The new car build was weeks and weeks overdue - Toyota's fault not the dealership. These folks naturally called Toyota because now they had a problem, and the reps they talked to on the phone were actually rude to them about it. It seems to be some butt kissing is in order when a person is spending north of 45K on a new vehicle, but Toyota didn't see it that way. I wonder how they'll get treated if there are problems down the road.
  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    2003 Ford Expedition with 35,000+ miles. Old rear end whinning away. Dealer's tech took a ride with me and climbed underneath and said
    rear end would be replaced under warranty becasue of the obvious noise and the fact the rear end was in the serial number range giving trouble. Even small dealership had done several already.

    Post 686 (if I copied down the correct number), don't worry too much about the shaking. First, the new Exoedition's R&P steering is simply doing its job. Second run the heck out of the Contitrac TR OEMs and believe it or not the steering wheel shake will be gone. My 2003 had been parked in a field or non paved area for several months before delviery---the steering wheel shook like crazy for the first few miles. Now same old tires do not shake at all. Upgrade to another brand or go for some sort of tire warranty on the OEM TRs. Pretty terrible OEM tires. guy claims new Firestone Destination is very smooth on the 2003-04 Expeditions, good buy, and you get most of the new Bridgestone tire technology. Anyone tried the Destination tire on Expedition?

    NVBanker hangin' in there?
  • yodeyyodey Posts: 3
    15,000 miles and 3 rear ends. I guess it comes free with every oil change now. I have had 2 replace one at 1500 miles and one at 14,000 now with just over 15,000 miles I have the same problems with the vibration when turning and now a smell of propane gas while driving. This happened in the past on my Chrysler truck and they said right away that the smell only comes from a reat axle buring up. Ford dealership said they never heard of the this before. It happens more on long drives then short drives so when I took to the dealer they did not smell it of course. I think it is now time to file for lemon law. I am tired of taking in for replacements the only good thing is the dealership has been co operative in repairs so far but not what I expect out of $40K vehicle.
  • yodeyyodey Posts: 3
    What is the secret ? as you can see by my last post 704. I am to the point of returning it for lemon.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Of course, fx4! BUT, I won't ever buy a Firestone tire again, I don't care what it's on. IMO, their treatment of the Firestone/Explorer mess was unconscionable, and fairly typical of Japanese companies, who deny and stonewall even better than American companies do. Add to that the fact that most of the Firestone Steeltex tires have been coming apart, damaging the trucks they are mounted on, and have finally been recalled. I have -0- confidence in Firestone/Bridgestone and won't roll them for anyone. Destination? How about hell!
  • jeff88jeff88 Posts: 94
    with the assessment of firestone tires. Would never consider a bridgestone./firestone again. My experience with dunlop tires over the past 5-6 years has been really good from a price/performance ratio. when the contis on our expy go, am going to check dunlops 1st. our '95 explorer had firestones to 40k, michelin ltx to 80k then dunlops to 128k with a ton of tread left. they ran quieter, road better, handled equally and lasted longer than the michelins, which were much better than the 'stones.

    to me, tire maintenance is the key to both long life & safety. I keep mine at 1 lb over recommended psi and check every 2 weeks. tires are rotated every 5000 miles and aligned if needed.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Unfortunately for Firestone, I was around to remember the 70's, when Firestone put out their now famous "500" tire, that had a tread separation, one tire at a time every year or so, and although Firestone would replacement them (pro-rata) with an equally poor tire each time they failed, the reputation was just reinforced over this Wilderness thing. They just don't care.
  • mwiklemwikle Western New York StatePosts: 62
    Keep in mind that "Firestone" is GONE it is just a brand ... nothing else. They are all Bridgestone (japanese owned) tires now ... albeit made is USA often. No way they have separate R&D in that corporation ... would cost wayyy too much and no consumer-facing reason to do so.

    That said; we had 500's' on a marshmellow-sprung mid 70's Mercury Montego (ugh!). I would not brand-preferentially buy a Firestone brand tire (like, say, a michelin)...there would have to be a reason other than price alone (usually there are lots of similar priced choices for a vehicle anyway)
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I can't see where Bridgestone has changed a thing over at Firestone from my experience.
  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    Sorry to bring up Firestone. Ha!

    We had an early in the year 77 T/B during fall of 76 strike. It had the Firestone 500 tires and silver paint and a bad transmission. Take your pick as to which was the worst. However overall the 77 T/B gave us good value and very high miles at time kids were young, money tight. Vehicle looked great after old Torino Elite, etc. of that era. Dealers and others offered to buy 77 T/B at full sticker price just to have one during the strike.

    Looking at new 2004 Expedition NBX due to deals on interest rate, rebates. Looking at NBX with 2nd center seat deleted (2nd row Captain Chairs something) at a lovely MSRP price of $530. Two tacky armrests added for the $530. No credit for 2nd row center seat delete part. Outside 2nd row seats same. Anyway the NBX model feels "lighter" , less load
    on steering wheel than 2003 FX4. Better, less huge truck feel in 2004 NBX. Any insights as to why? New 4R75W with larger torque converter. Wondering about basic spring rate change from 2003 FX4 to 2004 NBX, possible power steering change for 2004? Tires same Conti TR. Feel when driving is different and does not seem to be accounted for by center seat (20% part) delete in the 2004 NBX.
  • tourguidetourguide Posts: 190
    I can't comment on the seating changes for the 03-04 NBX, but I can tell you that the steering ratio changed from the 03 to 04. The 03s had (if I am remembing this right) something like a 17:1 steering ratio which is a bit unforgiving and somewhat unnerving at highway speeds. The 04s went to a 20:1 ratio which means you have to crank the wheel a bit more in around town driving, but highway speeds feel much more comfortable.

    I am not very pleased with the Conti-tracks myself. On a 40K+ vehicle I would have thought a little higher quality was in order. This fall I'm going to replace these things with Nokian Vatiivas. Then life will be good in the Expy.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    the Continentals are a low mileage tire. They deteriorate quickly - long before the tread is gone.
  • fx4fx4 Posts: 72
    Thanks tourguide and nvbanker.

    One of my Cont. TRs seems to have developed a fairly severe "radial pull" around 30.000 that I know was not in it earlier. Alignment checks have revealed nothing at all after an early very minor toe-in correction. The tire is on the rear and really should be in the scrap heap. I noticed my spare is the Cont SUV instead of the
    slightly different Cont TR OEM on the ground. I thought mine might be from something the dealers guys might have done until saw that some new 2004 4wd Expedition inventory had same TRs on ground and the Cont SUV model as the spare. ???

    It is hard for me to say that Cont TR is a low mileage tire. Mine are at 37,500 plus and just yesterday a manager at a large Ford dealership said they did not need to be replaced for him to sell my unit on his front row retail. Lots of tread left at least assuming the carcass holds up. Similarly, last week I saw a set of Cont. SUV on 2003 2wd Expedition that had some usable tread left after 54,000 miles.

    Love to find some Ford website for specs on steering ratio for 2003 Expedition versus 2004 Expedition per post 712 above. My 2003 FX4 is just plain hard, annoying to steer, especially after some time behind the wheel.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    The reason I formed that opinion was due to my experience with my Continental tires on my first Navigator. They made it to about 30,000 miles - tread looked like new, but two of them had the same problem you have, fx4, the radial pull. I put the first one under the truck and put the spare down. Then the second one started to do it, and before I could deal with it, another one just started leaking through the sidewall, no puncture - just a perforation through the wall. I got the message, and replaced them all. But not with Contis.
  • tourguidetourguide Posts: 190
    For what it's worth - I read that somewhere on the Internet in a professional review. I wish for the life of my I could remember where, but I just cannot. I did try some searching to see if I could turn it up, but it escapes me. I read so much in the year I spent researching before this purchase it all started to blend together. I do remember specifically reading it somewhere and it stuck with me about the ratios because I was running into lots of rehashed 03 reviews as the two model years are so similar and I was looking for differences. Sorry I can't remember better where it came from. Maybe your local dealer service department could help (if they're sharp)?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Personally, I like the way the 03 steers just fine.
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