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Lincoln Navigator Maintenance and Repair

Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,092
Problems with your Navigator? Post them here and share any solutions with other TH members.


  • I have a '00 Lincoln Navigator. Apart from the Air Suspension failing a couple of times, I have not entirely been unhappy with my decision to purchase this car. However, after taking my car to the dealer recently to have the Air Suspension looked at again, that may have all completely changed and I am hoping to get some guidance from someone on this board.
    2 days ago, I brought the car in to have the suspension looked at as the CK SUSP light came on and the compressor stopped running. The service manager had looked at it about a week earlier and said that the previous failure was due to a bad relay and replaced. While there, I asked that the technicians take a look at the Service Engine Soon light which came on recently as well.

    When I picked the car up, the service manager advised that the susp failure was due to a loose ground in the car. This was located and fixed and not only is the susp working again but also the auto door locks and MPG indicator (YAY!!).

    BUT, and this is a very big BUT, the service manager said they also took a look at what was causing the Service Engine Soon light to come on. When they pulled the "codes" from the car, they found that that the "left bank" was running lean. Additionally, a hose in the engine compartment was also leaking air and could be heard outside the car. They found that they car was approximately 3 quarts low on oil and compression in the #6 cylinder was low. Needless to say, they repaired the hose, filled 'er up with oil, and checked the "left bank" and the engine service light was reset. In the process, they detected a faint noise coming from the motor (bear in mind that I am not sure in what order these problems were detected). They took a closer look and concluded that the problem is "deep within the engine" and cannot be easily repaired. IT will likely require a new engine.

    At the risk of sounding defensive, the car was serviced by the dealer 2 months ago and, at that time, the oil/oil filter, air filter, coolant, and transmission fluid was changed. The car does not leak or burn oil and assuming that they added the correct amount of oil 2 months ago, how could 3 quarts just disappear? Additionally, if the car was low on oil, would I not be able to tell from looking at the dashboard indicator? OR, would there be a noticeable loss in performance or excessive engine noise or something??

    Let's say that my only option is to replace the motor, would the car not have to be there more than 2 days for them to determine that? AND, would they not charge me for the time they spent to investigate the problem? They also did not charge me for repairing the loose ground which resulted in my suspension failure.

    As if this was not confusing enough, the service manager recommended that I trade the car in. NOT for a new Navigator but for another car and preferably not associated with their dealership.

    My next step is to bring the car in to another dealership to get a second opinion. If someone out there is/has experienced this same problem, please advise. If not, I would equally be interested in hearing your thoughts on this situation and any advise you may have for me.

    Thanks in advance.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    You may have already done something, so ignore me if I'm way too late.

    I have found that a lot of service techs don't know that your Navigator takes more than the customary 5 quarts of oil, and so they don't fill it up when they service it, and you start out 2 quarts low when you leave. That may explain why it needed 3 quarts.

    Why they didn't charge you could be alterior, but also they just could be sympathetic.

    I'm wondering how long you have had the car. Did you by new? If not, now long ago?

    Very odd they suggested you trade the truck in "elsewhere". That I totally don't get. But I agree, a second opinion is warranted. If indeed, something is detected that is serious, I also would trade it off unless it is still under warranty, which I'm doubting it is.

    I had a 99 Navigator that gave me -0- trouble for 4.5 years. I have an 03 that I'm now equally happy with. I have never heard of anybody else with this bizarre story. Wishing you the best.
  • vast8fmvast8fm Posts: 1
    I just bought a used 01 Navigator and do not have the door lock code. According to the owner's manual the code is on the computer module but I can't seem to locate it under the hood. If anyone knows where it is I would greatly appreciate the help.
  • What type of engine coolant/antifreeze is recomended for my lincoln navigator?
  • shdshd Posts: 4
    2004 Navigator... when applying brakes at any speed steering wheel vibrates. dealer says it is characteristic of vehicle.. I say NOT, I have had two Navigators before and never had this problem.. The servicing dealer has already worked on the rotors twice.. It this is character of the vehicle why work on it? I need support info from any owners..
  • rideneasyrideneasy Posts: 1
    where are the plugs and how do I change them
    98 lincoln navigator
  • shdshd Posts: 4
    I don't know where the computer module is, but you can set your own unlock code numbers. There is a section in the owners manual telling you how.
  • I also want to know where the spark plugs are located 00 Navigator?
  • This morning my 99' Navigator 4 wheel drive had a problem with the air suspension. The back of the truck looked like a low rider truck and it had a very bumpy ride. By ging on the internet I figured out it was the air suspension. I could her the compressor working but the back would not inflate. I checked under the hood noticed there was a loose black hose(I don't know what it's called) with some kind of metal valve, it is next to the fuse box. Found out where it should go and conected it, but it was still leaking air. I decided to hold it while turning on the ignition and the back started to go up, so I guess that's the problem?right?Where can I get this hose/air line and what is the correct part name?Is it expensive? Should I still have someone check it out? Also do you know where I can get a diagram of all the engine parts (big ad small) so I can have for the future?
  • sugaraysugaray Posts: 1
    The spark plugs on the 98 navigator are located under the fuel injector rail. The coil wire has a bolt that has to be unscrewed. The front 4 plugs are a little difficult to remove and the rear 4 plugs and coils are much more difficult, I was lucky to know a mechanic who works for a lincoln dealership and he talked me out of trying this difficult task. The reason is that the frame is from a van!!!!!
  • rangaranga Posts: 2
    I just bought a 2004 navigator with nav radio with Sirius and rear dvd system. After spending $5000 dollars for this system, I discovered a huge design flaw. You can't listen to sat radio while the kids in the back are watching a dvd with headphones. There is only one aux input on this radio which is shared by the two systems. "Dual play" is not feasible. Utter stupidity on the part of ford and Visteon engineers. My dealer claims ignorance and ford has no solutions and was quite apathetic. This is not a problem with the GM equivalent products.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    And, if you don't have the owner's manual, the door default code, should be on a white sticker, under the dash somewhere, driver's side. If you can't see it by lying on your back and looking up with a small light, your dealer can give it to you from the VIN number. Then, I'd suggest you use that default code to change it to another code. That way, if someone discovers your code, you can change it again. If they discover your default code, you're screwed, as it can't be changed. Good luck.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Is almost always the result of a bad tire on these new Navigators. I have it too, but if I put the front tires on the back of the truck, it goes away. So, your dealer isn't shining you on, it is a common complaint, as the rack & pinion steering transmits road feedback very effectively to the steering wheel - but also any little defect in a tire or brake will also be felt. Try rotating your tires front to back.
  • My navigator was 3 weeks past the 4 yr warr, but had only 26,000 miles . Both dealer and Lincoln said 'sorry'. The cost to me was $491 plus $54 towing. I thought that some compensation should have been offered beside 'sorry'. Ken Leander
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Sure would have been nice if they had. But rarely do any manufacturers extend coverage on a discretionary basis.
  • I purchased my aviator in April of 2003. I have had recurring intermittent slipping/engagement problems with it since September of 2003. After being in for service 6 times with the same problem I am going to the dispute settlement board on Thursday.
    I have been without my Aviator for a total of 59 days for the specific problem listed. 33 total days of service since I first purchased the vehicle in April of 2003 to April of 2004.
    The listed problem is intermittent when the trans gets hot. Primarily in stop and go traffic conditions. It will engage in drive and then begin to slip until it just jumps into gear. This continues at every stop unless I stop the vehicle and put it into drive. It will still continue even afterwards on occasion.
    The problem has been addressed during the service visits with parts including the solenoid body, pump bolts, pan gasket, stand pipe and o-rings. Still a recurring problem.

    Has anyone had a similar experience with their Aviator and/or attended the Dispute Settlement Board trying to find resolution to their problem and what was the outcome.
  • wrswrs Posts: 1

    Transmission problems with New 2004 Navigator with 1000 miles on it (3rd week), similar slipping, complete disengagement problems, just happened and in the shop now. I am very interested in the problems they tried to ID. I told them to come pick up THEIR car, I am trying to exchange now because I am afraid of your very situation, ongoing unidentified problems. I will pass along their diagnoses.

    Does anyone else have this problem??
  • i own 2004 navigator with 1250miles on it vibration from day one,dealer replace intermediate column, still vibrat, rebalnced the wheels,still vibrat at around 50mph this second time at the dealer. dealer say it is normal,they give me a loaner car merc sable $25000 car rides beter the $63000 navigator no vibration at all i just dont understand is it the amrican way building cars or we don't pay enough lol for this vihacle?
  • i purchased 2004 navigator 6 weeks ago there is vibration in the steering from day 1.
    at the 1st time kept the truck for 3 days & replaced the intermediate column on the steering,nothing change,
    the dealer rotate the wheels,1st time kept the truck for a another day, nothing change
    they rebalnced the wheels 2nd time nothing change
    they kept the truck a another day.
    now the truck is at the dealer for four consecutive days, no result found yet,
    please advise me what is my legal rights & who can help me with this situation.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    This is the most common complaint on the Navigator and Expeditions since the 03 version came out with the very sensitive Rack & Pinion steering box came out. It's the tires. ANY imperfection in the tires, be it out of roundness or imbalance is transmitted up to the driver as well as any road imperfection as well. There is a special balancer that some dealers have, some don't, (It's a Hunter, something or other, check back in this site, and the other Navigator site and Expedition Problems board, and you'll see this problem more than anything else and find it) that is most effective at resolving it if it's balancing. If you have an out of round tire, switching the tires from front to back will tell you that. Then you can demand a new set of tires. That's what I had. And they were Michelins, which are the best, and one of them wasn't round. New tires fixed it.
  • nav59nav59 Posts: 1
    It is located on the anti-theft computer inside the vehicle.It is under the dash on the firewall beside the top of the brake pedal.It is 5"x4"x1-1/2" thick and white in color.There should be a 5 digit number on the label.
  • this vehicle is at the dealer already 2nd week in a row.
    they re balanced & rotate the tiers,they checked the rotors,they checked the driveshaft,they took the rear end axle down,in other words they took apart the truck & they can not figure what cause the vibration,they run the truck on the lift they dont get any vibration, ones they drive on the road the vibration is there,they took a set of tiers from a stock vehicle balance them & test drive they still have vibration,
    i have a heart condition I'm on medication daily, i dont get anywhere with this dealer or ford lincoln co.
    please help before i get my heart attack.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Sounds like the dealer is doing everything possible to help you - what else can they do? What else could Ford do besides buy back the truck? Be patient and nice, and they just may do that for you.
  • erik_herik_h Posts: 77
    Has anyone tried getting the tires balanced using one of the Hunter 9700 machines like mentioned in msg#4331 on the tires, tires, tires message board. I had a similar issue with my Lexus and it was resolved by one of these machines at the dealer. The tire retailer used an older type of balance machine but the dealer had better equipment.
  • Have new 2004 Navigator purchased 9/13/04 with 1500 miles. Experienced two random occasions where car would not start after turning ignition key. Car spontaneously started after 5 and 10 minutes respectively. Took car in to the dealer and explained the problem. After they did the cursor diagnosis I was told that they did not know what the problem was and would have to go through the entire vehicle systems like "looking for a needle in a hay stack and could take some time to do". Has anyone had a similar problem and if so what was the problem?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Oh man....that's the hardest problem of all to find, since you can't find it unless you catch it in the act. So here's what I recommend;

    1) Ask your dealer to swap out the battery with a new one. Sometimes, those batterys can go up and down like that, unless the problem isn't that it won't crank. It was hard to tell from your description.

    2) If the car did crank, forget #1. If you did #1, and it does it again anyway, then for #2, give the car to the service manager, get a loaner from him, and tell him to use your car as his own until it does it to him, and then find it, and fix it, no matter how long it takes. It's a pain in the [non-permissible content removed], but it's you're only chance to find it. Otherwise, you never know when it's going to let you down, and unless Jesus works at your dealership, it's their only chance to find it too.
    Good luck.
  • jag4jag4 Posts: 1
    Engine light is on, I hook it up on a code reader and it comes up with lean left bank and lean right bank, I replaced the air filter, spark plugs check the PCV valves and all visible vacuum hoses, did not find any leak, turn engine light off, take it back on the road, when accelerating at speed between 30-50 it seems to buck or no power, engine light was flashing, then after it drive with rpm at 3000, engine light go steady on and it start to work normal,, what else can cause this---help
  • Your dealer SHOULD claim ignorance, because this is common sense, THINK....the solution to your problem is not that hard to figure out...go to Radioshack.
  • This is not a characteristic of this vehicle. You are absolutely right, and you should try taking your Navigator to another dealer. No 50-60k luxury vehicle should have steering wheel vibration, let alone a Hyundai, lol. However 9.5 out of 10 times on this vehicle, there is nothing wrong with the vehicle, it is the tires. Have them checked by a dealer that has a clue.

  • Just picked up the 04 ultimate navigator and have no problems with the brakes. Traded the 2002 and had no problems with it also. Test drive another one and see if others vibrate as your does.
  • heyjewelheyjewel Posts: 1,046
    Bad Gas?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    With lean codes on both right and left banks, I was thinking more of a bad mass air flow sensor myself........although that's more of a GM failure issue than a Ford issue.....
  • Yes. I have a 2004 Navigator. I bought it brand new. After about 2 months (2700 miles only), today the transmission began slipping and jerking. It won't engage into Reverse from park. We've only made 2 payments on this car. I am so disappointed I could cry. My 13 year old daughter and I were stranded about 70 miles from home and we had to get a tow truck to bring us home and only 35 miles of the towing were covered we paid about $250 of it. Tomorrow I am contacting the dealership and I wish I had bought a Toyota instead!
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Did you call the Lincoln Commitment toll free number for help - and they won't cover the tow?
  • I have had this problem over and over again. First they changed the oxygen sensors. This worked until I was climbing a hill at 70mph with my kids in the car and hard thumping, check engine light flashing, reduced speed to 30mph, check engine light went off and everything fine. Until I got back up to 50 mph then a loud pop and sputtering. Spark plug had popped out of cylinder, guess this rig has chronic problems with one spark plug coil. It had been previously fixed per NHTSA service bulletin, however, since the original fix, they found it didn't work and have a second fix. Too late for me, I got the second fix, had to replace cylinder head. Now it bucks at 1500 rpm especially when climbing. Doesn't do it with hard acceleration, just from dropping down in rpm and having to accelerate again, like when car slows down in front of me and I have to slow down then speed up again. Not sure what to do now.

    I'd have them check your coils, maybe the 2nd NHTSA bulletin will help you prevent what happened to mine.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    How many miles on this beast..........
  • I own a 1999 Lincoln Navigator, when I get in or out of my vehicle, randomly the "Door Ajar" will stay lit even though all the doors and lift gate are closed, and because of this my interior lights remain on as well as my running board lights. They will go off eventually after the vehicle is started sometimes they don't. It's getting frustrating I pulled the fuse on the running board lights to keep from draining my battery. The interior lights go off automatically, sometimes. Anyone have this same problem and was able to fix it, or if anyone has any suggestions I would greatly appreciate them.
  • mongo1mongo1 Posts: 49
    Greetings jalmanza, may this find you well. I would suspect a defective switch in one of the doors. If dirt or contamination (such as road salt, ect.) gets into these switches, they can corrode and create the illusion that the doors are not closed properly. Removal and cleaning of the contacts with a solvent specifically made for cleaning electrical contacts, (Such as Lectra-motive electrical parts cleaner by CRC for example) may solve your problem. At least it would be a cheap and easy first step to try and isolate the problem. I have a more unusual problem in my Aviator where even after the puddle lights on the outboard mirrors go off, a dim light can still be seen through the turn signal louvers. Anybody out there experience this? Dealer says this is normal, which of course is just so much "Bovine Scatorial" as eventually it will run the battery down as well. Anyway, the switches are where I would start. Proceeding from there to a qualified automotive electrician if that doesn't fix the problem, since it would probably involve an open (short) circuit in the harness. Hope this helps.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    My brakes started grinding on my Navigator at 24,000 miles, which was a shock to me, since my 99 Nav went 65,000 miles on the original brakes linings. So, took it in, and to my amazement, the linings were gone, and so were the rotors! Since these were wear items, I expected to have to pay for the job, but was a little peeved at having to do so at this point, yet I know of a lot of cars that this is considered "normal". Not Lincolns, but some cars it is. When I picked up the car, Ford stepped up and covered it 100%, no questions asked. Now, that's commitment, and that's what I'm used to, and that's what has kept me driving Lincolns for the past 15 years. FWIW. Way to go Lincoln. YMMV, I understand. But I'm very satisfied, still. I just hope THIS set of linings doesn't blacken the wheels so badly, and lasts longer.
  • I hope you haven't paid any money to get this fixed. All you need is some wd-40. Spry it into the door jams/latches and wha-la! Problem solved.
  • I have XM radio and it works fine when the dvd is on. Sorry to hear that this is a problem if you have Sirius.
  • treetree Posts: 2
    I have an air suspension problem on 2000 Navigator 2wd. Under the hood next to the fuse box is an air line union (?) that has failed allowing two sections of air hose to come apart. The "Union" looks like a short black plastic tube which joins two hoses. Can this be fixed by simply replacing the Union? Are any special tools required?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Just another reason why I don't subscribe to Consumer Reports. I have owned 2 of them. I had 1 minor A/C problem with the 99 in 5 years, I have had a few more minor problems with the 03, but no major ones. The worst car on the planet? Not by a long shot, C/R.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Upon further reading, I note that is a "Projected" reliability rating by Consumer Report. So it's a guess. Since I drive an 03 Navigator, which is the worst model they made, being the new model year out, and it's the worst car on the market, you may all rest assured that there are no cars to be afraid of on the market and you may buy all cars with confidence. The worst is non too bad at all, so all others would be quite perfect indeed. Consumer Reports is no longer necessary, and may close up shop - and the sooner, the better.
  • heyjewelheyjewel Posts: 1,046
    Forbes article about the worst cars ... (*(&&$)***


    I have an '04 Navigator ... worst reliability.


    and an '01 V6 LS .... worst resale value.




    OTOH, my Nav trouble free so far and it's still A#1 ride.


    my LS still worth appx 50% of my new price at age 4 years.


    Still ...
  • treetree Posts: 2
    Problem: I have an air suspension problem on 2000 Navigator 2wd. Under the hood next to the fuse box is an air line union (?) that has failed allowing two sections of air hose to come apart. The "Union" looks like a short black plastic tube which joins two hoses. Can this be fixed by simply replacing the Union? Are any special tools required?


    The Fix: The part number I was looking for is 5B322 (2L1Z*5B322*AA) and lists for 23.50. It contains just the quick connect union. Replacement was easy. Removing the old union required removing the end caps (which allows the inner collet to be pushed inward), and while keeping the inner collet push in, pulling the hose out. Installing the new union couldn't be simpler. Just push the hose into the end.
  • We purchased our '04 Ultimate Navi brand new and since that time it's been an ULTIMATE pain! From delivery, it's been one problem after another. When we took delivery, the HID headlights didn't work, but the dealer wanted us to drive it off the lot and come back the next morning to fix it. It took three different visits and a call to Lincoln to get that problem solved. Then the steering and front drive system developed a grinding noise then wouldn't steer smoothly. It took 2 weeks to replace ALL of the front system and steering to the column. Then the dealership didn't put on one of the wheel covers and that fell off on the way home. I won't go into that story cause I could write a book on that! Passenger side exterior panel came off. Took three trips and a week to get resolved. Now the transmission has developed a problem. Wrote Lincoln about lack of any REAL customer service and the amount of time to get this DUD in for repairs. Not much help there either, just a friendly voice telling me their position. Oh, by the way this was my second Navigator. The first was a '00 which was perfect and I have special ordered. That one never gave us any problems in the 3 years that we had it. As Ford's "Red Carpet" client's you'd think that lincoln would try harder to please us. They've failed. We're working to have Ford/Lincoln buy this lemon back from us, and it's tough. We won't be buying any more Ford/Mercury/Lincoln products anymore. Seems that all of their products finish last in comps with everthing else in the same class, and I now can attest to that.
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