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Ford Explorer Maintenance and Repair



  • lmc5lmc5 Posts: 16
    Well I took my Explorer in on Monday the 15th and told the service department that my brakes were still making a woofing sound and I would like it to be fixed because I am tired of bringing it in for the same problem. The Technician rode with me and he heard the noise. When we get back to the service department the service rep. that I have been dealing with asked me who details my car and I asked why. He said that the tire dressing that they put on the tires may be causing the noise. This is a crock of you know what. I told him the car has not been washed since they supposedly fixed it a few weeks ago. They kept the car overnight and called me yesterday and said it was definitely the armor all that they put on my tires when I get it washed. He said they are spraying it into the tire and it is getting on the rotors. I hung up the phone and immediately drove to the dealership and asked to speak to the service manager. I told him what his service rep told me and he just shook his head in disbelief. I told him if this was causing the noise wouldn't every dealership in the USA be backed up with people having brake problems and why is it making the noise on the left side only, I get all four tires cleaned at the same time. I also told him that they spray the dressing on a rag and wipe it on the tire. Then I said to myself, why am I explaining this to him because it has nothing to do with the problem. The manager assured me the car would be fixed and he would address this "tire dressing" issue with his rep. I have had nothing but problems with this vehicle and three Ford service departments but this takes the cake. I know whoever reads this will get a kick out of it.
    Has anyone else been told this? I am wondering if it is standard practice for Ford to treat their customers like idiots.
  • sanandtonsanandton Posts: 342
    Does anyone know how warranty repairs are paid for at a ford dealership? Are they paid on a case by case basis (ie: do the work, submit the bill, get paid for what you do) or are they paid an allocation for all repairs in a lump sum. They would then have incentive to keep feeding us the BS we always get in order to avoid warranty repair and avoid dipping into the service proffit. It seems they would be eager to fix things or at least make an attempt to do so if it was not a "HMO" for autos set up.
  • kc_flynnkc_flynn Posts: 45
    Friend of mine had a '96 Explorer. Needed whole new engine at 65,000 miles. He traded it in for a new Honda Accord LX. It's painful to think people spend $30K on a vehicle that gives them nothing but trouble for 65,000 measly miles. He says never again will he buy a Ford.

    The vast majority of Ford products are garbage.
  • tomsrtomsr Posts: 325
    My 98 Sport has 24k miles and a seam in the leather drivers seat cushion is pulling apart.Does anybody else have this problem? Am I asking to much to get quality for the $24000 I spent? I thought leather is suppose to be more
    durable than cloth. I hope nothing serious goes
    wrong before next year.
  • skiest1skiest1 Posts: 1
    I own a 1999 ford explorer limited.
    I have had similar problems.
    The latest problem was.
    Went over some railroad tracks on a main road
    and then it stalled, tried to start it right back
    but it wouldn't start, so I waited a couple of minutes then. it was ok after that.. Is this something that gets worse with age. I have 25,000
    miles on it..
  • sanandtonsanandton Posts: 342
  • Ok, heres the scoop on everyone with a vibration on left turns ONLY. Ford is aware of this problem and they have a fix. Why these 'mechanics' are saying Armor All on the rotors blah blah blah are full of le crepola. The left side power steering hose must be replaced under warranty, the exhaust system gets a vibration dampening bracket and the PCM gets reprogrammed to change shift points slightly. AND IT WORKS, had it done after starting through the service managers BS, 'all cars have inherent vibrations due to the harmonics of blah blah blah' God its like the guy watched one too many Steven Hawking specials on Discovery channel or something. I am pleased to say the vibration is gone, and although its not perfect, I am satisfied to date with the explorer. Another thing to watch out for is those cam chain adjusters, have heard those are problem areas too and can cause that knocking noise some may here at startup. Could also be piston slap from too loose of piston to wall clearance but you would have to find out for yourself.
    Get your explorer in and get it fixed...
  • Heard that replacement of MAF unit fixes this as well. Warranty? Do not know, but I do notice you can blip the throttle and get it to hang up before the revs pickup-sometimes. Anoying and dangerous for someone not expecting their motor to hesitate under a critical time. I am going to buy a set of matched fuel injectors, machined MAF and cold air induction assy, because it feels like a rich condition on the EFI mapping, but try to get anyone to check that out for you under warranty-NOT
  • staceytxstaceytx Posts: 1
    Sorry to hear of all the problems with the newer 97, 98, 99, 00 models. Perhaps trade down like me....

    I am on a budget and decided to trade my problematic 95 Saturn SC2 about a year ago for an 91 (yes 1991) Ford Explorer XLT. I am happy to report that after a little over a year of Hot Humid Houston Freeway is running strong (very strong) at 130 k

    Lucky for me - this was a solid buy for someone on a serious budget.
  • lmc5lmc5 Posts: 16
    I think my brakes may be fixed but then again I thought that a few weeks ago also. The service rep. that tried to blame my brake noise on armor all did apologize for making such a lame excuse for my problems. I got the vehicle back last week and I haven't heard the noise when I turn to the left anymore (fingers crossed). They replaced my brake pads and turned my rotors again. They only charged me for the brake pads (wholesale) and no labor charge.
    I am taking it back in today for the diesel sound that it still makes. They had to order the part for it, thats why they could not fix it when they had it for my brake problem. They said they are going to replace the "timing belt guides" and this should stop the diesel sound. They also said this is the fourth upgrade on this part they have had in recent months. That tells me they know they have a real problem with these guides.
    I hope this will keep me out of the service department for a while but going on the history of this vehicle, I think I will be back for something else. I plan on trading it next month so I hope it will stay fixed until then.
  • sanandtonsanandton Posts: 342
    I sympathize with all of you still driving the Explorer and having problems. I recently traded out of my last one. After owning three, I had become accustomed to knowing the service writers on a first name basis. I am now pleased to say I haven't been to the service dept. with my new vehicle even once (unusual for my explorers) and I certainly wouldn't interrupt my dinner in a diner to speak to the service guy, because I don't even know if it is a male or female! What a great feeling!
  • swn1swn1 Posts: 27
    Like StaceyTX I also have a '91 Explorer but an Eddie Bauer. It has 228,000 miles and climbing and it runs much better than my '99 XLT. Since purchasing Eddie in '95 with 44K miles, I have had no major problems. Sure I have had to replace worn out parts and invest a few grand but it has been worth it. I have more confidence in this and it is more fun to drive than the '99 cheese box clanker. I guess I got sucked in to buying the '99 by foolishly thinking it would be even more dependable than old Eddie, how wrong I was.
  • mklingmkling Posts: 1
    My problem started at 20k+ miles. Pulley tensioner was replaced but did not help.

    Another major problem I had was a "warped manifold" which caused the check engine light to come on and the vehicle to sputter in the morning.

    Still like the engine the SOHC is pretty smooth.

    Anyway, try accessing Ford's "" for a direct response from Ford. I did and Ford contacted, the dealer, the dealer I purchased the vehicle from and me. All within 3 business days.

    That impressed me.

    Good luck. Still think it's a decent vehicle.
  • njdevilsrnnjdevilsrn Posts: 185
    Hello, owner of a 1999 Exploder XLT 4WD w/ SOHC with 13000 miles on it. In additional to the many headaches this vehicle has caused, I now believe it has started the dreaded "dieseling". If this is the sound I think you are all referring to, the truck sounds like a diesel after being started and at idle (in park or drive). Anyone know what the problem is? Potential for damage?
  • lmc5lmc5 Posts: 16
    I have had this "dieseling" problem for about a year. I took the vehicle to Ford in October and they said it was the "timing belt cassette" and they replaced it. About a month later the noise was back. I took it back and they said it was the "timing belt tensioners" so they replaced those. A
    couple of months went by and the noise returned. I took it to a different dealership because obviously the one I was going to did not know what the problem was. I just got the vehicle back yesterday and the noise is gone. This service department told me that it was the "timing belt guides" and when they took the engine apart to replace them they said the other parts that were put on were broken and they had to have been installed that way because these parts can't break. That's encouraging knowing that another Ford service department put broken parts on my vehicle. They also told me that this is the fourth upgrade they have had on this part, so they know there is a serious problem with these "timing belt
    guides". None of this work cost me any money because I purchased the extended warranty when I bought the car.
    I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that it is finally fixed.
    I hope this helps and I hope you get better service than I did.
  • djmbdjmb Posts: 1
    I have a '91 Explorer XLT with 92,000 miles. I am the only owner and have had no serious problems until this past year. The air conditioning doesn't work, the fuel gauge is broken and now the transmission doesn't always shift from second to third, plus the car makes a clunky noise when it goes into 4WD. As you must guess, I am ready to turn it in. The dealer will give me $1,500. on a trade in. I'd like more and am actually considering keeping it as an extra vehicle. Am I nuts??? The problem is I am considering a mini-van!!!!yikes!!! I need the extra room and don't feel like driving a bigger vehicle. Any suggestions?
  • wansley1wansley1 Posts: 1
  • hotrodskihotrodski Posts: 1
    I am the original owner of a 1992 XLT with 156,000 miles. I had some problems in the early years while it was still under extended warranty. Like frozen brake calipers, leaking AC compressor, faulting ABS sensor and an electric switch for the 4WD. Since then its been routine maintenance and service. I was thinking of moving up and purchasing a newer or new Explorer but after reading some of these posts I think I will just fix rust that is starting to form and keep it. It runs great. Yes, its been off road in snow and mud.
  • swn1swn1 Posts: 27
    When you say the A/C doesn't work if you mean it won't blow cool air then you probably need to do what I had done on my '91. The lines were leaking and replaced along with the compressor and a bunch of other related parts for about $1,200. Mine always clunks when going into 4WD but there is a problem with the switch on the electric models. The dash light comes on giving you the impression it's in 4WD when it's really not. After several attempts it usually pops in. I understand there is a TSB to fix the problem. Trannie sounds like it's due for a rebuild, $1,400+. All in all, if I were you and there are no serious problems with the engine, I would sink some bucks into it especially if they are only giving you $1,500 on a trade. You would be throwing away a lot of vehicle and getting what in return? I've mentioned before I have 229,000 on my '91 EB and no major engine or trannie problems and it's running strong. 140 miles a day and 20+mpg. I change the oil every 2,500 and all other fluids as scheduled. If you haven't kept up with regular maintenance, especially the oil, then you may want to reconsider. Good Luck.
  • tonyg2tonyg2 Posts: 1
    Have all the '00 owners gotten their re-call on the wiper motor? The switch corrodes and produces fantum wipes and failures.
  • jf14jf14 Posts: 1
    I have a '92 XL 4 LT, now has 314000K - still running good but had to replace transmission at 260000 at a cost of 3500 CDN. It is now "acting up" again.. I will never buy another Ford, I have put more $$ in repairs than I paid 2 yrs ago. I had an '86 chev blazer, 2.8 previous with over 300000 when I sold (it is still on the road). Want my chev blazer back!
  • tallimecatallimeca Posts: 6
    you did say your 92 had 313,000 on it right??? I should inform you that nothing last forever.
  • penrosepenrose Posts: 31
    314,000 miles is fantastic. You should be running out and buying another Ford instead of writing that you are unhappy. I should be so lucky with my explorer.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I had a '91 Ford Escort. Had the tranny replaced, and for 2 years it would work no more than 3 weeks before breaking again. Eventually the AAMCO place that repaired it, used it in off hours and when i got the car back it was damaged. Their insurance wound up totalling the car and it still wasn't repaired.

    As for SUVs, I have a '97 Isuzu Rodeo with 120K miles on it. All I've done are 2 sets of pads, 1 set of tires and oil changes. Still purrs like the day I took it home. Sorry to hear about all the problems with the Fords...

  • sanandtonsanandton Posts: 342
    Are you really sorry? Or are you actually gloating in joy that you don't actually own one? I actually fit the latter category after getting out of my last Explorer. Good luck to all those still sticking with Ford.
  • aggiedogaggiedog Posts: 238
    I've noticed that a lot of responses to this forum are for XLT problems. Are the owners of EB's and Limited's having similar problems as well? I am on the verge of purchasing a 2000 Limited but I will move to another more reliable SUV (possibly a 4-runner Limited) to avoid major problems in the future. I might add that some friends and coworkers own different models of Explorers with little or no problems.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    The reason I actually bought my rodeo (and went into debt up the butt) was cause i needed something reliable cause I traveled so much (about 50K per year) and the FORD escort even after the $1600 transmisson + $200 extended warranty, just couldn't provide that. I feel for anyone who is stuck with a Ford.

    I'd look at the trooper if I were looking at the Explorer Limited, cause they are a little bigger, and far more reliable.

  • ktrentktrent Posts: 1
    Wow, I came to read these thinking I would find little bits to keep up my Explorer Sport. I bought the car a little while ago with 87,000 miles on it... runs great, looks great, brakes are good, transmissions and clutch awesome, no diesel sound, no stalling, good handling, and no door squeeks. I'm tickled pink about my black beauty, I feel bad for all of you with newer Explorers, but I love mine. After reading this I wont buy a new one, but anyone looking for a good solid, fun car, hit up a '92 Explorer Sport.
  • erubinerubin Posts: 1
    Curious if folks have had similar experiences to
    mine. Appears that the hubs are going and wondering if any of you went with the manual hubs
    instead. Supposedly it's doable and will cost
    a lot less (~$350 vs. $880), but then there is
    the hassle of having to stop the car to engage
    them. I realize that I need to determine how much
    convenience is worth, but would like to hear from
    others if they had any problems going this route.

    Regarding the ABS light, it comes on at various
    times and can stay on for hours. The dealer
    diagnosed the problem as a bad hydraulic control
    unit and the cost is ~$850 to replace it. Any
    others have this problem? Does the cost sound

    I have never used this dealer but did get a

    Thanks in advance.

  • cobra71cobra71 Posts: 3
    I own a 91 4 door XLT 4x4 that is destroying front brakes pads every 10,000 miles. I have replaced the calipers, the flex hoses, the master cylinder, flushed the entire system (all 4 wheels), replaced the rotors and even manually adjusted the rear brakes at each tire rotation to ensure the rear brakes are doing their share of the job. The vehicle only has 80,000 miles on it and other than routine items (tires, brakes, exhaust etc) has not given me any major problems. Does anyone know what the problem is with these brakes and how to fix it?? The dealer said there is no bulletin or major problem that he has heard of with this vehicle's brakes (I doubt this). I bought this car new and it has been very well maintained. I do notice that the brakes drag more on this vehicle than other cars I own when the car is on the jack and you spin the front wheels by hand. Any help is appreciated.
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