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Ford Explorer Maintenance and Repair



  • bri66bri66 Posts: 220
    You said you noticed a significant loss after two trips of 100 miles each. For what it may be worth I wanted to add that my daily commute to and from work is 100 miles a day on US Rt95 driving at normal speeds of 70mph. Also as Mazman1 mentioned check your oil dipstick, all three engines that I had all developed rust\pits that was very visible. Try to wipe your dipstick with a paper towel and see if particles of the paper remain on the stick. Lastly on my second engine Ford replaced the service manager noted not only dye they added to my radiator mixed into my oil, but they also discovered coolant residual deposits on some of the spark plugs they had pulled to evaluate. Good luck.
  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229
    Same darn thing happened to my 1994. The whole AC system was trashed by the compressor clutch. Thank the Lord it was under warranty. My a/c clutch made a really loud noise when it died... easy to diagnose.
  • rysterryster Posts: 564
    Hi!Dealer didn't fix the noise. They claimed it was a loose running board and tightened it "under warranty". Noise still there (they didn't even bother to take the door panel off and see if there were loose components in there). So, they charged Ford $40 to tighten something that probably wasn't loose. No wonder these things cost $30K, all of the erroneous warranty repairs are being passed on to us. Going to let them try again in a couple of weeks. I'll let you know if they get it right.
  • Hi all --

    I purchased a 1996 Ford Explorer Sport Lemon from AutoNation USA. The problems are too numerous to list here. I do have an after-market warranty on the car through Fidelity Warranty Services that definitely helps offset the cost. A few questions for the wise members of this board.

    1.) Is there a lemon law that will be ABLE to help me.
    2.) Are there any additional recalls (after the tires and sway bar links).
    3.) Do these cars tend to blow through rotors? I am on three sets in 24 months (No, I don't lean on the brakes)
    4.) Does the ABS system have any known failures?
    5.) Is there any significant electrical problems with the car? I have blown 3 sets of tail/brake lights in the last 24 months.

    There are a variety of other issues, but I don't see the need to go on any more in this post.

    Thank you.

  • I have an '97 explorer and after the dealership did recall work on the timing belt guides now when I am accelerating and it runs thru 20K rpms
    I get a vibration thru the gas pedal. It is real prevalent when I get up to 55mph. has anyone else had this problem?
  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229
    Sounds like they did something incorrectly when the dealer serviced it.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    steve_ "Tires, tires, tires" Oct 4, 2001 3:54pm

    Vans, SUVs and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards

  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229

    Beyond what the linked article says, the NHTSA recall only covers Firestone tires made in Quebec and Wilson, NC prior to 1998.

    The good news here is that Ford and the Explorer gets some vindication and possibly some cash back from B/F on the tires that have been replaced voluntarily by Ford.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Here's another article:

    Feds side with Ford

    Vans, SUVs and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards

  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    I would say that all evidence and all investigations have shown Firestone has been blowing smoke, has no data, and had killer tires with serious variations between plants showing nobody was in control over there, while Ford is substantiated at every turn and statement.

    anybody has any contrary evidence, the Tauzin committee is looking for it. c'mon, send it in.
  • mookie14mookie14 Posts: 252
    every once in a while this pitifull truck sounds like a diesel the gas pedal gets hard every time i went to ford they say no problem bullcrap ive tried injector cleaner several times temp fix same thing over again i dont know what i got fuel filter put on same thing so for now ive got a yr in a half left with this diesel for now someone tell me what to do mookie 2000 exploder xls
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    don't know about the gas pedal, but there are known issues around the "standard" V6 4.0 liter engine. namely, cam positioners in the heads. the positioner nylon stop blocks come apart, the cams shift, and the engine sounds like a diesel. it was supposedly fixed in 1999 with metal blocks, but that should be considered. any shop guy ought to know that sound and be able to localize it with a screwdriver handle against their head if they don't have a stethoscope.

    if it is truly exhaust gas escaping, I had a loose manifold to converter pipe gasket, and had to have that tightened on my 2000 V8. mine whistled. if it sounds awful from underneath you should be able to put on the parking brake and block the wheels, and crawl around underneath with a feather tied to a stick and find the exhaust leak yourself.

    the things you've tried look like a carbon chase in the cylinders... unless you've mucked about putting in funny plugs or premium gas... or had an EGR valve lock up... it's hard to believe the heads are gunked with carbon, and that would seem to me to be more like a ping than a diesel thump as a result.

    being a 2000, I'd tend to look for an air or exhaust leak anyplace from the manifolds back to the tailpipe... hitting a rock could have holed the system someplace, or something could be loose and blasting gas when the engine starts getting worked.
  • mookie14mookie14 Posts: 252
    i got a 2000 xls 4.0 i got 19 mths left on the lease which im getting out of it in 4-03 but what do you all think im going to be dealing with this in trms of problems with this whatever you want call this taxi i call it it has 36800 miles on it so far when i trade in it will have 53000 miles on it the problems so far is i put injector cleaner in it many times no help one time the check engine light came on took to ford clown switched the spark plugs said some injector cleaner was on it since i have put more cleaner in it no problems one time it took 3 times to start since problems. is it the spark plugs oxygen sensor? no light has came on since another thing i did not buy more extended warranty from ford from warranty gold is they good or should i cancel with them and go with someone else thank for a response ps. im not buying ford hell no!!!!!!!! chevy, toyota, or honda, also can you get out of your lease with 4 payments left with out them saying repo on your credit report and not get a ford im done thaks.
  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229
    Did you not get the mailing about the warranty extension to 5 yr 72K miles (M00012) on the Timing Chain Tensioner and lower manifold gaskets? If you have the SOHC, I bet the problems all come from the bad timing chain.

    good luck. Sell that thing!
  • Thanks alot for quick advice/response, I do have SOHC, and I will relook through recalls (I have had 2 plus the tires), this in addition to replacing seals (3 times) to keep wheels from squealing like a pig, I guess I will just eat what I am in the hole for (owe 16k on truck), (40k miles) and sell it to the first person in line. Anyone have any idea what I should expect to get from a dealer on it - 2000 XLT, SOHC, CD changer, running boards, 40k miles ??? Thanks again
  • zman3zman3 Posts: 857
    Go to "Real World Trade In Values" in the Smart Shopper Forum, I believe. There are dealers there that will tell you what your vehicle is really worth. Given the tire fiasco, be prepared to take a royal beating.
  • mookie14mookie14 Posts: 252
    i got no info on the warranty where do find out if it is on the 2000 xls on the timing chain let me know mylanton 694or mazman. thanks ps its a 4.0 sohc i think so.
  • rysterryster Posts: 564
    Hi,I have a 2000 Explorer XLS 4x4, 4.0L OHV engine, 5-spd auto, with sport package, privacy glass, running boards, cd player, keyless, etc. 14K miles.Dealer recently quoted me $14,600 trade-in value. Considering the truck is only 11 months old, this is quite a drop. Needless say, I haven't traded yet. I would not expect a '00 XLT with 40K miles to fetch more than $17K for a trade-in from a dealer. You may be better off trying to sell it privately.
  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229
    If you have an XLS you have the 4.0L OHV engine, not the SOHC. There was no recall / warranty ectension on the OHV engine.
  • rysterryster Posts: 564

    Took my Explorer to the dealer (second time back for my clunking/popping driver's door) yesterday.

    The dealer rode with me when I got there to hear the noise. When the door popped, they actually seemed interested in getting it fixed. I had tried telling them it was very noticeable; they now agree.

    Well, after having the truck all day they decided it needs a new window run and a new piece of moulding (which piece I don't know). The parts were ordered yesterday and should be in on the 18th. They have me scheduled to have the parts installed on the 19th.

    We'll see what happens after they are done next Friday.

    On a positive note, I was able to get my rear wiper working properly. It had reached a point where it wouldn't sweep the middle of the rear window. It would simply lift itself over the center of the window and only sweep the left and right sides. After buying 3 or 4 new wiper blades with no success, I let it go for a few weeks. While driving behind another Explorer, I noticed their rear wiper lock nut was visible (the shroud that covers it was gone). Not realizing the plastic shroud was covering the lock nut, I went home and tightened the nut which, of course, was loose. Voila! Now the wiper works like new. My parent's Mountaineer had the same problem, so we tightened the nut and their rear wiper is working properly as well. Leave it up to Ford to design a system with a lock nut that tightens clockwise and a rear wiper that sweeps counter clockwise. Noticed the '02 Explorers have a brand new rear wiper assembly that sweeps clockwise.

    Other than the driver's door noise, and an obnoxious dash rattle first thing in the morning, the truck is very comfortable and a pleasure to drive. I would consider another Explorer in the future, although the styling of the '02 models is still growing on me. Has anyone else noticed that the exterior styling of SUVs is starting to become very minivan-like?
  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229
    I have the same noise in both doors. It gets worse when I go over cobblestone roads. I took the entire door apart, and found that the noise comes from either the door lock actuator or the metal arm of the window mechanism that hits the steel bar support inside the door. (You would be amazed how small the steel bar is!). I padded the bar and hit the actuator with WD40. But the noise is only decreased a little. It is very hard to diagnose this noise because the interior door openings only offer limited "sight" of the mechanisms and the connections.

    Please let me know if the dealer fixes the rattle problem.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    loose lockdown nut? mercy, that I gotta check out. I have had success in reducing the central skipover by pulling the wiper arm into service position, pulling it back, and hitting the pivots and spring in the arm with heavy silicone... but it didn't clear the whole issue up. further details to come.
  • ace10ace10 Posts: 137
    it's finally over. our perpetually woeful 1997 p.o.s. f.o.r.d. exploder is gone. the good folks at carmax bought it from us over the weekend. here are the details. selling price $11K. mileage 39K, loaded xlt, ohv v6, good condition. probably in need of $500 to $800 in repiars and paint touchups.

    this sis the same exploder whose tranny went at 27K miles, the front driveshafts about 1K later, perpetual moaning from the intake system, rear wiper failure, more squeaks and rattles than one could possibly count, non-firestone-recalled wilderness at's, and a rocking driver's seat.

    what a pile of JUNK! good riddance. and good luck to the sucker, err... buyer who takes it from the carmax lot for the asking price of $15K.

    again, good luck to all those stuck with their own rolling miseries.

  • I have a 98 Explorer Sport, in which the arm rest has broken twice. It would not be such a big deal if the part was not over $200 to fix. Please let me know if any of you have had the same problem. The service man at the Ford where I live said that he has seen this happen before.
  • rysterryster Posts: 564

    Well, I was supposed to have had my new door parts installed today in an attempt to get the popping noise fixed.

    I called the dealer yesterday to confirm the parts had arrived, to which the dealer said yes. However, they cannot get me in until the morning of the 24th. They were booked today to the extent that they were finishing up a backlog of vehicles from yesterday (not good; they are over booking themselves).

    The dealer said it would take 3 hours to install the window run and the moulding. Good thing Ford is paying for it, especially at $65/hour labor. I do not know the exact description and warranty cost of the parts yet. In the meantime, the popping noise has grown MUCH louder. I can't wait to see if this works. If it does, it will be nice to go back to the good old days of Saturday morning trips to the dealer every 5K miles for simple oil changes and no more unscheduled repairs for a while. If it doesn't work, I don't know how much longer I can put up with the noise.

    I'll let you all know next week the results.

    Have a great weekend!
  • Praise for my beloved Exploder!!!

    Actually (knock on wood) besides a tempermental coolant reservoir the 2000 XLS has been a champ. She's been taking a good beating lately (at least for my trucks) as I have put almost 2000 miles on it in just over 6 weeks.

    Anyhow...just completed a round trip run to Boston for a cruise (honeymoon, yeah!) and the drive was great. About 270 miles of highway with fall foliage each way, made just under 19mpg (and that's with vent shades, a hood deflector, and mud flaps...stuff my dealer says lowers the mpg). Could have used a bit more power here and there, but I know the limitations of the 4.0 OHV.

    It's good to be back.
  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229
    After months of dealing with this rattle in the front door, going to the dealer and having them tell me that they cant find anything loose.. although they hear the rattle.. and I even took the door apart myself and could not find what was loose.. I finally found the cause this weekend..... no thanks to Ford. I cant believe that it was so obvious that we all missed it for so long! The metal post on the B pillar that the door's latch attaches to was loose enough that the door was able to move up and down enough to rattle in the opening while latched in the closed position. I had to buy a special star socket to tighten it.. and it worked like charm! No more rattle! Oh yeah! That beer is tasting much better right now!
  • brophbroph Posts: 85
    I currently have a 96 with the OHV v6 & am considering getting a newer explorer or mountaineer with a v8. After reading thru these posts and seeing how many problems the v6's are having, has anybody had any problems with their v8's? ie. cam tensioners, tranny's etc. Any info would help.


  • mazman1mazman1 Posts: 229
    The 4.0L SOHC V6 is the engine with all the problems. The older 4.0L OHV, although a little less powerful, is a good engine that is relatively trouble free... granted, it is not a great design, and could use a bit more HP, but it gets the job done. It did not prevent me from getting speeding tickets in my 1994 Explorer. I have had lots of problems with my 2000 Explorer with the SOHC engine. Some issues are build quality, some are quality control related, and some are design flaws. The V6 SOHC engine is a fault ridden, badly designed engine. It has 3 timing chains! I've gone thru 2 sets of cam tensioners already.. and mine is not even 2 years old.

    The 5.0 V6 was an old design engine taken from the LTD Crown Vic. That was a good engine that was pretty powerful, reliable and got pretty much the same mpg as the V6 SOHC. So, they dropped it and replaced it with a new 4.6L V8. The new 4.6L V8 is a new Ford design, and like most new designs, will probably be up to the consumer to be the guinea pigs and road test it for Ford. Personally, I would wait a year until they hammer out some of the bugs in the new Explorer.
  • brophbroph Posts: 85
    Thanks for the info.

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