12th Jul 2006, 00:08
Interesting comments regarding the poor reviews of Windstars. The 2006 Freestar I just purchased is the third I have owned. 2000 Windstar, 2003 Windstar, and now the 2006. The first two were leases, the third, I have purchased. I have been very satisfied with the first two and don't find any truth to the reviews by some experts. Yes, the Sienna and Odyssey are great, but also very expensive. Everything is relative. The 2003 did present a problem with the rear air conditioning; it just didn't work and Ford's attempts to fix it failed, although I did not go back for the third attempt. I should also mention that I put on 103,000 kms in 4 years on the 2003. The alterantor went at 102,000 kms. That's about it. The lease just expired and I purchased the 2006 Freestar Sport and I did buy the extended warranty which takes me to 120,000 kms... just in case. Frankly, reading all these reviews is confusing.
3rd Oct 2006, 10:33
I to have run into problems with the AdvanceTrac. Its happened several times where it engages due to wet road, gravel...etc. But then will not disengage. The van simply coasts, if you punch the gas it stutters like mad and goes nowhere. Turning off the AdvanceTrac fixes it temporarily, But its the same issue, until you actually shut the whole thing down and restart it. Dealership had no clue, and found nothing wrong. It's happened several times now. I'm essentially waiting till it snows, and I can reproduce it at will.
Other than that, the van's OK. Honestly its not what I wanted, but needed the space and it was in my price range. I'll never be totally happy with it. Mine is a very biased opinion.
22nd Feb 2007, 09:44
16,000 mile review - I am the original poster of this message.
I have had only one issue since the initial review. The front rotor warped and I had them turned under warranty at 12k. This is a very common problem with these vans, from what I have read. This is not a big deal in my mind - when it comes time for new brakes, I will buy higher-end after-market rotors to avoid this issue.
The only complaint I have is that there is a whistling noise that is heard at idle. It occurs only when the outside temp is between approximately 45 - 75 degrees. It sounds like a pulley or bearing noise and is intermittent. The dealer claims they did not hear anything, which was annoying. I will take it in again for diagnosis, as I don't need a water pump or alternator failing. It's strange because I am unable to zero in on this noise when I walk around the outside of the van...
Anyway, to date maintenance includes:
Trans fluid change at 10k
Regular oil changes at 3-5k with full synthetic
Rotating tires every 8k
Air Filter at 16k.
We love the van and it's a great family vehicle.
16th Jun 2007, 12:33
I have a 2006 Ford Freestar SEL. It is fully loaded with leather, DVD, power sliding doors/liftgate, etc.
My wife and I really like the Freestar for the features and room. But our biggest complaint is that Ford decided to add a little bit "American muscle" to this minivan with a 4.2L V6. Meaning that this van is anything from being fuel efficient. I haven't calculated the MPG, but with a digital readout telling you how many kilometers left to fuel in the tank, it is obvious that we aren't getting the correct ratio.
For example, if we start off with 120 kms (as per the digital readout), and we drive 20 kms on the odometer, we will have about 80 kms left on the digital readout. I apologize if that is confusing, but this van has very poor fuel mileage, thus, it can't compete with the other minivan manufacturers.
With that being said, we will invest in a K&N air filter and hope our fuel mileage gets better. We have switched over to full synthetic oil, and we had the front rotors replaced due to them being warped.
As for the lack of competition from Ford (with their minivans), well, Ford and GM are shutting down their production line for minivans after 2008. We will be left with Dodge, Honda, and Toyota. Honestly, my wife and I will be keeping our Freestar for another 2 years (at least), and then we will get into a Mazda CX-9. We will still need a vehicle that seats 6 (we have 4 children together "extended family"), and by that time, hopefully Mazda will have the bugs worked out in the CX-9.
9th Jul 2007, 17:21
I am the original poster of this review.
Updates - 25,000 miles.
The following issues were addressed hassle-free from the dealer:
New front rotors installed (again) at 24,500. The rotors were turned once at 10k due to pulsing. They warped again, and this time Ford replaced them.
Strange squealing noise turned out to be the fuel pump. Though not faulty, dealer still replaced to eliminate the annoying noise.
Passenger side of windshield - weather-stripping was falling off and it needed to be re-glued.
I still like this van a lot, but was hoping for better quality - rotors fixed twice before 25k!!! Come on Ford.
I just hope these bugs will slowly go away / end.
28th Sep 2007, 10:01
You can switch the readout to average mpg or the metric equivalent. That will make it easier for you to know how it's doing.
I did put a K&N filter into my Windstar and did not notice any change in fuel mileage. It seems to get a little more air, but the electronics seems to add more gas as well. Driving style will make the biggest difference.
23rd Jul 2009, 12:04
My wife's Monterrey had a problem that sounds similar to yours. I would describe it as "uncommanded braking on dry pavement". You try to accelerate but the car will barely move because the anti-lock braking system is applying the brakes. Our dealer solved it by cleaning all the connectors on the wheel sensors. Others have solved it by replacing the ABS module. You can make it stop happening by turning off traction control.
You can read about this on a Ford Forum at:
You can also get there by searching on "Ford Freestar Advancetrac Problem" in Google.
Despite the nuisance that was, my wife loves her Monterrey. Generally the Advancetrac works great. We got caught unexpectedly in a snow storm and drove 60 miles on icy/snowy roads with good control (factory tires.) The year we bought our Monterrey, it was the only minivan available with ESC (electronic stability control) and I am so glad we had it when we needed it.
10th Sep 2009, 00:23
Hello again, I am the original poster of this chain. The van now has 60k on it. Nothing has broken/no issues...
Hope I didn't jinx it.
I recently flushed the cooling system, and plan to do plugs and wires very soon.
30th Oct 2009, 22:15
I just purchased a 2006 Ford Freestar with 50,000 km. I love the van, the back up beeps, the side mirror flashers, the solid feel. It is a heavy van but gas isn't an issue as work is only 1 mile away. I like the van for long distance trips which leads to my issue... after highway driving for about 20 minutes I hear a whistle, like a kettle whistle, from the front end. If you hit the brakes it stops. The dealer could not hear it on their short test drive. They took it in and checked the bearing, said all was OK but the noise is still there after 20 minutes on the highway. Help! Anyone know?