1996 Ford Windstar 3.8 liter from North America


Defective engine!!!!!


My Windstar was great until last week when the both head gaskets blew. Ford is refusing to pay for repairs even though the engine has a known defect and the 94/95's have an extended warranty to cover the head gaskets.

General Comments:

If Ford would make good on the head gaskets, I would say it is a great car. But until then, I have to say the car is a lemon.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 22nd August, 2000

10th Sep 2001, 13:37

I purchased a 1996 Ford Windstar new and now at 25,000 miles the mechanic where I purchased the Ford Windstar told me my head gasket was leaking, and if the antifreeze gets into my motor it would naturally ruin the motor. Also the timing cover is seeping, and the right rear shock is leaking. Ford should recall the 1996 as they knew this head gasket was faulty, as it was the same faulty gasket they recalled in the 1995s.

6th Sep 2003, 06:01

My 1996 Wind star had head gaskets replaced at 41,000 miles. Dealer and Ford motor Co. deny that this is the same problem as 1994 and 1995 Wind star and Taurus with same engine. What can we all do? Also have friend who is transmission repairman, be prepared for transmission problems with the Wind star.

30th Aug 2004, 03:36

My sons 1996 Windstar mini van with 121,000 was in need of a brake job so we had both front and rear done. After this we noticed that the front struts are making a rattle noise. We was wanting to know if this is where the caster camber plates as well the struts give it up. Doing the bounce test the struts seems to be fine, no leaks or extra movement.

13th Apr 2007, 09:25

I have a 1996 for windstar. It has been to the shop several times in the last few months. They have replaced the valve body, gears, and fixed a seal in the transmission. They have also replaced the computer. Yet despite all of this when I am driving the van will down shift into 2nd gear and stay there. They are not sure what is wrong with it so if you have any ideas please let me know. I have been with out my van for some time now and really need it fixed. So if you have any ideas I would love to hear them.

13th Apr 2007, 23:05

How does the engine run? If it is laggish, your tranny will kick down all the time to try and get power, check fuel filters, possibly a tune up if engine is laggish.

1996 Ford Windstar GL 3.8 from North America


Almost there


A misfire in 2 of the cylinders left it only operating on 4 cylinders, that happened one month after we bought it, fixed gratuit.

ABS light continously comes on, dealer says it's only a sensor and it's nothing big.

Mirrors shake and make a loud noise on the highway.

Windows rattle when down and closing a door.

Brakes squeak.

Loud power steering.

Rattling sliding door does not close all the way.

Sometimes stalls when at idle.

General Comments:

A fast comfortable van, but too many reliability and minor problems for me.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 19th August, 2000

1996 Ford Windstar from North America


Lemon! Big Lemon!


The speedometer head needs replacing after only 4 years. Of course the van is out of warranty and of course the crappy extended warranty doesn't cover it. The repair is over $500.00, and when I was in the shop asking why it was so much another Windstar customer pulled me aside and said, "Don't bother I'm on my THIRD ONE!".

The junk yards have no speedometer heads because it is such a problem with these vans. I was also told that it was a major problem with the Ford Taurus. Ford is still up to it's old tricks and crap. I will NEVER buy another Ford again. I will for the rest of my LIFE bad mouthing Ford and their crappy service. I hate the company and will not buy anything from them ever again.

General Comments:


Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 11th July, 2000

16th Apr 2001, 08:22

1995 Windstar, blew heads at 65,000 miles of use. The reason I'm looking for information is that it now has 83,000 miles and threw a rod in the engine. This car never used a quart of oil and the oil was changed at 3000 miles. No symptoms whatever, running fine at eight in the morning, threw a rod at twelve that day.