1997 Ford Windstar GL 3.8 from North America


Great performance and overall I would rate mine at a 8 out of 10


Well, lets see here:

Interior lights stay on, spray switches with WD40 helps $2.

Couldn't start one morning, bad neutral safety switch $24.

Wheel bearing @ 120k $40 lifetime warranty.

Replaced Sway bar when bought. broke in half pass side $118 new.

Transmission shutters at about 60mph - 65mph. Can get a re-manufactured with 1 yr unlimited $750.

Idler pulley replaced $12.

Belt tensioner replaced after 3 belts and figured problem $25.

General Comments:

I am not sure about all of these Windstars, Mine has treated me pretty well with normal maintenance. Although I have seen a lot of problems with others.

I guess it probably seems cheaper for me cause I do all repairs myself. Compared to dealer and shop costs, if you can fix it, do it yourself. Sometimes you can take it to a shop for free estimate and simply repair yourself, considering don't try to rip you off and say that it is one thing that's costly and it's actually another more cheaper fix.

It is still in great condition, and plan on keeping it for a long time, especially considering I use it for SPL Competitions. 167.3dB Baby!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th May, 2006

1997 Ford Windstar from North America


I am disappointed with this car


I, too, have had problems with the dome lights staying on and the chiming of the doors. The lights stayed on all night and the next day, my battery was dead. I had to buy a new battery, and took out all the bulbs to prevent the draining of my new batteries, but the dinging still occurs. It usually happens when the car is idle at a stop light.

The passenger slide door has a mind of it's own; the majority of the time I can't get it to unlock. Then one day while driving on the freeway, the sliding door just flew open. Thank goodness my children were not with me.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 27th October, 2004

28th Nov 2004, 11:37

The sliding door issue can be solved by simply making sure that the sensors on the doors are clean. If they are dirty you will have problems.

7th Dec 2004, 17:05

I also have similar problem with 1996 Ford Windstar. Interior lights come on and door ajar alarm and lights sound. Passenger window no longer works, nor do the rear window vents. I bought car second hand and wondered if it had been in a flood due to so many problems. I will try cleaning the sensors on sliding door to see if that helps the false signal. Thanks for the hint.


4th Dec 2005, 18:18

We have a 1996 Windstar, and the chiming and lights will drive you nuts after time.

What you have to do is get some contact cleaner and spray it into the latch area; it cleans the sensor. The car has a liquid switch, kind of like the old mercury switches in a home heating unit. After time, it collects road grime and makes it think the doors are open. We have not had many problems with this van.

1. We had the belt break, due to the wearing out of a pulley bearing. This caused the CV joint boot to get damaged; $200.00 to replace that.

2. The other issue we are having now is the windshield wiper motor broke; my brother replaced it, but it is still broken (thanks to the poor quality replacement motor, a 4 hour job has to be redone. THANKS ADVANCED AUTO).

3. It needs a starter.

Everything still works in the van. All windows, switches, A/C, etc. The paint stayed good (surprising considering the leprosy as seen on my Lincoln Town Car 1992, and all my other Fords). Still looks good and runs strong. Thinking about buying a Freestar.

1997 Ford Windstar GL V6 3.8L from North America


Take a chance? New US car makers' motto


The speedometer, I cannot imagine for the life of me that Ford would put such a cheap piece of electronic in that car. What were they thinking? Past 40 MPH it no longer function properly, it jerks, swings and dances, as if to say you're about to get a ticket or better yet, everybody is passing you. The price to fix is $500 too expensive, and after reading all reviews Ford should recall that speedometer piece of junk.

However, I found a clever solution (Say thanks to me afterwards). For about $100 I bought a Garmin GPS system (Try the Foretrex 101 or Forerunner 101). It works as a street mapper for finding places, has all the US city maps, forests, parks, and yes Rest areas, attractions, etc...etc... wonderful piece of electronic. And yes it gives speed too (kph/mph) very very accurate. It helps you navigate, it has a compass, timers, reminder, alarm clock, etc... I cannot stop being excited about that purchase.

The passenger power window stopped working. It goes out of alignment rather quickly, I'm changing two tires just after 20,000 miles.

Few more headaches, but nothing major.

I also noticed the AT started slipping. I'll take it to the mechanic for a check, and hope nothing major.

General Comments:

So far I'm sort of neutral, except for the speedometer and few minor things (middle seat is quite small I thought). I'm still not sure about the tranny though, it will probably dictate whether I'll ever own another Ford.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th June, 2004