29th Dec 2008, 03:01
I read all of the above statement, and this is not a coincidence; my car is having the same problems, plus more.
I drive a Ford Windstar 2000. OK, first off when we bought the car it was nice. I was so excited; this is me and my husband's first car, so you know we were very happy, so after buying the car in 2006, the same day we purchased the car, we went home, then later we wanted to take a drive with our new car, and it would not start. We called the dealership and they towed the car at our expense, which I thought was very weird.
They told us it was the battery, which they replaced with a new one, so after that the car was fine until ONE week later, when it would not start again. It turned out the battery was being drained, and that the car had serious electrical problems. We called Ford, but they said if we can get it fixed, then they can pay half of what we paid to get the car fixed, but my car's electrical problems are so bad that when we took it to get a diagnosis, the car would not read on the machine.
If anyone is still willing to take class action, I'm all in, and they should pay for this, not us. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm serious, God bless.
26th Mar 2009, 01:32
"Chirping sound from the engine of a 1998 Windstar"
I have owned this 1998 Windstar since Dec. 1997 - to today, Mar. 25, 2009. It has reached 210,000 KM (120,000 miles) We've done the normal and expected servicing like brakes, exhaust and tune-ups. It did have the expected interior light problems - we simply disconnected them. Moreover, we did have problems with the front left electric lock - must be operated manually, and the right rear-view mirror interior switch is loose from kids playing with it. These items don't bother us and have not been repaired..
So, I can say it has been a fine car. Still runs like new - but last Fall we noticed a squealing (or regular "chirping") at idle speeds. A visit to the local Ford dealer revealed that this was likely very serious - and may require hundreds, even thousands of $ in repair. But they just happened to have time to do it now...
Doubting them, I simply took a can of WD-40 and sprayed the S. belt while the car was in idle. (I used most of the can) That was several days ago, and there has been no further noise. Nothing - just a quiet comforting hiss... A neighbor said his Taurus was the same, and tried it too. Great results as well.
Hmm... Dealer was a bit hasty maybe? Why not give it a try..?
Pitt Meadows (Near Vancouver. British Columbia)
26th Mar 2009, 16:39
"It did have the expected interior light problems - we simply disconnected them."
I don't understand why so many people go through the trouble to disconnect the interior lights. I switched mine off at the dimmer, just to the right of the light switch. No tools required, and you can do this while driving!
Thanks for the hint about the chirping S belt!
1st Jun 2009, 20:41
I have seen mention of the engine light with lean condition codes. As a mechanic by profession, I can tell you this is a simple fix, but the parts do have to come from your local Ford dealer. All you need are called plenum o-rings and isolator bolts. These parts can be installed with a simple 10mm quarter drive shallow socket, deep socket, and wrench. You will have to disconnect a few vacuum lines in the front of the upper plenum and a couple that you will have to reach from the rear. While the plenum is removed, if the runners in the upper plenum are loose, remove them. I have seen several of these vans come in the shop that dealers have bought needing engines and that was what was rattling. Amazing that plastic hitting plastic can sound like a rod knocking. Also with the door ajar light and the dinging, the most common thing is the switch located on the drivers door latch. This also has to come from the Ford dealer.
3rd Jun 2009, 23:27
I share a 1998 Windstar with my mother, I mainly drive it, it has 127,000 miles on it. We have had not many big problems with it besides a transmission leak and some electrical problems like seems everyone else here!
The lights on the inside have been a lasting problem for some time, but I just pulled out the relay switch for the lights, located right under the steering wheel to the left.
I have learned to make do with the van and deal with its problems, but now we are having a problem with the power steering pump. It always whined, but now it is giving out while driving and giving very little help in steering. I am wondering if anyone else have had a problem like this? What kind of cost? Please if any one has a Windstar or problems like, this email me!
5th Jun 2009, 09:53
I have a 2003 Windstar and the interior lights flicker. I did not pull the relay switch. I turned the dimmer wheel to the off position and that worked like a charm! I even can turn the light on if I need it! It's amazing what a light switch can do.
When my power steering whined to much I added Lucas Oil Power Steering Fix. That's high viscosity stuff. Later I learned that Ford uses Mercon ATF (Mercon IV, I believe) in the power steering. Lucas Oil transmission fix might be the better additive.
My suggestion: first check the fluid level. You probably kept up with that. Second: add Lucas Oil transmission fix.
Third: change out all fluid.
Fourth: check the cost of a power steering pump and related parts at auto parts stores and get a free estimate by your trusty mechanic. Compare the prices for the parts and see how trusty your mechanic really is.
23rd Jun 2009, 21:32
I purchased my 98 Windstar (3.8L) in the summer of 1997 right off the lot. It was manufactured in Jan/07 in Windsor, Ont.
The van has treated our family very well. Living in Northern Ontario has put the vehicle through extreme conditions, from -30 Celsius temperatures in winter to +35 Celsius in summer. It performed thousands of short trips over the years shuttling kids to and from school, etc. and endured long trips to Florida and both coasts.
In 2000, while on an East coast trip, hauling a trailer, I noticed occasional slippage in the transmission. When we arrived back home, I had the fluid changed out and sensor replaced and performed great for another 80,000 kms. I was told that regular change out of the transmission fluid is vital. I think most people ignore this fact. When you sense any irregularity in performance... don't ignore it!
Today while cruising the highway, I experienced a sudden drop from overdrive to second gear @ 80-100 kms/hr acceleration which I thought.. "This is it"! I let er' cool down for a bit then continued on for another 40 kms before it acted up again. I managed to get home, have my "old stock car mechanic" change the fluid and good as new. I had also previously had problems (stiffness) with steering.
The local Ford dealer said right off the bat, "You need a new steering pump.. roughly $800+". My ol' mechanic looked at it, said the fluid was very dark and thick, flushed it out and replaced with new fluid. It's been good as new for the past year. The van now has 221,000 kms and my mechanic is confident she will surpass 300,000 kms.
Other than a few similar electrical problems as others mentioned... door locks not functioning as they used to. I can't really complain. It's been a great vehicle. Thanks!