I have a '95 Windstar which has developed a loud knock, (similar to a rod knocking). My mechanic explained to me that it is very common for this make to incur this condition. He went on to explain that almost all Windstars he has repaired have a "lifter related" knocking that develops in the right-front cylinder (passenger-end/firewall-side). This requires either pulling the engine to repair @ a cost of $400.00 - $500.00 plus the diagnosis to determine if it's a lifter flattening out, a rocker arm bolt backing loose or a broken valve. The total cost is almost as much to fix as to purchase a rebuilt motor.
The problem seems, according to the mechanic, to be common in Ford Windstar vans with the V-6 motor. He feels it is a manufacturer's "built-in defect".
If I ever buy another van/truck it will surely not be manufactured in the USA! The Japanese made Toyota trucks routinely average over 250,000 miles with routine maintenance. My motto? "Go 'Yo"
Wow! Every story I read seems like a deja vu. Around 112K miles, we blew the head gasket, replaced the motor (not with a free replacement by Ford) and at 138K miles, I am calling it quits due to a quote from the dealer to replace the catalytic converter being in the thousands (ouch). Just bought a nice 2004 Toyota Siena LXE Ltd!
My 95 Windstar is for sale; a nice van when I bought it, then the transmission went. Oh well, I fixed it. Then the computer; oh well, I fixed it. A little upset now but oh well, I fixed it. You could have hit me with a 2x4 when the head gasket went. $5062.00 and some change; you guessed it, a new motor. Ford of Canada were polite to hang up when I called. Never again will I buy a Ford anything. But hey! I have got one for sale. I wonder if Ford will buy it?