Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 6
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
83,592 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2003 Ford Expedition engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2003 Ford Expedition:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2003 Ford Expedition Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #70

Apr 092013

Expedition 8-cyl

  • miles


I was on interstate 95 southbound when I heard a loud boom followed by a flapping sound I pulled onto the shoulder to see what happend when I noticed gas coming from the area where the spark plug was at I shut the car off and called for a tow.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #69

Apr 232012

Expedition 8-cyl

  • 104,045 miles
Recently purchased this 2003 Expedition with the 5.4L engine. Purchased on 12/20/2011. Since owning said vehicle I have had two spark plug failures. On cyl 8 and cyl 3. the first incident happened at a speed of about 25 mph. The second and recent happened driving highway speed, cruise set to 65 mph. The plug ejects from the cyl causing damage to the coil, and possibly creating a fire hazard. There was no recent tune up to my knowledge.

- Buckhannon, WV, USA

problem #68

Apr 182012


  • 103,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Expedition. The contact stated that the vehicle was parked and shut off when he noticed flames erupting from under the hood on the driver's side. The fire department extinguished the fire. The vehicle was not taken to have the failure diagnosed. The failure and current mileages were 103,000.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #67

Apr 052004


  • 25,000 miles


The transmission has failed twice in my Ford Explorer, first at about 2500 and now, after a rebuilt engine was installed, at 205,000. As well, I have had differential problems, moon roof issues, paint issues, cracked head, etc.

- Andover, NJ, USA

problem #66

Nov 192011

Expedition 8-cyl

  • 175,000 miles
While driving on the freeway our enging just turned off with no warning. This has happened 3 tmes. This could cause serious accidents. We do not know the cause of this but I think Ford should figure it ot and fix it.

- Manteca, CA, USA

problem #65

Apr 042012

Expedition 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Expedition. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for an inspection however, the vehicle failed as a result of excessive rust corrosion in the core radiator support bracket. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer was notified and they informed the contact that there was not a recall related to the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 95,000. Updated 05/08/12

- Oakdale, PA, USA

problem #64

Apr 032012


  • 104,000 miles


A month or so ago the truck started running rough and engine light came on. It turns out it was spark plug #4 misfiring. Replaced it and all was golden until yesterday (4/3/12) when I heard a loud pop upon starting the truck and then it was idling rough. Check engine light came back on and spark plug #4 is misfiring again. We bought this truck used and it's been one thing after another. So disappointed in Ford. Hope they address this issue and due the proper thing.

- Mastic, NY, USA

problem #63

Mar 152012

Expedition 8-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
While driving at a low rate of speed, my Expedition made a loud pop and then strange knocking noise. Upon further inspection I noticed I had blown out a spark plug and my coil pack was blown apart as well. When I called a local Ford dealership (thomas Ford, stillwater ok) the man laughed and said "no it is not a recall, but absolutely should be as this is a very common occurrence in the Triton motor." I ask that you re-look back into this "common" problem as this is a terrible thing to overlook.

- Mulhall, OK, USA

problem #62

Nov 012011


  • 131,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Expedition. The contact stated that while driving approximately 35 mph, the vehicle suddendly stalled. The contact stopped the vehicle on the shoulder of the road and was able to restart the engine. The failure continued intermittently. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for a diagnostic test. The mechanic stated that all eight ignition coils would have to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The approximate failure mileage was 131,000.

- Detroiut , MI, USA

problem #61

Apr 272011


  • 130,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Expedition. The contact stated that while driving 70 mph, there was a loud popping noise coming from the engine compartment. The vehicle was coasted to the side of the road and stopped. The contact noticed that a coil pack and spark plug blew out from its cylinder. The vehicle was towed to the contact's residence and diagnosed by a private mechanic. The mechanic replaced the spark plug and coil pack. The dealer did not acknowledge the failure. The failure occurred a total of two times per month. The failure mileage was 130,000 and the current mileage was 134,000.

- Ringord, PA, USA

problem #60

Nov 112011

Expedition 8-cyl

  • 106,000 miles


Driving home from a near by store I stopped at the stop sign and then got ready to go and heard a loud pop and the car sounded like a dirt bike my husband came to get me and he said that the spark plug blew out since then its been blowing out alot and we have 4kids so a small car wont do I also still pay payments on the car so I don't think its fair!! I saw online that many people have the same problem so please do a recall already I love Ford so much but now that this keeps happening I don't think I will ever get a Ford again so please recall it please !!!

- Riverside, CA, USA

problem #59

Dec 282011

Expedition 8-cyl

  • 117,201 miles
My wife was driving with our infant son and our teenage daughter in our 2003 Expedition XLT 4.6L 2X4. She heard a loud pop and the vehicle lost power and started smoking and shaking violently. She thought the Expedition was going to blow up. We had the Expedition checked out and the cylinder number 7 spark plug blew out. The aluminum threads in the head gave and the spark plug blew out, the injector kept spraying raw fuel and the coil ignited it. When all this happened it burned the ignition coil, coil boot, spark plug and the coil harness. Now we were told we would have to have the cylinder head replaced. We love our Expedition and I considered buying a new one, but I don't know now.

- Dripping Springs, TX, USA

problem #58

Sep 192011


  • 75,500 miles
While driving at highway speeds the engine cuts out/dies.

- Spirit Lake, ID, USA

problem #57

Nov 192011

Expedition 8-cyl

  • 97,000 miles
After making a complete stop at a traffic light I made a left turn and began to accelerate when I heard a loud pop which at first I thought was a tire blow out. The engine was running so erratically that I could feel it in my steering. We inspected the vehicle for a flat when we noticed every tire was fine. I opened the hood and removed the top cover to the engine to discover a spark plug laying on top of the engine and the coil that was once attached blown off of the plug and damaged off to the side still connected to its electrical source. This cold have caused a fire. For the record these plugs were the original factory spark-plugs. Via the internet I have discovered this website to file a complaint.

- Holbrook, NY, USA

problem #56

Aug 162011


  • 104,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Expedition. The contact stated that the engine bolts were rotted and causing fumes to enter the vehicle. The contact stated that the smell of the fumes caused difficult in driving the vehicle. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer where the dealer advised that the nickel bolts weakened after time and began to rot. The dealer stated that the failure was common in the particular year, make, and model. The failure mileage was 104,000.

- Long Meadow, MA, USA

problem #55

Jul 312011


  • 106,000 miles
I just experienced my second spark plug blowout. The first was the #4 plug in February and now the #3 in July. Both repairs have been over 700 dollars each.

- Rhome, TX, USA

problem #54

Jun 262010


  • miles
Factory spark plug blew out of engine. I found numerous complaints of the same problem and was surprised to find there has been no recall.

- Springfield, MA, USA

problem #53

Mar 072011


  • 143,000 miles
Spark plug striped and blew out of cylinder head on my 5.4L engine.

- Matherville, IL, USA

problem #52

Feb 222011

Expedition 8-cyl

  • 135,000 miles
A spark plug was ejected from my 2003 Ford Expedition and is a known problem and deadly safety (fire) problem.

- San Marcos, TX, USA

problem #51

Nov 022010


  • 176,000 miles
Went out to warm up our Ford Expedition for work. Upon starting it heard a loud boom and the engine sounded loud. Had it towed to garage. Found out that the #7 spark plug blew out. For safety sake, Ford should admit to the defect in the engine, and issue a recall.

- Franklin, WI, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?