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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
87,278 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.

1998 Ford Explorer brakes problems

brakes problem

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1998 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #9

Dec 222011

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 131,000 miles


The Explorer brake peddle went to the floor to stop the vehicle. There was smoke coming from under the hood. In a few seconds, the truck was in flames. Police and firemen were called to the location. They put the fire out in a few minutes.

- Hammonton, NJ, USA

problem #8

Nov 172011


  • 236,000 miles
I was driving 45 mph when the accelerator went all the way to the floor, I put the car in neutral and then speedometer went all the way up to the max, and coasted off to the side as soon as I could. This caused the engine to be damaged and the car is not drivable.

- Aurora, IL, USA

problem #7

Nov 242010

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
1998 Ford Explorer VIN#[xxx] registered to the state of Nevada; original owner: [xxx]...registered because of disability reasons to wife [xxx]...we were involved in a car crash accident...resulting to a total loss at baker, California because of the vehicle cruise control recall which could cause the tire to be treaded...pushing the car to be out of control..while the brake fluid leaking...and the air bag safety failed to develop (open). I think Ford Motor Company is the primary responsible of the mechanical failure of the workmanship and the car design. I got in touch with their legal department: Product recall & liability. The accident report# [xxx] ncic#[xxx]. the injured driver [xxx]; passenger and the permanent disabled passenger were taken to barstow community hospital emergency room. I need your help in removing all 1998 Ford Explorer from the road; this car could cause major & fatal injuries to the public at large. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #6

Dec 232010

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • 95,000 miles


I own a 2000 Ford Ranger and a 1998 Ford Explorer. I believe the accelerator pedal and the break pedal are too close together on both vehicles. On at least four occasions I have experienced my tendency to have my foot on both pedals at the same time when in a situation where I have to stop quickly. I T seems that I "panic" to some degree when in a situation where I must stop quickly to avoid a collision. This may be a very isolated personal 'quirk" as it were, but I have caused two rear end collisions so far and I now know that I am pressing both pads when trying to break. I know this because I remember vividly how my motor was accelerating while I thought my foot was only on the brake and I could not understand why my vehicle was not coming to a stop when most likely I had plenty of space available to make a sudden stop and avoid hitting the vehicle in front of me.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #5

Mar 152010

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The contact owns a 1998 Ford Explorer. While driving approximately 10-15 mph she engaged the brakes and the pedal went almost to the floor. The ABS system activated with limited braking ability. He stated that none of the warnings lights illuminated. One year later the failure recurred. The contact referenced recall 09V399000, vehicle speed control and stated that the recall was performed on the vehicle last year in 2009. The contact stated that the dealer did not inspect the ABS control module connector and repaired it as necessary per the recall. The contact scheduled an appointment with the dealer next week. He called the manufacturer and filed a complaint. The failure mileage was unknown and the current mileage was 164,000. Updated 12/14/2011 updated 03/02/11

- Charles City, VA, USA

problem #4

Apr 032010


  • 160,000 miles
98 Ford Explorer, ABS lockup dry weather, slow speed.... now has accelerated during one of these episodes....relatively certain the edge of my foot did not catch the gas pedal...

- Oakland, NJ, USA

problem #3

Nov 142005

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 90,000 miles


Contact stated that right after purchasing the vehicle he had replace the brakes, tires, fuel filter, the fuel injection was cleaned, the anti lock sensors where replaced, the windshield was replaced. The air bags are also deployed. While driving the vehicle it vibrates on the left side. He took the vehicle to a mechanic they put the vehicle on a rack trying to line the vehicle. It would not line up. They found that the ball joints bad, also the motor mounts are broken. The mechanic told him that the frame is bent beyond repair.

- Victorville, CA, USA

problem #2

Mar 252004

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23,500 miles
While driving down a hill, the driver applied the brakes. The pedal went to the floor and continued to pick up speed. The driver lost control of the vehicle and hit a tree. Both frontal air bags did deploy. The driver was not hurt. The vehicle was totaled. The hill was approximately 2 1/2 blocks and the consumer would normally drive down the hill with the brakes applied.

- Spokane, WA, USA

problem #1

Feb 282003

(reported on)

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles
The brake sensors were faulty, the driver seat bolt had broken and fell while driving, the driver door lock was defective, and the brake warning lights system was inoperative. Scc

- Little Rock, AR, USA

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