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CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2002 Ford Explorer is hands-down our worst vehicle on record. "Avoid like the plague" is putting it lightly.

The 2002-2005 Explorer has a very well-established record of expensive transmission failure at under 100k miles. The Explorer has an enclosed transmission which is typically replaced with a rebuilt transmission at a cost of almost $3,000.

Another common problem for the 2002-2003 Explorer is wheel bearing failure at around 90k miles, with a typical repair bill of $500 to $1000 depending on how many wheel bearings failed.

Adding insult to injury, the 2002-2005 Explorer also has a massive problem with the rear panel cracking. While it's a minor annoyance compared to transmission failure, ironically the crack usually goes right through the Ford logo.

8.5

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$633.00
Average Mileage:
107,570 miles
Total Complaints:
8 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. take apart dashboard and replace blend door actuator (8 reports)
2002 Ford Explorer AC / heater problems

AC / heater problem

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2002 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #8

Dec 022013

Explorer XLT 3.8V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

This is the second time, I had the blend door fixed two years ago almost to the day. Ford and my local dealer are no help only willing to take my money.

- , East Haven, CT, USA

problem #7

Dec 012012

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I love my ford explorer....but the Heater does not work in it, so I have to drive to work when it has been in the 20's with no heat....and my daughter has the same year and make , and just last month her heater has stopped working to.....what can be done about this?

- , Hamlin, TX, USA

problem #6

Mar 312008

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

although FORD KNEW OF THIS PROBLEM (THE ACTUATOR CONNECTED TO A FLIMSY PLASTIC TAB ON THE BLEND DOOR. OVER TIME THE TAB BRAKES AND FORD THEN WANTS $2000 TO REPAIR - MOSTLY LABOR TO TAKE THE WHOLE DAMN DASH APART) AND HAD A TSB, THEY REFUSED TO REVEAL THE SOURCE OF THE PROBLEM TO ME UNTIL AFTER WARRANTY EXPIRED, THEN REFUSED TO FIX IT. SOMBEECHES!

- , League City, TX, USA

problem #5

Dec 012011

Explorer LX 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I THINK ITS AWFUL FORD MOTOR COMPANY THATS BUILT ITS WEALTH IN THE UNITED STATES , WOULD PRODUCE AND SELL TO THE PUBLIC WHAT I BELIEVE TO BE A KNOWN ENGINEERING FAULT WITH THE HEAT/AC BLENDER DOOR DESIGN. PLEASE ! AND I ALSO THINK THEY ENJOY THE MONEY GAINS FROM THE EXPENSIVE REPAIRS. IT TRULY PRESENTS REAL HAZARDS TO THE OPERATOR/PASSENGERS BUT YET FORD WILL NOT RECALL THESE VEHICLES. I DO PLAN TO TAKE LYING DOWN AND ENCOURAGE ANYONE WHO HAS OR CURRENTLY HAVING THIS PROBLEM TO CONTACT YOUR LOCAL BETTER BUSINESS CHAMBER OF COMMERCE OR GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATION

- , Gastonia, NC, USA

problem #4

Feb 082011

Explorer XLS 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 137,000 miles

First off the blend door actuator went out on my '02 explorer. No big deal bought a new one easy to replace not too bad. A couple of weeks later found that the blend door was stripped too. No big deal either right, I'm pretty car savvy. YEAH RIGHT!! So I buy what I thought to be the part I needed. A buddy and I started to check it out with no luck as to where or how to get at it. After several attempts I figured, well it's almost summer no need to worry right now. I'll do it over the summer. It sat in my garage until now. Yeah, it's winter and it doesn't work. We did figure out how to do it finally after 8 hours of messing with it. Got the door out and guess what TOTALLY FREAKIN DIFFERENT FROM THE ONE I BOUGHT A YEAR AGO! I said no big deal maybe we have the wrong one. Went to every parts house out there they all carry the same repair kit claiming it is for my vehicle. Bull it's too small for the compartment and it wouldn't work anyway with the actuator. So I have no blend door in it now and I guess I will search until I find a solution or I manufacture my own. Yeah this is some total bull $h!t.

- , Broken Arrow, OK, USA

problem #3

Jun 082010

Explorer 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

This is lame...Ford should fix this for FREE. Obviously a poor design. Hello!!! Recall…

DO NOT GET A FORD, ESPECIALLY THE EXPLORER.

- , Thousand Oaks, California, USA

problem #2

Mar 082010

Explorer

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,563 miles

At first the heater was blowing cold air. Then the air and heater quit working. I had to ask my mom to drive my daughter to school so she could ride in a car with heat.

- , Gautier, MS, USA

problem #1

Sep 012008

Explorer XLS 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

blend door breaks on these vehicles, not a question of if, but when.

- , Park Ridge, IL, USA

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