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.

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.

10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
5 / 0
Average Mileage:
69,390 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.

2002 Ford Explorer miscellaneous problems

miscellaneous problem

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2002 Ford Explorer Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #18

Dec 122010

Explorer

  • 105,000 miles

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

I have a 2002 Ford Explorer and the transmission just went out on it. I will tell the story from the begginging. Ok so I was about 30 mins away from my home and driving on the freeway back home when the od light started blinking very fast. Then I get off the freeway and stop and the red light then when I started to go the transmission started doing all sorts of crazy sh*t it was changing gears like crazy and finnaly settle out. Then right before I turn in my drive the transmission just quits! it just stopped! I put it in park then drive and nothing...no sound.. no movement it would just roll backwards. So now it sitting on the side of the road where I pushed it to. All of this happened in 30 mins! nothing was wrong before this happened.!!!! please someone help and lets get this to be recalled!

- Fort Leonard Wood, MO, USA

problem #17

Jul 062010

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • miles
I bought a Ford Explorer, V-6 4X4 and the transmission light started flickering and the transmission started shifting hard when I tried to drive it home.

- Virginia, IL, USA

problem #16

Mar 152009

Explorer

  • 120,000 miles
Back glass breaking upon shutting door, drviers door

- Whitesburg , GA, USA

problem #15

Dec 212008

Explorer

  • 85,000 miles

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

2002 Ford Explorer with broken coil spring, crack under rear window, and transmission slip, broken parking brake shoes in assembly. Same complaints that seem to be common. And same with everyone else, no help from Ford.

- South Berwick, ME, USA

problem #14

May 272008

Explorer 8-cyl

  • 27,389 miles
Ford Explorer rear differential - replaced 3 X's over 6 years.

- Lindenhurst, IL, USA

problem #13

May 122008

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
Noticed a grinding and whining noise coming from right side of my 2002 Ford XLT Explorer. Also thought that I needed a new exhaust the car was making such loud noise. Went to 2 different garages for pricing, I needed both front and rear bearings replaced actually the front bearing was about to fall off both garages stated. Also the loud noise from my exhaust it was missing one bolt to the cover, covering the exhaust and or catalytic converter. Also 8months prior the cars transmission was replaced. All of this expensive and costly repairs happened at 79,000 miles. This is a very dangerous vehicle and reading all of the other complaints this problem needs to be considered for recalls from Ford. My family is very important to me and I use this car to travel and Transport my family. I am very concerned and Ford needs to investigate the problems arising with the 2002 Ford XLT Explorer problems and fix them. So far I have invested $5500 into this car I would not even get this for a trade in value. Please consider my complaint and the many others very important. Thank you

- Canton, OH, USA

problem #12

Oct 272005

(reported on)

Explorer

  • miles

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

Consumer requesting service bulletin on the 2002 Ford Explorer.

- Hicksville, NY, USA

problem #11

Jul 192005

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,054 miles
1) check engine light came on. 2) dpfe sensor was found to be defective 3) dpfe sensor was replaced at my cost even though there is a recall for vehicles with same year, make and model

- Fairfield, CT, USA

problem #10

Oct 102004

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,500 miles
Front passenger window (automatic windows) stopped working. My Explorer was just a little over the mileage limit on the warranty. I took it to the local Ford dealer and was told that it would cost over $300 to repair. The modulator in the window had failed. I called Ford and they agreed to the repair for $100. That satisfied me. Now, the same thing has happened with the rear passenger window. If I used these two windows excessively, I could see something possibly happening. But, I don't - I'm the only occupant of this vehicle 98% of the time. Is there anything that I can do to get Ford to repair this obviously defective part?

- North Richland Hills, TX, USA

problem #9

Aug 042004

Explorer 4WD 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,000 miles
I bought a used 2002 Ford Explorer (used) on 2/8/03, with @43,000 miles, and at times, I experienced a lurching in my car, with banging between shifts most often when switching from drive to reverse, but sometimes when strictly in drive, even at complete stops, such as red lights. As it was becoming repetitive, I brought the car in for service with the dealer I purchased it from - larson Ford in lakewood, NJ. The first service was on 5/24/04, in which they said it was a transmission problem, and replaced the driveshaft and yolk, with a cost of $879.75 to me. As the problem was not corrected, I brought my car back on 8/2/04, at which time they told me that the solenoid was not responding, they replaced it, and tried to charge me another $900, which I refuted, because I had already paid for this to be "fixed". unfortunately, the lurching when switching from drive to reverse (with brake on)still occurs, although not as violently; however, I have experienced sudden rises in RPM for no apparent reason, even at complete stops with my foot on the brake. This happened as recently as last week, but since it does not happen every time I am stopped, I am hesitant to bring it for service, because it will probably not be apparent during a test drive since it is a sporadic occurrence. The car is a 2002 Ford exlporer, 4.0 liter, V6 engine, automatic with O/D.

- Brick, NJ, USA

problem #8

Dec 212004

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles

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

I was driving, when I heard a loud noise comming from underneath my Ford Explorer.I thought for a second or two, that I had ran over something in the street.the vehicle, slowed.when I stopped for the traffic light, it would not move.the od off light was flashing.the only way I could move the truck was in neutral.I had the truck towed to joe rizza Ford in N.riverside, il.they told me that the transmission had to be replaced.I purchased this truck from rizza new on 09/11/01.59,000 miles was on the spedometer.I believe the transmission was defective.I was told it would cost me $3,400 to get it replaced.I had no choice but to go further in debt and buy another vehicle.

- Broadview, IL, USA

problem #7

Jul 062004

Explorer 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,000 miles
My Ford Explorer transmission it was at 36000 miles, my car was tuned and serviced as shudule, and it cost a total of $1700 to fix. Which the car is only 2 year old. The air condition stop working in December of 2003 and at the time my car was barely 1 year old thier has been many other concern with my Explorer that I am making $500 payment on. I belived I have purchase a defected car.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #6

Feb 112004

Explorer 4WD 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Paint on hood and roof of SUV bubbling and cracking. Purchased SUV only two years ago on 4/11/01. It is a 2002 and is only one year old and the paint is cracking and bubbling terribly on the hood and starting to crack and bubble on the roof as well. Took to dealer, crouse Ford, hampstead, md and they told me it was probably birds! please tell me that's a joke! (: if birds are going to scratch the paint that badly then that still indicates that it is a faulty paint job. I also had the truck in for body (fender) work. The body shop (showcase) also brought to my attention the cracking and bubbling of the paint. They also contacted crouse, and again crouse never responded. Showcase (the body shop) had to call a few times before they received a response, and nothing was resolved. I think that crouse should cover this expense being that the truck is only a 2002. I also have given crouse, hampstead much business getting my vehicle serviced at least 6-8 times. The paint on my one year old SUV should not be cracking or bubbling!

- Upperco, MD, USA

problem #5

Jan 122003

Explorer 4WD 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Paint on hood and roof bubbling and cracking.

- Upperco, MD, USA

problem #4

Sep 082002

Explorer

  • 4,400 miles
In the unlikely event there is a problem that is totally "unfixable" then Ford has sold me a product that is faulty, and the product should be replaced. However, I would like for the car to be fixed and I am willing to leave it in the shop as long as it takes to correct the problem so that the car will be safe to drive again.

- Richardson, TX, USA

problem #3

May 022003

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,131 miles
Rear window/hatch, including hydraulics and steel frame exploded while I was driving my 2002 Ford Explorer. Glass and debris flew about 15' behind my car and was all the way up to the front seats. Thankfully I was alone in the vehicle. Someone sitting in the middle or back seats would have been hurt. A baby in a rear-facing car seat might have been blinded, or worse.

- Corona, CA, USA

problem #2

Mar 172003

(reported on)

Explorer

  • miles
Leases a 2002 Ford Explorer. Was notified by Ford finance manger that it was mandatory to purchase two insurance policies totaling over $1000.

- Ganesvoort, NY, USA

problem #1

Jul 102002

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Last summer (July 2002) during a military move from ga to AZ I noticed that my windshield had a large piece of glass missing on the outter right edge that you could not see until you actually got right up on the windshield. Part of it was visible to and part of it was hidden behind the rubber seal that is around the windshield. This windshield was actually installed with this piece missing from it when the vehicle was built and sent to the dealership. Also, the rear glass hatch, gas shock twisted from its original position and caused the window to be off center by about an inch or more. After fixing it three times it had to be replaced. Both of these problems (the windshield and the gas shock) have been fixed by my local dealership and thus far have held up. There are numerous other complaints that I have on my vehicle that include the elecrical system not functioning properly. When you turn the truck on sometimes all the dashboard lights stay on as well as the interior lights and you have to shut the truck down and back on several times in order for them to go out. The truck will sometimes stall at take off or will lurch while shifiting into a higher gear and has totally shut down while driving down the road on a few occasions. The trim paint on the doors, both front and passenger has faded there are rusted spots in the paint on the top of the vehicle, and the hood has a very bad orange peel effect on it with grit in the paint. The left rear speaker has busted and the panel on the rear hatch below has broken loose as well as one of the plastic bracket covers on the back of the passenger seats. PE04045.pco

- Ft Huachuca, AZ, USA

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