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 2004 Ford Explorer one of our worst vehicles 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 2002-2005 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:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
71,465 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.

2004 Ford Explorer windows / windshield problems

windows / windshield problem

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2004 Ford Explorer Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #59

Sep 112007

Explorer

  • 40,000 miles

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

Sun visors have been replaced twice. Horizontal plastic panel with the Ford logo has cracked and been replaced 3 times. Current one on vehicle is cracked. Sent an E-mail to Ford and was told basically "too bad--out of warranty ". formoco has known of this problem on both the Ford and Mercury but has done nothing to fix it because it is not a safety issue. And of course this " damage " will lower the value of my vehicle when I sell/trade it for something other than a Ford.

- New Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #58

Dec 222014

Explorer

  • 123,000 miles
The rear lift gate window of my 2004 Ford Explorer exploded while the vehicle was parked. According to the Ford dealer, this apparently is something that is known to happen.

- Haddonfield, NJ, USA

problem #57

Jun 232014

Explorer

  • 125,500 miles
While opening the smaller window in the back of the car, the window started to fall. Luckily there were two people to catch it. I noticed the passenger side hinge was broken. We usually take our infant around to the back of the car while we load things. Fortunately, we had already buckled her in. Had the glass fallen or we not paid attention, it could have seriously injured her or us.

- Royse City, TX, USA

problem #56

Dec 012013

Explorer

  • 103,000 miles

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

My 13 yr old was loading groceries while the window was popped up it fell w/O warning severely hurting her head rt bracket on upper window broke can cause serious injury.

- Joliet, IL, USA

problem #55

Feb 122013

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 148,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that while driving approximately 55 mph, the sun visor became detached. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 148,000 and the current mileage was 154,000.

- Altadena, CA, USA

problem #54

Dec 202012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 83,658 miles
The rear window hinge pin (passenger side) has corroded and broken allowing the window to fall off of the rear tail gate. I noticed the broken hinge before using the lift gate which has prevented it from falling off thus far. I have read that this is a very common problem on this vehicle and Ford will not own up to the problem.

- Massillon, OH, USA

problem #53

Nov 102012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 77,614 miles

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

After a day of shopping I pulled into my driveway and parked my SUV. I went to open the rear window hatch when the left side came apart from the vehicle and landed on top of me. Fortunately the right side of the window was able to stay intact while my husband was able to run to my aid to lift the door up. I am four months pregnant and my three year old son was standing by my side. I have read that many complaints about this issue have been made to the Ford corporation regarding this problem but they continue not to rectify the issue at hand; while leaving vehicle owners helpless when this situation occurs. I read that this was a good avenue to report this issue since Ford continues to ignore the problem and wonder if my husband would not have been in shouting distance what would've happen to my son, unborn child and myself!!!!!

- North Olmsted, OH, USA

problem #52

Oct 192012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 112,000 miles
Rear hatch window hinge (left side) broke and released the glass while driving. Window fell to one side. I had to make an immediate emergency stop. It was difficult to prop window to a safe position and lock down. It must remain locked down until I can fix it.

- Chico, CA, USA

problem #51

Oct 232012

Explorer 8-cyl

  • 115,000 miles
The rear liftgate window hinge broke off and the entire rear window fell on my wife. The hinges are made of a white type of metal that has corroded and sheared off. The pins inside apparently broke and it didn't appear to be falling off, it just came off. The window hit my wife in the arm and leg. We were lucky it wasn't one of our kids closing the gate at the time or that they weren't inside when it happened or this could have been a lot worse. After searching online for information about this issue I found thousands of complaints about this exact issue and hundreds of post of injuries incurred from this. Ford recalled other vehicles with the same issue with the same part and yet the 2004 was never included. Something needs to be done. A part over time shouldn't break off and cause a safety hazard.

- Muskego, WI, USA

problem #50

Sep 262012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • miles
When closing the rear window hatch, the left hinge that holds the glass completely let go of the glass. Fortunatley my husband was the one closing it and was able to catch the glass before it broke the other hinge and pulled the glass off completely. The right hinge was also bent, as the window will now not sit level to be put back into place. This should be recalled, as there is a large hazard of th window falling. What if my daughter had been standing underneath as usual, or he had not been able to catch the window and it broke and sen "exploding" glass pieces everywhere. I see that this appears to be a very widespead issue when looking through complaints. Also, the tailgate in my Explorer has also experienced the same mysterious crack that so many other vehicles have had. One day it was fine, then it was cracked. Could these issues be somehow releated? or is the entire hatch just full of flaws.

- Naples, FL, USA

problem #49

Sep 102012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 208,000 miles

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

This issue involves the driver side sun visor. The plastic piece on the left side of the visor that holds it in place on the ceiling has broken off. When you hit a bump or dip in the road the visor falls down and blocks your view to see what is going on in front of you. This is a real safety concern to me. I don't want to hit someone or something because of this. I am asking for a recall to be issued. Thanks

- Ashland, MS, USA

problem #48

Jul 052012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 61,800 miles
The hinges that hold on the rear window are starting to break. The 02 and 03 model Explorer were recalled for this but Ford refuses to issue a recall for the 2004 models even though this appears to be a huge issue affecting a large numbers of Explorer. I have caught it before total failure but many people have had the glass come loose and injure them. It is a huge safety issue.

- Denver, CO, USA

problem #47

Apr 192012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 116,000 miles
On 19 Apr 2012 while opening the back hatch window, the passenger side hinge of the window failed. When this occurred the driver side hinge was bent and the hydrulic lifts popped open the window rather rapidly which could have severely injured me if it hit me. I was unable to close the window myself so I could drive again. A bystander helped me out to close it. After reading other reports and complaints online, this is not an isolated incident for 2004 Ford Explorer.

- Lithia, FL, USA

problem #46

Dec 162011

Explorer

  • 100,000 miles
While loading groceries, I noticed the hinges to my rear window were cracked. I quit using the window in fear of it breaking. The cost to replace the plastic hinge is completely outrageous! I also had a friend call today and his hinge broke, thankfully the glass did not break. Ford knows the hinges are defective. Why would a major company like Ford overlook this problem and take a chance of many law suits due to their negligence" there are over 1600 complaints recorded. How many more is needed for a recall" Ford needs to stand behind their product. I hesitated buying this Ford because my first Ford caught fire while I was driving it. Thirty years later I still think of all the bad stories and now, I want my Chevy back.

- St. Marys, OH, USA

problem #45

Mar 232012

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • 124,000 miles
Rear window hinge fractured causing glass to fall off of rear door. This is the same problem as the 2002-2003 Ford recall #04S20. Ref NHTSA campaign id number 04V442000. Ford does not include the 2004 Explorer in their recall but the problem is the same. I have heard of other 2004 Explorer owners having the same problem and the service manager at the dealer who replaced the hinge said it is a common problem on the 2004 model year. I feel that the problem extended into the 2004 models and should have been included in the recall of the 2002-2003 models.

- Middletown, DE, USA

problem #44

Dec 212011

Explorer 6-cyl

  • miles
The hinges that hold on the rear window are failing and I cannot open the rear window because I am afraid that it will fall off. Other year Explorer were recalled for this very reason and I cannot understand why the 2004 model was not recalled. The parts are the same as they were in other years.

- Sterling Heights, MI, USA

problem #43

Jan 042012

Explorer 6-cyl

  • miles
While at work my rear lift gate window exploded. At first site I thought it was vandalism but nothing (car chargers/cd's/ road side kit etc) was taken. After further investigating, things just didn't add up nor were consistent with the site of my destructive rear window and uplifting of the panel underneath the shattered glass (which was mostly on the ground as opposed to being inside my vehicle.)

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #42

Oct 212011

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 130,000 miles
The rear passenger window hinge broke causing the glass to fall on top of me and hit me in the head and knock me down to the ground.

- Wichita, KS, USA

problem #41

Nov 142011

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 51,000 miles
Cracked panel below rear window. Also, rear window appears loose.

- Paradise, CA, USA

problem #40

Nov 202011

Explorer 6-cyl

  • miles
www.carcomplaints.com/Ford/Explorer/2004/accessories-interior/supports_for_sun_visors_cracked.shtml the sun visor clip has broken and I am unable to use the visor, it just dangles. It can cause an accident. One needs to be able to use the visor for sun protection. I feel Ford should do a recall because so this is happening in too many vehicles so there has to be a manufacturing problem. [xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Broken Bow, OK, USA

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