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CarComplaints.com Notes: The previous generation of Explorer was so awful that the redesign in 2006 was greeted with much optimism. That didn't last long.

The transmission continues to be the Explorer's worst reliability problem. Owners report shifting hard & lunging, typically starting as low as 40k miles with a $1,600 average repair bill. On top of that, the radiator is prone to failure around 60k miles. Repairs for the radiator run $500 to $1,000 & many owners report they've had to replace the radiator multiple times for leaks, indicating a possible design defect in the OEM replacement parts.

Ford did make some significant changes to improve handling and safety. Electronic stability control was added in addition to side impact air bags, but beyond that this is a vehicle that should be avoided at all costs.

9.2

really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
$102.00
Average Mileage:
48,288 miles
Total Complaints:
23 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (20 reports)
  2. cleaned mass air flow sensor run techron additive (1 reports)
  3. replace throttle body (1 reports)
  4. use fuel with techron to clean the fuel injectors (1 reports)
2006 Ford Explorer engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Ford Explorer Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #23

Jan 082013

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,690 miles

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

I too had to have my 2006 Explorer checked for the same issue. They couldn’t find anything wrong either. Didn’t charge me for checking though. Then I did some more digging, and found some pretty good answers to this stalling question. Here are some that seem to work wonders so far:

  1. Run Techron gas or some type of Techron additive in you gas tank for two weeks to clean the fuel system up. You may have clogged fuel injectors.

    2. Clean the Mass Air Flow Sensor with CRC MAF Sensor cleaner. Taking care not to drop or damage the unit. They are very expensive to replace. The sensor sends information to the main computer to allow the engine to run at optimal performance. If the sensor is dirty, or has never been cleaned, it can confuse the computer into thinking there is a problem and cause a stall. You’ll need a star type screw driver set and $5 for the cleaning spray. Also checkout Youtube videos on how to clean the MAF sensor. It’s easy and very inexpensive to fix.

    I’ve tried this now for a week and had zero issues with stalling-out so far. Hope this helps.

    Update from Apr 8, 2013: I too had to have my 2006 Explorer checked for the same issue. They couldn’t find anything wrong either. Didn’t charge me for checking though. Then I did some more digging, and found some pretty good answers to this stalling question. Here are some that seem to work wonders so far:

    1. Run Techron gas or some type of Techron additive in you gas tank for two weeks to clean the fuel system up. You may have clogged fuel injectors.

      2. Clean the Mass Air Flow Sensor with MAF Sensor cleaner. Taking care not to drop or damage the unit. They are very expensive to replace. The sensor sends information to the main computer to allow the engine to run at optimal performance. If the sensor is dirty, or has never been cleaned, it can confuse the computer into thinking there is a problem and cause a stall. You’ll need a star type screw driver set and $5 for the cleaning spray. Also checkout videos on how to clean the MAF sensor. It’s easy and very inexpensive to fix.

      I’ve tried this now for a week and had zero issues with stalling-out so far. Hope this helps.

- , Medford, OR, USA

problem #22

May 242012

Explorer XLT 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,900 miles

I have a 2006 Ford Explorer and now I am experiencing the same issue that a number of you have already experienced with the stalling with the car is moving slow or at a traffic light. It has been occurring since May of this year and has been in the shop three times (two different dealers) and no one can seem to locate the problem. I agree with others that it is very dangerous because we all could get hit in the back or killed because of this issue. If anyone has a solution and no longer have this issue please let me know.

Thank you,

Gloria

- , Stone Mountain, GA, USA

problem #21

Aug 302012

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles

Has anyone found a solution for this? My wife's 2006 Explorer does this 1+ times daily. She gets it up to speed (30 or 40 mph) and when coming to a stop, it shuts off. It's completely unsafe to drive because of the lack of power steering. This is what happens:

NOTE: Additional info, exceedingly hard starts recently

1. Idling to a stop, car shuts off 2. Turn key to off, shift to N or P 3. Restart car 4. All is well (until the next time)

PLEASE POST WITH ANY SOLUTION

- , Woodinville, WA, USA

problem #20

Jun 302011

Explorer

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles

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

Similar to other complaints I've read concerning the 2006 Ford Explorer, ours too sometimes stalls when slowing down or when at a complete stop. Started having the problem this year when the weather temperature got hot. Doesn't happen every time we drive it and there is no way to tell when it's going to happen. Have had it to the dealer 3 times and they can't diagnose the problem. When they drive it, it doesn't stall. Has anyone found a solution to this problem?

- , Lebanon, TN, USA

problem #19

Jun 222011

Explorer Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

I had this vehicle since new - it is my wife's car so I don't drive it much. However we were out one weekend and I was driving and the car stalled on me four times before we got it home. I was told it was probably the fuel filter since I had never changed it that was a month ago. Car ran fine then it happened again. no warning no check engine light no nothing. I'm not sure when it will do it again but I don't trust the vehicle anymore, I am going look into any possible recalls for this vehicle. If anyone has found a solution I would appreciate it. I feel the vehicle has been a good one but the problem is getting to be annoying and unsafe to drive. I think if Ford knows about this they should be able to find a solution.

- , Queen Creek, AZ, USA

problem #18

Jun 212010

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,000 miles

While slowing down to go around a corner, my car just died. This is the second time in two months. If you turn the car off, it will restart. This time it died again and didn't want to start again. The wrench light came on and finally went off, but now the transmission light is on and won't go off.

This happened last fall and my mechanic couldn't find anything (the computer didn't show any codes), but he cleaned the carbon off the speed sensor and it worked great until a month ago. it goes to the mechanic again next week - hopefully it's nothing major, but it seems like Ford should be able to find a reason behind these vehicles stalling (dying is more like it). I'm lucky - I live in a rural area and this has never happened in any traffic.

Update from Jul 5, 2010: It wasn't the transmission light that was on, but the engine light. The mechanic scanned the car's computer and there were no codes. Had the transmission light reset and it hasn't come back on, but I don't trust the car. This problem only happens in hot weather, when I'm slowing down to make a turn. What can this possible be???

- , Gilboa, NY, USA

problem #17

Apr 202010

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

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

Driving to pick up kids for a car pool. No one else in the car. Vehicle travelling at 45 miles an hour, took foot off gas to slow for an upcoming curve in the road. Engine light came on, gold wrench light came on. Engine started stuttering and jerking. Pressed gas pedal, engine caught, continued. Removed foot from gas again, same result as above. Removed foot to slow for another curve, engine light, wrench, and 2 other lights came on, engine jerking, car stalled. Engine restarted and immediately stalled again 2 times, then restarted. I went about 200 feet and the engine stalled again, this time it would not restart. Called for assistance. When assistance arrived about 15 - 20 minutes later, vehicle cranked up. Engine light and golden wrench light came on,but car did not stall out. Took to service center. They recommended documenting if gas is on or off every time stall occurs, then they will recommend service solution

- , Grayson, GA, USA

problem #16

Jan 022010

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

THIS IS TIME number 8 - Driving from Ohio to Georgia our 2006 Ford Explorer randomly stalled out on the interstate highway. Mostly when coasting, but sometimes when cruise control was in use. Very scary as we have a 15 year old who was driving the vehicle, but stall did not occur during that time. Worried that it will happen when they are practicing driving tho'.

Vehicle stalls, driver shifts to Neutral, vehicle USUALLY restarts immediately on first try. Sometimes it take two attempts, car restarts, shift back to drive and continue down the road. Took to dealer, told them we had car in for this issue before. They said they could hook it up to the machine and do diagnostic. We had them do this. They found NOTHING wrong, but "had" to charge us anyway. Suggested it might be the transmission or throttle body, but they would need additional time/money. We drove the car home.

- , Grayson, GA, USA

problem #15

Apr 262010

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

This about the 10th time this has happened in the last 18 months. We have had the vehicle to FORD service multiple times. Each time there is a new solution. This morning they told us that we need to use gasoline with TECHRON (at least 2 - 3 tanks full to give it time to work in the system) to clean the fuel injectors.

- , Grayson, GA, USA

problem #14

Mar 222007

Explorer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 21,000 miles

I am back to give you an update on my ford explorer, I had gone to Ford after they told me my radiator was on back order, and they still could not find the problem as to why it stalled. I even told them the throttle needed to be fixed. Their comment was we don't fix something that isn't broken.

So I left my explorer there, and came back one week later and it still wasn't fixed this time I came in with a yellow folder, papers 5 inches thick. I had researched the explorer and printed off this information from this website and others. I also had in there information regarding how many times I have asked them to please fix something and they didn't. I gave them 2 options. 1) They can keep the explorer and I will go ahead and call my attorney (gave them a business card) and sue them for the lemon law. or 2) THEY keep the explorer, and buy it back and replace it with a better vehicle, better value and better ratings.

I am proud to announce, Ford picked number 2. They took the explorer and replaced it with a 2007 Ford Edge, much better on gas mileage, smooth ride and so far only one complaint and they fixed it in a matter of no time.

Best of luck to you all!

- , Sikeston, MO, USA

problem #13

Feb 022009

Explorer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

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

I keep getting differ info. first said that the air filter needed to be replaced (done), then thought that the air intake needed to be cleaned (done)... I've paid for 2 diagnosis, and no one can tell me the problem but I'm paying for things that aren't covered under the warranty. I've been checking the website and apparently I'm not the only one have the same issues with the car. No it shakes (engine) really bad and stalls a lot. I'm very upset, they don't want to do a trade/ exchange, they don't want to give me my money back for the misdiagnosis either. I don't know what else to do... PLEASE HELP

- , Ellenwood, GA, USA

problem #12

May 122006

Explorer Limited

  • Automatic transmission
  • 17,000 miles

Car turned off while going around a curve in my neighborhood. I put it in neutral and restarted it. I did not have any problems for several months

- , Matthews, NC, USA

problem #11

Aug 042007

Explorer Limited

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles

The car has been turning off every few weeks when I come to a stop. I took it to the dealership and they charged me a hundred dollars to run a diagnostic, of course nothing wrong. This particular day I was driving my best friend and the bridal party to the church to get married when the car stalled out over and over again!

- , Matthews, NC, USA

problem #10

Sep 102008

Explorer Limited

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

Today is the final straw...I just stalled in the middle of a major intersection and was almost killed! I have been told that this is possibly and air flow problem and to replace the mass air flow sensor or maybe the GRC valve or maybe its the throttle. Has anyone fixed this problem yet?

- , Matthews, NC, USA

problem #9

Nov 152007

Explorer

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,000 miles

We bought this in September of 2007. By November 2007, it was already in the garage. Garaged again in December 2007. Now its again garaged for the same thing. It doesn't want to start. If by chance it does start, it doesn't want to idol. When you pull out, it jerks and makes terrible sounds, you honestly think the motor or transmission, is going to jump through the hood. When they called me in December, to pick my vehicle up, I got there before closing. I made it three miles, down the four lane, and it stalled out, and wouldn't start back. I had my child with me, and it was 35 degrees outside. I am very dissatisfied with this vehicle. I pay to much money a month to have this vehicle and not be able to use it. Im scared to drive it with my children, and we cant drive it to work. Because we are afraid of it. They changed some censors, and the ignition switch. That isn't the problem. I believe this vehicle is a lemon, I hate it, im afraid to drive it, and ill never buy another one.

- , Avondale, WV, USA

problem #8

May 022008

Explorer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles

I bought my explorer in March of 2007........I have been an value customer for over 13 years at our dealership here in town. Will I recommend it or the dealership....no!! The spitting, stalling and putting started 3 months after I bought the vehicle, they tested it and told me nothing was wrong with mine...Again in December (remind you it has been doing this off and on during this whole time) once again they say-nothing wrong..........so again this month..........same thing...........they don't see anything, feel anything and they didn't have anything in the computer telling them it happen.

I have brought it to our dealership attention about this website and about them selling me a lemon.However they were shocked when I asked them to check the throttle body. They said they don't fix anything that is broke........

I am fed up..............

- , Sikeston, MO, USA

problem #7

Dec 052007

Explorer Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 17,000 miles

I started having a stalling problem while driving my car in December. I came to a traffic light and my car stalled on a very busy road. When I restarted the car, it continued to do the same thing at several different stop lights or whenever I would slow down. I thought I needed an oil change and drove it to the closest garage. They checked out the truck and said it was fine. I then called my local Ford dealer and brought them the truck to look at. They said they would reset my computer and that should fix the problem. About a month and a half later, my husband drove my car and witnessed the same problem in our development slowing down at a stop sign. We didn't bring the car in right away and another month and a half later, I had the same problem again, except this time I had my twin sons in the car with me and I had slowed down on a major road to make a turn across the highway. As I was turning into the parking lot my explorer stalled half way across the road, the steering wheel froze up and I couldn't complete the turn, causing me to go up a curb and nearly miss a telephone poll as well as the on coming traffic that had to go around me. It was a really close call that scared me and my 3 year old boys. We were very lucky not to have been hit by the other cars or run into the telephone poll. I immediately brought it back to the dealership service dept. and they of course could not diagnose the problem, (nor would they give me a loaner car, very unprofessional!!!) They drove it and of course it did not happen for them. I explained that it rarely happens, but all it takes is one time to have a serious accident that could kill someone. They now want to install a recorder as another complaint had mentioned. They expect me to drive around until this happens again, I do not feel safe in this vehicle especially with my children's life's at stake. We are looking into speaking directly with a Ford sales rep. to hopefully resolve this issue and either get another vehicle or have them release us from our lease agreement. Thank you to all the others who complained, my dealership service dept. said that they did not have a record of this happening to anyone else.

- , Hackettstown, NJ, USA

problem #6

Mar 102008

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 17,650 miles

This is a follow-up to my previous post. My 2006 Ford Explorer saga lives on. Here we go...I had the vehicle recorder installed by Ford and after about two weeks, the vehicle stalled yet again at a stop light. The recorder button was pushed twice within 20 seconds of the vehicle stall and immediately the vehicle was returned back to the service department for review. Get this, I now have a Ford Zone Representative working with me to help resolve this issue and he just called me and informed me that he had a Ford Fuel Service Engineer visit the dealership to review the recorder readings and realized that when the recorder was installed, it was installed incorrectly therefore, the readings could not be read. Oh my!!! As the zone representative began explaining this to me with embarrassment, he then proceeded to ask me for my approval to have Fuel Service Engineer drive my vehicle with the recorder correctly installed for a week or two to see if the vehicle would stall again. He then proceeded to tell me that he authorized the dealership to install a new throttle body per my request. After much research and thanks to a young lady responding to her post here in this forum, I was found out that a Throttle Body issue is becoming more frequent in the Explorer. I spoke with the Ford Service Department and Throttle Body issues are VERY common in the F350s but to date, are very rare except in a few cases with the 2006-2008 Explorer. So to update, I will pick up the vehicle tomorrow with the vehicle recorder installed properly and will keep it installed for 1 month. I only hope the issue is resolved but only time will tell. I told the zone rep that if it stalls again, I will call him, drive it back to the service department, and they can keep it being it would be the fourth time in 3 months that they serviced this piece of junk for the same reason. California lemon law is 3 times therefore, I will request Ford trade in my model and provide me with a newer or equivalent model that does not stall. More to follow.

- , San Jacinto, CA, USA

problem #5

Feb 222008

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,550 miles

Oh, where do I start. I guess with at least I know now that I am not the only one with the frustrating issue. Purchase the 2006 Explorer in Oct 07 and had it in the dealership in November for 3 days, in December for 2 days, and now in January 08 for three days with absolutely no resolution. I have been working with the service manager at Goesch Ford and Ford Consumer Affairs (1-800-392-3673) and get this, Ford is going to install a vehicle recorder box that when the vehicle stalls, we are supposed to press a button and at that time, the recorder will record vehicle data 30 seconds before to 30 seconds after the stall. All this just because the system indicate NO negative PCM codes even though it stalls out periodically. Needless to say, I am researching the Lemon Law requirements (3 returns to the dealer with the same unresolvable issue constitutes a valid lemon law claim) and plan to talk with a lemon law attorney shortly as well. Ford seems to want to help but being it is my wife's car and she often travels with my 3 children, the car is definitely on its way out of my family. I will keep you all posted with the details of the next visit to the dealership..

- , San Jacinto, CA, USA

problem #4

Dec 072007

Explorer XLS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 27,694 miles

The SUV stalled 5 times within 8 days. The first time I thought it was something I did. 7 days later #2 & 3, I got mad because it happened in a turn. #4 & 5 happened waiting in line at the Ford Dealership Service line. The fix took no time.

- , Shreveport, LA, USA

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