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.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
34,884 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 Sport Trac seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2004 Ford Explorer Sport Trac Owner Comments

problem #4

Apr 122009

Explorer Sport Trac

  • 65,000 miles


On April 12, 2008 my boyfriend and I spent the morning at his sisters house for easter. We drove the truck to her house that morning and even made a stop at the grocery store on the way with no issues. That evening around 6 we had returned home for a while and decided to go out again. The truck was parked in the driveway with the motor running. My boyfriend was sitting in the drivers seat and I was standing in the passenger side doorway about to get into the vehicle. We were talking and he shut the driver side door, normally. When he did so the side airbags on both sides of the truck deployed. He was hit in the face and has since had a bad earache and headache. I was hit in my left arm causing brush burns, swollen and tenderness and bruising. We were unsure of how to get the airbags to shrink back so in an angry move my boyfriend simply cut them down so we could still use the vehicle. I contacted a Ford dealership near my house and was told that they could look at the vehicle but I had no more warranty available. I then contacted Ford Motor Company and was told that my complaint was being sent to a review board and I would hear from them in writing in 14 business days! at this point nothing has been done to correct the failure and I am very frustrated with the lack of help I am getting.

- River Ridge, LA, USA

problem #3

Apr 302006

Explorer Sport Trac 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,535 miles
Approximately one year ago, while my vehicle was parked, and running outside of my home, I shut the driver side door, and the side impact airbags deployed. The driver side door was shut with no more force than normal, however I was later told by the Ford service dept. That even a slam should not have caused this deployment. I opted to drive the vehicle, and did not go to Ford, however now realized I should have, as the vehicle was then in it's last miles of my warranty. I am now concerned that the multiple problems I have had with my driver side and passenger side seatbelts may be associated or have caused the default of my side airbags, as the driver seat belt was replaced approximately 3 times just prior to the airbags deploying. I am very dissatisfied by the response Ford provided, however even if I had placed a complaint during the warranty period, according to other filed complaints regarding the same issue which I read, it may still have not been covered by Ford. I am just now contemplating either trading the vehicle in, or replacing the airbag equipment required to meet safety regulations, as up to this point the vehicle has been operational without replacement, after all, with my malfunction and others noted on the site, and by the Ford service dept, I feel they are more a liability than a protective element. It is a disturbing day, when Ford does not stand behind it's safety commitment, especially when there was no cause, prior accident, or impact to have accounted for this sudden deployment.

- Woodbridge, VA, USA

problem #2

May 292006

Explorer Sport Trac 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles
The side air bags (both) deployed for no apparent reason while I was driving down the road at approximately 30 mph. My vehicle is a 2004 Ford Explorer Sport Trac. (4 door pickup). The vehicle was returned to a Ford dealer for repair and initially they said it would be a warranty repair but called back a week later indicating that Ford would not warrant the repairs and the cost to me would be $2300 to $2500. I am now concerned that this could reoccur in the future and perhaps with my grand children or dog in the vehicle with a hand or head out of the window. The explosive force of the deployment has me concerned about ever driving the vehicle again not to mention the unwarranted expense and the destructive nature of the deployment. It destroyed the interior of the vehicle including my driver side seat belt (now non op and being replaced at my expense) headliner, a pillar moldings, C pillar molding etc. I have to wonder if this is a common problem with this vehicle or unique to mine. I'm contemplating a trade in for a Toyota. Any insight you can offer would be appreciated.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #1

Aug 072004

Explorer Sport Trac

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
We had just left a gas station and were on our way to dinner when our side-curtain airbags deployed for no reason. We did not hit any potholes or large bumps, and there was no collision to cause the deployment. My husband, the driver, managed not to swerve and hit anyone or anything before pulling off the road into a parking lot. We experienced headaches, neck muscle soreness and tinnitus immediately after and for the following day. Ford roadside assistance called a tow truck for us, and took it to the dealership from where we purchased it. We are waiting to hear the cause of this inadvertent deployment.

- Laplace, LA, USA

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