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fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
59,936 miles
Total Complaints:
18 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. the differential was rebuilt (10 reports)
  2. not sure (6 reports)
  3. being rebulit (2 reports)
2004 Ford F-150 drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2004 Ford F-150 Owner Comments

problem #18

Sep 102012

F-150 Lariat 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles


Have been trying to discover actual problem. Have had an annoying noise for quite awhile and have had the truck looked at several times. Always been told that a little noise is not uncommon. At approximately 68,000 miles I put new brakes and hubs on the truck and had everything checked (drivetrain). No problems were found. Noise seemed to get worse at time went on. Sounded like a dry bearing.... I have the oil changed (full service) at approximately every 3,000 mile since the truck was new, checking all fluid levels and filters etc. Was told once that the transfer case had a leak (drip of oil) but no problems were found. Turning a corner a couple of weeks ago....the noise got much worse....Took the truck to a dealership and requested that they check things out. Called received the next day...confirmed that the rear differential was the problem. Gears and bearings were all galled.....basically it was toast. Choices....rebuild, used, reconditioned from Ford. Rebuild...expensive, used...no way of knowing condition of unit, reconditioned....at least warrented. I chose reconditioned....$2900.00 +cents. Started looking for information about Ford rear differential problems and found that I'm not the only one having problems....always seems strange that you never hear of these non problems from a dealership. That irritates me....I've spent half of my driving miles listening to this noise, that wasn't necessary. I've driven lots of miles in all makes of vehicles....all have had a problems occasionally....their mechanical. Things break....but and most of the time, you find out later that it is a known problem, that "they" hope you will not have it. Well....I love my truck....I have owned several and I take care of them. Even though this time is an expensive repair, which I will take care of. I will notify Ford of the problem encountered and hopefully some of the cost for repairs will be returned. One more truck will follow this one before long....and yes it will probably be another Ford F-series. I love my trucks.

- , ElDorado, Kansas, USA

problem #17

Feb 082012

F-150 STX 4.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles

F1-50 4X4 STX. About every 4to6 weeks my f 150 would start vibrating horribly , Had to pull over to the side of the road and come to a complete stop sometimes that would work or had to put it in reverse and back up about 10 feet most of the time that work. This has been going on far a long time, After 6200 miles the rear end went out ford motor company told me the warranty is out of date. And it would cost about 1867.00 bucks to replace the rear end. And this truck is supposed to be ford tough; ford need to step up and replace the differentials at no cost, If not this is the last Ford i will buy.

- , Lacey, Washington, USA

problem #16

Sep 212010

F-150 XLT Super Cab 5.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

This issue was brought to the dealer's attention right after purchase and at least three other times that the rear had issues and they always had some cockamamie resolution.

Now extended warranty is expired, on time, not miles and it needs repair. Thinking twice before going "FORD TUFF" Trouble Unforseen Fords Future.

- , Dickson City, PA, USA

problem #15

Sep 172010

F-150 XL 4.6L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,000 miles


To initiate a recall on 2004 Ford F-150 trucks, with vibration from differential (I believe), log your complaint officially on the government site here:


Last year, with only 38,000 miles on my truck, it started vibrating horribly at 50 mph on the highway. Nothing I did would cause the vibration to cease. I slowed down, tapped the brakes, through the vehicle into neutral while coasting, nothing worked. It then began to ease up and stop as I slowed down to almost a crawl. It has happened several times over the past year, and again today.

What others describe is perfect description - like driving over a washboard road.

Today, September 17, 2010 with 43,000 miles on my truck, it happened again. Driving along at about 55 mph and the whole truck begins to vibrate horribly.

I stated searching Google and found dozens of other sites listing the same complain on 2004 F-150's, and I went to the govt. site to try and initiate a recall. We have to log our complaints officially if we want Ford to pay for this. Go do it!

- , Saint Louis, MO, USA

problem #14

May 152008

F-150 Lariat 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,000 miles

Bought my 04 F150 4X4 in Feb @ 68K miles. In May with approximately 70K, started feeling vibrations when turning from a stopped position. The local mech said that the rear clutches were locked up? He also said that the truck would probably run for another 100K miles, but that it would annoying. Either way, it was going to require a rear end rebuild. How would the process start for Ford to do a recall, or extend a fix of this problem?? Obviously it's a design flaw of the rear differential.

- , Texas City, TX, USA

problem #13

Apr 012008

F-150 Heritige 4.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

bought the truck early april from my boss with 69k miles and about a month later started hearing a grinding noise and i would feel a slight vibration in gas pedal only happen from a stop and especially turning from a stop now it has 73k and it is really bad feels like sometimes its gonna lock up sometimes on me don't have money to fix it at the moment just got laid off for the winter read all the reports on this and it seems like its gonna be the rear diff YAY :( DAMN FORDS

- , Sheboygan, Wisconsin, USA

problem #12

Mar 042008

F-150 Supercrew 2wd 5.4L Xlt

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,250 miles


at 26250 miles my f150 xlt supercrew 2wd needed the ring and pinion and complete drivshaft replaced.I took the truck in for whine in differential previously before warranty expired.Ford dealer in Riverside CA said mechanic could not hear whine at freeway speed.Told CJ that whine appears at 75 to 78 mph only. CJ assured me that complaint was in their system if problem gets worse.Four months after warranty expired truck had annoying clunk upon takeoffTook to same dealership and talked to CJ again.He said Ford would not honor fixing and complaint was not logged in their system.After numerous calls to Ford corporate they agreed to assist me with problem since i was a loyal Ford customer with 2 other Fords.I had to pay $850. for more poor quality.If you suspect something is wrong with your Ford and your near end of warranty do not accept their promises...leave it their or ride with the technician to get fixed the fist time. 21k miles front rotors worn. 26250 miles differential rebuilt with new ring and pinion.also entire driveshaft replaced. 31333 miles rear door window motor and cables fall apart.This is a family transportation truck only. No commercial use or offroad...NEVER another Ford....

- , Riverside, CA, USA

problem #11

Aug 012008

F-150 Lariat 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

Noticed that the truck stuttered and shook when starting from a complete stop. Thought it might be electrical and one shop actually thought is was the plugs. After several shops went through troubleshooting they found that the rear had to be rebuilt and possibly replaced if they found it ground up too badly (working on it now). Last truck I had was a 2002 F250 and the rear axle wheel bearings went out (completely shot) at 67,000 miles.. This is the last Ford I will own. Ford needs to step up to the plate since its obvious others have had the same problem.

- , Port Tobacco, Maryland, USA

problem #10

Nov 102008

F-150 XLT 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

After replacing all 8 spark plugs (3 which broke off in the head and earlier then required) , both cats (1200), and all differential seals front and back, I thought I was good. Then every time I turned left or right I would get a bad vibration, almost like I was hitting several holes. Turned out the rear dif is chewed to hell. I can't believe that ford would put out a product that fails on so many levels. Screw ford to the floor if you can.

- , Ontario, Ontario, Canada

problem #9

May 022008

F-150 FX4 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

After reading this forum, it sounds like I need to have the differential rebuilt @ 50K. For the past four months I have ignored the shuttering in the drive train when turning and accelerating. The rear end feels like it�s spinning on gravel when starting from a stop. Ford knows there is a problem and they won�t have a recall. Sounds like another future class action lawsuit.

- , Jamesville, NY, USA

problem #8

Apr 032008

F-150 Supercrew Lariat4x4 5.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles


I had just bought this vehicle used when the differential starting grinding and shaking while turning and accelerating. The local Ford dealership estimated $1200-$1400. I took it to a local powertrain service and got it repaired for $600. Apparently this is a chronic problem with this model and I would highly recommend purchasing a Chevy.

- , Mobile, AL, USA

problem #7

Jan 042007

F-150 Supercrew 5.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

Rear differential failed. Heard grinding sound and felt grinding sound under rear passenger seats. Took to Ford dealer where truck was purchased and they said one rear rack and pinion bearing went bad and they rebuilt it. Ford offered up 50% of the cost because I had to complain about it multiple times. Trucks are usually getting to the "broken in" stages around 60k miles seems to me that Fords are broken in and beyond at end of standard warranty 36K miles.

- , Dillsburg, PA, USA

problem #6

Jun 152005

F-150 XLT 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles

OK, this is f150 # 2. The rear diff. started shaking when starting from a stop. It felt like the tires were spinning on loose gravel. This is the same problem we had with f150 # 1! Dealer fixed it under warranty.

- , Port Saint Lucie, FL, USA

problem #5

Jun 152005

F-150 XLT 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,000 miles

Problem #3 with this truck. Replaced front brakes twice. The rear end feels like its spinning on gravel when starting from a stop. Dealer fixed the rear dif. under warranty.

- , Port Saint Lucie, FL, USA

problem #4

Dec 192007

F-150 Lariat 5.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

For the past five months I have ignored the shuttering in the drive train when turning and accelerating. I recently talked with another person who owns a 2004 F-150 and his differential failed last summer at 38,000 miles. I have not had the truck fixed, but now understand this is a widespread issue with Ford F-150s from the 2004 model year. I hope Ford addresses this problem, else I hope for a class action law suit to help cover the costs of repair. My truck is mostly (99.9%) a paved road vehicle and has not been abused. This is not ford tuff. I expect better from a KIA. If not properly addressed I will move to Toyota. I have owned three F-150s (2000, 2001 and 2004). Until now I was very happy.

- , Madison, WI, USA

problem #3

Feb 012008

F-150 XL 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

I thought this was a tranny problem. Symptom was a hard shift at low speeds. If your Truck is doing this, have the rear diff checked!!!

- , Hermitage, TN, USA

problem #2

Oct 062007

F-150 FX4 5.4L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,600 miles

Had to have the differential replaced right after the truck came off warranty. There was even a TSB issued on 11/28/05 in reference to the faulty differential. Of course, Ford only offered to pay for the parts, so it still ended up costing me $850. If Ford knows there is a problem why don't they recall the damn thing. Of course, my letter for full reimbursement was rejected. Hello Toyota, anyone wanna buy a Ford?

- , Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #1

Aug 142007

(reported on)

F-150 XLT 5.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

Ford is a great Toyota spokesperson. My 1989 F150 differential failed at 100K miles. My 1995 F150 differential failed at 100K and again at 200K miles. Now my 2004 F150 differential has failed at 100K miles. Maybe I'm a slow learner.

- , Berrien Center, MI, USA

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