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definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
25,596 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 F-150 drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2004 Ford F-150 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #22

Jul 142011


  • 70,000 miles


Started to notice shaking when turning to right, then left and as soon as I started to move forward. This is the third time I have had this failure and each time the dealer has replaced the rear end cutches and all bearings in the rear end housing. The last time it totaled over $900 and 17,000 miles after it is happening again. This is apparanty a common problem since the dealers stock al required parts and are not unaware of this faiure. I have had this same faiure happen 3 times in 70,000 miles and the more people I talk to the more I find that most have had at least 1 faiure. Ford needs to step up and correct a problem that exists yet today in 2011 models.

- Geneva, MN, USA

problem #21

Mar 202011

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • 36,750 miles
Original owner of truck, 37,000 miles. Terrible vibration/shudder when turning. Now it also does this driving down the road at over 45 mph. Feels like it is going to freeze up. Was told it is issues with the differential. This is wrong for a vehicle with low miles. Please investigate. I've read lots of other people have had the same issue with this model.

- Newbury, OH, USA

problem #20

Jul 122010


  • 34,351 miles
A humming noise began to emanate from the rear differential. I took it into my garage to have it looked into. I was told that the gears had not been aligned properly and had worn out with just over 34000 miles on the truck.. I've been told by Ford mechanics that this is a recurring problem with the Ford F-150 truck and can occur with as little as 5000 miles on the vehicle. Ford says that it isn't a problem until they've been told by your NHTSA says so and issue a recall. Why" the problem is known to exist by Ford but if your out of warranty then it's the owners problem so go fix it yourself. Is the NHTSA aware of this problem? are you willing to step up and order Ford to make the necessary repairs" it's a problem of their own making and they push it off to the unsuspecting buyer.

- Oakdale, MN, USA

problem #19

May 162010


  • 146,000 miles


2004 F-150, moderate to severe vibration appearing to come from the drive train or drive line. Vibration appears in the 55 - 60 mph and can get so bad that I was forced to pull over to check vehicle for damage. Problem first surfaced after towing a 3500 lbs trailer for about 60 miles. No problem previously. F150 rated for 5000 lbs. Problem occurs intermittently but comes on suddenly and must pull over for fear of losing control of vehicle. Attempted typical vibration related repairs. Tires completely rotated and rebalanced. Transmission flushed and fluid changed. Differential fluid changed. Transfer case fluid changed. Engine electronically checked for operational issues or "codes". none. When vibration begins, put F150 into neutral to check for possible engine mount problems. Neutral had no effect on easing the severe vibration. Attempted simply easing off gas - no effect. Vibration remained severe. Only solution is to come to a complete stop and then restart. Vibration stops but only for a period of time then comes back just as severe. Repairs typically associated with vibration at speed have had no effect. Danger is in potential loss of control and having to stop on hi-speed interstate highways with the associated danger of collision from passing vehicles.

- Plainville, MA, USA

problem #18

Dec 212009

F-150 8-cyl

  • 35,000 miles
My 2004 Ford F 150 fx 4 regular cab flareside pickup which currently has 36,000 miles has a massive vibration / shuddering while under acceleration past forty miles per hour ; I have already taken the vehicle to the dealer where they told me that it was an emergency brake problem after getting fixed the problem occurred less than a week later ; it is going back into the dealer again to get rediagnosed and cost even more money please make Ford Motor Company accountable for this issue !!!

- Milton, MA, USA

problem #17

Feb 132009

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • 37,000 miles
One year ago my 4 wheel drive stopped working. My F-150 was 47 months old and purchased to go in snow and off road. The 4 wheel drive broke and the limited slip rear axle (also defective) only spins the right rear wheel. Now, if you get on wet grass you are stuck and need a tow. I took my F-150 to the Ford dealer and they did a $100 diagnostic and said the powertrain control module had failed. Ford dealer said this 4X4 module (integral part of the PCM) was not covered by the 8 year 80,000 mile powertrain control module warranty because the F-150 would still pass emissions testing (the other two thirds of the PCM still worked correctly). The cost estimate started at $1100 to replace the entire PCM, and the dealer was willing to negotiate on the repair price. The repair was not affordable for me at this time. The reason I purchased the truck was to go in the snow, but it is worse than any other vehicle in the snow now without the 4 wheel drive. It can't even get up the slight hill in my neighborhood right now with a few inches of snow, and just spins the right rear wheel with zero traction.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #16

Mar 232009


  • 84,564 miles


I started experiencing a growling and hissing noise coming from the rear of my 2004 Ford F150 XLT at approximately 84,000 miles. The noise was most prominent between 20 to 35 mph. The dealership inspected the vehicle and found the pinion, ring gear and four bearings to be in need of replacement. When I inquired what would cause these parts to fail I was told it was "due to no fault of my own". parts were replaced and I do have all of the replaced parts in my possession. I talked to the dealership and corresponded with Ford Motor Company customer service regarding this incident. Ford Motor Company was unwilling to assist in any way to either fully or partially reimburse me the $1300 repair bill due to the fact the 75,000 mile extended warranty had elapsed. This vehicle has never been used to tow anything and has never been abused. I have owned new vehicles and personally put 150,000+ miles on them without ever having any type of rear differential failure.

- Lincoln Park, MI, USA

problem #15

Sep 272008


  • 35,000 miles
I have a high whining noise in the rear end of my 2004 Ford F150. Independent repair place recommends total rear end replacement and so does dealer. There is a technical notice Ford put out in 2005 05-23-03 that covered 1997 to 2005 F150's with this problem. If not fixed it may cause the rear end to lock up. Contacted Ford and they said they would not cover. I have 55400 miles on the truck. If they knew about it in 2005, why not contact people to get it in for repair at their cost. I feel this is a very unsafe condition that could case a serious accident if not fixed.

- Paulding, OH, USA

problem #14

Jun 012005

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 3,500 miles
I purchased my vehicle new in June of 2004. Since I've had the truck when turning right, especially from a dead stop, I get a severe vibration from the drive train. I've had the truck in many times for this problem. It got so bad Ford replaced the drive shaft and seemed to help for a while. With only 17000 actual miles on the truck you would expect better quality for a sticker price of $ $42,000.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #13

May 142005

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100 miles
This truck has a serious problem in the drive train and the dealer is now refusing to even attempt to repair the problem any longer, claiming that it is a "characteristic of the truck." The problem can be described as a violent lurching of the whole truck accompanied by a loud, metallic "clunk" sound in the drive train. This occurs frequently during normal driving conditions but especially when accelerating up a hill, out of a turn, or up out of a dip in the road. The problem has existed in the truck since I purchased it new in May 2005. I've had the dealer attempt to repair the problem at 3,000, 6,000, 12,000, 18,000, and at 22,000. They've attempted various repairs, but nothing has corrected the problem. At one point they told me that the wrong size driveshaft was installed at the factory. They replaced it with a shorter one, but this did nothing to correct the problem. At first I thought I was just facing a problem that was difficult to solve, but after doing some research on the internet, I know now that this is absolutely a known problem and the manufacturer has instructed all dealerships to not even attempt repair. (the service manager actually showed me this in writing.)

- Lansdale, PA, USA

problem #12

Jan 012006

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 19,000 miles


2004 Ford F150 stx 4X4 4.6L engine, mileage: 19,800 miles: Intermittent violent drivetrain shake in rearend of truck at 40 to 65 mph. Problem first noticed on January 1, 2006. Problem feels like the truck has a flat tire, but I don't. my wife will no longer drive does not consider it safe. I will not let my child drive in truck. Dealer replaced driveshaft U-joint and leaking rear axle seal. As soon as I drove it off the lot, I noticed the exact same vibration. I returned it to the Ford dealer. They say they have no fix to this problem. When will the government investigate this issue?

- Warrenton, VA, USA

problem #11

Jun 142005

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,000 miles
1. no signs or events lead up to the drive-line on my Ford F-150 detaching from my vehicle. 2. no consequences or failures occured. 3. my vehicle is under warranty and nothing has been done for over 30 days. Description: On June 14, 2005 between 7:30-8:00 am, I was traveling to work on freeway 99 in fresno, California. I heard a 'bang' underneath my truck and my two rear tires locked-up. I proceeded to skid in the left hand lane, until I my truck rested on the shoulder. My truck did not display any signs before the incident.

- Fowler, CA, USA

problem #10

Aug 092004

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 7,500 miles
I purchased a new 2004 F-150 regular cab pickup in may of 04. It has had a serious vibration since new. At first I thought it was "teething" problems, getting broken in as it were. The dealer replaced two drive shafts, a dampener and a complete rear end down to the break rotors. None of this has helped with the vibration. I took it to a second dealer after the original refused to swap the truck out as a good faith gesture. Instead they wanted to "trade" the truck. I was offerd ten thousand plus less than I had purchased the truck for, less than five months earlier. The truck I wanted to "swap" for went up over six thousand more than the sticker price. The second dealer kept it more than two weeks and could not fix the issue. Their service manager told me that they have had several ttrucks with the same issue and had no luck with rectifying it. The original service manager told me it was a lemon, the second service manager told me it was a lemon. Neither would put it in writing, for fear of job loss. Ford has been no help with the issue, after repeated phone calls and emails, nothing has been done. This is my only "reliable" vehicle. It now has @17800.0 miles on it mainly highway. The vibration is getting worse with time and milage. I feel that any thing mechanical that vibrates will eventualy break. If I was looking to buy this vehicle used and felt the vibration I would walk away from it! it is that bad. Incident date approximate

- Memphis, TN, USA

problem #9

Jun 222005


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Vehicle has drive train vibration & rear end howl sense I test drove it Aug 2004. I pointed out the drive train vibration to my salesman and he said it " probably lost a wheel balance weight". a friend went into the same dealership ( lindquist Ford) and was told the same thing after they have acknowledged there are tsbs on this problem and after my truck was in & out of their shop numerous times. So far the tires and wheels have been forced balance, drive shaft replaced, cab mounts replaced, transmission tail shaft end play checked & rear end replaced. None have resolved the issues. The service manager told me Ford has identified the automatic transmission as the problem. We preceeded to arrange replacement and I insisted on a new not a rebuilt one. He got back with me and said the new Ford rep he was dealing with doesnt replace transmissions ! mine suddenly.......... you guessed it.. its within specifications !! the dealership management wont return my calls. Ford wont be shamed into fixing these problems unless/ until the media gets involved.

- Blue Grass, IA, USA

problem #8

Jun 102005

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 74 miles
2004 F150 XLT severe driveline vibration between 40-60 mph. This vibration is more pronounced when towing or hauling a heavy load. This vehicle has been to back to the dealer 9 times in the last eight months for this condition. Three sets of tires and two sets of wheels have been on this truck, road force tire balancing has been tried several times with no apparent correction for this condition in sight.

- Jackson, TN, USA

problem #7

Sep 052004

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,600 miles
Persistant driveline vibration, much more prevalent when towing. Under heavy load the vibration is so substantial that vehicle cannot be used.

- Welcome, MD, USA

problem #6

Nov 242004

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 14,670 miles
This will be the third time advising NHTSA and Ford concerning the same problems stated before.those are the the rear end shuddering upon acceleration, the whining noise from the rear end, the automatic transmission slippage, the whining noise from the power steering unit and last but not least the brakes constant squealing.I have gone to three different Ford service centers in three differeent states.NY, NJ, nc.of all the dealerships svc centers Mahwah Ford in NJ spent the most time investigating these problems.shultz Ford NY and cella Ford nc forget them (no help what so ever just a bunch of lame people with lame excuses)total visits 6 and nothing has been replaced even upon my insistance. I owned a 1998 F-150(best truck to date) I'm sorry that I traded it in for this 2004 bucket of bolts.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #5

Sep 142004

F-150 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2004 Ford F-150 has had a severe vibration in the steering wheel, gas and brake pedal, floorboard, seat, etc. At all speeds and worse after driving for 20-30 miles, that causes arms and legs to tingle and right leg to go numb resulting in having to use left foot to brake since week three of ownership. This vibration is also causing severe back pain. This truck also has had a clunking and squealing in the rear end. This issue is happening in the majority of 04 and 05 F-150's and Ford does not know how to fix it. Dsb has said that since there is a liability issue, they cannot make a ruling. So, I am stuck with a $30,000 vehicle that I cannot physically stand to drive!!! Ford needs to come up with a fix or recall them all!!! note: Have had damper installed, drive shaft indexed twice and clutches in the rear end replaced twice. The rear end is also clunking and whining.

- Buckhannon, WV, USA

problem #4

Oct 072004

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 161 miles
I recently purchased a 2004 Ford F150 supercab pickup truck, as I left the dealership and started home I noticed that the bed was shaking terribly between 55 and 62 mph. I called the dealership before I was three miles away and they told me to bring it back the next day, I did. They said that it was fixed, it wasn't. I left again (the day after I purchased) and immediately called the service department at jacky jones Ford in sweetwater, tn., and told them the problem was just as bad. The service clerk (jason) told me that there was a problem with this model truck and that Ford was in the process of fixing it. That was a month ago. Now I have learned that there are hundreds, maybe thousands of Ford F150's with this problem and they are not being fixed. I cannot get the dealer to reschedule a time to repair my truck.

- Cleveland, TN, USA

problem #3

Dec 062003

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 250 miles
Driveline/transmission slips and clunks when accelerating on 2004 F150 4X4. Requency: Intermittent rought into 2 different dealers and both said could not duplicate therefore could not fix. Consequences of failure: If happens while accelerating into merge traffic or intersection could cause loss of power to vehicle.

- Snellville, GA, USA

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