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.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
119,593 miles
Total Complaints:
98 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace the rear axle (38 reports)
  2. not sure (32 reports)
  3. replace with a used rear axle (11 reports)
  4. replace rear axle (9 reports)
  5. car totaled in accident from failure (2 reports)
  6. check for recall (2 reports)
2000 Ford Windstar drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2000 Ford Windstar Owner Comments (Page 2 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #78

Aug 162010

Windstar SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles


As I read all the horror stories of similar problems others have had out there with the Windstar I am surprised that I didn't hear about it already. I can't believe someone hasn't been injured or killed as a result of this defect with the Windstar's rear axle. My wife was driving the vehicle yesterday when the steering went out and she went into oncoming traffic. The rear axle broke and miraculously she was able to get back on the right side of the road and on the berm without causing an accident. My mechanics have said they never seen anything like this. Coincidentally, my mechanic received an automotive magazine in the mail today and it talks about this problem with the Ford Windstar and that there is a class action lawsuit that is being started in regards to this problem. Anyone else have any info. I would love to know more. I will be out of pocket at least $700.00 but that is nothing compared to what could have happened to my wife and others on the road last night. I hope Ford decides to do the right thing and fix this problem before someone gets hurt or killed.

Update from Aug 24, 2010: Just got the van back and it cost $1310.00

- , Phila., PA, USA

problem #77

Aug 052010

Windstar LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 117,000 miles

Had no idea that the rear axle had any problem. Nothing was even noticed by my mechanic for state inspection. Looked like it was sawed in two, from what i could see. Luckily I was not on a major highway, but on a two lane road where I could pull off in a parking lot. Had to miss work and wait for the tow truck Now I have NO car and am dependent on others to get me to work. My mechanic is trying to locate a used axle. This is not a problem I have ever heard about in all 40 years of driving!! i am not happy, up until now I was very pleased with my Windstar.

Update from Aug 30, 2010: Just found out that Ford is recalling the rear axles on Ford Windstars!! Got the info from Now to get Ford to reimburse me.

- , Hatboro, PA, USA

problem #76

Aug 142010

Windstar LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

click to see larger images

rear axle failure

Found this website while investigating the Windstar issue. I plan to call the NHTSA - (1-888-327-4236) and COMPLAIN ABOUT THIS PROBLEM, as Paul suggested in another post. I have not heard yet what the cost for replacement will be. I'll compare the cost to repair against replacing the vehicle. I must say that my wife was lucky it happened just as she arrived at her destination and not in transit.

- , Weymouth, MA, USA

problem #75

Jul 312010

Windstar 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,325 miles


I would say more but all the posts say it. I drove tow truck for 10 years and even the tow operator on call had never had one snap like that.....Ford won't fix it though.

Update from Aug 12, 2010: Fixed it myself. Bought a rear end from a scrap yard for $200. Changed it in 16 hrs with nothing more than the jack that came with the van and hand tools......was a freaking nightmare but when ur broke you do what u gotta do.

- , Cohoes, NY, USA

problem #74

Jul 152008

Windstar LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles

I have a 2000 windstar that @ 67,000 my rear axel beam cracked I have 2 small children and bought this van thinking it was a 5 * but this was as far from the truth .I called to see if this was common and I was told no only had 1 other report. So I Bitched but still had to fix it on my own NOW @ 80,000 It has a crack on the other end I can't see how FORD thinks this not a problem. I only happend to find this web sight and was able to see that I am NOT the only one with this problem I just thank god no one has been killed (that's when ford will address this issue )

- , Waltham, MA, USA

problem #73

Jul 102010

Windstar LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,000 miles

of all the things to cheap out on. only a rear axle. it only holds up the car, no big deal. i was traveling at 70 m.p.h. on I495 in massachusets when my rear axle snapped. i was in the far left lane of a very congested highway. suddenly, i heard a loud crack and my car started fishtailing back and forth. i had my wife and my 3 kids in the car. the car began filling with smoke and the children were coughing and choking. i managed to get the car across all 3 travel lanes and there was no brake down lane, i had to go 200 more yards before i could still pull of the road. my parents came and picked up my kids and i waited for a tow truck. some woman who was texting came into the breakdown lane and almost hit me.

this makes me sick. sick that money is more important to ford and stockholders. well, ford, my kids almost died today because you built my car CHEAP. scum. ill never put my family in a ford again. may god have mercy on your money grubbing corporate souls.

- , Wilmington, MA, USA

problem #72

Jul 052010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles


click to see larger images

rear axle failure rear axle failure rear axle failure

rear end snapped while going into revearse. has anyone thought of having support welded to take the stress off? how about having steel welded under the rail where the void is so that its one solid piece?

- , Erie, PA, USA

problem #71

Jun 212010

Windstar SE 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 136,000 miles

I am VERY upset with Ford for not having a recall on the rear axle problem!!!! What is it gonna take..... horrible death related accidents like Toyota for them to do something about this??!!! I have always been a proud Ford owner but now am not!

I recently took a trip to Ohio with my family and when I returned home realized that there was a noise in my rear end and when my husband (who is mechanically inclined) check it out found the axle to be cracked and the sagging! Needless to say I was sick to my stomach when I thought about us just returning from Ohio which we traveled on the interstate highway and the speed limits were 65 and 70mph! I truly believe God was watching over us on this trip and praise him for our save return and not being in a horrible accident!

We priced a new axle and it was close to $500.00 a used one was nearly $400.00 and add in the 2 new tires and an alignment and if my husband was not able to fix this himself the labor fee, so I am estamitaing well over $1000.00 to fix this problem that should have a recall on it!!!!! I did call the customer relations at Ford and baiscally got no where but will say the person I spoke with was not rude and apologized but that apology does not pay for my repair! Wake up FORD and recall this problem!!!! Windstar owners beware and check your axles!

- , Bentleyville, PA, USA

problem #70

Jul 082010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 148,000 miles

I am feeling vey lucky. We have loved our 2000 Ford Winstar as it has been a reliable vehicle with no major problems until now. We were driving on the turnpike going 65 mph with our entire family including 3 children. We heard a popping/cracking noise and the car started fishtailing. Somehow, we managed to get off the road without hitting anything. That is truly an amazing feat due to the speed we were going, but luckily there was no traffic around us at the time. If there had been, we would have taken them out for sure. I have no idea how my husband maintained enough control not the hit the cement median. We were heading right for it! I expected that we blew a tire due to the noise nad experience losing control of the vehicle, but I was shocked to see the rear axle cracked in half and the rear tires buckled under the vehicle. Thank God we weren't hurt. I didn't know this problem as this common or to be looking for it. I contacted the CPSC at 888-327-4236 and SO SHOULD YOU IF THIS HAPPENS TO YOU!! Everyone needs to call in order to get this on their radar for a recall.

- , Norristown, PA, USA

problem #69

Apr 222010

Windstar LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,000 miles

I cant believe this happen, On April 22, 2010 I was driving down a street and the rear axle just broke in two, I pulled over to the side of the street and got out and looked at the tires I though I had a flat tire but the tires were ok except they were tilted in at the top of the wheel, I looked under the car and saw that the rear axle had broken in two. Before this happen I was driving on 83 with my grand child in the car,( I call it the big highway) going about 60, if this would of broke while I was on that road I hate to think what would of happen to my grand child and me. I had to have my van towed $75. to start, and now I am trying to get a idea of what it will cost to fix it, close to $275. for labor alone they told me, and don't know how much the axle will cost. I was surprised to read all the complaints about this same problem, . This is a serious safety issue and for what I am reading no one is making any headway on getting this resolved . Why doesn't the Ford Co. do something about this, when are they going to acknowledge this problem. I am checking into another way to approach this issue that may work with getting them to listen, its called the NEWS MEDIA. Maybe it is time to let them know about this danger with Ford Windstars and maybe save a live. Thank you all for listing to my concern.

- , Red Lion, PA, USA

problem #68

Jun 242010

Windstar SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles


click to see larger images

rear axle failure


- , Columbus, OH, USA

problem #67

Jun 182010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

I had the transmission replace twice and now this problem with the rear axle. I always want to support USA economy, but there vehicles have big problems!

- , Crystal Lake, IL, USA

problem #66

Jun 042010

Windstar SEL 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

I have a 2000 Ford Windstar SEL and my wife was driving to work when she noticed the rear of the van was fishtailing. I was at work so when I got home I looked at the van and noticed the wheels were slanted in. I looked under the van and noticed that the rear axle bar was broken in two. After doing some online research I found out that there were other people with the some problem as me. Why isn't Ford doing anything to fix it??? How much does it cost to fix??? What is the Ford part number for this bar???

- , Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #65

Jun 052010

Windstar LX 3.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 105,000 miles

Rear axle snaped in half. Luckily I-95 was closed in Phila and we took a slow alternate route. Broke and both back wheels caved inward. 103,000 miles. Have see hundreds of the same complaint once car gets near 100,000 miles. Ford should own up.

- , Bensalem, PA, USA

problem #64

May 182010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

noticed the rear wheel of my wifes windstar tilting inward as she was backing out the driveway to go to work. Looked underneath and saw that the rear axle was split in half about a foot away from the drivers side wheel. I see no signs of rust or corrosion, just fractured steel. I have a 1991 f-150 that is rusty as hell and carries extremely heavy loads a every day with no problems, but a minivan that carries nothing heavier than a five and six year has an axle break in half? What the f**k!!!

- , Columbus, OH, USA

problem #63

Apr 302010

Windstar SEL V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,000 miles

On April 30, 2010 was driving in my 2000 Ford Windstar SEL on Interstate 80 in IL at 55 miles per hour approaching I-Pass toll booth when I heard loud clunk in rear, metal scraping and then smoke trailing from behind car. I figured it was exhaust system problem and it was not a good place to stop so slowed up and continued a short distance when I heard another loud clunk (rear axle had snapped in two), then loud noise like gun shot (was tire blowing), lost control of car, spun out of control in middle of traffic and did 180, then slamming into concrete barrier at 50 mph, rear first, then skidded along barrier for 200 ft. All cars behind me avoided collision. Concrete barrier stopped me from spinning into traffic of cash lanes. Luckily I was not in left lane becasue I would have rolled down steep ravine. Others expressed fears of rear axle breaking at high speed and getting killed. I was almost there. Car totaled by ins. co. $9000 to repair. Ins Co filing claim with Ford and hiring engineer hopefully. Class action suit is needed. Fortunately I only had severe whiplash and not killed. Rear axle snapped about 18 inches from rear driver wheel like others reported.

- , Lansing, IL, USA

problem #62

Aug 012009

Windstar Limited 3.1L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

This is the second time that my rear axle or sway bar have broken on me. Both times I was driving in the city, Oh my God what would have happened if I was on the highway going 60mph. Ford needs to recall these vehicles before they end up like Toyota.

- , Canton, OH, USA

problem #61

May 192010

(reported on)

Windstar SLE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

Rear axle snapped while driving home in the middle of the day. No warning.

- , Bristol, VA, USA

problem #60

Apr 302010

Windstar SEL V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,846 miles

I was in NEUTRAL rolling down my driveway ( as I always do ) when the rear axle snapped in my 2000 FORD Windstar SEL. I thought I had hit something - only to find the rear axle snapped - near the centre, slightly to the left side. This is suppose to be a 5 star vehicle !!!!!!!! I was quite content with it till now. I no longer feel safe with my family in it; therefore, I am now selling it. I called my FORD dealership to inform them of this problem and they deemed they never heard of it.

I am very fortunate to have this happen when it did. I could have been on the highway or stranded somewhere far from home. Time to get rid of my FORD VAN !!!!

- , Windsor, Ontario, Canada

problem #59

Apr 292010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

Just had my power steering leak fixed. Three brand new tires. ABS light was on but feeling good about the car overall. Driving down the street when THUNK and the car just stopped!! I was on my way to the doctors in Boston. 40 miles away and I would have been doing 65 on the Southeast Expressway. THANK THE DEAR LORD it happened down the street. Have had my 2000 Windstar for two years. I hope this does not cost an arm and a leg! My son just got his license last month. I can't even begin to think if he had it out driving what might have happened. Frightning!!!!!

- , Scituate, MA, USA

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