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:
101,851 miles
Total Complaints:
138 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace transmission (54 reports)
  2. Ford should recall it (37 reports)
  3. not sure (24 reports)
  4. completely rebuilt (15 reports)
  5. got rid of vehicle (8 reports)
2000 Ford Windstar transmission problems

transmission problem

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2000 Ford Windstar Owner Comments (Page 4 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #78

Dec 152000

Windstar LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 81,275 miles


I was driving my two young boys to school, and after I just turned left on a busy, steep street, my POS 2002 Ford Windstar shook, and made a loud noise. I screeched, "What was that"! I pushed down on the gas pedal, because cars come up fast on you on this road, and it hardly would go. I then shouted "What the hell"! , as my poor yound kids were starting to freak. I quickly put on my hazard lights, and got over as soon as it was clear. Luckily, I was just close enough to drop off the kids at a shortcut, back entrance. My kids were really scared, and I could have been hit from behind.

I had to get my car towed to my mechanic, and surprise, surprise, it was my transmission, and would cost around $2,700 to replace. My car only has 81,275 miles on it, and I have had MANY issues with it, (head gasket problems, and numerous check engine light, can't even remember what else, it's been so many). I have sank tons of money on this car, since I purchased it in 2002. So, I decided, hell with paying that much money to replace the transmission and have something else go wrong with it in a few months. So, I am now going to buy a HONDA, will never buy a Ford again! Oh, did I mention that my heater hasn't worked in almost two years, and I have to manually lock/unlock the driver's door. I didn't want to fix those two things because it was just going to be more money, and I just knew that it would not be worth it on this car. Boy, was I right! Ford, if your reading this, shame on you for making a car with so many problems. You are just shooting yourself in the foot, because less and less people will buy your cars.

- , San Diego, CA, USA

problem #77

Oct 172009

Windstar LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

My mom bought the car for me in 2003 and even though I knew FORD stood for Found On Road Dead or Fix Or Repair Daily, I was still happy to have transportation. In the first couple of months the engine light appeared several times which resulted in me sitting at the very undesirable dealership multiple times for multiple hours. One time the light reappeared prior to me leaving their lot. This should have been my eye opener right here. My ABS light has been on as long as I have had the car, I see it as an accessory kinda like the radio...LOL My headlights and brake lights have recently been playing a sick game called: Guess who's blowing out next??? for the past year, and now the transmission is failing. Everything seems to work just fine except for DRIVE! After reading other complaints and experiences on here I really don't think it is work fixing, however I do love Winnie we have been through a lot together so who knows where we go from here.

- , Washington, DC, USA

problem #76

Nov 212009

Windstar SEL 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 155,273 miles

this is the second time this piece of sh*t broke. Now its worse than the first time. a year and two months later BAM again Ford you suck, we should make them pay back all our tax money that stupid congress gave those f*%#ing idiots. Most of us live paycheck to paycheck and cannot afford a new car or repairs like this, especially with the holidays coming up. All without warning, now I got to figure out how to get to work and which bills to skip to pay for this AGAIN. THANKS FORD . I should take this van to ford executives, and drive it where the good lord split them. Oh yea, hey ford a*holes, My kids said thanks for a great christmas. RECALL THE DAMN THING, if ford cant afford to fix the problems with all its piece of shts, then sell your private jets do something right in your life you greedy rich pieces of sh*t. 1 year or 13000 mile warranty (the 5 year warranty cost too much)

- , Deltona, FL, USA

problem #75

Sep 082008

Windstar SEL 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 149,126 miles


bought vehicle used, was well maintained by the only previous owner. only had it one month and bam, transmission went. had rebuilt transmission put in with one year 13,000 mile warranty... already living paycheck to paycheck. after reading all complaints wonder why Ford doesn't have to pay for this sh*t. read next complaint from me

- , Deltona, FL, USA

problem #74

Oct 102009

Windstar LE 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

I have had this van only 2 years and my wife was coming home from work an lost all gears including reverse. My mechnic told me that this is a comon problem it is due to a snap ring that holds the clutch plate in place when this breaks all the clutch plates slant over and won't ingage. In order to fix this problem it needs to be rebuilt using a stronger snap ring not one from a Ford rebuild kit.

- , Brazil, IN, USA

problem #73

Oct 222009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

OMG! I had absolutely NO warning that there was a transmission slippage, NOTHING! I was driving on a 2 lane back road to get my son from school and it just acted like it had just went into neutral. I managed to get a little ways off the road (but was still about 3/4 of the way on the road) before I started to rage! The only gear that worked was reverse. After getting towed home, I talked to some other Windstar owners and found out that the same (or similar) thing had happened to them. I have already dumped about $1000 in it in the last month for other, unrelated issues and this was the last straw. I went out Saturday and just bought a new car. This was the first Ford I have ever owned, and there have been multiple issues with it from the will be the LAST Ford I ever own!

- , Mason, OH, USA

problem #72

May 212008

Windstar LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 104,000 miles


Like others no warning came off interstate let my wife off at front door of restaurant stepped on gas --nothing -had to get it towed 50 miles home. After repair continued to have problem -brought it in 7 times until finally the Ford dealer found broke every piece inside the NEW transmission- car has been a POS I drive 30k a year & buy vans (need for my wheelchair) every 3 years with 60-70 k on them & have never had a van with this much trouble. every month the check engine light comes on and there's another emission control problem. Now I'm having a problem with fuses and taillights/brake lights going out. drivers seat worn out with 135 k back electric window has broken bracket, ABS light on since I bought it but mechanics cannot find any problem. rear tailgate pistons need to be replaced --a never ending story -no more Fords -toyota or Kia from now on

- , Lilburn, GA, USA

problem #71

Sep 042009

Windstar ES 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 74,565 miles

Transmission completely failed. There should have been a recall for the number of transmissions that have been reported on the web.

- , Freelton, Ontario, Canada

problem #70

Jul 082007

Windstar SE 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

I was amazed when I saw how many other 2000 Windstar owners also had transmission problems.

While on a family vacation out of state in July 2007, smoke began pouring out from under the hood and the O/D light was flashing. I pulled over at the first exit, and opened the hood to find transmission fluid all over the engine compartment. The vehicle was towed 90 miles to a transmission repair facility near my home. They installed a factory rebuilt transmission at a $2500.00 charge with a one year warranty. I didn't think it was that bad for a vehicle with 120K miles on it.

However, two years later, at 145K miles, the transmission has begun to hesitate and won't shift into 4th gear without pumping the gas pedal. The O/D light is also blinking intermittently.

I considered repairing the transmission again, but after reading all of these complaints, I may have an ideal candidate for the cash for clunkers program.

- , Glastonbury, CT, USA

problem #69

Oct 112008

Windstar LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

This car/van is a piece of junk! We are the original owners and have had it serviced so many times that we are not planning on fixing it this time. We purchased the extended warranty only to find out that the problems we were having (stalling while going into a turn, stalling at a stop light) were not covered. We had the same exact problem fixed twice (of course, the dealers said it was different parts for each problem) and in October it just clunked into gear for the last time. Now it is sitting in our driveway getting pushed in and out of the way with our John Deere mower! Not sure what we are going to do but one this is for sure...we are NEVER buying another Ford. (We had a 1990 Thunderbird that we drove for 18 years...yes we put an engine and a tranny into that as well).

- , Conroe, TX, USA

problem #68

Aug 022009

Windstar SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,000 miles


Another member has just joined the Ford Windstar transmission sinking ship. My vehicle started acting up last night, slowly slipping into park. Today while coming home from the gym had it in park, then reverse and drive and once in drive it would hardly move. Not sure if I was going to make it home. Had to go out again, but it's stuck in park. Won't move. Luckily, I'm at home. Like all of you, I followed the manufactuer' s maintenance requirements. The car only had 77,000 miles on it. I am probably going to take your advice and sent the car off to the graveyard. Oh, last year I had a new headgasket put in at the tune of 1,500. What a waste. I was hoping to get at least 150,000 out of the thing. No more Fords for me.

- , Ephrata, PA, USA

problem #67

Jul 182009

Windstar 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 57,600 miles

Our Ford Windstar 2000 3.0L has 57,600 miles and the transmission recently went out. We were at a stop sign and when we attempted to drive again the van jolted like someone hit us from behind and then the van would not drive in any gear but reverse. The van needed to be towed. The transmission was beyond repair and we received a factory re manufactured trans. The mechanic discovered that the oil pan gasket was leaking and could burst any time causing more damage. We replaced the gasket. Total cost was $2524.90. We are the original owners of the van and have always maintained it at FORD Dealer. Changed oil every 5,000 miles and checkup as directed in owner's manual. My car is no longer under warranty. We should not have to replace transmission at 57,600 miles. FORD need to see all this complaints and do something about this . Ford Windstar is a lemon car and need to be recall by FORD.

I am looking for another car, but not orf FORD ! I am done with FORD.

- , Offutt AFB, NE, USA

problem #66

Jun 092009

Windstar SEL 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles

I am one of the many who experienced the same problem. Stop at a light, step on the throttle and POP goes the tranny. Towed to a repair shop. Tear down tranny to discover intermediate drum had failed. Turns out they spot weld the gear to the drum and it fails over time. Replacement completely re-designed. Gear now has a bearing instead of a bushing and is backed up on other side by a hub connecting the gear to the drum. Called Ford to inquire about a courtesy adjustment due to the fact this was a design defect and not a wear out failure. Basically told by Ford Motor Company to go sh*t in my hat it's not their problem. and they wonder why everyone is not buying American cars.

Everyone who has experienced this problem needs to contact Ford many times in writing to lodge a complaint and write to all consumer complaint sites you can find. Maybe they will finally admit their mistake and make good on it.

- , Manchester, NH, USA

problem #65

May 142009

Windstar LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

Well I guess I can just add my sad story to the hundreds out there. This is the SECOND TIME the tranny went out in two years. Just like the others, I stopped at a light, heard a loud pop when I started back up and the car would not move. This is no coincidence, now that I have read all the others complaints, and I am not taking it lying down either. This is the email, phone and address of the Ford Motor Company. If all of us deluge this company with our complaints, we cannot be ignored any longer. I'm mad as hell and I'm not backing down!

CEO: Alan R. Mulally Address: 1 American Rd. Dearborn, MI 48126 Phone: 313-322-3000 Website:

And to think they used our tax money to bail these suckers out!

- , Lakeland, FL, USA

problem #64

Apr 052007

(reported on)

Windstar LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles

I had my Windstar under a year, only about nine months. We bought it the day my son was born (coincidence). I was driving home from work at 2 am. I stopped at a red light, when the light turned green, I hit my gas and it felt like someone had hit me, or I hit something. I put the van in reverse to make sure that I didn't hit anything, and backed up. When I was satisfied that nothing was there, I put it in drive, and it would not move. At 2 am, I had to back it off to the side of the road and WALK to a gas station to call for help. I called Ford and their response was that the warranty ended 6,000 miles ago, not their problem!

We had to finance the repairs, because neither the dealership or Ford would claim responsibility. When I called Ford to argue for their help, they told me that I should have had it taken to a dealership so they could look at it and see if it was due to a defect. I told them that I didn't have $2,000 sitting around waiting to fix a van and I had to take it someplace where we could get it financed. Bottom line, the transmission was NEVER right after that. At 65,000 miles the check engine light came on. Service shop said it was a head gasket. I had to drive this sorry excuse for a car until it had 138,000 miles on it. I understand that cars don't last forever, but no transmission should go out at 42,000 miles.

- , Mt. Sterling, OH, USA

problem #63

Dec 202003

Windstar LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,282 miles

transmission went @ 60,000 km no help from dealership or no help from ford Canada...2500 to fix... presently still in use but slowly rusting away ..last ford ever

- , riverview, new brunswiock, Canada

problem #62

Apr 102009

Windstar LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles

My daughter was using our van to take her and the kids home from our house Friday evening. She backed out of the driveway but when she put it in drive, there was a load pop and then nothing. The van would not go forward. She tried D, 3, 2 and 1 but nothing happened. It would work in reverse but nothing in forward. This is the second time in less than 2 years that I have had to have the transmission rebuilt. So many little things have gone wrong with the van also. It seems that as soon as I get one thing fixed some other sensor or valve goes bad. But two transmission rebuilds! I am getting rid of this things as soon as I can. And the big 3 wonder why people buy foreign...

The cost this second time..$!858.00. Thankfully the shop paid the wrecker bill since they felt sorry for me.

- , Laconia, IN, USA

problem #61

Mar 142009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

This is the second time I have had to have this transmission rebuilt, the first time was at 88,000 miles!! Piece of !@!@##. If I didn't have 4 children and actually needed a van, I would push it into the river. How about Ford just figures out how to built good dependable vehicles. I think they should give me a free ford focus, they knew about the problems when they made em.

- , Moline, IL, USA

problem #60

Mar 082009

Windstar LX 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 127,231 miles

so, not long after I get the damn thing, the trans finally gives up. F$%& you too ford. Drove to Toronto, no troubles, getting back on the 401 on ramp, trans gives up in the middle of the 3-4 shift, and I get to make use of my RAS to get it towed. 175km. I want FORD to either completely replace the trans at no cost to me, or give me a gently used vehicle that wont strand me almost 200km from home with two other people.

- , London, Ontario, Canada

problem #59

Feb 092009

Windstar LX Sport V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 129,000 miles

We bought our Windstar last April with 111,000 miles. We automatically noticed little issues, but they were somethings we could just get used to. For example the lock actuator were bad and would make this awful noise. Anyway I was taking my oldest son to an important visit when the o/d light starts excessively blinking. I shutoff the van and restarted it and it went away for awhile. We had someone hook it up and check it out and they couldn't find anything wrong with it. Two days later at a stop sign the tranny went out and it would only go in reverse. It was stressful, especially since I have 3 boys and my oldest one has massive health issues and when he needs medical attention I need to get him there fast. Also because my youngest son is a newborn. All this aside, I figured we'd be alright for now because my mom lives close and I can borrow her van if needed. I did yesterday and while on my way to pick up my son from school her 2001 Ford Windstars tranny went out. There was no warning for her van. I stopped at a stop sign and then tried to accelerate and it wouldn't go, then I tried reverse and that didn't work either. Stranded in the middle of the road with a newborn in the back, very cold outside and a child waiting for me to pick him up for an appointment. Couldn't call mom cause I had her vehicle. My husband was at work 30mins away. Two vans lose their transmissions within a few weeks. I'm so angry. This causes so much inconvenience for our families. We already spent our refund to buy my husband a vehicle for work since his old truck as all but fallen apart. I think Ford should have recalled these vans because this is very dangerous not to mention costly. Maybe they would have customers buy more vehicles if they could depend on them. No wonder they are struggling so bad in this economy. The rest of us have to pay for any mistakes we make in our lives regardless of financial ability...why doesn't Ford?

- , Mount Auburn, IA, USA

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