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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
99,358 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.

2002 Ford Windstar suspension problems

suspension problem

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2002 Ford Windstar Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #38

Jul 092002

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 99,516 miles


The rear axle tube on my 2002 Ford Windstar cracked yesterday and cost me almost $400 to repair. I am a Ford certified repair technician and I have seen this same concern on so many Windstar that I feel that it warrants investigation for a possible safety recall. The axle tubes always split close to the left side and not along any seams or welds. This is a structural defect and a safety hazard. If the axle breaks completely it will cause complete loss of control of the vehicle. Please consider investigating this matter.

- South Park, PA, USA

problem #37

May 052010


  • 123,000 miles
The rear wheels on my 2002 Ford Windstar began to bow outward and the car was now noticeably shaking at speeds greater than 25 mph. We thought it might be a bad alignment. We took it to ntb and fortunately, they told us not to drive it any more. The rear axle had cracked and was in need of replacement.. after the replacement, I contacted Ford's regional office. I was told by the Ford regional office to refer my concern to my dealer here in columbus, but, I had already done so. Further communications with them lead to the service managers denial of any compensation for the Ford part malfunction. Rear axles on 2002 Windstar or any Windstar with those Taurus chasises, should not crack and separate causing a danger to my family. The manager told me to hold on to my receipts for a month or so before responding again to Ford's office. He assured me that a recall was possible. Meanwhile, I am out the $1700 it took to repair a definite flaw in the engineering.

- Columbus, OH, USA

problem #36

Oct 182009

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 110,000 miles
2002 Ford Windstar with "clunking" noise in the rear suspension. Took to repair shop and found that the rear axel was cracked nearly 1/2 way through. Mechanic said that he has never seen this type of failure before. This was in October of 2009 (I have repair bill with exact date and mileage if needed). The axel was replaced with a used axel at that time. June, 2010 again have noise in the rear suspension and take the vehicle to our mechanic. Again, the rear axel is cracked. Again, our mechanic has located a used axel which we are currently in process of having installed. Thankfully, we found the part failure before serious accident or injury happened but to have the same part fail when our mechanic had never seen that type of failure before seems to indicate a problem beyond normal wear.

- St. Louis Park, MN, USA

problem #35

Jul 012010


  • 115,000 miles


2002 Ford Windstar. Rear axle broke and wheels bowed in. Going about 30 mph with under 115,000miles on odometer. Heard some rattling noises in the 2 weeks leading up to the break, thought the spare under neath was making the noise because nothing else was loose. Regular corrosion & driving conditions. Car was towed and is currently at the shop. When tow truck operator was loading on flatbed, axle completely separated & he had difficulty getting it on safely. Vehicle was preowned but had a clean car fax and was never involved in any accidents.

- Bristol, PA, USA

problem #34

Jun 302010


  • 98,000 miles
While exiting NJ turnpike, the rear beam of my 2002 Ford Windstar fractured, creating severe negative camber on both rear wheels. By the time the vehicle was towed back home on a flatbed, the rear beam was cracked in two pieces. Contacted Ford dealer the next day, and the service manager stated that he was unaware of any such problems with this make and model of vehicle. I requested that he send out a field service representative to take a look at the damage, and the service manager told me that he would only have a technician look at the vehicle if I towed it to his dealership. I am in the process of determining whether I want my local independent service shop to do the repair or the Ford dealership.

- Souderton, PA, USA

problem #33

Jun 232010


  • 77,000 miles
I have 2002 Ford Windstar. I took it to a local repair shop on 6-23-10 because of a rattling noise when ever it went over a bump. The mechanic told me that the rear axle was cracked almost all the way through. He told me he could get one from a salvage yard and fix it for around $700. Luckily I had it taken care of when I did because we were planning a trip out of town the next weekend and it surely would have broken in half on our trip.

- Janesville, WI, USA

problem #32

Jun 182010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 91,000 miles


I was entering the highway as I started to accel I heard a loud thump. Immediately my car began swerving and almost tipped over, it felt as though the rear tires fell off. There was a large amount of smoke and sparks coming from the rear of the car and I struggled to stay in control of the vehicle. Ultimately the rear axle broke in half without warning and out of no where. I did not hit anything and was driving safely. Luckily there was a break in traffic or I have no doubt I would have hit other cars on the road. The car came extremely close to flipping, it tipped at one point and would have flipped on the passenger side if not for my quick reaction. The vehicle was towed and my mechanic immediately told me axles do not break like this and he advised me to call Ford to see if there was a manufactures problem with the axle. I called my local dealer and was advised that Ford have experienced no problems like mine and my car is out of warranty so there is nothing they could do. Only after I came home and searched the web did I realize there are thousands and thousands of other Windstar owners who experienced the same kind of breakage and I believe a more aggressive investigation needs to take place. The axle needs to be repaired and if this is a manufacturers defect it need to be fixed before someone is killed.

- Kings Park, NY, USA

problem #31

Jun 192010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 132,000 miles
Ford 2002 Windstar had a rattling sound when traveling over bumps and with a slight wheel pull to the left. Vehicle axle beam broke while car was traveling on rte 4 northbound at about 35 mph, in N. kingstown ri at approximately 2:15pm. I was able to navigate to the side of the road without injury to any other person or vehicle. Axle beam was cracked and bent causing the driver side tire to rub against the body of the car. The car was loaded onto a flat bed tow truck and the axle broke cleanly during Transport. This caused the passenger side wheel to rub against the car body during unloading. This car is now parked in a repair facility lot. Serious injury or accident were probably avoided through the fortunate combination of low speed of travel in the right hand lane combined with a light traffic situation on the highway.

- East Greenwich, RI, USA

problem #30

Jun 132010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 104,000 miles
2002 Ford Windstar rear axle is cracked on both sides. Vehicle has 104,000 miles. Well maintained and never abused. I was shocked and in awe when I noticed this today while I was rotating the tires. I went on the internet and found this was a common problem and under investigation. I am a safety professional and a member of the american society of safety engineers (ase). My two children ride in this vehicle every day. Some of these vans are used at daycare denters and small bus companies. This is a serious defect. I have read comments about people down-playing this, and feeling this is a waste of time. This investigation is completely justified and rational. Owr van is in great shape and showing no other signs of major rust or defects. If this had failed on the highway, the results could have been deadly. These are family vehicles designed specifically for transporting a bunch of kids. I drove two 5 year olds to a birthday party 40 miles on the highway yesterday with no knowledge of the problem. Feel free to contact me. I can provide pictures. Thank you

- Meriden, CT, USA

problem #29

Jun 032010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 123,000 miles
2002 Ford Windstar makes popping noise when turning right up a driveway. Repair shop found a crack in the rear axle.

- Ave, WI, USA

problem #28

Jun 052010


  • 151,000 miles


Heard about axles cracking on Ford Windstar. Took my 2002 Windstar to my mechanic and sure enough it is cracked. He advised me not to drive it. I need vehicle to get to work and do not have $900 plus to fix it.

- Rocky Point, NC, USA

problem #27

Sep 132009


  • 110,000 miles
I got a letter recently about a recall on my 2002 Ford Windstar. The recall was for the cruise control/brake light issue. As I was looking online for the name of the recall, I realized that there have been many complaints about the Windstar's axel problems. In September 2009 my Windstar started feeling like the back end was fishtailing but there was no sounded weird to. My husband followed me to the local sears auto store about 4 miles away. When we arrived he said that the tires looked like they were at a 45degree angle facing outward. When the mechanic looked at it, he said that we were luck to be alive and that the axle was holding by a one inch piece of metal. They said they were lucky they used the car life instead of the cross life or it would have broken the axle. Not one of the mechanics at that sears have ever seen a broken axle before and told me it was probably not fixable. They said they couldn't legally let us drive it because it was a safety issue. We had to have it towed to our mechanic. He did fix it but it cost over $1,000. I'm glad my family is safe and we weren't driving on the highway. With all the complaints and safety issues, why has there not been a recall on this Ford part.

- Hudson, MA, USA

problem #26

May 222010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 123,500 miles
While driving on a road with our three young children in the car, the car jerked, started making loud noises, and smoking. There was a significant amount of smoke pouring from the left (driver) side. We pulled to the side and saw that the driver's side rear tire was at an odd angle as was the passenger side rear wheel. When the tow-truck arrived and lifted it up, it was very clear that the axle had snapped for no reason. We were lucky that there were no injuries or a major accident, nor did the car catch fire but it smells of burned rubber.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #25

May 182010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 112,000 miles
2002 Ford Windstar; the rear axle broke in two while driving at 40 mph. Both tires tilted out, axle cracked a little to the left of center while looking at it from the rear of the vehicle. Fortunately my wife was able to control the van. I understand this has happened in hundreds of Windstar, and something needs to be done before people die, if they have not already.

- Pompton Plains, NJ, USA

problem #24

May 112010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 86,579 miles
Driving home from doctors office. I was traveling 45 M.P.H., it was raining. I was going around a curve when my vehicle, 2002 Ford Windstar started to fishtail. I stopped the car and went around checking to see if I might have a low tire. Tires seemed fine. I noticed a bumping noise when I would go around a curve. I got home and pulled the van up on ramps and looked underneath. I told my wife we aren't going anywhere because the axle is cracked and holding by a thread. I took the axle off and upon inspecting it closer the otherside is cracking. This vehicle only has 86,597 miles on it. I have owned Toyota's and a Suzuki, which I put 250,000 miles, on these vehicles and never had to replace an axle.

- Johnstown, PA, USA

problem #23

May 072010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 106,000 miles
2002 Ford Windstar. While driving on thruway 390 in corning New York. I noticed a shank in back end of van and smelled rubber burning. While trying to exit off the thruway the tires completely blew out and locked up. At 65 M.P.H. pulled off to side of thruway and rear back axle was snapped in half. Had vehicle towed home and ordered new parts. I have all the old parts call Ford they never head of this happening.

- West Seneca, NY, USA

problem #22

Apr 252010


  • 140,000 miles
Coming home from church one Sunday, we had to brake hard & suddenly to avoid a car that was on my side of the road. The van's rear wheel left the pavement and jerked to the side. The van handled wrong after that, and we took it to Ford to have it looked at. They replaced front drive shafts and said that the rear wheels were rubbing the wheel well, and I needed to have my shocks replaced. The van still made the same noises and had bad handling after this work was done, so took it back & had them look again for problem. They still didn't see any problem. My wife drove this van over 125 miles one day to take her sister for a medical procedure. She was nervous about the bad handling & swaying rear end, so drove slowly and stayed to the right on the freeway. She drove all the way to southern charlotte, nc on hwy. 85 from davidson county, nc. Huge amounts of traffic. When she got home she parked the van, & next day I came home from work and saw the tires were tilted in the rear. Went up & looked under the van, and the axle is broken in 2 places. My wife, her mother, and her sister were all in the van driving on the highway with a broken axle, because Ford told us that our van was all right. Called Ford and was told "what do you want me to do about it" you're driving an 8 year old vehicle! buy something else!" and also, "there is no implied warranty. Your van is out of warranty, but we'll be glad to do the work for you if you bring it in to our service department". or "Ford makes good quality vehicles. Would you like to hear about the new car buying incentives we have in place now"" get real. I will never buy another Ford in my life. Wife called Ford and spoke with them, and the age of the van was mentioned. She stated that I drive a 1986 Toyota truck, and the axle is not broken on it yet. She said henry Ford did not have this in mind when he started making the model T. shoddy work and inferior materials.

- Denton, NC, USA

problem #21

Jan 202009


  • 120,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Ford Windstar. While traveling at speeds of 25 mph over a pot hole, the contact noticed that the rear end of the vehicle was extremely low to the ground. The rear axle was replaced by a local independent mechanic. The failure mileage was at 120,000 and the current mileage was 134,000.

- Berkeley Heights, NJ, USA

problem #20

May 122010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 86 miles
Ford Windstar 2002 rear axle cracked. We were driving and noticed the van was fishtailing and there when we would go around a curve we noticed a noise coming from the back of the van. My husband got out and checked tires thought they may have been low. We have new tires on vehicle. We were driving the van the next day and it was fishtailing and the noise in the back of the van was getting worse. My husband put vehicle up on ramp and noticed that the rear axle is cracked. It is only holding by a thread.

- Johnstown, PA, USA

problem #19

Aug 202009

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 81,682 miles
2002 Ford Windstar would wander while driving, found rear axle cracked in center.

- Montville, NJ, USA

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