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.

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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
50,356 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.

2003 Ford Windstar engine problems

engine problem

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2003 Ford Windstar Owner Comments

problem #9

Mar 012011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


2003 Ford Windstar. Consumer writes in regards to the performance of the Ford Motor Company and two safety recalls the consumer stated the inspections and repairs were not conducted in a timely, efficient, and responsible manner. The consumer stated when he finally received an appointment for the axle inspection, it was determined the axle was cracked in three places. The dealer did not have the replacement parts and the vehicle was deemed unsafe to drive, and therefore, it was left at the dealer for over a month. The consumer stated he then received another recall relating to the subframe. The consumer contacted the dealer regarding the second recall and was informed they were aware of it and he would be contacted when the repairs for the second recall had been completed. The consumer received a voice mail from the dealer stating the parts for the axle had arrived. However, it was discovered the engine had an oil leak, the sway bar link was broken in the front, the right front tire was badly worn on the inside and the left rear shock was completely blown out.

- Merrimac, MA, USA

problem #8

Feb 202011


  • 157,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Windstar. The contact was driving 50 mph when the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle was towed to the contacts residence. The dealer was not contacted in regards to the failure. The manufacturer was not contacted. The failure mileage was 157,000.

- Norris City, IL, USA

problem #7

Nov 282010


  • miles
Engine light comes on every few weeks after being reset. Codes are for lean bank 1, 2. vehicle was diagnosed with an intake leak. Mechanics have said that this is a long standing issue with the 3.8L engine in the Windstar. Cost of repair is $600+. vehicle will not pass emissions without being repaired.

- Spanaway, WA, USA

problem #6

Aug 272010


  • 165,258 miles


My 2003 Ford Windstar cuts off going down the road, 30mph to what ever you are running don;T care. You have to stop and coast off the road best you can put it in park start it up again and then go on, may do it again or again in a day or so this needs to be placed on a recall, everyone I talk to 6 out of 10 people with these vans have the same thing and no one knows what to do about it, please help before some one gets hurt or killed for this crazy mess!!!! thank you

- Monroe, NC, USA

problem #5

Mar 252009


  • miles
Vehicle was skipping/jerking when trying to accelerate (happened recently), ABS and brake lights come on and off w/O warning, inside dome lights were flickering, and front windshield wipers would not stop after being turned off, until car was cut off (happened over 2 year period). Had a dealer to fix problems to a tune of about $2300.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #4

Aug 282006


  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,756 miles
My van is sputtering and I was told it is due to the valve cover leaking and my upper intake is full of oil. In addition, that the engine is taking in air and basically my engine is covered in oil. Ford service then proceeds to tell me that the extended warranty will not cover this because it is a fault in design by Ford and on newer models this design has been fixed. Ford will not cover repairs either because I am just over 3 years and over 36K miles. If it is a fault in design by Ford as indicated by their dealership service, then I should not have to cover repair charges.

- Mason, OH, USA

problem #3

May 262006

Windstar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


This is a copy of the letter I sent to Ford recently. I thought I would try both paths to see if there is any other information out there about this issue. Ford Motor Company customer relationship center P.O. Box 6248 dearborn, mi 48126 hello, I have a 2003 Ford Windstar VIN xxxxxxxxx that has a problem. {dealer name} has looked at the problem twice and found nothing. The problem has occurred twice in the last 12 months. So far it has happened within the first five minutes of operating the van. If the van is in drive and you are holding pressure on the brakes for an extended period of time (extra long stop lights), the following will happen. The engine will increase in rpms and jolt forward until you get enough pressure on the brakes to hold it at a stop. If you put it in neutral or park, it will continue to move forward if you let up on the brakes. The only way to get the van out of the situation is to shut it off. Once you restart it, everything is fine. By pressure on the brakes, I mean you better push the pedal to the floor or you will be moving! I am not sure if my wife could hold it long enough to get it turned off. The first event happened in stop and go traffic at a congested intersection. I almost rear ended the car in front of me. The second event happened when I was the first vehicle at a stop light. When it jolted forward I was in the intersection. Luckily I was not hit by another car. My question is, what can be done about this problem? my wife will no longer drive the van because she is scared of it. The problem will happen again. Hopefully it will not cause an accident, but eventually will. So I would like to resolve the issue before it becomes a bigger problem. The van has also had other electrical abnormalities.

- Lancaster, PA, USA

problem #2

Aug 162005

Windstar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 31,600 miles
While idling at a stop light with brakes activated, engine suddenly accelerated, starting car moving forward. Releasing the over drive option on the gear shift stopped the uncontrolled engine revving. This was the third occurrence of this problem. I have a visit to the dealership scheduled to investigate.

- Medina, OH, USA

problem #1

Jun 042003

Windstar 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,592 miles
The consumer noticed the engine raced when a stop was made. Consumer had to place the engine in neutral in order to stop the vehicle. The motor raced three to four RPM's when the consumer tried to stop. The computer didn't show a sign of failure.

- Jacksboro, TN, USA

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