NHTSA Defect Investigations for the 1996 Ford Explorer

The Office of Defects Investigations (ODI) is an office within the NHTSA which investigates serious safety problems in the design, construction or performance of vehicles. The NHTSA is authorized to order manufacturers to recall and repair vehicles, if the ODI finds a safety issue. NHTSA investigations for the 1996 Ford Explorer, both ongoing and closed, are listed below:

  1. ELECTRICAL FIRE IN CENTER CONSOLE NHTSA Preliminary Evaluation #PE97010

    • Status:
      CLOSED
    • Date Opened: March 13, 1997
    • Date Closed: September 04, 1997
    • Recall: no recall issued

    Component(s): Electrical System

    Summary: This investigation revealed that console fires in the subject vehicles most often occurred while vehicles equipped with the lamp outage module (lom), which is part of the message center, were towing a trailer and which had been modified by adding an aftermarket trailer wiring harness into the vehicle's taillight circuits.the owner's manual states "never and more than other trailer light bulb to one circuit" however trailers frequently contain several bulbs.the resulting excess current passing through the lom could cause it to overheat resulting in a fire.proper aftermarket installation of trailer wiring requires the use of a bypass module, which obtains power for the trailer lights directly from the battery rather than from the vehicle's tail light and stop lamp circuits, or the use of the manufacturer's wiring harness.in a letter dated September 2, 1997, Ford notified ODI that it intends to take action to preclude further incidents including issuing a technical service bulletin to its dealers, notifying trailer rental associations and agencies where known, and advising owners by letter of the proper method for connection of trailer tow wiring on the subject vehicles.there was no defect trend in the subject vehicles identified as a result of this investigation, and further expenditure of Agency resources is not warranted to continue the investigation.

    NHTSA: For detailed information & supporting documents, see the official NHTSA page concerning investigation #PE97010 »

  2. ACCELERATOR PEDAL NHTSA Preliminary Evaluation #PE99068

    • Status:
      CLOSED
    • Date Opened: November 01, 1999
    • Date Closed: March 09, 2000
    • Recall: no recall issued

    Component(s): Power Train

    Summary: There is no summary currently available

    NHTSA: For detailed information & supporting documents, see the official NHTSA page concerning investigation #PE99068 »

  3. FRONT SUSPENSION STABILIZER BAR LINK NHTSA Preliminary Evaluation #PE00039

    Component(s): Suspension

    Summary: There is no summary currently available

    NHTSA: For detailed information & supporting documents, see the official NHTSA page concerning investigation #PE00039 »

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