Notes: The 2004 Ford Explorer one of our worst vehicles on record. "Avoid like the plague" is putting it lightly.

The 2002-2005 Explorer has a very well-established record of expensive transmission failure at under 100k miles. The Explorer has an enclosed transmission which is typically replaced with a rebuilt transmission at a cost of almost $3,000.

Another common problem for the 2002-2005 Explorer is wheel bearing failure at around 90k miles, with a typical repair bill of $500 to $1000 depending on how many wheel bearings failed.

Adding insult to injury, the 2002-2005 Explorer also has a massive problem with the rear panel cracking. While it's a minor annoyance compared to transmission failure, ironically the crack usually goes right through the Ford logo.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
69,279 miles
Total Complaints:
67 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. should be recalled by manufactureer (31 reports)
  2. not sure (19 reports)
  3. replaced sun visor supports (12 reports)
  4. new mount and visor (3 reports)
  5. bought $25 fix from (2 reports)
2004 Ford Explorer accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2004 Ford Explorer Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #27

Nov 012007

Explorer Eddie Bauer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles


The plastic that holds my visors up all broke into pieces!!! This could possible be a terrible problem because not only can I not block out the sun anymore they also fall down in front of my face alot while driving!!! This could cause accidents and Ford needs to do something about this!!!!

- , Tyler, TX, USA

problem #26

Dec 112009

Explorer Eddie Bauer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles

Both of my visors cracked into little pieces. I take very good care of my cars and I couldn't believe this happened. What a crappy product. My explorer get very little use so It's not like I wore it out (2004 with 15,000 miles). This is my first Ford and I'm a little disappointed because of this. I hope the rest of this is built better then the visors.

- , Whittier, CA, USA

problem #25

Dec 012009

Explorer Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles

2004 Ford Explorers have a ton of problems, but one of the worst is that the sun visor hinges break causing the visor to dangle by it's electrical cord that powers the vanity mirror on it.

- , Rio, TX, USA

problem #24

Apr 012007

Explorer Eddie Bauer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles


Not sure exactly when this pain in the butt occurred, but again it is one of many annoying issues with this SUV that has occurred. Some have been fixed if in warranty but many are not because out of warranty. It was the passenger side visor.

- , Locust Grove, GA, USA

problem #23

Jan 052009

Explorer Eddie Bauer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles

I think this floppy, POS sun visor should be fixed by ford for free. It is a design error, and as such should be voluntarily recalled and fixed by the manufacturer. My lovely SUV looks like a ghetto ride, instead of the $40, 000,00 vehicle I paid for. Besides the fact it incessantly falls off the clip, because am not able to secure the visor back into the gaping hole left when the cheap plastic disintegrated. No wonder the auto industries are going broke, we pay the assembly line workers $80.00 an hour to put this sort of crap out!

- , Tampa, FL, USA

problem #22

Nov 182009

Explorer XLS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles

I'v had my Explorer for 5 years and I paid for the 6 year/60,000 warranty. I have 47,000 miles and have had a few things go wrong. Besides the transmission jumping in reverse at times, the emblem cracked all the way to the window in the rear. I'v since seen this on other Explorers. They didn't want to pay, but readily admitted it was a design flaw, which it is! Anyway, that cost $50.00. The latest is the sun visor cracked into about 7 pieces and literally fell out of it's hole in the roof of the car. What an inferior design that is. It will cost $103.00 + labor for a stinkin' design flaw!!! Just to buy another problem that will happen again, because it is so cheap!!! Let's face it folks. There's no pride in workmanship anymore.

- , Beltsville, MD, USA

problem #21

Mar 072009

Explorer Eddie Bauer V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,000 miles


Cheap mount designed to be eye pleasing rather than functional. probably money saving for the company. You feel really great when someone steps into your 35000 dollar vehicle and sees visor hanging down, like a junkyard Pinto!

- , Sun City, AZ, US

problem #20

Aug 252009

Explorer Eddie Bauer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

I have had the passenger side replaced twice under warranty and finally the third time I rigged up a METAL piece to hold the damn thing up. Now the driver's side finally gave up and fell out. My 2000 F-150 has never had this problem and the visors are attached with metal parts. I cannot understand why on a top of the line explorer (Eddie Bauer) they decided that plastic would be the best material to use for this. This thing is meant for soccer moms. Don't they realize soccer moms are harder on cars due to children than anyone else. Thank god I don't have kids, the whole truck might have fallen apart. Ford should recall/replace poor design. As a manufacturing engineer for a Fortune 500 company, we would have never expected to keep customers if our product crumbled in their hands.

- , Austin, TX, USA

problem #19

Aug 052009

Explorer XLT 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 101,000 miles

I've always been a Ford person, but that is starting to change quickly. I'm amazed at the thoughtless people at Ford that they KNOW about these POORLY designed parts and don't seem to care. I'd like to see the IDIOT that came up with the idea to make the the hardware for the sun visors out of PLASTIC! 'Just buy another one' that is the exact same poorly designed part that will break again. Also the fiberglass panel on the tail gate is another poorly made part.

- , Acworth, GA, USA

problem #18

Jun 052009

Explorer XLT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles

I've had to have both visors changed and the one on the passenger side changed twice. This should be recalled as the plastic cracks too easily.

- , Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #17

Jul 172009

Explorer XLT 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles


plastic support on sunvisor broke ,the side that it swivels on.replacement unit at dealer 113.48. without installation.bbb should force ford to repair at no cost to owner.almost wrecked when mine fell off.

- , holiday, fl, USA

problem #16

Jun 132009

Explorer Eddie Baur V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

The drivers Sun visor broke while I was driving. The pieces of plastic just started falling down from the roof. Now the passengers side is cracked and you can hear it crack more if someone tries to use it. What a piece of junk in this area of the car. Ford needs to recall this. It is a known problem and should be corrected.

- , Anderson, SC, USA

problem #15

Jan 012009

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

Both visors are broke because of cheap plastic parts being installed...unbelievable!

I found the visors on "" for around $62 each...cheapest I've seen.

- , Warner Robins, GA, USA

problem #14

Jun 092009

Explorer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,003 miles

My parents left for vacation and I started driving the explorer. It started chipping and one day just plain fell off. Cheap plastic, and I got blamed for it.

- , Sugar Land, TX, USA

problem #13

Jul 032009

Explorer XLT 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles

2004 Explorer XLT. Same problem here. Sun visor broke and fell down on passenger side, driver side is all cracked up and about to break and fall as well. What happens if the driver side falls, while driving, and causes an accident? Went to dealer. Estimated repair cost for both visors: $350.00. RIDICULOUS! This is clearly a manufacturer defect, and apparently a well established issue. It's time to go after them. Start filing BBB complaints on line and contacting Ford.

- , Hosuton, TX, USA

problem #12

May 292009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

this sucks. both driver and pax visor mounts broke within two weeks of each other. can't purchase the small pieces without buying the entire unit each one costs 175.00 which is bull crap for a defective part. should be on recall list

- , Kingsland, GA, USA

problem #11

Oct 012008

Explorer EB 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,000 miles

sun visor support cracked, visor needs to be taped in place. junk.

- , Sicklerville, NJ, USA

problem #10

Jan 052009

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,000 miles

This is getting ridiculous. I have never had a vehicle like this before. The visor problems has been so aggravating. I have shoved paper towels up in the roof to get it to stay. And if someone else gets in my car and puts it down, I am going to go crazy. I guess I need to put a DO NOT TOUCH sign up. THANKS FORD!!!

- , Brunswick, GA, USA

problem #9

Sep 212008

Explorer Eddie Bauer V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,000 miles

2004 Ford Explorers have a ton of problems, but one of the worst is that the sun visor hinges break causing the visor to dangle by it's electrical cord that powers the vanity mirror on it. Every morning I have a 7 mile drive headed south on a main thoroughfare and I can't see to change lanes because I have lost the use of my sun visor because Ford has not been held responsible for the cheap garbage they produced in 2004! The dangerous transmission problem is bad enough, but to have a visor dangling in your face while you are trying to drive is incredibly unsafe! And they are asking us for money for a bailout?! As far as I am concerned, they should be worried about getting bailed out of jail for stealing from people and then endangering their lives! Please hold Ford accountable for the cheap garbage they sold to people for $30.000 plus in 2004. What happens when I have a wreck because i can't see? Are we to consider a sun visor a luxury item now?

Die, Ford, die!

- , Memphis, TN, USA

problem #8

Jan 012006

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles

I contacted the dealership when my visor mounts broke and was told it was not a recall item. I see now that someone else has also had this complaint early on in the ownership of their vehicle. As you can see, I have very few miles on my explorer. It is well cared for and has not only this problem, but a broken fuel gauge, and a cracked back door panel at the back window as well. All of which should be recall items. IF WE ALL JOIN TOGETHER AND SEND OUR COMPLAINTS TO THIS ADDRESS WE MAY GET THE RECALLS WE NEED:

Ford Motor Company

Customer Relationship Center

P.O. Box 6248

Dearborn, MI 48126

- , Clovis, CA, USA

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