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 4 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #7

Oct 152008

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,400 miles


No replacement part for the broken plastic ring but the ford dealership will be glad to order a new visor for $89.00 each. When asked if the problem has been corrected with the replacement part, the part man just laughed and said they are always out of stock. This is just the reason the Big 3 are going under. $28,000 Explorer in '04, now worth less than $8,000 and now plastic parts breaking, plastic panel under the rear window cracked and now leaking oil. This Explorer has not been off road, used as a tow vehicle or abused in any way.

- , Magnolia, TX, USA

problem #6

Jul 242008

Explorer XLS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

Yep. My visor fell in my lap again. In Phoenix. In the summertime. And none of the salvage yards I've called has another replacement visor. Because every other Explorer owner has already purchased them all for the same reason, I'm sure. And the passenger-side one is doing the same thing. Grrrr! Seriously, I'm not paying $250 at the Ford dealership for a visor.

- , Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #5

Oct 242006

Explorer XLS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

This was the first time the support for the visor cracked. I went to the dealership we bought the car at and they wanted to charge me $250 for a new visor so I got one at the local salvage yard instead for $35. I hate this vehicle.

- , Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #4

Dec 202007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles


Both of my visors cracked. One completely shattered and I opted for the support by packing tape repair. The other is cracked in several places but is still holding because I have a sign on it that says "DONT USE". I contacted Ford and they offered me their reason to purchase a $80 visor for a broken piece of plastic.

Dear David H_____,

Part assemblies are provided for more efficient repair procedures. The part you are requesting is only available as an assembly. All Ford parts purchased from a Ford and Lincoln-Mercury dealer come with a warranty.

Currently, there are various special incentives and offers available for Ford Motor Company products. I encourage you to visit us at Simply choose the vehicle you may be interested in, enter your zip code, and all current offers will be displayed for you to review.

Sincerely, Julienne Customer Relationship Center Ford Motor Company

I am so happy they are thinking of us by making things easier. Ford, always looking out for their customers.

- , Danville, PA, USA

problem #3

Sep 012007

Explorer Eddie Bauer V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

Plastic part has been cracked for a while. Now the whole thing broke apart and the visor is dangling by the wire. I have duct taped it up and I have to get it fixed, but after reading the other complaints, I am saving up before I go get an estimate. Did anyone else find a solution? It looks like the passenger side is beginning to crack also...

- , Apex, NC, USA

problem #2

Apr 102008

Explorer XLT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,000 miles

drivers side plastic attachment piece cracked visor falls down - (has lighted mirror) wire connected inside bracket -

went to Ford parts must buy entire NEW visor @ $80.00 without install -

parts guy said wire connects with plug - WRONG - headliner must be removed , etc.

The little plastic piece should cost no more than $ 10.00 , however the part is on the visor the a "rivet" ike attachment and comes as a unit -



- , Pompano Beach, FL, US

problem #1

Aug 202007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,000 miles

The sun visor on my 2004 Explorer fell off. The little plastic piece that holds the visor in cracked into multiple pieces and fell out. Try driving in Phoenix in the summer without a sun visor. The passenger side was cracked as well. The dealership acknowledged they used cheap plastic. After they repaired it, the passenger one immediately cracked again and had to be replaced again.

- , Phoenix, AZ, USA

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