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.


fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
77,697 miles
Total Complaints:
24 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (19 reports)
  2. replaced sensor (3 reports)
  3. replace ABS control module (2 reports)
2004 Ford Explorer brakes problems

brakes problem

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2004 Ford Explorer Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #4

Nov 082007

Explorer XLT 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,520 miles


Everything seem to go out when the warranty expires no matter what vehicle you get even by getting the extended warranty it will not cover a lot of the repair parts or labor.

Or you can't afford the deductible . I have a 2004 ford explorer with only about 20,752 miles. My abs light comes on at times when I apply the brakes once and at times it won't come on for two days.

- , Moore, OK, USA

problem #3

Nov 152007

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 34,498 miles

I bought a used 2004 Explorer with 21,000 miles on it in February 2007 and had it approximately 3 months and I would be going down the road and the truck would just shut off. Thankfully, I had taken extended warranty on the truck. Got that problem fixed and just a mere few months later, now the ABS light is staying on. What a pain in the butt to continuously have problem after problem. This is my second Ford Explorer to own and I can say I won't be owning another one after the continual problems with this one. Haven't even had the truck a year yet. And the truck hasn't hit the 35,000 mile mark. I shutter to think what will happen when it comes to 35,001 miles.

- , Mc Kinney, TX, USA

problem #2

Oct 252007

(reported on)

Explorer XLT Sport 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,000 miles

One year left to go on payments and now the fun begins I ABS light has decided to show it's annoying self at odd times and then not come back on for days. I can start the car in the morning and it will stay on and then start it again in the afternoon and it won't come on...makes no sense! I have yet to take it to the dealership considering I no longer have a warranty on the thing but keep wondering if I'm gonna have a problem if I have to stop fast. After reading the comments on here and even though I really like my Explorer, I may take the hubby's advice and get a Chevy Tahoe for my next vehicle! Guess that means...bye, bye ABS light...LOL

- , St. Petersburg, FL, USA

problem #1

Dec 082006

(reported on)

Explorer LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

The ABS idiot light woud come on and off at various times. On a cold start up it would stay off. Over a period of a month the light would come on frequently and a a restart would not shut it down.

After a gas gage problem previously I began to think the dash board had a problem. Ford dealer said no problem, just pay for a new sensor. A few thousand miles later the gas gauge failed for the 2nd time with the same Ford BS, Just Pay the problem will go away.

The "Just pay" and the problem will go away worked... the customer has left Ford forever.

- , Westerville, OH, USA

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