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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
12 / 0
Average Mileage:
46,854 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.

2013 Ford Explorer engine problems

engine problem

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2013 Ford Explorer Owner Comments (Page 1 of 10)

problem #188

Aug 172022


  • 160,000 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that while driving at 65 MPH, the coolant warning light illuminated on the instrument panel as the vehicle hesitated upon depression of the accelerator pedal. The contact was able to restart the vehicle; however, the vehicle would not accelerate above 35 MPH. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who discovered a leak in the water pump. The contact called two dealers and was informed that there were no recalls on her vehicle for the water pump and was given an estimate for repair. The manufacturer had yet to be notified of the failure. The vehicle had yet to be repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 160,000.

- Wamego, KS, USA

problem #187

Jun 172022


  • miles
Water pump failure - engine overheating and leaking coolant. Potenential to cause catastrophoic damage to engine. Not safe. Appears to be common with 2013 Ford Explorers. Many of the same cases and complaints found online but I cannot find the recall.

- Savannah, GA, USA

problem #186

Jun 062022


  • miles
While driving, the vehicle will drop out of drive, the engine will run roughly, the engine will not respond to accelerator pedal inputs. The service engine light will illuminate. If I coast to the side of the road, turn off the vehicle, then restart it, it runs normally as if nothing has gone wrong. The first four times this happened, no codes were set in the computer. This occurs at varying speeds and varying conditions. The last two times it occured, I had already driven the vehicle for 2 hours on the highway (70-75 mph). Once I left the highway, I drove for another 50-60 miles and then the issue recurred. Finally today, the vehicle set a P2111 code, which indicates an issue with the throttle actuator system. This is a dangerous situation. Each time it happend I was in traffic, sometimes heavy. Luckily I was able to quickly pull off safely and no crash occured, but a collision certainly could have happened.

- Wellington, FL, USA

problem #185

May 022022


  • miles


Unknown, heater started blowing cold air, and realized was low on coolant. Filled up coolant but noticed was leaking coolant when came home from work and parked car. Cannot locate leak as of yet but seems to be leaking from water pump as it is not a hose issue that I can feel or see. From research, it seems like Ford has had several complaints and failures with the water pump but no recall. If this part is continuing to fail, why has it not been recalled? This presents danger to the engine, car, and families in it. The pump is also located inside the engine making repairs with labor come around 2-4K. This should be covered by Ford due to failure rates reported and poor design choices made by Ford.

- Red Lion, PA, USA

problem #184

Apr 052022


  • miles
I was driving down the road and my engine overheat alarm light went off. Tried replacing the thermostat and this did not help the situation. Then noticed coolant fluid leaking. Tried replacing the coolant fluid and it was coming out as fast as I was putting it in. My safety was put at risk due to this occuring while I was driving down the road with no warning. I carry my children in the car. I was able to slowly get my car back to my house and I had a mechanic come out and take a look and was told it was my water pump that had failed.

- Claremore, OK, USA

problem #183

Mar 102022


  • 127,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that while driving at an unknown speed, the vehicle lost motive power. The contact stated that she was able to coast safely off the road and assess the vehicle. The contact stated that there was water on the ground as well as leaking from her vehicle. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic and remained with the independent mechanic. The contact was informed that the water pump failed and caused the engine to fail to operate as needed. The dealer and manufacturer were notified of the failure but offered no assistance. The approximate failure mileage was 127,000.

- Inman, SC, USA

problem #182

Jan 172022


  • miles


Water pump leak inside the engine, causing coolant and oil to mix. Car overheats

- La Vergne, TN, USA

problem #181

Feb 252022


  • miles
Carbon monoxide levels in the cab. Persistent 10ppm co2 in the cab of the vehicle. Peak at 30ppm. The recall for this issue had previously been completed. 2nd issue was a valve allowed oil to infiltrate the intake which resulted in odor in the vehicle

- Dayton, IA, USA

problem #180

Jul 152021


  • miles
While on the highway July 2021 a red warning light flashes, I didn-€™t get to see exactly what it said, it went away. Shortly after that I stopped at a Walmart service location off the highway, but by then the light wasn-€™t on and the mechanic said -€œthey don-€™t do anything regarding engines-€. Then about a week later it flashed again then I was ready and able to take a picture (attachment #1) it said -€œengine coolant over temperature-€. I called several repair shops and dealerships and had gotten a few estimates (attachment #2). One place added a lot of coolant (Grease Monkey) and that seem to get me going and I didn-€™t see the light again until about 3 to 4 weeks later. Then my husband and I had to start checking my coolant level daily to see if more coolant had to be added which most times it did. The high cost for repair - is in getting to the water pump - which I-€™m being told by at least 4 people can take 11 to 12 hours of labor. One repair place said -€œI may be better off by getting rid of the SUV-€. I previously had a 2003 Ford Explorer (original owner) kept it for 10 years then upgraded to a 2013 Ford Explorer (original owner) and thought I could do the same, however costly problems started in 2021. Ford is aware of all of the water pump related issues and should have a recall and/or make repairs free of charge. This has been apparently going on for 10+/- years. In October 2021 once while on a rural highway in Colorado about 30 minutes from home my car ran hot and stalled on me and my son who is disabled and cannot walk. We putt putted over to a restaurant lot, had to let the car cool down to then add water. After that we almost made it home before the light came on again, we were about 3 minutes from home. That was very scary to be driving in traffic and your car stalls. My car has been sitting for the last 4 months because of the cost for needed repairs.

- Canon City, CO, USA

problem #179

Jul 152021


  • 93,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Explorer. The contact stated while driving 35 mph, the instrument cluster showed that the engine was overheating. The vehicle stalled and was not drivable. The contact called the local dealer and made them aware of the failure. The contact towed the vehicle to an independent mechanic and was informed that the water pump and engine were needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not diagnosed nor repaired. The manufacturer had been informed of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 93,000.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #178

Dec 012020


  • 70,000 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that the water pump was leaking coolant and water causing the engine to overheat. The temperature gauge indicated that the vehicle was overheating. The contact took the vehicle to a certified mechanic who diagnosed that the water pump had failed and needed to be replaced. The contact stated that the failure was related to an unknown Ford recall regarding the water pump however, the VIN was not included. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The contact was referred to NHTSA for assistance. The approximate failure mileage was 70,000.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #177

Mar 142021


  • miles
The poorly placed water pump. 2013 Ford Explorer XLT with the water pump inside engine. Just got the car 6 months ago has 107900 on it. Yesterday started leaking coolant. Have to take to the Ford dealer today.

- Worcester, MA, USA

problem #176

Jan 112021


  • 137,500 miles
Catalytic converter failed at 137,000 miles

- Gretna, NE, USA

problem #175

Nov 032020


  • miles
Smelling a weird smell coming from the cabin like carbon monoxide smell.

- Panama City, FL, USA

problem #174

Oct 212020


  • 67,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that while driving at 4O mph the vehicle vibrated and then the engine shut off. The contact coasted to the lane closest to the side of the road and stopped and restarted the vehicle. The contact then was able to proceed back to his home. The contact called the dealer koons Ford of annapolis 2540 riva road, annapolis, md 21401 (410) 224-2100 and they ran a diagnostic test after the vehicle was bought in but could not get a code or duplicate the issue. The issue occurred twice and the vehicle was at the dealer unrepaired. The manufacturer had not yet been contacted. The failure mileage was 67,000.

- Annapolis, MD, USA

problem #173

Jan 032020


  • 100,000 miles
Four 2013 Ford Explorer ran hot while I was operating the vehicle. We thought it was low on antifreeze so we added some. Out of precaution, we began monitoring the antifreeze level and notice that the level would drop, over a couple of weeks, enough which required us to have to add more antifreeze. My wife called Ford's service department to schedule an appointment to determine/confirm the problem. We were told that it sounds like the water pump was may be defective. On our way to the appointment, the vehicle shut down and had to be towed the rest of the way. Upon inspection, we were told that antifreeze had leaked into the engine, and further, the engine was damaged because of a broken timing chain.

- Charlotte, Nc, NC, USA

problem #172

Sep 152020

Explorer 6-cyl

  • 197,625 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that the vehicle was equipped with a msa altair floor xr gas detector which showed high levels of carbon monoxide. The contact stated that per one hour of driving the detector showed14 ppm (parts per minute). The contact stated that the failure was constant on a daily basis. The contact stated that the carbon monoxide detector was calibrated on a daily basis. The contact stated that his wife complained several times about headaches while driving in the vehicle. The contact stated that he sustained severe health issues and had heart ablation surgery from the carbon monoxide. The contact was concerned that continual driving presented a grave danger to health and safety. The vehicle was taken to chenoweth Ford Inc (1564 E pike St, clarksburg, wv 26301, (800) 344-1108) and an appointment was scheduled to have the vehicle repaired. The contact attempted to reach the manufacturer but, was unable to speak with a live representative. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 197,625.

- Buckhannon, WV, USA

problem #171

Jul 202020


  • miles
I have had the vehicle for about three months and have had more problems from it then anyone can imagine from the wrench light ( transmission) to the torque converter to camshaft codes to converters to sensors, ac condenser went out, brake issues after replacing new pads and rotors, this has been a nightmare. The truck only has 84K miles and I have experienced more issues from it then any vehicle I have ever had. Ford really made junk this time.

- Mchenry, IL, USA

problem #170

Jul 122020


  • 158,513 miles
For the past several months had a slight ticking sound at warm or cold startup. Was getting tired/achy while driving more than an hour. The sound became much louder over the weekend. It has been diagnosed as a cracked front exhaust manifold and may have been leaking co into the passenger compartment.

- Fort Morgan, CO, USA

problem #169

Jul 102020


  • 65,000 miles
Anytime I drive this vehicle in rain or wet roads the main belt slips and squeals. The result is major loss of power on many occasions. My dash lights up like a christmas tree, I lose power to steering, wipers, fans, etc. The belt slipping is causing the alternator not to function which in turns causes loss of power. It's always when it's wet which is even scarier bc I have lost steering and engine power. This happens on any roads while the engine is under a load.

- Kingston, NH, USA

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