really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
36,056 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.

1998 Ford F-150 steering problems

steering problem

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1998 Ford F-150 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #61

Apr 112006

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


1-driving on highway-highway speeds, changed lanes 2-tie rod end separated, caused loss of control, swerved into breakdown lane 3-truck was delivered to repair station, tie rod end needed replacement **this is the second tie rod that has failed in this truck while driving. The first failure caused loss of control as well and was actually worse at slower speed.

- Halifax, MA, USA

problem #60

Jul 012005

F-150 4WD 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 83,000 miles
Consumer filed a complaint before regarding a similar problem. Consumer did not have an ODI number. While driving she turned into driveway to turn around and tie rod end broke off. This happened on June 30, 2005. This was a safety problem. Consumer did not know what caused the tie rod end to break.

- East Nassau, NY, USA

problem #59

Jun 022005

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 88,105 miles
I was traveling 30 mph when the tie rod of my 1998 F150 came apart.all of a sudden I had no steering period. There was no indication this was bad, no bad tire wear, no shaking, nothing. Between the towing, replacing the part & an unneeded alignment iam out 200$ which is cheap cosidering what could of happened.

- Erin, NY, USA

problem #58

May 212005


  • 140,000 miles


1) driving and the first the right side wheel popped, then about A2 weeks later the left side popped 2) unable to move vehicle 3) had to buy new ball joints yes we still have the ones from the factory, the factory parts are not greasable, the new parts are

- Mansfield, OH, USA

problem #57

May 162005

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles
Ford F150 drivers side outer tierod ball joint failed.the tierod completly seperated from steering knuckle. The truck was pulling into a parking lot. No damage to my vehicle. Replacement parts have been purchased and will be installed.

- North Attleboro, MA, USA

problem #56

Oct 202004

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,700 miles
While making a left turn into a parking lot at 15 mph or less, the consumer heard a loud noise and the consumer lost steering control. The vehicle was towed to a local repair shop. The mechanic informed the consumer that tie rod was broken and need to be replaced.

- New Limerick, ME, USA

problem #55

Oct 152004

F-150 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,450 miles


While driving, the drive side tire rod sheared off. The driver was able to pull over. The consumer had the vehicle repaired at the nearest mechanic. Please fill in additional information. The inner tie rod was separated and fell apart. The wheels turned in different directions.

- Manistee, MI, USA

problem #54

Apr 162004

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,254 miles
Driving over railroad tracks appoximately 40 mph, right outer tie rod end separated, causing loss of steering. I have replaced inner and outer tie rod ends on both sides of the vehicle. Old part was thrown away.

- Grosse Ile, MI, USA

problem #53

Sep 122004

F-150 4WD

  • Manual transmission
  • 120,600 miles
I just read the article about Ford truck owners having tie rod problems. I did receive a letter. I had one tie rod break two weeks ago, with no warning at all. I had not yet opened the letter.

- Pinckney, MI, USA

problem #52

Jul 132003


  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,211 miles
While pulling into a parking space front tie rods failed. As a result, steering became inoperative.

- New Haven, OH, USA

problem #51

Aug 232004


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Right front tie rod broke in half and separated from the tie adjustor. Consumer lost control of vehicle after driving 25 mph

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #50

Sep 072004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles
The vehicle started shaking uncontrollably while driving. The driver was able to maintain control of the vehicle and pulled over. The consumer noticed that the driver side tie rod had sheared off from the ball joint socket. The consumer was able to drive it to the dealer. The mechanic informed the driver that the tie rod and lower ball joints needed replacement. Please fill in additional information.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #49

Jun 212004

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,503 miles
During normal street driving, the left outer tie rod end popped off. It caused the tire to veer left and shattered the left rim. Ford refused to do anything to the vehicle, as it was out of warranty. I replaced both inner and outer ends on the left and right, out of fear of failure at a later time or worse, a failure at highway speed. After discussion with Ford, they wouldn't admit this was a problem ( abnormally rapid wear!) and refused to compensate me for the parts and time.

- Bay City, MI, USA

problem #48

Jun 102004


  • 130,000 miles
While driving tie rod snapped. Consumer managed to pull over, and had the vehicle towed. Dealership was notified, but did not resolve the problem.

- White Lake, MI, USA

problem #47

Jul 302004

F-150 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles
While making a sharp right turn driver's side inner tie rod detached. When this occurred consumer had no control of the front driver side wheel. This almost resulted in an accident, but the pick up was going at a slow speed and the driver was able to maintain control of the pick up. The tie rod could not be lubricated. The inner tie rod was replaced.

- Vienna, OH, USA

problem #46

May 282004

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,249 miles
Vehicle: 1998 Ford F-150 4X4 with 68,000 miles. Original and sole driver of vehicle which is in excellent shape with no driveability issues prior to incident. Events: Traveling down a straight road at 35 mph failure: Catastrophic failure of driver's side tie rod resulting in loss of control of vehicle. Correction of failure: Ford dealer, sunnyside motor company, holden, MA 01520, 1-800 649-4333, invoice # 103830 dated 6/3/04 replaced failed part along with all other tie rods and idler arm. I have in my possession all replaced parts. This incident could have cost my life plus other's while in my vehicle. Ford is ambivalent about the situation. I need your help. This vehicle has never been abused or used for off roading. Operation of steering and vehicle tracking down highway was excellent prior to incident. I am also having the defective part along with questionable parts that were replaced examined by an independent source.

- Rutland, MA, USA

problem #45

May 172004

(reported on)


  • 80,000 miles
While driving on the freeway at approximately 50 to 60mph tie rod on driver's side snapped.

- Dayton, OH, USA

problem #44

Mar 272004

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,000 miles
Tie rod on passenger side of 1998 F150 XLT fell off truck while driving. Luckily, I was traveling at a low speed. Glad that I had not reached the interstate and traveling 65 mph. Hate to see what would have happened to my children, who are 6 and 8, that were in the truck. Or any innocent weekend travelers.

- Newtonsville, OH, USA

problem #43

Dec 272003

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,552 miles
Tie rod failure resulting in damage to vehicle and personal property.

- New Bloomington, OH, USA

problem #42

Nov 012003

F-150 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles
While attempting to back up my vehicle(1998 Ford F-150 4 X 4 6 cyl) I thought I was hung up on something as there was a great deal of resistance in doing so. When I got out to check for obstructions in the roadway, I was horrified to see that both of my front tires were facing each other (toed in). After much ado, and many men stopping to see what my problem was, I learned that the front passenger side tie rod had let go without any warning! with only 60,000 miles on my truck, everyone told me to investigate why this happened because it should not have occurred. It is my understanding that Ford used to have a greased fitting holding the tierods and has switched to a nylon fitting that is non-greasable to save money>.... I can tell you that I was very sick to my stomach to think that my tie rod could have let go while traveling on the highway and I would have been facing the possibility of disasterous consequences. That did not give me a warm and fuzzy feeling. I bought this pick-up because I thought I was safer driving a big vehicle. Little did I know that some small little nylon part was defective and was compromising my ability to steer my vehicle. Would you please tell me how many more people have had this happen to them?? my garage tells me they have seen plenty!

- Kingfield, ME, USA

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