really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
35,367 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.

2004 Ford F-150 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2004 Ford F-150 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #66

Mar 202012

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • 50,000 miles


At 50,000 miles, and earlier, the engine warning light came on, the truck lost all power, and the power steering failed. Upon taking the truck to the dealer, it was determined that the throttle body was defective, and needed replacing. Needless to say, I think that this should not have happened at such a low mileage and should be covered under a recall. Thanks for allowing me to vent. [xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6)

- East Granby, CT, USA

problem #65

Mar 232010


  • 72,000 miles
I purchased my 2004 F150 used from a local dealer, I had a 30 day 3000 mile warranty. I purchased it with 72,000 miles for $15,899. Within 3 days it started a shaking, vibration going up inclines around 45 mph. I contacted dealer and they told me it was the catalytic converters, a day later it was doing it again, I called dealer and they said I was out of my 30 days. Obviously it wasn't the cats. I read all the complaints online about this problem and it sounds like Ford knows there is a problem, then they should be responsible to recall it. This is my work truck and my only transportation.

- Sellersville, PA, USA

problem #64

Oct 242010

F-150 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 63,000 miles
Automatic transmission shift cable is routed too close to the engine causing the cable cover to melt over time allowing the cable to become loose. This prevents the column shifter from transferring the vehicle into park even though the dashboard indicator is in the park position.

- Prichard, WV, USA

problem #63

Oct 142010

F-150 8-cyl

  • 122,000 miles


2004 Ford F150 4.6L V8, yesterday 10/13/10 while driving on freeway traffic the truck would jerk when I let go of the gas coast for a few feet and get back on the gas. Today 10/14/10 the truck would not go past 30mph, it wont shift into the next gear. Transmission has gone bad.

- Dallas, TX, USA

problem #62

Jun 012009

F-150 8-cyl

  • 39,000 miles
2004 Ford F-150 4.6L V8 regular pickup truck, 39,000 miles on odometer - driving 50 mph and the truck starts vibrating horribly like driving over a washboard road. Nothing will cause the vibration to stop, even throwing the vehicle into neutral. Must stop completely, and sometimes put the transmission into reverse for a moment, then put it back into forward drive, to make the problem go away. This happens periodically, about once every couple of weeks. Search on google reveals hundreds of others complaining of the exact same thing with their 2004 F-150 trucks. Most claim it is an expensive differential problem, and caused by some tooling error at the manufacturing plant. Ford has not initiated a recall, and this is an expensive and dangerous problem. The problem just happened again today, September 17, 2010, and I now have 43,000 miles on my truck. It's used for getting groceries. No heavy use, ever. Also, the dozens of complaints from other 2004 Ford F-150 owners said their trucks only had 35,000 to 45,000 miles on them when the problem surfaced.

- St. Louis, MO, USA

problem #61

Jun 132010

F-150 4WD 8-cyl

  • 76,000 miles
Transmission failure in my 2004 F-150 Ford truck at 76,000 miles.

- Williamsburg, VA, USA

problem #60

Dec 312009


  • 65,000 miles


1. driving the truck at about 60 mph and heard a strange winding sound. 2. began to slow down to pull over and the truck seemed to go into a lower gear than warranted by the speed. Pulled truck over and put truck in park then back in drive. Drove in parking lot about 50 feet and it felt like it was in 4WD. Stopped truck and moved the 4WD selection knob to 4wh, and then 4wl and back to 2wd. Attempted to drive truck in parking lot again. Truck seemed to be stuck in 1st gear. Trans fault displayed on lcd display and O/D light was constantly blinking. Read owners manual and it said the truck the truck would go into "limp mode" intended to allow you to drive at a slow speed. While driving in limp mode at about 15-20 mph the transmission seemed to lock up. Pulled truck over again and put it in park. Tried one more time to put it in drive and get home in limp mode, limp mode allowed us to get home. 3. no repair attempt has been made as of yet due to the anticipated high cost.

- Willard, MO, USA

problem #59

Feb 192010


  • 90,168 miles
Transmission failure, driving to work, transmission shift into neutral, again and again, lost of power in traffic while driving, all fluids were normal, will not shift into 3rd gear, slips into neutral at 34 mph, 80,176 miles on od. I drove to Ford dealer in 2nd gear, $450 just to look at, 3- rings +valve body need replacing, total of $2,468 cost of repair. Safety issue == loosing all drive power in traffic, this should have been a recall after seeing all the complaints on this website this is my second big repair with drive train. At 60,000 mile a had to replace the rear differential at $1,600+, I do not tow anything and do not use the truck for work, 4.6L, 2-wheel drive.

- Canton, MA, USA

problem #58

Feb 192010


  • 107,000 miles
I was doing nothing abnormal, simply trying to back up from a store with nothing in bed of truck. The truck shifted into reverse normally then as I took my foot off the brake a slight thud. Truck then revved in reverse as if it was in neutral. No signs leading up to incident, no noises, abnormal behavior, or signs of any kind. Corrections are being looked into two days from now but a rough estimate from 3 transmission shops estimate aprx. $2000 to repair. The old internal parts may be able to be saved for inspection, I will inquire with mechanic.

- Panama City Beach, FL, USA

problem #57

Dec 122009


  • 55,600 miles
Overdrive on my 2004 Ford F150 bit the dust after only 55000 miles. Mechanic could not rebuild the transmission had to be replaced. Cost $2356.78 to repair! of course truck was out of warranty! bob boyd Ford dealership in lancaster, Ohio was less than helpful. Mechanic discovered that the case had large grooves in it where the sealing rings on the output shaft ride.

- Lancaster, OH, USA

problem #56

Dec 142009


  • 47,000 miles


Window failure in my 2004 F150 Ford pickup. Window just falls down & tape will not even hold it up. This is a well known failure by Ford & no recall. Also, my automatic transmission is slipping for the second time. It only has 47K miles with these well known & documented pervasive problems.

- Mount Holly, NC, USA

problem #55

Dec 082009


  • 98,684 miles
Own a 2004 Ford F-150 4 door. I have had to replace three of the fourpower window regulators. All three were still under warranty also, the transmission hesitation/loss of RPM/ while driving more so on the freeway when the RPM's reach about 1200/1500 or loss of RPM on deceleration. The dealer would not look at my tranny. Truck was still under warranty. Now 1 year later my tranny has gone out. I have no warranty and not sure how much it is going to cost to get replaced. I believe this all could have been avoided if the dealer would have just looked at my tranny when I asked while my vehicle was still under warranty. Mileage is approx. 98,684. Less than 99,000.

- Alpine, CA, USA

problem #54

Feb 212007


  • 42,000 miles
I own a 2004 Ford F150 4X4. I had serious transmission problems and had to have the transmission replaced. The first time was 2/07 with 42,000 miles on the vehicle. I have never towed anything with the truck. My mile are commuting miles. The transmission was supposedly replaced. Now here I am 2 years and 60,000 miles later and I am having transmission problems again. After investigating this problem, it appears that this is an ongoing problem with Ford. Ford needs to step up and take care of their customers before someone is seriously injured or killed.

- Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, USA

problem #53

Nov 042009


  • 33,800 miles
2004 F-150, 4X4, 4.6L engine. Transmission keeps slipping. The vehicle only has 33,800 miles on it, but the time has expired for the factory warranty. This occurs approximately every fifteen miles or so. It started one time about three months ago and quickly went to the Ford shop for repair. They "fixed it" they said, but about five hundred miles later, you guessed it, it started again. I have read a ton of forums specifically about this happening to hundreds of other vehicle owners of the same make and model. Please assist with getting this problem fixed and some help is holding them responsible. The same dealership that fixed the problem (lol) stated that they fixed it and that they are not responsible for fixing it again, despite it only being three months ago. Please help.

- Morganton, NC, USA

problem #52

Aug 112009


  • 65,198 miles
My overdrive gear got wiped out. While driving the truck I got up to 30 mph and the engine started to rev up real bad and would not move. The truck has 65,000 miles on it and was not beaten on at all. Just one month past the extended warranty and Ford won't honor the warranty or extend it. From what I am reading this happens a lot to the 2004S. The next vehicle won't be a Ford.. I suggest that no one buys a Ford truck as they will have the same problem. My fathers 2006 had the transmission go out at 55000 miles. This is obviously a problem that Ford needs to own up to.

- Crystal, MN, USA

problem #51

Jun 292009


  • 69,700 miles
On June 29, 2009 while driving the vehicle on a busy city street the automatic transmission suddenly and without warning appeared to shift into neutral. There was no noise or any indication of the catastrophic failure that had occurred. The engine revved with no response from the transmission. While trying to avoid traffic as the vehicle slowed I attempted to clear traffic lanes as safely as possible. The transmission was shifted down into second gear as I slowed to see if this had any effect on the transmission. The vehicle immediately responded and I pulled out of traffic lanes. I immediately checked the fluid level and it was in standard operating range. I then disengaged the overdrive of the transmission and the vehicle was driven home. An inspection of the vehicle found the overdrive clutch pack failed. This vehicle is well maintained, does not tow anything and is driven to and from work, 30 miles each way. The repair is $2500 for a 5 year old vehicle with 69,700 miles. I believe this standard equipment from Ford was not designed to perform at an adequate performance level as expected from a consumer. The consumers who purchase new Ford vehicles should be able to expect the product to last longer than the payments one makes on the new vehicle!

- Mira Loma, CA, USA

problem #50

Jan 082009


  • 58,914 miles
I own a 2004 Ford F-150 four door extended cab pick up. I have used it as a recreational vehicle and it only has 58,914 miles and the transmission has broken. I took the truck to the shop and the mechanic stated that there was no reason the trucks transmission should have this issue. He stated that unfortunately it has been his experience that this particular year Ford F150 has a history of poor transmission performance due to its very thin transmission gears. He stated the truck was in very good condition, I had proof of my maintenance schedule.

- Torrance, CA, USA

problem #49

Feb 052009


  • 112,800 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford F-150. While driving approximately 40 mph on normal road conditions, the overdrive switch was activated and the transmission slipped between gears. When the overdrive was deactivated, the vehicle operated normally. There were no warning indicators illuminated on the instrument panel. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer for diagnostic testing and they stated that the failure was related to the computerized system. The vehicle has not been repaired. The VIN was unknown. The failure and current mileages were 112,800.

- Memphis, TN, USA

problem #48

Jun 012005


  • 46,000 miles
My 2004 Ford 150 heritage pick-up has serious transmission slippage- it also wont go into reverse at times- I mentioned this at the Ford deal while under warranty, and they nothing was wrong with the truck- the transmission starting banging into when 1st put into D- and now has severe slippage in it- the list ed incident date below- is when I 1st started to notice erratic transmission behavior.

- Greensburg, PA, USA

problem #47

Nov 212008


  • 55,000 miles
Transmission went bad after warranty.

- Teaneck, NJ, USA

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