Notes: The Freestar was introduced in 2004, but it was essentially just a rebranded Windstar. While there was a redesign of the interior and exterior, the Freestar still inherited some of the design flaws of its predecessor.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
98,177 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 Freestar engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2004 Ford Freestar:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2004 Ford Freestar Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #33

Nov 012013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 90,000 miles


In November of 2013, our 2004 Ford Freestar quit working. Yes, we had the torque converter recalled and put on back when they had that recall. November was the first time we had this happen to our car. It was raining, and our car would not go into gear, it quit working. What made this bad is that it was on the freeway! my husband put it into neutral, but we still did not have steering capabilities and managed to get us over to the shoulder. We had to be towed to a dealership. The dealership then stated that many people were having the same issue with the electronics getting wet, so he dried it, then let it set for a couple days and caulked it. We thought that would end those problems. Not. (note: This had cost us 450.00) then less than 2 months, the same exact thing happens, only this time we are stuck in a shopping center and could not get our car into gear again. We took it back to the dealership to which they replied that we needed a new electric module. How much" $1500!!! in less than 2 months, we spent almost 2,000.00! this was done in February. Here it is now April and guess what" the same exact problem is taking place again!! we are not alone, there are many people facing the same problems we have had, look around at the boards online and you will see that everyone has the same issues!! some investigations need to be opened or reopened as this is not resolved and lawsuits will be filed if someone gets hurt.

- Gig Harbor, WA, USA

problem #32

Dec 192013


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford Freestar. The contact was driving 40 mph when the vehicle suddenly stalled. The vehicle was restarted and performed normally. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer or an independent mechanic for inspection. The manufacturer was made aware of the issue. The approximate failure mileage was 80,000.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #31

Dec 052011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 15,000 miles
Purchased used vehicle from marshall used cars in sacramento, ca, where reside currently. Purchased 05/2011, paid full no loan at time of purchase. Purchased add. Ext. Warranty which was 6months. From the dos til present date; I have paid, and was mislead in all the insurance covering major defects, owner(me) had came out of pocket paying for service to fix warranty parts. Now this is the current and serious issue. I am disabled, I have a disable child. My vehicle was reported under VIN to Ford corporate to notate for service to be check and worked on at local Ford dealer. Complained about multiple (4) issues. Dealership mislead me, and did not perform work. Only work they did was replace 1 recall 10/12. After recall service I (owner) recall manufac. Made claim, again and then went to dealer. I was turned away...and told to do normal maintenance before putting a service claim in. This is a problem. I am not ignorant to the anatomy of a vehicle. I am very literate on understanding vehicle operations as well as maintaining maintenance. I can say this because I believe I should be aware of every issue so I wont have a disabled vehicle. Vehicle mileage applied from the date recall replaced 5800 within the time til I made another claim in Oct 2013. Took vehicle in, told to check everything. Did. Brought vehicle back and vehicle was in service dept for week which rolled over to Nov 1, 2013. Vehicle was dx and found to be the same thing I made a claim about. Vehicle has a defected recall part. Part was not replaced. And owner is now left with a defect recall part, plus more damage on other parts related to torque converter, fuel line, 3rd bench, front R-wheel hub. I have multiple health appts to maintain for me and my child's disability. My children need to get to school, and I missed legal appt dates from court.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #30

Nov 162013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 127,102 miles


Driving South on I 75, returning from a week's vacation, in medium Saturday traffic the car started to act up. Lights, warning lights, gauges, even the temperature and compass started flashing and going on and off. There was an exit a mile ahead when the engine died, right in front of a semi. I had to swerve to the side of the road to narrowly avoid an accident. The car would not start after that. I had to arrange a tow and was left stranded for five days. The Ford dealer up North could not get the part for three weeks. Now it's at a Ford dealer here, by detroit, for over a week. They said it will cost over one thousand dollars to replace the PCM. Looking on line I see all the complaints and repairs reported about this car, and you are doing nothing"? after seeing the PCM and the repairs to fix the problem you have to wonder why the brain of the car is in a spot where it can get wet, and why there are holes in the top to let water in? how many problems, accidents, or deaths do there have to be to start a recall???"

- Warren, MI, USA

problem #29

Nov 052013


  • 100,500 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford Freestar. The contact stated that while driving 10 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 100,500.

- Nahant, MA, USA

problem #28

Apr 052013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 170,000 miles
Multiple times since April 2013 this vehicle has started stalling at stop signs and traffic lights, when shifting gears the vehicle's gas would have to be slightly accelerated first and then it would move in its gear with force. Starting in July all the vehicle's power would cut off at traffic lights and stop signs and would have to be restarted. After receiving notice of the 2013 recall for the torque converter and taking it to a Ford dealership, it was then told by a dealership service rep that the transmission would need to be replaced due to excessive fluids from the torque converter affecting the transmission and damaging it. This has taken place Sept. 2013.

- Lithonia, GA, USA

problem #27

Aug 012013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 124,000 miles


Intermittently, when I am idling in drive (like at a light) with my foot on the brake, the van will begin to surge and lurch forward, sometimes violently. Only pressing hard on the brake will keep it from moving forward and causing a crash. Sometimes happens in reverse also. The tachometer will surge up to higher rpms and back down as it lurches. Sometimes, if it is violent enough, the battery light will flash off and on as if the vehicle is about to stall. Seems very dangerous as it could cause an accident with a nearby vehicle.

- Rochester Hills, MI, USA

problem #26

Aug 112013


  • 52,490 miles
Van started running poorly suddenly, then would not run at all. After shutting down and allowing cool down time, restarted van and it would not go into gear. Ran well in park or neutral, but shifting into any gear would "clunk" and the engine would immediately quit. After 5 days of troubleshooting, traced trouble to engine PCM after reading in on-line forums about it. Found PCM wet and pins on PCM and contacts on wire harness corroded and green due to water leaking past cowl-to-body seal. The PCM connector is not sealed, so if water does drip on it, it is dripping directly onto back side of the contacts and Ford did release a tsb about this issue but not a recall. Tsb says to remove some plugs from body (my van is severely rusted in one of those 2 spots), seal around clips that hold plastic cowl to body with silicone sealant and add additional weather stripping on the outer edges of cowl to try to prevent water. I had to replace my PCM. Had my wife been on the highway when this happened, there would have most certainly been an accident or injury.

- Clifton, NJ, USA

problem #25

Aug 162010

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
Stop running sometime would start, then wouldn't start, took to a shop they said look at it been submerged or under water, at eclt plug where, wet with water, said it wood need new wiring harness, possible computer cost of $1200-1500 part and then there in kenai to fixer if I want to do this...I bought this used here came up from the South, Arizona, done car fax all good.

- Kenai, AK, USA

problem #24

Jul 242013


  • 125,600 miles
Was driving about 35 miles and hour when I turned and went up a slight incline...engine sputtered a bit then I turned into parking lot, heard a loud noise like engine revving up and then it just died. Lost all control of vehicle and luckily coasted to a spot where no cars were. I let it sit for a moment, started back up and it was revving up again and RPM's were going up drastically. Tried to put in reverse and it would not go, shifted to park again and it revved back up. Turned off let sit again...then started, was able to reverse but with loud noise and revving of RPM's. drive a small amount and it died again and would not start back. Had PCM replaced about one year ago. Not sure of problem. Still waiting to get it towed.

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #23

May 262013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 130,000 miles


The transmission is slipping in and out and very sluggish and no power, backfiring and smells very strong of gas fumes. Has been going on for a few weeks. I was driving on the highway and it slipped out of drive and lost power. I had to slow myself down at a pace to turn the van into a safe area off the highway I was traveling at the speed of 60..very scary...the van would not move. I had the van towed by a friend at the cost of $65 (he saved me a lot of money ) which was not offered back to me from the dealership.... I didn't know abt the recall or the PCM problem until I was looking for info on ytube..I called my dealer where I had bought the van( and it is paid for) when I talked with an advisor he said for me to have it towed to the dealership and they would look at it. I refused to pay for the tow (they did do that at least) he called me and said that the torque converter was under a recall and they would replace that part...3 days later I went to pick the van up and it still wasn't driving right. Still loosing power and gas smell and it felt as if the transmission was slipping still. It was a Saturday and the lady helping me knew nothing couldn't even find my paperwork and had to call the advisor. She said to call him back on Monday so needless to say I tried to drive the van and it just wasn't drivable so I parked it.. was afraid it might do more damage if I didn't. on Monday I called and spoke to the advisor and he informed me that they only did the recall part as I had requested to be done. He also said the tech told him that the van needed a lot of work. I in return ask why they didn't check out all of the problems and his answer was we did the recall and that's all we can do unless I wanted to pay $100 for a needless to say my van sits until I can pay or Ford does something to make this right. The ball is N your park Ford.

- Newport, NC, USA

problem #22

Dec 282009

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 64,858 miles
Purchased car in Nov 08. In Dec 09 had transmission rebuilt (remanufactured by Ford) in June of 2013 needs transmission again!! went in to Ford dealership and asked for all paperwork. Found out this will be the 4th total transmission in the life of my very well maintained car! warranty history stated Nov 07 overhauled transmission 43085 mi Dec 09 rebuilt remanufactured transmission 64858 mi June 2013 torque converter recall done 88658 mi dealership called Ford recall line, did not fix neutralizing problem with transmission. Ford stated it must be an internal transmission problem not covered by recall. So I called Ford Motor Company and they will not do anything!!!!!! recall the unsafe bad transmissions made by Ford Motor Company!!

- Marlborough, MA, USA

problem #21

Apr 112013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
While driving my son to school, vehicle stalled at 45 mph and engine died. Got vehicle started again, died again, managed to get vehicle back home. This issue has been happening intermittently ever since with no warning engine will die while driving vehicle. I have been advised by a mechanic that this is due to the PCM getting wet repeatedly. After researching issue on-line, this appears to be a design issue that Ford should address immediately before it results in a fatality.

- Mundelein, IL, USA

problem #20

Dec 102012

Freestar 6-cyl

  • miles
The contact owns a 2004 Ford Freestar. The contact stated that the check engine warning lamp illuminated. The contact mentioned that the vehicle failed to start. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that water was seeping into the connector and causing a shortage however, the technician was unable to provide a remedy. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was unknown and the current mileage was 150,000.

- Elwood, IN, USA

problem #19

Sep 032012

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
Had the recall work done on the torque converter end of August beginning of September 2012, upon return of vehicle have had nothing but problems. Last Thursday April 4 the vehicle suddenly lost power while going through an intersection. Friday did the same thing 3 times in less than 20 minutes of driving. Replaced alternator, belt tensioner and belt. Mechanic asked what it did, then said it might be the torque converter. He checked power steering, and water pump they are fine. Not sure how a part less than year old could go bad. When my vehicle went in for recall was perfectly fine, since it's return is has been running horrible and nothing seems to really fix it.

- Aurora, IL, USA

problem #18

Mar 272013


  • 124,328 miles
I was sitting at my son's bus stop this morning waiting on the bus. I had the van running cause it was cold...but I had it park. Then all of a sudden...all the lights on the dash board came on...the engine shut off and then started back up. This happened about 6 months ago while I was driving. It was really strange. Back in Aug. Of torque converter went out...thought it was my transmission. No warning at all that anything was wrong except for it missing a little. Engine light never came on. Got torque converter replaced due to a recall in Jan. Of 2012; about 6 months starting missing alittle again. Without the engine light coming on...nobody can tell me what the issue is. Any ideas what this may be"?"

- Newport News, VA, USA

problem #17

Mar 182013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
This is the fourth time power train control module has gone out during rain event. This time was on a highway traveling at 45mph with passengers. The result was intermittent engine shutdown, loss of steering, and forward motion. This module has been replaced 3 other times. Two times in 2011, and two months ago in 2013.

- Wilmington, DE, USA

problem #16

Dec 262012

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 153,500 miles
Our 2004 Ford Freestar stalled, and then surged after accelerating from a stop. The next day the check engine light came on. We took it to a local Ford dealer, capital city Ford in indianapolis, who in indicated the code was for a fuel pump problem. We paid over $800 to have the fuel pump replaced on December 27th. In late February the van began to stall and surge again. We suspected the same problem. It continued to do this off and on for the next two weeks and on March 8th the check engine light came on again. We took it back to the same Ford dealer and they said the initial code was for the same error, but when another mechanic/technician checked the code it came up with a different problem. We were advised that the there was "moisture" getting into the PCM causing the problem and not only was it causing the engine to stall, but was giving wrong error codes. The replacement of the PCM was estimated to be a +$1,000 cost. We were advised that it "seemed to be" a design flaw in the location of the PCM in that it is in line with the waterflow from the windshield. After much research on the internet on this issue, it appears it is a long-standing issue with many owners of this vehicle and even with replacement of the PCM the problem will happen again due to the design flaw. The safety risk related to engine stalls due to the failure of the PCM is unacceptable. The failure of the dealership to identify this well-known problem and charge us for a repair (fuel pump) that was unnecessary is unconscionable.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #15

Feb 202013


  • miles
Cpsc#I1320440. 2004 Ford Freestar. Consumer stated after driving the car in the rain, a few days afterwards the vehicle spurts and shakes violently. The consumer also stated the check engine light would come on and flash. The vehicle also jumped when accelerating and vibrated while at a stop. The consumer stated as soon as she drove the vehicle in the rain, the problem started again. The vehicle then stalled while in park.

- Waldorf, MD, USA

problem #14

Jan 202013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 154,000 miles
2004 Ford Freestar ses I changed the rear brakes on 1/20/2013 noticed the left rear wheel was rusting out. Today 2/24/2013 went to install a car sear & noticed the bench seat in the back was rocking slightly. The anchor point on the left rear is rusted out and moving. Upon inspection I noticed that I can see down to the ground where the anchor point has rusted out. I have had to replace numerous parts on this van over the last two years. To date I have replaced: 3 ignition coils, (this is the main problem whenever heavy rain or snow has happened and I start to throw misfire codes), 3 camshaft position sensors, 2 driver side window controls & motors, (the window doesn't want to work half the time so we leave it cracked open with the rain guards), an egr valve, and a clockspring. I have never had so many problems with this vehicle in such a short amount of time.

- Prairie Village, KS, USA

Read the next 13 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?