really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
137,893 miles
Total Complaints:
34 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace the rear axle (19 reports)
  2. not sure (14 reports)
  3. class action lawsuit against Ford motor company (1 reports)
1999 Ford Windstar drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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1999 Ford Windstar Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #14

Jan 292010

Windstar Cloth 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles


traveled 230 mi.on interstate at speed between 66&75mph,6 adults and luggage.got to motel and unloaded van.went shopping and was parking in store lot when axle broke.could not believe this.if this would have happened on the road some body would have been killed.i worked in Ford&Lincoln mercury dealers for38years.all i can say is the lord was with us. ford should do something before somebody gets killed because this is a safety issue.

- , Canton, OH, USA

problem #13

Jan 112010

Windstar LX 3.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles

I noticed a clunking noise in the right rear of the van when making a right turn. Then the steering wheel was turned to the right when going straight. Finally when I pulled into my driveway I heard a loud clunk. Upon looking under the rear of the van I could not beleive what I saw. The rear axle was cracked all around about 1.5 ft inside of the rear left wheel. I called my mechanic and he never heard of such a thing happening. Then I went right to GOOGLE and found this site where others have experienced the same failure. I called the local ford dealer and they said that they have changed a few axles over the years and that the part is $585 and around $550 labor. I will NEVER buy another Ford again. I bought this van new in 2000 and have never abused it. Even if someone gets killed in an accident Ford won't recall this one because of the cost.


- , Reading, PA, USA

problem #12

Jan 012010

Windstar SEL 3.2L?

  • Automatic transmission
  • 165,000 miles

WOW! How does a recall get initiated because my rear axel is broken in half. Noticed it on my way home from work, best way to describe it.....it felt like I was driving on a sheet of ice! I am going to try to get Ford to fix this. I have always been very gentle with my Ford. Right now, I have a transmission light on, which apparently seems to be another common problem with Windstars, but I am prepared to fight this issue with everything I have. I should NOT have to pay for this and neither should you! It takes a lot of force to break an axle. My vehicle has never been abused or wrecked. This is a pure factory issue and I'll be damned if it's gonna come out of my pocket!

- , Zanesville, OH, US

problem #11

Apr 302009

Windstar 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles


Cannot believe that a business as large as ford motor company could have a continuous problem like this and never have had a recall on the piece of sh*t, I will never ever buy another ford again and will tell everyone I know not to buy Ford either/ very disappointed, FORD IS JUNK.

- , Shirleysburg, PA, USA

problem #10

Dec 202009

Windstar LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 158,647 miles

click to see larger images

rear axle broke in half rear axle broke in half rear axle broke in half rear axle broke in half rear axle broke in half rear axle broke in half

I can't believe this is even a common failure! I have seen many, many instances on Google from 1996 on with this problem. Really, an axle assembly rusting and failing? I was pulling out of the alley to go Christmas shopping and it broke, thought it was a flat, nope thought the studs broke, nope looked under the rear of the van because that was all that was left and was horrified. My wife didn't believe me when I stood up and told her, I made her look. It was the next day that shock wore off and reality set in, the day before it broke we drove to my companies Christmas party 85 miles round trip half that at highway speeds. WOW, praise God I was pulling out of the alley and parked it in front of the house.

Update from Jan 4, 2010: Turns out my tires were ok, and the total cost was $765.00. It would have been more without my AAA!! I am going to take pictures and prsue Ford for the cost.

Update from Jan 29, 2011: Ford did come back with a recall and I got reimbursed.

- , Eaton, OH, USA

problem #9

Dec 282009

Windstar LX 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 185,000 miles

Our van was fish tailing all over the road. It felt like we were driving on ice. I told my wife the steel belts must have broken in the passenger rear tire. The next day, when driving to the tire store, every turn we could hear what sounded like metal grinding. Got to the store to have the tire changed. We were shown how the rear axle was almost completely broken in half. Looking at the axle from the rear of the van, the break was just to the right of center. Closer to the passenger side back tire. We feel this should be a Ford recall. Especially since our other vehicle is also a Ford Windstar. This axle break caused the tire to rub against the inside of the wheel well.

- , Toledo, OH, USA

problem #8

Nov 152009

Windstar SEL 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles


i took my van to a ford dealership to make sure it was safe to drive to Mexico and sure enough when i got to mexico a week later my rear axle broke in half what the heck

- , Kendallville, IN, USA

problem #7

Nov 162009

Windstar SEL 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

my wife was driving the van on her way home at 55 mph when she and my 3 kids almost flip because the rear axle broke in half i think ford needs to do something about it before somebody get killed then is going to be too late.

- , Kendallville, IN, USA

problem #6

Jul 172009

Windstar SEL 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 144,000 miles

click to see larger images

rear axle broke in half

I was driving on the highway, 60MPH and I felt like I was hydroplaning, as it just began to rain. I slowed down to 45 MPH and still was feeling like I was loosing control of the vehicle. As I slowed down to 20MPH, it got worse, almost hitting the car next to me. I pulled off the road, as I thought I had a flat tire. Left rear tire was crooked and I then discovered the axle was broken. This should be a recall, as it's a severe safety issue.

- , Greensburg, PA, USA

problem #5

May 222009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

This Memorial Day weekend I was traveling about 35 miles to my moms house to have a cookout. First i stopped at Krogers to pick up some supplies for the cookout, on leaving Krogers and entering the interstate I started to hear a squealing sound when I turned the wheel to the right...mind you I had four children in the car with me! The sound seemed to depend on the speed I was going. On the Interstate I was traveling at 70 (the speed limit in WV on I-77) the instant we got off the interstate and hit Route 2 I stopped at an exxon...thinking I would be able to see the problem. Checked the air pressure in the tires, and the rear tire on the passenger side was a little low...put some air in the tire thinking that this was the culprit of the sound and continued on. After a 22 miles journey towards my mothers home the sound proceeded to continue...the best way to describe the sound is it sounded like you were peeling out...squealing tires...every time you turned the wheel to the right. I pulled into the first service station and asked the kid working there to check my power steering fluid...he did...it was fine. He said he didn't have a license therefore could not drive the van on the road but he did take it for a spin around the parking lot and the van made no noise. He said the guy who would be able to help me wouldn't be back for another hour. I told him I would take the kids to my moms and return for the other guy to check it out. So I drove on some 10 miles...up a narrow...winding...dangerous road...thinking that maybe a belt was squealing or something else minor was to blame...I took it slow (THANK GOD) as I made it almost there and headed up a small incline in the road the van started floating across the road and my brakes were failing and then there was a BOOM...everyone piled out to see our back tires at an incline tops pointing under the van...I just started crying...the thoughts of what ifs start pouring in...I had been traveling at 70 miles per hour with PRECIOUS cargo on board...now at this point...I am crying...the van is in the middle of the road...completely disabled...I have no cell phone service...four kids...it is 85 degrees...and a van full of food...LUCKILY a couple of men from a nearby house came to my assistance and let me use the phone to call my mom and my husband...but because it is Memorial Day weekend...getting anyone to actually look at the van has been a nightmare...I do carry AAA...but guess what...after two years of faithfully paying my dues to them...when I finally got to my moms house and called them...they tell me that the 70 some dollars I paid for membership entitles me to a free tow for three FREAKIN miles. every mile after that is 3.50...WHO BREAKS DOWN 3 MILES FROM HOME! Nobody!!!!!!! This who experience has been a TOTAL PAIN IN THE ARSE...right now as I type this my husband and his brother have my van on a flatbed trailer in route to drop off at the mechanic...We were supposed to be out on a friends boat cooking out and enjoying the day...but I will take the huge pain in the arse over what could have happened ANYDAY...I feel lucky to be sitting here complaining about this incident...

In closing this is what I have to say

Hey FORD...why would someone need a mini van? So they can drive around kids! So don't ya think it would be morally RIGHT to maybe make a vehicle that isn't a DEATH TRAP for those kids and their parents...I mean come on...I know you all do all this research to figure out who to market these things for...like those nifty cup holders made into the back of the seats so you can flip them down and have a nice little picnic when traveling...your research department spent alot of money to find out I would like those cupholders...hey maybe get some of those geniuses over there in marketing research to understand that the CORE safety of the kids riding in the van is MORE important than if they have a stupid indent to keep their cups from spilling...from what I see here looking on the net it looks like you guys have a potentially DEADLY defect in the design...my van has never been wrecked...I do all the required maintenance on schedule...and this axle thing...had little prior warning...its going to kill someone someday...maybe even an entire family or more if the vehicle they are traveling in causes other accidents to occur...

So DO SOMETHING...set yourself apart from all these corporate A*HOLES that think you can tabulate a pricetag to the cost of a human life...recall this thing...MAKE IT RIGHT before the person paying the price isn't you...but maybe some family just traveling to Grandma's house...not aware they are sitting on a ticking time bomb...how would you all feel if it was your baby who had to die to start the motions of a recall to happen...you don't like the thought of that...neither do we!!!!!!!!!!!!I am SO SICK of "Corporate America's Bullsht"

- , Parkersburg, WV, USA

problem #4

Mar 142009

Windstar LX 3.8L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,100 miles


My wife let me know our 1999 Ford Winstar LX felt loose in the rear end. I took it for a ride and agreed it felt loose. I made sure the lug nuts were tight and we drove it to a meeting. When we got home she told me to look at the driver's side rear tire and that it looked like it was leaning in. I removed the tire and saw no problems and put it back on and it appeared to have straightened out. I took it around the block and when I pulled back in, it was leaning again. I looked underneath and found the rear axle was cracked 3/4 of the way through. We could have been killed driving around it like that. Our van only has 70,100 miles on it. I called my dealer service center and they claimed they were amazed a rear axle would crack like that and have never seen it, and oh, by the way, it will take $1,500 to repair it. I still haven't gotten it fixed. I've seen other complaints now about the same thing when researching it but no recall. It's the last Ford I'll ever buy.

- , Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #3

Mar 112009

Windstar 100000 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

Incredible !,,I took my the van for a pad change to the shop and I let him know about this rare noise that I was hearing for about a week on the back wheels,, I ask him to check for that after he change the front pads.. I got the call back asking me to came over to see about the noise I have aks to look for ...I could not believe my eyes the back wheel axle was broken, almost in half, left & middle sections... My drives the van every day and he was the first that notice the noises ,, three days a week she car pulls with other families kids from school.. I can not image the tragedy that it could have happened if the rear axle brokes in the highway.. Guys from Ford , Designers, Mechanical / Automotive Eng, this is a mayor problem that should investigate, get to the root cause & take the proper action on,,,,is is a family car ,,, I really hope you act quick before people, families ge kill.....I wondering if I have this replaced,,, how long it will take to broke again ? will I have a change to notice before or it will be to late ?? I can not even sell it knowing about this,, I better give it for free to a Ford executive family...

- , Nogales, Sonora, Mexico

problem #2

Mar 062009


  • Manual transmission
  • 122,724 miles

I went to have my Fuel injection cleaned ,told my friend who works there about it felt like the front tires were trying to grip the road .he took it for a drive and he came back put it on the left and found the rear axle cracked I noticed this going over fifty FORD NEEDS TO DO SOMETHING I DRIVE MY KIDS EVERYDAY I didn't want the daMM WINDSTAR 10 YRS AGO but my husband at the time thought good family car. should have giving him the van


problem #1

May 132008

Windstar LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 135,000 miles

click to see larger images

rear axle broke in half rear axle broke in half

Doing 50 in the 93 southbound tunnel under Boston the vehicle started to shudder and I tried to pull to side of road (there is none) and exit vehicle in a tunnel on the wrong side of a blind curve. Ford told me to pound sand. Will never buy another ford again.

- , Boston, MA, USA

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