really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
96,732 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.

2002 Ford Windstar brakes problems

brakes problem

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2002 Ford Windstar Owner Comments

problem #20

Jun 162011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 90,000 miles


Check traction control appears on the digital readout. The ABS, brake and trac off warning lights come on at the same time. Turning off vehicle resets all the warning lights temporarily. More frequent during warm weather, but occurs year round. Very concerning to me as ABS and traction control are disabled when lights come on.

- Il, IL, USA

problem #19

Apr 192011

Windstar 5-cyl

  • 114,464 miles
On April 16th I took my Ford Windstar in for repairs and two Ford recalls. After returning my car I noticed almost immediately the ABS light turned on as well as the brake light. I was concerned and asked the service department to check this. The service manager told me that I needed to have the ABS module replaced which is a cost of approximately $700. I cannot afford to pay this but the car is not running safe since this happened. It feels like it slips when I brake and it's been raining a lot here in Florida so I'm very concerned. I think it is Ford's responsibility to replace the ABS module at no cost to the consumer.

- Fl, FL, USA

problem #18

Dec 162010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 167,000 miles
Ford Windstar van, which was already subject to rear axle recall, and the rear axle did break on it in may, and was replaced and I received reimbursement for the replacement from Ford. However, another incident happened in December. My 21 year old son was in an accident driving this van on Thursday, Dec. 16. the van lost traction and pulled to the right, pulling him into a ditch and down a steep embankment. The front of the van was ripped off, tires slashed, van almost flipped over, and the airbags never deployed. He hit a dirt embankment head on going about 30-35 mph. The roads were icy that day, and he was on a curve... the van would not respond to steering to correct the direction the van was going. I experienced something similar last winter; the van seemed to pull to the right, going off the road without allowing the driver to control the vehicle. However, when I went off the road, it was in a shallow ditch and it caused no damage to the van. My son was not as fortunate, and he could have been severely injured. I feel that this may have something to do with the current investigation into the front suspension... the van could not be controlled, and pulled to the right. Our insurance co. Is taking care of this, and I don't know the current location of the van. It is totaled, I know that. I asked state farm to check out the front suspension for weakness or rust, but don't know if they'll know what to look for, especially since the front is so damaged from the wreck that the tires are turned sideways, and I believe the front axle is broken. Please send someone to look at my van, and see what caused this wreck; my son could have been killed. Thank you for the work you've done so far.... your organization is so valuable to consumers.

- Denton, NC, USA

problem #17

Sep 272010


  • 110,000 miles


I am having problems with my Ford 2002 Windstar antilock brakes and traction control system resulting in intermittent shutoff of the system and an increase in braking distance. The problems are increased in higher temperatures.

- Beachwood, OH, USA

problem #16

Mar 282007

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 67,000 miles
I own a 2002 Ford Windstar that has some sort of short and randomly sets off the traction control, emergency brake, and ABS lights. The led display always says, "check traction control". my mechanic has been unable to trace down the root of the cause. After reading a number of blogs/discussion boards, I have learned that this is a recurring problem with 99-03 Windstar.

- Lenexa, KS, USA

problem #15

Aug 162010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • miles
My ABS light is on in my minivan. The dealership wants me to change the ABS ECM which is not cheap, however after doing some research I see this is a major issue with these model Ford Windstar, 1999-2003, see www.fordwindstarrecall.info. I drive with my grandson in the van on a daily basis and the fact that I live in Massachusetts, I rely on the ABS system to work properly in the winter time due to our harsh climates. Please do what is right and issue a recall for this defective part and help ensure the safety of myself and my family. If this was simply a maintenance item, such as brakes or oil changes, I would be completely understanding, but this is a major system on this vehicle and now I am scared to drive this in the winter time during any ice or snow as the braking system will not work properly. Thank you for your help in resolving this matter as promptly as possible and helping ensure the safety and well being of myself and my family.

- Methuen, MA, USA

problem #14

Aug 292010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 56,000 miles


I have a 2002 Ford Windstar mini van. At 56, xxx miles I had to replace the transmission. About 6 month after that I started experiencing a blizzard of lights on my dash indicating the following alerts for ABS/brakes, trac off & check traction control. This light blizzard appears each time I drive my van for a short period of time and remains on the dash until I stop the van and restart. Went to the transmission shop and they said it was not related to the tranny replacement. Took the van in to Ford dealership for the 2009 recall jumper and they said the ABS/traction control was not related to the leaking brake cylinder so they wouldn't fix it. A short time ago I started getting a check engine light too. Tried to go thru deq but the van failed emissions test. Went to a mechanic and he couldn't locate the problem but the check engine light is off so I went to deq and passed but I still an having a problem with the original light blizzard (ABS/tc). I had not experienced any problems with the braking system to date but I haven't had to slam them either. Next week it's off to the Ford dealership since no one else can determine a problem resolution. I've searched this problem on the internet and there seems to be quite a few Windstar/GM products with similar problems. It really points back to a poor quality product!

- Portland, OR, USA

problem #13

Jul 202010


  • 112,400 miles
Sudden increase in braking distance. This happens intermittently but always seems to happen when ABS, traction control, and brake light come on. Occasional slight smell of burning usually on hotter days. Longer braking distance has almost cause me to rear-end a car and/or stop for a pedestrian in a cross-walk. Only because I always leave plenty of distance away from cars in front of me and watch closely for pedestrians has an accident been avoided. I have not had the problem repaired because our Ford dealership told me it would cost $800 just for ABS electronic control unit and 8 hours(@$125/hr) to install the new unit. Also, I was told a new speed control unit would need to be replaced. I am simply not in a financial decision to get these items fix. I am concerned that these issues may result in an accident or a fire or both.

- Petaluma, CA, USA

problem #12

Mar 012010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
2002 Ford Windstar - had recall from Oct 2009 (vehicle speed control) done on vehicle. Sometime the car will start and no issues appear in the driver instrument gauges other times the issue will appear at startup. If it is fine at startup, sometimes while driving (sometimes over bumps, sometimes just over time), the problem will appear. The problem is that the "brake", "ABS", and "trac control" lights turn on, indicating a problem with the car's braking system. Car still brakes fine under normal conditions, but it appears that the ABS system and traction control systems stop functioning resulting in the loss of those critical safety systems. Shutting the car off and restarting resets the system and everything is fine until it happens again. Problem is getting more regular, almost occurring every time we drive the car.

- Orland Park, IL, USA

problem #11

Jun 272010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 160,000 miles
2002 Windstar received recall to fix fire problem but now I'm having issues. ABS/brake/traction control warning lights on and message board says check trac control. Online forums I've read seems to suggest this is an ongoing problem with a defective E.C.M. it was sporadic at first, but now a constant occurrence. Please have fomoco deal with this quality defect so I do not have to fork out any money I do not have to spend.

- Toledo, OH, USA

problem #10

Jun 232010


  • 109,770 miles


I have a 2002 Ford Windstar minivan. I took the van to the local dealership to have my traction control checked because the lights(ABS, brakes, trac off) on the dash come on and stay on. This vehicle does not have any current recall orders and the dealership confirmed that. I had them check my van to find out why the lights are staying on. This is what I was told, they said that my hydraulic control unit (hcu)is leaking fluid onto my ECU (ABS control module computer) shorting the system out. They told me the way to fix this problem is to replace the ECU(ABS control module computer) which cost $2000. How is replacing the computer going to fix the leak? according to records the recall 09S09 (scds) was repaired on this vehicle. This concerns me because their is still fluid(brake) leaking onto a electronic component which poses as a fire hazard. According to complaints I have read this is a common concern for many other Windstar owners. The ABS issues are directly related to the leaking scds(recall 09S09). I am going to personally check the leak to verify the proximity of the location of the leak to the scds. I feel this may be a issue Ford has to address. Please note I have sent a memo to them first, and I hope to receive a response. I will not hold my breath though.

- Fayetteville, OH, USA

problem #9

Jun 152010


  • 132,512 miles
I was driving home from work when the low brake fluid light came on. I was headed to pull over when the dashboard went crazy. Said that the ABS was bad, right brake light needed to be checked, traction control error, check transmission, mileage was gone only --------- listed, A/C stopped working, said fuel data computer error, speedometer was out. I am taking it to Ford tomorrow to have the vehicle speed control replace and I believe this is what is causing this problem. The brake fluid may be leaking on everything because I did small a burning smell.

- Norfolk, VA, USA

problem #8

Oct 062009


  • 115,000 miles
2002 blue Ford Windstar; anti-lock brake system failure led to almost accident as I slammed on the brakes and the ABS did not engage. Took to mechanic, reported code C1185; defective ABS control module; this is close to $1000 repair.

- Lexington, KY, USA

problem #7

Sep 192009


  • 71,321 miles
ABS failure Windstar 2002 code C1185. It seems to be a common problem that Ford is not doing anything about. I took my van to a dealer im having the ABS module replace.

- Bronx, Ny, NY, USA

problem #6

May 012009


  • 90,500 miles
I have a 2002 Ford Windstar. About 2 months ago the brake light, ABS light, and the traction control light came on the dashboard, as well as the speedometer and digital odometer quit working. I took it to a local Ford dealer to have it looked at, and they told me that the ABS module went bad and would need replaced. They quoted me $1006.17 + tax to fix it! it is my understanding that this year Windstar has a recurring problem with this module, and I would like to know if any work is being done on a recall?

- Hartville, OH, USA

problem #5

Apr 102009


  • 67,000 miles
I have a 2002 Ford Windstar van, while driving, the van the ABS light, traction control light and the emergency brake light all come on at the same time. They remain on until I park the van. If I turn the van back on the lights are off, but once I begin driving again all three warning lights come on. I have had the van. I have read that there is a serious problem with this happening in Ford Windstar vans and it has resulted in fires. I am terrified to drive the van now, and would like to know when there will be a recall. This has been going on with my van, especially since the weather has gotten warmer.

- Halethorpe, MD, USA

problem #4

Apr 092009


  • 126,000 miles
Ford Windstar sel 2002 after approx 1 hr of driving, the brake and ABS warning lights would illuminate and the check traction control message would flash on the information display. Problem would usually resolve after being left over night. The frequency of the intermittent failure would increase as weather got warmer. Eventually it would occur directly at first start in the morning.

- Pleasant Ridge, MI, USA

problem #3

Jun 152009


  • 91,000 miles
2002 Ford Windstar keeps displaying check ABS or check traction control on the message center. Then the ABS or trac light turns on the dash. After car is restarted the messages go away. Will happen every once in a while. My mechanic just told me there is a faulty ABS control module and sensor. I cannot afford to replace that. I read reports that this is a problem with the Windstar and a fire can result. My wife drives my 3 kids around in this vehicle.

- Barnegat, NJ, USA

problem #2

Apr 052009


  • 89,680 miles
Intermittent fault in the ABS system that causes the ABS and traction control system to disengage. Fault causes "ABS" "brake" and trac off" indicators to turn on. Fault seems to happen more frequently in warmer temperatures.

- Lansing, MI, USA

problem #1

Jun 012008


  • 105,000 miles
My 2002 Ford Windstar instrument cluster has illuminated the red brakelight yellow ABS lights and the trac off symbol sporadically since last summer this is consistent with information I found in a current NHTSA investigation. I have also read about other Windstar owners with similar issues. Sadly, they have had disastrous outcomes (vehicle fires and structure fires). There is no sign of brake fluid below brake fluid reservoir. Lights come on and do not always reappear right away when the engine is turned back on. Seems to be linked with exterior temperature - on days that are warm, the lights illuminate more frequently. On days that are cold, they are less likely to be illuminated. Did not happen at all during this past winter. As I stated, this has been going on for quite some time (almost a year) first noticed it last summer (2008) with 105,000 miles on the vehicle. Currently 135,000 miles on odometer. I have not parked the vehicle in the garage since last summer fearing a the possibility of a fire.

- Glastonbury, CT, USA

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