really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
80,086 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.

2003 Ford Windstar engine problems

engine problem

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2003 Ford Windstar Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #52

May 152013

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 172,000 miles


For a few years, the ABS warning light has been intermittently coming on. It has mostly been during the warmer months of the year. Also, the brake warning light has been intermittently coming on. Sometimes the two lights come on together sometimes individually. Also, the low tire pressure warning has come on numerous times when there was no issue with tire pressure. Now I have a new issue- the speedometer is reading incorrectly. This is very unsafe because I am teaching my son how to drive and he is very nervous already, now he has no idea how fast he is going! this problem is also intermittent but happens 80 percent of the time the vehicle is driven. Mostly, it is indicating about half of the vehicles actual speed. I also got an airbag warning yesterday for the first time. I assume this issue will start to show up more often now. This vehicle is unsafe to drive with all of these erratic warnings and indications. Please help the nation out by mandating a recall of the Ford Windstar wheel speed sensors & vehicle speed sensors.

- Imperial, MO, USA

problem #51

May 022011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 100,200 miles
ABS and brake light comes on after 5 minutes, when the car is turned off it resets but the comes on again 5 minutes or so after driving. Cruise control not working.

- Holbrook, MA, USA

problem #50

Mar 072013

Windstar 6-cyl

  • miles
ABS light stays on. Car idles high all the time, speedometer and all other dashboard control go haywire for no reason. I have to pound on the dashboard to make it stop. This had been going on for a long time. Carmd device states ABS sensor need and various other thing. I have spend a lot of money to no avail. Seat belt attached to sliding door on the right side which is to cross over to the passenger on the second row never worked. I purchased this as a used vehicle six years ago I do like this mini van but with all of the major problems I really don't think I will be able to afford this vehicle much longer. Please help me it you can. I live in an area where a vehicle is mandatory and I am on a fixed income. I just want to be safe on the road. Please help.

- Lawndale, NC, USA

problem #49

Sep 032012

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 111,452 miles


While driving ABS and brake light comes on 5 minutes after driving sometime not at all and now lights never go off have new brake pads and shoes took to dealer for scds recall they did not check or discuss ABS light or brake light I asked but they did not acknowledge lights or clear codes.

- Denver, CO, USA

problem #48

Jun 012010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • miles
Warning lights in dash come on and go off, ABS and brake light stay on, cruise control don't work every time.

- Las Animas, CO, USA

problem #47

Jun 012012

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 141,900 miles
I purchased my car on June 1, 2012. Shortly after, the brake ABS light, brake light, tire pressure light, and engine light came on. On July 9, 2012 I took the vehicle to maroone Ford in fort lauderdale to perform necessary repairs per the recall. Maroone Ford dealership performed the recall repairs and informed me that the vehicle engine lights and tire pressure lights were issues not related to the recall. During the period from July 9, 2012 to July 12, 2012 the ABS light and brake light did not turn on. On July 13, 2012 the ABS light and brake light turned on. I called maroone Ford and I was told to bring in the vehicle to the dealership. On July 14, 2012 I took the vehicle to the dealership.

- Hallandale, FL, USA

problem #46

Sep 092011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles


My instrument panel keeps going crazy. The RPM needle is now pointing down into the dash. The speedometer usually is not working correctly, it will say that I am doing 20 mph, when I am doing more like 45-50. The gas gauge sometimes says that it is on empty, when I have a full tank of gas. Sometimes the needles work, sometimes they don't (with the exception of the RPM needle...it hasn't moved from that buried in the dash spot for a couple of months now), sometimes the speedometer needle goes all the way to the right and then gets buried in the dash also, so far though, each time, it has came back...even though it rarely registers even close to the correct speed. The repair for this is going to be about $700 is what I was told. I do not have that kind of money, and I am constantly praying that my 17 year old daughter who has to drive it sometimes, does not get into an accident because she is going too fast, and has no clue how fast she is actually going, or one of us may get a speeding ticket. I have looked at websites and seen that a lot of people are having these problems, so Ford should do the right thing and make a recall, before someone is seriously injured or even killed!!! also, not sure if it is related or not, but the ABS light stays on.

- Crestline, OH, USA

problem #45

Jun 092011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
ABS and brake dashboard lights warning that ABS system is inoperative, speed control system also inoperative. Break pressure deactivation switch leaking oil. This leaking oil has traveled down ABS wiring harness all the way to the ABS controller. Unsafe condition. Ford dealership has refused to repair this dangerous condition as a manufacturing/design defect and stated there currently is no recall issued for this very serious problem!!

- Arlington Heights, IL, USA

problem #44

Jul 152011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 59,000 miles
Brake lights came on suddenly when driving, cruise control stop working, svc engine light sometimes flash, was repaired in the past by dealer on 12/09/03 ( recall 09S09) for the same reason, right now I don't have a code but seems to be the same problem.

- Brawley, CA, USA

problem #43

Nov 092011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • miles
Yellow ABS light and red brake warning light stay on. This began after having recall # 09S09 (speed control system modification) performed at bondy's Ford in dothan al. Lights were not on when left dealership...came on later and have stayed on. Brakes do not seem to work as well now as before the recall work was done.

- Eufaula, AL, USA

problem #42

Jun 232011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 150,000 miles


While driving, I felt the van was not shifting, so I went to the dealer I bought it from. They said there was nothing wrong with the transmission. The problem still existed. I took it back to dealer-again, nothing wrong with transmission but they did do a transmission tune up. When I picked it up, I drove into town. I was driving on the highway and had to stop on a red light. On green, I pressed my gas pedal but the car would not move. In a desperate effort, I shut the engine off and waited a few minutes. I was able to move again, but for only about a quarter mile to have to do the same repeatedly until I got to a safer spot. Finally, I ended up leaving my van parked at a shopping center and called a cab home. This is not the only problem I have been going through with my Ford Windstar van. The interior lights flash on and off while I am driving, and my air conditioning doesn't work, even when I had free on put in it. I do not have the money for another car, nor do I have the money for a new transmission, along with having it put in. I live in a town where there are no buses and can only get a ride from a taxi. I don't have $10 one way for this! I need to get to work, and cannot afford to lose my job. All because of a malfunctioning vehicle that is causing same problems for many others out there. Ford should be recalling these vehicles!

- North Bennington, VT, USA

problem #41

Jun 092008


  • 104,874 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Windstar. The contact stated that the cruise control, anti-lock braking system and the speedometer malfunctioned. The cruise control could only be deactivated by tapping the brakes and not by engaging the switch. In addition, the ABS warning light was illuminated and the speedometer gauge was defective. The contact had not taken the vehicle to the dealer for further inspection or repairs. The contact believed the vehicle was unsafe to drive. The failure mileage was 104,874.

- Middletown, VA, USA

problem #40

May 132011


  • 89,000 miles
As I was driving from portsmouth nh to somersworth nh I noticed that the speedometer stopped working, the odometer had nothing but lines, no numbers, the overdrive light started blinking and the ABS and brake lights came on. I also noted that smoke has been coming from under the hood when I stop at a light or stop sign. These symptoms match what has been recorded on line as follows, the brake pressure differential deactivation switch (scds) (2B264) located under the master cylinder (behind the air filter) over time develops a leak. This causes a short and a fuse trip, fuse #10 if the engine is on. This leak also causes brake fluid to wick down two wires to the ABS brake module (2C219). The fluid accumulates on the (always on) power connectors for the ABS brake system which are powered by fuses 101 and 102 and are both 40 amp. The fluid attacts moisture, road salt and leads to a fire when the fluid and moisture act as conductor between the hot leads and ground. This switch has been the subject of other Ford recalls, just not the Windstar van yet. Below is a picture of the switch in question. Notice the fluid that leaked on the part below it. This switch will cause cruise control problems, speedometer, odometer and ABS brake system problems. I will not allow other family members to operate this vehicle and it appears that the Ford Motor Company will not fix this issue even though there was a recall for this exact issue, recall #09S09 because they indicate that my vehicle is not covered under this recall. The recall states clearly that this issue can cause a vehicle fire with or without the vehicle running.

- Somersworth, NH, USA

problem #39

Feb 182011

Windstar 6-cyl

  • 156,753 miles
Safety recalls concerns: 09V399000, 10V38500, 11V030000. Recall on # 10V385000 was repaired but still having a problem with the repair have taken back three times they couldn't find anything, but there is still a problem it makes a popping noise when vehicle shifts. Recall on #11V030000 was not repaired, took in for inspection to Ford they said as long as I was in Alabama I nothing to be concern about, the recall notice stated if the vehicle passed inspection the dealer is authorized to complete reinforcement, my vehicle passed inspection but no repair was made.recall on 09V399000 I have talk with them several times they informed me there was no recall for this vehicle for that recall.

- Georgiana, AL, USA

problem #38

Jan 262011


  • 125,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Windstar. The contact stated that the ABS and the brake light continued to illuminate while the cruise control was activated. The contact referenced NHTSA campaign id number: 09V399000 (vehicle speed control) but the contact was advised by the dealer that the vehicle was not included in the recall. Manufacturer was contacted and confirmed that the vehicle was not included in the recall and provided no further assistance. The failure mileage was 125,000.

- Livermore, ME, USA

problem #37

Jun 042010


  • miles
My ABS light keeps illuminating. This has been going on for approximately a year. I had the fix for the recall of the speed control that from what I am reading could be causing the issue with the ABS lights due to fluid leaking. 2003 Ford Windstar.

- Greensboro, NC, USA

problem #36

Jan 032011


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2003 Ford Windstar. Consumer states that there is a problem with the ABS and brake light. He states that his vehicle was not included in the recall for this issue. The consumer stated for the past 2 months the warning lights would come on intermittently. Primarily when the ambient air temperature was above 70 degrees. The consumer also attached the vehicle speed control recall notice.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #35

Oct 222010


  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Windstar. The contact stated was driving 5 ph when the ABS and the emergency brake warning lights illuminated. The failure occurred on an intermittent basis. The contact also stated that the cruise control had failed and had become inoperable. The vehicle was not inspected by a dealer or repaired. The failure mileage was approximately 100,000.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #34

Sep 022010


  • 97,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Windstar. The contact stated that the when he turned off the cruise control; several warning lights illuminated on the dashboard. The vehicle started to lose power, but the contact was able to drive the vehicle to his residence. The contact was not able to restart the vehicle. The contact found a recall campaign number 09V399000, vehicle speed control. The vehicle had not been inspected when the complaint was filed. The failure mileage and current mileages were 97000.

- Marion, NC, USA

problem #33

Oct 222010

Windstar 6-cyl

  • miles
System failure, speed control, speedometer, odometer, heater/airconditioner after looking up online what caused my systems to fail, I went to sinclair to purchase the part. I was told by parts mngr that it was on re-call for that and I would have to have it fixed by their service dept. They confirmed this was on re-call and had me return later that afternoon. After four and a half hours I was asked to come back that they were having difficulty fixing the problem. I attempted to make an appt later the next day and was told it was too late that I did not bring my vehicle in in a timely manner and they will no longer fix my vehicle. Their are no expiration dates on this re-call. I have received a customer service receipt explaining what they did and stating that they strive to give the best customer service. What a joke, they left me with a vehicle that is not safe to drive in this condition, after taking up my whole afternoon. I responded with a very disheartened lack of satisfaction and was referred to Ford headquarter. I was told that this was never a re-call item by Ford. If this was handled acurately the first time, my car would already be fixed. Dave would never have let this happen, he built this dealership on the concept of good customer service. If his team made an error, he would fix it on principal even if it meant he ate the cost. I guess his reputation was buried with him. I will be looking to purchase a vehicle in January and I will purchase from someplace else. [xxx] please help us get our van fixed. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- St. Louis, MO, USA

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