I went down this road with Ford last summer (2000) with my '99 Explorer XLT. This truck was an absolute piece of Ford GARBAGE!!! That said, the truck went to the dealer something like 15 times in 14 months for Repairs ranging from warped rotors to a faulty windshield, to 3 sets of front end seals to ball joints in the front end (get the idea)...
Anyway, I submitted a lemon law claim, and after a couple of loud arguments with the Sales and Service managers of my dealer, a win/win situation arose. My dealer offered to take my truck in trade for a 2000 model at a LOW cost. For my '99 and $3000 I got a 2000 brand new XLS. They wanted $6000 for the XLT. This included tax, title, etc.
So I don't know what your cash situation is, but I read you are actively car shopping. With the low (no) financing going on, you could probably work something out with the dealer for a 2001 leftover or 2002 Explorer. Just a thought. PS...so far the 2000 is a champ.
Boy it's been quiet in here, 2 posts in a row, 24 hours apart.
I own my truck, and I plan to own it for hopefully another 5-6 years. It is a 2000 XLS with the OHV engine, 4wd, auto tranny. I currently have almost 18000 miles on it, mixed driving, maybe more like city (a lot of stop and go in central NJ). At what mileage/time do you guys recommend getting the tranny serviced? When getting the tranny done, how extensive a service (eg. fluid change vs. gasket work). How often do you change the coolant and flush the radiator? How about changing plugs? Also, what is it with these engine flushes? All the dealers around here push them. Thanks for your input...
You can get more specific info in a Haynes repair manual, but here is what I do:
Oil = every 3-4 months, or 3,500- 4,000 miles
Coolant = Flush every 2 years or 24,000 miles
Tranny = Change fluid and filter (std dealer svc does not change the filter) every 12,000 miles
Hoses = every 4 years, whether they need it or not
Serpentine belt = Change every 2 years.
Plugs = every 30,000 miles
Plug wires = every 4 years, whether they need it or not
Fuel Filter = Every 2 years or 24,000 miles
Lube door hinges and locks every spring and fall.
Inspect brake pads every 3 months. Replace every 20,000 miles or as needed.
Tires = Inspect tires every 3 months and replace at 5 yr or 50,000 miles. Check air pressure every month.
Add Chevron Techron to the gas every spring.
Add drygas (gas line antifreeze) every snowfall or ski trip.
The dealer I get my ride serviced at was telling me that Ford has no set guideline for having a transmission serviced. That's a good line to have when it comes down to someone not properly maintaining their vehicle therefore shortening its life.
I think the Explorer owners manual has a maintenance schedule.. I personally thought it was ridiculous... but if i recall correctly, it did call for Tranny service at 36K. This is the same manual that calls for oil changes every 7,500 miles.
I've got a question for you. I am looking to be educated.
I have a 95 Explorer 4WD. About a year ago I had a "fluttering" sound in the front end that I thought was a wheel bearing. I took it to the dealership and the tech knew immediately what it was. They lubed the "front driveshaft double carden seal". Sound gone. Now a year later it is back and I need to take it back in to get it lubricated again.
What is a double carden seal? I am technically literate, but I don't know where this seal is and what function it performs. Is this no big deal and something that just needs to be lubed occasionally, or is it something I should keep my eye on? I have considered dumping the vehicle before it starts costing me money. Is this a sign of potential future problems?
Thanks for the link. I have a general understanding now. What I can't gather from the link is whether or not the need to lube this is telling me anything about future repairs to the transfer case. Do you know if this just requires periodic lubing?
According to the Haynes Manual you should lubricate the driveshaft yolk every 30K. If you had it done last year and the original problem is back, this might mean that you have to increase the frequency of lubrication, the easy solution, or you might have a developing problem with the transfer case driveshaft or universal joint. How many miles are on the odometer? In any event, direct observation of the components is the best way to diagnose the problem. We could infer any one of dozens of causes, but until one looks, it is impossible to tell. You should bring the truck in to a good mechanic and get it checked. I Hope it is something simple and inexpensive.