Don't let the door hit you in the ass....... '92 Exploder - just sqaucked
the tires hard leaving work tonight (didn't think it would happen). Great
gas mileage with little in the way of anything more than oil
I get the feeling that you will have problems with ANYTHING you buy.
I always love people who buy a vehicle, don't do anything but pour gas, and
an occasional can of oil into it, and drive it till it physically stops, and
then complain about what a POS it is.
It's funny how hard some people can be on cars. My friend picked up a used
station wagon for his ex-wife, from a neighbor.
This thing was the typical little old lady's car. 5 yrs old, and had no
mileage, and was always in the garage. It looked like a NEW car.
His wife drove it for 6 months, and it looked 30 yrs old. the inside was
crusted with crap, carpet embedded with cigarette butts. the trim on the
dash was melted from an ashtray fire cuz she was too lazy to empty it (and
if she did, I'm sure it would have been in a grocery store parking lot).
Scrapes and dents up and down the sides, Tires ripped up from curb
And all she did was bitch about what a POS her ex "stuck" her with ...
I think you're being a bit harsh, Jim
On the gas issue, my 92 is pretty good - so I don't with the poster on that.
And one should know going in that superb gas mileage is not something to
expect from most SUVs.
But as much as we love our Explorers or WANT to love them, 91&92 were very
bad years - and the vehicle reliability isn't that high for some other years
My garaged 92 XLT 4-door (65,500 miles) is probably one of the best
maintained vehicles in the US. It is INSANELY maintained. I do all the
maintenance myself to exact spec. I wax everything INCLUDING parts of the
bottom, such as skid plates, drive shafts, front springs, even the door
wells, engine compartments and door hinges (MY GOD). Any sign of surface
rest immediately is covered with a light of coat of Rust-Oleum. Drive shafts
slip yokes are greased regularly, as well as brake caliper slide rails (with
But if I am going to be honest, I have to say that number of problems I have
had (and the other looming potential problems) really are unacceptable.
Right now I am dealing with three:
You already know about the rusting quarter panels, the result of Ford's
leaving HOLES in the wheel wells during manufacture and omitting the
interior e-coat, issues detailed in a TSB. GEEZE!
I've also posted that the piston bracket broke off the vehicle hatch two
weeks ago - an item subject to a safety recall
After lunch today, I am going to put a clamp on yet another loose heat
Other things I have had (just off the top of my head)
Improperly torqued head gasket (TSB)
Leaking valve cover gasket (TSB)
Bad radius arm bushings (TSB)
Horrible transfer case shift motor (Yes, I am still am using the little
drummer boy approach. Works every time)
Unsafe tires (Alright, blame Firestone, but they came with the truck. My
Firestones were falling apart with more than half the tread still on them!)
Cassette player that sometimes loses left channel (I have the JBL system)
Cassette player/radio that simply goes dead intermittently, losing display
Exhaust system subject to premature failure (TSB - who designed that dumb
Dimples in the seat belt tracks, preventing seats from moving back and forth
(TSB - known safety issue)
Broken spring or spring attachment in door handle (there's another post on
this right now)
Constant coolant leak from some unidentifiable place in or around the
radiator (maybe that valve thing people talk about)
All this and only 65,500 miles!
And based upon TSBs and what I've seen here, I fully expect to see the
following at some point:
Rubber plugs to fall out of my manual tranny
Armrest to break (TSB - I try to be easy on mine, though I probably should
have broken it off while the vehicle still was under warranty)
Self-destruction of the air conditioner
Self-destruction of auto hubs due to use of plastic components
Spare tire falling out of the bottom of the truck and killing someone
I am sure I can think of more.
But my point is, as a consumer journalist, I simply could not argue with
anyone who complains about the quality of the 91-92 models (though I know
that the original poster did not mention the vehicle year.) Yet my friends
who drive Toyotas, for example, never have ANYTHING, NOT A SINGLE THING go
wrong during the first years of service - at least for the Corollas and
Camrys. (Oh, once one complained about a loose piece of weather stripping on
And based on Ford's unwillingness to fix what it itself acknowledges as
shortcomings in some cases, I simply could not justify ever buying another
Ford. And that's sad because I really have been loyal to that company and
would love to have a new Explorer (though the lack of a manual tranny now
also discourages me, and I don't like the design. The new Mountaineers look
But as I've said in the past, for Ford, not only is quality not Job #1, it
is not even on the list.
I am not looking to start a flame war here, but I have to be honest with
myself and everyone else, even though I love my poor rusting and
mechanically defective XLT.
You can see it here: http://giorgianni.homestead.com/explorer.html
With sad regards,
(I prefer that you reply by posting back to the newsgroup. If you must
email: remove "killspam" from reply address. This email address will be
valid for a short time only.)
Anthony, I guess I'm quite opposite from many people...... the Explorer, the
SuperCrew, the ol' farts motorcycle....... they're all machines -tools, if
you will- and they are destined from day one to break and/or wear out.
I'm not gentle on mine..... I expect it to do what I need it to do (though I
consider myself wise enough to know what I can't expect it to do). We just
passed 170,000 km with the Ex... not quite 105,000 miles. 20 years ago,
considering our climate, 105,000 miles have left us with a hurtin' unit
(subzero starts are probably the single hardest thing on an infernal (sic)
combustion engine). A month or so ago, I drove the thing to Calgary, 7 or 8
hours to the south. Better than half the trip was on a 110kph speed limited
road so you can guess at what the "unofficial" speed limit is. Not so much
as a hiccup.
I bought it with the broken armrest (not a bad design in itsef until us
porky dudes use it to help lever out butts into a comfortable position) and
brand new tires. I fixed the armrest (per the TSB), replaced the intake
gaskets, did the manual hub thing and I'm due for a muffler (where I live,
mufflers generally do about 3 or 4 years..... period). I had the shift motor
thing a couple of times but it returned to normal with exercise. The only
complaint with the sound system is from the added in Sony 10 pack. For some
reason or another, one of the camber slugs on the top ball joints rotated
and threw the alignment off....... I have a VBSEG on my face when I say I
aligned it the night before I left for Calgary - GAD!!!! I LOVE TOOLS!!! Of
course, I do have the ubiquitous Ex rust..... everything I've ever owned has
developed rust.... no surprises here.
Let us not forget that 4X4s have many more parts.... many more moving parts
that are subject to the same breakage and wear I mentioned earlier. Again,
there are times that I'm surprised something lasted as long as it did rather
than surprised it broke or wore out. Cost per mile on a 4WD or AWD will
ALWAYS be higher than cost per mile on a 2WD... and that brings us to
another little considered point. If I'm out hunting or exploring, I do it in
two wheel drive..... I go in until I get stuck and use the 4WD to get out
and go home or elsewhere. If we go in in 4WD, it just means we have a longer
walk ahead of us 8^)
Regular oil changes every 3,000 or 3 months and I spend 10 or 15 minutes
looking at stuff while I have it up.
You're quite right..... it's an SUV - a truck in sheeps clothing. If gas
consumption is an issue, the last thing a person should consider is a 4000#
"pig". I live in pickup truck country so I have no misconceptions about good
and poor gas mileage, finding the EX to be very easy on gas (don't forget I
got rid of a '93 F150 4X4 with the 351 to get the Ex.... if ya wanna talk
bad gas miles....). It's fun to drive (that's worth something). It's easier
than some to work on.... another plus. That list goes on and on....
Harsh??? Not me..... Calling a spade a shovel ain't gonna change what it is
so I may just as well call it a spade and be done with it..
Glad you're having better luck with yours, Jim.
But I really think that your problem with rust generally up there, leaving a
hole in the wheel well for road salt and other stuff to run down the inside
of the wheel well AND leaving out the e-coat is really bad designing or
building or whatever the source of this problem was.
At least I would have prefered to have something in the owner's manual
saying: Caution: we left a hole in the right wheel well. Please have it
filled before using your new truck or, as an alternative, never get your
At least then I could have done something to prevent having what now looks
like a showroom new truck (it took a lot of blood and sweat on my part to
achieve this) marred by rusted through quarter panels!
And all these TSBs really are a bit much, not to mention shift motors,
transmission plugs and all the other stuff. I think that we loyal Ford
owners deserve better. Furthermore, it is very irritating for the company to
admit it sold vehicles with a substantial defect and then fail to make good
on it. Ideally, I should try to get a class action suit going on this, since
I really think there is a reasonable breach of warranty claim here, at least
in the 13 US states that prohibit manufacturers from waiving the implied
warranty of merchantability, which is part of the US Uniform Commercial
Code. But it really shouldn't even have to come to that. A responsible
company should make good on such things.
OK! Floor it whenever the light turns green! Don't change the oil! Leave
road salt all over it for months! Treat it like a rental car! Beat the
*hell* out of it! See ya!
<roll eyes> There should be a minimum IQ test on the order form...
300,000 miles, org. engine, NO major problems..I do not understand how
people say that '92's are not good trucks. I would buy another '92
right now. I have had the shift motor problem...NOT a major thing. I
have gotten 100,000 miles per trans. rebuild NOT bad and I still get
22+ miles per. gal...Do not have the 1/4 panel rust thing..can't find
said hole..don't know what that is about...The Explorer is like any
other car/truck on the road...take care of it and it WILL take care of
you...This truck has NEVER failed me anytime.
It lives in Reno,NV. and spends quite a bit of time in the mountains
winter, summer etc.
It is also a daily driver and I will not even think of getting rid of
We bought it with two (2) miles ( that is brand new) for $18,000.
I do believe we got our dollars worth.....
Some people are never happy with what they have.....
Thunder, I don't think I have seen a single 91-92 model up here in the
Northeast without rusted through corner panels. There may be some, but I
sure haven't seen them.
It also seems strange that your escaped all the problems listed in all the
TSBs. But I suppose it is possible you lucked out. But did your not come
with an exhaust resonator? Is it still there? How about your radius arms
bushings? Are those still original?
Again, there is very little chance that you or anyone else on this group
takes as good care of their Explorer as I do, and I'll even include Jim
Warman in that, and there have been many problems.
But I am very happy to hear about that 300,000 on the original engine. It
gives me hope!
As for the hole, mine is on the forward part of the right wheel well where
two brackets come together at a 90 degree angle. You can stick a pencil in
right where they join. This is the subject of as TSB that Ford printed
twice. It applies to 91, 92 and some 93 models. It is interesting, if I
understand you correctly, that you drive on salted winter roadways and have
quarter panels that do not resemble something corn flakes when you push on
them with your thumb.
I certainly wish I was as fortunate as you.As I type I wonder when my 97' XLT
will be ready, the dealer promised me some time last week. It's now getting a
transmission. After all after two transfer cases it seems that would be the
next thing to go. It seems the tranny they fot from ford parts had to be
remove and rebuilt. After this it still wouldn't run. So they ordered another
one. The short block replaced at 36240 miles.
Maybe Ford does make a good product but it certainly has not graced my
Incidently, The vehicle was pampered maybe that's what was wrong.
You know George, you may be on to something
Yours was pampered. Mine is the best maintained Explorer on the planet - and
we're having problems.
Folks such as Jim Warman acknowledge hard use. Yet they seem to have
excellent reliability. Maybe it is our approach. When I get my 92 back from
the dealer later today to replace the torn liftgate bracket maybe I'll beat
the hell out of it. Who knows, maybe the rusted quarter panels will fix
Good for you. You made the right decision. Can't wait to dump my POS
1999 Exploder! Next purchase is a Toyota. I can waive at all those
Exploders I pass broken down on the side of the road soon. :-)
No computer components were harmed during the creation of this post,
however several billion electrons were abused to ensure its safe delivery.
Then, pray tell, why are you busy with a group that basically appreciates
Guzzled gas = wasn't a car..... Gutless = wasn't a car. No specifics, just
kvetching...... I'm sure that the toyota NGs will appreciate you complaining
about the issues that Toyota has (may come as a surprise but, in spite of
what the ads say, there is no perfect car). Your post has been eminently
pointless and speaks more about you than the car....
Yes yur Camry will get good gas miles. No your Camry wont be gutless......
but then your Camry wont be a SUV either....
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