I actually don't have even 7K miles on my 2002 Explorer (6,950 as of this morning). My Explorer is sort of rare because it is a factory 5-speed, but I figured I can't be the only one with this setup. I was wondering if anybody had heard of a tranny problem that possibly makes the synchronizers wear out prematurely? I am having a little more resistance shifting into 3rd gear than in any other gears. Otherwise, the 5-speed tranny is very smooth. Almost as nice as the one in my Toyota The synchros aren't gone, but they certainly aren't performing like they should be.
I talked to a buddy this past weekend and he said that his friend had a 5-speed 3.0 Ranger and he lost his 3rd gear synchros by 20k miles. Anecdotal information, but I was wondering if there is a more widespread trend with the Ford manual trannies. I haven't been able to find any recall information.
I am still under warranty for a couple more years and nearly 30k miles, so I'll keep an eye on the situation. Would I be better off telling the dealership about it just so that they can put it into my records if it ends up getting much worse? I don't want them to tear into it unless they really have to. I also don't want to lose my truck for a month while I'm still paying insurance and making payments on it (unless they give me a Thunderbird or Cobra to drive in the meantime) My dealership also had never seen a 5-speed Explorer before mine, so they have little to no knowledge of how they are supposed to run.
I would go ahead and let them know about it now, while you have more mileage left on the warranty. They usually give you a loaner car for warranty repairs, and if they don't, ask to speak to the customer service manager/director. There is no reason you should have to pay for a rental car while your brand-new vehicle is being repaired under warranty.
Here's why I'm leary about taking it to the dealership: I've talked to my service manager about some other things and he was very hesistant to approve any sort of warranty work. He said that they do the work and then bill Ford for it. Ford then decides if they want to approve the claim or not. If not, the dealership is apparently stuck with the bill. For a simple storage bin latch, he says that it will cost them $400-500 to fix because it's a "trim piece". So anyways...he wanted me to pay out of pocket for a couple things that I believe are warranty repairs (handle on a storage bin is broken, rubber sleeve on wiring harness isn't fully seated into the firewall, driver side windshield wiper is "loose", passenger rearview mirror (the lens itself) is "loose") I have kept a list of all the things I have found with my car and I have given it to them to look at when I take it in (it's only been in twice). They tell me that they can't approve the work, but the Ford Rep can. I tell them to let me know when the Ford Rep comes in because I would like him to approve the work. I get the answer that it might be a couple of weeks and they'll call me. No calls...of course. I have been waiting 2 months now for the Ford Rep to show up at the dealership down the street from my house. You would think that the service manager would have earned the position because he provides the best service...apparently not. I guess it might be about time to move on to the next dealership... I'm glad I haven't fallen for their "pay-out-of-the-pocket" scheme because I bet they still send the claim to Ford and get paid coming and going.
[/rant] I know that I *should* tell a dealer so that they have the opportunity to resolve the problem, but you can see why I don't think that it will accomplish much. I'll mull it over and pick a different dealer to see if they aren't so crooked.
Exactamundo. In addition to that, I would write a letter to the executive at Ford (corporate) describing what you just said here. Name names. Show the complete timeline and all the events that occurred over that timeline. With a well-written letter, I'd be willing to bet that someone doesn't have a job soon, and someone else from Ford will be checking in on your situation to help you out. With the economy as bad as it is, it's a buyer's market. Ford would be foolish to stand by and do nothing about this.
I agree with Michael. The more details, the better. One piece of advice if you go that route is to stay civil and avoid anything that can be percieved as a threat. Tell him how much you like your Ford, have always been a Ford fan, and how disappointed you were with the service manager.
Also ask the service manager (who told you he was waiting for the rep) for the reps name and a contact name or email address. The only way things get done to your satisfaction is to escelate the problem. A rep shouldn't have time to deal with this and will be pissed at the service manager for failing to take care of it.
I wish you luck and hope everything get fixed on your truck, from the tranny to the shining of the tires by the service manager himself.
I have to wonder about resting your hand on the shifter. I have a 96 Toyota with 73000 on the odometer and I always rest my hand on the shifter (usually pushing or pulling slightly in the direction the stick goes for that particular gear). Where have you heard this info and is there any validity to it? I'm curious because I don't want to tear up my trans with laziness. Luckily my Explorer is an auto. Thanks