Ford Explorers Being Investigated for Exhaust Odor Seeping Into Interior

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Ooh, that smell. Can’t you smell that smell? The smell of exhaust around you?

Some of you with 2011-2015 Ford Explorers can. Forum member USAF_CCM, the owner of an all-wheel-drive 2013 Explorer Limited with the 3.5-liter V6, said “I use the gas pedal quite often if you know what I mean. My wife began to notice an odor in the cabin, immediately after I passed challenged drivers.”

Adam_Gonzalez has a 2015 model and said it “just started with the smell 29,000 miles. It was faint at first but just yesterday as we were driving the AWD light came on and show AWD off then the smell got so bad that we had to stop and get air.”

You all aren’t the only ones going through this. According to the Detroit Free Press, “The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it received 154 complaints involving Ford Explorers with model years between 2011 and 2015.” Those complaints mentioned the smell of exhaust being present in the cabin when the Explorers were at full throttle and when the air conditioning was in re-circulation mode. Ford is cooperating with the agency’s investigation.

Pupnduck said, “The exhaust vents (rubber flappers) for the interior are located up inside the rear wheel-wells. I’ve been told that they have a heavier flap version that doesn’t open so easily but it takes quite a bit of labor and disassembly of the rear bumper cover and wheel-well liner to get to them.” Unfortunately, that didn’t seem to help USAF_CCM, who said, “I watched the Ford Tech as he dropped the rear cowl/bumper cover and replaced the cabin exhaust flap. I’ve run this car with full blown A/C & heat, yet odor still comes in for a few seconds upon acceleration.”

It’s not clear how many Explorers are affected by this problem, but Autodata Corp.’s data shows that Ford sold more than 950,000 2011-2015 Explorers.

If you start to get a whiff of exhaust in your 2011-2015 Explorer, bring it up in the forum thread below. Ford has people, under the screenname FordService, who will assist you in getting to the bottom of this issue.

Chime in with your thoughts on the forum. >>

via [Detroit Free Press]

photo credit [Ford]

Derek Shiekhi contributes to a variety of Internet Brands’ Auto sites, including J-K Forum , Jaguar Forums, and 5 Series. He's also a member of the Texas Auto Writers Association.

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