Ford Expedition Manufacturer DEFECT Windshield/ electrical
My name is Petrina Compton. I am sending you this email regarding severe electrical problems I am experiencing with my Ford Expedition. Per service personnel at the Jenkins & Wynne Ford dealership in Clarksville, Tennessee, these problems are a direct result of water intrusion into the GEM/CJB due to a faulty windshield as outlined in the following special message sent directly from Ford to all Ford dealerships in April of 2002:
*FORD SPECIAL MESSAGE #15773 VARIOUS ELECTRICAL CONDITIONS RESULTING FROM WATER INTRUSION INTO THE GEM/CJB
SOME 1997-2002 EXPEDITION AND 1998-2002 NAVIGATOR VEHICLES MAY EXHIBIT
VARIOUS UNUSUAL ELECTRICAL CONDITIONS, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO: FRONT OR REAR BLOWER OR EATC STAYING ON WITH KEY OUT OF THE IGNITION, RADIO STAYING ON AFTER DOORS OPENED AND KEY OUT OF IGNITION, WIPER CIRCUIT FAILURE CODES, AND MULTIPLE SYSTEM WARNING LIGHTS WITH 'SHORT TO POWER' OR 'LOW BATTERY VOLTAGE' DTCS. THESE SYMPTOMS MOST OFTEN OCCUR AFTER A RAIN OR SNOW.
THIS MAY BE DUE TO GEM/CJB WATER INTRUSION RESULTING FROM A WINDSHIELD WATER LEAK. TO SERVICE, REMOVE THE GEM AND CJB FROM THE VEHICLE, SEPARATE THEM AND INSPECT FOR WATER CONTAMINATION OR CORROSION. IF FOUND IN EITHER COMPONENT, REPLACE BOTH COMPONENTS AND COMPLETELY RESEAL THE WINDSHIELD.
EFFECTIVE DATE: 04/05/2002
These problems have existed for years. And although I have taken my vehicle in to have correct these problems, at no time did any service personnel reference the above message, or fix my vehicle in accordance with prescribed guidelines.
The following is a summary of the services performed on my vehicle that are a direct result of this problem. I will be more than happy to provide copies of these documented services upon request.
*Dec 2000: My husband and I purchased our vehicle in Washington with 13,000 miles on it while on Christmas leave from Germany, and our truck sat in storage until our return in Sep 2001. We then drove our vehicle from California to our new duty station at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
*Jan 2002: We had issues with the electrical and transmission modular. We took the vehicle to the World of Ford dealership in Arlington, Virginia. They replaced the power train control modular, airbag light, and the Check Engine light, and reprogrammed the GEM modular. The odometer reading at this time was 26,795 miles. Fortunately, the vehicle was still under warranty.
*Jul 2002: I took the truck back to World of Ford in Arlington, Virginia for the following problems: transmission slipping, Check Engine light, airbag lights, and ABS lights. Ford said they could not duplicate problems. The vehicle was still covered under warranty with an odometer reading of 30,481 miles. Again, although the Ford Special Message had been released in April of 2002, at no time was it mentioned to me as a possible source for these problems.
*Sep 2004: I went back to World of Ford with the same problems mentioned above, plus the trip meter/odometer was blinking in and out. They replaced the LED and electrical connections under the driver seat, and fixed the lights on the dash. I had to pay $600.00 for these repairs. The dealership wanted an additional $500.00 to fix the odometer/trip meter lights, but we simply could not afford to fix it at that time. Still no mention of the Special Message. The odometer reading at the time of these repairs was 56,076 miles.
*May 2006: My vehicle is currently sitting at the Jenkins & Wynne Ford dealership in Clarksville, Tennessee because of electrical issues. I took it in because the transmission felt like it was slipping sporadically (mentioned above), the Check Engine light, the ABS light, and airbag light are still not working properly (mentioned above), and, of course, I still have the problem with the Odometer/trip meter. A service employeee, Mike Burnes, told me on 16 May 2006, that Ford had manufactured some front windshields incorrectly and that I needed to replace my front windshield, fuse box, and wires in my dash because of corrosion, and rust caused by the rain seeping through the windshield and running on the inside of the truck into the dash and fuse box causing extensive damage. Mike Burnes told me he believes the extent of the damage is indicative of years of precipitation getting into my vehicle because of the faulty windshield. They had to replace the front windshield, electrical wires in the dash and fuse box, the fuse box, GEM modular, transmission modular, airbag control
modular, and fuel injection gas pump. My cost for these repairs is $2632.00. In addition, my transmission is on the verge of needing to be replaced - they found twice the amount of metal shavings in the pan than normal for a vehicle with only 81,000 miles. Replacing the transmission will cost $3000.00. Service personnel believe this problem may have also been caused by the faulty windshield/water damage. For now, we do not have to replace the transmission; however, they are not sure how long it will be before I will have to.
At this time, my truck is scheduled to be repaired tomorrow, but I can't afford these repairs, nor should I have to. It is my belief that
1.) This is a FORD manufacturing issue. Ford recognized the problem as far back as 2002, but did not recall or alert individual vehicle owners. Because of pure negligence on their part, I have had to take my vehicle in for repairs on 4 separate occasions.
2) Jenkins & Wynne of Clarksville Tn, HAD to repair/replace the electrical issues (totaling $2632.00) before they could move on to the transmission problems. Now we've discovered we may have to repair/replace the transmission (an additional $3000.00), and this problem may be directly related to the faulty windshield. In addition, Mike Burnes said the truck was throwing electrical codes and did NOT have a spare digital dash to find the problems before repairing/replacing parts and charging for
parts one at a time. I HAD NO CLUE this was going to COST this AMOUNT of money because I was not given an estimate prior to. Again, they couldn't give me an estimate because problems needed to be fixed before they could move on to the next set of problems and realize the full extent of the damages to my vehicle.
The payoff for my truck is $7400.00. And now I am looking at a minimum of an additional $2300 - $5300.00 worth of repairs that could have been avoided if Ford and/or their dealerships where I had repairs made to my vehicle would have fixed the problem from the very beginning.
The bottom line is, I have sent this information to several agencies - Ralph Nader, Consumer Affairs, Better Business Bureau, National HWY and Safety, and the Center for Auto Safety - to report this because I feel that Ford neglected its consumers by not alerting vehicle owners to these potential problems and the safety hazards associated with them.
I would appreciate any assistance or guidance with this issue.
Petrina Compton & William Compton (deployed to Iraq)