What's Next?

Based on what I've been told by Ford general counsel, the Ford engineer that came onsite (twice), and the Ford dealership, our vehicle has all of the repairs specified in the technical service bulletin (TSB 16-0166) attached below. Yet, our problem isn't fixed. We still register higher levels of CO and we still smell exhaust in the vehicle. I also spoke with a Ford representative <insert name of company fielding their backlog of calls for this problem> after they setup a hotline for exhaust concerns and I was told the same thing. What can you do?

We are constantly receiving recommendations from family and friends on what to do with our Ford Explorer. Taking legal action is one common theme. We would make good candidates too considering we have nearly all of our woes and encounters documented and/or recorded. Fortunately for Ford, I have a slight aversion to the U.S. legal process, but I haven't ruled it out entirely. We've also received numerous mailers asking us to be part of a class action lawsuit. The kicker is the class action lawsuit was *before* the NHTSA added 2015, 2016, and 2017 model year Explorers to the investigation. Maybe we'll start receiving more with those years included?

By far the most common recommendation is to trade it in. That sounds great on the surface, but it has a few issues. First, we would be transferring the problem to someone else. Would the dealership make them aware of the ongoing exhaust issues? Could we even do this in good conscious? Second, we don't buy new vehicles with the plan to trade them off in a year or two. We buy them to drive them for several years. Part of the reason for this "process" is so we don't get nickeled and dimed by repairs on an aging vehicle. I also don't like the idea of leaving my family stranded on the side of the road. The other aspect of this common sense as I believe most everyone realizes a vehicle loses quite a bit of value the second you drive it off the lot and this vehicle is no different. 

Which leads me to my next issue. In at least one way, this vehicle is different in terms of its "lost" value. What I believe I uncovered is that the market for used Ford Explorers has absolutely tanked... So not only is the vehicle harming us otherwise, it is indirectly hurting the pocket book. I don't like to talk dollars and cents, but here goes. The sticker on our vehicle was around $52K when we purchased it less than 2 years ago. As I've mentioned, the vehicle was fairly loaded. We are currently in the process of getting a new vehicle for our family anyway so despite the issue transference conundrum, I checked what the price on the Explorer is. It was a whopping $28K! I expect the price to drop, but $24K?!?! That's almost half of the value! Ouch!!! And if Ford were to claim this is normal, then they have a bigger issue as a company!

Since our family is growing, we have decided that I will make the Explorer my primary vehicle in the hope that Ford pulls their head out of their backside and corrects the issue. Instead of trading in the Explorer, we'll trade in my Lincoln... I need a little larger vehicle anyway in the off chance I need to take the kids somewhere. In addition, I rarely drive my family around and we normally don't use my vehicle for out of town travel (except for the obvious issue aside). Basically, the chances of my family riding the vehicle once it is my daily driver is extremely low. Granted, I'll be driving around in the modern day Pinto, but I sit at the front of the vehicle and I can crack the window for fresh air. As I mentioned, we are in the market for a new vehicle and in case you are wondering, Ford and Lincoln are not on the radar as a possible replacement. Despite 2 new Ford/Lincoln sitting in my garage, that ship has sailed and Ford/Lincoln has lost a customer for life!

2015 Ford Explorer - Overall Ratings

 Overall Front Star Rating5 star
 Front Driver Side4 star
 Front Passenger Side5 star
 Chance of breathing in toxic fumes5 star

Dallas H,
Aug 16, 2017, 4:01 PM