1998 Ford Explorer Consumer Review: Reliable workhorse

1998 Ford Explorer - Consumer Review

1998 Ford Explorer

Average Consumer Rating

174 Total Reviews

All Models

Build Quality
Reliability Value
Reliable workhorse
By Love to travel on


1998 Ford Explorer Limited 4dr SUV AWD


Purchased 2 years old with 34,000 miles. Original flaws repaired under warranty by first owner, but had to take it in to redo the front differential pinion seal. Relatively few problems over 7 years and 70,000 miles: the usual DPFE failure, cruise control servo that went out at 100,000, squeaky bushing requiring replacement of an anti-wind up bar in the rear suspension, very short lived ignition wires - replaced twice. Major annoyance: disappearing display of the MACH radio - replaced the power board myself; otherwise a very expensive repair. Minor annoyance: squeaky front axle seals in cold weather. Overall, compared to other vehicles that I owned, a very reliable, almost trouble- free performer.

Best Features

Powerful, troublefree 5.0 engine. Strong, chassis-on-frame, real SUV construction; unlike those newer sardine-can 'unibody' cars pretending to be SUVs. Easy access to spark plugs through the wheel well - the easiest I have seen on any modern vehicle. Troublefree A/C even at 100,000 - quite amazing!

Worst Features

Original brake pads dangerously weak - had to replace with aftermarket. Radio display fiasco should have been fixed by Ford for free. Headlights are very poor, due to the combined high/low beam design. Needs twin headlights, like Crown Vic. Fog lights are useless - needs cornering lights instead.
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