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06 XLT sluggish, vibrates, stutters

SlaterT

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City, State
East TN
Year, Model & Trim Level
2006 Explorer XLT
Callsign
K4QWZ
I purchased a 2006 Explorer XLT about a month ago. When I test drove it, I liked the way it drove but after I purchased it, that quickly faded.

Two weeks after we bought it, we had to get $1000 in repairs, mainly to the emergency brake and rear differential because the brake was dragging. They did a basic checkup and tuneup. I thought that the brake problem was the cause of most of my problems but apparently not.

The vehicle is very sluggish and it feels like it has no power at all. On the interstate, I have to floor it to pass a car, even at the speed limit. It's very difficult to get it to maintain speed...it will either go faster or slower. If I let off the accelerator, it bogs down like the brakes are applied (which isn't the case). It won't coast. As a result, it's hard to drive when you are in traffic or behind someone because it just refuses to go the same speed.

Not to mention it shakes significantly at speeds above 60 mph.

The transmission lunges when changing gears and shifts at weird intervals and never seems to be in the appropriate gear.

The local Ford place says they have no clue what the problem is. The brakes are no longer dragging. They OKed the fuel injection system. There are no fault codes. Spark plugs, air filter, oil filter are all brand new. Fluids are good.

Any ideas, tips, or help will be greatly appreciated as I'm getting extremely frustrated over the whole ordeal.
 


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Explorer_PL

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06EB V8
Mileage, engine ?

Clean the throttle body.
 




SlaterT

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125k
4.0L V6 FI SOHC
 




SlaterT

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Could it be a vacuum leak? You can hear a whistling noise that increases with acceleration. It sounds like it's coming from behind the dash. Not sure if that would be sign of that or not.
 




Flag Gibby

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2006 Mountaineer AWD
Like Explorer_PL said clean the throttle body and also clean the MAF sensor (a $7 can of CRC MAF sensor cleaner can be used on both parts). I recall reading here somewhere of an individual that had a vacuum leak that made that sound so it is possible. Have the local Ford place go on a test drive with you so you can point the sound out to them, but I would do that only after cleaning the throttle body and MAF sensor to see if that fixes the problem first.
Also, the PCV valve should have been changed around 100K miles so replace it if there are no records of it being done yet.
 




SlaterT

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Thanks, I'll try those things and go from there. I greatly appreciate the advice.
 




feetwet

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Maple Grove, MN
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2006 XLT V8
Any codes show up on a OBDII scanner?
 




SlaterT

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I have not personally tried that yet. But, the local Ford place ran diagnostics and said nothing came up.
 




swshawaii

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Sounds like the symptoms of a faulty TPS, but will usually throw p0120-124 or p01120-25 DTC's. :scratch:
 




SlaterT

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I took it to the local Ford repair shop for the third time. After a diagnostic and test drive, they still say there's nothing wrong with it. We did notice one of the tire balance weights has fallen off, so maybe that's causing the vibrating.

I'm starting to think that perhaps Ford ruined the Explorer in 2006. I had a 2004 and a 1995, both of which had their share of problems but both had plenty of power and were never sluggish. I find it odd that 1995 with 250k runs better than a 2006 with 100k.

Maybe there is something wrong with it and we're just missing it. I'm going to try and find someone with a similar model and see if I can drive it to compare with mine.
 




fonicsmonkey

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Year, Model & Trim Level
2006 Limited
My 06 started doing that stuff...even set off the check engine light a couple times...I just changed the spark plugs and coils and it runs like new. I was getting a cylinder four misfire. If I had to guess, I think the new coil is what fixed my problem. I've read posts of others having the hesitation/bucking issue and they also solved the problem with a new coil on the misfiring cylinder. Go check for codes at your local part store that lends out their scan tool...check for any codes or pending codes. Advance Auto and Autozone do that around here. My vehicle took a couple months of these issues before it set off the CEL.
 




Flag Gibby

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2006 Mountaineer AWD
My 06 started doing that stuff...even set off the check engine light a couple times...I just changed the spark plugs and coils and it runs like new. I was getting a cylinder four misfire. If I had to guess, I think the new coil is what fixed my problem. I've read posts of others having the hesitation/bucking issue and they also solved the problem with a new coil on the misfiring cylinder. Go check for codes at your local part store that lends out their scan tool...check for any codes or pending codes. Advance Auto and Autozone do that around here. My vehicle took a couple months of these issues before it set off the CEL.

He has the V6 engine not the V8.
 




SlaterT

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The Ford place ran a diagnostic and there were zero error codes and zero misfires. Everything reported 100% OK. My MPG runs about 17.4 and with no errors I think it's just the vehicle itself. I figure if there's something wrong making it sluggish it should drop the MPG, but 17.4 seems to be above-average. If that's the case, I really am surprised. Like I said, my 2004 V6 had plenty of power.

I bought a Haynes manual today so I'll be doing some checking and investigating over the next few days. Maybe I'll go find another one in a used car lot and test drive it for comparison. lol
 




Flag Gibby

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Just FYI, this generation motor responds best with a partial throttle instead of a pedal all the way to the floor input when you want to go. Also, 17.4 MPG is average (not low or high) for the V6 in city driving. If your 04 was 2WD and your 06 is 4WD that could explain the difference in the feeling of the vehicle because the 06 will be a lot heavier and drives different because of a fully independent suspension.
 




SlaterT

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Anyone know if the 06 Explorer shuts off the fuel injectors when decelerating? I've heard that could make it slow down faster when coasting.

Also, I think I've got an exhaust leak. Could that also hurt performance?
 




Flag Gibby

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You must have been reading about the 4.0L diesel engine that Jeep makes. Also, an exhaust leak can hurt your performance depending on where the leak is at and how big it is (it takes away from bottom end torque which is critical for these heavy vehicles to get up to speed very quickly). Usually if you have an exhaust leak you will eventually have some sort of a code thrown if it is before the catalytic converters and the Ford guys would have noticed that when they looked the vehicle over for you.
It sounds to me like you really do need to find another Explorer with the V6 on a used car lot and take it for a test drive so you can compare to your vehicle.
 




Flag Gibby

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Been thinking about this one... the only other thing that I can come up with that can cause the engine to be sluggish is if the engine is not coming up to operating temperature due to a thermostat failing open.
 




Bobmbx

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Mine does the same thing, esp with the A/C running. I've discovered that if I turn off the O/D when I'm in town the performance is much better. But, like you, when I'm on the highway and want to pass someone, its really unnerving to step on the throttle and get virtually no response, even when it down shifts. Lots of noise, higher revs, but no git up and go.
 




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