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Better? 1995 Explorer or 1999 Exp Xlt?

Maxcady

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Which one is a better deal?

Price $1,000- 1995 Ford Explorer Limited, 174k miles, no mechanical issues, runs and drives strong, straight body and paint, has things to fix like 2 power windows not working, new tires, new brakes, top console lamp not working, but good vehicle no leaks. VIN X

Or

Price $1,200- 1999 Ford Explorer Xlt, 4wd works great, 179k miles, everything works electrically, runs strong, straight body, new shocks, new tires, saw a couple of oil drips dripping and bottom center where it drips looks a little oily. Hasn't lost any power and still drives strong. Will also need an air conditioning condenser. VIN E

Which one would you buy and why? Thanks!
 


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shucker1

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Which engine in each one?
 




koda2000

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According to the VIN's the '95 is an OHV V6 and the '99 is a SOHC V6.

Tough call. I don't like the SOHC V6 but it's much newer than the OHV vehicle. Miles and price is fairly equal, but the '99 needs less repairs.

Personally I'd look for a V8. Probably a bit more money, but a lot more reliable vehicle. IMO the 99-01 Explorer V8's were about the best of the breed.
 




Maxcady

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According to the VIN's the '95 is an OHV V6 and the '99 is a SOHC V6.

Tough call. I don't like the SOHC V6 but it's much newer than the OHV vehicle. Miles and price is fairly equal, but the '99 needs less repairs.

Personally I'd look for a V8. Probably a bit more money, but a lot more reliable vehicle. IMO the 99-01 Explorer V8's were about the best of the breed.

Thanks for your response. You said the 99 needs less repairs? The 99 is the one that I noticed with oil dripping and oily on the bottom and needs the air conditioning condenser.

The 95 just has power window off track/regulator problems and dome lamp issues. This one was not leaking.

I would get v8 but don't want a gas guzzler
 




Maxcady

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Also, I thought The Vin X engines were easier to work on because easy access to engine parts, but still reliable.
 




Mbrooks420

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The 4.0 and the 5.0 have very similar MPG. If you are concerned about fuel efficiency I wouldn’t buy any Explorer. Both of those Explorers are probably due for major work if it hasn’t been done already. The SOHC is surely due for timing issues, and the OHV is likely about ready for head problems.
 




lobo411

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I'd keep looking. The 4.0 OHV is a fine engine but the 1995 is just too old. At that age, stuff starts breaking just because of old age (like a person). The broken power windows and dead overhead console are warning signs--the wiring gets to a point where it's just worn out, and you'll spend your life chasing electrical ghosts.

The 1999 has the SOHC, which is a notoriously bad engine. And air conditioning is like electrical work--you could plow tons of money into it and still never get it to work right.

Considering how many Explorers there are out there, I'd say keep looking.
 




Mbrooks420

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I’d say neither is a terrible deal IF they aren’t rusty, and you have the means and place to pull an engine and swap out major components like heads or tensioner set.

A v8 would still probably have the lowest cost of ownership after a year or two.
 




Maxcady

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Thanks for all your input!

From what I gather then, a v8 from 1999-2001 is a good way to go (at this price range because i am on a budget), based on engine maintenance and quality? Is this strictly for Explorers or does this include Expeditions and Escapes? Because I see those listed too.
 




Mbrooks420

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Expeditions have 2 different v8s, (4.6 and 5.4) that can have their own issues. The Escape has 4 and 6 cylinders. The 4 cylinder is fairly anemic, and the 3.0 duratec isn’t the most reliable drivetrain, but also not the worst. The escape will do much better fuel economy wise than the Explorer or Expedition.
 




Maxcady

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So, to narrow my search for a good used Explorer, should I look for a 1999-2001 with a v8?

Or, can I throw in any kind of v8 Expedition?

I am looking for a good reliable older Explorer/Expedition because my budget for now is under 2k. Those 1k ones were enticing but i don't want a money pit. Just something reliable where repairs won't break me.
 




Mbrooks420

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Any V8 Explorer 97-01 would be fine. There are some slight updates in the later years, but nothing worth bein a deal breaker. The 4.6/5.4 are both fairly reliable as long as there are no plugs issues with them.

The Expedition will use a considerable amount of fuel, but is helped by having a 2wd mode.
 




Maxcady

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Any V8 Explorer 97-01 would be fine. There are some slight updates in the later years, but nothing worth bein a deal breaker. The 4.6/5.4 are both fairly reliable as long as there are no plugs issues with them.

The Expedition will use a considerable amount of fuel, but is helped by having a 2wd mode.

Would you completely rule out all v6's or other Explorers before, say 2005?
 




Mbrooks420

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I’d buy a later OHV Explorer. They stopped using it before the 3rd gen platform, though.
 








koda2000

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I think 2001 was the last year for the OHV V6. The biggest issues you can run into with the OHV V6 is cracked heads and noisy lifters (which require the heads to be removed to replace). The OHV V6 is a much more reliable engine compared to the SOHC V6 and is fairly easy to work on, but is lower on power. All 3 engine choices get about the same fuel economy, which is to say poor. If you manage 15-17 MPG around town you're doing good.

As far as leaks, pretty much any 20-24 year old vehicle is going to have leaks, so unless the leaks are bad I wouldn't be too put off by a few minor oil leaks. If your budget is only $1000-$1200 you're not going to find a cream puff. Any vehicle that runs and drives is worth around $1200 and that doesn't include expensive repairs and things it will need (like tires).

If you are not capable of making your own repairs a $1000-$1200 vehicle is not a wise choice. Common repairs that will cost a DIY're $100 to do will cost you $300-$600 to pay a mechanic to do. Replacing the timing chain components on the SOHC V6 can cost over $2000+, because the engine must be removed from the vehicle. Both V6's use the same less reliable automatic transmission, which is also a $2000+ job. A complete front end rebuild will likely cost you $700. A fuel pump replacement may cost you $300+. A 4-wheel brake job can cost you $600. Electrical problems can be very labor intensive to tract down (and that's all labor). One member here recently paid $700 to have a $120 front wheel hub assembly replaced while he was on a trip.

I'm not trying to put you off on buying a Gen II Explorer, but please go into this with your eye's wide open. If you're not ready and capable off making your own repairs and want good fuel economy, save your money and buy something newer.
 




domct203

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If you are not capable of making your own repairs a $1000-$1200 vehicle is not a wise choice. Common repairs that will cost a DIY're $100 to do will cost you $300-$600 to pay a mechanic to do.

Agreed. I picked up a 3rd gen XLS on the cheap, knowing it needed ball joints, struts, & wheel bearings. I did all that myself for about what a mechanic wanted just to do the wheel bearing.

OP-are you a DIY’er with good tools? Do you have a garage to work in? Own a compressor?
 




410Fortune

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lots of good info in here

I would put my $$$$ into a 96-2001 5.0L V8 with under 200K miles on it
The 95 is a good truck but too old and the 4r55e transmission is going to fail in the next 30-50K miles
The 99 is not such a great truck with the oil leaks, troublesome SOHC engine and 5r55e automatic both on borrowed time

With the 96-01 V8 5.0L trucks you get the super reliable and tough pushrod 302 V8 AND you get a 1/2 ton auto transmission the 4r70w automatic a far superior platform when compared to the other offerings.

I would STICK with a 96-01 V8 also, forget about the Gen III trucks (2002+) and expeditions in this price range = nothing but problems

2000 was the last year for the OHV pushrod 4.0L, 1990-2000
 




J_C

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I would get v8 but don't want a gas guzzler

Are you going offroading (especially wanting a lift/kit), towing, hauling heavy loads? If none of these things then I'd get a 3.0L Escape.

Explorer V8 rated as 16MPG City / 22 Hwy, V6 rated as 18MPG City / 23 Hwy
Escape 23MPG City / 28 Hwy

Fuel economy differences between the V8 and V6 Explorer may be closer to 0 to 1 MPG difference, but there's no escaping the escape saving you around 2.5 cents per mile over the Explorer, or even more if most of your driving is city. For example driving 10K mi/year mostly highway, that's a ~$250 yearly difference in fuel consumption. Mostly city... double that?

The Escape is also going to ride and handle better (especially the Mazda Tribute version, though who knows what suspension work/changes have been done by now, years later) due to suspension differences, but that suspension won't handle loads nearly as well.

Here I'd also want a more rust free body on an Escape since it is unibody and depends on that for structural integrity, but here there's probably more salted snowy roads than in CA so rust damage eventually becomes inevitable.
 


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Maxcady

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Are you going offroading (especially wanting a lift/kit), towing, hauling heavy loads? If none of these things then I'd get a 3.0L Escape.

Explorer V8 rated as 16MPG City / 22 Hwy, V6 rated as 18MPG City / 23 Hwy
Escape 23MPG City / 28 Hwy

Fuel economy differences between the V8 and V6 Explorer may be closer to 0 to 1 MPG difference, but there's no escaping the escape saving you around 2.5 cents per mile over the Explorer, or even more if most of your driving is city. For example driving 10K mi/year that's a ~$250 yearly difference in fuel consumption.

The Escape is also going to ride and handle better (especially the Mazda Tribute version) due to suspension differences, but that suspension won't handle loads nearly as well.

Thanks. I haven't looked into Escapes. Do they have similar reliable engines as the Explorers?
 




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