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The redesigned for 2004 Ford F-150 represents a significant improvement over the previous model. It rides more comfortably, handles more nimbly, and has a quieter interior with better fit and finish. Movable overhead storage consoles and an optional power sliding rear window are nice additions. The F-150's powertrain delivers reasonable acceleration and fuel economy for the class.
Alerts
There are 14 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit,
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
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Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
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Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS available, standard from 2001. ESC standard from 2009.
Road Test

The redesigned for 2004 Ford F-150 represents a significant improvement over the previous model. It rides more comfortably, handles more nimbly, and has a quieter interior with better fit and finish. Movable overhead storage consoles and an optional power sliding rear window are nice additions. The F-150's powertrain delivers reasonable acceleration and fuel economy for the class.

Seating
3 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
4WD , Rear
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
extended cab
regular cab
crew cab
Transmissions Available
  • 5-speed Manual
  • 4-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 4.2-liter V6 (202 hp)
  • 4.6-liter V8 (248 hp)
  • 5.4-liter V8 (300 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2005 Ford F-150 owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

“Lost .. came off.. top rail trim on right rear on highway”

Anonymous, AZ (2005 Ford F-150 XL 4.2-L V6)

“Clear coat cracking on front of hood”

John S., AL (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)

“The paint coat was treated and maintained to prevent any deterioration. However, paint is peeling away from the primer coat on the roof top near the doors, hood, and numerous locations under the hood and in the engine compartment”

Rocky B., CA (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“the paint on the roof is peeling. But this auto is not garaged”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“Protective layer over paint continues to peel off”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“The paint on the hood turned extremely dull and then started to flake off just this year. There is no rust. It has not been a problem prior. The rest of the body and paint are solid”

Michael F., MD (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)

“The paint is pealing inside the truck bed and some on the outside of the rear of the truck”

Anonymous, AZ (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)
Rust

“Bumper/s had a lot of rust”

Anonymous, MA (2005 Ford F-150 XL 4.2-L V6)

“startiing to show rust on lower quarter panel doors and fenders”

Anonymous, MN (2005 Ford F-150 XL 5.4-L V8)

“Serious body rust on bottom rear of cab required repairs costing $1750”

Anonymous, MO (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“Cab corners rusted out.Should have been rust proofed at factory”

Anonymous, MN (2005 Ford F-150 XL 5.4-L V8)

“side steps had rusted underneath and had to purchase new bars and have new brackets welded to the frame and then painted”

Bonnie H., PA (2005 Ford F-150 Unsure 4.2-L V6)

“The body has rusted out behind the backseat door panel. Ford has told me this is a regular problem with their F-150's of this era because water gets trapped behind the metal and rusts from the inside out. This started to occur after the warranty period”

Anonymous, IA (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“Rocker panels and cab corners rusting out”

Anonymous, MO (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“I had rust holes show up on both fear cab corners last year. This year I had rust coming through both exterior side panels on the bed around the gas tank filler neck and taillights area”

Christopher B., VT (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

“warning light on”

Anonymous, MD (2005 Ford F-150 XL 4.2-L V6)

“Left front caliper would chronically not fully release and would drag on rotor causing excessive heat and wear”

Bryan F., OH (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)

“Calipers in front failed and locked up”

Anonymous, MN (2005 Ford F-150 XL 5.4-L V8)

“Rear calipers got bound up, caused break wear, excessive heat, cracked rotor”

Troy B., NY (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)

“Wore out Had to be replaced”

Anonymous, MO (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“Failed prematurely”

Anonymous, PA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)
Parking brake

“The parking brake sensor light has been on for a year. The sensor is bad. My mechanic says it is not necessary to replace if I don't mind the light”

Phil B., IN (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“Can not get the parking brake fixed correctly”

John K., OH (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“They have not failed...however rear rotors need to be replaced and/or resurfaced. Only 40,000 miles”

Anonymous, WA (2005 Ford F-150 STX 4.5-L V8)

“Had to be replaced they were worn”

Anonymous, MO (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“Rear brake Rotors and Brake pads are in need of replacement and/or resurfacing”

Anonymous, WA (2005 Ford F-150 STX 4.5-L V8)

“The brakes need to be renewed, but the rotors are deeply worn (not from bad pads),”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“Dealership found and fixed issue before I purchased truck”

Anonymous, MO (2005 Ford F-150 Unsure Unsure)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Transmission rebuild or replacement

“Vehicle was making a humming noise that wasn't getting any better,took it to a couple of shops both were telling me the same answer.trans need to be replaced”

Anonymous, DE (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“Third transmission on this F 150”

Anonymous, SC (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“transmission failed and had rebuilt transmission installed”

Anonymous, ID (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“At 101,000 the transmission started slipping. The transmission shop that I use tested it and said it definitely needed rebuilding or replaced. I replaced it with a factory rebuilt with a 10 year warranty. The shop also commented they had seen several with the 4.6 liter V-8 motor have this same problem at about 100,000 miles”

Anonymous, TN (2005 Ford F-150 STX 4.5-L V8)

“Would not shift to reverse”

Tom A., TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“Transmission went out, had a new transmission from Ford put in”

Larry P., GA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

“light came on went to auto shop hook compur find the problem”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)
Fuel injection system

“Driver module on axle corroded and failed”

Anonymous, PA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)
Fuel pump

“went out and left me stranded”

Anonymous, PA (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)
Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

“Check engine light”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 4.5-L V8)

“Second O2 sensor replaced in 3 years”

Anonymous, KS (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 4.5-L V8)

“Sensor is part of electrical system within fuel system that went bad due to age”

Anonymous, OH (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

What Owners Say

Cylinder head

“Rt manifold cracked”

Anonymous, BC (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“Lost oil pressure and damaged three rods and valves when the motor jumped time. Decided to have the motor rebuilt”

Steve M., FL (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)

“Faulty fuel injector caused major engine failure. This was a problem known by Ford, but they only extended the warranty on it until 120000 miles versus replacing the faulty injectors. The injectors failed at 121400 miles. Replaced engine with a new Jasper 5.4L v-8”

Alan C., VA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)
Timing belt or chain

“Variable valve timing warnings”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 King Ranch 5.4-L V8)

“Poorly designed overhead cam engine - way to complex with a fuel mpg at 10 -11. Components self destruct at apx 200,000 miles with a $3000.00 repair bill to correct”

Jerry C., MI (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Alternator

“This was 3rd replacement alternator”

Anonymous, OH (2005 Ford F-150 Unsure Unsure)

“misfire”

Anonymous, OK (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“The engine would "buck".Turned out to be a problem with 2 of my "coil on plugs"”

Anonymous, NJ (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)

“Another poor design with a bill of $400.00 to change plugs which are another $100.00”

Jerry C., MI (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“Multiple and routine failure of the coil-over-plug for the V8 engine. At failure, the truck cannot be driven safely. Diagnostic and replacement part are expensive. 4 times total, 2 times in less than 7 months”

Bill B., VA (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

“This is the second time I have replaced Ball Joints on this vehicle. Expected them to be more durable on a truck”

Troy B., NY (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)
Shocks or struts

“They said this caused my cupping. We will see”

Anonymous, IN (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“A steering shaft was worn requiring replacement”

Anonymous, VT (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)
Tire wear is uneven

“Cupping. Replaced shocks and a ton of stuff”

Anonymous, IN (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

“Engine as ongoing engine noise which we have been told by mechanics is common with Ford, but Ford has never resolved”

Anonymous, OH (2005 Ford F-150 Unsure Unsure)

“Has always been loud when you start the truck”

Anonymous, BC (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“The cam bearings and rollers on both sides of the engine are bad”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“Small oil leak around the engine block”

Anonymous, WI (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

“Persistent water leak on driver side. 1-2 cups of water collects in the wiring harness channel until vacuumed out. Soaks the carpets. Suspect the exterior weather seals have shrank too much”

Bill B., VA (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

“noisy”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“Weatherstripping on drivers side has partially peeled off and trim rattles”

Anonymous, NC (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 4.2-L V6)

“A leak occurred allowing rain water into the cab via the electrical cable running from the engine compartment through the door”

Darlow T., OR (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

CD player

“The 6 CD MP3 player is an upgraded playing system. Typically used only the #1 CD Slot unless on a long trip, which only three were taken. During last trip the CD player locked up with 3 CD's and would not play whatsoever. However, the AM/FM radio continued to work. Have discovered the 6 CD player is known to be a failing system and have uninstalled two identical CD players which resulted in identical failures. Extremely poor unit for the additional incurred cost!”

Rocky B., CA (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“Won't eject CD”

Anonymous, NC (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)
Radio

“When changing/cleaning the window sensors (?) In the door the radio went out. He believes the codes have to be reset”

Anonymous, GA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“Radio would no longer stay on a station. Had to replace”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

“2 gauges went out. Oil pressure and oil temp”

Anonymous, GA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

“Radio and interior lights remain powered when exiting the vehicle with key removed and engine off. They remain on until the battery drain system turns off the power. I am told it is a corroded junction in a wire under the door sill”

Anonymous, TN (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)

“door ajar light constantly on”

Anonymous, GA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

4WD/AWD components

“Vacuum hose(s) leaked, causing 4wd low to engage when vehicle in motion and gears to grind”

Paul E., ND (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)
Differential

“Its developed a small leak and needs to have a seal replaced”

Rolf S., WA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“I have had to have the differential replaced twice, and now the cam bearings and roller on both side are bad”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

“The cheap mounting bracket that held the rear view mirror on was always loose and broke off on a bumpy section off road”

Christopher B., VT (2005 Ford F-150 Lariat 5.4-L V8)
Windows

“The driver window will nor always go back up after letting it diw. The passenger window can be let down but the driver has to let it back up”

Anonymous, GA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“Passenger side window just falls down and you cannot get it back up without taking the entire door apart”

B H., CA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Exhaust manifold

“Exhaust leaks from manifold required replacement”

Anonymous, VT (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

“exhaust bolts broke off”

Dean D., WI (2005 Ford F-150 FX4 5.4-L V8)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

“Leaked coolant”

Anonymous, TX (2005 Ford F-150 XL 5.4-L V8)

“I had the refrigerant replaced 3 years ago, but over that time the coolant has leaked out. I will be scheduling an appointment to find the leak and replace the coolant”

Bob R., MN (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 5.4-L V8)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Slipping transmission

“Problems shifting”

Anonymous, LA (2005 Ford F-150 XLT 4.5-L V8)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

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