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Lincoln Navigator Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the Lincoln Navigator based on complaints from actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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20
Known Problems

The 2008-2014 Lincoln Navigator and Navigator L with manual temperature and fan controls may have problems with the the blower motor only blowing air on certain settings. Most commonly the fan will only run on the highest setting. This is a well documented problem, and is caused by a failing blower motor resistor.

Correcting the problem is straight forward, and requires replacement of the small resistor. The resistor is normally found behind the glove box, next to the blower motor.

Prior to jacking or lifting a vehicle with air suspension, you must turn off the suspension switch. The switch is generally located in the trunk or on the right side of the passenger foot well.

The Lincoln Navigator is known for displaying the normal symptoms of a coolant leak, including overheating, the strong smell of coolant from the engine, and illumination of the low engine coolant warning light, without any visual signs of coolant leakage. 

This leak is difficult to locate as it is buried underneath the intake manifold, and only begins to leak coolant onto the ground in advanced stages of disrepair. This leak springs from the heater tube, which allows coolant to flow between the water pump and HVAC heater core

When the connection for this tube begins to leak, the coolant burns on the hot engine, and produces a sweet smell that is unmistakably engine coolant. 

The remedy can be complicated, and will necessitate removal of the intake manifold, heater tube, and possibly the water pump. After removal of these items, the connector may be replaced, or a set of o-rings, depending on the year of the vehicle. 

Spark plugs in the Lincoln Navigator can be very difficult to remove.

Ford has issued a service bulletin (08-7-6) to address this issue, which includes a recommended procedure on how to remove the plugs. Failure to follow the recommended procedure can result in the one or more spark plugs breaking off in the cylinder head.

The recommend procedure is as follows. Using this procedure will greatly reduce the chance of breaking a spark plug.

1. Break the spark plugs loose when the engine is warm.
2. Turn each plug 1/8 to 1/4 turn and soak the treads with 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon of Motorcraft Carburetor Tune-Up Cleaner or a quality penetrating oil. Do not try to remove the plugs at this time.
3. Let the threads soak for at least 15 minutes.
4. After the soak period, tighten and loosen each spark plug, working it back and forth until the turning effort is reduced. Then, you can remove the spark plug.

There are special tools available to remove the broken spark plugs and repair shops will often charge additional labor for the removal of each broken spark plug.

In high dust areas, problems with the EGR system are common. The filter for the EGR solenoid may plug and cause the EGR to activate when it should not; this can cause the engine to stall. The dirty filter should be replaced to correct this concern.

The Lincoln Navigator with optional automatic temperature control may have a problem with frequent fan speed changes when using the heater or air conditioner. Normally, the fan speed changes only to maintain a selected temperature, but when the fan speed changes frequently and needlessly, there is an issue with the fan speed control unit. 

The fan speed control unit, sometimes erroneously called the blower motor resister, regulates the speed for the blower motor in order to maintain the temperature set by the driver. When it fails, the fan will run at random settings, and the climate control will be inaccurate.

Note: this does not affect the temperature of the air that comes from the vents, it affects the amount of air that comes from the vents. 

The repair is simple, and quick. The control unit is located behind the glove box in most models, and removal and installation takes only minutes.

Also note: this only applies to vehicles with single or dual automatic climate control.

A vacuum leak from the PCV grommet vacuum leak can cause the Check Engine Light to illuminate. The molded rubber hose connections may crack and collapse, causing the vehicle to run roughly. A damaged PCV hose will require replacement.

Check the battery cable ends frequently for corrosion. Corrosion can easily migrate under the cable insulation and cause numerous electrical faults and drivability issues.

An illuminated Check Engine Light may be caused by an engine misfire due to water or engine coolant in the spark plug recesses.

Checking and adjusting the AC compressor clutch air gap can extend the service life of the AC compressor.

You may be able to prevent transmission problems by servicing the transmission and inspecting the fluid every 15,000 to 30,000 miles. If the fluid is dark or burned then the transmission fluid should be changed.

Do not use air filters with oil-coated elements. They may cause premature failure of the mass air flow sensor; this is not covered under the warranty.

Due to age and possible damage during removal, it is recommended to replace  the spark plug boots when replacing the spark plugs,

Even though the manufacturer does not call for regular servicing, our technicians recommend servicing the power steering fluid regularly.

An exhaust leak may develop in front of the catalytic converter. This type of leak should be corrected as soon a possible to avoid damaging the catalytic converter.