Shaking and Check Engine Light Blinking


Asked by May 02, 2016 at 02:24 PM about the 2004 Ford Freestar

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

My Ford Freestar has started shaking while idling
and now even when driving. I noticed the RPM
gauge bounces up and down as well. Then just
recently my Check Engine Light has started
blinking. I went to AutoZone for a diagnostic and it
returned codes: P0171, P0316, and P0302. The
technician said he thought I may just need a tune-
up but everything I am reading makes it sound
much more urgent. Just would like to know anyone
else's thoughts before I take it into the shop. I saw
something that said it could be a vacuum hose leak.
Do you think it is possible based on the codes that
were returned? A friend who doesn't really have
experienced looked under the hood and said he
could hear some hissing, but couldn't find a hole.

5 Answers

Joe Vandervest

The P0171 is a lean code that could be caused by a vacuum leak, but that would not cause it to shake and the engine light to blink. The the shake and blink are mostly likely caused by the P0316 and P0302, which is a cylinder 2 misfire. A simple tune up could fix that, it could have a bad coil, or a more serious issue like low compression. I can't I would take it in to have it looked at asap. It is not good to drive it like that. The engine light flashing is a sign that it needs to be serviced immediately.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Sounds like you have a clogged muffler or catalytic converter.


Is it weird that my friend unplugged the battery for a while (to reset it - something he read online), and it's running a lot better now? The check engine light is now off and it's not shaking as badly (just a minor tremor is still present when in drive and shaking when applying brakes). The shop isn't ready for it for a couple days, and I'm wondering if I can/should be driving it. Hate for something more major to be going wrong.

Jessica Castillo

Did you find out what was going on? The same thing is happening to mine!


I own a 2005 Ford Freestar, and also feel the uncertainty of driving this minivan. Recently I have noticed that my minivan started acting up after a few days of heavy rain. Ford is aware of this issue, and for this reason they issued a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB 06-14-10.) Seems to be that a lot of the issues with this vehicle are related to this problem, water in the ECM. Once the ECM is waterproofed, then you can consider other minor problems like a bad sensor.

Your Answer

Add photo

Related Questions


Looking for a Used Freestar in your area?

CarGurus has 929 nationwide Freestar listings starting at $1,995.


Search Ford Freestar Questions

Ford Freestar Experts

#1 Tom Demyan
Tom Demyan
Reputation 340
#2 beartraxx33
Reputation 210
#3 FordNut
Reputation 170
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Chrysler Town & Country"
850 Great Deals out of 22,492 listings starting at $1,495
Used Ford Freestyle"
12 Great Deals out of 849 listings starting at $1,500
Used Honda Odyssey"
440 Great Deals out of 26,589 listings starting at $500
Used Dodge Grand Caravan"
438 Great Deals out of 30,370 listings starting at $1,650
Used Toyota Sienna"
394 Great Deals out of 25,817 listings starting at $600
Used Ford Windstar"
1,156 listings
Used Ford Focus"
1,209 Great Deals out of 57,459 listings starting at $1,495
Used Ford Explorer"
1,383 Great Deals out of 71,752 listings starting at $300
Used Dodge Caravan"
1,070 listings starting at $2,950
Used Kia Sedona"
174 Great Deals out of 9,754 listings starting at $2,500
Used Mercury Monterey"
188 listings starting at $1,500
Used Ford F-150"
3,243 Great Deals out of 216,706 listings starting at $1,000
Used Ford Taurus"
345 Great Deals out of 23,134 listings starting at $1,400
Used Chevrolet Suburban"
663 Great Deals out of 24,294 listings starting at $2,000
Used Nissan Quest"
105 Great Deals out of 3,642 listings starting at $2,900

Used Cars For Sale

2007 Ford Freestar For Sale
68 listings starting at $2,300
2006 Ford Freestar For Sale
196 listings starting at $2,999
2004 Ford Freestar For Sale
400 listings starting at $1,995