My 2010 Explorer has a high idle when starting it this winter. I kick it down and it quits but have been getting lower gas mileage and it seems to take forever for the motor and tranny to warm up.

Asked by Mar 13, 2017 at 07:50 PM about the 2010 Ford Explorer XLT 4WD

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

My Explorer has been running way different this winter. A
couple of months ago I was told the mechanic added 2
gallons of anti freeze. Where did it go? I never saw a leak at
anytime. My idle has been way high when starting it when it's
cold. I have been getting lower gas mileage all winter. I have
to have it warmed up before getting on the highway as it
doesn't seem to want to shift until the temperature is at
normal. My drive/overdrive has been goofy for the past few
months also.

11 Answers


If you where 2 gallons low on coolant, then the engine would have ben overheating. It only takes 2 gallons max to fill the system. Otherwise you may have a bad thermostat, replacing the thermostat may help the problem.

1 people found this helpful.

He said 2 jugs of coolant so I assumed 2 gallons. It never overheated which is why I was surprised when he said how much he added. I have been keeping a close eye on temperature and coolant level. Looked for leaks several different times but never saw any. Will try the thermostat! Thank you!


If you think you are loosing coolant, smell the exhaust. See if it has a sweet smell to it, and you would notice more white smoke coming out the tail pipe. This would be a head gasket.

1 people found this helpful.

I got the thermostat changed today and they cleaned a few things and no more high idle when starting it and seems to work great now! Am hoping that is the last time for having problems for a while as I love my Explorer! Didn't take anytime at all for it to warm up after I had let it sit for a couple of hours. Thank you for your help!


Your welcome.

Something still wasn't quite right so I took it to the Ford garage and after going through things, they are going to check for a stuck lifter. Hopefully soon it will get done and am hoping to not have anymore problems after this for at least a year. They did find a tiny hole at bottom of radiator but said to just keep an eye on it and to top it off every now and then.


So far so good, thanks for letting me know. There are oil additives to put in to try and loosen up sticky lifters. I hope they try that first as replacing the lifters would be expensive.

No stuck lifter. To check anything with the timing, they would have to remove the whole motor. Keep driving until something kicks a code.


Yea, if it aint broke, then don't fix it.

All in all this last year with this vehicle has been a pain in the butt when it started getting colder out again. This time though, I think we found both problems. The throttle body motor that had been cleaned several different times, started making a noise(grinding)under the hood quite often when cold but not after it had warmed up! I went in and hung outside in my vehicle while it cooled down completely for an hour and a half. Then when I started it and it did what it was doing, I got the mechanic and pin pointed the throttle body motor was the problem. It's over a $500 part, $600 to fix! On top of it though, my thermostat had to be replaced the next week as I wasn't aware the throttle body motor was what was affecting the thermostat. To the people where I have read several places about it feels like it's not shifting right and doesn't have much power when going up a hill and you think you might have a transmission problem, you don't. The same with if you think your clutch fan is a problem, I bet it's your thermostat. Mine quieted right down once the new one was put in. I noticed my shifting was great again too and am so happy to finally have it figured out. I never had this much problems with my Dodge Dakota but it did have some. My son told me to get a Honda! I have had 2 thermostats go out in a year and didn't realize they go so quick but hope next time it happens I know exactly what to do! And just because a part is expensive, the mechanic shouldn't have tried talking me out of figuring out what was going on with it, because this whole last year has been one, big, pain in the butt that was costly to my parents and time consuming and severely frustrating for me as my boyfriend suffered a stroke that killed him and they did lifesaving measures, so he has been recovering from that for 6-1/2 years. If we were to break down and have to walk during the winter, he wouldn't be able to. The mechanics now a days ought to be smart enough to figure these things without a code being thrown, as mine never wants to give one!

I had the rear pinion seal replaced for free by our landlord as he has done some before! It had always been a problem with it was going to leak at sometime, but they never knew when. It was during Thanksgiving. Good thingcwe had been prepared and had already planned on staying home. I am hoping this winter is problem free!

Your Answer:


Looking for a Used Explorer in your area?

CarGurus has 69,308 nationwide Explorer listings starting at $495.


Ford Explorer Experts

  • #1
  • #2
    Tom Demyan
  • #3
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Ford Expedition
373 Great Deals out of 21,011 listings starting at $1,900
Used Jeep Grand Cherokee
1,164 Great Deals out of 79,945 listings starting at $1,500
Used Ford F-150
2,258 Great Deals out of 183,135 listings starting at $1,200
Used Chevrolet Tahoe
661 Great Deals out of 37,633 listings starting at $1,950
Used GMC Acadia
454 Great Deals out of 31,940 listings starting at $3,500
Used Ford Edge
996 Great Deals out of 55,774 listings starting at $3,200
Used Dodge Durango
344 Great Deals out of 25,841 listings starting at $1,000
Used Chevrolet Traverse
440 Great Deals out of 30,560 listings starting at $2,995
Used Toyota Highlander
402 Great Deals out of 49,682 listings starting at $1,499
Used Toyota 4Runner
266 Great Deals out of 32,942 listings starting at $1,900
Used Honda Pilot
372 Great Deals out of 45,784 listings starting at $1,995
Used Ford Escape
1,241 Great Deals out of 94,132 listings starting at $975
Used Nissan Pathfinder
369 Great Deals out of 21,876 listings starting at $1,395
Used GMC Yukon
326 Great Deals out of 23,705 listings starting at $2,000
Used Ford Mustang
359 Great Deals out of 38,491 listings starting at $1,995

Used Cars For Sale

2016 Ford Explorer XLT 4WD For Sale
59 Great Deals out of 1,684 listings starting at $16,999
2015 Ford Explorer XLT 4WD For Sale
123 Great Deals out of 2,637 listings starting at $13,599
2014 Ford Explorer XLT 4WD For Sale
23 Great Deals out of 758 listings starting at $10,990

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.