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2003 Ford Explorer XLT: My mechanic..louder..mileage..common problem…

I just bought a 2003...
I just bought a 2003 Ford Explorer XLT with 106,000 miles. It has two problems that I have determined: (1) the rear-end makes a high-pitched whining noise when I get up to 50 mph and it increases in pitch until about 70mph when it either disappears or the pitch is so high I can't hear it. My mechanic told me the problem was fairly common with Explorers over 100,000 miles, and that it would need a new rear-end to solve the problem.
I can put up with it for now, but he warned me it would get louder with more mileage.
Does this sound like a common problem with Explorers, and should I go ahead and have a new rear-end installed. Otherwise, the truck runs great.

(2) The interior lights do not go off when I shut the doors. I read the manual, and the dimmer swith is supposed to be in the highest position (past the detent), but even at that position, they do not go off when I exit the truck unless I turn the dimmer switch all the way down past the lower detent. How do I fix this problem?
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Answered in 28 minutes by:
8/23/2010
Ford Mechanic: lostrider, Ford Technician replied 12 years ago
lostrider
lostrider, Ford Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 3,075
Experience: ASE Master Technician, Ford Senior Master Technician,Diesel certified, ASE Master, 22 yrs FORD exp.
Verified
Hi kyiarl5y this is lostrider, it is a common concern not just on the explorers, but other lines also with the 8.8 rear end, there is a service bulletin for this concern to replace the ring and pinion assembly in the rear axle, it may get louder, but it may stay the same also, what is causing the noise is the mesh between the ring gear and pinion is not within specifications, either too tight or too loose, and it you try to readjust it with that amount of miles on it will get worse and can cause further damage in the rear end, but if you can stand it for now, I would recommend letting it go, due to the fact is about $1200-$1500. to repair, now on the interior lights, you probly have a door ajar switch sticking, the switch is mounted inside the door on the latch assembly, get a can of WD 40 and open each door and spray into the latch, dont be scared to use some, then close and open the door about 10-20 times, do this for each door and see if the light concern goes away, if it does, good, if not then you need to have the system diagnosed and the bad switch replaced, hope this helps.
lostrider
lostrider, Ford Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 3,075
Experience: ASE Master Technician, Ford Senior Master Technician,Diesel certified, ASE Master, 22 yrs FORD exp.
Verified
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lostrider
lostrider, Ford Technician
Category: Ford
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