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Catastrophic Engine Failure on 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid

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Dear Mr. William Clay Ford, Jr. and Mr. Alan R. Mulally:

 

The Ford Motor Company 2006 Annual Report urges investors to "Fast Forward", while the 2008 Annual report touts that Ford Motor Company makes "More Products People Want". Although I am a Ford Mustang enthusiast (and owner of a classic 1965 Mustang 2+2), I am no longer a fan of the Ford Motor Company: their products or their brand.

 

In July 2006 I purchased a Ford Escape Hybrid: in my view, the 'perfect' vehicle for my family. Big enough, competitive vs other in its class, priced right, fuel efficient, environmentally friendly. Please "Fast Forward" with me to August 2009: My 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid experienced a catastrophic engine failure @ 65,000 miles while on the highway @ 65-70 mph with four occupants aboard. I don't know if it was skilled driving, divine intervention, or just plain luck that allowed me to safely stop the vehicle without injury or crash.

 

The repair bill from a Blue Oval and Hybrid certified dealership is $6500. Worse yet, because the vehicle has 65,000 miles, Ford is not interested in either learning what went wrong or providing any assistance for repairs. "Too Bad.", Ford says. "Out of Warranty." All of my attempts to engage Ford (The Customer Assistance Center, the zone manager at the repairing dealership, the zone manager at the selling dealership) have failed. Ford does not even provide the courtesy of a return phone call.

 

As of now, I no longer believe that Ford products are safe. I am thankful my immediate family was not killed in this incident. I've filed a complaint with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. As of now, I no longer believe my Ford Escape Hybrid is reliable: the remanufactured engine installed in my vehicle has a better warranty than the extended warranty on my vehicle. As of now, I no longer believe Ford products are competitively priced: when you factor a $6500 repair cost into the ownership equation. After only three years of ownership, competitive products in the same class as the Ford Escape begin to look very attractive. As of now, I am no longer a Ford enthusiast. As of now, I am telling my story to all of my friends and acquaintances, and urging them to think twice or three times before making a Ford product purchase decision. To a person, they are thankful my family was not hurt and appalled that a Ford Motor Company product would spectacularly fail - and Ford is not interested in learning from the incident or offering assistance for the repair.

 

I would ask the Ford Motor Company pay some attention to this customer. I would ask that the Ford Motor Company offer assistance for an extraordinarily expensive repair to a 'franchise' engine, so to speak, that failed with only 65,000 miles. "That should not be. The engine should not fail" sayeth mechanics and Ford enthusiasts I share this story with. Should not be, indeed.

 

--Dan

 

p.s.: Does anyone want to purchase a 1965 Ford Mustang 2+2 (fastback)? Less than 100K miles, 289 4V, Hurst shifter, Holly 750 carb. Red with black interior, Concours 2 condition. Sharp!

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Why did the engine fail?? What in the engine failed??? Do you have your maintainence records???? It seems odd that an engine would fail at only 65k.

 

Like most manufacturers today, Ford is adhering very strictly to the warranty that is on the car. You are way out of warranty.

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hate to say it, but doubt much will happen here...ever read about the 03 landrover engines grenading? guess they had a tendency for oil pumps to fall apart blowing on the highway by the time you pulled off the road without power brakes or steering and often a oil fire under the hood, cant give them things away...

never heard of Fords having these problems, but when the 5.4s started blowing plugs out of the heads in fairly high numbers, heard of a LOT of folks getting screwed on those...many would just say 'out of warranty', but thats BS- spark plugs aint supposed to blow out of a head for any reason...it was a flaw in the design, and I'm still suprised there hasnt been a class action suit over these (never had it happen to me, but know a few folks that it did...)

would be interested to see WHAT failed- did a crank snap? timing chain fail? crack/failed piston or rod? Valve retainer/stem failure? Did the engine catch fire/blow oil onto the exhaust?theres a lot of stuff that can destroy a engine, but 'catastrophic' dont tell anyone anything...were you cruising/passing/accelerating/decelerating? I had a fram oil filter crack right straight across the top once, on the highway, oil/smoke everywhere,got it off the highway- luckily before bearing failure...such a thing without the smoke though would most likely result in a blown motor- especially with the tight bearings used today and PM rods- but would a bad oil filter be fords fault? need more info :)

 

my 85 camaro sheared a governor gear and the wife drove it home(could be a blonde joke) 15 miles on the highway in first gear...amazingly it didnt suffer a 'catastrophic engine failure'- shoulda thrown a rod or melt the exhausts off of it(seriously- NO damage!) she just said 'theres something wrong with the car, it wont go very fast, had it to the floor all the way home and it sounded funny' or something like that...shoulda wrote GM a thankyou after that one- but the th700-r4 tranny in 85 was a total POS...I had it apart several times over 20 years/60K all for various stupid 'cheep component' problems.

 

find out WHAT failed, if its a ford component on a properly maintained engine, they *may* work with you on it, but you'll need to ask the right people in the right way...have heard of ford and gm splitting repair costs on out of warranty stuff occasionally...

 

if you want to be upset with ford, ask why 5.4s blew plugs, 3.8s blew head gaskets, 4.6 3v plugs twist off when removed, things like these that were kinda notorious to about every ford tech out there, yet went unchanged for quite a long time...ford did extend warranties on the plastic 4.6 manifolds, think they extended the 3.8 headgasket warranties too- but the sparkplug hole issues are still on the road. every manufacturer that makes millions of things will have a occasional 'oops', but got to know for certain if it was their mistake or someone elses before pointing fingers- not saying ford didnt 'oops' on your engine, just saying more info is needed before anyone can guess what happened or whose fault it was...

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QUOTE from the Hybid board he posted to:

My real issue is not the failed engine. I've had vehicles with poor history and expensive repairs before. However, in all of those cases, when out of warranty, the dealer and manufacturer were willing to examine what happened, examine the service history, and make a decision whether to assist with the repairs - or not. Most of the time, they have assisted due to my habit of 'over-maintaining' vehicles I own. Ford has not done this. Their Customer Service Center examined one fact: 65,000 miles, and concluded "Too bad. You're on your own". Whether you believe the vehicle is reliable - or not - do you want to experience this type of customer service long term?

 

I've had vehicles with poor history and expensive repairs before.

Really? How many times? Did you have the oil changed at the same Jiffy Lube?

I've had Fords since I was 16 (now 53) and have never had a Catastrophic engine failure, but then I've never gone to Jiffy Lube either.

 

Hee's 19 PAGES of complaints against Jiffy Lube.

http://www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/...ube_damage.html

"Over-maintained" at Jiffy Lube is an oxymoron......you're increasing your odds of disaster.

 

My dealerships (more than one, the selling one and the one closer to me) promise 30 minutes or less. If you'd brought it back to the selling dealer there may have been some "good will" with an out of warranty vehicle.

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I am curious as to what failed also. The 2.3 engine in your hybrid is no different than a ranger or focus except cams. The 2.3 has been a good trouble free motor. One reason I tell people to take your vehicle to dealer for oil changes and ofcourse your warranty work, is because they are more likely to assist you in such a incident. I would be interested in finding out what failed.

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I too would be interested to hear what happened to the engine.

 

Not to defend Ford, but this could very well be a case of an error on the part of a mechanic/technician.

 

Enginesdo not implode on their own "just because"

 

If this is a case where the vehicle has been maintained by some outside mechanic, Ford and the dealership could be insisting on putting the onus for the failure back on those parties.

 

 

Please do give us more information. Where and how often was the vehicle serviced? What was the exact diagnosis on the engine failure. What did the dealer tell you with regards to potential causes of this failure? Why did you not take this damaged engine back to the servicing mechanic when you were so far out of warranty?

 

 

This isn't about people doubting you or defending Ford. We all would like to truly help you, but need more information to be able to do so.

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More details, although not all details yet:

 

I have all maintenance records, including oil changes, on average, every 3400 miles. The longest interval between oil changes was 4,000 miles, or 20% better than Ford's recommended oil change interval. Pennzoil brand oil and recommended filter replacement every time - at the same (albeit non-Ford) shop every time. Every other recommended maintenance has been performed at or before recommended interval.

 

I do not have any info on what failed yet - the vehicle died 170 miles from home, and I expect to pick the vehicle up in the next week or so. When I purchased the vehicle, Ford extended the.. powertrain? warranty to 3 years / 60,000 miles, to match the warranty on the 2007 model year. So... the vehicle died one month and 8% over warranty 'limits'. Kudos to the Ford statistician who figured out what the warranty limits should be.

 

After I safely stopped the vehicle, I turned the vehicle off, waited about 50-Mississippi or so, then attempted to restart the vehicle. The engine sounded like you were stirring a wooden box of rocks. Clearly, a catastrophic engine event occurred.

 

Although I will confirm with the repairing dealer, I do not believe the engine was starved for oil. No oil evidence was inside the engine compartment, and no pool of oil was under the vehicle. The dipstick showed 'full'. I had NO NOTICE before the instrument panel lit up, with "Stop Safely NOW". I think something internal broke, destroying the engine, and the computer did not know what was going on before whatever broke, broke.

 

Although I understand that the Atkinson-style engine is implemented 'in cams', and the engine has a rock-solid and reliable reputation, I am dismayed that this engine is not covered by the additional hybrid warranty extensions on the transaxle, electric motor, batteries, computer. After all, Ford only uses Atkinson-style engines on their hybrid vehicles. (A mere technicality that I am learning about with a $6500 lesson)

 

I am also dismayed by Ford's refusal to even have a conversation with me. The emails I have received from Ford's Customer Assistance Center are surprising.

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More details, although not all details yet:

 

I have all maintenance records, including oil changes, on average, every 3400 miles. The longest interval between oil changes was 4,000 miles, or 20% better than Ford's recommended oil change interval. Pennzoil brand oil and recommended filter replacement every time - at the same (albeit non-Ford) shop every time. Every other recommended maintenance has been performed at or before recommended interval.

 

I do not have any info on what failed yet - the vehicle died 170 miles from home, and I expect to pick the vehicle up in the next week or so. When I purchased the vehicle, Ford extended the.. powertrain? warranty to 3 years / 60,000 miles, to match the warranty on the 2007 model year. So... the vehicle died one month and 8% over warranty 'limits'. Kudos to the Ford statistician who figured out what the warranty limits should be.

 

After I safely stopped the vehicle, I turned the vehicle off, waited about 50-Mississippi or so, then attempted to restart the vehicle. The engine sounded like you were stirring a wooden box of rocks. Clearly, a catastrophic engine event occurred.

 

Although I will confirm with the repairing dealer, I do not believe the engine was starved for oil. No oil evidence was inside the engine compartment, and no pool of oil was under the vehicle. The dipstick showed 'full'. I had NO NOTICE before the instrument panel lit up, with "Stop Safely NOW". I think something internal broke, destroying the engine, and the computer did not know what was going on before whatever broke, broke.

 

Although I understand that the Atkinson-style engine is implemented 'in cams', and the engine has a rock-solid and reliable reputation, I am dismayed that this engine is not covered by the additional hybrid warranty extensions on the transaxle, electric motor, batteries, computer. After all, Ford only uses Atkinson-style engines on their hybrid vehicles. (A mere technicality that I am learning about with a $6500 lesson)

 

I am also dismayed by Ford's refusal to even have a conversation with me. The emails I have received from Ford's Customer Assistance Center are surprising.

Dont expect much help if all the service was done somewhere else than a Ford dealer....shame on you as it gives them a place to point the finger...we have had cars from jiffy Lubes come in with WRONG FLUIDS ( clutch fluid in brake resevoirs )...funny, when theres a problem customers come bleating back to WHERE THEY SHOULD HAVE BEEN GOING IN THE FIRST PLACE! You would have had a MUCH better chance of ANY sort of assistance if you had done so from the get go...why should FORD back up an outside parties work or even investigate????? If you were counciled for a investigative job to pinpoint an issue would YOU want to be paid or just expect to do it for free??????? PS, no mechanic but wonder if the timing chain/ belt? went...........

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You have been sabotage by someone. :reading:

 

OTOH, what part of the warranty is confusing? The first 60K miles or the second 60K miles? :shades:

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Interesting story. Looks like you answered your own question why you probably won't get help. You stated that you did not trust a ford vehicle anymore...you fear for your family's safety in a Ford Vehicle...and you think Ford is not competitive anymore....and you are not a Ford enthusiast anymore...so throwing $6500 at you to pay your bill that you owe would all of a sudden "make your family safe" again,and make everything OK with Ford?...that wouldn't fly with me at all.

 

I think you will still talk about Ford like crap,and tell your story even if Ford pays your $6500 bill.

 

Dealers can fix your vehicle...but we can't fix you feelings.

Edited by ironhorse

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Interesting story. Looks like you answered your own question why you probably won't get help. You stated that you did not trust a ford vehicle anymore...you fear for your family's safety in a Ford Vehicle...and you think Ford is not competitive anymore....and you are not a Ford enthusiast anymore...so throwing $6500 at you to pay your bill that you owe would all of a sudden "make your family safe" again,and make everything OK with Ford?...that wouldn't fly with me at all.

 

I think you will still talk about Ford like crap,and tell your story even if Ford pays your $6500 bill.

 

Dealers can fix your vehicle...but we can't fix you feelings.

definitely did not trust Ford mechanics ( or was he just trying to save a few bucks ) so i wonder if ALL the routine maintenence WAS actually performed PER MANUFACTURERS REQUIREMENTS....also, whos to say TOO much oil on a regular basis was put into the car, which can ALSO be catastrophic long term....so many questions, but one straight answer, Ford makes the car, get FORD to do the service and your chances for help or answers to the afforementioned increase tenfold. Your lack of trust or scrimping may be the cause of your issue. Put it this way....say i save a few bucks on getting a room added to the house, then something goes wrong....so i call the more expensive EXPERTS for advice....why should they help? I dare say your engine WILL be sent back for factory diagnostics...but a dealer would NOT be paid for similar work.

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Just one mans opinion but I wouldnt use Pennzoil in my lawn mower.

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Just one mans opinion but I wouldnt use Pennzoil in my lawn mower.

 

Neither would I...and the HOA mows my yard for me!!

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Just one mans opinion but I wouldnt use Pennzoil in my lawn mower.

Castrol semi synth man myself, however, now that I am going BACK to domestics I will utilize what FORD recommends and upgrade to full synth after the first breakin period ( which for me is a oil change at 1000, then 3000, then 5000 then every 5 afterwards ) and hey, I'll even get it done at a Ford dealer...after all, who would know better than the actual MANUFACTURER of the car in the first place....

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The Motorcraft oils recommended for gas engines in cars and light trucks is a semi-synthetic. All my F150 ever gets is Motorcraft oil and filter. And yes it costs a little more but I do take it to the local Ford dealer, I mean why not they check and top off fluids as needed and give the truck a quick safety inspection at no additional charge... it's worth a couple of extra bucks.

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The Motorcraft oils recommended for gas engines in cars and light trucks is a semi-synthetic. All my F150 ever gets is Motorcraft oil and filter. And yes it costs a little more but I do take it to the local Ford dealer, I mean why not they check and top off fluids as needed and give the truck a quick safety inspection at no additional charge... it's worth a couple of extra bucks.

they are also ( hopefully ) atune NOT to overfill............plus, if everything is documented, if there IS an issue they are way more likely to step to the plate if the service has been done at a Ford dealer.......

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I own a Ford Contour 2.0 4 banger 1998, I bought it used from a Ford dealer in 2001 I pick it up the very day the Towers came down in NYC, how to forget....

 

Since then the car has been serviced at the dealer since I got a extended warranty and free oil changes for as long as I own the car.

 

About 2 years ago I noticed a "tick tick tick tick" noise coming from the engine in the morning it went away after a few minutes having the engine running.

The noise went unnoticed by the dealer mechanics and technicians, although they promptly suggested a flush in the cooling system and replace the power steering fluid.

 

The noise kept on worsening thru time to the point my friends started making fun of my car as having a diesel engine instead of gas.

I grew concerned on the issue an issue that had been going on for at least 2 years now.

I took the car to a mechanic since the extended warranty was already expired it turned out the crankshaft was broken, so broken the mechanic has no idea why the engine hadn't stalled already long time ago.

The diagnosis was a internal oil valve was clogged, hence the oil pressure was low and it damaged the insides of the cylinder head beyond reparation, so it had to be replaced with a rebuilt one, since Ford do not even make them any more.

 

There are a few questions roaming in my mind about the service at the Ford dealer, they never noticed an ongoing issue for the time it was being serviced there.

I understand from the business point of view my car was an expense instead of a way to make profit so they probably did not pay much attention to it.

Whatever the case was I'm astonished the engine never failed even being broken inside.

 

I could look at it in the negative way and say what a POS this engine is that broke at 135 000 kms ( approx 84 000 miles)

I could look at from the positive angle : wow this engine never left me on the road even being broken!!

 

All i'm saying is there is always two sides of one story

It depends of you what side you take and what do you do with it

I still love my 11 years old car maybe more than before because it has never let me down even being heartbroken so to speak

 

I think we all are human beings and so prompted to make mistakes and misjudge a situation for several reasons.

 

But if you talk to the right people at Ford, I'm sure you will get some type of help

It will take time and patience from your side since their job might have them busy

Be thankful that even with a catastrophic engine failure your Escape was able to stop safely and keep you and your family alive. Which at the end of the day it is what matters most.

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definitely did not trust Ford mechanics ( or was he just trying to save a few bucks ) so i wonder if ALL the routine maintenence WAS actually performed PER MANUFACTURERS REQUIREMENTS....also, whos to say TOO much oil on a regular basis was put into the car, which can ALSO be catastrophic long term....so many questions, but one straight answer, Ford makes the car, get FORD to do the service and your chances for help or answers to the afforementioned increase tenfold. Your lack of trust or scrimping may be the cause of your issue. Put it this way....say i save a few bucks on getting a room added to the house, then something goes wrong....so i call the more expensive EXPERTS for advice....why should they help? I dare say your engine WILL be sent back for factory diagnostics...but a dealer would NOT be paid for similar work.

 

 

Yep. Don't do any 15 minute oil change places...you are asking for trouble. At our place we have all Motorcraft fluids, filters, antifreeze, etc. Its just not worth it to just throw 10w30 in everything and use a cheap Fram filter. You don't have to go to the dealer for everything, but please find a reputable garage to go to.

 

Then again we did work on an Expedition a week ago. One of the items on the estimate was a transfer case service. Guess how much from the local dealer??? $108. $108 to remove the drain plug...empty fluid...and put a few pints new back in. HAHAHA...with prices like that can you blame someone for going elsewhere.

Edited by atomaro

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Yep. Don't do any 15 minute oil change places...you are asking for trouble. At our place we have all Motorcraft fluids, filters, antifreeze, etc. Its just not worth it to just throw 10w30 in everything and use a cheap Fram filter. You don't have to go to the dealer for everything, but please find a reputable garage to go to.

 

Then again we did work on an Expedition a week ago. One of the items on the estimate was a transfer case service. Guess how much from the local dealer??? $108. $108 to remove the drain plug...empty fluid...and put a few pints new back in. HAHAHA...with prices like that can you blame someone for going elsewhere.

beleive me....I know...BUT, dealers run specials all the time as well

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Stories like this are always difficult. The gentleman to whom this occurred went through a very tramatic event. One where he felt he and his family were in real danger. When something like that happens it's very hard to not to expect someone to step up and do the right thing. Reality is, had this caused an accident where injury had occurred I can guarantee you there would have been law suits filed with much more money at stake.

 

Nevertheless, these things do happen. I had a somewhat similar event when (don't laugh) I purchased a used Sonata for my daughter going off to college. The engine had recently been replaced when the timing belt failed at 52,000 miles. The car was in beautiful condition and hadn't been driven much since the owner had already purchased a new car. With Hyundai's vaunted 100,000 mile powertrain warranty I thought it was a good deal. Well... just a few weeks later, and 200 miles from home, the factory replacement engine self destructed. Guess what...That 100000 mile powertrain warranty does NOT transfer to new owners... hmm... well, at least they'd cover it like any other replacement engine right? Nope, it was past the 3 month limited warranty... Well, since we found out that the cause was a misaligned oil pump gasket wouldn't that be enough to cover it? Nope, not Hyundai, not the dealer who installed it, nobody..

 

I wasn't a lifetime Hyundai owner, nor even a customer of the dealer who installed the engine, and I ended up purchasing a motor from a wrecking yard with 3000 miles on it and had the dealer near where my daughter was in school install it. That repair cost me more than 1/2 the cost of the car!

 

In this gentleman's case, being the original owner of the vehicle I would have expected Ford, or maybe the original dealer, to step up too. Had he used the dealer for maintenace he likely would have had more of a relationship with them and likely more leverage, and they may have been more willing to pressure Ford. I don't know if that really would have made a difference... But, I can tell you the Toyota dealer in my town has done some pretty over-the-top service for issues my son (ASE Master Tech) has dealt with. That was the DEALER though, not Toyota, and they were hoping to keep a good customer happy.

 

BTW: I'm not in the market for Don's, but I wish I still had my 1965 Mustang, or my 67 or especially my 70 Mach I!

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while I understand the 'dealer service leverage', I still do mine at home...got a lift, no big deal, but I always prefill my filters, check inside for chips(have found metal chips in the threads before), only run the recommended motorcraft oil/filters in the mustangs, autolite filters/valvoline in the others, keep reciepts, write the stuff in the owners manuals, except the 65 galaxie- the manual is so old its about to fall apart :)

 

dont want to start a oil flame war that goes nowhere, but personally I would ask around- recommended motorcraft stuff HAS to be good(at the watery thin 5w20 viscosity used now, I'd be afraid to run anything but factory recommended!) and Ive never had any wear/sludge/whatever issues with good old valvoline- nor ever heard of anyone else...Castrol also has a very good reputation, but many years ago I heard a lot of bad comments on about every other brand from at least someone- mostly about quakerstate for varnish/sludge buildup, but typically all those bad raps probably stemmed from running oil too long and blaming on the oil- truth be told, they are probably all fine if used as intended...but just the same, I'll stick with Valvoline :)

 

I think it costs more most of the time to do service it at home, as some local dealers have cheap oil changes...Ive had a few bad cases of dealer service-not all dealers are incompetent, but stuff happens- usually to me. personally I cringe at the thought of taking my cars anywhere- theyre just cars, but if I screw it up its easier to take than when someone else does...one time in my life had dealer service brakes, a week later bad job=nearly a wreck. dealer 'alignment' after a warranty recall said they needed to reweld upper strut mounts to fix steering pull that wasnt there before the service- took to another shop, found alignment was ok- was a bad tire and they swapped sides, causing 90 degree steering wheel...swapped tire, no alignment(no welding either...). Fuel pump went out- dealer fixed- months later go to add washer fluid- no fusebox cover- "we didnt lose it", although they had it off to replace fuel pump fuse, theres more, but I type too slow.

 

one thing that bugs me, if a dealer screws up - they are independent franchises, ford is no help, 'call your dealer' might as well be a tape loop at the CRC phone number...but if a Ford vehicle fails, suddenly the dealer is important again...yeah I know they are required to meet standards, etc, but just about anyone knows someone who got poor service a a dealer- if that hybrids engine has adequate oil in it, and a recommended filter and the camshaft snaps in two without logging a redline event inthe computer, I would hope ford would look into it, wether the guy changed the oil at kmart or not...now if it looks like a bearing failure, then yeah, better look at the service history closely, but if something unrelated failed, its unrelated.

 

I bet there were folks that changed their own oil in 5.4s with factory sparkplugs blown out of the heads that got the same 'shoulda took it to the dealer for service' talk, when it would have had zero relation on a spark plug good for 100k put in at the factory...now if the guy swapped the plugs with wallmart ratchet, yes that would be a issue.

 

hard to say whats right...to me Ive got enough blind semi-faith that ford builds a decent engine(spark plug thread designs excepted) that I'll risk doing my own maintenance as much as possible, rather than let who knows who under it in who knows what kind of mood, after who knows what kind of night he had the day before...and if I break something its my own dumb fault, I'll fix it.

hopefully one of these days during a recall service or something I'll run across a great tech I would trust, but as the service writers kinda do all the talking and just take the keys to who knows where, its not the ideal thing to a lot of folks whose cars are more like pets than just a thing that gets you to and from work...

for folks that drive thru the quikielubes, dealer service is a 'luxury' their car dont deserve, to some folks get the cheepest wallmart has on sale and dump the old crap out back to save a couple dollars, but to others, get the best stuff you can, take extra time to do it without being rushed as you intend to have that car possibly the rest of your life- the latter is my perspective. if my mustang blows up will I be pissed at ford- probably as I know the thing was carefully taken care of, but still- its mechanical and stuff happens...but if they complain because I didnt drop it off to a stranger for oilchanges, I'll be very upset...but then again, how often do you hear of properly maintained vehicles blowing a engine? not often these days(again spark plug holes excepted) Sorry, just gotta give that little jab again for a problem that should not have been :)

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Lets all just remember that the mod spark plug issue is not a design flaw but improper recomended torque spec's. And not just from Ford but are recomemded torque specs for many aluminum headed engines from many manufactuers

 

 

As for the Escape. It sounds like a rod failure. Or more specifically a bearing failure leading to rod failure.

It could have been a rod bolt failure but those are extremly rare.

 

Yes it sucks it happend but these kind of instances are very rare and could happen to any engine from any manufacturer.

 

Yes it happend just off warrenty. That is unfortunet but no warrenty can plan for every instance and once your warrenty is up every one knows your now resposible for all repairs. And at what point does the goodwill of Ford end 1K? over 5K over ? 15K over the warrenty limit ? Lets be real here the truck broke and your upset that you had to pay to fix it.

 

This was not a design flaw but an isolated incident that to be honest has the same occurace rate of winning the lottery.

 

It is a peice of machinery and machinery can and does break. Should it have failed, no...but that does not mean it can not happen or will not happen.

 

Also since it was an internal engine failure better be sure to find out exactly what happend. You could be responsible for the actual failure with out even knowing it. Since you had the mait done somewhere other than the dealer are you sure the oil used met Ford's specifications ? Was it a synthetic oil used in the changes ? Did you pay extra for a synthetic ? These engines require a synthetic oil. The use of conventional motor oils will lead to premature engine failure. Did the Oil filters used meet Ford's minimum requirements ?

 

I belive you had the Oil Changes done not at the dealer and did not ask for a full synthetic or synthetic blend to be used. But If you used the same place for the Oil Changes you may have recourse against them for not putting the proper engine oil in the vehicle. As they are supposed to know what oil is to be used.

 

 

 

Matthew

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This story FAILS because the owner does not know what went wrong with the engine yet. @ 65K, there are ways to determine if it was bad maintenance or not, the question becomes who pays for the investigation. Ford or the dealer should make the offer that if it was a manufacturing error, they will pay for the investigation and the engine. If it was from bad maintenance, the customer pays for all.

 

I do expect any engine made today to go an absolute min of 100K (I do also usually buy the extended warantee, so I do not have to worry who will pay). If it turns out it was not the customers fault, then $6500 now is much cheaper than the loss of a customer forever?? (and whoever that customer convinces they are right). It does appear that so far, ford is not interested in who's fault the failure was. That would be disturbing to me personally if true, but honestly what I expect in my dealings with all car manufacturers/dealerships over the years.

 

As for maintenance, NO ONE does a better job than me. This is especially true on general maintenance, where I spend extreme amounts of time, going as far as using wooden blocks lifting the frames (in the correct spot) and not using air guns on lug nuts. No dealer will do this, they just don't have the time. Enthusiasts and car nuts know why I would though.

Edited by OX1

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Lets all just remember that the mod spark plug issue is not a design flaw but improper recomended torque spec's. And not just from Ford but are recomemded torque specs for many aluminum headed engines from many manufactuers

Matthew

 

Matthew,

dont want to hijack the thread, but...have heard of 5.4s blowing the factory original plugs, and have you seen the several TSBs for how to attempt to remove the plugs on the newer (fixed in 09) 3V heads...Sorry, but I think someone at Ford messed up- never heard of ANY other manufacturers or ANY other engine family either have plugs blow out, or have plugs snap off when trying to remove from even a 10k mile engine-if the snapping off problem werent a issue Ford would not have had to make special tools to extract the broken bits without pulling the heads(hopefully not leaving any porcelain shards in there).

 

*correction- the 3V issue might just be 90% crappy 2 piece plug design- but again it was a Ford design...the champion one piecers are a better idea, but are a piss-poor quality plug: I bought a set for 112.00 at summit, but after looking at them aint putting that crap in my engine- one of the 8 werent even threaded all the way up. I'm still hoping NGK or Autolite will make a decentquality one piece alternative, but as my cars approaching 30k now, the plugs in it will stay till 100k, unless I get that blower someday before then :)

Tim

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Matthew,

dont want to hijack the thread, but...have heard of 5.4s blowing the factory original plugs, and have you seen the several TSBs for how to attempt to remove the plugs on the newer (fixed in 09) 3V heads...Sorry, but I think someone at Ford messed up- never heard of ANY other manufacturers or ANY other engine family either have plugs blow out, or have plugs snap off when trying to remove from even a 10k mile engine-if the snapping off problem werent a issue Ford would not have had to make special tools to extract the broken bits without pulling the heads(hopefully not leaving any porcelain shards in there).

 

*correction- the 3V issue might just be 90% crappy 2 piece plug design- but again it was a Ford design...the champion one piecers are a better idea, but are a piss-poor quality plug: I bought a set for 112.00 at summit, but after looking at them aint putting that crap in my engine- one of the 8 werent even threaded all the way up. I'm still hoping NGK or Autolite will make a decentquality one piece alternative, but as my cars approaching 30k now, the plugs in it will stay till 100k, unless I get that blower someday before then :)

Tim

To an extent I agree. However, if you think other manufacturers don't have these kind of problems, you are mistaken. I personaly have repaired other vehicles with blown out plugs, one a chrysler and one a subaru. BTW the 3V plug issue is supposed to be corrected by 08. At first the plugs were a issue. Now not so much. Everything has a procedure. Follow the procedure and it works alot better. Ofcourse you will have that one vehicle that eats your lunch, but overall its not a big deal anymore. I agree that it would have been better to fix this issue during development. As far as the blown out plug issues, I think its all relative. Compare how many 5.4s are out there and compare the ones with no issues to the ones with. I am sure its a very small percentage. Most of the ones I have seen are due to plugs that have never been changed or ones that someone changed but not tightened. Overall since I've been at Ford, I have only really seen a handful.

 

One example I can give you as far as issues you never really hear about, is in the 90s BMW 7 series would come off the truck leaking oil. The front cover gasket would migrate during assembly and leak from day one. Plus, those cars had enough recalls to keep a skilled BMW tech busy all day on one car.

It just so happens, Fords issue is spark plugs, so its something that should be simple turned into difficult.

 

 

Edit: I forgot to mention GMs Northstar engine with threads pulling out the block causing headgasket failures. I actually thought that engine was a good engine, with the exception of drinking oil.

Ford isn't the only one with stupid designs and manufacturing defects.

Edited by fordtech1

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