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Ford Freestar Transmission Problems

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Comments

  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    After the way they have handled the Freestar situation, I am no longer a Ford customer. Too bad. I have been a Ford loyalist my whole life and they just threw it away like it didn't even matter and I was replaceable. Well, I am no MBA but I'm pretty sure that this is not the way to conduct business or build a loyal customer base. What a bunch of losers. I hope Ford goes down in flames. In the meantime, as soon as I get my Freestar and my F150 sold, I will be purchasing a Toyota Sienna for my wife and kids and a Toyota Tundra for myself. I know for a fcat that Toyota has stood behind their product because I have friends who own them and would never buy anything else.
  • skihighskihigh Posts: 15
    Wow! I am still at a loss... why can't anybody diagnosis this thing?
    I have 2004 Ford Freestar. Around Christmas last year it started acting up. Almost acted like it wasn't getting gas. I stopped a couple different times while the check engine light was on & got different codes. It ran fine for a while, & then would act up. Of course, it would never act up for the mechanic. I finally managed to call my (Goodyear) mechanic & long time friend while it was making that ungodly high pitch noise some of you spoke of. He immediately said it was the "crank shaft sensor". We replaced it ($200). All seemed well. Almost a year later, it started it again. We assumed it was the same part? But he adjusted it, it seemed to do the trick. Had trouble again. They did a full diagnosic scan. Goodyear referred it to a transmission specialist because they were stumped. The transmission shop replaced "sensor trans oil temp axode" & "temp sensor to transmission". That seemed to do the trick. I got it back on a Wednesday, that Saturday it acted up. It would not take off in drive. We had to manually shift it & baby it home. The next day it ran fine & has ran fine for about a month. I leave for work tonight & can not get it to move in reverse! I am struggling to make the payments on this thing & still have many more to go. I can not afford repairs. I am at a loss of what to do?
  • rae4kmarae4kma Posts: 4
    They actually ended up doing right by me. Since I had proof that I had the transmission serviced at 22K they couldn't blame me for lack of maintenance. They rebuilt the transmission (which I am leery about cause I am worried about the same problem happening again). But they had it a week and gave me a Toyota 4 Runner brand new to drive in the mean time, free. I wanted to keep it!!!!!!! They ended up being really cool about everything and even fixed something on the Wheel berring free of charge. I was shocked and impressed by there good service. Maybe it is the good old southern way.... I am outside of Nashville, TN.

    I hope you all have the good luck that I did. :blush:
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    You are lucky. I have proof that my transmission is NOT THE ONE THAT MY MANUAL SAID NEEDED THE SERVICE YET, THEY STILL WOULDN"T HELP ME OUT. They even lied, in writing, to the Office of the Attorney General in my state of Maryland about this issue. Consider yourself lucky and let us know how the repair holds up.
    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • I have a 2004 Freestar, bought in Spring 2005. The transmission was replaced at aroud 70,000 miles, costing about $3,200. Less than 10 months and only 13,000 miles later, I started noticing a "shuttering" between high and overdrive. This lasted for about a second, but became quite frequent. It took several days before the Ford dealer was able to "replicate" the problem, but they finally said they did.

    Their first statement to me was that it was the torque converter. However, after further investigating, they told me that the CAMSHAFT SYNCHRONIZER and CAMSHAFT BEARINGS needed replacing, adding that the problem was showing up through the transmission, but it wasn't a transmission problem. Cost to me for this repair will be around $700.

    I will be picking the van up shortly. I'm wondering if Ford has finally realized where the problem originates, or is this just a snipe hunt that I've gotten dragged into.
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    It will be interesting to hear what happens. by the way, did you report the original torque converter failure to NHTSA? They say they don't reuire a specific number of reports to initiate an investigation but I don't believe them so, if you have a minute, please go to their websiteand lodge your complaint. The site is fairly user friendly but it will take a few minutes of your time. The way I see it, every report that they get is going to be one more bit of evidence that they neglected their duty to the consumer by not at least investigating this issue before somebody gets killed due to one of these failures that FORD KNOWS WILL HAPPEN.
  • skihighskihigh Posts: 15
    well, I fired off an e-mail to Ford explaining everything. I got a reply back saying they needed more information? What more did they need? They had my personal info, vehicle info (including VIN#), the history of problems & repairs & my personal feelings on it (including all the complaints that I have recently read). They said they needed a brief description of the type of assistance you are seeking. HELLO! I was throuroughly irrate at this point & responded with:
    What MORE information do you need? I have a LEMON that is broke down & I would LIKE for someone to tell me what is wrong with it!!! I am assuming this is was an automated response & a live person never bothered to read that I am VERY upset!
    well... then I did get an automated response saying they received my e-mail & that someone would respond within 2 days.
    Yesterday I had called the dealership too. The service department was very short "uh-huh" was all that was ever answered. Then he asked if I would like to make an appointment. I told him I would have to figure out how to get it there since I can't drive it. They were so nice as to give me a great rate of only $85+ tax to do the computer diagnostic this time!!!
  • skihighskihigh Posts: 15
    I did add my info to NHTSA.gov per recommendation from another website I was visiting. I was one of only 37 though. I don't know how many they need to warrant an investigation on a recall? I can't believe w/ all these compaints I have read all over the internet that more people have not done so.
  • I should have added in my post above that after returning from a one-week vacation with the Freestar, where I was experiencing the oft "shuddering", I started to get a loud squealing noise upon first start-up, that lessened and became intermittent. This is what the Ford Service Department finally started hearing when they were trying to replicate my shuddering problem. The squealing, they said, was what led them to believe that the cam bearings and cam synchronizers were bad.
    They still haven't finished working on it, but I'll let you know if I experience any more problems.
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    I know it is frustrating to see "Only 37" complaints on the NHTSA site however; statistically, those 37 likely represent THOUSANDS that have gone unreported to NHTSA. The bad part is this, NHTSA KNOWS THIS! The other bad part is that these are 37 instances where the lives of the drivers and their passengers, likely women and children as these are family vehicles, were needlessly placed in harms way. In fact, I would be willing to bet that people have already died as a result of this defect but it just hasn't been linked as the cause yet. Statistically speaking, this is a highly likely probabilility. Our job is to continue to educate everyone we know and even people we don't know about this issue until Ford and NHTSA get up off of their cowardly, lazy behinds and address this issue.
    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • I picked up my Freestar last night, and they did NOT replace the camshaft bearings, but they did replace the cam synchronizer and sensor. This was supposedly the cause of the intermittant shuddering at around 2000rpms. I'll keep you posted if the shuddering reappears.
  • I've read most of the 265 postings and went to the websites for NHTSA and Center for Car Safety. Last night I pulled out and traffic and could not accelerate (as with many - no warning), it was after 11 PM and the dealership does not have night drop so we are now responsible for two tow charges, in addition to the charges for the repair as the van is 5,000 miles out of warranty. At any rate, I was able to coast into a gas station and got help pushing the van into a clear area. I was not able to go forward or in reverse. First I thought I was imaging the problem and then was scared at the thoughts of what could have happened. As I post this message, our van is at the dealership. We are waiting on the diagnosis. Not being mechanically inclined, after reading what I have I am convinced we will fall into the same group with regard to transmission problems and thousands in repair costs. I am frustrated, dismayed and believe that we will hear the same song and dance so many have heard. In researching NHTSA, the total of complaints is 74 from 2004, 2005 & 2006 Freestar owners. How many is needed for a class action case? It may be a long shot but maybe there are forums that would help publicize the need for more people to register complaints, such as the media forums many of you have engaged. Here in West Palm Beach we have a local TV station that has a division called "Contact 5." Once we have an idea what we are dealing with I will be in contact with them - at least it's worth a try. I will also be posting a complaint with the NHTSA, again after the official diagnosis. Thanks to all of you who have taken the time to post.
    Sue
    West Palm Beach, FL
  • rae4kmarae4kma Posts: 4
    I don't have a shuddering noise it is a high pitch squeal/whistle. The Service Dept mentioned it when I had the Trani rebuilt and mentioned that it was probably a berring. I am not sure, it would make an annoying noise and when I pushed on the brake it would stop, but my brake pads and roters (sp) were fine. I had rear brake issues and rotar problems at 24K miles. My back brakes were metal to metal and the front ones were only 1/8" worn and it is a front wheel drive car. Damaged the rotars cost me $1000!! I thought that was ridiculous to happen at 24K miles... and then the Trani at 40K I am not sure what the berring issue is... if that is even what it is. I have had a rental since Tuesday and they have not called me and told me the issue yet.... I hope it is nothing big... 2 bad I owe $5000 more than it is worth... cause I want out of it!!
  • amsternamstern Posts: 5
    Sorry to hear this. What year is your Freestar? What engine do you have? Is yours an automatic transmission?
  • sunburnsunburn Posts: 319
    We had the same problems with the brakes on our 04 Freestar. The rear brakes were shot at 42K and the front brakes were hardly worn. This is not typical of FWD vehicles.
  • rae4kmarae4kma Posts: 4
    I said the same thing that that was totally ludicrious that brakes and rotars would be shot at 24,000 miles!! I hardly ever drive my car. All in town driving... very small town... WHo knows.... I am just glad they are taking care of it. I have been in a rental a Toyota Camry for 5 days and I am loving it. Ford is paying for it. I so want a smaller foreign (sorry :( ) car now. I had a Honda Civic, a Acura Integra GSR and a VW Jetta and this is my 1st American car and I never had any problems with my others.... so to me this tells me something..... sadly
  • 2004 Freestar. Current mileage: 83,000 miles.
    After getting the camshaft synchronizer replaced, we continue to have "shuddering" problems. After removing the transmission pan, metal shavings were found. Rather than tear apart the transmission, the Ford dealer has ordered a new transmission to be installed. This is the second New transmission installed in less than one year.
    In regards to brakes... I also replaced my rear brake rotors after I discovered that the right-rear caliper was frozen. This was done at 50,000 miles, but who knows how long it needed replacing. This did not cost me $1,000, as I did all the work myself. But, it was when the van was only ONE YEAR OLD. Being a newly-introduced vehicle, I had a heck of a time locating replacement parts. I think my total outlay was less than $200 for new caliper, rotors and pads. Not covered under warrenty because mileage was already 50,000 miles.
  • johnsevjohnsev Posts: 4
    Complete loss of transmission. The vehicle just had no trans. Pressed on the gas and did not go so I put it in park, rev, 1,2,D Nothing. I had it towed to the dealer. The first response is about a throttle switch and then possible new transmission. I was very skeptical as there was no warning, no sound, no shudder, no other problems that are typical with a dying piece of machinery. I got online to do some research and much to my dissmay, here I am. I guess we are lucky this happened at 99 and not 55. Of course the extended warranty only went to 80 so we are out of luck. I'll let you know what happens and register a complaint at NHSTA.
  • amsternamstern Posts: 5
    You didn't mention what year your Freestar is. I was curious.
    Thanks.
    We have a 2004 which we bought used. It had almost 100,000 miles on it. We just replaced the transmission.
    Thanks.
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    Hey everybody! long time no hear but get this... go to corporateabuse.net and look at the article on the Freestar and the other Ford products w/ the same issues. Its a great article and a good start toward getting Ford to step up and take responsibility for this issue before somebody gets killed in one of these things.
    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
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