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Ford Freestar Transmission Problems

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Comments

  • turtle45turtle45 Posts: 4
    My wife bought a 2004 freestar brand new and has been nothing but problems since. It has been in the shop a half dozen times and hundreds of dollars later it still isn't right. Last nite we were a mile from home and the tranny went out again. Tired of putting more and more money into something that Ford can't build right. I emailed Ford and told them what they could do with their company and their Freestars. I should of traded it in 2 months ago like we planned
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    Well, mine is back in at the dealers. This time my husband was in it on his way home from Philadelphia during rush hour. It died on I95, and the dealer had to tow it back to the shop. When the tow truck driver asked who was paying the bill, my husband did not answer him so he went into the dealership counter.

    Called Ford today. They told me that there were about 200,000 of these vehicles produced in two years. She also told me that she could not disclose the process that Ford uses to issue recalls. Emailed NHTSA and asked for a hearing. I would suggest that you do the same. Under Title 49 of the United States Code 301, we are entitled to this. I am contacting my attorney generals office, senator, and all the rest of those involved to petition for a hearing.

    On March 5, 2009, the Committee on Energy and Commmerce held hearing about consumer protection in the used and subprime car market. I would suggest that anyone interested should read this. The Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety (CARS) presented testimony.

    I wonder how much money is made by just re-sellling these vehicles over and over again by the dealers and how much is made by fixing them over and over again while human beings are being subjected to the risk of death or injury by auto accident?

    Anyone ever read the transcripts from the "Pinto" hearings? Wasn't it Ford that quoted, "It's cheaper to let their customers crash and burn?" What happens when they run out of customers?
  • tbrown61tbrown61 Posts: 9
    I think they are the same. All I know is that I had the same trans troubles everyone else had. whats worse is that after you fix this piece of crap, you cant trade it in, nobody wants the thing for what you owe on it. :lemon:
  • tbrown61tbrown61 Posts: 9
    I wish I would of traded sooner too. now that all the dealers out there know this van is crap, they wont give you anything for it on trade. you are stuck with this crap :lemon:
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    Nadine,
    You are exactly the type of consumer we need to help keep this thing going until Ford or NHTSA steps up and does the right thing. Please continue to keep us posted on your progress and let us know if there is anything we can do to help or become more directly involved. If you get a hearing date, please let us know the date, time, and place. This would be an excellent opportunity for us to get together as a group and be heard as a group. I personally would be willing, schedule permitting, to join you at the hearing and would be willing to bet that others would join you as well.

    Kepp up the good work. I support you 100%!

    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    I believe that the Customer Service at Ford has only one answer - It's "Proprietary". They will not provide any information, and tell you to contact the dealer. Did the dealer make the vehicle?

    Franklin Delano Roosevelt in a message to Congress stated, " The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than the democratic state itself. That in its essence is fascism: ownership of the government by an individual, by a group or any controlling private power."

    Ralph Nader writes in his book The Good Fight, " This loss of control is felt ever more deeply. A Business Week poll in the year 2000 found 72 percent of the people believing that corporations had too much control over their lives. This was before exposure of the ongoing corporate crime wave that has looted or drained trillions of dollars from hardworking people. Society, like a fish, rots from the head down. Our leaders have been delivering for themselves and their circles, not for the people they allegedly serve. In return, too many people have been too trusting of, or resigned to, their leaders' mass media rhetoric. Our static political system often leads our elected officials to do the opposite of what they say." " Powerless people often aggravate their situation by giving up on themselves. They don't believe they're really capable of doing anything about the injustices affecting their families, their neighborhoods, and their communities."

    We can not afford to give up. All of us should be asking for a hearing as citizens of this country. I know that my senator really does care about the people he serves, and I know with all my heart that he will do everything in his power to make that happen. We do live in the GREATEST country in the world, and it is owned by the people for the people-not Ford!
  • turtle45turtle45 Posts: 4
    I e-mailed Ford on tuesday and got a reply yesterday. I am supposed to call them this afternoon about my complaint with the Freestar. Since I have all the documents and bills for the last 4 years on my wife's Freestar. Let's see what they do.
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    I can not believe that Ford gave you a number other than their Customer Relations. Good luck in getting some satisfaction. How many repairs in the four years took place, and does you wife feel safe riding in the vehicle? I don't think that I could ever ride in it again. I am having a difficult time with the fact that Ford is not wanting to keep loyal customers. This experience has really jaded my opinion about their customer service, reputation, and safety record. Until this problem occurred, I had a much higher opinion about them, but now, their true colors have shown though. I know that there are a lot of people in the world, but when you put children at this much risk, shame on you.

    When we are able to get the hearing with the Secretary of Transportation, how many of you will be there to have your voices heard? You know Ford will have a large group there plus the attorneys.
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    Nadine,
    If I am able to be there, I will be there. Please let us know the date, time, and place.
    You are right about the Customer Relationship Center. What a fraud and a sham that was. They treated me so disrespectfully I couldn't believe it. It was a maddening experience. I am just as angry and disillusioned about it today as I was back in November '07 when all of this started. I couldn't believe a company the size of Ford would take a 25 year loyal customer like me for granted and have such an unprofessional, immoral, and unethical approach to customer service.
    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • shocked1shocked1 Posts: 85
    we wpould love to be there, if "life" allows it. i've seen class action suits also that are done thru mail, forms, etc. let us know, please.
    NO MORE FORDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    Dear Nadine,

    Thank you for contacting the Ford Motor Company Customer Relationship Center regarding issuance of a recall.

    Please note that recalls are issued on items that may cause Safety or Emissions concerns with the vehicle. Many factors are used to determine recalls such as warranty status, vehicle history, customer contacts, dealership comments and so forth. Please keep in mind that The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which is the federal agency responsible for motor vehicle safety, and is the only organization with the authority to order a recall.

    Moreover, Ford and the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) work together to proactively identify areas of concern through investigation of consumer and dealer feedback. However, we regret to inform you that Ford and NHTSA's investigation of consumer and dealer feedback are considered proprietary and therefore, is unavailable to the public. Consequently, we are unable to provide you with the information you are seeking.

    Thank you for contacting Ford.

    Sometimes e-mail communication does not allow us to gain additional information that may be helpful in responding to your inquiry. Should you feel that we have not adequately addressed your questions, please feel free to contact us via telephone at (800)392-3673 between the hours of 8am and 5pm, local time, Monday through Friday. Hearing-impaired callers with access to a TDD may contact 1-800-232-5952.
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    I was told that if you have a 2005 or newer vehicle, you still have time to contact an attorney under the Lemon Laws. I would suggest that you hurry!
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    Nadine,
    It is obvious to me that whatever information Ford/ NHTSA will not provide to you is not favorable to Ford and is likely the evidence we need to take an action against Ford and, potentially, NHTSA itself. In my opinion, NHTSA, having been made aware of this issue and still failing to act, is just as liable as Ford.

    Also, apparently Ford is not aquainted with the Freedom of Information Act. Under the Act, they are obligated to provide you with the information because it is information that is shared with a federal agency. Please write them back and advise them that you are making your request under the Freedom of Information Act and that their failure to comply is in violation of the law. This is something an attorney would likely be happy to assist you with because it is one of those cases where the law is CLEARLY on your side and, even though Ford/NHTSA might fight it, they will eventually lose and, in the meantime, your attorney would likely get lots of free publicity because, as we all know, this has the potential to be a very high-profile case. All it takes is one action like this to get the attention of one media outlet and it will take on a life of its own from there. This could be the break we need to get this thing out there!

    Keep us posted!

    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    Though my web surfing, I came across something interesting. Technical Service Bulletins for the UNKNOWN UNKNOWN1 9999 - 110000. Anyone know about these? NHTSA told me that these Technical Service Bulletins for the UNKNOWN UNKNOWN1 9999 - 110000 are items the manufacture produces. I've asked Ford to explain. Let you know when I hear back from them.

    In the meantime, I sent a FOIA to NHTSA seeking any information about the Ford Freestar. I am also looking at the Federal Register for any hearing that took place with NHTSA and Ford about these vehicles. Anyone can access the site because it is in the public domain.

    This problem has existed since 1999 with the the powertrain control module getting wet and then, if you get rear ended, your air bags will not deploy. What was Fords philosophy - something like let them crash and burn?
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    Nadine,
    Great work! You are on top of your game. As for Ford's philosophy, I believe that the statement was more along the lines of; "It is cheaper to let them crash and burn," (than to fix the problem). That was nearly 40 years ago. In this case, it is absolutely amazing to me that, in the age of the internet and consumers being more educated and sophisticated than ever before, that Ford maintains essentially the same philosophy. I guess you can't teach an old dog new tricks. It is no wonder that they continue to lose market share. We are not asking them to hold our hands, we are just asking them to build a safe product and, in the event of a defect such as this one which is HUGE, inform the public and fix the problem. By the way, the problem is not just the PCM, it is also the undersized transmission that eventually, literally, comes apart with no warning. Thatis what left my family stranded in the middle of an intersection like sitting ducks. It is a miracle that no one got hurt. It would be more than a shame for Ford to get away with what I believe to be criminal behavior. Afterall, our decision to buy this vehicle was greatly influenced by Ford's marketing of its "safety rating." What else can that be than criminal?

    Keep up the good work and, as always, thank you and please keep us posted!

    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • why_mewhy_me Posts: 4
    I would be very happy to be at a meeting with the Secretary of Transportation. I live in the DC area and I am self-employed so I have no problem getting there. Even though I managed after 3 months of getting no reasonable response from Ford, to talk a Ford dealer into replacing the transmission in my van even though the extended warranty had expired only 255 miles before my van quit moving, I am now still worried that it will fail again every time I get in it. I am also stopping anyone I see with a Freestar and telling them about the problems, and directing them to this site. They hate the message I am giving them, but they are glad to at least have a warning, unlike most of us. Someone, some day has to listen to us if we make enough noise!
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    Why_me,

    Look at it this way, unlike Ford, you are doing the right thing and you might actually save someone's life! Also, you are very fortunate that you got the dealer to replace your transmission. The rest of us weren't so lucky. My family is out almost 4K between the repair and the rental for the week. All we have been able to do is make minimum payments on the loan we had to take out to pay for this mess since November of '07 when this happened. We havn't even touched the principal balance. We actually owe more on just the repair itself than our van is actually worth! Plus, we have the added benefit of driving in constant fear that it will quit again. The irony of this thing is that the salesman, yes, THE SALESMAN, actually tried to talk me out of buying this thing when it was brand new! I should have listened and probablywould have if he would have been more specific about why he was trying to talk me out of it. Anyway, keep up the good work. Maybe we will all meet in person at the hearing?

    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • jdan65jdan65 Posts: 1
    I just purchased a 2005 freestar it lasted about 3000 miles after paying $5400.00 for it The freestar only has 5200 miles on it and with no warning going down the interstate it just quit pulling, I almost got rear ended by 18 wheelers trying to get off road.. I have never had a vehicle quit with less warning it is surely a safety hazard, be sides not being able to have transportation I now can't afford another car payment with my social security income. If there is a lemon law I would like to know about it and how to proceed with a suit.
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    I sent an email that stated that I was glad that Ford appreciated my feedback, but I demand to know how they planned on compensation for loss of value and repairs.

    This is the email that I received from Ford Motor Company.

    "Thank you for contacting Ford Motor Company in regards to this issue. Our records indicate that a decision has been made and the Customer Relationship Center (CRC) can not overturn this decision. However, to ensure our records are complete we have documented your feedback."

    I want to know what decision? They never told me that had made any decision.

    I am going to put signs on my lawn, vehicles, and make fliers that say," FORD-Pinto, Explorer, Freestar, Firestone tires-Let them crash and burn-Ask me why you should not buy a Ford!

    Many of my friends are going to do the same. I would suggest that we all become activates. Maybe that will get their attention and possibly the news media too.
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    What a bunch of nonsense. Apparently the decision they are talking about is the decision Ford made to KNOWINGLY AND WRECKLESSLY put unsuspecting consumers in harms way by putting this defective product out into the marketplace and, on top of that, market it on its safety record! Or, is it the decision they made to LIE to me when I called the dealer and the dealer said they never heard of this problem before. Or, better yet, maybe it was the decision they made to LIE, IN WRITING, to the investigator for Attorney General for the State of MD, by stating that the model transmission in my vehicle is one other than what it is. I could go on and on with what I have been through because of these criminals and the DECISIONS thay have made.

    You are absolutely right, Nadine. The suggestions you are making are excellent and are good ways to get the attentionof somebody. All it takes is one decent lawyer or news person to get ahold of this story for it to take hold and take off. I, for one, tell everyone I know and everyone I meet about Ford and what they have done to us. As sson as I can afford it, I am going to have either a wrap or a magnetic sign made up, as large as the tailgate on my defective F150, (Yes, I am blessed with 2 defective Ford products), stating, "Don't buy Ford. Ask me why." Followed by my phone number. Unfortunately, until I pay off the new transmission and the rental I needed to haul my family around in for a week, (Toyota Sienna - a work of art compared to the Freestar), I can't afford any more expenses.

    In the meantime, keep up the good work and don't forget to let us know the results of your Freedom of Information Act Request.

    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • Hey everyone. I have an 05 Freestar with 130 000km (80 000mi), and out of the blue one day, the van would not shift into reverse, drive etc. Tranny shop said the torque converter needed to be replaced (along with the seals and some electrical unit inside the tranny). It would have cost me 2500.00, but I have 6 months left on my warranty, so I got lucky with the financial aspect. After the repairs, it worked for a day or so and then the exact same thing happened (wouldn't go into gear). Turns out there was a ton of water in the PCM unit and the water was causing it to malfunction. They took the PCM out and dumped the water out and let it dry out. They then sealed the PCM connector with silicone and sealed the area where the water was getting in etc. It has been 2 weeks and so far things are as they should be. I am just wondering how long it is before the tranny has other issues etc. Is there a history of the tranny having more problems even after the torque converter etc. was replaced?

    Kris.
  • shocked1shocked1 Posts: 85
    Well friends, after exactly 6mo. our rotten FORD'S tranny's acting up again!!!!! Ill junk it for $200 this time!!!!!!!!!
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    I was told that Ford means F*** Old Rebuilt Dodge.

    The April addition of Consumer Reports in the Used Cars section states that, "These models have piled up below-average records of reliability. Used cars to avoid." We had one dealer who told us that he would only give us $2500 for the thing. We paid over $9300 for it less than a year ago. This is like some vicious cycle of raping the consumer, and usually, it someone who can not afford the economic hit. Just like most of us.

    Any wonder why the foreign manufactures are taken over the car industry. Did you know that Ford made tanks and other equipment for the Nazis? A friend on mine who happens to be Jewish told me that his family will not buy Ford based on that information. Wish I knew that sooner.
  • kaki1kaki1 Posts: 7
    At 60,000 miles the transmission died in my 2004 Freestar. At the time I was on a busy 4 lane highway in the number one lane with a friend and my two dogs in the car. Without warning the van was suddenly in neutral. The engine reved but no gears. I barely made it onto an exit and down to the service road shoulder. Seems it's the torque converter. The vanes sheared and fragged the transmission. Sound familiar?
    I'm looking at a $3500.00 bill. I'm picking it up tomorrow. Just thankful I wasn't on a two lane road passing another vehicle when it happened.
    Why isn't there a class action suit against Ford for this obvious and dangerous defect?
  • mercmontymercmonty Posts: 9
    my 2004 monterey has been having the same bucking symptoms for the last 20000 miles. Its been a while since i visited this forum, and now i see that some people are getting results by sealing the pcm module. Also has anyone had a problem with the low tire warning system and how do you fix it?

    Glad to see a few people like Jim G. still giving them hell. :sick:
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    There isn't a class action suit because as I was told by an attorney "It would cost $300,000.00, and in this economy with the car industry as it is, etc......" Like Jim and myself, if you're mad as hell, then write. If enough of us make a strong enough campaign to change something, we can do it together. It's worth the effort, and this is still America the last time I looked. We have a voice, and we need to be heard!

    Congress is our tool to change what is happening. They work for us and as I was told by Ford, "NHTSA is the federal agency responsible for motor vehicle safety, and is the only organization with the authority to order a recall." Let your senators, congressperson, and the white house know what is happening to us.
  • jgenovesejgenovese Posts: 220
    kaki1,
    You have asked the $64,000.00 question. Why isn't there a class action against Ford? Better yet, why hasn't there been a recall? I think the lawyer nadine referred to hit the nail on the head - somewhat. I do think the economy has something to do with it but, at the end of the day, its all about the money.

    From an attorney's perspective, the likelyhood of collecting an award or getting paid is slim, regardless of how good a case we have.

    From the perspective of the individual consumers, it is impossible to do it alone. We need to stick together and keep this thing going until either a reporter/media outlet takes an interest or an attorney who is motivated by something in addition to the money, (like principal, the moral component, or just plain doing the right thing). Take heart however; I'm sure the Pinto and Explorer victims faced the same odds before someone took up their cause.

    From NHTSA's perspective, I can only imagine there is some behind the scene's deal where Ford is claiming that a recall will bankrupt them and that is the last thing this country needs is the 3rd of the "Big Three" going under, blah, blah, blah...
    Think about it; How much more dangerous of a defect can you imagine? When your transmission fails, without warning, and you have no control of your vehicle, that is about as perilous as it gets. It is no less dangerous than say, your brakes failing without warning. There either has to be some kind of backroom deal or the people at NHTSA are just as incompetent as the baffoons at Ford who designed this deathtrap on wheels.

    From my perspective, I consider the conduct of Ford and NHTSA, given what Ford knew when they built and sold this vehicle and what NHTSA knows at this point, nothing short of criminal. I will not rest until somebody steps up and does the right thing. Ford put my family in harms way and NHTSA, through their negligence, continues to put other families in harms way. Anyone that knows me will tell you; If you know nothing else about me, understand this; Do not mess with my wife and children.

    Our day will come. It is just a matter of time. Unfortunately, while Ford cowers in the corner and slithers through the grass, and NHTSA buries its collective head in the sand, families are still in grave danger and the odds are somebody will lose their life because of this defect. That is why it is critical that we keep this forum going and keep spreading the word.

    Jim Genovese
    Annapolis, MD
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    Well said my friend!

    Do we not live in America? For the people, by the people. I do not remember the Constitution saying for the corporation by the corporation. Ford and other automobile manufactures are making billions of dollars from hard working Americans by defrauding us and selling us defective products. It is really unconscionable that they can do this. Where are our public servants? I believe that NHTSA is a government agency not a corporate tool.

    NHTSA told me that there is not a "magic" number for them when they decide to take action in these cases. What is the criteria for protecting us from this abuse of power? What about the children who are so put at risk?

    Does anyone know if the car is stalled will the airbags deploy?

    We must stick together!
  • nadinebnadineb Posts: 190
    Between May 13 and now, Wikipedia has been edited. This statement has been removed. Wonder why?

    "Reliability Issues: The main weak point of the Ford Freestar and Mercury Monterey is the poorly designed transmission system. Many have had or will have transmissions problems, requiring towing. There is a problem with the power train control module (PCM) as it can easily get wet and malfunction. Limp mode is not automatically engaged on the vehicle, the driver must disconnect the computer manually, allowing the vehicle to move without the computers faulty control. There is also a problem with the clutch, as it will wear out and not engage."
  • Dear Jim,
    After sadly joining this group in November 2008, I submitted my complaint with the NHTSA. Today I got an email from the NHTSA
    Dear Sir or Madam:
    Thank you for reporting to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) concerning the transmission problem on your 2004 Ford Freestar.
    To assist us in evaluating this issue, please
    email or fax (202-366-1767) me a copy of the repair invoice. Thank you
    .

    Have you or anyone else gotten such an email. I am hoping that this is not a joke/hoax but the real thing, finally.
    Cathy
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