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Ford Escape Hybrid Care and Maintenance

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Comments

  • Whenever starting my 2008 FEH, it has always started quietly. I always assumed the electric motor starts (silently), and this starts the engine. I never hear a "starter", like in traditional gas only vehicles.
    I just went in for my 70k maintenance and needed a new/replacement 12v battery. I was told the battery does participate in starting the engine.
    Is this really true? Is there a starter in the vehicle? If so, it sure is quiet!
    It seems to me it shouldn't need a starter or a 12v battery, and be able to use the hybrid battery for everything. Apparently not the case?
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    "Whenever starting my 2008 FEH, it has always started quietly. I always assumed the electric motor starts (silently), and this starts the engine. I never hear a "starter", like in traditional gas only vehicles.
    I just went in for my 70k maintenance and needed a new/replacement 12v battery. I was told the battery does participate in starting the engine.
    Is this really true? Is there a starter in the vehicle? If so, it sure is quiet!
    It seems to me it shouldn't need a starter or a 12v battery, and be able to use the hybrid battery for everything. Apparently not the case? "

    Sorry it took a while to reply, this forum is pretty quiet. The engine is started by the high voltage battery, which spins the engine up to about 1000 RPM and then engages the gas. The 12v battery is required to power up the electronics, so that the high voltage battery can be controlled. Hence if you have no 12v battery, the FEH will not start. There is indeed no conventional starter motor.
  • Steve:
    Thanks for the reply! Just as I suspected, regarding the starter and battery. However, they wanted to replace the battery because it didn't have the acceptable 'crank amps'. I doubt the 12v battery needs to be too beefy, but it would still wear out over time. I live in Arizona, so it happens due to heat faster than other parts of the country. Factory spec is 500, and they measured 256.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    "Thanks for the reply! Just as I suspected, regarding the starter and battery. However, they wanted to replace the battery because it didn't have the acceptable 'crank amps'. I doubt the 12v battery needs to be too beefy, but it would still wear out over time. I live in Arizona, so it happens due to heat faster than other parts of the country. Factory spec is 500, and they measured 256. "

    Actually, it is probably a good idea. That battery plays a small but critical role!
  • jaysandyjaysandy Posts: 2
    edited July 2011
    You need to have the Actuator mechanism for the rear fresh air blender door replaced more than likely ($200.00-$400.00 repair depending on dealer). It lets fresh air cool the batteries and is a known short life part not covered by Ford. Also you have an air filter in the back (storage area) panel (rear drivers side) that lets outside air flow past this blender door and actuator. It might be full of dirt and leaves as mine was when I bought the 12 month old Escape in 2008 from a Ford dealer. All of the other recommended services had been performed correctly but this was overlooked by the technician at the dealer. I would not drive forever with this wrench light ignored as your Hybrid batteries are not being cooled properly from the outside air.
  • jaysandyjaysandy Posts: 2
    edited July 2011
    So that Ford can make $400.00 from us! I agree- show me this part in a gasoline powered Escape not there is it? I Went to Ford in writing to no avail on this Actuator Blender Door repair when my Escape had 40K in 2008.
  • I just got an 08 AWD/Limited FEH a few months ago and notice it makes a squeeking, almost "cricket-like" noise from the dashboard area occasionally but cannot figured out why and don't want to pay yet just to have someone "check it out"

    It's very hard to recreate on purpose - but have realized it happens during the following:
    - It's very cold/cool out (start driving in the mornings low 60's or below)
    - I have the AC going for a long period of time while driving and it's temperate to cool out (won't happen if it's really hot outside)

    It seems like it has something to do with the air con or cold temperatures or something but wanted to see if anyone else has had this issue and what it may be?? it can be pretty annoying!
  • Regarding a squeaking noise behind the dash :
    Usually it's caused by a faulty temperature blend door actuator. There are 2 of them, each one controlling temperature blend door position for driver and passenger. One is located directly behind the radio( behind the dash ), the other one is in front of center console under the dash. Usually the squaking noise comes from behind the radio . There is a motor inside the actuator housing , that moves the blend door. There is also a position sensor that tells climate control module the position of the door. What happens is that when actuator gets worn out, position sensor starts to malfunction and sends erroneous blend door position information to climate control module. The module is trying to move the door back and forth until desired position is set. This excessive back and forth movement of the worn actuator causes the squeaking noise. Often faulty actuator will also set a trouble code like B12A2 and B12B8 in climate control module, Eventually you will lose ability to control air temperature on one or both sides ( driver and/or passenger ).
    If that's the case, you will need to replace the temperature blend door actuators ( I always recommend replacing both ) with an improved part : AL8Z-19E616-F. This part should be covered under warranty for 3 years/36,000 miles. Depending on your warranty start date, it might still be covered.
    I hope you find this helpful.
  • kpainekpaine Posts: 1
    Mine did (does) this too. I've noticed when I have my AC set in the 70's. It is quite annoying, started shortly after we bought our year old FEH. We took it to the dealer, they didn't even look at it, they said they had just had another FEH come in the week before with the same problem, something in the cooling parts of the car. They ordered me new parts, (again, never even looked at my car), and then when the parts came in, they told me FORD would not cover the problem in my full warranty and it would cost several hundred to fix. So now I try to ignore it and crank up my music. It is ridiculous, and evidently, fairly common. And it does sound just like crickets.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    "Mine did (does) this too. I've noticed when I have my AC set in the 70's. It is quite annoying, started shortly after we bought our year old FEH. We took it to the dealer, they didn't even look at it, they said they had just had another FEH come in the week before with the same problem, something in the cooling parts of the car. They ordered me new parts, (again, never even looked at my car), and then when the parts came in, they told me FORD would not cover the problem in my full warranty and it would cost several hundred to fix. So now I try to ignore it and crank up my music. It is ridiculous, and evidently, fairly common. And it does sound just like crickets. "

    If it is only one year old, isn't it under the factory warranty? I would call Ford corporate - and find another dealer.
  • vtdogvtdog Posts: 163
    This is my first winter with the vehicle. Today had heat on and once cabin came to temp cool (cold) air came out of the dash vents. I tried both the auto temp mode and plain fan mode but could not get the air to stop. Is this "normal" for the vehicle? Does anyone know how to stop the air flow. I even tried using the recirc mode but cold air kept coming out.
  • The stitching on the side closest to the door (driver side) is fraying. Car is about one year old, I’m not overweight, I get in and out normally, I don’t wear any weird clothes that would be snagging. Anybody else seen this?
  • 09 FEH. Dealer has a TSB on the blend doors in the dash. Replaced them under warranty.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    "09 FEH. Dealer has a TSB on the blend doors in the dash. Replaced them under warranty. "

    Could you post the TSB number and details, so others can use it?
  • Did not get the number from the tech. He said that there have been problems with the actuators that control the positioning of the blend doors in the ventilation system that will cause temperature of the air into the cabin not being what is set on the temperature dial. In my case this summer, it was the passenger side that we had to select a temperature around 70 to get cold air to come out of the vents instead of heat. Anyway couple hours of work later they had replaced the actuators and all is well.

    Last year we had the wrench light come on intermittantly and the problem was eventually traced to the actuator that controlled the blend door for battery cooling. Must have been a bad batch of actuators.
  • I decided to do some research and found it online.

    Google TSB 09-12-6 Ford and it will have a pdf of the TSB

    CLIMATE CONTROL TEMPERATURE VARIATION FROM SIDE TO SIDE—BUILT BEFORE 12/17/2008
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    "...
    Last year we had the wrench light come on intermittantly and the problem was eventually traced to the actuator that controlled the blend door for battery cooling. Must have been a bad batch of actuators. "

    From what I have read it is a bad design, not bad actuator production. The copper contact that handles the electrical switching rotates with the door, and apparently it degrades over time. Expect to have this service done intermittently.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,798
    Thanks, found it.
  • 2006 escape hybrid maintenance tips:
    #1 replace air filters with K&N. They're worth the money and can be cleaned and reused for a very long time. We found almost 10% fuel economy increase when cleaned at time of oil change.

    #2 change fuel filter every 25-30k miles. It's only $12-13, easy to do and keeps performance very consistent.

    #3 change spark plugs every 40-50k. On a hint from our Ford mechanic I pulled mine early (35-40k) and they were in need of replacing. The plugs run $11 each and the process takes 45 minutes. Equipment needed: 1/4" deep set socket, 5/8" plug pulled with swivel and 6" extender. The rest you'll already have.

    #4 always ask the service tech to check inner and outer tie rods. We have had then replaced twice (once under warranteeand the second time we did not pay because there was a series of records showing we had concerns). The dealer ate the cost ($485).

    #5 we have used Mystery Oil once in fall and again in Spring since vehicle was new. I agree this coukd be called witchcraft but since everything is running great I don't know how to compare it.

    #6 we replaced our tires with Michelins from Costco and love the free rotation and balance for life.

    #7 we flushed radiator at 45k and again at 100k. Should've done it more frequently. There are specials around fo $50 and each time we found the vehicle to run better.

    Good luck!
  • How old are your tires? If you have a bumpy ride that is where you should start.

    I own a 2008 FHE and rode on the factory installed Continental tires for 89,000 miles before they wore out (I do alot of highway driving - I don't recommend you go as long as that on one set of tires). I currently have 120k miles on the FHE and my new tires are still performing adequately (the tires are not rated for more than 40k miles - Kelley Safari made at the same plant that makes several brands of Goodyear tires in Fayetteville, NC). The tires can be fairly noisy, but otherwise no complaints.
  • Check your owners manual - If the noise goes away it could be part of the mechanics of the fuel system - I can't recall exactly, but there is something stated in the owners manual about a clicking or cricket sound.
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