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Ford Escape Mazda Tribute Maintenance and Repair



  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    Sorry, my links are not compatible with Edmunds usage policy. I have tried to help by posting links before but every time my posts were removed.


    However, if you focus on Taurus and Escape forums over the internet, you can find it.

    Basically there were two types of dipstick issues; one is shorter dipstick (on taurus)which makes you believe your engine has less oil than what it should have...

    The second one is dipstick shows wrong oil type (Taurus and early Escapes).Some G3 and G4 Tauruses came with Mercon dipstick that was suppose to be Mercon V. And some escapes came with a dipstick marked with Mercon V instead of Mercon.

    Escape tranmissions are modified mazda 626 transmissions (I believe CDNE4 or some thing like that) and they are absolutely not compatible with Mercon V. This can be verified by any Ford dealer.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110
    Thanks, Snowman. I thought there might be something "official" published either by Ford or an automotive magazine.


    tidester, host
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    Here is a different link which doesn't interferre with Edmunds policy...
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    why many service places go with what dipstick says?

    They gotta go witht the service manual which says Mercon.
  • escapenutescapenut Posts: 117


    You're starting to scare me now... Does this mean that Ford may owe me a transmission if it's verifiable that the wrong dipstick was used ? I'm

    calling Ford Customer Service immediately to check....


    Called Ford. They monitored the conversation and according to them it's the first time that they've heard of this particular issue. They can

    find no official documentation on this issue.

    I was advised by the customer care rep. to continue doing what I've been doing on the transmission. However, it doesn't make it right yet. I'd like a little more surety that this is not a real problem.
  • wijocowijoco Posts: 462
    Customer reps are telemarketers that just happen to work for (fill in company name here). They read from official manuals on their desks and probably couldn't change the oil in a lawnmower. The three Ds of customer service are "Defer, Deflect, and Deny."


    According to Ford transmission mechanics on another website that-dare-not-speak-its-name, Mercon III (or just plain "Mercon") is the correct fluid for all Escape/Tribute transmissions. Manual right, dipstick wrong. Maybe that's why the word "dipstick" earned such a bad rap?
  • escapenutescapenut Posts: 117
    Maybe I've been the dipstick for trusting that Ford could use the right dipstick. However, the CCR at Ford said they could find no verifiable

    substantiation for the purported claim. You may be right, about the DDD's, don't know yet.


    Currently I'm running Mobil 1 synthetic ATF which I just put in several weeks ago, ~10.5 quarts were exchanged. This brew is supposedly compatible with any transmission /fluid. I have to admit that the trannie has not been acting out of the ordinary after 3.5 yrs. and 63K miles, but only time will tell. I've been judicious about the flushes and maintenance.


    To be frank, if it was a screw-up at the factory, then :

    1.) I'm owed a decent, cogent explanation from


    2.) I may be owed a new trannie, if this can be


    3.) If substantiation occurs and Ford does not

        comply, then a lawsuit will be forthcoming,

        probably with a settlement.


    My premise is simple, if Ford messed-up then Ford

    should pay period. However, I still like my Escape. I'll keep y'all posted... this may take awhile.
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    You need to prove that Ford made the mistake first.

    Even tought they screwed up, you won't be able to prove it. They even may claim that you changed the dipstick...


    Beyond that, nothing has been damaged yet or at least you don't know...


    You might wanna get it replaced with Mercon asap thought...
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,020
    This topic has moved to its new home in Ford Escape/Tribute Owners. If you are currently subcribed to the discussion, the move should not have affected it.

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email,, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • escapenutescapenut Posts: 117
    I placed a call to the purchasing dealership this morning before I had to go into meetings. The Service Advisor has been very helpful so far, but

    we're playing phone-tag at the moment. He does have some answer for me, either yea or nay, I'm not sure. I'll let y'all know what and when I find out something or whether it will be pat-answer.
  • wijocowijoco Posts: 462
    They are NOT going to give you a new transmission, especially of there's no damage to the current one. I wouldn't even try and pursue that.
  • go323go323 Posts: 5
    As a newbie this forum is difficult to follow. u suggest using the search feature to narrow search. OK, I can do that (Yuk!) Not only do i think separate rooms for the 04 and 05 years for the twins is a good idea ( i certainly hope there is a difference in the 04 and 05 Escape years as the 04 had some problems)...but, I also wish the twins could be surgically separated as I really don't want to read through all those Trib problems to get to the 05 Escape problems! please, use your scapel!
  • kibbles- Stay alert in a Tribute! In about 1 year, my whole front sterring sector was replaced, tires were eaten up, brake pads and rotors had to be replaced. Now at 2 years,and just over mileage warranty, transmission is gone and dealer says Mazda has run out of customer assistance money- can't fix. Want over $3000- Mazda USA won't return my phone calls and I can't speak to regional rep.Won't answer emails either. My car shut off at 40mph- lucky no one hurt. Mazda is dropping the Ford/Mazda SUV in 2007- bringing in a complete Japan built SUV- guess they've had enough. Check out the 33 recalls, and hopefully you'll be lucky enough to deal with a dealership that recognizes Mazda has a problem, and will do the right thing for you. Looks like my problem goes legal now-whoopee- the lawyers win! Mazda ought to be ashamed.
  • Hello,


    I have an 03 Tribute DX (5 speeds), 36k miles, and overall I'm satisfied with it.


    The only problem I have with it, since I bought it, is a knocking sound coming from the front right side of the car. It's as if I try to start the car in the 3rd speed.


    Funny is that this noise can be heard every morning, but only when I start driving the car. It lasts for 1-2 seconds, after that is gone for the whole day.

    I keep my car in the garage. First thing is to put the car in reverse and drive it backwards out of the garage to the front of the house. Then I start moving forward and this is when the noise can be heard.


    Went three times to the dealer. First time they changed something at the stabilizer. Then they could not find anything wrong. They said they can't reproduce the problem. But my wife, me and some friends all noticed this problem, so I'm sure there must be something.


    Anybody has a similar problem?


    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.


  • escapenutescapenut Posts: 117
    Talked to purchasing dealer Friday at length about the dipstick/trans. fluid issue. Their last word is that is if there is no problem now

    or has been no problem with my maintenance schedule, fluid used, etc., then don't worry about it.

    Wijoco: You are right, without litigation involved

    Ford would do nothing. Plus all manufacturers are getting real sticky about records and paper back-up and I don;t have all the paperwork to back me up, so I'm really SOL. I'll just keep tooling along and keep the vehicle for as long as necessary or needed. I still like the way it drives/handles/true-roominess for four (4), but the gas-mileage is not that great. Currently, I've got 63K+, and it seems to be running/shifting fine for now.


    Just had the rear-brakes cleaned and adjusted with a brake-fluid flush. According to mechanic rear-brakes have about 1/2 wear left on them. Front ceramic-enhance brakes perform well and do not dust-up the wheeels like the OEM pads did. After two (2) OEM pad-changes I decided to go after-market and try the cermic-enhanced pads. It's been worth it and the pads were actually cheaper than OEM's. The aftermarket rotors are turnable too unlike the OEM rotors. I would like to add a Gibson or Magna-Flow exhaust system, but do not know if I'll have the vehicle long enough to justify the cost. I may trade for a pick-up by this time next year. I do between 18-19K miles per year, so I'm raking-up miles pretty fast. Like I say, I don't anticipate anything happening to the Escape mechanically, but you can never tell. All machines are prone to wear and breakage.


    The exterior is in great shape, if I do say so myself, with a couple of wax-jobs a year with

    frequent washes. Luckily it's warm enough with few exceptions to wash vehicles year-round here.
  • I had a similar problem on my 02 Ford Escape. Drove me crazy. They changed the stabilizer bar too but it didn't fix it and eventually it got worse. Turns out the engine mounts were bad! They changed those and then the tie rods went.... I'll spare you the details. I got rid of the car but do have them check the engine mounts... It may be what's making your clunk noise.
  • Kibble,


    I have a 2004 Escape with 29K miles. The car stalls when it is put in Reverse, and sometimes in Park.


    I have been to the dealer 4 times already. I have had the PCM module reprogrammed twice already, the accelerator plug (recall) changed, and one other fix. I just picked the car up yesterday and I've stalled 4 times since then.


    A friendly FORD mechanic told me that this is something that is happening often. Not sure what to do. I am over the 2yr/18k lemon law option, FORD customer relations has suggested that I work with the dealer. I am at my wits end here.


    I have owned 2 Toyotas with no major problems (190K and 130K) and upgraded to an SUV because of my growing family and the lure of new car reliability. BOY was I fooled...
  • 2005 Tribute - Auto, FWD, Purchased Fall 04

    1st problem noticed around 10K Km

    1st Problem - ABS Indicator - intermittent on/off. Also intermittent brake pedal vibration.

    2nd problem noticed shortly after 1st:

    2nd Problem - Oil Leak - steady droplet flow.


    Brought vehicle in for service before Christmas, whereby they stated that a speed sensor needed to be replaced for 1st problem and new oil pump for 2nd problem. A month later, still waiting to get problem fixed.

    Vehicle is in the shop as I type, so can update later as to whether the problems were fixed.


    As a side note, not impressed with the level (or lack there of) of service from the Erin Mills Mazda dealer. Vehicle was brought in yesterday for all day service, yet nothing was done since 2 out of 5 mechanics did not show.


    Update and impressions to follow.
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    Mazda provides rental car for Trib, why don't you take your car to a dealer that has better service department?

    It sound complete nonsense that these repairs take 2 months. First repair at most 1 hour, second repair I guess around 3 hours. Parts can be ordered over night as well.
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