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Ford Escape Mazda Tribute Maintenance and Repair



  • muckyduckmuckyduck Posts: 219
    I don't own an Escape/Tribute but thought I would pass this along. On NPR (National Public Radio) Saturday morning there is a show called Car Talk with 'click and clack, the tappert brothers' - they are also on the web site of - if you never listened to this show, you should do yourself a favor - it is hillarious and will get some useful car info.

    Last Saturday, a caller talked about her Escape stalling problem - they acted like they knew exactly what it was - a loose electrical connection. She had another problem with her car - think she said transmission - and these guys told her that the shop did not do all the electrical connections properly at the time of repair. So, all you owners that have had stalling problems, this might be a solution - have your electrical connections checked. You may have a loose connection.
  • suvshopper4suvshopper4 Posts: 1,110
    Click and Clack may have a loose connection (or two).
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    I also heard that show. The caller had a problem with the transmission and needed to have it replaced at 15K. After the new tranny had been installed, she experienced issues with stalling. However, it only happened when she drove over bumps (like railroad tracks). Doesn't sound like the same issue we see here.

    The Tapperts advised that the cause may be a loose wire. Since replacing a tranny requires quite a bit of un-installing, they figured that the mechanic may have forgotten to tighten a connection when they put things back together.

    It was an amusing segment, though. I thought they were a little hasty to suggest the lemon law. They were probably just taking advantage of the fact that it's a lemon yellow truck.

    Speaking of lemon laws... A_Handlesman, you may need to give your dealer three attempts at fixing the problem before going lemon. In most states, you need to document three separate attempts at fixing a problem before taking legal action. Simply having the same problems three times does not qualify (not sure if that's what you were thinking). Good luck with the vehicle. =)
  • muckyduckmuckyduck Posts: 219
    Could be totally different problem but if some connections were not properly done, then any little bump may cause it. I think it would be worth owners of these vehicles to consider it and see if it could be checked out.
  • murphy27murphy27 Posts: 31
    I took the Escape in yesterday for its one year oil change, tire rotation, etc. Also there is a noise where the AC blower/fan is on the right side. It was so loud and would go off when the AC was turned off. The truck was there all day and other than the maintenance work, they said they could not find a thing - did not hear the noise but still "tightened something" and told me to bring it back if the noise started again. I drove it today for three miles (I am home on vacation today) and it is starting to make noises again. Furious - as it means another trip to Ford. Anyway - while I was there, I managed to actually talk to a mechanic (they are not supposed to speak to the customers). He told me he had had several Escapes with the stalling problem and re-programming the PCM seemed to fix it. The service manager spoke to me when I came back and cheerfully said "well perhaps there will be a recall". I cannot wait to dump the Escape. Actually hated to give up my rented ford focus. It was so great to drive and not have to look at the gauges waiting for a stall.

  • I'm not very happy. My Escape just passed the 36k mark and the engine light came on. Tried the suggestions on the board regarding the gas cap/disconnect battery to reset light but the light would turn back on after driving for a short period.

    I don't know much about cars so I'm not sure what an DPFE Sensor (Delta Pressure something or other) and an EVR Vacuum regulator is what Ford is telling me is wrong. Has anyone heard of this problem.
    P.S. Anyone want to buy an ESCAPE for $15k (negot)? XLT, Leather, upgraded wheels and side bar?
  • dnardinidnardini Posts: 4
    The latest Consumer Reports magazine (Annual Auto Issue) gave both the Escape and Tribute dismal reviews. Seems that consumers are not happy (big surprise there eh?). Both the 2001 Ford Escape (V6) and 2001 Mazda Tribute (V6) are listed under "Used cars to avoid". Not a great start for a newly designed vehicle.

    The Tribute got the lowest mark for reliability and second lowest mark for customer satisfaction. The Ford Escape fared slightly better for customer satisfaction, but reliability was the same (crap).

    As an unhappy 2001 Tribute owner, I can relate to that. I still prefer the Tribute's overall design to any other small SUV, but that's not really much good if it doesn't work :)

  • scape2scape2 Posts: 4,124
    I took a scroll back about 300 posts and noticed quiet a few REPEAT posts/problems, along with quite a pattern.
    Seems like maltb, varmit, canadatwo, carseeker, murphy27 have this room pegged.. to name just a few....
  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    I haven't posted anything negative on this board in a while.
    In fact, my last post was rather positive, about a fuel pump
    noise that probably indicated there was no problem with the fuel
    pump. But I have read all the new negative material. In with that I say...
    ... thank the Lord I didn't buy a STINKIN' FORD!!!
    Stop the UAW posturing and falsehoods.
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    I think scape2 was trying to point out that several non-Escape/Tribute owners are submitting an awfully high number of posts to a thread in which they really don't belong. Before you say it, I doubt that they are conspiring to stop all Escape/Tribute sales because it's pointless to do something like that. It'll never work, and it would be really sad.

    To all who read this thread for advice, take the time to look at each person's profile so you can see if they actually own the vehicle that they are writing about.

    carseeker4, you bought a Santa Fe didn't you? Hmm, let me see, which one has a better history Ford Truck or Hyundai Truck (or even Hyundai in general)? That's a tough one. Give it a year or two and then come back to make your comments. I wonder, how many improperly manufactured engine parts will have been replaced by then? I used to think Hyundai had something good going, then I was forced to drive a 2001 Sonata from mid-December to mid-January (wife's Civic decided to form the letter 'T' with an Accord one dark December night, and it was a rental with < 10,000 miles on it). Let's just say, what comes around, goes around.
  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    Yes, there is the potential that my Santa Fe will not turn out to be what I expect. I was well aware of that gamble with Hyundai, but to me it was worth the gamble, given its build quality when compared with the Tribute (we spent three hours combing over these two vehicles side by side and test driving them). My problem with scape is that he insists on questioning EVERYONE and ANYONE who dings Ford on quality (and American cars in general). True a lot of these posts are duplicate posts and some are from those who don't own a Tribscape, but are merely investigating (I guess you could say I owned a Tribscape for about 24 hours!), like me, but those folks have done their homework and are looking for "real life" experiences of people who have had problems. The Yahoo boards are FULL of bad posts about the Tribute (let's face it, its a Ford) also. I didn't get on scape until his "Wan Lu" or whatever, post on the "FordEscape/MazdaTribute vs. Subaru Forester vs. Hyundai SantaFe" forum. That showed his "union mentality" (complaining about "free trade" and "foreign wages", etc). Since I despise American unions, and hold them accountable for unduly raising labor costs (and thus reducing quality) and for being corrupt, I feel his views need to be answered. And.... let's face it, the American public has made its statement over the past 10 years. American automotive manufacturers are losing market share, and if you ask John Q. Public, its quality issues that did it. Read how many people on this board say they will never buy a Ford again. Many of these people probably bought for "patriotic" reasons, too! Anyway, the Santa Fe did have one problem, a sensor, which was quickly fixed and its running quite well, ready for its first oil change, and I love the interior (not quite as roomy as the Trib, but more stylish), and I don't have to worry about stalling when I'm going downhill at 45.... sorry for the length...
  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    .... I still read this board regularly. It reinforces the rightness of my decision! (hate to say it). But, baggs is correct in pointing out "how long will that last?". We'll see. I guess I will be a good test case.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    Do I post here? Yes. Do I post problems? No.

    Try reading the content, instead of focusing on the poster's name.
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    I have driven numerous tribs and rather enjoy the vehicle. I do not own one, but then again I don't OWN any car. If a Trib fit my needs, I'd probably have one in the driveway though.

    However, from my memory, the only time I speak up in here is to debunk what I know as false info or to gather more info. If that's not what a forum is for, people are wasting their time posting.

    Personally, it's in my best interest to see everyone and their mother driving a Tribute, but the fact that it doesn't have a good record disappoints greatly.
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    I'm with you on the unions.

    I know some people that have said they would never buy this, or never buy that because they had a problem with a certain brand. They always end up having a problem with the next brand, and the cycle continues on. Fortunately for them, with autos, it could be decades (or never) before they have a problem with the next brand. Some people just deal with problems better than others I guess. By the way, it took Hyundai 2+ years to fix the Santa Fe stalling problem. That's not so quick if you ask me. At least they fixed it though, I'll give them that.
  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    Yeah, the stalling problem was related to a crankshaft sensor, they also had some engine failures due to bad cylinder sleeves early in 2001. I read about all those things and still bought the Santa Fe because, like you said, they fixed the problems. My problem was a throttle position sensor, which did not cause a stall, but some erratic acceleration and shifting (believe me, I thought I had a major problem on my hands, until they came back with that), however, its fixed and purrin' like a kitten. Also, you mentioned reliability of Ford trucks vs. Hyundai. Both the Escape/Tribute and Santa Fe are built on car platforms so that's more difficult to judge. In the TRUE truck dept, you are correct, Hyundai has no experience. And, I don't know if they will try to expand into that area or not. I should clarify my statement on unions, the "corruption" became evident only after the 1920's, but the concept of unions in general has some serious flaws (like "collective bargaining", which allows individuals to get away with poor performance on the job and still get a raise, and discourages initiative).... and management has to take some blame for rushing products to market..
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    I don't wish to get too far off topic - but - with regard to unions, they contract with management which means that management AGREES voluntarily to the terms of the contract. If you see problems with unions, you have to look no further than management to blame as they agreed to the terms. Bad contracts come from bad management.

  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    Gee tide, just come in here and bait the room! I won't touch it though.
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    Yes, let's try to stay away from the union thing. Leave those words for the bars.

    Yes they are built on car platforms and have the unibodies, etc., etc.. They really are trucks in the end though. So, they don't play in all of the big truck games, but they do have the skills to play in most. Look at their manufacturer names on You'll see Ford Truck and Hyundai Truck. On another note, something I always thought to be strange here in Pennsylvania (you're from the Philly area right), large vans and pickups say "Truck" on their PA license plates. Why don't SUV's? I never really did find out why, as I just got the new one (PA website and all) and it is the same as those on cars. Not that I really care, I'm just curious.

    Anyway, we've put 1200+ more miles on our Escape in the past three months, and have not stalled again. I'm thinking about taking it in to have the PCM upgrade before it does stall again (if it even does) which may give me a better idea of whether or not this "fix" is really working. No one seems to want to come back to report success with it even though some of us keep asking them to. Anyone have any good news?
  • eld1eld1 Posts: 10
    I wish I could have the PCM Fix. But my selling dealer can't do anything because I called the FORD 800 number and complained that my car had been at one dealer 3 times with no fix, and my car is now on the "don't touch unless the problem can be duplicated with a tech in the car" list! Has anyone been able to duplicate the stalling on demand?? Selling dealer suggests I play dumb and bring it to another dealer to see if they will work on some of the "fixes"!

    Sent the Lemon letter to Ford last week, so I'm waiting to get my return receipt and start counting off 10 days. Just a reminder that my stalls have occurred with thousands of miles between stalls so watch your dash! Usually I can't tell I have stalled until I need to brake or turn. If anyone has advice on how proceedings with their Lemons have gone with Ford, I would love to hear it. Murphy, where are you at with this?

    I know of one other case where Ford admitted the 2001 Escape was a Lemon and the owner won. Anyone else have any experiences with Escape Lemons?
  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    I'll make one more post on the union thing only to answer tidester...

    tidester.... I agree management has made mistakes, but they have been coerced into some contracts with a "threat mentality" from unions which dates back to the 40's. I live near a large Northeastern city where I have SEEN this in action. I'm talking plant sabotoge and physical violence (even from teacher's unions). While its less frequent today, it always rears its ugly head during a labor dispute... another reason I dislike unions. And...if you were someone in a management negotiating position with a family, wondering whether your house would be vandalized, or worse, you might give in to some "gentle persuasion". So.... where's Jimmy Hoffa buried? ;-)

    baggs... actually at the NHTSA site, there is no Hyundai Truck entry, but Ford Truck and Mazda Truck have the Escape/Tribute listed under them. You're right, its curious. I just got my owners card for the Santa Fe and its registered as a "Sedan". Go figure!
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    They list it as Hyundai Truck in the recall database. That's what I was looking at. I guess they're just as confused as the rest of us.
  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    I was looking at the "Consumer Complaints" database, and there is no Hyundai Truck entry... you're right, they are as confused as we are!
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Thanks for your comments. I wonder if there would be any interest in picking up on this topic in the "Social Issues: An Automotive Perspective" forum over in News & Views?

  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    OK, fine... see y'all over there.... I'll title it something like "American Car Manufacturers/Unions" - scape2... see you there....
  • bri66bri66 Posts: 220
    Can anyone tell me if Ford ever found out what causes the Escape to stall? First time last night for me at 20,000+ miles. Glad it was me driving and not my wife.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    Ford has apparently uncovered two possible situations. The first is that the PCM must be reprogrammed. Second, older models have a PCM that is somehow different and may not be able to be reprogrammed. In those cases, they both replace the PCM and reprogram it.
  • eld1eld1 Posts: 10
    Update: Yesterday (on the way to play dumb at a new Ford dealership - at the advice of my selling dealership) my car stalled for the 7th time at 23389 miles. LUCKY ME -- this dealership was able to "duplicate" the stalling and then performed TSB 15589, which consists of reprogramming the PCM on my Lemon. I will keep the board posted about both my letter to Ford, my pending Lemon action and the result of TSB 15589. As to the question just posted -- I don't think Ford is admitting they have a problem -- NHTSA sent a letter on December 7, 2001 and Ford has yet to respond. Check out complaints at (Ford Truck) and you will realize that there are a lot of people in the same situation. I have a $25,000 Lemon that I'm scared to drive - Before this I drove a Nissan 200SX with 150,000 and no problems.
  • murphy27murphy27 Posts: 31
    The reason people post here regarding problems with the Escapes and Tributes is because that is what this forum is for - Escape/Tribute problems. I own an Escape; it has stalled twice; who knows if the fix really fixed it; it is a condition that will end up killing someone. What I am going to do - either go through the Lemon Law - which means I have to keep driving not knowing when I may stall which has stopped me from ever driving my Escape except on city streets to get to work. I do not care if it was made by a union or non-union workers. All I know is that Ford is willing to let people die rather than be honest and admit there is a dangerous problem. In all honesty, I am furious. The end result, at the urging of family and friends, I will probably just go out and buy another car. We may bring a lawsuit against FMC on other grounds to hopefully bring more attention to this problem (after I get rid of the Escape). FMC should not, imho, be in business.

  • We just bought our Tribute in January,and last weekend, at about 4,000 miles it stalled while driving. I'm very freaked out about this. I've scrolled back a few times and it looks like this problem is mostly linked to the Escape. Are these SUVS mfg'd by the same co., and is that why they are paired here for discussion and experiencing some of the same problems?
    I'm going to check out lemon laws in my state--but does anyone know how that works when you buy in a different state than you live in?
    Also, should individual consumers report problems like this to some government agency, and if so, which one? Is that the National Transportation Safety Board?
    Also, I'd be interested in seeing anyone's letter (if they would care to share) to the manufacturer, or at least get some good talking points. Can I legitimately threaten legal action, for example, if Mazda continues to not deal with such a catastrophic problem? I certainly agree with the comments that engine failure creates a death trap waiting to happen. But I do not want to die, or take anyone with me, to prove a point. I, too, am restricting my Tribute driving to in-town, 30 mph., making it the most expensive errand-runner around.
    Alto, this is only my second time posting here and I saw some messages that seemed to indicate we are not supposed to talk about problems here. If that's true, sorry for the added intrusion (but isn't that what this kind of forum would be useful for). If I've misunderstood those messages, well, whew.
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