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Ford Freestar Transmission Problems



  • Received mine also....a great relief. We repaired ours just over 2 yrs ago. I think I will call Ford Monday and see if I can start the refund process now....don't really feel like waiting for them. It's been long enough.
  • I received my recall papers on 3/31! I will also have to file in the paperwork to get started on my refund. I'm going to ask for the full refund that Ford wanted to charge me to fix I know it will go no where, but doing it more for the reaction than anything else. They wanted almost $1400 to get it repaired, but I found a guy that did it for $900. Ford was willing to match the price after I told them I was not going to go with them and said that this other repair place probably is not using a Ford part. I laughed and said it was a faulty Ford part that broke in the first place, so why would I care if it was a Ford part or not.

    I plan on scanning my receipts and will be contacting whomever it is that I need to by email so that I have record of everything that is said between myself and Ford. I hope I do not have to deal with the dealership, I can't stand that place.

    Now, on to get them to recall the PCM that is being ruined by water. My van is sitting in front of my house because I cannot drive it. I refuse to put in another $600+ into that van so that something else can break on it.n My wife and I went and bought a Honda Odyssey.
  • motheyemotheye Posts: 17
    Here is my question; transmission failed in the exact manner as everyone else--just rolling along and died; the ford dealer simply told me "I needed a new transmission for $2800" and the invoice reads "rebuild transmission, $2800". I have no idea where the torque converter fits into the transmission--but is it possible Ford is going to tell me I had a different problem even though it died the same exact way? The recall is to replace the torque converter--but isn't that within the transmission? I already sent my refund request letter in per their instructions and waiting to hear back. Can anyone explain to me the difference? My fluid was clear and no leaking when it happened--but nobody gave me any details on what exactly they did other than rebuild the transmission.
  • motheyemotheye Posts: 17
    Just read an automotive website that was responding to a question on a vehicle that would not go into any gear. They questioned 'how many rebuilt transmissions were sold--with a new torque converter--which would have been solved simply by changing the torque converter'. This article talked about defective splines in the torque converter being the problem--but the customer was sold an entire rebuilt transmission (which included a new torque converter by the way). Does this sound familiar? I'm sensing that is what happened with my freestar repair and why they did not detail any specifics on the repair bill.
  • iferifer Posts: 11
    I would call your transmission shop and ask for them to itemize your bill. We've had our transmission rebuilt twice and both were due to the failure of the splines on the torque converters. One bill is itemized out but the other isn't. I'm going to talk to the transmission shop this afternoon and ask him to write up an itemized bill that he'll sign so I can attach it to the original bill.
  • iferifer Posts: 11
    I called Ford this morning after reading everyone's posts from this past weekend about receiveing letters. Last night I entered my VIN into the website to check for recalls and I got a message stating that there were no recalls on my vehicle. So, I called Ford to ask why it's not included. The customer service rep I spoke with told me that my vehicle IS included in the recall and it shows in their system. So, I urge everyone to call and ask and not trust that website.

    Also, in the conversation I had with the customer service rep he had given me the address to send my receipts and a letter deatiling the issues I've had with our 2004 Freestar. He told me that the only recall out there right now is for the torque converter. After talking with him for a while I told him thatI understood that BUT if the torque converter splines didn't fail, then metal shavings wouldn't have been thrust throughout the tranny thus requiring the tranny to be rebuilt. He said that he understoond and told me that's why they're going to be looking at things on a "case by case" basis.

    I don't like to make assumptions, but after speaking with him today, it sounds like Ford will be reimbursing for more than the torque converter is they find that failure caused the other issues requiring the rebuild. Keeping my fingers crossed!
  • iferifer Posts: 11
    Something I've wondered about for a very long time but can't prove it because I'm not a technician:

    Are the PCM issues & Torque Converter failures related? Could the PCM be causing the transmission to run incorrectly? Is any of this related to the traction control?

    My reason for questioning these things is because I've noticed things:

    1) When it's humid or rainy, the traction control light is on on the dashboard and my van is sluggish. Cruise control also does not work when the traction control light is on.

    2) When the traction control light is on, the van will "rev" or "lunge forward".

    3) When the traction control light is off and outside conditions are dry/cold or dry/hot, the van runs just fine.

    This has led me to believe that the issue of water getting into the PCM is causing the transmission to work improperly, and over a period of time, ultimately leading to the splines shaving off the torque converter and causing transmission failure.

    Do you think that I'm far off base? Or could it be that the "culprit" that Ford should be looking to fix is the Water/PCM issue?

    Yes, Ford has agreed to replace the torque converter BUT it just feels like another "bandaid" to me. I've had 2 torque converters fail already, one Ford (the original one) and one from the 1st rebuild that wasn't a Ford torque converter. I'm no rocket scientist BUT it seems to me like if the only issue at hand were faulty splines on the torque converters, then the 1st rebuild should've taken care of it. It didn't though, the same thing happened again!

    Any thoughts???
  • momtobcltmomtobclt Posts: 19
    I don't know anything automotive but I did have the PCM issues. Thanks to this board,
    I had it fixed a few years ago. I have experienced the same issues as you have with the "rev" and the "lunge forward". Every day I am just waiting for my trans to go out on my 45 minute commute to work. Of course I have a 2006, which isn't included in the recall. :lemon:
  • wyliecoyote4wyliecoyote4 Posts: 1
    edited April 2012
    Just received my recall letter today on my 2005 Ford Freestar. We have had high RPM problems, vehicle acting like it is in neutral, shifting trouble around 40-50 mph, vehicle dying while going down the highway. Thankfully no accidents caused by these problems. We are hoping this will fix the problem, but they are saying it is still safe to drive! I have read where the metal shavings have messed up the transmission causing more problems. I tried going by the Ford place because in the letter it says if your vehicle is experiencing these problems call your dealer & request a service date for proper diagnosis & repair. If vehicle is not experiencing these problems, Ford will notify you by mail when replacement parts are available. Seems like its just a waiting game because the Ford dealer is saying the part will not be ready until sometime between (April-June).
  • clk6clk6 Posts: 1
    I have been searching for any issues wuth the transmission going out in a 2006 Freestar. It went out exactly as described in the transmission recall for the 2005. No warning, no noise, no indications at all that there was a problem. Poof it just stopped in the middle of the road. Cost $2600 to have transmission replaced. But since my VIN was not listed as one one of the "vans with an issue" I had to pay. I love this van and will always own a Ford, but I feel I should get my money back, especially since I have been reading about other people with the same issue and same year.
  • Our 2006 has had the same failure, TWICE! Once with the kids in the vehicle coming back from a day on vacation while pulling into high speed traffic! The second time, we had some warning and made it to the shop.
    Unfortunately we are not in a position to just get rid of the vehicle. We owed on it. It's so irresponsible of a company that's claim to fame is "Quality is JOb 1". They didn't take the govt buy out, but they are putting families at risk every day and they know it. They know there are 2006's affected by this and choose to ignore it. Prayers for all of us who are at risk each day.
  • angrytooangrytoo Posts: 5
    I also have a 2006 and i called Ford after they FINALLY issued the recall for the '04 and '05. I spent $940 on a new torque converter and right after i had to replace the coil packs and all spark plugs. (irrelevant i guess) But it is BS, i agree with my dad. Depending on when the '06's were made they too could of been built with the '05 engine. Which obviously they haven't taken into consideration. Van drives pretty darn great but still idles rough.
    But still, with 3 kids and other bills....that $940 could of been better spent if our vehicles weren't built with crap. JMO
  • upsetatfordupsetatford Posts: 17
    edited April 2012
    Have you all filed a complaint with the NHTSA? Start here and report as much information as you can. This is where most of us started with the 2004-2005 models.
  • tervmomtervmom Posts: 12
    My 2006 also went out totally without warning while I was driving. It was just so scary! I posted here when it happened around March of 2010 with only around 45,000 miles. Have written Ford, filed a report with nhtsa and written the investigator but 2006 are still not in this recall although all indications were that these are basically the same as the 2004-05 with the same problems. WIll just be keeping my eye out for their inclusion.
  • Negative, PCM is electrically related were the Torque spline shaft is mechanical. However, they are all under the hood....
  • iferifer Posts: 11
    Right....but doesn't the PCM tell the tranny when to shift? So if there was a malfunction with the PCM, couldn't it be sending incorrect signals to the tranny and in turn that would wear out the splines? Or does the PCM not have anything to do with control of the tranny? I thought it did though?
  • IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ -My husband and I own a 2005 Freestar. On Mar 24, we left our home in NC to visit our son in FL. On Apr 2, we left FL and were heading home to NC and had just gotten about 25 miles into SC heading north on I 95 when the van lost it's power. We were going 70mph and were luckily in the right lane. We were able to safely coast to the shoulder, but it was a very scary incident. We have roadside assistance through our insurance company and they were great. A tow truck arrived (close to an hour), loaded us on, then headed south to exit 8 where the nearest Ford dealer was. They were not able to look at the car then so they called Enterprise car rentals, and over 4 hours later, we were finally on our way home. On Tues., we picked up our held mail, and there was a recall notice from Ford. The SC service department said there were very few of these parts available and she said on Thurs. Apr 5 that she was being optimistic but hoped they could get this part in 3 weeks. I then called Ford, explained the situation, told them I needed a car, and all they did was apologize and said they don't pay for rentals. I then requested that when the van was fixed, to please transport it back to me. Nope, no go. Talked to 2 other people at Ford, by this time I was just getting more and more frustrated, and of course angrier. I told them that if they had sent the recall notice in a timely mannner, we never would have driven that van to FL. And now the Ford repair in SC is telling us our transmission is messed up.I hope to spare some of you van owners of having a similiar situation. Yes, they will replace the torque converter, BUT any other costs are your problem, including even having the van towed to a dealership.
    Please check your insurance for how many miles you can be towed. Please do not make any long distance trips with this vehicle. It is not a case of IF this part will fail, but WHEN. And please, if possible, drive in the right hand lane, as this fails with no warning what-so-ever. The letter from Ford says that you can coast safely to the side of the road. This of course is not always true, and this is most certainly a safety issue. Be prepared to spend a chunk of money on the transmission.
    Our van is now 350 miles away, it's Ford's fault, but it's our problem. By the time the transmission and car rentals, and gas is calculated, we are going to be in the neighborhood of $4000.00. You may seriously want to consider getting rid of this van before this happens to you.
  • motheyemotheye Posts: 17
    Sent my letter requesting reimbursement ($2800) along with receipts from local dealership on Jan 18 per customer service instructions (sent to Ford-POB 6251, Dearborn, MI 48121-6251). Called today to check on status and as of today they have no record of receiving my letter! Told me they will check into it and call me back within 5 days for an update. If you have submitted anything to them I guess its best to keep calling Customer service, 800-392-3673 (if you call the 866-436-7332 number you'll tell them the same story and wind up getting transferred anyways). If anyone actually gets a reimbursement check please post.
  • vbouievbouie Posts: 2
    I am of the understanding that they are not reimbursing until May. I talked our local dealer and was given that information and my letter states that it will begin reimbursing in the second quarter (which is May).
  • drea3005drea3005 Posts: 9
    My husband and I have been to the dealer several times, as we have been receiving conflicting information every time. The service manager's response to everything is "At this point we just don't know....As soon as we hear something we will contact you." I don't understand why we have to wait for parts when we have already had it repaired by a Ford Dealer. All we want is our money back. Are they trying to tell us that the $3000 we spent to have our van repaired was done with bad parts. Could this happen again? If so how when? Am I driving a vehicle that is doomed? What if something worse happens this time? Shouldn't the recall include an additional warning if that is the case? Questions -that can't be answered by our local dealer, nor the Ford customer service. Meanwhile we wait. They will be taking their time with this, but they didn't give us the same amount of time for the $3000. Go figure!
  • motheyemotheye Posts: 17
    It sounds like you already had the work done and went back to the dealer to handle the refund. I called Ford back in Jan and they gave me the option of sending the receipts, etc. directly to them--which I did. I called a couple days ago and they have no record of my letter/receipts but said they are checking on it and will call me back! I've heard they are far behind on this and refunds probably won't start til next month or hopefully by the end of June--which is the end of Q2. I would keep pestering Ford directly. I agree--I had to pay before they would hand me the keys back when I got it fixed--so they should rush to pay those of us who already paid to have this fixed.
  • trimadscotrimadsco Posts: 10
    it's very likely that your van was repaired with a bad part. We've had our transmission replaced twice now :-( The first time it had to be replaced, we went with the more expensive Ford transmission (about $3,000), and it came with a warranty. Thank goodness - because it failed 1 1/2 years later. They repaired the transmissions with the same parts used in the original transmission- so there is a chance it could fail again. That's why in addition to requesting a refund, you should also plan to have the torque converter replaced with the "new" one when they become available. Planning to send in my refund request this week, praying this all works out!
  • You bet it can happen again. We have had ours replaced twice. We need to read thru the various posts on here and realize that Ford cares nothing about the safety of any of us or the people we love who ride in these vehicles. They got their money. That's all they are worried about. You will get yours when they see fit to send it. They have demonstrated, as has NHTSA, that they are willing to take their chances with respect to someone dying in a crash due to the problems with this vehicle. They are acting now and still chosing to ignore the fact that there are '06 vehicles with the same problem. Ours is an '06. It's been fixed twice. My husband treats our vehilces with kid gloves. The vehicle clearly had a problem, but Ford just won't own up to it. Say what you want about the Japanese car companies, but at least they own their issues and make them right.
  • My 2005 is still in SC, will perhaps be fixed by next week. Still have the rental car. Unfortunately, the Freestar's reputation is now well known and my local Ford dealer wants nothing to do with this car, he said he would have to sell it at auction. So we're stuck with it. And another interesting little tidbit - the metal shavings that were in the transmission, the service department told us they didn't come from the torque converter as the metal shavings from the spline in the torque converter remain inside the torque converter...hmmmm. Such a coincidence, that the transmission just goes out at the same time.
  • gattman1gattman1 Posts: 9
  • iferifer Posts: 11
    Ford said parts wouldn't be available until the 2nd quarter so that's June. And the customer service rep told me June too...
  • iferifer Posts: 11
    I've had to have my transmission rebuilt twice and it was done by two different transmission shops and both of them told me that the cause of the tranny fail was that the splines shaved off the torque converter and got flushed through the whole tranny.....
  • lorendaclorendac Posts: 2
    jan 2012 i was driving my 2005 ford freestar...transmission went out..van just coasting..,,and ways,, calledwarrantly..called ford..van vin # was under the recall i heard about first week in sat van got towed,,to ford dealership..mon im inofrmed no one had any parts...etc..and they didnt know when van would be fixed..i paid for a rental for a week..bc ford wasnt helping me with [non-permissible content removed].i stayed on the phone mon, tues, wed...during that i wasnt told many times....well make a story short..thurs,,morning i got a call from mgr at dealrship before 8am that my van would be fixed by fri..i will say bc i ranted and i called ftc, bbb...major channel..yes i did it all..waned me to still pay my van note, 800 month for rental..i didnt take no for an and harass until they sessions probaly would be used for training purposes
  • lorendaclorendac Posts: 2
    honey call bbb, ftc...i mean call a major newpaper..tell them how this would impact you r did should call ford to see if your vin# in under recall..honey i won really..i got a rental refund..and van fixed in 6 executive called me to tell me my van was done
  • karriebkarrieb Posts: 2
    BAD BAD Company and Service,. Recalled 2005 Freestar fails on major highway , leaving single mother and 2 children stranded 650 km from home. Recall 11S25 - Company Refused to provide assistence, no loaner, nor rental provided. Ford Customer Manager to call customer with 2 -3 business days. But still no contact from Ford. I had to purchase a vehicle to get home with children while My van is sitting six and half hours away. No feedback as to when it will be repaired for the recalled Torque converter, May take up to 5 months as per the Dealer where the van is located.

    Very bad Business, Very BAD Service.

    Karrie Buchan - High Level AB , Canada
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