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Ford Freestyle Rear Brakes



  • saabturboidsaabturboid Posts: 178
    It saddens me that some here are calling their Freestyles money pits or lemons because the rear brake pads wear faster than they should. From everything I've read on these forums it is the ONLY common problem with these vehicles. That is an amazing feat by Ford and they should be applauded.

    Yes it is unfortunate that we as Freestyle owners will likely have to replace rear pads more often than on other vehicles, but if that is the only thing we have to worry about then we've got it made. Every vehicle has an achilles heel and many have more than one. Ours is realitively minor and easy and cheap to deal with. New pads are less than $100. That is cheaper than an oil change on a Porsche. These are great vehicles. We have almost 40,000 miles on our '05 and love it.

    Please, don't assume you have a lemon or money pit because of this silly issue. These are great vehicles and I think Ford has done an amazing job in regards to quality. Just put new rear pads on every once and a while and enjoy.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "Please, don't assume you have a lemon or money pit because of this silly issue."

    2006 FS SEL FWD; my car was built in December of 2005. I just had an oil change at 13K, and both front and rear were listed as 8mm remaining (same wear front and rear), so I guess I am a lucky one, or maybe my pads will go out before 20K (I don't know the starting pad thickness).

    However, this is a design flaw (either in the brakes or the pads), and in my opinion is not a "silly" issue. People have reasonable expectations as to brake pad wear. But what you or I think it is pretty much irrelevant - people associate a certain level of longevity with auto parts, and THAT is the standard by which the FS will be judged by the public. A single issue like this can really mess up a car's reputation. The Japanese companies understand this idea, but I think the Ford people are still a bit unclear on the concept.

    Example: Honda America is replacing (in many cases at no charge to the customer) air conditioner systems in the 2003-2004 CR-V, which have been failing, causing around $3000 of damage to the entire engine (metal shavings in the lines). Many of these replacements have been at 60K - 80K miles. They are doing this because they believe in their product, and when they say quality, they mean it. I wish that American manufacturers had the same attitudes.
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106
    Both my 2005 Freestyle and 2005 Five Hundred (both AWD) have had good results on the brakes. At 15k miles, one had 90% remaining on the front and 80% remaining on the back, and the other had those figures reversed.
  • jerzcapejerzcape Posts: 3
    Just went to my dealer for oil change, and mentioned possible problem with rear brakes. Service manager came over and stated they are aware of the problem. He said they have written reports on the problem. The rear brake pads are too soft, when they replace them, they use a different pad. My car had 10000 miles on it, they replaced the pads and turned the rotors. No charge since it was under 12000 miles. Ford should notify owners of the problem , and avoid the hassle.
  • passat_2002passat_2002 Posts: 468
    What year model is your Freestyle, jerzcape?
  • jerzcapejerzcape Posts: 3
    It's a 2006 SE, passat.
  • jerzcapejerzcape Posts: 3
    I believe the new brake pads placed on my "06 Freestyle are part # 7F9Z*2200*A KIT, I hope that helps other owners.
  • atlasvtatlasvt Posts: 2
    Wife took care to get oil changed and tire rotated at local service center. Rear Pads were gone at 15K about to eat rotors. Front Pads still looked new. I immediately called ford dealers. Here is the stories. One TSB states the emergency cables stick in cold weather (mainly up north). This TSB has been replaced with another stating the brakes tend to drag and the brake pads have been replaced with a better material. At any case the user has to eat the cost in most cases unless you get a mecanic that feels this short of life is bs on rear brakes and rights it us as against the TSB. It appears this is a common problem on the Ford 500 and Freestyle. I would expect a class action soon. Anyone with info please post. To different Ford dealer shops were aware that Ford has a major problem with rear brake wear. Your front brake is 80% of the stopping power and rear is 20% or less. So your rear brakes should last 60-70k miles no problem. Not 20k or less. Allot of people I am sure have had to even eat the rotor costs. Not a good deal by ford.
  • I have a 2005 Ford Freestyle that I love, but I'm about to put the 4th set of rear brakes on & I have just under 42K miles on it....severe frustration!
  • theapemantheapeman Posts: 13
    pads on our '05 have been going at the same rate - replaced 2x in 20,000 miles. i did the 2nd change myself using akebono ceramics - too soon to judge wear on them, but no dust!
  • sportmansportman Posts: 23
    Lotusblossom - I suggest Raybestos Ceramic pads. I had similar brake experience and went to these pads, I just checked the Raybestos Ceramics after about 10,000 miles and wear is barely detectable. Brake feel and response is better than EOM and NO DIRTY WHEELS.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    Your front brake is 80% of the stopping power and rear is 20% or less.

    Maybe that's been the case in the past, but I believe that the Freestyle (and other makes) put more braking to the rear to prevent "nose dipping" under hard braking conditions, so that would make sense as to part of the reason for the rear brakes wearing faster. I just had my rear brake pads replaced after 45,000 miles. I bought ceramic pads and had a local shop put them on and turn the rotors for $90, so the rear brake issue isn't much of an issue to me.
  • shep10shep10 Posts: 1
    2006 Freestyle SEL - 33,726 km on it - combo highway and city driving.

    Rear brakes were squealing - took it into Ford dealership - and they said that I really should have brought it in at 20,000 km to have their $199 brake inspection package. I was a bit perturbed at this cause in my 20 years of driving Chrysler, Ford, Honda, Nissan and Mazda never had brake inspection pkg on any of them and the pads/rotors lasted to 50-60,000 kms.

    Anyways today they tell me I need new rear pads and rotors to the tune of $475.

    I said that I had read several reviews on this site and this seems to be a problem with Freestyles and all service advisor indicated was "yeah he has had a few in".

    No offers from service advisor to reduce or goto Ford or anything.

    So I guess I will send a note to Ford Customer Service and see if they do anything - not holding my breath though.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    You don't have to replace them at a dealer. It's just brakes & rotors...nothing complicated for any brake shop.
  • macy0626macy0626 Posts: 1
    I have an '07 Freestyle with 26K miles. I took it to the dealer with 23K on it when my brother discovered worn rear brakes while checking a tire for a puncture. The dealer told me that the brakes were a wearable item and that the warranty ran out on them at 18K miles. I told the service manager that I wanted them to inspect my braking system for defects. I have driven a lot of vehicles for several hundred thousand miles and NEVER thought to check the rear brakes of any vehicle at a little over 20K miles. I have never heard of this on any vehicle before. ">link title

    They would not cover anything. Said the wear was normal for Freestyles and Five Hundreds. I had to replace pads, rotors and calipers. I tried to get a representative from Ford to tell me that it is Ford's position that rear brakes should be replaced every 15,000 miles or so to prevent excessive damage to rotors and other brake components. They would not. I am infuriated by the poor design of the braking system on this vehicle. It is unreasonable! I have owned vehicles that cost a fraction of the amount I paid for this car, and never had a bit of trouble out of them. I am really disappointed that Ford is not standing behind their product. I have always thought Ford to be a reputable company which produced a quality product. Not anymore. I don't know what I will buy next, but it sure won't be a Ford after this fiasco.
  • freealfasfreealfas Posts: 652
    sounds like you were hosed from the dealer, calipers should not have been an issue and needing replaced, that's definitely a defect. As for the pads/rotors there's a bunch of posts regarding this issue and you should be able to make a case to the dealer regarding some compensation. A headache it is but you have a dealer that is really a problem...
  • fordwrenchfordwrench Posts: 70
    Ford just released recall # 07N10. It's a one time replacement or reimbursement for rear brake wear for 3 years or 36k miles. If an AWD Freestyle needs rear brakes, the front will also get replaced free of charge to keep the "integrity" of the brake system. It's about time but maybe not quite enough to eliminate the problem all together.
  • passat_2002passat_2002 Posts: 468
    Hey fordwrench,

    So it's rear only for FWD.. and then front & rear for AWD? Is this correct?
  • catmouracatmoura Posts: 29
    I can not find the recall you mentioned online. Where is it? Is it all yr models? It's about time!!
  • angelpahangelpah Posts: 5
    Where can I find this recall information, I can not find it.
  • I just talked with a Ford service manager and he hadnt heard of any recalls. some more info would be nice.
  • fordwrenchfordwrench Posts: 70
    All Ford dealers have this info on OASIS. It is on the home page and can be accessed through PTS under the program # 07N10. It covers rear brakes on 500 Freestyle & Montego, both FWD and AWD. Only Freestyles with AWD will get a 4 wheel brake job under this program. If a Ford store says they don't know anything about this, run away as fast as you can, they are not on the leading edge of technology, heck their not even into the '90s yet!
  • passat_2002passat_2002 Posts: 468
    Or you can just wait for the official letter to come in the mail.
  • pnewbypnewby Posts: 277
    07N10 Certain 2005 through 2007 FWD & AWD Ford Five Hundred, Freestyle & Mercury Montego Vehicles - Rear Brake Wear


    Frank M. Ligon
    Service Engineering Operations
    Ford Customer Service Division

    Ford Motor Company
    P.O. Box 1904
    Dearborn, Michigan 48121

    July 3, 2007

    TO: All U.S. Ford and Lincoln Mercury Dealers

    SUBJECT: Customer Satisfaction Program 07N10
    Certain 2005 through 2007 FWD & AWD Ford Five Hundred, Freestyle & Mercury Montego Vehicles - Rear Brake Wear


    This program extends the warranty coverage of the rear brake pads to 3 years of service or 36,000 miles from the warranty start date of the vehicle, whichever occurs first. If a vehicle has already accumulated more than 36,000 miles, this coverage will last until December 31, 2007. This program provides one-time replacement coverage, and is automatically transferred to subsequent owners.


    Certain 2005 through 2007 Model Year Ford Five Hundred, Mercury Montego FWD & AWD and Ford Freestyle FWD vehicles built at the Chicago Assembly Plant from Job #1 2005 through November 28, 2006.
    Certain 2005 through 2007 Model Year Ford Freestyle AWD Vehicles built at the Chicago Assembly Plant from Job #1 2005 through Job Last 2007.
    Affected vehicles are identified in OASIS.

    Some of the affected vehicles may have had direct exposure to moisture for an extended period that may have caused the pads to “swell” and create a slight drag condition. Low levels of brake drag might not be noticed by a customer, but could lead to premature brake pad wear and excessive brake dust.

    2005 through 2007 FWD and AWD Ford Five Hundred, Mercury Montego & FWD Freestyle Vehicles

    If an affected vehicle experiences the condition of rear brake pad premature wear (below 3mm thickness), dealers are to replace the rear brake pads and if necessary, turn or replace the rear rotors, if they are below the thickness specification. This service will be performed on affected vehicles at no charge to the vehicle owner.

    2005 through 2007 AWD Freestyle Vehicles

    Due to the configuration of the braking system on AWD Freestyle vehicles the front brake pads must be replaced when rear brake pads are replaced. Therefore, this program will allow replacement of front brake pads, but only if the rear brake pads require replacement during the same visit.
    If an affected AWD Freestyle experiences the condition of rear brake pad premature wear (below 3mm thickness), dealers are to replace the front and rear brake pads and if necessary, turn or replace the rotors, if they are below the thickness specification. This service will be performed on affected vehicles at no charge to the vehicle owner.

    NOTE: Brake pad inspection is part of normal maintenance and is not covered as part of this program. If the vehicle is within this extended time and mileage coverage and the owner experiences a brake system symptom or during a normal maintenance inspection (brakes every 15,000 miles or more often, per the Scheduled Maintenance Guide) the vehicle's rear brake pads are found to have less than 3 millimeters (0.118 inch) of lining material, then Ford Motor Company will cover the cost of replacing the rear brake pads.


    Mailing will begin July 9, 2007.


    Attachment I: Administrative Information
    Attachment II: Labor Allowances and Parts Ordering Information
    Attachment III: Technical Information

    Customer Notification Letter


    Special Service Support Center (Dealer Only) …………….…………………….1-800-325-5621
  • I just want to say what a great help this board has been concerning my rear brakes on my Freestyle. Without this information the dealer would have charged me $491 to fix my brakes, right now he is in the process of crediting back my money with the info I gave from this board.

    Thanks again,
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106
    A few comments:

    1) This means that the brake wear problem is NOT a "design defect".

    2) This means that the brake wear problem would not affect ALL vehicles (which explains people like me who've had no issues)

    3) More interestinlgy, think of what this implies for those who have had MULTIPLE sets of brake pads wear early. Hmmmm.
  • volfangaryvolfangary Posts: 105
    I don't get number 3?
    What do you mean? :confuse:
  • indybellindybell Posts: 40
    The one issue that I don't see addressed, unless I'm missing something, is what is going to be done for folks, like me, who have an AWD and had the rears replaced prematurely but the dealer, at that time, did nothing to the fronts. Has the "integrity" of the brake system been compromised and what is Ford going to do?
  • volfangaryvolfangary Posts: 105
    I would go back to the dealer, show them the recall, and demand they do all four again. They should have never changed rear without changing front on the AWD.
  • Does this apply to someone who fixed thier own brakes, like me. I purchased motorcraft rotors from Ford and raybestos pads from Kragen. Will I be rembursed for my purchases, AND HOW ABOUT MY TIME AND LABOR.
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106
    I don't get number 3?
    What do you mean?

    Think about it.

    What was the reason given for the brake pads wearing early?

    How could a person possibly go through multiple sets of these pads with the same issue, given the reason cited?
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106

    I guarantee you that won't be reiumbursed.
  • fordwrenchfordwrench Posts: 70
    The front brakes need replacing only with the latest level rear pads. The pads that have been used as replacement up until now were of the original design. If after market pads are used, Ford does not know how they stop the car with the factory front pads, they haven't been tested, so there is no way of knowing how the combo works. But, after market pads are supposed to perform as good as the original. The issue with the rear pads wearing out so fast is the fact that they swell with moisture, if you live in a dry climate or park in a heated garage or the vehicle is driven in a way to keep the brakes dry then no problem.
  • passat_2002passat_2002 Posts: 468
    Exactly how much did you pay yourself?
  • mschmalmschmal Posts: 1,757
    Go to the Ford dealer and ask if you can file a claim. They probably will saw no though.

    Remember one of the conditions of the warrenty is the right to do the work themselves ie through a dealer.

  • tim156tim156 Posts: 308
    Do you know when Ford began installing higher quality pads? I have a 2007 SEL FWD with a production sequence number of A07450. I'm guessing it was built before 9/4/2006 because the side air bags, 3-row canopy and perimeter alarm items are in the optional equipment column not the standard equipment column. I have a small amount of dust on the rear wheels when I wash once a week.
  • I paid myself with blood and sweet in the hot california sun. Yes I kept all my reciepts.
  • fordwrenchfordwrench Posts: 70
    According to the recall notice the FWD Freestyle production cut off is Nov. 28 2006 for coverage. Yours would have the old level pads. The AWD goes to end of production for '07s.
  • tim156tim156 Posts: 308
    That's good to know, thanks.
  • I just purchased an 07 Freestyle AWD and had the 07N10 letter that is posted on this site in hand. I asked the salesman what the status was on the brakes on the car I was about to purchase. He told me that all the FSs on their lot had been "checked" and were OK. Does anyone have any idea what they could have checked? :confuse:
  • blue05blue05 Posts: 42
    I went to the dealer to see if I could take advantage of the recall and was told if you used aftermarket pads you are not covered . I explained to them that I still have the O.E pads ,he then said "if you have 3mm of pads life left we can do it "I was told to put my 6mm O.E pads back on and hope they wear down to 3mm before the recall expires . The reason given was that he had to send the {O.E} pads back to Ford .">
  • passat_2002passat_2002 Posts: 468
    Don't talk to your salesman about a technical issue. Go talk to the dealer's service department. But since your Freestyle is brand-new, 07N10 doesn't concern you right now, and won't for some time. It's an extended warranty.. not a recall.
  • passat_2002passat_2002 Posts: 468
    "I went to the dealer to see if I could take advantage of the recall"

    Ok guys.. let's get this straight. It's not a recall. It's simply an extended warranty period on the rear brakes. Huge difference, especially since most never have any problem.
  • theapemantheapeman Posts: 13
    1- the 'design defect' is brake pads that swell and bind when they get wet.

    2- you tried to tell everyone with problems that there was nothing wrong with their cars and it was their fault because they are 'inefficient brakers'.

    3- the replacement pads were the same as the original

    all that talk about heavier rear brake bias to reduce nose dive never made any sense to me - i don't know how that got started but it always sounded like service manager BS
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106
    the 'design defect' is brake pads that swell and bind when they get wet.

    I guess mine must never get wet, then. :P

    I wouldn't call that a design defect . . . at least not on Ford's part. Sounds like whoever designed the BRAKE PADS had a design flaw, though. Or, more likely, just bad materials that slipped through Q/C . . again, not a design defect.
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106
    all that talk about heavier rear brake bias to reduce nose dive never made any sense to me

    So, the front pads didn't get wet while the back ones did? Hmmm.
  • dnashdnash Posts: 35
    Even if the brake pad swelling is the root of the issue, Ford is still responsible for the design and the QC of those pads. I bought them from Ford, not the brake pad supplier.
  • theapemantheapeman Posts: 13
    they don't bind in the front calipers - they do bind in the rear calipers
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106
    they don't bind in the front calipers - they do bind in the rear calipers

    That must explain the reports from people needing to get the fronts replaced, too, because of excessive wear.
  • barnstormer64barnstormer64 Posts: 1,106
    Ford is still responsible for the design and the QC of those pads. I bought them from Ford, not the brake pad supplier.

    Ultimately, it's the supplier who's going to be doing the QC on the pads, not the car builder.

    And I still categorize this as a QC issue, not a "Design Defect", no matter who you want to say is the responsible party.

    I'd sure like to see how "wet" people were getting their brakes who were having issues. I doubt it was very wet . . which is what leads me to believe it's a QC issue in the pads . . not some "design defect" where if you get the brakes wet, you'll have issues. Otherwise, I would've had issues, too.
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