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Ford Escape Hybrid Owners: Problems & Solutions

Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
edited March 2014 in Ford
Post any problems you may be experiencing and share solutions with othe members!

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  • bobv1bobv1 Posts: 4
    I have a 2005 Ford Hybrid and on several occasions the ABS and brake lights come on after starting the car. If the ignition is recycled the lights go away but if you ignore them the car is very difficult to stop. Now I am also getting a "service emissions" message. The dealer verified the codes but does not know what to do to fix the problem.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    Hmm, maybe you should open up a "Ford Escape Hybrid Software Problems" forum. This sounds like a programming error.
  • bobv1bobv1 Posts: 4
    Well they replaced the ABS module and it did not fix the problem. I agree that considering there was also a "check emissions" message that something more generic was the problem. Two more days in the shop.
  • I have had my Escape Hybird since March 19th and have one problem. When the vehicle starts I get a face full of seeds, leaves or pollen. The dealer looked at the vehicle and said Ford failed to install the cabin air filter when they built the truck. The dealer did not have a filter so they ordered one on April 3rd. Now they are telling me the hybird does not have a cabin air filter ! I found the part on the MotorCraft web site and told the dealer about it and they said they will have to talk to Ford again. If these things don't have cabin air filters, everyone that has one must be driving around in a vacuum cleaner bag too!! Is anyone else having this problem ?
  • stevewastevewa Posts: 203
    All Escapes (including hybrid) have a place to put a cabin air filter. None of them come with one installed.

    You can buy the filter from your dealer or use an aftermarket one. I bought the Wix equivalent at the local parts store for about $15. The install is a little involved but quick to do. Cycle the wipers and shut off the ignition with them in the upright position, then you have to remove the 4 screws (they're covered with round plastic covers that pop off with a small screwdriver...don't let them fly off or you'll never find to remove these with the hood down!) along the bottom of the windscreen on the passenger side, pop out the plastic "rivets" along the front edge of the same side's cowling cover then lift the section of cowling up and out of the way. Under that is another cover (keeps the filter in place and dry) which comes off revealing the filter box. Put the filter in there, put everything back together and you're good to go.

    The dealer will charge a fortune to do this for you, if you are at all mechanically inclined I'd reccomend doing it yourself.
  • Thanks for the info - if the dealer balks at making a customer happy , I will do it myself as you suggest...
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    I and many other Escape owners used the Fram version from WalMart. It costs about $5.
  • gheimurgheimur Posts: 88
    The 04 expedition has a place for it also but came without. Ditto for my wifes
    2001 escape. My 1996 Taurus came with it from the factory. Ford is saving $$$$
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    To create a location for a cabin air filter and then not provide one shows a lack of interest in customer satisfaction by FMC.
  • stevewastevewa Posts: 203
    Note the Fram filter is an engine air filter, not a specific cabin air fits okay but it's not absolutely perfect fitment.

    As to Ford's not including the filter, it's clearly a money-making opportunity for the dealer. They fetch about $20 for the part plus a half-hour labor, I'm sure.
  • bobv1bobv1 Posts: 4
    Reference ABS problem:
    Got the car back after three days. They changed the "jumper harness" and the battery. So far so good. I did get a "service emissions" message on the display but I read that this is normal if you turn the key to run but do not start the car.
  • jimlanejimlane Posts: 2
    I have had my Escape Hybrid about 3 weeks now. The first tank I averaged 29 mpg. I sure hope it gets better.

    Any experience or suggestions?
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    29 MPG combined is pretty decent for that vehicle. It will most likely get better as you learn more about conserving fuel and how to drive for max mpg, if that's what you want to do.

    As the car breaks in it will have less engine friction and will operated more efficiently.

    But 29 MPG combined is not bad for the first 3 weeks of ownership.....
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    That's probably about right. Unlike the Prius and other pure hybrid sedans, the Escape has a large frontal profile that impacts MPG (the effect worsens as the speed increases). Plus the Escape is quite a bit heavier than the smaller Prius.

    You are still doing about 7 MPG City and 5 MPG highway better than my I4 ICE-only CR-V... not too shabby.
  • sstootssstoots Posts: 3
    I went to change my oil yesterday, crawled under the truck and couldn't find
    the oil filter anywhere!

    Anyone know where this sucker is? There is some plastic cowling underneath
    that could conceal the filter. I pulled it back a bit, but didn't see anything.
  • earear Posts: 6
    If you want to totally eliminate the wind noise in the cabin of your Escape, try threading some vinyl tubing into the weatherstrip around the door frames. I know this sounds hokey, but this worked extremely well on my Hybrid, was super easy and caused no damage, plus the final product is totally invisible. Now the loudest thing is the tire/road noise. This took me well under an hour.

    You’ll need a can of silicone spray lubricant and about 20 ft. of ¼ in. OD (outside diameter) clear vinyl tubing (smooth, pliable and compressible, like the stuff in science lab class). It is sold by the foot at home centers for .10 - .20 /ft. Use your fingers to gently pry off the black rubber door seal weatherstrip that is attached to the body of the car located on the door frames (where the perimeter of the door touches the body of the car). Start at the front of each door opening and work your way around. This will not damage the weatherstrip- it is not glued on, just hooked over a metal seam running the length of the door opening. Lay the weatherstrip straight out on the ground and thread the vinyl tubing through the hollow part of the weatherstrip. Spray the silicone on the tubing while feeding it through the weatherstrip to lubricate its path. If it gets stuck, spray silicone through the small holes in the weatherstrip in the path of the tubing. Leave an inch or so protruding from each end of the weatherstrip. Reinstall it by simply pressing it snugly into place. Make sure you tuck the leading edge of the weatherstrip well below the body panels on the front. Once it is reattached, press the tubing that is inside the weatherstrip to the outside edge of the weatherstrip so the door closes with an airtight fit. Use ¼ in. OD clear vinyl tubing because you won't be able to fully close the doors around anything more rigid or larger than that. The tailgate door and glass can be done the same way.
  • earear Posts: 6
    I'm late to the forum, but thank you stevewa- I installed the cabin air/pollen filter as you described. My dealer's service mgr. (No. Calif.) said the filter is an "option" that can be ordered when purchasing a car, therefore I would have to pay for it. Dealer wanted ~$30, I ended up buying it at Napa Auto Parts for abt. $20 and it fit well.
  • Just thought I would pass along my spitting seeds resolution. The dealer said Ford told them Hybrids don't have cabin air filters. They said they would call Ford back after I provided them with the facts. I never heard back from the dealer about the filter , but did get a recorded message from the "customer service manager" wanting me to call them if I wanted to sell my new truck! I bought the filter myself and put it in and don't have to wear a dust mask anymore. (Thanks stevewa) I am approaching 2000 miles with no other issues. With about 80% of those being highway miles , I have an average fuel econ. of 31.8 mpg and it is still climbing ( slowly).
  • stevewastevewa Posts: 203
    Glad to be of assistance. Apparently none of the Escapes come with the filter installed, but they all have the box where it goes. It seems Ford thinks it's a good opportunity for the Dealer to score a few quick bucks.
  • richburkrichburk Posts: 2
    Anybody encounter this? For the past few weeks, the hybrid would shut off completely when turning off the car. Dead. Nothing. Each time it seems to take a little bit longer before it might think about starting. Last night we stopped at the store before going to the movies and turned it off. Got out. Went to lock the doors with the FOB and nothing. It would not lock. I got in. It was dead. No radio in the ACC position or any position. Just dead. It remained that way until, I pressed on the brake for the umpteenth time and then the engine made a clunking sound like a old fashioned hard drive from the 80's would unpark when you turn on the computer after having moved it. I doubt that is the issue, but that is what it reminded me of. My wife took it to the dealership this week for its second oil change and described the problems to them. They also screwed up and had to keep it for two days longer because they broke the O ring when putting on the oil filter/cartridge. They did not have any on hand. Fortunately they provided a rental car at no cost. However they did diagnostics and found no issues. The onboard computer apparently doesnt log this particular problem. Last night after the movies we got home and the problem occurred again. Only it has been 12 hours plus at this point, and it wont start. No radio, no windows, no alarm. Nothing. I called the dealership. They said to call roadside assistance. So I have and am now waiting. They told me it would be 60 minutes or less. Then they called back and said it would be 2-2.5 hours now. Living 30 minutes from the nearest city, I guess, would do that.

    I feel very slighted by all of this, as this is the FEH that was on of the centerpieces at the Washington DC Area Auto Show in December 2004.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,178
    Welcome to the forum. Be sure and get back to us with what they find is wrong. That will make this a good database for troubles that are encountered.
  • richburkrichburk Posts: 2
    Roadside assistance shows up. Pops the hood and checks the battery terminals first. Something that I should think that the Ford mechanics could have checked. He found one of the terminals loose. He tightened it and it started right up. He said that the car battery controls the internal electronics while the hybrid battery controls the electric engine.

    So I am happy again.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 12,029
    rich... reading you problem a few posts up, i went through the same thing years ago with one of my wife's cars. glad to see it is resolved. maybe the tech was so afraid of being electrocuted, they disconnected the battery.
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2014 Ford F-150 FX4
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    " maybe the tech was so afraid of being electrocuted, they disconnected the battery."

    Pretty stupid tech then, the two electrical systems are independent...
  • ...29 mpg is about my experience. I got my Escape Hybrid in Nov of '04 I think the best I've ever seen the readout say is 31.

    Have you had any problems with your rear brakes making noise? I've had my in the shop now twice for problems they haven't been able to fix.

  • talariatalaria Posts: 16
    I did not want this issue to get mixed in with the noise coming from the right rear wheel posted above.

    I am curious if I am the only one that thinks the gas engine kicks in too quickly upon acceleration.

    Unless I press the accelerator VERY,VERY, VERY gently and creep away the gas engine turns on. I am not one of those persons that stomp on the gas and race to the next light. But it is ridiculous to creep away slower than I can walk for a substantial distance in order to stay in electric mode until 25 MPH, somtimes plus, is reached. I do my best to ignore the other drivers honking and sometime yelling while I try to stay in electric mode.

    Perhaps this is a programing error. But it can't be right. My neighbor has a Toyota Prius and can accelerate at a reasonable, not fast, but reasonable rate and stay on electric.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "Perhaps this is a programing error. But it can't be right. My neighbor has a Toyota Prius and can accelerate at a reasonable, not fast, but reasonable rate and stay on electric."

    The Toyota Prius is a much lighter car. You are driving a 700 extra pound SUV. It takes HP to get that much metal going.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,178
    I do my best to ignore the other drivers honking and sometime yelling

    That kind of driving will have more of a negative impact on the hybrids than you may think. I was stuck for several miles behind a hybrid Escape going up Interstate 8 a few months ago. Traffic was flowing 75-80 MPH and this person was going 45 in the right lane. I thought it was all the faster the car was capable of going until I found out it was some kook trying to save a few ounces of gas. I can appreciate your trying to get the best mileage from your car. Just not where it impedes the normal flow of traffic.
  • stevewastevewa Posts: 203
    "Staying on electric" is not always the most efficient mode to drive. If you spend a lot of time in electric you will end up having to pay that back by running the engine to recharge. If the engine is idling to recharge it's much less efficient than it is when at a slightly higher RPM to move the vehicle and recharge at the same time.

    My advice, don't worry about it unless your vehicle is not shutting down the engine at all.
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    I guess you are impressed by Escape hybrid so you, CRV owner, comes here and participate. :)

    What are you planning, sell your CRV and buy one of these puppies. ;)
This discussion has been closed.