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Ford Escape Seats



  • I just called my local dealership and asked about a November 6th memo regarding Ford replacing the fabric seats in the 2008 Escape. They knew nothing about it, and when entering the VIN for my Escape it showed no recalls or action to be taken. The only thing the rep did say is that if a memo is circulating, it may take a long time to become a legit recall.
    So, I'm skeptical that Ford has even done this. If you have a copy of the memo please fax it to 866-465-0388. I would love to show it to my local dealership.

    FORD: 2008-2009 Escape Hybrid, Escape

    Some 2008-2009 Escape and Escape Hybrid vehicles (excludes Mariner) equipped with Cloth seats (excludes XLS) and built on or before 5/14/2009, may exhibit stains with a white ring outline around them. An updated seat cover is now available to reduce this specific type of staining.

    Follow the Service Procedure steps to correct the condition


    Inspect the seat cover stain for a white ring outline.

    If the white ring stain is present, then replace the seat cover with latest level part. Refer to Workshop Manual (WSM), Section 501-10 Seating Disassembly and Assembly.


    ***Thought I would help those of you that need this info...yes I work for a dealer***
  • wow, thanks! i'm calling my dealership today.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Thanks VG - it's nice to have someone in the biz like you who can give the other owners the scoop!
  • No problem... only trying to help!
  • Yes, thanks again. Hopefully it will spur some action.
  • As anyone had any luck getting their seats replaced by the dealer with this supposed new recall? My seats are looking even worse after this snow we got today!!
  • my dealer her in NH has th actual TSB. your dealer should, too. he says that orders are pouring in from all over for the replacement seats. the only catch is that the stains *have* to have white rings around them. my front seats qualified, but the back seat (which has a different stain, doesn't--maybe i should throw some water on it, see if i get the white ring). look at the stains to see if they have the telltale white rings, however faint. one of the seat stains was indeed very faint, so light i couldn't see it, but the service manager said he did. contact yr dealership--they all have the TSB.
  • My seats were recently snowed on and once again are stained with the yucky white ring. Disgusting. I called the dealership prior to the snow event and at that time he knew nothing of what you are calling the "TSB". I will pursue again. Thanks!
  • I recently purchased a 2008 Ford Escape with fabric seats. I made the carnal sin of allowing spots of water to touch the seats while tossing in the newspaper. The next day it looked as if a bootle of soda had spilled . The effort to clean this off only caused more issues until I cleaned off the entire seat using foam cleaner. Of course I'm afraid to go out in the rain and re-enter the car for all the seat damage that will occur. How ridiculous is that? I found this forum which confirmed the problem is rampant. If I can be put on a list of dissatisfied buyers,put me down! Unbelievable.
  • When I read above about the TSB Ford had issued on the Escape Seat Staining problem, I went right over to my local Dealer. I had complained with no results when it had 25000 miles on it, and was just over a year old. Still under Warrenty. Now it has 43,000 miles on it, and the Warrenty is up. The Ford Dealer spoke with Ford, and they looked at the pics. from when it was a year old. They say they dont see the white rings around the stains in the pics. Now, the Rings are CLEARLY visable, but because of the mileage, They are not going to replace them. As alot of you have stated these stains also come in an ugly Babys^%t brown. Some of which I have also. Not Pretty, and the first thing you see when you get in the vehicle. So basicly Ford admits fault in their product, but when I;ve complained since the vehicle was nearly new, UNDER WARRENTY this was their fabric, They say my stains appear to be from use. Give me a break. I even have a dark stain on my headrest! I said to the dealer, That didnt come from anything I put in my hair!!! Thats for sure. He had no reply. I think their splitting hairs here, Trying to keep their outlay of Coverage minimal. So case closed. NO NEW SEAT COVERS FOR MY 2008XLT ESCAPE. So its not such a sure thing. This will definately be the last Vehicle I ever buy from Ford, And I tell everyone who asks about the Vehicle about my displeasure. Its too bad, I like to buy American, in the hopes of keeping Jobs HERE. Thought this info might be useful to some of you in the same place with your mileage. I wish everyone luck. There's another active Forum on this same issue. The exact TSB info is there posted, as well as another bunch of dissatisfied people. Go to I would post the exact link, but its too long to fit on one line here. I dont think it will work l
  • Dear Oldbottleman, I was just wondering if you have those wonderful Continental tires on your Escape too? We too are so dissatisfied with our Escape, it only has 28,000 miles on it (also a 2008) and all 4 tires need to be replaced because they are all severely cupped already!!! We had that car in every 5,000 miles and had the tires rotated, so that just tells me that the dealership was rotating bad tires. They claimed that it happened from hitting potholes or a curb. My husband was always commenting on how loud the inside noise was, but I didn't think it was that bad, until lately. I drove home to Mom's in Ohio with one hand over my right ear because it was so loud!!! We had to have the leaky transmission problem fixed, although that was still under warranty, but the tires are our problem. The car is so loud because of the tires, it is deafening and you can't even hear the music!! I had the stains all over my seats, and I got the Turtle wax foam cleaner with Oxy in it. I sprayed the whole seat, so that it looked completely dark, and then wiped them down with very hot water and a rag. When they were dry, I Scotchguarded the living crap out of them and hoped for the best. So far they look pretty good, but we will see. I actually don't care if the stains come back, I want people to see what a piece of s**t my car is so maybe they won't buy one. We are done with Ford forever!!!!!!!!!! Once that warranty is up, (my husband bought the 5 yr. total wrap warranty) that piece of nice looking junk is getting traded in!!!!
  • oh, great. my front seats are being replaced (but no the back one that has that brown staining) and now i have to be concerned about the tires? they actually get a very good rating from consumer reports. when did you start having problems with them? my 08 XLT has 21k miles on it.

    just looked up consumer reviews on this tire. almost everyone hates it. overall complaint: they wear out way too fast. thanks for the heads up!
  • in the escape seat complaint thread, someone mentioned that her continentals have had big problems. so far, i've been ok with mine, but with mileage at 21k, i could start experiencing problems. what would you out there recommend for replacement tires? i live in NH, so snow and ice are a factor.
  • The tires are junk, making the car very loud! The transmission leaked within the first 3 months I had my 2008 Escape as well but was repaired under the manufacturers warranty. My seats are a complete embarrassment and I have been to Ford's corporate office about it as well - twice! The first time customer service sent back a form letter saying they would prefer to talk on the phone, so I called. Then I was readily dismissed because I was past warranty. No consideration by Ford in regard to the horrible fabric used in the vehicle. The TSB was an interesting development but I haven't heard of any success by anyone managing to get a dealers service department to act on that. Also, TSB is not listed on Ford's website area where the current TSB's are listed.
    I won't buy another Ford again either. I am about to put $550 worth of new tires on the Escape so it can be inspected. Can't wait to see the inspection techs face when he gets a look at the front seats of the car where it looks as if very unmentionable things have taken place there, the result of a recent snow we've had.
    Ugh, I'm totally fed up!
  • We started having problems with the tires quite a while ago. My husband was always driving and complaining about the inside noise, I didn't notice it nearly as much as him, but other people would ride in it and comment on how loud it was. Just watch for your tires to cup. They said that it happens from the car being out of alignment, but for as long as my husband thought that it was too loud, it must have been out of alignment when we bought it. We just went yesterday and put new Michelin tires on it for about $800, Merry Christmas to us!! It sounds so much better, now we can hear where all the wind comes in the car.
  • my transmission leaked, too. the dealership admitted to the defect (they had just replaced the faulty part on a fleet of escapes). until they were able to get the actual TSB on the seats, i didn't have any luck on their acknowledging the problem. i was surprised they had the bulletin as, like you, i didn't see it posted on their website. i will definitely keep my eye on those tires. i bring the car in every 7500 miles for an oil change and tire rotation. i'm already researching different brands of replacement tires and keeping my fingers crossed that these continentals stay decent past the 21k i have on my ford. thanks for the heads up!
  • I am currently looking into buying Leather seats out of a wreck at a Junkyard. You have to get all the airbags reset though if they have gone off. I'm told this can be costly. Have seen some grey Leather Seats, but not the Camel Color. It may run my 5-700 bucks to do this though. Dont know if I can stomach that. May try what others have said, and soak the whole seat with cleaners others have mentioned, and hope for the best. They really cant look much worse. I also have the Continental tires on my Escape. I have rotated them faithfully, and watched pressure closely. I have always felt they made alot of Roadnoise, and others have commented on it. They do seem to break traction easily as far as Hidroplaning. The Tread is getting down there, especially considering the Crazy roads I drive on, and how much snow we get. I wont buy another set for sure.
    I wasnt going to get into my Transmision issue on here, but in a nutshell, With no indications there was trouble, My Transmision went from fine to undriveable in about 50 miles. This was at 32,000. Luckily I got home. Called Dealer, they got it on a flatbed, Called to say a main seal had gone, leaked all the fluid out, and they were going to put in a RE-MANUFACTURED Tranny in my Escape. A week later I got it back, and have not had a problem yet. I never saw a drop of fluid anywhere I park. I left work that day, and there was no fluid in my spot. This coming summer I will be towing an 1800 LB Boat. Will see how it likes that. At least theres a 5 yr 60,000 on the Transmision. They gave me no problems.
    Thats just like them to replace only the seats with the ring, and not do the ones with brown stains. I thought was losing it, as these stains just started appearing from nowhere in a new car. These brown stains are surely their issue as well.
  • These vehicles looked so good on the lot, didn't they? I am not having transmission problems, but I AM suffering with the HOPELESSLY STAINED SEATS and the tire issue. However, I don't blame the tires; there appears to be excessive negative camber on my front driver's wheel. (They aligned it - didn't fix it) I'm on a second tire on that wheel and it has now cupped too and it makes a horrible reverberating road noise with each revolution, being most irritating between 45-60 mph. Two other issues that are driving me insane are that the driver's window is rubbing something inside the door and making a squealing noise as it goes up and down, and the serpentine belt chirps on acceleration with the A/C engaged. I have also heard other Escapes/Mariners/Tributes do this as well, seemingly only the 2.3 L4 powered ones do this. I am currently conferring with Ford and if I don't get satisfaction I'm making a mini-documentary and throwing it on YouTube.
  • That is a great idea to put all these issues on Youtube, we should all do that. Did you try my idea with cleaning the seats? It really worked and that was about a month and a half ago. I don't know if it is cold now where you live, so you will have to wait for warm weather, but my seats still look good (knock on wood). You have to be able to let the seats dry in the sun, so that might not be an option for you right now, but I am pretty happy with how they look now. My husband said that if we just spent over $800 on new tires, and these get ruined too, because this car is still out of allignment, the Ford dealership is getting this car back, right through the showroom window, and then they will pay for the new tires that we already had to buy. Thanks for sharing your story and good luck.
  • i don't get why every dealership is not replacing seats as they all have that TSB. have you asked them about this? the new upholstery looks good. it's exactly the same as the old. hasn't gotten wet yet, though, even with all the snow we got. supposedly whatever process is making those stains has been eliminated. we'll see. i feel that all stains that won't come out, or get worse with cleaning, should've been addressed. i'll keep an eye out for white ringed stains on the back seat. if they appear, i'll see if i can get the back seat covers replaced.

    last may i noticed the tranny fluid leak (at about 15k miles). luckily, i still had fluid left so they only had to replace the seal, not the whole tranny. did you end up getting a brand new tranny or did you have to go with a re-manufactured one? how were they able to do the latter if the car's under warranty?

    last week, when the weather got very cold, the low tire pressure light came on. since i couldn't find an air pump with a gauge, i ended up at the dealership. of course, they charged me to fill the tires and reset the computer (they were taking advantage of all the people showing up with the same problem). what worked out was that i needed a couple filters replaced (i had missed doing this @15k miles). so i was ok with it. i don't notice any excessive noise from these continentals. even so, when it comes time to replace, i will get another brand.
  • Heh, I finally got so fed up I started looking for an alternative vehicle. As of December 23 I now own a Certified 2008 Trailblazer and I am very happy. It was so gratifying to tell Ford "You know what, just forget it, I traded for a CHEVY, and I am now free of your Escape's problems." I have owned many GM vehicles and have been generally happy with them, and I got a great internet price ($2,500 below NADA, helped with negative equity). Ford Customer Service "regrets that I am no longer a member of the Ford family." Well, I don't share the sentiment. They should have done something sooner. I couldn't even get their attention until I got the BBB involved. Good riddance.
  • WOW, good for you, we should all dump these cars!! I know that the day that our extended warranty is up, my husband will be dumping ours!! Good luck with the new car!!
  • sfem29sfem29 Posts: 1
    I guess i have been lucky I haven't had any problems.This my secound 2008 Hybryd.Totaled first one I didn't even have a scratch on i guess air bags are good. no staining(did have everything scotch guarded when purchased.
    My tires have 35000 on them and they still are okay,probably about 5k left,consideing they are OEM don't think that is so bad.i must be lucky or crazy but I love mine.
  • marypalmarypal Posts: 10
    I was parked next to a silver Escape, the other day, looked to be about a 2008, and just for s**t's and giggles, I thought that I would peek in a look at their interior. OMG, it looks like someone threw up on the front seats and then put shaving cream all over the top of that!! The stains were so bad, and they had the white rings all over the stains too. I was hoping that they would come out of the store before I left, so I could tell them that they could get them replaced. I thought that mine looked bad before I cleaned and scotchguarded them, until I saw the other car!!! 2 months and still looking good, keeping my fingers crossed!!!
  • mine's fine, too. it's a 2008 xlt i bought last feb. used. 11k miles on it. the replacement seat coverings are a vast improvement--they've gotten wet with snow and there's no staining whatsoever. the tires or OEM, too, continentals, the ones others are complaining about. with 22k on the car now, they seem fine. except that i don't think they handle all that well in the snow. when it comes time to replace, i'll look for another brand. overall, i have to say i love my car and, fingers crossed, if it does well over the next 6-7 years, i would go with another ford. i also am very happy with the local dealership..again, so far.
  • yeah, my front seats were looking pretty bad and i'm guessing that the original owner of the car didn't have kids (as the back seat had no stains at all). as i said in a previous post, replacing the upholstery is key. the new stuff is repelling water as i would expect so they must have eliminated whatever it was that was causing the problem (replacing one nasty chemical with another, i'm sure).
  • Our 2009 escape was getting stains on the fabric, water or snow touched the fabric we got stains. stain removers only made the stain worse. two trips to the dealer and a call to ford finally produced results. there is technical service bulletin #09-23-3 dealng with this issue. dealer agreed to replace 3 of our seat covers under warranty. after waiting 4 weeks for replacement cover, the dealer agreed to furnish a rental car while ours was being repaired. One of the covers had a burn in it, another the stiching was bad in a seam. The dealer has tried to have more covers, they are on back order. so after 3 days in a rental car, I have one cover replaced and now waiting again. my salesman tells me ford is no longer using the recyled material
  • my covers were backordered, too. took maybe 2 wks. nice that yr dealer is giving you a rental. i didn't ask for one as it only took a couple hrs to replace the front covers and i was able to wait @ the dealer's for them.
  • i have a 2004 escape. when i bought it, it already had a stain on the seat. i used blue coral fabric cleaner to remove it and it worked awesome. however my seats are horrible now. they stain very easy and the fabric cleaner does not work and they look horrible. i no longer have a warranty on my car. how much would it cost to get my seats replaced? its an embarresment!
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