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Ford Escort Wagon



  • ronchi1ronchi1 Posts: 3
    The escort LX wagon needs a $28.00 timing belt, not chain. The labor cost here in Idaho is $125.00 (2 1/2 hours labor) and you might as well replace the two other belt(I think for the A/C and alternator). The two belts are $6.00 each. I had mine changed in January 2000 and what a waste of money. The mechanic showed them to me and they were still like new. The car had 106,000 miles its odometer. It is also due to the style I drive it that has made it the best car I have ever owned. I have pressed the accelerator pedal to the floor maybe four times in the seven years I have owned it. Due to the lack of power of this car there is no point in pushing it. You will get there eventually. This weekend I will install a new CD player since I think it will last another 100,000 miles, and I would like to improve the confort factor. The only complaint I have is lack of power, bad factory stereo system, and I still feel cheated because I had to pay extra for a part in the front suspension system that would allow the front wheels to be aligned.
  • Thank you very much for the excellent information! I am the one who was getting the "check engine" light. Yes, it was the oxygen (O2)sensor!
    I am happy to hear that your timing belt lasted this long.....I will see how long mine lasts. (After all, I have a cell phone and AAA and they can tow the car for me once it dies!).
    It's good to see that mostly everyone seems very pleased with their Escorts. Since the resale value of this car is lousy, I am planning to keep mine until it falls apart(it's a third car for me, mainly to transport my dog around, haul stuff, and drive when I want to save gasoline money). The fuel efficiency on this car is terrific (compared to my Mustang GT and 6-cylinder Isuzu Amigo!) And yes, the Excort has no power and takes some getting used to. The other day, my daughter was in the Escort with me and she said: Mom, you can pass this truck in front of you, the road is all clear. And I said: I would like to pass, I am standing on that gas pedal as far as it will go down, but I can't.
  • jrangerjranger Posts: 3
    I bought a '96 escort lx station wagon last week.
    It's got 68k, manual trans, sadly no tachometer.
    Seems to be in relatively good condition. I had my mechanic check it out before I bought it and everything checked out ok. He did say that I should have the timing belt changed soon because it was an "interference engine". I had never heard of such a thing before. But the way he explained it was that if the timing belt should break while I'm driving, the pistons could interfere with the valves resulting in serious damage. If anyone has any info on this topic or any suggestion I'd be happy to hear them. He gave me an estimate of $425 which includes timing belt, water pump thermostat and maintenance. I'd like to put this off as long as possible, but am worried about the risk. I'm also curious if anyone has had problems with their rack & pinion. Someone had commented once that this was a recurring problem on their escort. I would appreciate any comments. Thank you.
  • pbb98pbb98 Posts: 19
    jranger- That "interference" is when one of the pistons hits a valve, usually bending it. A bent valve won't close correctly and could cause bad or no compression. I say do all that maintance now. If you're going to have to do it anyway, why put it off and risk damaging your engine?
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    I know of two Escorts that went out at about 75K miles. Sister's 1991 and buddy's 1996. Both city driven however.

    My brother had a 1991 and drove it to 100K miles in 3 years. Only had to get a new alternator at 80K. He wished he had kept it longer!
  • mark191mark191 Posts: 2
    I am in the plans of purchasing a 95 escort wagon with 94,000 miles for $3,700.Is this a good price, are these good cars etc etc any help would be appreciated. Thanks. p.s. It's a 5 spd.
  • misssam1misssam1 Posts: 2
    My sister has a 1995 Escort wagon that she has put more money into than she should have. I think part of it was her fault for not sticking to the maintenance schedule recommended by Ford. However, she had trouble with things that I never had trouble with on my 1989 Ford Tempo even when it was out of warranty. Most of the problems have been major engine ones like transmission, belts, hoses, alternator, starter, etc. It runs but she wants to get something else that is more reliable.
  • jrangerjranger Posts: 3
    Last week I bought a 96 escort wagon, 5 spd.,with 68k, for $4500. NADA blue book priced it at over $4600. I hope this will help. Keep in touch!
  • brownbrown Posts: 10
    I bought a '99 Escort wagon new last April. I have always had to rev the engine to keep the idle high enough when at a stop. The engine will sometimes stall when I am waiting my turn at on onramp, or in line at a drive thru, and sometimes when I am backing out of a parking place. I notice this happens more when I am on an incline. I mentioned this when I took the car in for the 5000 mile checkup, but nothing was done. When I took it in for the 10,000 check, I took the service manager out for a ride, but of course, it didn't stall. He did notice the idle was a bit low, but he says this is set at the factory now. The problem still exists. Has anyone else had this problem? I have never had this problem with the other stick shifts I have driven, so I know the problem lies with the car. I will be taking the car in for the 15,000 mile check in a couple months, and I want this thing cleared up. Can anyone help?
  • billigbillig Posts: 1
    Has anyone had an aftermarket sunroof put in
    their s/w? My wife had an aftermarket unit put
    in her civic and has had no probs. I'm
    wondering if anyone has had any experience w/
    these. I need as much sun as I can get up here
    in the Northeast.
  • mark191mark191 Posts: 2
    thanks for the feedback on the purchase of the 95 escort wagon.I still haven't decided,I think it has too many miles.Although I have had some good comments on the wagon.
  • jillisajillisa Posts: 3
    My 94 Tracer wagon (see above post) stalled in park and in park while idling. My problem was the idle motor. Once that was replaced, and the O2 sensor, all was well. Check that out, hope this helps. : )
  • jillisajillisa Posts: 3
    I have a 94' Tracer station wagon that I have owned since new. It has 106,000 miles on it and I have had not a bit over trouble until it hit 100,000 miles. My mechanic was baffled by this problem: my #4 cylinder blew and the head needed to be replaced, plus the pistons went bad and needed to be replaced. It cost $825 to fix and that is the only major work ever needing to be done in 5 1/2 yrs. Once, at like 45,000 miles, the motor mounts shifted but that was fixed under warranty. We had maintained it really well, so that could be why we have had no problems. This piston/head problem was really strange, my mechanic said. The pistons, he said, is a common problem with these cars, but i don't know about that. It does make an odd ticking sound, but all the ones, new and old, make the same exact sound. This car has done good by me but it's time to get a minivan. I have decided on the Nissan Quest because the Windstar sounds like a real nightmare. I am trading in my wagon for about $2,000. Only complaint I have about the wagon is that with the 1.9 engine, it is really slow.
  • I bought my 99 Escort wagon in Sept of 99. In october of 99 is when my car started having problems. The thermostat wasnt working....In other words...I had no Heat. To make a long story short, my car has been in the shop 7 times, has recieved 7 thermostats, 1 brand new engine, and a new air conditioning compressor. Can Everyone say LEMON??????I have drivin a ford taurus more times than I have driven my ford escort, (loaner cars).
    It is just recently (this week) that Ford has finally decieded to buy back my car and let me pick a new one. I have decieded to pick a 2000 Focus since ford doesnt make escort wagons anymore. Not only has It been an inconvenience, but now its costing me an extra 1000.00 to upgrade. The lemon law in New Jersey is 3 times fixing the problem or 18000 miles or 2 years, which ever comes first. So if you are having problems with ford, dont wait 7 months like I did, fight after the third time and Ford will eventually cave in. Im very upset because this is my 4th escort and I have never had any problems. I guess this has made up for all the other cars.
  • twill84twill84 Posts: 6
    I am considering purchasing a 1997 Ford Escort Wagon. It is a 5 speed with 26,509 miles on it. The only thing I don't like is that it was a fairly base model when new so it has no roof rack. Does anyone know if I could get one put on it and if so for how much? Thanks
  • rgreasyrgreasy Posts: 7
    In mar 99, I bought an escort wagon, 1999/ll864 miles. thought it was a good buy, fought with the dealer and ford for a year, On Mar 9 ,2000, it was declared a lemon & b ought back by ford, had to repay me all moneys & money I had paid loan co. just a bad smell from a/c vents. NOT!!
  • rgreasyrgreasy Posts: 7
    excuse me, it was an 1997 wagon
  • dmeldmel Posts: 4
    Getting ready to say good-bye to my '95 wagon, purchased 12/95 used, but still under factory warranty. She now has over 92,000 miles on her with only a major transmission meltdown at exactly 60k. Currently, the problem is as follows:

    There appears to be some sort of intermittent problem with the starter. Shortly after I had the transmission work completed, it simply would not start/turn over without encouragement on rare occasions. Finally, it became more and more frequent and then wouldn't start, so into the dealership she went. Of course, she started for them under all conditions and she was given a clean bill of health. Since then, it takes even more fiddling to make her start when she won't (i.e., pressing and holding the brake, putting it into neutral), and additionally, it will now turn over but not catch without lightly pumping the gas pedal or the previously mentioned tricks above. Any ideas?

    Additionally, ever since I had the timing belt replaced in '98 or '97, the check coolant light has remained illuminated. The only time that it went out was when I had a new battery dropped into her, and then it illuminated again after the transmission work. Mind you, she needs no coolant, so just some weird wiring going on, I would suppose.

    In spite of all that, I'd still recommend her; she's done right by me.
  • ronchi1ronchi1 Posts: 3
    about three weeks ago I bought a desk at Staples. I had to use the racks on my 93 escort wagon. When I slid the desk on the racks for the first time ever, I have never put anything on them I turn to my wife infront of the employee helping me pick it up and I said to her: "Honey, we finally get to use your racks". (It's her car). I had to appologize for about an hour. Oops. Anyways, I just bought a 2000 Escort ZX2 thanks to the advise of the ZX2 bulletin on Edmunds. Let me just tell you it does not feel as solid as my 93 escort. I do not think it is going to last as long.
  • dmeldmel Posts: 4
    I'm about two weeks off from making the same choice, ron. I would expect that the feel of a subcompact would differ greatly than that of a wagon. What do you mean exactly when you say that it doesn't "feel as solid?" I'm going for a test drive this weekend myself, so we'll see.
  • ronchi1ronchi1 Posts: 3
    What I mean by solid is quality. I already had to take the XZ2 to the dealer they missed a pin that holds the brake pedal in place. I also have more wind noise that the 93 escort did not show when new. the transmission has kicks in when cold. I am starting to get scared. The Zetec engine though is really nice compared to my 1.9 in the 93 escort, but will it wear off faster?
  • goblue4goblue4 Posts: 1
    Hi! I'm new to the list and was wondering if someone could help me with a decision: We are considering by a '92 Escort Wagon which has 60K miles on it. They are offering it for $2700. I "Blue Booked" it and it lists for around $3500. I am concerned about potential maintenance problems. My sense is that the 60K miles was mostly city driving which makes me wary. Does anyone have any advice? We need to make a decision on the car in the next couple of days, so it would be helpful if I could get some of your expert opinions!!!
  • mikusmikus Posts: 109
    I am thinking about getting used '93-'96 Escort/Tracer Wagon, so I got a couple of questions.
    1. I've heard that some models have motorized seatbelt and some don't. Is it true (hate it)? Is it a standart equipment or an option? Can it be changed to usual three-point seatbelt?
    2. Is it true that airbag became standard only in 1994?
    3. Were any wagons built with 1.8DOHS from Mazda?
  • pbb98pbb98 Posts: 19
    mikus: 1. I'm pretty sure all of them come with motorized seat belts. They do take some getting used to. 2. Not sure about airbag. My '93 doesn't have one. 3. As far as I know, no.
  • tmontowskitmontowski Posts: 1
    I have a 93 escort wagon and I am having two problems with it that my mechanic has not been able to solve. One of the problems is that while I am driving the fuel cutoff light and the brake light come on occasionally together. I could be driving slow, fast, uphills, down hills etc.. It seems to be pretty random. The lights only stay on for a little while and the performance of the car does not change but, If the lights are on when I stop the car, the car will not turn back on. If I sit there a little bit or sometimes an hour then the car will start. I have replaced the ignition and pulled the starter and had it looked over but everything looks good. Anyone experiencing the same thing or have any advice?
    The second problem is when I am sitting at a traffic light or just letting the car idle, I get this nasty smell which seems to come from under the hood. The engine is clean, I am not burning any oil or fluids and I don't have an exhaust leak. Anyone have any ideas what could be causing the smell?
  • tp8tp8 Posts: 1
    I have two escorts, a 94 wagon with 65000 miles and
    a 95 2-door with 56000 miles on it. Both of them seem to be burning oil. Every 700 miles or so I have to add a quart. They both were consuming oil normally up to few months ago. I never had had to add oil between changes before. Can any tell me why this happens and if there is an in-expensive cure ?
    Thanks !
  • trichard1trichard1 Posts: 1
    I have a '95 Escort wagon (67,000 mi) and a '93 Tracer wagon (64,000 mi), one for each of my two teenage daughters. I bought them both used and they're a great value. I hope that both of these cars will see my kids through college. The Escort I've had for a year and it initially had a problem stalling, but that turned out to be a sticking pcv valve. It has a slight shimmy at 70 mph, though, and new tires haven't completely fixed the problem. CV joints are fine.

    The Tracer I just picked up last week. It has a slight hesitation when accelerating from stop. Any idea what that could be? Another stuck valve?My first pass is run some high octane gas in it for a few tanks with some STP treatment to see if it will clean up anything fouled. Both cars are in immaculate condition and my kids love 'em. I have an option to pick up a 24 mo. extended warranty on the Tracer for $1000, but I don't think I'm going to need that much in repairs over the next 2 years. Any thoughts?
  • spectre3spectre3 Posts: 67
    find someone that has a ford code scanner and snap it in to the diagnostic port. if all is well,
    go over the basic's, tune-up, fuel filter , etc.

    there are a lot of things i would check before i turned my daughter loose in the car!!!

    ford must have added that shimmy as standard equipment. mine has one (95 lx) also. balance and new tires did not help....

    good luck,

  • spectre3spectre3 Posts: 67
    when you are done with the car for the day, place a piece of clean cardboard on the ground or garage floor overnight to check for fluid leaks.

    how clean are your engines & compartments looking under the hood??

    are you sure you are not overfilling the crankcase? 4.5 quarts of oil in my 95 lx (1.9l)
    puts the level about 2/3 way up between add and the top line on the dipstick. that 1.9liter engine will blow out any overfill.

    its odd that two cars with similar mileage with that kind of oil usage. before the 1985 lx i had an 86 escort pony. it had a bunnnch of miles on it, and never required any add oil between 3000 mile changes...

    my 2 cents..

    good luck & best wishes,

  • eminor2eminor2 Posts: 1
    hi everyone. new to the site, and just wanted to say how much i appreciate all the comments on the ford escort wagons. read each and everyone.
    however, it is now may of 2000, and unfortunately i have'nt won the piggly wiggly (a grocery chain in the south for all you northerners - affectionately refered to as the hoggly woggly by us suthern folk) "free cash lotto" yet. i went lookin at used cars today because the 88 baretta we have is really a piece of junk that has produced nuthin but headaches. i have run across a 93 ford escort that appears to be a good deal at $1990, but it is now two years after the earliest letter posted on this site.
    my question ya'll think it might still be a good purchase?
    thanx for any input,
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