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Ford Escape Hybrid, Brakes, SUV
#119 of 179 Ford Escape Hybrid 2008 Brake and ABS problem
Aug 13, 2009 (4:47 am)
About 2 months ago I had the tires replaced on my 2008 FEH at 34k with Michelin tires better suited to the winter weather we have here than the factory issued tires. Ever since then, occasionally when braking at low speeds, the brakes seem to slip slightly before completely engaging: brake, slip, engage. I brought the car to the dealer twice and both times was told that they did not experience the problem when they took it out on the road. Well of course not, the problem is intermittent and at slow speeds. Then the other day as I was leaving to drive lots of hills where I live, the CHECK BRAKE SYSTEM and ABS warning lights went on. I went right back home, called another dealer and made an appointment. It was a long slow drive to the dealer, not knowing what the brakes would do. They found that the EXCITER RING on the Right Front Axle was cracked and said that this caused the ABS to read incorrectly, perceiving that the right front wheel was moving faster than the other three, thereby causing the ABS to kick in. $400 dollars later (the part cost $37 of that, the rest labor to take the axle out and replace it) I drove home thinking that the problem had finally been solved. I pulled into a parking spot and the same thing happened again, brake, slip, engage. I have a call into the service department now, waiting for a reply.
I have been reading scary accounts on line of FEH brakes failing. Can anyone tell me if they know what the root problem is, if Ford has made any comment, or are there programs to fix the problem. Thanks.
#120 of 179 Re: FEH brake problem: ad nauseum [jurdean]
Aug 21, 2009 (5:27 am)
I have a 2005 FEH and I have had the exact same "brake light" issue". I just brought it in this morning to have it checked out because they told me that "it's safe to drive" but I need to have it checked out. Well I have a 2 year old son and the last thing that I want is for him to be in the car when the brakes become "unsafe". There is NO recall on this just a "letter from FORD" stating that there is a "corrosion probelem with the brakes in the Hybrids. This ought to be interesting.....I will post more later once I know more......
Aug 28, 2009 (6:33 am)
I feel everyone's pain. I have an 08 Mariner 4WD that has the brake 'lock/slip' problem, where sometimes it does a brake, release, engage behavior, and othertimes worse. The other day the rear brakes locked up and I had to drag the back of the vehicle for about 100 yards with locked brakes. Then when I hit the brake pedal, the wheels unlocked and I was rolling again.
The car has been in for service for several days and I have them doing the final repair under the lemon law. They called me last night to tell me that they saw the behavior (which must mean the brake, release, engage behavior) and it is normal for the vehicle and FORD says nothing is wrong. Perhaps I didn't descripe engage properly here because engage on mine means engage to where the wheels in the back nearly lock, then release a little back to where they should be. I guess FORD considers it normal for cars to have brakes lock up, slip and slide on wet roads and ultimately cause accidents.
#122 of 179 FEH brake problem
Aug 30, 2009 (3:12 pm)
much to my surprise the problem seems to have been fixed, at least for the moment.both front exciter rings were shot, one borken and one damaged. Since they were both replaced its been smooth sailing, and in fact, the feeling of instability at higher speeds is gone. The problem here is the lousy design and poor manufacting of this element. the exciter rings are attached to the axle, and exposed to the road. All the grit, all the snow, salt, you name it. They are made of an alloy that rusts, I kept one so can see it is not a great piece of manufacturing. The first one broke clear in half, the other lost one of its "spokes" that sense the speed of the car. DEALERS SHOULD KNOW ABOUT THIS. The first dealer had no clue after several visits, but the second one said that this happens a lot, which is why the keep the part in stock, ad they located in a small town in upstate New York. Bravo to them for figuring it out. Only wish the two visits had not cost $750!
Have the exciter rings checked on all 4 axles. Good luck.
#123 of 179 Re: FEH brake problem [hilltowns]
Sep 01, 2009 (3:11 pm)
Hi Hilltowns, I may have a similiar issue going on with my '07 Mercury Mariner Hybrid...I had my tires changed earlier this summer, and more recently I've been noticing the brake-slip-engage situation. I'm near Manchester, NH and because the problem is intermittent, the dealer in town drove it and it wouldn't happen for them. The problem is getting worse, I copied your post and sent it to them, and plan to bring it back and insist that they check the exciter rings on all four wheels.
#124 of 179 Re: FEH brake problem [owlsnestkid]
Sep 14, 2009 (6:35 am)
about a month ago my 2007 FEH started to jump when braking down to a stop
it would occur at about 15mph or less, intermitently. now it happens often.
i sometimes coast in neutral to a stop sign to avoid it happening. does anyone else experience this? it seams to be front brakes
#125 of 179 Re: FEH brake problem [escapebrake1]
Sep 14, 2009 (2:46 pm)
Hi escapebrake1, I believe you have the same problem I just had fixed. If its a "brake, slip, engage" type situation, have the Mercury dealer check the "exciter" rings, aka "tone" rings within the braking system. They could be cracked. They seem to be a common problem (at least what I've seen). It feels like when you hit the brakes that the brakes suddenly "give" for a second, then engage, correct? Mine were cracked, I identified this problem to the dealer after checking this site.
#126 of 179 Re: FEH brake problem [owlsnestkid]
Sep 19, 2009 (8:09 am)
Being a FWD vehicle the FEH is highly susceptable to loss of directional control if regenerative braking is enabled at low speeds on a slippery surface. During braking, actual braking, one wheel hits a bump at low speeds, loses roadbed contact, and ABS will INSTANTLY disable regen.
What you "feel" is a slight surge forward.
Obviously a faulty "tone" wheel would result in this happening more often.
#127 of 179 FEH brake problem
Oct 20, 2009 (8:38 pm)
I have enjoyed my 2006 FEH and have 60k miles. I've followed all recommended maintenance etc. Two weeks ago the brake warning light started coming on occasionally. I checked the emergency brake..no problem, the car would brake as it normally would, I checked the brake fluid levels..no problem..but the light and alarm would still come on especially when hitting a bump or turning. I thought maybe a sensor and electric problem with the dash. Took it to the dealer who said they couldn't get the light to come on when they drove it..I explained I wasn't imagining it. They took down more info..I became wary of if they knew what they were doing. I was in shock ( to say it mildly) when they said they hooked it up to a diagnostic machine and what I needed was a new master cylinder ($1800.) If the brake light still continued "Ford" recommended a new ABS system ($4500.) Even after they would do this work they couldn't "guarantee" the problem would be solved. I asked why there wouldn't be some other physical evidence that the brakes were bad, ie fluid leak, squeaking, spongy breaks..and was told they didn't know but they had to advise me that this was the "repair" that Ford recommended. I haven't done anything as I want to get a 2nd opinion. After reading what alot of you have said I'm really stumped! Any advice? I too am afraid to drive it!
#128 of 179 Re: FEH brake problem [degu1]
Oct 21, 2009 (11:38 am)
i had the same problem with my 2006. read my previous posts. call ford directly, don't listen to your dealer. mine also said they couldn't reproduce it, so i took a photo of it when it came on and showed them the photo. eventually ford sent someone to fix it (they eventually ackknowleded it was a problem. in one of my posts i listed the fix). they resolved my problem (sort of), the light comes on for me right after i get my car serviced, but then only comes on maybe once more and then goes away. again, call ford directly, go to the website, there is a service number and file a report.