Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
112,500 miles
Total Complaints:
6 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace at $3000.00 (2 reports)
  2. replace converters ata cost of more than $2000.00 (2 reports)
  3. not sure (1 reports)
  4. replace converters (1 reports)
2003 Ford Escape exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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2003 Ford Escape Owner Comments

problem #6

Sep 252013

Escape XLT 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 187,000 miles


Engine misfiring caused 2 catalytic converters to clog. Once clogged, the exhaust back pressure burst the EGR valve and other emissions parts. I've had to change cat 5 times because of the recurring engine misfiring. happens on humid/rainy days. current exhaust system is a straight test pipe and no cats that i daily drive, i put stock exhaust on only for inspection times.

Manifolds are also obnoxiously placed in the most inconvenient spots for owners to change. Requires you take it to a shop. Rear bank manifold clogs up every year and never costs less than $800 to change.

- , Kc, MO, USA

problem #5

Oct 012014

Escape V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

Do not buy this car. Problems since day 1. The fact that this car come with coils.

- , Waterbury, CT, USA

problem #4

Feb 142014

Escape V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 108,000 miles

Water seems to be what causes this issue. We had the same problem a couple of years ago with our 2001 Escape. Our 2003 Ford Escape, after a heavy rain, sputtered and jerked on starting. The engine warning light was blinking, there was no power in the acceleration, and there was a strong burning smell. We were stranded 2 hours from home and had to have a local mechanic look at it. He said the O2 sensor was destroyed and that had caused the catalytic converters to clog. He'd never seen anything like it. All three converters had to be replaced. He was able to do it aftermarket for about half the cost ($3000) of using manufacturer parts (about $7000). That was 8 months ago. Guess what started happening this morning after a night of heavy rain? That's right, we're about to spend another $3000 on this money pit. We will never buy another Ford.

- , Burlington, KY, USA

problem #3

May 242012

Escape Limited

  • Automatic transmission
  • 91,000 miles


First I had the Coils changed. Then I had the back Cat changed. Now they say the 2 front cats have to be changed.. Its just not right. Ford should do something about this,.. I will not buy Ford again

- , Bronx, NY, USA

problem #2

Jan 062012

Escape XLT 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 84,000 miles

I have 2 of the 2003 Escapes. The 1st one had to have the cats replaced at 45000 mi covered under warranty. The 2nd one's cats failed at 8 years 2 days and 84000 mi. Over the warrant by 4000 mi and two days. Because of this, I must now pay $3000.00 to have it repaired.

- , Monroe Township, NJ, USA

problem #1

Jan 062012

Escape XLT 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

This car the catalytic converters failed at 40000 mi. and were covered under warranty

- , Monroe Township, NJ, USA

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