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.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The 2005 Escape has problems where the engine shuts down while driving. Ford finally issued a September 2014 recall. Time will tell if the recall fix really solves the problem.

However the 2005 Escape also has a defect where the PCM (Power Control Module) fries at around 100k miles. Ford extended the PCM warranty to 80,000 miles, but only after most owners were past the mileage limit. Now owners are on the hook for the average repair cost of over $2,000 (!!)


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
115,775 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Ford Escape body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2005 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 13 of 15)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #47

Jan 132014


  • 180,000 miles


The passenger side rear wheel well rusted through causing the shock absorber to float freely. There is a section aprox 24 inches long by 2-6 inches wide where the metal has rusted out and is completely gone. This vehicle makes a hard slam whenever driven over small bumps. The shock has come through the plastic panel and put a large crack/hole in it. This vehicle has become unsafe to drive and excessively expensive to repair. This vehicle is from Michigan.

- Warren, MI, USA

problem #46

Jan 202014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 85,000 miles
Loud banging sound from right rear wheel sounding like loose muffler upon further inspection I found the inner wheel well with the shock mount to be completely rusted away. Trying to get it fixed and no one can put a price on the repair and most body shops are afraid to do it. Called Ford customer service about this very unsafe problem and they don't want nothing to do with it.

- Southington, CT, USA

problem #45

Jan 062014


  • 153,527 miles
The rear shock mount went through rusted wheel well and into trunk.

- Youngstown, OH, USA

problem #44

Dec 262013


  • 110,000 miles


2005 Ford Escape. I have noticed rust on rear fender wells in the past. In summer 2013, I found a hole into the passenger area from the rear passenger side wheel well. Filled hole and attempted to undercoat to prevent additional rust. December 26, 2013, while driving I hit a bump and heard a loud banging noise in back right hand side of the vehicle. Driving became difficult after the bump, so I stopped to investigate the issue. The shock had separated from the uni-body/wheel well due to corrosion. The noise was the shock hitting the plastic interior of the vehicle. I did some research on a replacement panel and I found this is an ongoing issue with the Ford Escape with numerous examples of this same issue. It appears that the right passenger side wheel well of the Ford Escape has a design flaw causing the shock to separate from the uni-body. Driving become difficult during this failure as the vehicle is riding on the spring and the shock is not able to reduce the tire bounce.

- Shelby Township, MI, USA

problem #43

Nov 202013


  • 160,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Escape. The contact was driving approximately 10 mph over a speed bump when a loud noise came from the rear of the vehicle. The contact stated that a three inch hole was discovered on the passenger's side rear wheel well, exposing a damaged shock absorber. The vehicle was diagnosed by an independent mechanic and the contact was informed that the defect was not repairable. The manufacturer was not notified of the defect. The failure mileage was 160,000.

- Broadbrook, CT, USA

problem #42

Aug 012013

Escape 4-cyl

  • miles
2005 Ford Escape...the right rear fender well has rusted out around the shock mount, ready or close to breaking free. First body shop wouldn't even quote a repair. Googled issue and found 100's of other owners of 2005's with same on facebook matched my cars situation exactly. Why no recall?

- Medina, OH, USA

problem #41

Nov 082013


  • 130,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while sitting inside of her vehicle, she began to smell exhaust fumes. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where they stated that the subframe had corroded and created a hole inside the rear end of the vehicle. The subframe was repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 130,000.

- Minnesota City, MN, USA

problem #40

Nov 182013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 103,000 miles
2005 Ford Escape limited has a safety issue so bad that it's unsafe to drive. The right rear fender well has rusted out around the shock mount, ready or close to breaking free.

- Okemos, MI, USA

problem #39

Sep 052013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 100,500 miles
After a recent road trip, I heard a clunking noise coming from the rear passenger side of vehicle. Checked items in cargo area, spare tire, jack and even checked to make sure back seat was secure. Clunking noise was the shock hitting the underside of vehicle. The shock assembly was no longer attached, it was rusted under the wheel well around the shock assembly. So with every bump in the road, it was clanking around. Vehicle was not safe to drive for fear that the shock would break and cause a tire blow out or worse cause an accident. I took it to a private auto body shop which cost me $900 to repair the damage. The drivers side wheel well is doing the same thing and I may not have a fuel tank eventually. This needs to be addressed and taken care of. I love my vehicle and love not having a car payment too.

- Blue Grass, IA, USA

problem #38

Oct 042013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 205,900 miles
Thumping sound from right rear of cargo deck. Upon interior inspection, no loose items in cargo area, no loose panels, and jack was not loose. Upon exterior inspection noticed rusted out portion of wheel well. Can see into interior (back of interior panel, carpeting, etc.). seems that thumping is due to wheel or suspension parts being improperly supported due to corrosion of/in area of wheel well. Specifically, shock and/or large coil spring are hitting interior panel(s) of vehicle.

- Ann Arbor, MI, USA

problem #37

Sep 022013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 125,000 miles


The right rear wheel well has rusted out. This makes it a huge safety factor because at anytime the shocks can break free and bust upward into my truck. I took my 2005 Ford Escape to my mechanic and he said that in the last 2 months he had seen 4-5 2005 Ford Escapes with the same problem. It is all the same right rear wheel well. There is a facebook page with 195000 members following it so I know that I am not alone. Problem is that half of the country is not in an area that has rust. So southern Ford Escape owners are not going to be affected by this. This cannot be ignored because not all 2005 Ford Escape owners have this problem. Environmental conditions would show you that all 2005 Ford Escapes would have this if put to the same environmental factors. This needs a recall. It is an easy fix. Ford already fixed it with the newer models. Just weld in a new right rear wheel well. This is frustrating because I know it is a real problem with this model, but the environment is what is saving this from being a national issue.

- Amherst, OH, USA

problem #36

Sep 292013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 141,052 miles
The right rear inner wheel well rotted leaving the rear shock support unsecured making the vehicle unsafe to drive. After researching on the internet, found that this was a common issue for this year and make vehicle. Does not appear that Ford wants to take any responsibility for the faulty manufacturing and/or materials.

- Medina, NY, USA

problem #35

Sep 172013


  • 115,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Escape. The contact stated that the vehicle made a rattling noise while driving. The contact inspected the vehicle and found that the rear passenger's side wheel well, struts and shocks were separated due to severe corrosion. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer and was not repaired. The manufacturer was made of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 115,000.

- Pinckney , MI, USA

problem #34

Sep 092013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 126,000 miles
This safety issue requires immediate attention by both the NHTSA and Ford: 61 NHTSA complaints filed to date: '04- 16; '05- 45. Vehicle taken to Ford dealership for service. Service notified that a forward lower ball joint was failing, no other defects were noted in the detailed visual inspection. It was replaced two days later. The following day of the repair, on a daily commute between tol to dtw, the right rear shock tower separated while driving at 70 mph. Vehicle began dog-tracking. Initial inspection did not reveal the hidden damage caused by corrosion at the welded seams of the inner wheel well due to an underbody coating. Upon removing the undercoating, very easily by hand, two large sections removed, revealed the shock was penetrating the interior of the vehicle and was no longer being structurally supported by the vehicles uni-body frame. The large sections removed would have caused tire failure at highway speeds by puncture or hazard to other following vehicles. The separation of the shock tower from the body, did cause the vehicle to jerk at the time of failure, creating a loud popping sound and causing potential hazard as the vehicle steered into other lanes of traffic at highway speeds (70 mph). The vehicle is rendered inoperable due to the catastrophic nature of the failure. Local Ford dealership states they are uncomfortable repairing the structure and not aware of any manufacture recalls. In contacting their sister dealership, they have previously repaired this defect, and continued on stating this failure is a known issue with 2004 - 2006 Escapes. The failed panel is available, P/N:part 7L827827886A. A reinforcement piece is also available. See example picture here: facebook site concerning this safety issue:

- Luna Pier, MI, USA

problem #33

Jul 092013


  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Escape. The contact stated that upon inspection it was found that the driver's side rear suspension tower was completely rusted and rendered the vehicle inoperable. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where the failure was confirmed and the contact was informed that the part was no longer manufactured. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 80,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Crystal Lake, IL, USA

problem #32

Aug 242013


  • 50,000 miles
As we are driving along we hear a very loud banging coming from the rear of the vehicle.when we get out to inspect the area we find the rear pasenger side wheel well is extremely rusted thru and chunks of the well are actually falling out. We took the car to the Ford dealer and they said it cannot be repaired!!!! by the Ford dealer....then we took it to several auto body shops that said they cannot fix this! several places said Ford used faulty metal or undercoating and that is why it rusted so badly.the car has only 50000 miles on it and has been highly maintained...I finally found an autobody shop that will replace the entire wheel well and theer will be no guarantee it wont happen again or to any of the other wheels!!! I feel totally ripped off! I read online that several other people have had this same problem.

- Bridgeview , IL, USA

problem #31

Aug 172013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 140,000 miles
The right rear upper shock mount completely rusted thru the trunk area&was protruding up about a foot into trunk area-very glad I wasn't going fast when this happened!!most likely would have lost control of vehicle!!!!!!!!!this is one of Ford best ideas ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!very thin sheet metal with a thicker piece welded to it to support 1 side of a vehicle.yeah, that is common sense at the finest!!!!! thankyou Ford engineers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!&designers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! these same common sense people hopefully put out a recall so people can get it fixed&get some money back!! I did have mine fixed right away_it's the only vehicle I have.

- Kennerdell, PA, USA

problem #30

Jun 262013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 155,000 miles
I had been hearing some loud noises from the back end of my car for a week or so, we had thought the spare tire and equipment hadn't been put back properly so we re-adjusted it and thought we had fixed the problem. A few days later the sound started back up. Then it got really loud and there was a loud pop. Upon further investigation, we found out the entire wheel well had rusted out in a perfect circle around the shock. The shock was no longer attached to the car. I took it to Ford and they told me this had been recalled on their mini-vans for the same year. Ford body shop staff informed me that this was the only rust on my vehicle and this rust would not be caused by mis-treatment of the vehicle nor normal wear and tear of any car. Ford is currently unable to get the wheel house to fix the car and it will not be available for "months". once I researched this a little more, it appears to be a highly common problem in the 2005 Ford Escapes. The car is not currently fixable or drive able.

- Lenexa, KS, USA

problem #29

Jul 292010


  • 48,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Escape. The contact stated that upon inspection, it was found that the passenger's side rear shock had penetrated the body of the vehicle due to rust. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the failure was confirmed. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 48,000. The current mileage was 90,000.

- Orchard Park, NY, USA

problem #28

Jul 242013


  • 112,000 miles
The right rear shock mount has rusted out, and now bangs against the wheel housing.

- Houghton, MI, USA

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