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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
8 / 0
Average Mileage:
92,021 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.

2009 Ford Escape steering problems

steering problem

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2009 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 9 of 11)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #49

Feb 142014


  • 123,932 miles


Went to drive my vehicle and sped up to 45 mph and lost all the assistance in power steering. Felt like I could not turn the wheels at all. I slowed down and barely pulled into a parking lot. Told my kids everything will be ok. Started up the vehicle again and it was fine until 10 min later...same issue. Almost wrecked twice with the kids with me.

- Dodgeville, WI, USA

problem #48

Feb 152014


  • 139,967 miles
While driving around a curve, my steering tightened up and I realized my power steering had malfunctioned. I was able to make the curve safely but steering was extremely difficult. It is my understanding that the electronic power assist steering had malfunctioned and it is not an uncommon problem.

- Topeka, KS, USA

problem #47

Jan 032014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving approximately 25 mph off an exit ramp, the power steering assist failed and caused the steering wheel to become extremely difficult to turn. The contact shut off the engine and once restarted, the power steering assist had independently reset. The failure was an intermittent recurrence. The vehicle was taken to the dealer but was not diagnosed to determine the cause of the failure. The manufacturer was not notified of the defect. The failure mileage was 105,000.

- Ashland, OH, USA

problem #46

Jan 212014


  • 70,000 miles


Power steering goes out without any warnings. Can be out if you turn the car on. If you turn the car off and you start it again the power steering may come back on. Most of the time you have to disconnect the battery and reconnect this usually will fix the problem for a day than you have to disconnect the battery again. The power steering has also gone out during driving as well. I feel that this is a huge safety hazard is may cause accidents.

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #45

Jan 302014


  • 128,000 miles
First time happened after starting vehicle, I noticed there was a loss of power steering when backing out of a parking spot. This was resolved after I restarted the vehicle. The next time was 2 days later when I in the middle of turning my steering wheel to get off the highway. Power steering cut out completely, thankfully I was the only one around because it took a second to grab the wheel tighter and turn. I have read many accounts of the same thing happening, why hasn't there been a recall? I drive on the highway everyday and it is essential to safety that I am able to steer. I have to live with this for now because I cannot afford a $1200-$1800 repair when I just put money into this car. Also I now notice that my wheel has a lot more "wiggle room" with steering as well as a grinding noise that never was there before.

- Westfield, MA, USA

problem #44

Oct 112011

Escape 6-cyl

  • miles
While driving during both incidents the vehicle lost all power steering, stalled, and engine started missing. Tuned vehicle off then tried to restart and wouldn't click, continued missing. Rpms would rise without any movement. Turn vehicle off again to restart and it started correctly. While always driving the vehicle it will jolt while moving as if the transmission wasn't catching gears.

- Killeen, TX, USA

problem #43

Jan 282014


  • 62,000 miles


The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving approximately 20 mph, she heard a loud noise followed by a sudden loss of power steering. The steering wheel had become extremely difficult to maneuver in a vibrating motion. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 62,000.

- Dallas, TX, USA

problem #42

Jan 242014


  • miles
The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. The contact stated while driving approximately 35 mph there was a sudden loss of power steering which caused the vehicle to travel out of its lane unexpectedly. The contact was able to regain control and continue driving with difficulty in maneuvering the steering wheel. There was no warning indicator illuminated. The failure was not diagnosed nor was the vehicle repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 116,000.

- Kknox, IN, USA

problem #41

Aug 012013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 150,000 miles
Started engine and power steering was not working. Looked up in manual and it said it will go into manual steering if power steering get hot. This has happened a few times but then the power steering would work after each occurrence. Now the steering chatters and shakes the steering wheel even when in park and engine off.

- Posen, MI, USA

problem #40

Jan 092014


  • 110,000 miles
While slowing down to make a turn, luckily with no traffic present, the steering wheel locked up and became almost impossible to maneuver. As I was making my turn into my work's parking lot the steering failed, mid turn, and I was unfortunate enough to slam into a snow bank that was piled up on the edge of the corner. This was hardly a crash, but a crash none the less. Little cosmetic or body damage was incurred but the fact that my vehicle, which touts strong safety ratings, was in an instant unsafe for the road due to a design flaw in the eps system makes this reviewing hundreds of posts about this same issue, nationwide, it seems that I am not alone in my frustrations that Ford should do something to make this right. Steering is undeniably an essential function of operating a vehicle and being in possession of such a vehicle, that I still am making payments on while struggling through school makes the neglect from Ford highly offensive. It seems that a nationwide back order for a part that is so essential to a vehicle's operation would be appropriate for some sort of recall / compensation for the part needed. Something needs to be done.

- Holt, MI, USA

problem #39

Dec 312013


  • 90,000 miles


The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while traveling various speeds, the power steering assist suddenly failed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 90,000. The VIN was not available.

- Riverton, UT, USA

problem #38

Dec 202013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 56,800 miles
Safety issue: My 2009 Ford Escape's steering wheel began to shudder/vibrate at idle. In addition, when the vehicle is started, the steering wheel cannot be moved left or right. It locks up. I have to shut the vehicle off and re-start it in order to get the steering wheel to move. Today, I was driving down the road at approximately 45 mph and the steering wheel completely locked up. I could hardly control the vehicle, but was fortunate enough to get it to the side of the road. This could have been disastrous. I had to shut the vehicle off again and turn it back on in order to proceed. This vehicle only has 57,000 miles on it. It has had the regularly scheduled maintenance on it since I purchased it new in Jan 2009. I am extremely concerned about this being a safety issue. I have researched online and have read other complaints on this issue, and would like NHTSA to investigate this based on safety issues. The situation that I experienced today could have resulted in serious injury or fatalities. The consumer had to pay for a new steering column, at 56,000 miles. Updated 02/24/14

- Las Cruces, NM, USA

problem #37

Dec 302013


  • 140,000 miles
Driving down the road, I was trying to det over when all of a sudden the steering acted like it was locked up and very difficult to turn. I pulled over to the side of the road and turned the car off and then turned it back on. The problem quit. This is the 4th time that this has happened and is very scary.

- Shawnee, KS, USA

problem #36

Dec 272013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 107,668 miles
I was driving down the freeway from albuquerque to las cruces when my steering became almost impossible to turn the wheel. I quickly pulled off the freeway and called my boyfriend to ask him what to do. He said restart your car see if that resets it. It did work. Then later I parked and the steering wheel just started shaking vigorously. This has happened six more times since then ranging from speeds of 20 to 75 miles and hour. I have read online about this problem and it seems to me to be a very unsafe thing to have happen while driving at high speeds on the freeway. Very scary when all of a sudden you can't steer or its very hard to steer. I also don't understand why Ford would replace the whole steering column versus just the sensor. If I would have been in a big turn and it had stopped working it could have been a horrible wreck. If there is anyway possible that this could be a recall to replace the sensor or column it would make everyone driving feel that much more safer on the roads. Thank you for help with this matter.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #35

Dec 242013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 143,000 miles
I purchased a 2009 Escape new. The vehicle now has 142,00 miles and is having an issue. My wife called me on December 24 2013 and said that the car was hard to steer. She said that earlier in the day she was turning into an entrance to a gas station and misjudged where the ramp was and the curb and hoped the curb with drivers side front tire. She said she heard a loud noise and continued to drive into the station to get gas. I told her the noise was most likely the strut bottoming out. I asked her how was the steering after that she said it was fine. This took place in the am. She called me around 5 pm. And said the car was hard to steer again I told her to turn the car off take out the key and open the door and then close the door and restart the car as this would rest all the electronics. She did this and everything was fine. I told her I would look at it when I came home. She called me again around 6 pm and said the same thing happened. I told her to turn it off and restart it again. This cleared up the problem. After getting off work I came home and crawled under the vehicle to see if there was any damage. I found no damage. December 26, 27 she called me and said it was having the same problem.on Dec 27 we where going to take the family out to eat and the steering became hard for me to steer. I turned the car off and reset, issue cleared up. As I was driving I could feel the steering wheel pulsating. I went to dealership, pulled into the service lane and noticed that while in park with the vehicle running the steering wheel pulsated back and forth by it self. The mechanic said that sometimes low battery voltage can cause the problem. I said I was aware of that and did a load test on battery and it is fine as well as the charging system. I went out today Dec 28 and stared the vehicle and there is no power steering. I tried it twice both times the same result.

- Savoy, TX, USA

problem #34

Sep 152013


  • 129,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. While driving 65 mph, the contact stated that the vehicle began to shake. The contact also stated that the steering wheel became more difficult to turn. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the incident. The VIN was unavailable. The approximate failure mileage was 129,000.

- Fort Worth , TX, USA

problem #33

Sep 112013


  • 140,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving 20 mph, the power steering suddenly malfunctioned as the steering wheel became very difficult to turn. The vehicle was not repaired. The contact was not informed what caused the malfunction. The manufacturer was notified and no solution was offered. The failure mileage was 140,000. The VIN was not available.

- West Covina, CA, USA

problem #32

Nov 042013

Escape 4-cyl

  • miles
I was traveling on the turnpike when all at once my car jerked then lost power, I was unable to steer the car so I coasted on the median till the car allowed me to turn onto an exit ramp. My husband came and checked the truck, it started and seemed to be okay. The entire month of November the truck starts however the steering wheel is locked. I have to cut the car off and on at least 6 times while trying to turn the wheel before it unlocks and allows me to move the steering wheel. My husband called the Ford dealer and was advised that the entire steering column would need to be replaced, and I would have to bear the cost. I don't feel this is fair because I researched this matter and found there are a lot of complaints about this matter. I am not able to drive the truck because I'm afraid there could be a catastrophe. I think something should be done to fix this matter. Thanks

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #31

Dec 012013


  • 13,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. The contact stated that the steering wheel became hard to turn without warning. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer to have a diagnostic re repairs performed. The failure and current mileage was 130,000.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #30

Nov 242013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 85,505 miles
Our 2009 Ford Escape has lost it's power steering, while I was driving, twice this week. It was nearly impossible to control the vehicle, yet it was still running. It is electric power steering so there is nothing that can be done to prevent it (I initially thought my power steering fluid must be low). The first time it happened, on Friday, I had it towed to my mechanic. Nothing showed up on the dashboard at the time and nothing showed up on his scanners. When the truck was started again the steering worked fine. We decided it must be a fluke. We only have 85,505 miles on the vehicle. It just happened to me again, while I was driving. My husband was supposed to drive to our friend's house North of boston (we are South of boston). He cancelled. It terrifies me to think of what might have happened to him at high speed on those highways. We got on the internet and discovered this is a very common problem in 2008 & 2009 Ford Escapes. It turns out the entire steering column needs to be replaced to fix the problem, average cost is $1500. Ford is aware of this dangerous life safety problem yet has not issued a recall. Do people really need to die first?

- South Weymouth , MA, USA

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