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CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2013 Ford Escape has been in the news quite a bit and for all the wrong reasons. Within a few months of its release the SUV was recalled three times, twice because of engine fires.

In July 2012, due to a fuel line that could split and leak, Ford told owners to park their cars because even driving to the dealership for repairs was deemed too dangerous. Instead, in a somewhat unprecedented move, Ford sent tow trucks to pick up the affected vehicles and handed out rental cars while the owners waited for repairs.

A few months later the Escape was recalled again because antifreeze could leak out onto the engine due to a freeze plug becoming dislodged. As the coolant hit the hot engine there was, once again, a threat for fire.


pretty bad
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 4
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
6,082 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.

2013 Ford Escape electrical problems

electrical problem

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2013 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #27

Feb 272014


  • 37,498 miles


Driving in parking lot fan speed accelerated and then engine shut off. I tried starting again 3 times and the same thing happened. I called aaa and had the car towed to Hyundai dealership in reno where we purchased the car. There was a smell of burning in the engine. The dealer reported the smoke was coming from under the hood of the air compressor clutch coil is internal short cause burning smoke. They recommended replacing the air compressor. Ford said my car is not included in their recall list.

- Mound House, NV, USA

problem #26

Jan 102014


  • 3,500 miles
The left light went out. Went to dealer to get the light bulb changed. After an hour, they updated me that "some" electrical failure occurred and that it could take "hours" to fix. It for sure is covered under warranty, but now I am skeptical to drive this car. And this car is new, and under 3 months old with about 3500 miles. Incident occurred on Friday evening. Took to dealer on Saturday morning. Was told they were out of bulb, and to wait until Tuesday. Took to another dealership. They were kind enough to get the needed part (bulb) by Monday. Took to them on Monday. They put in the bulb. Then realized power wasn't reaching the bulb point. So had me get it back in on Tuesday. Checked on Tuesday, to find out it was the BCM (body control module) that was out. So had to wait another while they got the part. Finally got the vehicle delivered on Wednesday evening.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #25

Nov 302012

Escape 4-cyl

  • 1,669 miles
My Ford touch / sync program and display screen are erratic, unreliable and dangerous to use. The system will randomly cease operation resulting in a blank display screen. Occasionally it will resume operation and reboot itself. Most other times, the vehicle must be stopped and restarted for the system to resume operation. When the screen is blank, the driver must take their eyes off the road to operate radio, climate control and other vehicle functions or at times cannot operate them entirely. My dealer has twice updated the software to newer versions and now tells me no new updates are available, but these problems continue. The value of this vehicle has greatly diminished due to this ongoing significant defect.

- Sobieski, WI, USA

problem #24

Nov 252013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 13,000 miles


Now that it is colder out, my car has gone from overheating to misfiring from the defective cac/torque converter in this car. I've noticed that the misfiring does not show up on the check engine light or was able to be read by my obd reader. Misfiring can ruin the catalytic converter and cause emission issues. It is illegal in California (where I'm a resident) to not follow the obd II protocol for reporting emission problems since we have this inspected for registration. When my car has overheated, only Ford was able to pull the code & I also didn't get a check engine light. It's apparent now that Ford has rigged the obd in this car so that only they can retrieve codes. Misfiring is easy for you to replicate to verify my statement. Unplug one cylinder, start the car, see if you get a flashing check engine light and a P030X code.

- Palo Alto, CA, USA

problem #23

Jun 152013


  • 11,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while stopped, the front collision chime began to sound. The contact stated there was snow on the front end of the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnosis where the technicians were unable to duplicate the failure. The contact was informed where to disconnect the fuse in order to stop the chime from sounding. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 11,000.

- Silver Creek, NY, USA

problem #22

Aug 102012


  • 7,143 miles
Purchased Aug 2012 had nothing but problems since day one wipers, rattles in front end steering stalls on take off also a gas smell strong makes eyes water wife will not drive car I am a retired Ford tech 20 years experience with Ford.

- Mobile, AL, USA

problem #21

Aug 202013


  • 15,617 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving at an unknown speed, the driver began to smell an electrical burning odor. The vehicle was stopped on the shoulder and before the keys were removed from the ignition, flames engulfed the vehicle. The contact was able to exit the vehicle without injury. The vehicle was destroyed. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 15,617.

- Fort Dick, CA, USA

problem #20

Aug 072013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 1,276 miles
My wife and 6 year old grand daughter were traveling East bound highway 190 and vehicle started smoking from the vents and shut off in traffic. My wife wrestled the stalled car to the media where itt died. I had just traded a 2011 Escape with a similar problem. It only had 28 K in mileage and it never made warranty.\ Ford wont even return my calls.

- Killeen, TX, USA

problem #19

Aug 072013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 6,171 miles
Was driving on manetto hill road in plainview, NY when vehicle stalled. No power to the accelerator. Kept pressing the gas, and the car didn't move. No warning chimes, no appearance of anything wrong-radio was playing, ac, etc. Was able to pull over (roll to the side of the road), put the car in park and restarted it. The computer then showed "engine fault service now" drove to a local gas station, though the car was bucking and difficult to drive. Car was then towed to dealership service station. Have learned that there are multiple tsb's issued for my car, but no recall. Parts are not available so the car remains at dealership service station. I was lucky I was not in rush hour traffic or on/getting on or off a highway when the car died. I shudder to think what would have happened then.

- Plainview, NY, USA

problem #18

Mar 252013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 5,817 miles
2013 Ford Escape sel 2.0L. Recurrent issues with "engine fault service now" displaying when car is started (first instance at 5817 miles, now at 11K and still happening). Results in rough idle, poor shifting, harsh acceleration. Can be reset with restart so the error must be visible and the car driven (in terrible and unsafe condition) so the dealer can validate the condition. Condition validated at dealer twice (has occurred five times total) computer has been reset twice, map sensor has been replaced. Issue still occurring with no proposed repair to resolve.

- Palm Beach Gardens, FL, USA

problem #17

Jun 242013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 2,200 miles


While driving, in humid weather conditions the vehicle lost power and began lurching, shuddering and jerking. Center, driver side screen (behind steering wheel) displayed "engine fault - service now". was able to drive about a mile back home in "limp mode". I shut off the engine, waited and then restarted and all seemed ok. Next day I went to the Ford dealer's service and explained the problem. They could not pull any codes and said it was probably just a "fluke".... it's happened again twice more this week since then. It's not a "fluke". Ford engineers need to get involved here to determine the cause of the problem, and communicate with the dealer service centers, and issue a tsb fix or recall. It's become a serious performance and reliability concern, and a very serious safety issue as well. I can find similar complaints to mine all over the internet, yet Ford claims ignorance of any problems."??"

- Batavia, IL, USA

problem #16

Mar 032013


  • 4,580 miles
When the start button of the vehicle is pressed, the instrument cluster and synch panel of the vehicle will energize but the starter motor will neither turn over nor engage. This problem is intermittent and has neither been reproduced nor correctly diagnosed at a Ford dealer service department. No errors codes have ever been recovered from the vehicle immediately following the malfunction when a Ford mechanic has searched the system. The vehicle has been returned to the dealership multiple times with none of the attempts to correct the problem being successful.

- Hatfield, PA, USA

problem #15

May 162013


  • 2,500 miles
My Ford touch radio malfunction

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #14

Apr 252013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 6,500 miles
Starting around 6,500mi, Escape would not start without a jump start. After several days of calling tow trucks for these jumps, took it into Ford dealership. They swapped battery and said that's all it needed. After a week, Escape engine cut out at while stopped at red signal light. Engine warning lights for oil and battery came on, and nothing else. Pushed car to side of road and after waiting for tow for 20 minutes, I tried to start engine again and everything came back on as if nothing had happened. After two days of "all systems normal, " I went to start the engine and it began to shake violently and a "engine malfunction-service immediately" warning came up on the dash. I tried to pull car out of parking spot and it had almost no power. Barely putted along despite my really giving it the gas. Parked and had it brought to Ford dealership again. On arrival they pulled a code P0106 off reader. It's been there for 10 days and they say they can not reproduce issue, and have made no repairs. Still waiting for news.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #13

Apr 202013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 9,100 miles
Saturday morning, 4-20-2013, after I filled up my gas tank at the station, when I started the car the insync system did not turn on. The screen remained blank for at least 5 minutes, when I reached my destination and stopped the car the screen turned on and it was downloading to turn on again. System works fine now. The dealer was not concerned when I called. They said as long as it is working now it is a non-issue, I spoke with [xxx] at North brothers, the service rep. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Redford, MI, USA

problem #12

Feb 102012

Escape 4-cyl

  • 6,000 miles
The check engine light came on and averaged 15mpg highway getting to the dealership. They said it was the knock sensor. They replaced it and 24 hours later check engine light on again, same mpg. This time they say its the computer needs to be changed. One month later, check engine light on again with a fault and the engine surges.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #11

Jan 312013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 3,000 miles
I purchased a 2013 Ford Escape in Oct 2012. It has been in service three times for the same issue. Faulty engine light "service now" but computer didn't capture any issues with vehicle. First time dealer changed the mass pressure air sensor. The second time they contact Ford which told them to upgrade the computer software, this time I called to have the manufacturer send the Ford engineer which states it is the onboard computer. He emailed Ford for the diagrams since vehicle is new and not available to the dealer (so that is what I am being told). The dealer has no idea of what the problem truly is. Finally contact manufacturing who states it is a computer component. Vehicle still at dealership for repair. It is a safety hazard due to the lunging and hesitation of the vehicle when you depress the accelerator. It doesn't have enough power to get you out of an intersection if needed. It lunges forward as if the transmission is defective or the fuel injectors.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #10

Feb 012013

Escape 4-cyl

  • miles
2013 Ford Escape. Consumer writes in regards to vehicle throttle issues and consumer seeks reimbursement. The consumer stated the throttle response on the vehicle was horrible. The consumer stated there was an abnormal hesitation. The dealer claimed it had to with the new 1.6 no boost engine and the delayed response of the turbo. However, there was no fix for it. Also, the consumer noticed the clock would reset for not reason and the preset radio stations would randomly go blank. The dealer re-loaded the software for the display to fix the issue. However, a week later the radio went completely dead for one day, but came back on the next day. Also, the gas mileage was no where near where Ford indicated it should be ( 23 mpg city, 26 mpg combo, 33 mpg highway).

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #9

Jul 112012


  • 1,000 miles
The myfordtouch system with navigation is unsafe. Due to continuous software and hardware errors, the large video screen is distracting to the driver. Phone does not sync from time to time, navigation does not acquire gps signal or vehicle position is incorrect. Many problems with bluetooth and usb integration, too many to list here. When glitches occur, the screen often goes completely blank, showing nothing at all. I have had my Escape in for service three times for these problems. My spouse complains when she rides in the car that I am distracted by continuous errors of the mft display. Problems with mft system have also been noted by consumer reports. I will take advantage of the lemon law to correct this unsafe situation with my vehicle.

- Chesapeake, VA, USA

problem #8

Nov 302012

Escape 4-cyl

  • 100 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that an unknown warning light illuminated while driving 50 mph. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the failure could not be replicated. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified and the contact was awaiting a return call. The failure mileage was 100. Updated 01/30/13 the consumer stated there was a never notice sent and received. 1/31/2013

- Cumberland, RI, USA

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