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 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.

The 2013 is the first model year of the Escape's 3rd generation and proves once again that you want to avoid the first model year when at all possible.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 22
Injuries / Deaths:
5 / 0
Average Mileage:
25,791 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 engine problems

engine problem

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2013 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 9 of 13)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #85

Apr 202014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 13,400 miles


When I brake to slow down the car for a red-light stop the engine shut down before the car was completely stopped. This happened 3 times in the 4/20 week. Ford service couldn't find what's wrong because they couldn't "reproduce" the problem. Another safety issue is the passenger airbag. The airbag-off warning sign always lit up randomly when my son sits in that seat. My son is slightly over 100 lbs. Ford people said he has to sit straight up, which I think is ridiculous and outrageous.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #84

Mar 242014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 9,000 miles
One day when I started my car it came up with the error message "engine fault, service vehicle now!". I got a fright, restarted the car and the error message was gone and I could drive it home. The next day the message came up again, I tried to drive it and it was clunky and wouldn't go past first gear. I pulled over and restarted the car and it worked fine again. It happened again the following day so I took it into the service center. The service center was unable to recreate the problem and could not find anything wrong in the car. They looked into the car computer's logs and couldn't find anything there either. Since then the problem has happened 9-10 times and it is unsafe for me and my family to drive when the car is reporting the error. We cannot drive it while the error is on and the dealership say they cannot fix it unless the error is showing.

- Lenexa, KS, USA

problem #83

Feb 162014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 13,000 miles
Engine caught fire due to a Ford recall notice, burning vehicle. Vehicle is a total loss. Ford did not have the replacement parts available to repair the vehicle at the time of loss. As of this date (April 26) Ford has not accepted responsibility for this fire loss.

- Fairhope, AL, USA

problem #82

Jan 152014


  • 10,000 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that the check engine warning light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where the failure was unable to be repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 10,000 and the current mileage was 18,000. The VIN was not available.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #81

Mar 012013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 900 miles
I bought the car brand new Nov. 2012 and it had 200 miles on it. From about Mar/April 2013 I have taken the car in 6 times for the same problem over the past year and a half that they can not seem to fix. When I start the car or its already running and I start to drive the "engine fault, service now" comes up and the car goes into limp mode until its shut off and re-started again, at which point its a 50/50 chance of working right. This has happened in the driveway when I first start the car as well as when im driving it will go into limp mode and not get above first gear and it sputters to a stop. I have had my engine sensors changed twice because they kept blowing out. The problem still continues.

- Westland, MI, USA

problem #80

Nov 182013


  • miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph, small flames emitted from the engine compartment. The vehicle was moved to the shoulder and was shut down. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who repaired the vehicle. The contact mentioned that the failure continued after the repair. The contact was unsure of the exact repairs. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure and informed the contact that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number 13V583000 (engine). The failure mileage was not available.

- Wyntote, PA, USA

problem #79

Feb 072014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 18,000 miles


I was ~350 miles from home in N. Minnesota on 2/7/2013 and was accelerating from ~30 mph to 55 mph when the vehicle started to shake violently and loose power. A default message appeared on driver's information display followed by an ok message. The vehicle continued to shake and would not accelerate past ~5mph. I pulled into a local business parking lot and turned off the engine. I then added a bottle of gas line antifreeze believing there was a fuel problem since the outdoor temperature was extremely cold (-20 F to ?? 30F) and I had refuel ~75 miles before. After the addition of a bottle of fuel line antifreeze I immediately started the engine. I proceeded to the local Ford dealer to have the vehicle checked out. The technician could not find an error code. The vehicle performed normally until the problem reappeared March 30th at ~ 19,500 miles (again in N. mn). A default message re-appeared on driver's information display followed by an ok message. After pulling over on the shoulder of the road, I shut off the engine and immediately restarted it. The engine has performed as normal since the second incident. After return to my home I reported the problem to the local Ford dealership. The dealer maintenance department consulted with Ford Motor Company for a service recommendation. The vehicle was serviced on 3/9/2014 per Ford's recommendation at ~ 20,000. Again there was no error message stored on the vehicles computer.

- Charles City, IA, USA

problem #78

Aug 072013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 16,500 miles
My 2013 Ford Escape has had a issue of stalling while at intersections or driving at slow speeds the radio and ac is still working but the engine is dead if you are not paying attention you could roll out into and interception and you car be dead and you have to put it in park to restart it this has happened many times to my wife she has almost got hit multiple times with the last one being a semi truck everytime I take it to for they tell me they cant find in fault codes they don't know what to fix so they just tell me to go with it I have filed an official complaint with Ford Corp. Office still with no results basically what they are saying is if they cant find a code they cant fix anything so am I just supposed to let my wife drive a unsafe car and get her and my son killed and if you look online there has been thousands of people saying the same complaint and Ford telling them the same thing so something is wrong we need help.

- Wichita, KS, USA

problem #77

Jul 292013


  • miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that he attempted to have the vehicle repaired under NHTSA campaign number: 13V583000 (engine) but was made aware that the parts were not available. The contact stated that the manufacturer had exceeded a reasonable amount of time for the recall repairs.

- Branford, CT, USA

problem #76

Jan 202014


  • miles
Vehicle stalls for no reason when coming to a stop. Vehicle idles rough and stalls. Service engine now warning comes on. NHTSA needs to address this problem now. Look at all the other complaints about this same vehicle on the web sit. Someone is gong to get killed or injured because Ford can not or will not address the problem.

- Troutman, NC, USA

problem #75

Mar 182014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 8,449 miles


While driving the vehicle to the dealer to be inspected under NHTSA recall 13V583 when the engine reached 3000 RPM's huge volumes of blue smoke came out of exhaust system. While at the dealer the dealer performed the recall inspection and related tests, which resulted in replacement of the water pump and in the dealers words "all coolant system and related modifications per extensive recall" Ford recall 13S12C and 13S12D. The dealer would not confirm that the recall had been repaired or eliminated for this vehicle after these repairs were completed. Most of the parts listed to address the recall make sense except the replacement of the oil dipstick. The dealer also addressed the blue smoke issue and in the dealers words "found excessive oil in the turbo and excessive play in the turbine wheel". this resulted in the replacement of the turbo. Please note that this engine is the troubled 2013 1.6 liter ecoboost engine. The parts that failed and were replaced should not have failed on an engine with only 8449 miles on it. The vehicle was in the shop from March 18th until April 1st to get repaired. Also understand that we do not have an issue with the dealer, we feel they have done what they can to resolve these defects in this engine. We are concerned that NHTSA has not done enough to get this troubled engine off the streets and we are also concerned that there still has not been full disclosure from Ford of what is wrong with this engine that is causing multiple recalls.

- Beloit, WI, USA

problem #74

Aug 242013


  • 5,000 miles
I was driving slowly in a parking lot, coasting, when the engine died. I was able to restart it after putting it into park. The issue has happened twice more, once on the highway, once on a city street. Both times happened when the car was coasting. I was lucky to have been able to pull over safely and restart the car. Separately, I have experienced the rough engine start so many others on this website have complained about. The sequence is you turn on the engine, it idles roughly, can't accelerate away from the curb, and jerks forward when you try. You have to shut down the engine, let it calm itself down and restart. Sometimes it's fine, sometimes you have to repeat. I mentioned it when we took it in for its first service, but Ford didn't find anything wrong. I'm shocked that neither Ford nor the government has done anything, despite dozens of complaints of exactly the same issue. That is not a statistical fluke, it is defective vehicle and I hope neither Ford nor this Agency screw up again the way GM and this Agency did with the ignition issue.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #73

Mar 272014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 15,500 miles
When I tried again to start up my car today, the powertrain was producing smoke. Ford agreed to buyback my car in mid December 2013 but they have still not been following through on their written contract. I have contacted Ford's rav dept along with emailing Ford's tier1 customer support everytime my car has caught on fire. I have also let the dealer know of my issues. I have tweeted to @Ford, @fordservice, @fordescape about my car. They are aware my car's overheating and transmission issues. No one from Ford has offered to put me in a loaner car while they try to reissue my 'lost' buyback check. They'd rather me drive around a car that catches on fire. I suspect they are trying to hit a quarterly goal and are stalling to Q2. I paid cash for my car so I'm sure my buyback is impacting their budgeting. The smoke from the powertrain triggered my asthma.

- Palo Alto, CA, USA

problem #72

Mar 232014


  • 33,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph, smoke was seen coming from under the hood. The contact exited the vehicle and moments later, flames had engulfed the vehicle. The fire department was called to the scene and extinguished the fire. The vehicle was destroyed during the incident and a police report was filed at the scene. The vehicle was not diagnosed to determine the cause of the fire. The manufacturer was notified but no solution was offered. The failure mileage was 33,000.

- Mount Vernon, NY, USA

problem #71

Feb 272014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 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 #70

Mar 202014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 15,000 miles
When I tried to start up my car today, the powertrain was producing smoke. Ford agreed to buyback my car in mid December 2013 but they have not been following through on their written contract. I have contacted Ford's rav dept, I have tweeted to @Ford, @fordservice, @fordescape about my car's issues yet they have not contacted me back about where my repurchase check is at or try to get me a replacement vehicle while this process is occurring. They are aware my car's overheating and transmission issues.

- Palo Alto, CA, USA

problem #69

Mar 152014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 15,000 miles
My automatic transmission is not shifting when I drive uphill and it's causing the engine to rev at redline. When I was driving back from la over the weekend, the car struggled the entire drive. Something was burning under the hood. The engine was also overheating while driving uphill. Ford agreed to buyback this death trap in mid Dec 2013 but they have been stalling the entire process. Apparently my check is missing. I don't want to be in this car when either it burst into flames, the transmission or engine seizes.

- Palo Alto, CA, USA

problem #68

Feb 062014


  • 14,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while idling at a stop light, the vehicle began to overheat as the check engine light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection where they stated that the coolant hose assembly needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired but the check engine light illuminated again. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer where they stated that there was coolant in cylinder 4 and the engine needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 14,000.

- Toms River, NJ, USA

problem #67

Nov 192012

Escape 4-cyl

  • miles
I purchased this car brand new January 4,2013 at tom denchel Ford prosser, Washington. All recalls have been very serious - engine will catch fire. I don't feel safe driving this car. I believe Ford should have to recall every one of these 2013 Ford Escape's. the engine has a huge potential of catching on fire. The first recall I believe was the "fuel pump/filter was incorrectly installed" and would cause an engine fire. It seems this car was incorrectly put together. These cars should be taken off the road before consumers lose their lives. I don't feel safe driving this pos vehicle. It just seems there is one recall after another. If there is a consumer class action lawsuit pertaining to this vehicle I would like to know of it so I can get on the list.

- Yakima, WA, USA

problem #66

Feb 242014


  • 1,500 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact received NHTSA campaign number: 12V551000 (engine and engine cooling) and stated that the recall had surpassed a reasonable time for repair. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer to be diagnosed, and was advise that the part was not available for repair. The manufacturer was contacted and could not advise when the part would become available. The contact also mentioned that while driving 70 mph, coolant began leaking and caused the engine to seize. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 1,500. The VIN was not available.

- Alpine, CA, USA

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