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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
9 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
50,302 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.

2011 Ford F-150 brakes problems

brakes problem

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2011 Ford F-150 Owner Comments (Page 3 of 6)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #62

Oct 012014


  • 32,000 miles


At roughly 32000 miles, in October of 2014 I experienced a failure of the electric brake vacuum assist. The symptoms were that the pump constantly ran and could audibly be heard where it was not previously constantly running. As soon as I noticed a change I reported the issue to johnson Ford in pittsfield MA.. the pump was replaced in October of 2014 under warranty. No recall or campaign has been implemented for this condition but numerous reports by Ford owners have been made regarding the same condition. I believed the audible noise I was hearing was a steering component because I was simultaneously having an issue with "notchy" steering. While negotiating a long, gradual turn my steering would lock while turning left. The wheel would lock when the top of the steering wheel was in the area of the 10 O'clock position. No crash occurred but the condition was very unsafe. The vehicle had to be driven erratically to remedy the condition. A hard yank on the wheel was necessary to forcibly increase steering input. The steering components were also replaced in October of 2014 by johnson Ford under warranty. No recall or campaign has been implemented for this condition but numerous reports have been made regarding the same condition. The electric vacuum assist replaced in October of 2014, nine months ago was the same part with no updates as the one that failed. I again hear the vacuum assist motor running almost constant as it was when replaced. The truck is no longer under warranty. I have only had this vacuum assist for nine months. I spoke with Ford customer service. No warranty is available as I have driven the truck in excess of 12,000 miles (12,200 miles at the time I reported the problem). The customer service employee offered no service other than to bring it to Ford at my expense for repairs, $130 diagnosis, $580 pump, $200 labor.

- Windsor, MA, USA

problem #61

May 012015


  • 42,000 miles
In May 2015 my 2011 Ford F150 3.5L ecoboost began making a buzzing noise in the front left fender well under the hood. From that time forward the truck makes the noise upon start-up. Once the vehicle runs for a while the noise seems to fade away but returns upon restart. A technician tried to diagnose the noise at a local repair shop but to no avail. The noise has gotten worse which prompted me to take the truck back to the repair shop to diagnose again. This time I did some research on the matter and noticed that there was some concern about the vacuum pump in some of these model trucks. Upon picking up my truck the technician informed me that he thought it was the vacuum pump and that I should take my truck to the dealership to have them diagnose the problem and that the part is only available through Ford at this time. I made and appointment with the Ford dealership with the service manager about the noise. He was familiar with the problem and said that 9/10 times the vacuum pump is the problem. He explained that Ford had switched vendors for the part and redesigned the pump in newer models and issued a (tsb) regarding the pump. Since my truck was just outside the warranty period he said I would have to pay for the repair, which was quoted at more than $900. The service manager told me that the part was on back order until mid August 2015 and that I should schedule to have the repair completed then. I asked if there was a safety hazard associated with continued driving and he said, "no, the only thing that could happen is you could lose your brakes or possibly 4 wheel drive, but you'll notice that the brakes are heavy if its going out completely." I feel that Ford should be responsible to replace the defective part that they acknowledge as a problem and have redesigned, and which can cause brake or 4 wheel drive failure putting myself and my passengers at risk.

- Morgantown, WV, USA

problem #60

Jul 072013


  • 29,212 miles
Poor braking in the morning at 29,212 miles. Ford replaced brake vacuum pump assembly at no charge (under warranty). Same problem at 50,198 miles. No longer under warranty and I was charged $319.66 for the same part. I feel there is a problem with this assembly and it's a safety issue.

- Wales, MI, USA

problem #59

Jun 252014


  • 35,000 miles


Around June of 2014, I noted grinding noise coming from the front wheels. I took it to a repair facility and had it inspected. The front outer brake pads on both wheels showed fairly normal wear with about 3/8"-1/2" of pad remaining on each pad. The inboard pad on both wheels were worn down to bare metal and almost seized into the inboard side of both rotors. I had the facility replace both front rotors and pads, but the service tech had to clean and lube both calipers as neither was freely sliding. I notified the dealer and was told this was normal wear, but also told the caliper pins have to be lubricated on a regular basis to prevent this from happening again. I've checked the Ford maintenance schedule and nowhere do they recommend having to lubricate the caliper pins on a regular schedule. My concern is this will occur again as I have noted a service bulletin on your website regarding binding calipers, although the selling dealer passes this off as a non-issue for the brakes and part of normal wear. I've talked to Ford customer support, but they didn't seem to concerned about the problem.

- Dearbon Heights, MI, USA

problem #58

Jul 212015


  • 45,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford F-150. While driving at approximately 5 mph and then depressing the brake pedal, there was an abnormal sound emitting from the vehicle. In addition, the contact stated that the brake pedal failed to respond without. The vehicle was taken to a dealer but was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 45,000.

- Statesboro, GA, USA

problem #57

Jul 162015


  • 130,000 miles
The brake pedal did not depress as it should. Instead it was impossibly hard and had no braking force at all. The dealership inspected the problem and diagnosed a failing vacuum pump. There is no indicator light to notify the vehicle occupant of a problem and this is a severe safety hazard just waiting for injury/death to occur.

- Beavercreek, OH, USA

problem #56

Jul 132015


  • 80,000 miles


F-150 with ecoboost 3.5L gdti engine. Electric vacuum pump that supports the brake booster stopped functioning. Brake pedal feel was hard and vehicle was difficult to stop at times. There were no signs or indicators of the malfunction, other than the hard pedal feel which came on slowly and therefore difficult to notice until vehicle was difficult to stop.

- Manassas, VA, USA

problem #55

Apr 012015


  • 65,000 miles
Started hearing a wining pump noise from behind the driver-side headlight. Days later I was parked just off the road on a slope, started the truck and it rolled down the slope right into the street. The brake pedal felt soft and non-responsive. There was also a chattering noise made. I pumped the brakes a few times and it worked normally again. I stopped and pulled forward to get out of traffic. The same sequence of malfunctions has happened several more times since the first incident. I have ordered a new vacuum pump to fix the problem.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #54

Jul 132015


  • 59,000 miles
Brakes fail after start up for a minute of two...(vacumm pump failure?)

- Prior Lake, MN, USA

problem #53

Apr 292015


  • 43,459 miles
My brakes made a growling sound from the front left side behind the headlight. As time went on it got louder and the brakes were harder to apply in order to stop the vehicle. I took my truck into the local Ford dealer and they replaced the vacuum pump. They charged me $597.40 for this repair that I feel should have been covered by Ford. The dealer told me that they had this problem with numerous other trucks. I feel that this should have had a recall!

- Cortland, NY, USA

problem #52

Jul 082015


  • 116,073 miles


I was driving the truck home from work (not experiencing any issues). I began to cross the ship channel bridge in houston, tx when my low brake fluid light came on. After I crested the top of the bridge I tested the brakes to make sure they were working properly (and they were). I decided to continue driving to the closest auto parts store to see why the light came on an to top off the fluid. When I went to exit the freeway (about 3 miles from when the light came on) I pressed the brake pedal and it went all the way to the firewall (I had lost all breaking power). I immediately pressed the emergency brake and downshifted the transmission to help me get the truck slowed down. I was able to make it to the shoulder without incident. I then had the truck towed to the dealer where they determined then cause of the brake failure was due to a rupture of the seal in the master cylinder. I had the brake booster and master cylinder replaced ($700) and they ensured me the problem was resolved.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #51

Jul 232014

F-150 4WD 6-cyl

  • 74,000 miles
Vehicle upon start has had hard or no brakes. Vehicle is difficult to stop or control at low speeds upon starting vehicle. Been told by dealer it is faulty vacuum assist pump. Parts not available and told no recall/fix is available to consumer without paying 750+ dollars. Happens routinely. Occurs almost daily. Been going on for almost one year. Worried about pulling out of my garage and have resorted to parking on street to ensure control of vehicle upon starting.

- Milan, MI, USA

problem #50

Jul 012015


  • 29,150 miles
Started truck, put in drive went 25 feet applied brakes, truck did not want to stop. Peddle was hard as a rock and would not go down. I let up on the peddle and applied again, this time it worked a little. Did it one more time and it worked fine.

- Townsend, DE, USA

problem #49

Dec 042014


  • 60,081 miles
Going up highway @ 55mph. Pulled around a vehicle to pass. Once, I was in the oncoming traffic the engine suddenly lost power, chugged, and was stumbling over itself. I then got back behind the vehicle I was passing. The 4 passengers and I were all quiet and then freaked out. After a while we pulled out and accelerated to go up road again, truck dogged out. We had no clue what was happening, but everyone was freaked out. We called birthday party destination to tell them we have vehicle trouble and can't make it. Drove it down hill all the while worried the engine was going to blow. Drove it directly to dealership who stated they had no clue and did not want us to leave it there. Said set up appt. 7-10 days out. Parked it until appt. Then they replaced all spark plugs. We also have had troubles with the braking. Where it suddenly takes extra effort and requires the driver to press hard on the brakes to get it to slow down. When we've driven it to Ford for repair they throw their hands up, act frustrated, like they do not have any clue as to what the problems are. We were hesitant to renew our state tags as it sits parked most of the time, since it chugged on level surface with no rain present, and the mechanics light came on. We feel scared driving it and it has remained parked for 3+ weeks. This is our newest vehicle, which looks new and yet we can't drive it. We're not made out of money, and can not easily replace this truck. We want Ford to fix the engine and the brakes, and not act like they have no idea about these problems. Ford wants us to take the loss on the vehicle value or continue driving it until something bad happens. They want nothing in writing. And, we do not want to sell the vehicle to a stranger. We'd allow you to inspect our vehicle....and drive it for a test drive. Would you want to be driving this vehicle with your young children as passengers?

- Littleton, CO, USA

problem #48

Aug 132013


  • 14,000 miles
Electric vacuum pump went bad resulting in no brakes upon start up. Pedal became rock solid with no stopping power at all. Exactly 14000 miles after the first pump went bad, the exact same symptoms took place. Second one " out of warranty" because it was over 3 years old with only 28,000 miles. Ford "good willed" the repair.

- Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #47

Jun 272015


  • 68,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford F-150. While driving 50 mph, the brakes failed to engage and failed to stop the vehicle. The vehicle was merged to side of the road. The vehicle did not display any warning lights. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, where it was diagnosed that the brake vacuum needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. However, the failure recurred. The contact stated that the part has been replaced twice on the vehicle. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 68,000. The VIN was not provided.

- Mechanicsburg, PA, USA

problem #46

Apr 092015


  • 15,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford F-150. While attempting to engage the brakes, the brakes failed to stop the vehicle. The contact mentioned that the brakes resumed normal function only after shutting the ignition off and restarting the vehicle. The dealer diagnosed that the power brake vacuum booster malfunctioned and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 15,000.

- Parma, OH, USA

problem #45

Mar 022012


  • 6,690 miles
I was backing up after a cold start and the brakes failed. I took it in for a repair and they tested the vehicle and found the problem. It was a blown fuse and bad vacuum pump. The fuse and pump were replaced. This happened again on 3/29/12 and the pump was found to be defective and replaced a second time all under warranty. This occurred a third time on 6/13/15 and the vacuum pump was found to be defective again and replaced at a cost $200 in labor. The dealership provided the parts as good will due to my complaints. On 6/1715 the vehicles brake again stop working. This time they reported the fuse had blown for some reason and blamed it on the strain from the old vacuum pump. Note: The fuse also blew back in 2012 when I first had the problem. I have little to no faith that my brakes will work on a cold start every time I start my car. I just saw a twitter feed that this was being looked into so I decided to enter my information.

- Fairport, NY, USA

problem #44

Jun 272015


  • 66,350 miles
Vehicle service brake lost power assist accompanied by loud noise underhood possible electric brake assist fault. Repair facility unable to duplicate problem at this time.

- Oregon, OH, USA

problem #43

May 142013


  • 57,390 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Ford F-150. The contact stated that the brakes failed to respond without warning. The contact turned off and restarted the vehicle. The brake pedal responded after the contact reset the computer, but the failure recurred. The vehicle was not included in NHTSA action number: PE15026 (service brakes, electrical system, service brakes, hydraulic). While traveling approximately 45 mph, the contact pumped the brakes and the brake pedal extended to the floorboard. The contact crashed into the preceding vehicle as well as the guardrail on the passenger side. The driver sustained minor abrasions that did not require medical attention. A police report was filed. The vehicle was towed to a collision center and the body damage was repaired. The vehicle was towed to an authorized dealer where it was diagnosed that the brake pump assembly vacuum needed to be replaced. The pump was locked up and blew out fuses, which indicated a malfunction or potential defect with the component. The vehicle was repaired by the dealer. The approximate failure mileage was 57,390.

- East Berlin , PA, USA

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