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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
74,695 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 Freestar transmission problems

transmission problem

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2005 Ford Freestar Owner Comments (Page 14 of 19)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #116

Nov 252009


  • 68,000 miles


Driving on I-10 in the Florida panhandle, my 2005 Ford Freestar van suddenly (and without any warning) lost forward power. The engine was running but there was no trust. I had the car towed to a nearby service station and was told that the transmission had to be replaced. I did some research and it appears that my situation is very similar the numerous complaints filed about the lost torque in this particular model year car. My car had only 68,000 miles on it.

- Plant City, FL, USA

problem #115

Dec 062009


  • 75,000 miles
Just got home from driving the kids from town and the transmission quit on the 2005 Freestar van. I am trying to get into the shop. I considered this a near miss.

- Bittern Lake, 00, USA

problem #114

Dec 042009


  • 53,436 miles
We own a 2005 Ford Freestar with 53,000 miles on it this morning, Saturday, December 5th I went to start the car and it made a horrible screeching noise. I sat in the driveway for about 5 minutes to see if it would go away as the engine warmed up and while it became softer the screech was still there. Tried to put it in reverse and slowly rolled down my drive way but was unable to ever engage the gears and get it back into drive. After a couple minutes of being frustrated and rolling farther down my drive way I put it in park and had my husband help me push the van back into our driveway. Being a Saturday, we can't get a hold of any of our local shops but looking online we were able to find hundreds of people with the same issue and would like someone to look into it. My car is 4 years old and has 53K on it, it shouldn't be having issues like this yet.

- Richland, WA, USA

problem #113

Dec 022009


  • 119,950 miles


On wed, Dec 2, 2009, my wife was driving our 2005 Ford Freestar during rush hour. She turned a corner, onto a busy blvd, and continued to go up the hill, suddenly the car acted as if it had been shifted into neutral. There was no prior vibration, noise, stall, stutter, smell, engine light or other occurrence to alert us that the vehicle had any issues at all. The engine revved and the car lost all acceleration, mid-hill, in very busy traffic. She was able to Dodge traffic and coast to a shoulder. If this had happened 30-60 seconds earlier, she would have been T-boned by oncoming traffic as she turned onto the blvd. After reading the online forums and NHTSA site, I am shocked to learn that the 2004/2005 Freestars are known for their transmissions going out with no prior symptoms or notice of any kind. I am equally shocked to learn that Ford knows about this, and the NHTSA is supposedly investigating the many many complaints of same issue, and yet neither Ford nor the NHTSA have chosen to notify current owners of the impending danger. A recall is certainly in order. And at the very least, all current Ford 2004/2005 Freestar owners should be made aware of this danger. The quote we received today, for a refurbished transmission, was $2,800. This is a huge problem for our family in a horrible economy where our household income has dropped dramatically and it's 3 weeks till christmas. Thank you Ford and NHTSA for leaving customers and citizens in the dark, and in danger!

- Overland Park, KS, USA

problem #112

Nov 192009


  • 63,457 miles
December 2008, felt the transmission slip while driving in snow, had mechanic look at the van, couldn't reproduce the problem. Vehicle drives fine until 11-19-09 driving up a hill, speed limit 45, around a corner, 2005 Ford Freestar with 63457 miles, transmission suddenly goes into neutral. Pull over, won't go into any gear, aaa towed the van to a transmission shop. Shop re-built transmission, $2557.37. Basal's transmissions, jim basal 860 633 9111 not sure if part is available. He indicated that the problem was in the torque converter.

- Hebron, CT, USA

problem #111

Nov 212009


  • 84,000 miles
While exiting the pearlridge shopping mall parking garage in pearl city, Hawaii, my van completely lost power. As I drifted to the stop light I tried to shift into another gear to see if I possibly had some other gear to go into so that I may pull out of traffic. After trying for a few seconds I realized that I could not move the van and had to get out and push. I had to attempt to move the van while traffic was passing on both sides of me. Luckily, a motorist stopped and he and another guy assisted me in getting my vehicle back to the parking structure safely. With a vehicle just quitting in the middle of a busy road like this one I was at risk of being rear ended which would have lead to a sever accident that would have involved myself, my aunt and my two young daughters along with the occupants of the striking car. I was also at risk while trying to clear the vehicle from the roadway before an accident could possibly occur. I bought the van used in 2007 and received a full transmission service before I took the vehicle home. This was done at 46000 miles and now that I am at 84K this major problem has occurred. I believe I am supposed to have the transmission serviced every 50K miles so I am still good with the fluid. I took it to the Ford dealer and I was informed that it would cost me in the neighborhood of $4700 to get the vehicle repaired by using a remanufactured transmission which was possibly fixed from having the same problem as I have. With all of the posted complaints from people who has and are still having the same problem as I am, I find it hard just to sit back and shell out this amount of money when it seems to be a much larger problem than just that of one van.

- Kailua, HI, USA

problem #110

Nov 222009


  • 50,000 miles


Transmission suddenly failed when attempted to leave driveway in the morning. Car: 2005 Ford Freestar. There is no drive no reverse gear nothing.

- Montreal, Quebec, 00, USA

problem #109

Nov 202009


  • 64,000 miles
Transmission failed to go into gear while driving.

- Boca Raton, FL, USA

problem #108

Nov 192009


  • 61,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. While driving 45 mph all of the gears in the transmission failed. She had to coast to the side of the road-way. The vehicle has been towed to her home. The vehicle has not been inspected, nor has any repairs been made. The failure and current mileages were 61,000.

- Homosassa, FL, USA

problem #107

Nov 132009


  • 47,000 miles
I purchased a 2005 Freestar with 37,000 miles on it in April of 09. Within the first 1,000 miles the transmission sensors had to be replaced. November 13th, yes Friday the 13th, the torque converter broke on the transmission with 47,000 miles on it. I was on the 290 expressway during rush hour when this happened. I purchased the vehicle so I could commute back and forth to work and cart my granchildren around. Does someone have to die before Ford is held accountable"?????" I had to borrow money( 8,000 dollars) and now I have to pay for a new torque converter for the transmission!!!! Ford should be ashamed for putting a product like that on the market. Had I looked into reports before I purchased the vehicle I would have never considered buying one. I have purchased Ford vehicles for the past 25 years, but no more..please help us get a recall on these vehicles before someone gets hurt.

- Cheektowaga, NY, USA

problem #106

Nov 062009


  • 68,000 miles


Failure of the transmission created a sudden and unexpected loss of motive power. The shaft splines failed suddenly and without warning, resulting in a sudden loss of vehicle propulsion due to the engine power becoming disconnected from the drivetrain.

- Avon Lake, OH, USA

problem #105

Nov 052009


  • 102,000 miles
I own a 2005 Ford Windstar minivan my wife was on her way home from work when the van stopped going and cost to a stop seems the transmission went out and would not engage no matter what and we had went to the Ford dealer a month prior to the extended warranty had expired with the van making odd sounds in the transmission they claimed to have not found any problem.

- Ripley, TN, USA

problem #104

Oct 132009


  • 52,000 miles
2005 Ford Freestar 52,000 miles, sudden loss of transmission power after stop at intersection kids in this so called family van with hundreds of complaints. Leaving parents w/ kids stranded in near accidents, what are you waiting for"?? a death so you can initiate recall???", Ford needs to be held accountable for these lemon vehicles people have purchased w/ their hard earned cash!

- Maple Valley , WA, USA

problem #103

Oct 192009


  • 63,000 miles
I was stopped on a busy road waiting to make a left hand turn. When the road cleared I put my foot on the gas and the engine revved but moved only a bit putting me out into the oncoming lane. With traffic starting to bear down on me I put the shifter into D3 gear and the van moved and I was able to return the short distance to home. In the driveway I tried putting the van in drive again and it moved a little but at high revs. There was no engine light and absolutely no symptoms leading up to this. I just put brand new tires on the van last month. This is my family van and in fact one of my children was sitting on the passenger side at the time. This sudden, no symptom failure of the transmission was very scary. I am having a remanufactured transmission installed. It comes with a 6 yr 100K warranty. Although the larger warranty is comforting this type of failure could result in some very terrible accidents. This one almost did.

- Colchester, NN, USA

problem #102

Jul 152008


  • 70,000 miles
My Ford Freestar had the transmission out for torque converter failure. Driving van and suddenly lost power like it was in neutral. It was repaired then about 3-5 months later the van started to run rough and die transmission was shifting crazy had water in the PCM. The dealership repaired van under Ford extended warranty van is very unreliable and I don't take it far from home but I still have to pay for a very poorly engineered car.

- Kings Mtn, NC, USA

problem #101

Oct 102009


  • 49,280 miles
2005 Ford Freestar, with 49,000 miles, suddenly loss transmission power while driving. After safely pulling over to the side of road (with kids in car), could not engage the transmission in any gear (drive, reverse, 1, 2). No axel or transmission noise was observed when shifting into any of the gears.

- Atco, NJ, USA

problem #100

Sep 302009


  • 52,000 miles
I was driving at 10:30pm preparing to enter the interstate when the engine revved and the motion of the car going forward began to stop. There was a sudden and complete loss of power to the wheels. Being on the inside lane of a 4 lane street, there was no way to make it to the rt lane or shoulder. The street was very busy and several times we were almost hit by screeching cars. We called 911 and got police help. Upon calling the Ford dealership I was told it was the torque converter and it would be a minimum of $3,500 to fix even though my van only has 52,000 miles on it. I am disabled and a single parent. I thank god my 2 young children were not with me.

- Oklahoma City , OK, USA

problem #99

Oct 072009


  • 88,500 miles
Vehicle has 88K miles and has run just fine until today. This morning I was driving in to work, stopped for a light, when light changed I pressed the accelerator, the engine responded but I didn't move. No warning, no lights came on, no movement in any gear selection, only "park" works. As a teenager I 100% disassembled and rebuilt several engines so I know a little something beyond which end of the wrench to hold. This was sudden and unexpected! my wife has E-mailed me several blogs on this matter and it seems quite prevalent. My experience exactly matches that on several others and that is uncanny in my opinion. The blogs claim the torque converter or the torque converter output shaft; they also claim the transmission is for the Taurus which is about 1000 pounds lighter, thus the failure. I've had the vehicle towed to my mechanic, but after reading the blogs I don't need him to tell me what is wrong. If this happens as others have attested then this is a very serious safety issue. It is too late for a recall to help me - I'm trading the vehicle this weekend! I was going to West Texas this weekend - thank god it happened in san antonio, otherwise I could be broken-down in a real 'middle of no where'. by the way, the vehicle has relatively easy miles even though I live in a metro area. Virtually all the miles are on this vehicle are high speed and constant as most is on the interstate or like roadways; very little has been slow stop and go city street type traffic; no steep grades to climb either.

- Fair Oaks Ranch, TX, USA

problem #98

Oct 032009


  • 79,200 miles
Transmission failed without warning while driving down a city street. Had to coast to a safe place to park the car until we can get it towed. Dealership is now saying $3200 to replace the apparently defective transmission.

- Victoria, TX, USA

problem #97

Sep 282009


  • 86,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. While driving 35 mph the vehicle stalled without any prior warnings. The transmission was in the process of being repaired at a local facility, at an expense of $2500. The failure and current mileages were 86000.

- Plaino, TX, USA

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