2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid electrical problems: battery dead

Battery Dead

2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid (Page 1 of 3)

This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Ford dealer.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
23,800 miles
Total Complaints:
42 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (24 reports)
  2. replace battery (10 reports)
  3. no solution (2 reports)
  4. replaced electrical cooling pump (2 reports)
  5. make sure hatch is securely closed and lights are off (1 reports)
  6. replace radio (1 reports)
2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid electrical problems

electrical problem

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2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #42

Sep 242018

C-Max Hybrid SEL 2L

  • CVT transmission
  • 52,500 miles


I went through 5 batteries on my CMax and repeatedly took it in (or, twice, had it towed) to the Ford dealer for a replacement. The battery dying was always preceded (a day or two earlier) by the radio dying. Well, after they repeatedly scratched their heads, I suggested they replace the radio. Well, guess what? The radio was the culprit. I have gone an entire year now without battery issues. Apparently the radio was not turning off when the car was turned off and was continually putting a vampire drain on the battery. This occurred even when I manually turned off the radio before turning off the engine.

- Lynn M., Scottsdale, US

problem #41

Jun 262019

C-Max Hybrid SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,015 miles

OK this is the eighth time the battery has died. It has been at the dealership since June 26, 2019 and is still there as of this writing. I tried to take it to my own (non-dealership) auto mechanic and he apologized but told me he "wouldn't touch that car." He said the battery issue is a known problem and makes the car a lemon. He suggested I contact Ford customer car (which we have already done in the past) and complain and that I should take it back to the dealership and try, again, to get them to fix the problem.

I should mention that one of the service advisors we dealt with was very rude to myself and my husband and kept suggesting that we must be the cause of the problem. We now have a very nice SA, but that's not helping to get the car fixed. Just more run-around.

- Margaret B., Collierville, US

problem #40

Jan 202018

C-Max Hybrid SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,971 miles

This was round two of our dead battery issues. More to follow.

- Margaret B., Collierville, US

problem #39

Jul 312018

C-Max Hybrid SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 56,303 miles


This is now the third time we have brought the car to the dealership for the same problem. They claim each time that they have fixed it. NOPE! They replaced the battery but the battery wasn't the problem. More to follow.

- Margaret B., Collierville, US

problem #38

Dec 142018

C-Max Hybrid SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,055 miles

This is now the fourth time the battery was dead and the car taken to the dealership. However the dealership did not list this on the invoice. Instead there was a charge of $101.43 listed as "other." After complaining to the service manager, the charge was removed.

- Margaret B., Collierville, US

problem #37

Jan 032018

C-Max Hybrid SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,036 miles

This was the first of MANY dead battery problems. I will report each and every one of them.

- Margaret B., Collierville, US

problem #36

Jul 282018

C-Max Hybrid SEL 2L

  • CVT transmission
  • 51,000 miles


In retrospect I suppose buying a new model is a mistake. So, aside from about a thousand recalls and getting to know my Ford service adviser WAY TOO WELL, the car has been great when it runs. And therein lies the problem. I miraculously made it 28K miles (2-1/2 years) on the first battery. No complaints there. Since then, I've woken up to a dead battery 3 times. Battery number 2 lasted almost 14K miles just shy of 2 years. Battery number 3 lasted 2600 miles (3 months), and battery number 4 lasted 6000 miles (8 months). Each failure is preceded by several days of no radio.

This last time I even took it right to the Ford dealer and asked them to check my battery. They said it was "fine". The next morning the car was dead. I'm tired of the inconvenience of having my car towed in and the nervous feeling of having an unreliable car. But the worst part is they just put in a new battery and send you on your way. I asked them to check for some sort of electrical drain and they said everything is great. Clearly not. I doubt they even check it.

Now I will never be able to sell this car outright and be honest about its history, so am just stuck with the paltry trade-in value. Will NEVER spend another dollar with Ford. And people wonder why we buy Hondas and Toyotas?

- Lynn M., Scottsdale, US

problem #35

Nov 102017

C-Max Hybrid ES 2.0L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,000 miles

3 days ago, the SYNC with MyFord Touch system went dead - screen worked, but no functionality (couldn't turn on the radio, sensor wipers no longer worked, no backup signal when getting too close to an object). Then, next morning when I was going to take it to the dealer to get that repaired, the batter was dead. Was told the engine battery had a defective cell, so they replaced it.

Worked fine until 3 days ago (2/2/18) when SYNC with MyFord Touch system did the same exact thing (the screen would light up, but no functionality). Woke up this morning to drive it to the dealer for repair, and the car was dead again (no response - couldn't start, screen didn't light up, etc.). When I talked to a Ford rep on Friday, 2/2/18, was told to tell the dealer it needed Field Service Action Number 12M02. Dealer informed me this was due to the SYNC with MyFord Touch System freezing up. Ford rep also informed me on 2/2/18 that my software was version 3.6, current version is 3.10, so it needs to be updated (has to be done by dealer, cant be performed by car owner). When I asked the dealer about this, they said Ford instructs them not to proactively update software unless there is a problem.

There is a DEFINITE problem here! The inconvenience of going back and forth to the dealer and things not being fixed properly the first time around is more than annoying! Will report on this newest failure (2/2/18-2/4/18) in a separate complaint, once "resolved" (if a resolution is even possible, based on all the complaints I've seen in here.

- jl-spirit, Jackson, US

problem #34

Sep 192017

C-Max Hybrid SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,000 miles

I have had this car for about 3 years, it has been a pain since day one. I had the car just go dead too many times to count. When they jump started it, it just kept speeding up- you have no control over the speed at all, had to stop, shut it off then restart. Finally got a hold of a district manager who assured me the problem was fixed by replacing the battery,,,WRONG!!! Now when I try to start it, it takes at least 3 tries, lights flash on dash and flicker like there is a short. Took it to have it put it on a computer to test it at 2 different places, it throws no codes. I am literally afraid of the car at this point. Ford should figure out what is causing all the issues with the batteries on this car or do a total recall. (oh did i mention the warning light that comes on that says pull over safely...yeah this is "a issue as well" it will not speed up no matter what you do. So you pull over and shut it off, restart and it seems ok well for the next 30 minutes or so. I doubt if I ever buy a FORD again after all the bs i have with car and no one at any dealer can fix or even seems interested enough to research....

Update from Sep 20, 2017: if you are having problems PLEASE CALL FORD AT 1800-392-3673, they send reports to natsa and this is what gets recalls !!!!!!!!

- honse, De Soto, US

problem #33

Jul 152015

C-Max Hybrid SE 4-cyl

  • CVT transmission
  • 3,000 miles

We left the car in bright sunlight and closed the (manual) hatch with the lock already engaged with the keyfob. After about 18 hours, we tried to start the car. It would not start at all. I checked the 12 V battery and it was at 3.5 volts. I put the battery on a trickle charger and was able to recover operation. (This had happened twice before earlier in the life of the car under warranty. The Ford techs could not find a cause either time. They replaced the battery once. The time I describe is the third time for us.)

I tried an experiment and locked the car with the hatch open. Then I carefully closed only the first latch. The lights stayed on for the 10 minutes that I watched the car and never went out. After 10 minutes the battery voltage was 11.6 V, so I closed the hatch and ran the engine to recharge the battery. I am pretty sure that if I had left the car that way, it would have been at 3.5 volts again.

Since some very questionable software has left this as a possibility, the only thing you can do is to carefully check the lights in front or back in bright sunlight to make sure they are out after closing the hatch.

- dratcliff, Plano, TX, US

problem #32

Nov 102016

C-Max Hybrid SE 2.0L L4 Electric /Gas

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,500 miles


Vehicle started to not turn on, entire car was dead - no locks, could not open the hatch, nothing. It would do this intermittently but then start. About a week later would not start at all and I had to have the battery jumped by AAA, who said the battery was too new to have this problem- had to drive around an extra hour to recharge the battery. Worked ok for about 4 days. Had it checked at Firestone as all the Ford dealers in town were closed for inventory - go figure. They could not find a problem. Next day it did the same thing. Was working one minute - next, totally not on.

Tried to talk on line w someone from Ford tonight, but she just said go to the dealer.

Now I see that this is a big issue with this vehicle - really disappointing

- reneenc, Durham, NC, US

problem #31

Oct 142016

C-Max Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 38,128 miles

After we had to have the car jump-started last month when its battery went dead, I didn't think anything more about it. Until this afternoon when I went outside and hopped in to run some errands. Car wouldn't start, battery completely dead. This after I had driven it several miles yesterday, being very careful to try and keep its gas mileage up as close to 40 mpg as possible by doing a lot of coasting, careful acceleration, etc. Waited for an hour and a half for Roadside Assistance, and he came and jumped the car and it started. Then we had to drive it for half an hour to make sure the battery is recharged.

At this point, I go online and discover that this is a problem that hundreds of people have with the Ford C-Max. Ford knows about it, and hasn't found a solution. Why does Volkswagen get all the bad press when Ford overstated the mileage on this piece of s**t by about 10 mpg, and allows this problem to go unsolved for years?

- Michael N., Charleston, SC, US

problem #30

May 062014

C-Max Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 22,000 miles

Had this problem since I bought the car. Long story on all they did that didn't fix this intermittent problem, but they recently released this new TSB. Wanted other to know. Covered under warranty. I hope it works, but will have to wait 6 months or so to know for sure. Good luck!

- Russ S., McKinney, TX, US

problem #29

Oct 102015

C-Max Hybrid SEL 2

  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,000 miles

Dead battery, had jump started by AAA and took to dealer who said the problem was this is a hybrid, and when it runs on electrical energy it does not charge the 12volt battery...that battery only charges when it uses the gas motor...so the more efficient your driving, the higher the probability your battery will die.

- Harry H., St. Louis, MO, US

problem #28

Jul 132015

C-Max Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles

I brought this car Dec 29, 2012. It is a 2013 I have had nothing but problems over the last 20 months. Dead battery first one replaced, brand new transmission to which they kept my car for almost two months to fix, I continue to have dead battery issues, many recalls, trunk not working and now the power is draining every where. It kicks straight to gas mode instead of electric, blue tooth not working, dash light was bright even though light switch was off. I completely done with this car. I have written to the Ford corporation and there rep was Ms. Allison was rude and only wanted to focus on the amount of miles that I have place on the car. Again, I have had it!

- johnsonkd47, Fredericksburg, VA, US

problem #27

Feb 052014

C-Max Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,000 miles

I continue to have problems with the battery going dead overnight. The car will start fine for a month or more and then go dead. I've had it to the Ford dealership several times for the same problem but it's never been repaired correctly. As of today it's been at the Gabus Ford dealership for 9 days. I called them yesterday and they still cant find what's draining the battery. When I get it back I'm purchasing a battery backup to jump it so I don't get stranded again. When the car is running it's fine but it's totally unreliable. And I'm a Ford guy!

Update from Jul 23, 2015: Well another two weeks at Gabus Ford dealership and the car still isn't repaired! But, they gave the VIN number to Ford for research. Still no loaner! A total of four weeks in the shop in two months. No stars here!

Update from Sep 2, 2015: Got the car back after five weeks in the shop. They replaced the start up battery! So far the car has started fine for two weeks. SO it took them a total of 7 weeks to diagnose a defective battery.

Update from Nov 3, 2015: So now the car is starting and running but has developed a nasty shake rattle and roll from the front end of the car. Back to the shop it goes. Don't buy one of these! ERRRR

- Dan N., Des Moines, US

problem #26

Jun 102015

C-Max Hybrid 2.0L ATK IVCT Engine

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,000 miles

Customer Satisfaction Program 15B04 - 12v Battery May Discharge overnight, needs replacement.

Dealership replaced battery for the second time in 2 years.

- Joseph M., Minneapolis, MN, US

problem #25

May 132015

C-Max Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,071 miles

Dead/Not charging battery....this sounds like a CONTINUAL problem with the Ford C-Max....The battery in my car has already been replaced once and still does not charge correctly. I believe this is a major problem with the Ford C-Max. I have been told to make sure nothing is left plugged in over night, use of air conditioner could be a problem....when I bought the NEW car, I expected to get a NEW car. Not one that I could not do certain things with and if this was an issue I should have been told of the issues when I bought the car.

I was told they were new cars and the manager "was wanting to move them off the lot" Now I see why. With all the complaints, I think these cars should be looked at as LEMONS....and not to make the customer feel like they are stupid when it comes to knowing what is going on.

I have had other issues with this car as well....two recalls so far and one more coming up in November. The first issue was the phone(s) that I had would not sync to the car....and yes, there were on the list of compatible phones....I had to buy NEW phones. Tried to get the dealership then to trade me out vehicles...same type, just a different one....they would not do it.

I will list all of my issues separately, as stated, but someone needs to start looking at all the problems with the Ford C-Max.

- LilBit A., Indianapolis, IN, US

problem #24

May 252015

C-Max Hybrid

  • CVT transmission
  • 40,000 miles

We have really liked the C-Max, but have also had our share of problems with it. We had our battery randomly die at least 4 times. It's been replaced under warranty, however it is still acting up. Now we are out of warranty. :-(

3 times it happened overnight, once it happened during the day. After charging the battery with a plug in charger (we bought from an auto parts store), the car started and ran fine. No accessories were left on. IMO, It's clearly some problem with their computer system not shutting everything down properly under certain circumstances and continuing to drain the battery even after the car is shut down.

- erik508, Saint Paul, MN, US

problem #23

Apr 262015

C-Max Hybrid

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,000 miles

The battery is contantly going dead on this vehicle. I own two of the CMax Hybrids. The first one had this problem regularly until my husband started driving it to work (50 miles round trip), although with summer here we'll see if that one has the problem more often. The problem started when I bought the vehicle and continued through the first summer, Ford replaces the battery(as if that is going to fix the problem). I did not have the problem much during the winter months. Have come to the conclusion that because I used the heater during the winter the car does not go into EV mode as often so the engine being on seems to help the charging of the 12V battery. I only drive the car about 50 to 80 miles per week. As soon as spring arrived and I did not need the heater on the car drives in EV mode most of the time and the battery is constantly going dead. I took it to Ford dealer and there fix was to put in a new battery. I went to pick up the vehicle and had to leave it as the car was completely dead. I don't recall them telling me when I bought the car that I had to drive it a lot and make sure the engine was running enough to keep the battery charged. That would negate the reason for saving on fuel, especially since the engine really isn't very fuel efficient.

Update from Feb 19, 2016: Battery problems still exist despite being at the Ford dealership for six weeks last summer. They insist it is my auto start, even though I have had this problem from the beginning and did not install the auto start until after eight months. My husbands is still having the same problem. He tested the battery and it showed fully charged and then he heard a click and the battery discharged by half. I don't understand why Ford is not even appearing to try and solve this problem. I hope they fired the engineers that designed this car.

- barkdull, North Pole, AK, US

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