Notes: The 2005 Escape has problems where the engine shuts down while driving. Ford finally issued a September 2014 recall. Time will tell if the recall fix really solves the problem.

However the 2005 Escape also has a defect where the PCM (Power Control Module) fries at around 100k miles. Ford extended the PCM warranty to 80,000 miles, but only after most owners were past the mileage limit. Now owners are on the hook for the average repair cost of over $2,000 (!!)


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
94,833 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 Escape steering problems

steering problem

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2005 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #31

Aug 162016


  • 131,000 miles


I was driving with my daughter in the car came to a stop and the sub frame being rotted collapsed and my tire kinked out.

- Yorktown Heights, NY, USA

problem #30

Jul 162016


  • miles
While driving without warning, the power steering completely fails. Once stopped and the car is restarted, the power steering will work ok until it fails again at an unknown time. The car is nearly always in motion but has failed upon startup while in park. Frequency is random over the last six or more years. The last two times was today. Turning car off and on usually resets the function back to operating.

- Monument, CO, USA

problem #29

Nov 152015


  • 67,200 miles
Drove from Washington state to Utah on family vacation 14nov15. Filled up with gas in boise, I.D. and 1 mile into that drive felt a surge and then slight loss of power driving at 70mph. Then it was fine. When we got into spanish fork, ut. We had a loss of power when we came off the high way and contacted our friend who's dad owns his own mechanic shop K&K auto in spanish fork, ut. He got the codes cleared and said the codes were not making any sense as to the possible loss in power. The vehicle ran real good after getting codes cleared. The next morning we headed out on I15 on our trip to our vacation destination and it did it again as we got on the high way, I use an injector cleaner in case that was the problem as my friends dad had suggested. We got to fillmore, ut. And we loss total power and steering control. We coasted off onto an exit ramp there we were about to pass when it happened. Had our vehicle towed to the only mechanic opened at the time on a Saturday afternoon. He said the same thing about the codes. Then he said we had a bad catalack-converter. We had it towed back to our friends dads shop an hour and a half North. The next day he said he thinks it may be the coils but the codes say all of them. So we had him take it to Ford in provo, ut while we rented a car and had some of our vacation, most of it we missed spending days waiting on a word from Ford service after we got in from our couple of days we did get in of our vacation. We thought they were going to do the work while we were gone, but no. Now we are home after paying $730.- for injectors and a new coil. (I thought) they still have our vehicle in the bay getting new catalack converters put on(both) and is an additional $1900.- plus to make it worse they called today and said all the coils have to be replaced. I thought that was done, apparently not, and this is not rare for 2005 Escapes, oh.

- West Richland, WA, USA

problem #28

Aug 292015


  • 116,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Ford Escape. While driving approximately 30 mph, the contact stated that the vehicle was not steering properly and pulled to the right. The front passenger side subframe fractured. The vehicle was towed to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The technician stated that the subframe fractured. The manufacturer was notified. The approximate failure mileage was 116,000.

- Medina, OH, USA

problem #27

Aug 262015


  • 83,000 miles
The sub-frame rusted through causing both front wheels to toe out and also to camber in at the top. The ABS warning light also triggered. The steering now pulls to the left and there is tire squeel even on gradual right hand turns. There is a recall for this exact problem for the Ford Escape model years 2001-2004. It is obvious that this same problem exists for this model year 2005 Ford Escape. I verified that my VIN was not covered in the recall. I then called Ford to see if they would remedy the problem as it was obvious that this was the same problem as in their other recall - they said they couldn't help. This is a low mileage, well maintained vehicle so it should be obvious that the sub-frame is faulty.

- Cockeysville, MD, USA

problem #26

Aug 082015


  • 230,000 miles
Mid day, mild weather in the 70's, power steering went out without warning, almost had an accident as I was in a turn, it's really hard to turn this vehicle. Why is there not a recall for this significant safety issue?

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #25

Jul 312015


  • 120,000 miles


Sub-frame rust problem. There was a recall on 2001 to 2004 Ford Escape for this problem. Ford Motor Company has recalled Escape crossovers from model years 2001-2004 in states that use a lot of road salt. In affected vehicles, part of the car could suffer damage from rust and even lose steering control.

- Ambridge, PA, USA

problem #24

Jun 222015


  • 158,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Escape. While driving at 35 mph, the contact heard an abnormal noise coming from the rear of the vehicle. In addition, the contact stated that the rear of the vehicle failed to stay in position and veered left or right. The engine warning light illuminated intermittently. The contact noticed that there was corrosion around the rear passenger shocks and wheel house area. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 158,000.

- Columbus , OH, USA

problem #23

Jun 162015


  • 105,900 miles
While driving, I noticed that my steering wheel was not aligned. I didn't notice it was like this until I was already driving down the road. When I stopped, I checked my tires and thought that they looked slightly off. It seemed as if the passenger side tire was pointed slightly outward. The car sat in my driveway for the next couple of days and it appeared to have gotten worse. I took my car out for a test drive and noticed that each time I turned the wheel, the tires screeched. I took the car to a shop and after giving it an evaluation, they said that the control rod was rusted and starting to break. After some research online, it looked like there was a recall on 2001-2004 Ford Escapes for the same issue that I was having.

- Plantation, FL, USA

problem #22

Oct 232014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 56,000 miles
I had purchased a used Escape, in very good condition, in Aug 2014. I bought from the original owner, a family member, with only 55K mileage over their 10 years of ownership (they were upgrading). I drove the car an additional 1,500 miles here (to 56K, total) over my first two months of ownership, and the car had passed all its regular annual inspections. Suddenly one night on the road the car's engine began chugging when I attempted to travel beyond 45mph, and a blinking yellow check engine light appeared. Upon restarting that indicator did not come back on, but the engine was still sluggish and so I attempted to coast home at managed speeds (as I was only a mile away) to have a mechanic check it out during business hours. I didn't even make it home. The engine light went on full and I soon lost power completely, with barely enough notice to pull off the 6 lane highway. The sudden power loss seemed very unsafe as I had to steer manually with no power steering nor acceleration. After the car stalled out it would not even restart for a long period of time. I towed it to a mechanic the next day and they read me a long list of error codes that had been identified, all of which went back to the power control module (PCM) failure, apparently, as described in tsb 10-18-10. I have been told by two different mechanics, including my local Ford dealership, that it would cost at least $2,000 to service the PCM and replace all affected spark plugs, coils and cylinders. Despite the very low mileage below the 80K PCM warranty, the vehicle reacted rather sporadically and unpredictably and it created an unsafe condition. I would have liked to have been informed sooner of this known issue. There should have been a recall notice since the PCM is known to cause a hazard. I now see that there are 113 complaints logged at, citing similar PCM and/or engine problems.

- Haddon Township, NJ, USA

problem #21

Mar 192015


  • 98,000 miles


I was driving on the freeway in the fast lane at 60mph and a car cut me short and brake so I applied my brake my wheel had yanked to the left and I tried to gain control of the wheel by pulling it to the right but it yanked again to the left causing me to hit into the median due to the impact my car turned over and dragged across the other 3 lanes and titled back over. Although my car is totaled I sustained minor injury to my neck and left side. Also my airbags did not deploy.

- Cleveland, OH, USA

problem #20

Jan 032015

Escape 6-cyl

  • 114,000 miles
While traveling approximately 35 mph, the rear passenger side shock punctured through a completely rusted out rear wheel well on my 2005 Ford Escape. The car is undrivable and the auto repair/body shop quoted me $3,000 to repair this. I contacted Ford and they stated that only the 2001-2004 models are covered under a recall for this exact same problem. I have researched this problem and have read hundreds of people with the same problem..

- Kenosha, WI, USA

problem #19

Jan 032015

Escape 6-cyl

  • 174,033 miles
The vehicle's rear passenger wheel well rusted out completely. This allowed the rear shock to become dangerously loose and produced a loud banging noise. Had the shock come loose there would have been a substantial loss of steering. Car is now unsafe to drive.

- Oregon, OH, USA

problem #18

Nov 252014

Escape 4WD 6-cyl

  • miles
Severe rust right rear shock tower unsafe to drive.

- Mount Clemens, MI, USA

problem #17

Sep 012014


  • 174,000 miles
Based on local service of my vehicle, I was informed that the power return line must be replaced at the dealership. There is information from Ford corporation that describes a steering noise (clunk and rattle) for all Ford Escapes (2005 models) stated in a document (#tsb 06-17-3) by Ford. Part number to be replaced is 6L8Z-3A713-K is this something that is dangerous and has the company made a decision on recalling the vehicle?

- Blythewood, SC, USA

problem #16

Aug 052014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 104,000 miles
I drive a 2005 Ford Escape in a 'salt belt' state - New York. I was recently made aware per my former mechanic by right rear well / sub frame has completely corroded to where my shock tower hits the inside of my trunk. The replacement is over $1050. I know that the 2001-2004 Ford Escapes were recalled for this same reason. This is highly dangerous to myself and other drivers on the road. It is unacceptable for the 2005's to not be recalled. See link below:

- Penfield, NY, USA

problem #15

Apr 012014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 183,000 miles
I was driving my Ford Escape 2005 and it completely shuts off, the steering wheel got very hard!!! it was very difficult to steer,

- Ocala, FL, USA

problem #14

Dec 122007

Escape 4-cyl

  • 20,000 miles
I purchased car in January 2005, first time of this incident was in 2007, November, but it has been an ongoing problem during the winter months more so than summer. I am so nervous about having an accident I just want it fixed. I have it at a Ford dealer right now and it is going to cost me $650 to have this repaired. I certainly hope this will fix the problem, but I do not have faith here.

- Smyrna, DE, USA

problem #13

Sep 052013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 100,500 miles
After a recent road trip, I heard a clunking noise coming from the rear passenger side of vehicle. Checked items in cargo area, spare tire, jack and even checked to make sure back seat was secure. Clunking noise was the shock hitting the underside of vehicle. The shock assembly was no longer attached, it was rusted under the wheel well around the shock assembly. So with every bump in the road, it was clanking around. Vehicle was not safe to drive for fear that the shock would break and cause a tire blow out or worse cause an accident. I took it to a private auto body shop which cost me $900 to repair the damage. The drivers side wheel well is doing the same thing and I may not have a fuel tank eventually. This needs to be addressed and taken care of. I love my vehicle and love not having a car payment too.

- Blue Grass, IA, USA

problem #12

Sep 092013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 126,000 miles
This safety issue requires immediate attention by both the NHTSA and Ford: 61 NHTSA complaints filed to date: '04- 16; '05- 45. Vehicle taken to Ford dealership for service. Service notified that a forward lower ball joint was failing, no other defects were noted in the detailed visual inspection. It was replaced two days later. The following day of the repair, on a daily commute between tol to dtw, the right rear shock tower separated while driving at 70 mph. Vehicle began dog-tracking. Initial inspection did not reveal the hidden damage caused by corrosion at the welded seams of the inner wheel well due to an underbody coating. Upon removing the undercoating, very easily by hand, two large sections removed, revealed the shock was penetrating the interior of the vehicle and was no longer being structurally supported by the vehicles uni-body frame. The large sections removed would have caused tire failure at highway speeds by puncture or hazard to other following vehicles. The separation of the shock tower from the body, did cause the vehicle to jerk at the time of failure, creating a loud popping sound and causing potential hazard as the vehicle steered into other lanes of traffic at highway speeds (70 mph). The vehicle is rendered inoperable due to the catastrophic nature of the failure. Local Ford dealership states they are uncomfortable repairing the structure and not aware of any manufacture recalls. In contacting their sister dealership, they have previously repaired this defect, and continued on stating this failure is a known issue with 2004 - 2006 Escapes. The failed panel is available, P/N:part 7L827827886A. A reinforcement piece is also available. See example picture here: facebook site concerning this safety issue:

- Luna Pier, MI, USA

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