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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
19 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
12 / 0
Average Mileage:
101,550 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.

2008 Ford Escape steering problems

steering problem

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2008 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 26 of 40)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #283

Mar 152014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 129,000 miles


Happened several times since Nov 2013, while pulling from parked position, steering is very difficult to turn. Have to turn off engine and restart to have steering operational. Has occurred 6 times.

- Eagle River, AK, USA

problem #282

Feb 242014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 114,000 miles
The steering on the subject vehicle "failed" intermittently. In essence, the power steering became non-power steering without any warning on 3 or 4 occasions. The vehicle was much more difficult to steer than a car that had standard steering. If the car was re-started, on occasion it would recover the power steering. I needed to have the entire steering column replaced, which was a repair that cost $970.60. More importantly, this is a serious safety issue.

- Rochester Hills, MI, USA

problem #281

Dec 212012

Escape 4-cyl

  • 52,000 miles
Driving down the road, turned down a busy street, wheel locked up. Completely frozen, took an incredible amount of strength to turn into a parking lot to safety. Restarted car and it was fixed. Happened again later that day going down the highway, steering wheel locked. (it's like I have no power steering at all, but it is all electric). The wheel has continued to lock at random times, with no warning what so ever for 20 (twenty!) more times, I have documented them all. Nothing provokes this happening, like turning, going up or down hill, slow speeds, nothing, it just happens out of no where. This is extremely dangerous, numerous times I have been in very heavy traffic with no outlet available for me to turn into. It has happened waiting at a stoplight in a turn only lane, but I can't turn the wheel. It has happened again while in the middle lane of a busy highway and I've had to very forcefully angle the wheel so I could get on the shoulder. The wheel unlocks after you restart the car. My stability control light turns on every time the wheel locks. I have done research this is a known problem, hundreds of complaints and Ford is doing nothing about it. From what I have read, you have to replace the entire steering column (a $1,300 fix) due to a faulty switch. This is extremely dangerous and I could very easily wreck if it happens in a bad time or bad location. I have had numerous very close calls already and I am afraid to continue driving every day. Ford needs to recall this immediately.

- Kyle, TX, USA

problem #280

Mar 012014


  • miles


The power steering suddenly stopped functioning while traveling 45 mph on the highway. I was able to pull the car over to the side of the road and call for assistance. After getting the car to a nearby garage they informed me nothing was wrong once the car was turned off and then on again. I took the car to a Ford dealer where they knew of the issue and said it was a common failure in the 2008 Ford Escapes. The fix was to replace the entire steering column. A quick search of the internet for 2008 Ford Escape power steering fail yielded multiple results and a pending recall in Canada for an issue with the power steering sensor.

- Shavertown, PA, USA

problem #279

Jan 172014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 96,889 miles
Without warning, the power steering on my 2008 Ford Escape simply went out. I had no issues or indication that the steering was about to fail and suddenly, the power steering simply stopped working. Fortunately, this loss of power steering didn't result in a crash in my case. I quickly scheduled an inspection at the Ford dealership and they confirmed that the power steering had in fact failed requiring replacement of my steering column. This was almost a $1,600 repair but had to be done immediately due to the serious nature of the failure. In researching this issue on the internet, I have found scores of other people with the same issue. I discovered that Ford had changed from a hydraulic power steering system to an electric system starting in 2008. Clearly this system is defective and should be looked into immediately. I was lucky not to have had an accident but one day some one will be killed when this system fails again. Don't let this turn into another issue like is currently happening with GM ignitions and lives are lost.

- Oregon, WI, USA

problem #278

Feb 012014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 88,000 miles
The power steering goes out without any warning, making the car impossible to control. This is a problem many many people have reported, I can only hope enough people report it so that you perform a recall. The power steering can come on and go off again intermittently, but this only gives the driver a false sense of security and allows the problem to go unchecked a little longer!

- Granger, IN, USA

problem #277

Mar 132014


  • miles


The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that the power steering failed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not contacted about the failure. The failure mileage and VIN was not available.

- Shirley, MA, USA

problem #276

Feb 082014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
Lost power steering when turning from a stop. Pulled over stopped and restarted the car and the steering came back. Happened again 2 weeks later. When the steering goes out it is nearly impossible to steer the car. The second time it happened was at 30 mph and was lucky enough to be near a shopping center where I could pull in, stop and restart the car. There is no warning when this happens it just goes!

- Naugatuck, CT, USA

problem #275

Feb 132014


  • 87,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while traveling various speeds, the power steering failed without warning. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for a diagnostic. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure approximate failure mileage was 87,000 and the current mileage was 87,500. The VIN was not available.

- Garden City , MI, USA

problem #274

Mar 102014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while traveling various speeds, the power steering failed. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was found that the electronic power steering had failed. The vehicle was being repaired. The manufacturer was not contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 80,000.

- Three Rivers, MI, USA

problem #273

Mar 032014


  • 80,000 miles


I was heading to work one morning, and I started the car up and didn't have power steering. I shut the car off, and the steering came back. (at the beginning, shutting the car off would fix the problem right way.) I pulled out of my driveway and drove down the road with the steering wheel shaking. There was also a quiet grinding noise coming from the steering column. As the car slowed down (at stop lights etc.), the steering wheel shook more and the noise grew a little louder. As the days went on (3-4 days later), the shaking and noise got worse until it was an uncontrollable, constant shaking of the steering wheel and the noise became so loud and horrid that I thought the car might break down. Within that week, as I started my car, the power steering went out about a total of 10 times, and I had to shut off the car and restart it. Unlike at the beginning, by the end of the week, I had to shut my car off 4-5 times before the steering would come back. The last day of driving the car, the steering wheel was so loose that it was hard to control on the back roads/highways/freeways and over pot holes. At one point, I made a right hand turn, and I almost thought I was not going to be able to bring the steering wheel/car back. Thankfully, I (and no one else) has died from this manufacturer defect in the 2008 Ford Escapes, but is that what it is going to take in order for something to be done?

- Three Rivers, MI, USA

problem #272

Feb 282014

Escape 4WD 4-cyl

  • 125,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving approximately 30mph, a loud grinding noise emitted under the front and the steering wheel failed without warning. The contact was able to exit traffic by turning the steering wheel with force. The local mechanic inspected the vehicle and located the failure at the power steering column and advised that the power steering system needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 125,000. Updated 11/20/14 the consumer stated the vehicle was repaired. Updated 5/5/2015

- Montpelier , VA, USA

problem #271

Feb 042014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 119,200 miles
On Feb 4 2014 our daughter called very upset stating while making left hand turn steering froze up stopped car no oncoming traffic forced steering back came clear later that afternoon steering froze 2 more times on my wife had to turn engine off and restart steering wheel also had a slight vibration Ford has to know they have a problem echlon Ford stratford NJ knows and had no problem handing me a bill for $1431.06 im just glad there were no injuries or accidents or much worse my wife and I have owned 5 Ford vehicles over the yrs will now buy a GMC terrain if Ford does not address this problem.

- Sicklerville, NJ, USA

problem #270

Mar 052014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 171,979 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving 50 mph, the steering wheel seized. The vehicle was shut off and restarted several times before the vehicle functioned normally. The vehicle was taken the dealer for inspection where they stated that the steering torque sensor needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure but was unable to produce a remedy. The failure mileage was 171,979.

- Rising Star, TX, USA

problem #269

Mar 032014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 89,000 miles
Upon starting my car, I realized I could not turn the steering wheel without great effort. Tried it the next day, and the power steering was working, although the steering wheel was vibrating strangely. Have had the same problem 2 additional times. After reading numerous other entries on NHTSA website on this same issue, I learned that if I turned the car off and then turned it on, power steering resumed. This worked for me this morning after 3 attempts. Brought into mechanic and they could not assess issue. Will be bringing into dealer this week. Very concerned about what happens if I'm driving and this outage recurs.

- Minneapolis, MN, USA

problem #268

Mar 092014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 77,500 miles
After driving on the freeway for approximately 45 miles, I was unable to steer the wheel without a lot of force. I was unable to stay on the road and came very close to hitting another vehicle before coming to a stop along side the freeway. In the past 6 months I have had to replace the transmission (at 69000 miles) and now this. I am not an aggressive driver and feel these problems should be addressed. The steering is a very serious safety issue and should have a recall!

- Gowen, MI, USA

problem #267

Mar 082014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 123,750 miles
Electric power steering went out without zero warning signs and zero warning signifiers from vehicle dash. Was driving on I-10 at 75 mph - steering has always shook at speeds over 70 mph - steering just locked up in the middle of driving, and went into manual mode. There is no recall on this item with Ford, but the same issue, at about the same mileage has been reported all over North America (up into Canada as well. Canada has opened an investigation on this matter for their citizens. A report has been submitted to Ford and I have been told to contact the dealership - it is my perception that all owners of this vehicle have been told the same thing. However, a resolution must be made - and not at the cost of the owners because this seems chronically defective. The 2008 Ford Escape was the first to have this specific power steering placed in it.

- El Paso, TX, USA

problem #266

Mar 032014

Escape 6-cyl

  • 197,000 miles
Steering wheel started to shake from side to side then lost power to steering wheel like it went from easy to very hard to steer. Turned car off the restarted and it was ok. Now it happens all the time. When I start car up no power, while I'm driving and I loss power.

- Manchester, NJ, USA

problem #265

Nov 112013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
I was driving to parking lot at local store and the power steering quit workingso I stopped in a safe area to investigate the problem shut the vehicle off to look under the hood did not find anything started the vehicle back up problem went away then it happened again at home upon startup no power steering turn vehicle back off has to do this a couple of times then problem went this problem is more constant of no power steering and now the steering wheel sits and chatters back and forth at idle and driving down the road so I took it to the dealer ship and talked to the guys in the parts department and they said this is an ongoing problem and Ford can get it figured out as to what there going to do they said as of right now they can't order any power assist columns right yet so I guess Ford is dragging there feet on this one I guess until someone dies maybe all the Ford CEO's need get into one of they problem vehicles and drive for awhile and see what all of us are talking about??

- Adrian, MI, USA

problem #264

Feb 192014

Escape 4-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
While driving, the steering wheel would shimmy as if a wheel was out of alignment. The steering wheel locked up and was extremely difficult to turn. I pull off into a service road and turned the car off. I started the car back up after about 5 minutes and I was able to steer again. It happens repeatedly when after the car has been parked and I start the car up, the steering freezes. I'll restart the car 3 or 4 times before the steering unfreezes.

- Greenbelt, MD, USA

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