really awful
Crashes / Fires:
17 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
11 / 0
Average Mileage:
98,395 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

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2008 Ford Escape:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2008 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 26 of 31)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #103

Dec 152012

Escape 6-cyl

  • 110,000 miles


I was driving down the 5 freeway. I had been driving for about 45 minuets. I changed lanes to the right and the steering got extremely hard to move. I pulled of the freeway at the next off ramp. The entire time the wheel was very hard to maneuver. I came to a stop turned off the car, checked all my fluids, and googled the issue on my phone. All results lead to electrical power steering. I turned the car back on and all function returned.

- Arvin, CA, USA

problem #102

Feb 052013


  • 102,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving 45 mph, the steering wheel seized. The vehicle was moved to the shoulder and restarted and the system independently reset but the failure recurred. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer for inspection. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified and they stated that the vehicle needed to be taken to a dealer. The failure mileage was 102,000.

- Tustin, CA, USA

problem #101

Feb 042013


  • 62,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that the vehicle was started however, the steering wheel seized without warning. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer and was told that the steering column needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure and the current mileages were 62,000.

- Alberquerque, NM, USA

problem #100

Jan 242013


  • 44,000 miles


Power steering will not work. After shutting the vehicle off and restarting, it works. Same problem every other day. Must be an ongoing problem with this model and year Ford. Afraid it may shut down while driving on the freeway.

- Council, ID, USA

problem #99

Jan 302013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 135,000 miles
The first incident occurred when I was backing out of a parking spot and the steering wheel locked up and I was unable turn it in either direction. I turned the car off and on a few times before I was able to drive it. Upon returning home and pulling in my driveway, the steering wheel started to vibrate and move on it's own. I parked the car, turned it off and waited a couple of minutes before starting it up again. At that time, the steering wheel completely locked up and I was unable to turn it even after turning the car off and on a few times. So as of this morning (Feb 1, 2013) the steering wheel vibrates and is locked when I start the car.

- Milford, NJ, USA

problem #98

Jan 192013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 84,652 miles
While driving the vehicle the steering locked up. I managed to pull into a gas station and asked a gentleman for assistance. He happened to own a 2008 Ford Escape. He said to turn it off and start it again and it will work. It did. Now while idling the steering wheel moves left and right erratically. I researched the problem and it is happening to a lot of people with this vehicle, in some cases with serious accidents. I researched the steering system used. I uses a stepper motor for power assistance. I work with cnc equipment with stepper motors. Generally when a stepper motor acts erratically or locks in position it is a problem with software having been corrupted or an incidence that causes the encoder to lose position. ( both cases can be caused by shock, power surge or loss of communication) when a stepper motor is under power it is locked in position until it receives communication to move, in steps, very small increments. (you cannot move them by hand) this is ok on a cnc machine. You just ruin what ever you are fabricating. On a vehicle steering system, its catastrophic failure (you cannot turn the steering wheel) and a very serious issue. Stopping and restarting the vehicle and having it work again sounds like the system reboots. The re occurrence makes it sound like the firmware is corrupt. The system is apparently not isolated enough to avoid being corrupted. It may also be just a bad batch of encoders at any rate it is a serious issue Ford needs to address before someone gets killed. It isn't just the owners of these vehicle that need it fixed. Everyone on the road is endangered. I looked at nhtsas test protocol and found no tests for electric power steering systems. In the past this wasn't an issue with hydraulic systems, you had manual over-ride. You can't turn these systems manually. You go whatever direction it is pointed when it locks.

- Mancos, CO, USA

problem #97

Jan 282013


  • 69,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving 30 mph and attempting a left turn, the power steering assist failed. The contact mentioned that the vehicle became hard to steer. The contact shut off and restarted the vehicle, as it resumed normal operation. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where the technician advised that the power steering sensor was defective and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure but did not offer any assistance since the vehicle was not included in any recalls. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 69,000.

- German Town, WI, USA

problem #96

Jan 232013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 57,000 miles
2008 Ford Escape with serious steering wheel shaking during driving. Feels like column is going to lock up or make vehicle swerve off course. When the car was stopped and turned off, and back on symptoms went away. However, upon driving vehicle again, same conditions came back- very strong and very difficult to keep vehicle on drive path. When googled- many reports show up about serious and expensive replacements of the entire steering column are out there. See:www.aboutautomobile.com/complaint/2008/Ford/Escape/steering there are many other site with complaints about this issue. How can Ford not issue a recall about power steering column failures? this should be considered a serious risk issue.

- Medfield, MA, USA

problem #95

Jan 222013


  • 155,000 miles
Vehicle lost power steering while driving. While vehicle is idling, steering wheel pulses back and forth slightly, but occasionally turns right by itself. Ford states that this is an issue with the sensors on the steering column wearing out, but is not a safety issue? I guess brake failure is not a safety issue either! the "fix" is only 14-1500.00. This should be a mandatory safety recall repaired at Ford Motor Company expense.

- Monroe Twsp, NJ, USA

problem #94

Jan 282013

Escape 4-cyl

  • miles
This morning I was backing up from my drive way. Than when I put it in drive the steering wheel would not turn. It scared me being that I was in the street so I turned the car off and turned it back on and the steering wheel worked. But this is scary if I had been somewhere else and there had been traffic. I have had my ignition worked on by Ford several times. They are telling me that this is another problem and it has nothing to do with what is going on. They are telling me that it is going to cost me around $1600. This should not have happen.

- Irving, TX, USA

problem #93

Jan 222013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 110,000 miles


While backing out of a parking space the steering locked on my wife's 2008 Ford Escape. She called me to come help her as she was not able to move her Escape. Upon arrival I inspected the vehicle for obvious signs of problems, none were noted. I tried to move the steering wheel; I was quite shocked that the steering wheel could not be moved. Since I am 6'4" and 300lbs most things that I grab move?the steering wheel should have moved, just without the assist of the power assist. The vehicle was towed to a Ford dealership for them to diagnose the issue. I was informed that the sensors in the steering column are bad. The dealership stated that they were able to reset the computer and that the steering now functions. The dealership informed me that I have two choices drive the vehicle and see if the issue repeats or replace the entire steering column ($1,500). I explained that this is in fact a safety issue as the steering failed completely and locked up as I was unable to move the steering wheel. Ford customer care was contacted and they have offered no assistance in this issue and claim that they have no knowledge of any issues pertaining to this problem on record. This statement by Ford customer care seems to be highly suspect as a quick internet search found many identical issues. The complete failure of the steering system is beyond unacceptable! if someone with my strength cannot move the steering wheel than how is someone the size of my wife supposed to move the steering wheel if and in this case when the steering system fails. Ford needs to accept that there is in fact a major safety problem related to the failure of the electronic steering system of the Ford Escape. Complete failure of the steering is not acceptable. Again this was a complete failure of the steering system!!!

- Hagerstown Md , MD, USA

problem #92

Jan 212013


  • 72,900 miles
1/22/13-started my vehicle up at 8am and the power steering would not engage, thinking is was due to cold, I stopped the vehicle and restarted the vehicle up, power assist engage and I drove the vehicle approx 1/4mile when I attempted to make a left turn the power assist failed and nearly collided my vehicle onto oncoming traffic due to steering failure; I immediately drove home and parked the vehicle. On 1/23/13 I drove the vehicle very carefully to a nearby Ford dealership (approx 2 miles from home). I was advised by the service representative (after a diagnostic test) that the steering column requires replacement due to the electronic module failure as it is part of the vehicles electronic power assist system (epas) and was quoted a repair price (>1400.00). I did some online research and found that this type of steering failure is extremely common with this vehicle and the epas and many many complaints have been registered by consumers on this exact steering problem. Due to the unpredictability, potential danger and the commonality of this type of complaint with this type of vehicle, could this warrant a recall of this vehicle or at least a service bulletin of this potentially catastrophic steering issue?

- El Paso, TX, USA

problem #91

Jan 222013


  • 65,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving 30 mph, the power steering failed without warning. The contact mentioned that it became very difficult to steer the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the technician diagnosed that the steering column needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure but did not offer any assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure and current mileage was 65,000.

- Novato, CA, USA

problem #90

Jan 122013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 88,400 miles
Twice in the last month, while making sharp turn and U-turn, we lost our power steering. The first time was when turning into a parking lot, but the second time was in traffic. Each time it took all of our strength to get the steering wheel turned so that the vehicle could be moved out of traffic. Both times we put vehicle in park and turned off ignition. When re-started, power steering was fine. This is a very dangerous vehicle failure. We were fortunate that we were able to get out of traffic each time, but may not be as lucky the next. When we got home, we googled 2008 Ford Escape steering problems to see if there had been a recall that we were not aware of, and we were astonished to see how many other people had reported this same failure. A recall needs to be issued before someone loses their life.

- Rowlett, TX, USA

problem #89

Jan 102013


  • 96,000 miles
Driving down highway and lost power steering. Had to use all strength to exit the highway. Stopped and restarted car and everything was fine. Began driving toward home, but during a stop light steering wheel began to shake (while idle) and lost power steering again. I have extended warranty and this is not covered. This is very dangerous and ridiculous.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #88

Jan 042013


  • 101,500 miles
My Ford Escape is my family and work vehicle. One morning I started it after it was parked in cold overnight, engine started but the steering was stuck, thought battery was bad. Restarted several times until steering loosened up. Drove car and every stop light or while idling, the steering wheel vibrated so hard and have to hold it steady, thought, time to have my control arm replaced again. Took it to a friend's car shop, said, they've been having costumers bringing their Ford Escapes lately with the same problem. They couldn't fix it. Told me to go to my dealership. Dealership diagnosed it, electronic steering problem $90 for diagnosis, $1100 parts and labor, about 3-days to order for parts. Too expensive and dangerous, needs to have a recall.

- Grosse Pointe Woods, MI, USA

problem #87

Dec 052012

Escape 6-cyl

  • 78,100 miles
The car involved was a 2008 Ford Escape. I was driving at about 45 and I lost complete control of my power steering. I was unable to turn steering wheel. I used all my force to get to the side of the road. I then turned the car off and turned it back on my steering was then fine. I got back on the road and I lost all of my power steering again. This steering problem is very dangerous and recall must be enforced!!

- Boulder, CO, USA

problem #86

Jan 102013


  • 91,999 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated when she started the vehicle the steering wheel began to fail. The vehicle was towed to a dealer for diagnostic testing and they stated the entire steering column needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure but offered no assistance. The failure and current mileage was 91,999.

- Kennesaw, GA, USA

problem #85

Nov 012012

Escape 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape. The contact stated the steering wheel became hard to turn while driving in traffic. The steering wheel returned to its normal position when the vehicle was turned off and restarted. The failure was experienced several times. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 80,000 and the current mileage was 84,000. Updated 3/20/13 the consumer stated there was a complete loss of power steering when accelerating forward from an idle position. Updated 04/17/13

- Camden , NC, USA

problem #84

Jan 102013


  • 115,000 miles
Drove vehicle yesterday, no problems. This morning started to drive and lost power steering. Made it back home but could have been bad if on highway.

- Edgewood, NM, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?