really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
113,164 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 drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2005 Ford Freestar Owner Comments (Page 4 of 11)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #152

Dec 312012


  • 70,000 miles


I am having transmission issues with high revving, soft shifting and what feels like slipping. And then today when I drove the van there was smoke coming out from under the dash board along with the other issues. After doing some research on line it seems as though it is the control module and as it gets wet things start to go wrong with the van. The design is faulty and needs to be fixed as water gets into the module and the connector. I have included a video link from youtube for you to look over regarding this problem and how bad design is leading to all these small complaints and problems. I am taking the van to my local dealer or shop to see if this could be the cause of my problems. This is the youtube video link www.youtube.com/watch?V=lhjevbmuxjw

- Maumee, OH, USA

problem #151

Nov 012010

Freestar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2005 Ford Freestar. Consumer writes in regards to transmission failure recall notice. The consumer stated in November 2010, the transmission failed, with no symptoms of failure. The transmission was replaced. In August 2012, the torque converter was replaced. The consumer believed only the torque converter should have been replaced in 2010, and not the entire transmission. The consumer is seeking reimbursement for the transmission.

- Newport, NH, USA

problem #150

Jun 082013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 79,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. The contact stated that the vehicle was included and repaired under NHTSA campaign id number: 12V006000 (power train). However, after the repair was performed the vehicle would not accelerate and stalled sporadically. The contact stated that prior to the recall repair he had not experienced a failure. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnosis where the technician found that the PCM would have to be replaced. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 79,000.

- Redford, MI, USA

problem #149

Jun 062013


  • 113,000 miles


After rain all night on wed.6/4/2013 went to take van to pittsburgh started hesitating and vibrating while on highway could not speed up and tried to get in slow lane lot of traffic almost collision. Tried to go up small hill no power vibrating trying to stall, turned off wouldn't startfor 15 minutes very scary. Looked online bulletin for PCM gets wet and causes this, someone could have been killed.

- Steubenville, OH, USA

problem #148

May 192013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 100,050 miles
I became aware of other customer complaints about the transmission/PCM related concerns in 2011 when experiencing a vibration when shifting from 2nd to 3rd (it seemed) and researched my vehicle and possible related concerns. I also discussed with a local dealer and I followed a dealers recommendation by having my transmission fluid changed as recommended to Ford specs. The vibration seemed to calm somewhat. Around this same time I noticed my cruise control would work only off and on at different speeds and times. No check engine light ever came on. I sent my an email to Ford of Canada at which time I was advised that a torque converter recall was coming and that I should contact the dealer. I was advised to wait for the formal recall which I received and booked my recall and it was completed in approximately late 2012. I also had another recall done for a seat concern just in May 2013. While driving to the us May 19th 2013 at 100km/hr my vehicles cruise was acting suspicious (hard shift up) and I disengaged it for this reason. I then noticed my vehicle was at 3000rpms so seemed to be stuck in 3rd gear or something. It then failed (was like I was in neutral) and I was barely able to get off at an exit and had to push my vehicle into a spot at a service station. I was very concerned for my safety and my family at this time. I was in total shock that there was no real warning and if I know if I was in the fast lane I hate to think of the end result. I checked the dipstick for the tranny and there seemed to be enough fluid however slight amounts of smoke came from the dipstick reservoir. No signs of leaking below the vehicle whatsoever. It was towed to a Ford dealer and I was left with no real option other than replace the tranny for $3200. My home dealer in Canada was closed for the holiday.

- Brantford, Ontario Canada, NY, USA

problem #147

May 162013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 66,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. The contact stated that while driving approximately 15 mph, the vehicle would not accelerate. The vehicle was towed to the dealer for diagnosis. The technician stated that the transmission and torque converter would have to be replaced. The contact referenced NHTSA campaign number: 12V006000 (power train) but was advised by the manufacturer that the vehicle was not included in the recall. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 66,000.

- Collinsville, OK, USA

problem #146

Apr 272013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 78,500 miles


Traveling on highway at 70 mph when without any warning lost all power. Coasted to stop and had no gears forward or reverse. No prior noises, warning lights or any indication of problems. Very dangerous situation. Had I been passing it could have been tragic. Torque converter is covered under recall but dealership I had vehicle towed to stated from their diagnostics and discussions with factory the problem was not the torque converter. I am having them install rebuilt transmission for $4,185. There are many similar complaints on various websites, including this one.

- Missouri City, TX, USA

problem #145

Mar 182013


  • 149,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. The contact stated that while driving at 55 mph, the RPM in the tachometer fluctuated rapidly and the engine revved. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and the recall repair for NHTSA campaign id 12V006000 (power train: Torque converter malfunctions) was performed. The failure recurred every time the contact drove the vehicle. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 149,000. The current mileage was 150,000.

- Cass Lake , MN, USA

problem #144

Apr 272013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 127,230 miles
I have had my van back for three days since having the recall repairs done on the torque (which I filled a complaint about after being told mine wasn't recalled by the dealership, which it actually was) and seats. It has been raining heavily for a couple of days here. While driving down the road, and coming to yet another stop sign, my van stalls out and completely dies with no warning. I had no control over brakes, steering wheel, nothing. My husband comes and gets me, our daughter, and the van. The van started right up when he got there after approximately 15 min after I had repeatedly tried to get it start with no success. We let it idle for a bit because he thinks I'm crazy, and it dies again. Same problem with it getting it to start. Come to find out, the computer and PCM are getting wet, causing total power failure... ugh! is there anything on this van that was made right?! very dangerous van!

- Mountain Grove, MO, USA

problem #143

Apr 112013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 126,000 miles
I was driving my car, the same as any other day. I came to a stop light and my car wouldn't go, as if I had it in neutral. There was some vibration and it was extremely hard to turn my car. I nearly hit a business that was on the corner of the turn. Then, it started working again, just to soon quit working again. I had my mechanic look at it to discover it was the torque. I am having the same issues as the other Ford Freestars that were recalled, but mine specific van was not for some reason but showing the exact same issues as the recalled ones.

- Mountain Grove, MO, USA

problem #142

Jan 052013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 83,327 miles


Recalled torque converter replaced in 2005 Freestar by dealer. ( no warranty paperwork given for this part.) 5 months later, while driving 40 mph, experienced total power loss including power steering and power brakes. Struggled to pull car off the main road. Towed to often used and nearby repair facility. Trusted mechanic pulled car apart and replaced transmission ( including new torque converter) for total of $2225. Van had been carefully maintained and had 83,000 miles on it. Ford dealership ( tom's Ford of keyport, NJ) refused to reimburse just for cost of 2nd torque converter that failed since "the work was not done at Ford dealership." ( how would I know this was required w/out ever receiving warranty paperwork" and I remembered the original recall form from Ford stated part replacement by outside mechanics would be reimbursed??") local dealership "couldn't help." Notice, I did not even try to get Ford to acknowledge transmission failure caused by recalled part or to cover the new transmission costs. Followup through Ford's consumer division also denied reimbursement for 2nd failed torque converter. Interesting quotes from them: "we have not received many complaints about transmission failure for that vehicle" and " the failure of the torque converter does not cause transmission failure." Hmmm beware of total loss of power with this minivan when the transmission fails!!! dangerous and Ford is playing dumb. Unfortunately, lives at risk with this denial strategy. I used to be a "Ford" man. Drove only Ford for decades: F150 truck + $$$ Ford rv + Explorer + escape, etc. No longer.

- Morganville, NJ, USA

problem #141

Apr 082008

Freestar 6-cyl

  • miles
First we had the transmission failure that was unsafe and had to pay for the repair ourselves then finally Ford issued a tsb to repair and recovered our money. Along with that is the more dangerous situation of the van stopping jerking speeding up the driving on the road especially when it rains or even a slight mist. This need to addressed by the NHTSA and pressure Ford to repair this before they are sued for a death caused by the lack of attention to this highly safety related failure.

- Oak Creek, WI, USA

problem #140

Mar 232013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 157,000 miles
Driving down the road in heavy traffic, without warning suddenly had no power, at 40mph, put it in neutral and restarted only to die again 3 more times. I thought I was out of gas but the gage said 1/8th of a tank. Pulled off the road and had friends bring gas. Started up fine and drove maybe a block when it started sputtering and bucking. The check engine idiot light came on so I pulled over again. I reset the battery connection and light went off. I pulled off to drive around in the parking lot and it died when I cranked the wheel turning every corner. Started again, this time it was hard to turn over, and it sputtered and the transaxle idiot light started flashing, the radio came on by itself and the eve player ejected. Interior lights were on but switch was turned off. Checked the tranny fluid, it looked a little low in the dark(midnight) so put in half a quart. Light went out but the van refused to go forward. I dropped it manually into 1st and it slowly moved. Parked it and tried other gears, all unresponsive but when shifting into neutral the engine jumped and the rpms revved up to 3000!! afraid it would jump into gear and run over my friend, I cut off the ignition while in neutral. I waited until midnight for no traffic, then drove the van home, keeping the emergency flashers on. Was able to travel about 25 feet per restart, each time the van would die when speed exceeded 15mph or 2000rpms. Took an hour to get the 1.5 miles home. This van had just gotten a full service oil change/lube/filter service and I had the transmission serviced at sears upon purchasing it just 6 months ago and had no other issues at all. Upon researching, this is a known issue that Ford published but refuses to fix/recall. There is a recall on my van's torque converter, this is a serious safety issue and a major defect that will get someone killed or serious injured.

- Federal Way, WA, USA

problem #139

Feb 192013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 112,000 miles
Took van in to transmission repair shop because even though Ford replaced the torque converter on the recall the transmission still slipped. When repair was completed we went and picked up our van on the way home it died and all the lights were going crazy. Shop towed back to their shop. They went through van and found the computer was saturated with water. We were told need a new computer and new wiring harness and this has been a known issue with Ford with their computers getting wet. Now we are out 2600 and still don't have a car. If this is a known issue why isn't Ford doing anything to fix the issue?

- Puyallup, WA, USA

problem #138

Jan 282013


  • 112,782 miles
My vehicle was in the park position and when I proceeded to drive it started hesitating and would not pick up speed.

- Redford, MI, USA

problem #137

Feb 152013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • miles
After years of problems, previous postings on this site, and 3 pcms later... the story continues: Our van has been in the shop 5 times within ~ 4-5 weeks, and the dealership keeps working to seal the PCM unit. The unit was sealed by Ford with standard module seals, green expandable foam, etc., but water still got into the computer housing. During research on the Freestar's computer problems, I read about the clip slots (where the PCM fits into the van) providing a means of water intrusion also, so they took it out again and sealed those. I got the van out of the shop, and the next day the check engine light came on. We took it by an auto parts place for a scan, and it showed a PCM problem. (the guy at the auto parts store said he had a 2005 Freestar, and his PCM had shorted out also from water damage.) at least, this time a code was given! generally, codes are not generated since the malfunctioning computer is the code generator. I don't know if another PCM has shorted out in our van, or if water has once again seeped into the unit. The wet winter in Georgia has practically rendered my van useless for the past couple of months. The van is truly a "fair weather" vehicle. To find more information on this issue, google "2005 Ford Freestar PCM water intrusion" or visit any of the auto safety sites on-line such as NHTSA or arfc.org. I am currently seeking legal counsel regarding this issue, since Ford has failed to take responsibility for the problems. Unfortunately, PCM issues have often remained undetected due to the lack of code indications. (it took almost 2 years for one of many mechanics to diagnose our Freestar's issues, and that was a result of on-line research.) PCM water intrusion problems usually are manifested as transmission or engine issues such as no reverse, erratic gear changes, RPM "revs", or other unexplained occurrences.

- Jasper, GA, USA

problem #136

Feb 012013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 140,000 miles
The vehicle stalled in the middle of the road with my wife driving and two children in the car. Luckily no one was injured, my wife was able to coast the vehicle out of harms way. This could have been so much worse had she been pulling out into traffic or merging on to the interstate. The problem is the PCM module has been getting wet, Ford knows of this problem and even created a service bulletin about it. At the very, very least I would have thought Ford would have contacted the vehicle owners to make them aware that a serious issue like this existed. This has the potential to have grave consequences for innocent families owning these vehicles. It is my opinion that vans in particular should be scrutinized a little more closely due to their intended audience, soccer moms hauling around the most valuable possession of that family, their children. It is beyond me how automakers can put unsafe vehicles like this on the road and they are not forced to repair issues like these when the owners and their families are at risk. This is my second but separate complaint I lodged against Ford about this vehicle. The first one was in 2008 or 2009 when the torque converter failed without warning, leaving the vehicle lifeless in the middle of the road. This vehicle should be deemed unsafe for the roads and Ford should be forced to have a fair buy back program for these vehicles.

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #135

Jan 092013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 85,954 miles
Trying to back out of my driveway, van will not go into reverse. Restart van, put it into reverse & it falters & stalls. Restart &got van into drive, but it will not accelerate until 3000 rpms, then jerks into drive & stalls again. Had it towed to a local mechanic I have used for over 20 yrs. Van shows no codes.replace battery, have throttle body cleaned, cam sensor is tested, shows not problems. Van starts & runs for one day. Same exact issue happens again. Have it towed a second time. Again, no codes come up.mechanic flushes out the tranny, & van runs again for 50 miles w/O incident. But again, trying to leave for work next day, van displays the exact same issues. No torque to move the van, constant stalling as soon as it is taken out of drive. Will not move at all or starts & moves very hesitantly into reverse, catches gear & jerks, stalls once again. Tow again to a Ford dealer. Told the prob is the recalled torque converter. Have it replaced, and van doesn't make it the 12 miles home. The van lost complete power on a highway & I was almost hit by oncoming traffic. Tow back, now being told the transmission needs replacement, over $3,000 because metal from the recalled part has dislogged into tranny. I am now finding thru my own research that this is a common problem relating to the PCM, which replacing tranny doesn't solve the issues. Ford is offering no help or compensation am a single mom of 2 kids, 1 is disabled, & now been fired from my job because I can't get there 28 miles away. The van is stranded at the dealer, because I have no money to fix or tow again. I am at my wits end. Ford needs to step up to the plate &replace this van!!!! repairing the torque converter, cam sensor, or transmission will not solve the PCM problem, which is not sealed properly, & after numerous repairs, will malfunction again> my Q to Ford is:does someone have to die for U to do something?

- New Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #134

Feb 072012


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the vehicle stalled and multiple warning lamps illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that the PCM module 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 mileage was 90,000 and the current mileage was 176,000.

- East Freetown, MA, USA

problem #133

Jan 172013

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 131,200 miles
Engine stays in third gear on highway, windshield wiper fluid won't spray and power locks don't work with button on doors or key fob. Getting 11 miles a gallon because won't shift into fourth gear and that's a highway trip!

- Ogden, UT, USA

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