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 9 of 11)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #52

Nov 012011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles


My wife was parking the van and backed up for better access to the parking space. When she shifted back to drive the vehicle would not move. She called me and I went to check out the vehicle and found no transmission engagement in any gear. I checked the manual linkage and it was connected and tight. I checked the oil and noted the oil was quite a bit above the full level like the transmission pump had quit working. We towed the vehicle to the shop where I work and removed the transmission pan. We found the transmission pan clean with only normal amounts of metal on the magnet and no indication of burned clutches. After reading the descriptions of many similar failures on the various boards I am fairly certain we will find torque converter/input shaft failure when we remove and disassemble the transmission.

- Helper, UT, USA

problem #51

Oct 212011


  • 83,000 miles
My wife and I own a 2005 Ford Windstar. On Oct. 21 2011 my wife arrived home from work and I took the van to pick up my son from his school. Without warning the vans rpms went up and then the van stalled. I restarted the van but the van acted like it did not want to shift gears and the van stalled again. I was only 1block from home and was lucky to make it home while having to restart the van several times. I called the local Ford service center and they said to tow it there and it would cost $100 to hook it up to their computer. I love how it cost me $100 to have Ford tell me whats wrong then wants me to pay them to fix it. It only takes 5 minutes to hook up the computer with all the complaints I have seen you would think they should know. I was lucky to have a friend who works at Ford and he had to replace the PCM due to water coming into contact with the PCM. We got our van back on Thursday Nov. 3rd 2011. Then on Nov. 7th 2011(4 days later) my wife was on a busy interstate ramp getting ready to merge on the highway at about 45mph when the RPM's shot up the van hesitated and lost power she started coasting to the shoulder while traffic was speeding around her. It was also on a curve so traffic could not see her until they were right on top of her. Even on the shoulder when she called me she was terrified that someone was going to hit her because the shoulder was very narrow and traffic was within inches of the van. We had the van towed to Ford and they are going to take a look at it this Monday (Nov. 14, 2011) we are due to go out of town Friday Nov. 18th and we do not know if we will have a van to go on a vacation that has been planned for a year. My wife and I do not even know if we can trust our Ford Freestar to make the trip so we our going to have the extra expense of renting a car. We are out $750 so far and another $400 to rent a car. We have 83,000 mi.

- Portage, IN, USA

problem #50

Nov 072011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • miles
I was driving with my 2 children when my 2005 Ford Freestar just stopped in the middle of the road. Thank god it was daytime, and not a lot of people on this road at the time. My car has only 54,000 miles on it. I was told afterward that it was my transmission. The transmission needs to be replaced. I had to wait standing with my 2 small children on the side of the road 20 minutes for a tow truck. This was very unsafe! their is no reason this should be. It is going to cost me $2000 to fix which I do not have. Of course my warranty only covered up until 50,000 miles. Ford said that's to bad. This is terrible something needs to be done immediately! this is no way to do business or to treat people. Someone needs to fix this...

- Mount Sinai, NY, USA

problem #49

Nov 062011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 56,000 miles


My wife and daughter were traveling on a highway when without any warning the transmission suffered a complete breakdown. The engine was running fine, but the transmission was not transferring any power to the wheels. Stranded in the middle of a busy highway for three hours awaiting a tow, my wife and daughter tried in vain to get the vehicle to move off of the roadway while cars raced around them. The transmission gave no prior indication of impending mechanical problems and was always properly serviced. In my opinion a vehicle with only 56,000 miles showing no indications or warning signs should not have such a catastrophic failure. From my limited research it would appear that this is not one isolated incident of this exact circumstance. It seems likely that a defect in the torque converter caused the splines to shear off resulting in complete and sudden loss of power to the drive wheels which renders the vehicle inoperable. This can be particularly dangerous if it happens while merging, crossing an intersection or being stranded on a busy highway. Ford should be made to correct what seems like a very dangerous design flaw before someone has to be seriously injured or worse.

- Lake Grove, NY, USA

problem #48

Jun 152011


  • 97,950 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. The contact was driving 50 mph when the vehicle stalled without warning. The contact drove in neutral to a local mechanic who advised that the fuel filter would need replacing. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred two weeks later. The vehicle was taken to a repair shop where the power control module was replaced but the failure persisted. The vehicle was towed back for inspection and the contact was advised by the mechanic that the transmission needed replacing. The transmission was replaced bu the failure was not corrected. It was then found that waster was entering the vehicle through the windshield and contacting the wiring for the power control. The mechanic removed the water from the tubes of the power control module and added caulk to prevent water intrusion. There was an investigation under NHTSA action number: PE10033 (vehicle speed control power train:automatic transmission:control module (tcm, PCM)) that could possibly have been related to the failure. The vehicle was repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 97,950.

- Lakewood, OH, USA

problem #47

Oct 312011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 63,004 miles
While driving from Florida to Virginia on Monday, October 31, 2011 at dusk we experienced a sudden and unexpected loss of motive power due to failure of my 2005 Freestar's torque converter as diagnosed by the mechanics at jim bilton Ford. We were traveling 70 mph on I-95 in the left lane when the failure occurred. Fortunately, in spite of traffic, we were able to get into the right hand lane and over into the emergency lane. The vehicle had to be towed to the repair shop where the diagnoses was made. We were told the part was on national back order but they were able to get one in on Wednesday afternoon. When they installed it that part proved to be defective as well. They have ordered another part and it should be in Friday. I am, however, very concerned about the safety of this repair. Will there be yet another failure and will we be as lucky next time. In the meantime we are stranded in South Carolina each day thinking we will be getting our van back tomorrow.

- Clarksville, VA, USA

problem #46

Oct 022011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 59,000 miles


We were in traffic to the browns football game getting ready to exit and the van just lost mobility, it wouldn't move, , I pressed on the gas and the engine revved but the van sat still, I was barely able to get it to the side of the road, the traffic was so bad everyone was trying to get to the game, we were so scared and almost hit several times. We called police for assistance but they never came, I finally found a number to Ford road side assistance, , they were good, and they got a good tow company, we sat and waited about an hour for help, but they came and towed it on a flat bed, we had it towed to spitzer Ford in cuyahgoa falls, they said it would be $2400 to replace the torque converter, they denied any ongoing problems, , but I had already searched it online and found that there is a massive problem with this torque converters just stopping, , I told spitzer service manager mike, we could not afford $2400 he said he could put a used rebuilt transmission in it for 500.00.. we took it to falls transmission for $915 and had the torque replaced, the owner said he is doing approximately 3 a week. They are coming in a lot..since then however, the van is shaking.. so I had to take it to be checked at G & R, they did a diagnostic and found nothing, so it has had to go back to the falls trans 3 times.. it shakes but he is not sure if it's the new torque, or something else. It is also out of align now.. tow bill from cleve $122 tow bill from Ford $50 torque converter $915.90 G & R diagnostic $69.23 total $1,157.13 and it still isn't running properly, , I had no car from October 2nd to October 6th, then I had to borrow a car again for the G&R check, , and 2 times after that when it had to go back to falls trans, , I am taking it back again 10/31/11 and leaving it at night for them to look at all day tues.

- Cuyahoga Falls, OH, USA

problem #45

May 122011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • miles
I was along the expressway about 55mph, then all unsudden the van made a jerk and begin to lose power and slowed pressed the gas pedal and it would not pick up speed so I managed to let it roll to the side of the road and stopped cut the motor off, and then cranked it back up put it into drive would not move then reverse would not move so cut it off and called for a tow truck.

- Talbotton, GA, USA

problem #44

Oct 182011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 57,500 miles
Driving in parking area at 25 mph when there was a sudden and unexpected loss of motive power due to an internal transmission failure. Had to tow van to transmission specialist garage as there were no apparent reasons for the failure. Waiting for diagnosis at this time. No previous notice or indications of pending failure were present.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #43

Nov 112009


  • 4,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. While the contact was driving approximately 25 mph the vehicle began to jerk and the transmission failed to respond. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic. The repairs performed on the vehicle consisted of the replacement of the torque converter, master air flow system and egr valve at different times. In addition, the belt tensioner was replaced. The failure occurred on three separate occasions. Most recently, the contact was advised that the transmission would need to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 40,000.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #42

Sep 172011


  • 120,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Ford Freestar. While driving approximately 40 mph the vehicle began to hesitate and exhibit a severe jerking motion. The vehicle was towed to an authorized dealer who stated the PCM needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired and within two days while driving in the rain the identical failure recurred; as a result water leaked into the PCM. The contact planned to take the vehicle back to the dealer to be repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 120,000.

- Miilton, DE, USA

problem #41

Oct 102011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 113,000 miles
Driving at 65 mph and auto starts coasting. Engine will rev, transmission has dis-engaged and will not re-engage. This is apparently a very common failure with this model. Transmission is out, no warning or noise; just gone. So many reported transmission failures, one has to wonder why there has been no recalls issued.

- Muskegon, Mi, MI, USA

problem #40

Sep 042011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 112,900 miles
As we drove at the 60 mph speed limit on I-64 in St. Charles county, mo, in the middle of five lanes, our torque converter failed. The engine raced, as the cruise control attempted to control the speed as we drove up a hill. We coasted through traffic to the side of the road. At this point, there is virtually no shoulder in the interstate highway, so we were barely out of the way of traffic. We were on the downside of a hill, and on a curve, so there was no way oncoming traffic could slow to avoid us. We were extremely fortunate not to be hit as we coasted through the traffic lanes to the right side of the highway, and moreso that traffic approaching us from behind was able to avoid us. We had the van towed to a Ford dealership, and they replaced the torque converter, at a cost of more than $1,500. Though the van is repaired and back in working order, it was repaired with a torque converter, that. To my understanding, has the same defect that the original had. Therefore, I am uneasy at the thought that the same thing could happen again at any time.

- Columbia, MO, USA

problem #39

Sep 242011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 85,625 miles
Driving my Freestar and it suddenly lost power. Engine still running, will not go in forward or reverse. Only neutral or park. This happened in a rural 2-lane road in Kentucky. No way to get on the shoulder of the road. After getting it towed to a dealer after they had closed for the weekend. Had to get a rental car. To get back home to Michigan. Monday the dealer called the torque converter had stripped it's splines cost $1379.85 for the torque converter, two seals, fluid, a screen and a trans insulator with labor. Rental car from enterprise $420.76 towing $95 gas for the extra trip to Kentucky and back $70 not only were we lucky we did not cause an accident by this failure. But we were able to get a tow truck within an hour. The vehicle had 85,625 miles on it. Not covered under warranty even though I had purchased and extended warranty. It only went to 72,000 miles.

- Trenton, MI, USA

problem #38

Oct 032011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
The minivan has been described by the dealership with transmission failure. The proposed remedy is to completely replace the transmission. We were returning home after driving approximately 1/2 hour at freeway speeds. After exiting the freeway we proceeded to an intersection and stopped at a red traffic signal. When the light turned green and the brake was released and gas pedal pressed, the engine accelerated but the car did not move. We tried all the gears and the car would not move although the engine appeared to be running normally. We feel fortunate that this failure happened at a stop and not at freeway speeds and that the vehicles behind us at the traffic signal did not plow into our rear end. Prior to this incident occurring we had intermittent occasions with the "check engine" light coming on, and then going off. We often were always able to clear the problem by tightening the gas cap while the car was running, which is a common cause for the light to turn on. The vehicle was purchased used from a Ford dealer about 17 months prior to the incident. During that time we noticed occasions of bursts of acceleration when driving at highway speeds. I spoke with the dealer who assured us this was normal. Since the incident, I have come to find out there are thousands of posts on the internet regarding identical problems on the 2005 Ford Freestar, yet no action has been taken. While we came out of this incident safely, I can see how it would cause tragic accidents to occur. In the end, we have an estimate of $4000 for the repair (1/3 of the price we paid for the vehicle after driving the car less than 6000 miles and having it serviced meticulously in the interim). Our household is struggling financially, and we do not have resources for this kind of repair. While we are happy to be uninjured, the economic impact of the flawed transmission is devastating.

- Southfield, MI, USA

problem #37

Sep 302011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 67,319 miles
My wife was driving (35 mph) our 3 kids to the doctor's office and the Freestar suddenly had the engine rev and lose all power to the drive train. She was very lucky to coast to the shoulder with the road being narrow, winding and relatively busy. This could have been a disaster if she had still been on the nearby 3 lane highway at rush hour. Towed to herb chamber Ford dealer and showed them the NHTSA action number for this investigation, they acted as if the printout was invisible. Charged me $209 to diagnose problem without even pulling the pan off, two options were to put in a rebuilt transmission for $3400, or rebuild for ~$2800. Went to an independent transmission specialist, confirmed that it was the torque converter and fixed for $2000. Very disturbed that such a major malfunction could happen at 67,319 miles, this could have caused a potentially fatal accident had it happened on one of our local highways.

- Westborough, MA, USA

problem #36

Apr 062010

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 56,000 miles
Was driving vehicle on highway speedometer started to move rapidly in highway traffic, car stopped abruptly almost have a mac truck slam into the rear, transmission wouldn't go into drive or reverse. Had transmission redone at authorized transmission, 1,800 dollars notified Ford corporate they blew me off stated my warranty expired. October 2011 same issue happened again just paid van off bought brand new in July of 2005 this car cost me enough for 6 years and no recall please help Ford could have cost me and my family our lives is it worth dyeing over a mistake. Jesus.....

- Romulus , MI, USA

problem #35

Sep 252011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 58,000 miles
The van would not shift into gears. It had to be towed to Ford dealership service center. They said transmission is burnt (they couldn't figure out what caused it) and need to replace the entire transmission which would cost $3300. The van has been serviced regularly at local Ford dealership oil changes, check ups etc.. and it has less than 60K miles. And now they are telling me I have to replace the entire transmission suddenly" I researched this issue online and there are countless people filing complaints and claims and law suits with this transmission issue. I can't believe Ford makes transmission that doesn't even last 60K miles and they want customers to pay for the replacement" there should have been a recall or some kind of warranty cover for this. It's a nonsense! never buying Ford ever again.

- Cherry Hill, NJ, USA

problem #34

Sep 232011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 57,120 miles
I was driving home from work at 11:00pm and turned the corner. Lost power, the RPM's went up and the van went nowhere. No warning it just went out. Had to have it towed the next morning to a dealer, said my transmission needed to be replaced costing $3500. Said nothing about problems with the Freestar torque converter. Read all the pages on complaints about the van, and had it towed to a transmission specialist. Now waiting for parts on backorder.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #33

Sep 212011

Freestar 6-cyl

  • 101,000 miles
The transmission fialed without warning on the highway as I was trying to accelerate the van.

- Brockton, MA, USA

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