Ford Escape Problems

No car is perfect, but we've gathered everything relating to the Ford Escape reliability here to help you decide if it's a smart buy.

How do I know if it's worth replacing the transmission in my 2008 Ford Escape?

Answered by CarsGuide 9 Sep 2021

This is a bit of a perennial question when it comes to older second-hand cars that suddenly need expensive repairs. On current values, your Escape is probably worth almost exactly the same as the new transmission will cost you. The problem is that even if you do have the new transmission fitted, you won’t have doubled the value of the car. In fact, you’ll have done nothing for its resale value compared with any other working Escape. And right now, your Escape with a broken transmission is worth – roughly - $300 which is what a scrap merchant will pay for it to be crushed and turned into microwave ovens.

However, balancing all that is the question of, if you do scrap the car, how much will you need to spend to get into something that will be reliable and safe? And the answer to that is probably more than $5000. At this point, you also need to assess the condition of the rest of your car. At 170,000km on the clock, it could well be ready for maintenance in other expensive areas.

But assuming the rest of your car is in good condition and still works properly, here’s another option: Rather than a brand-new transmission, why not track down a good, second-hand unit from a vehicle recycler. Specialist recyclers have a range of components like these, and you should be able to find one that’s been tested and perhaps even carries a short warranty. It will still cost money to buy the transmission and have it fitted, but it shouldn’t be anything like $5000 and if it keeps your car on the road for another few years, then it’s recycling at its best. The greenest car is the one that’s already been built.

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Should I buy a plug-in hybrid or an electric car?

Answered by CarsGuide 29 Feb 2020

The Ford Escape plug-in should be an interesting vehicle when it arrives, with 165kW of power and something like a 50km electric-only range. It will be here sometime this year, but the exact timing is still a trade secret.

The Toyota RAV4, meanwhile, isn’t a plug-in hybrid, so it can’t be recharged form your home solar panels (which the plug-in Escape could be). Frankly, if you’re making four times the power your household needs with your solar array, you’re in the pound seats for owning a plug-in hybrid which could put that excess electricity generation to very good use. That’s especially true if most of your driving is around town within a 20km radius or so of home-base.

That said, the new RAV4 Hybrid is gaining rave reviews as well as recording very sharp real-world fuel-economy figures. But a plug-in hybrid in a household with excess solar capacity could almost be run for free.

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Ford Escape: replacement key cost

Answered by CarsGuide 9 May 2019
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Ford Escape 2006: Can sudden acceleration damage the alternator?

Answered by CarsGuide 17 Aug 2018

I don’t believe so.

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Ford Escape 2018: Is it good in the snow?

Answered by CarsGuide 3 Aug 2018

The Ford Escape's prowess would be limited in snowy conditions due to its platform as a "soft-roader" limiting grip and traction. It would be adviseable to fit snow chains.

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Changing oil on a Ford Escape

Answered by CarsGuide 25 Jul 2018

Take it to a Ford dealer or qualified mechanic. Some Ford models need to have the oil drained and refilled within 10 minutes or they will suffer low oil pressure when trying to restart. It isn't worth risking your engine to save a few dollars by servicing it yourself.

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How do you remove a radio from a Ford Escape?

Answered by CarsGuide 25 Jul 2018

Pop the top cover above the screen up, then remove the two fasteners holding the screen to the dashboard. Using a trim removal tool lever out the trim panel holding the vents beside the screen, working down around the base of the touchscreen unit. Unplug the wiring from this piece and set it aside. Remove the four fasteners holding the unit to the dash structure. The screen can then be lifted forward, out and unplugged.

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Ford Escape 2018: How do you open the hood?

Answered by CarsGuide 20 Jul 2018

Open the driver's door and look on the side of the dashboard near the door hinges. There should be a bonnet release lever. Pull that and then walk to the front of the car. Stand in front of the middle of the bonnet and lift the bonnet panel while pulling the secondary catch lever, which is near the middle of the Escape, mounted on the radiator top panel to the left of the middle. Hold that lever while lifting the bonnet and it will open up.

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Ford Escape 2018: How to lift it and how much does it weigh?

Answered by CarsGuide 13 Jul 2018

The standard scissor jack lives under a lift-up panel in the cargo area flooring. If using this to lift the Ford Escape you should lock it in the factory jacking point, located approximately 30cm behind the front wheels or approximately 30cm in front of the rear wheels, as marked in the owner's manual. Laying on the ground you should be able to see a small arrow marked on the vehicle's sills pointing inwards, which is the factory jacking point. Locate the scissor jack on the vehicle's pinch weld (the thin metal strip running along the car under the sill) at the jacking point, ensuring the jack is positioned on flat, stable ground, and the handbrake is on. For floor jacks, otherwise known as trolley jacks, you should position the jack under the centre of the front or rear suspension cradles, lifting from the approved factory lift point as listed in the owner's manual. Ford Escape models weigh between 1670kg (two-wheel drive) and 1750kg (all-wheel drive) depending of the model and trim.

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Ford Escape 2018: How do you program the key fob remote?

Answered by CarsGuide 6 Jul 2018

Due to modern security systems you will need to take the car to your Ford dealer and have them program the new key for you, as it is coded to your car's ECU. You cannot do this at home as dealerships have this software.

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