With the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration uploading several manufacturer communications in a searchable database on its website, consumers can research any manufacturer or car model for documents that reveal common problems.
Before that, consumers had to resort to more cumbersome means of figuring out common problems with lineups from a particular manufacturer. This sometimes entailed hunting down technical service bulletins (TSBs) and other documents.
Johnny Dekock, writer for Hot Cars, found 14 common problems with Ford cars, most of which could negatively affect safety.
Of those 14, we narrowed it down to the top five most concerning and bizarre vehicle defects found in Ford vehicles.
1. Transmission issues – Some Ford cars could move on their own, even if their keys are removed. In these cars, unseated shift cable locking clips allow the transmissions to shift out of gear. A recall of some Ford F-150 pickups and Expedition SUVs was issued and enacted in 2018.
2. Jerking vehicles – Some Ford vehicles can start randomly jerking after the drivers change gears or press the brakes or gas pedals too quickly. Sometimes, the jerking is caused by fuel pump problems or engine vacuum leaks. The vehicle may even start shaking, reminiscent of the Chevy shake problem found in some GMC vehicles.
3. Carbon monoxide – This poisonous gas would leak into some Ford vehicles when the engine was running, which was dangerous for drivers who were unable to detect the gas by smell. This problem was most common in the Ford Explorer.
4. Engine problems – In 2013–2016 Ford Taurus vehicles, a defective fuel pump would cause the cars to stall or struggle to start the engine. Other vehicles, such as the 2013–2014 Ford Compact Fiesta, faced even more frightening problems including car fires. These fires were caused by engine overheating due to poor circulation of coolant. Not only would the engine overheat, but cracks would also appear in the cylinder head.
5. Shattering Windows – The windows of some Ford vehicles could shatter when temperatures were too low. This was especially frightening when the owners drove the vehicles. Ford Escapes and Ford Mercy Mariners were the most prone to this problem.