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Old 07-22-2008, 15:59   #1 (permalink)
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2006 Escape rear differential shreads to pieces

NEWER ESCAPE OWNERS: CHECK YOUR REAR DIFF!

Noticed excessive noise coming from rear of my wife's Escape, especially under load conditions (on gas or breaking vs. coasting). Pulled rear diff leveling plug out for a look and found ground up metal shavings. Took it into the dealer and it needs a whole new rear differential.
According to FORD, the warranty on rear diffs is only 3/36. And, even though it was properly full of fluid, and showed no signs of water penetration (clear, not white or foamy) they are refusing to provide any warranty assistance. Rear differentials should not self destruct on 2 year old Escapes, regardless of 59,000 miles on the odometer. It's a part that should NEVER break, but did. It clearly had a flaulty part installed in the factory or was put together wrong. Don't know how they can ignore that FACT. The excuse FORD is sticking to is 1) it's out of warranty (mileage), 2) no recalls or formal assistance programs for escape rear diffs, and 3) that since I've never had the vehicle in the dealer for service, ever, (I do all my own service, oil, filters, belts, etc) that they have no history with with vehicle and will provide no assistance. I am a lifelong ford owner, as is all of my family, but I think after this incident, this will sadly be our last Ford. Any comments or advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 08-22-2008, 06:53   #2 (permalink)
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Re: 2006 Escape rear differential shreads to pieces

I wouldn't cancel out on Ford due to one diff problem. Be sure to check your maintenance schedule in the manual, as the rear diff fluid has to be changed at regular intervals. Even when using synthetic fluid it's wise to change it out every 30-40K. I'm not sure how the rear diff's are built in the Escapes, but if they have a C-clip system then you have to keep a close watch on the differential as the C-clips aren't known for reliability. It's an open differential and shouldn't be too costly to replace. Keeping tires properly inflated also reduces pressure on any side of the axle and will greatly reduce the risk of differential failure. On the bright side, you could look into upgrading it to a locking system if they have one available for the Escape - TEN times better traction in the white stuff!!

Dealers are owned by independent principals and cannot speak for Ford on how it produces the vehicles that they sell. I'd contact Ford directly about the problem and do an in-depth search online for any Technical Service Bulletins that might have arose over the years. Dealers only contact owners about TSB's if they're safety related.
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