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The Ford Escape is one of the most popular and useful SUVs in the market. This small Ford crossover provides comfortable seating, useful cargo space, and smooth driving on the road. If you think this Ford compact SUV is what you want to drive, you’ll want to know the most common Ford Escape problems and how they could impact your driving experience.

Most common Ford Escape problems

Blue 2022 Ford Escape in a Parking Garage
2022 Ford Escape | Ford

Drivers have enjoyed the steadfast driving manners and presence of the Ford Escape for years. During that time, RepairPal has collected data to give us the most common Ford Escape problems owners face with this SUV. Here are the three top issues:

  • Ignition misfires – reported by 435 owners
  • Check engine light and hesitation or stumbling while driving – reported by 387 owners
  • Internal transfer case problems on the 4WD models – reported by 217 owners

Let’s dig in and see what owners facing these issues must do to correct the problems.

What caused ignition misfires in this Ford compact SUV?

Typically, ignition misfires in the Ford Escape occur because of a faulty ignition coil. This item tends to go bad after an average of 129,000 miles and costs between $99 and $128 to replace. Replacing the ignition coil as soon as the problem is detected is important in preventing further damage to the engine.

What causes the Ford Escape engine to hesitate, stumble, or lose power?

The second most common of the Ford Escape problems is engine hesitation. This occurs while driving, which can be scary while out on the road. In the most severe cases, the EGR valve is damaged and must be replaced. This repair generally costs $151-$178.

What should you do if you hear noises from the 4WD transfer case?

The 4WD transfer case of some Ford Escape models is notoriously troublesome, becoming damaged from regular use. When the sound begins, it could sound like a bearing howling but it can turn into a clicking noise at higher speeds. Changing the transfer case fluid can help, but most owners reporting this problem have had to replace the entire unit. This problem generally appears after 125,000 miles of driving with regular use of the 4WD system.

Is the Ford Escape a reliable compact SUV?

2020 Ford Escape in Orange Posed on a Grassy Lawn
2020 Ford Escape | Ford

The Ford Escape receives a reliability score of 4.0 out of 5.0 from RepairPal. This places the Escape 16th out of 24 models for the compact SUV class. This ranking is based on three factors which are:

  • Cost – The Ford Escape’s average annual repair and maintenance costs are $600 compared to $521 for compact SUVs.
  • Frequency – Escape owners bring their vehicles to the repair shop for unscheduled repairs 0.31 times per year compared to 0.3 for the class.
  • Severity – The probability of severe repairs for the Ford Escape is 11% compared to 11% for compact SUVs.

Is the 2023 Ford Escape a good compact SUV?

2023 Ford Escape on a Rooftop Parking Deck
2023 Ford Escape | Ford

Ford redesigned the Escape for the 2023 model year, giving us a new generation for this compact SUV. U. S. News & World Report tells us this new model has two hybrid engines, a sporty ST-Line trim, and plenty of style. Ford added new advanced technology to the mix to make the Escape safer than before. This new 2023 Ford Escape should offer a driving range of 400 miles when consumers opt for the hybrid or PHEV powertrains.


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