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Old 10-11-2009, 10:05 PM   #29
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Yes Lyle, I agree with your comment. I would love to know if there is anyone who is actually towing the 09 Escape without issue. I might then have some hope of keeping a car I otherwise find very serviceable.
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Old 10-11-2009, 10:47 PM   #30
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The frustrating aspect of this transmission problem is that the transmission was designed jointly by Ford and GM. GM is using it in many of its vehicles and they are being towed with no problems. Clearly, Ford did something different. Initially Ford said it could not be towed 4 down. I even phoned them in late 2006 and debated that point as I'd read a tech article by a Ford engineer that said it could. Manual said NO. I tried to go up the chain at Ford but gave up and bought a Tahoe instead of a Lincoln MkX.

Now, I was thinking about an Escape but this problem has me reconsidering. For those not familiar with the origin of this tranny, here is an article that describes development.

Ford, GM Launch Joint 6-Speed Automatic

Don
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:12 AM   #31
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My documentation doesn't include the fluid level information. I also have never received any communication from Ford after the tranny replacement. The good news is that (partially due to this forum) we now know the rules. And . . . the Escape has survived about 10,000 miles of towing and 5,000 miles of driving without incident.
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Old 10-12-2009, 10:40 AM   #32
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I don't tow a Escape but I tow an '04 Explorer 4 x 4. Ford said I couldn't tow it because it was a V8. It's not the trans thats the problem but the TRANSFER CASE has to be put in neutral. Had to flash the EPROM to enable tow and it puts the transfer case in neutral. That's why I didn't buy an Escape. You can neutral a 4 x4 Ford but not an AWD Ford. Two wheel drive has no transfer case so you are spining the rear planitary and it doesn't get lubed unless front pump in trans is turning.

Ford don't have a clue, that's why you don't see many Explorers being towed but it can be done.
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Old 10-12-2009, 11:07 AM   #33
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Quote:
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I don't tow a Escape but I tow an '04 Explorer 4 x 4. Ford said I couldn't tow it because it was a V8. It's not the trans thats the problem but the TRANSFER CASE has to be put in neutral. Had to flash the EPROM to enable tow and it puts the transfer case in neutral. That's why I didn't buy an Escape. You can neutral a 4 x4 Ford but not an AWD Ford. Two wheel drive has no transfer case so you are spining the rear planitary and it doesn't get lubed unless front pump in trans is turning.

Ford don't have a clue, that's why you don't see many Explorers being towed but it can be done.
Interesting since I've seen Ford mention that you have to have the TC neutral activated and it can be done by the dealer.

AWD, even with no transfer case can be towed 4 down if the transmission is designed to allow it. The Ford/GM 6 speed was designed to allowed flat towing. Only problem at Ford was that the PR people didn't know what engineering was doing.
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:15 PM   #34
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It appears the Ford Company has succeeded in producing a massive circle of incompetence around the '09 Escape transmission failures. After being replaced I had to ask the repairing dealership for a copy of the TSB outlining the new procedures for flat towing. I decided to visit my selling dealership to seek further details and to find if other fixes were in the work by Ford. After a very disappointing interaction with a service advisor and the sales person I bought the car from I finally got an audience with the service manager. He had no idea what I was talking about until he looked up the TSB I gave him and then he attempted to contact the Ford Field Engineer for input of status of possible fixes that might be in the works. That interaction resulted in a message being left and a promise to call me when he got a return call. That call was now one week ago and still not a response. When I contact Ford Customer Service they refer me back to the selling dealer. This is turning into the worst experience I have had with Ford since purchasing my first new car from them in 1972. I really want to be assured I can flat tow the car they advertised as towable... I don't want to be down on the highway for weeks waiting on repair again. I don't want to buy more equipment to tow a car I bought to tow 4 flat. I don't want to lose my shirt changing to another car to overcome the problem. Frustration is building and my resolve to reach conclusion is deeply entrenched. Sure hate to lose faith in Ford, I have always liked the cars and the service I have experienced in the past. Can't say this event comes even close to those past experiences. Disappointed.
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Old 11-03-2009, 09:57 PM   #35
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Saturn vehicles were made especially for RV owners waaaaay back when flat towing first became popular. Now the company is no longer thanks to GM, however that didn't stop me from purchasing a used 2006 Saturn Vue with 25,000 miles on it. It tows flat 4 down without any difficulty and usually with my rear-view camera on to make sure it is still back there as you just don't feel the toad at all. This is the second Saturn I've owned. I had to give up the first one, a 1997 SW2 after over 160,000 odometer miles and lord knows how many towed miles. I am not sure what I will do when this one gives up the ghost. I have installed a fuse bypass switch instead of removing the fuse each time and I also go through the Saturn towing procedure lubricating the transmission each time before heading out. Only have to do that once a day, it doesn't get any simpler than that.

I am sorry that so many FORD owners are having problems. You just can't rely on and trust the people that are supposed to know, they are more intersted in making a sale than supplying correct information to the public. I certainly hope that FORD comes through and fixes the cause or at least replace the transmissions, however I would not trust what they say about it not happening again. If it happened once, it can happen again. IMHO.
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Old 11-04-2009, 11:18 AM   #36
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Dr4film, I too miss my Saturn. I had an '06 vue that served me well until a 2500 chevy decided to run flat out into my rear end at a red light in Miami. Totaled the car on the spot. I opted for the Ford because I have had such a good history with Fords since '72, and of course the question about the Saturn being around much longer. I had also installed a fuse disconnect switch and towed that car back and forth across the country without issue.

I really hope Ford finds a "real" fix and communicates it with the masses before too long. I like the car and really want to keep it. Just hard to accept that their customer service is being so evasive. Bummer.

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Old 11-05-2009, 08:28 AM   #37
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[QUOTE=Stillwater;550979]I have a 2009 Escape.
Mine came with a very comprehensive booklet describing the oil level and procedure for flat towing" QUOTE]

Lyle - can you tell us more about the booklet - title, publication number, etc. I'll be towing our '09 Escape in December for the first time.

I get mixed messages from our ford dealer about the oil level although our vehicle was produced after the date the factory changed to the correct dip stick to avoid overfilling.
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:01 AM   #38
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The separate booklet that was with my usual manuals.
The title is;
Ford Escape, Mercury Mariner and Mazda Tribute (non-Hybrid)
2009 Model Year

Recreational (Flat) towing and Transmission Fluid Level Supplement
There is a bar code on the back cover and a Ford Part number (9L8J 19A285 AA) under it. Also on the back cover is "June 2009 First Printing Supplement"

Even if you had your dipstick changed for the proper, longer one (which was the first excuse Ford used) you still need to lower the oil level to between the bottom of the hash marks and the low level mark. It is extremely important to have the oil at operating temp to determine the correct level. Do not take the word of the Ford mechanic that they reduced it to the proper level make sure yourself.
If your vehicle was produced after the date the supposed correct dipstick was installed the oil level still needs to be reduced to between the bottom of the hash marks and the lower mark for flat towing.
The reason you are getting mixed messages from your dealer is that for the most part they don't really know what is going on. In most cases I've read, forum members who have had problems are having to explain the recurring problems to the dealers and get them to look for the Service Bulletins. I also think the dealers don't really take it seriously or understand. Their attitude is that your covered by warranty so what's your problem
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:22 PM   #39
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I opted for the Ford because I have had such a good history with Fords since '72, and of course the question about the Saturn being around much longer.
John
Hi John44,

I wasn't deterred from purchasing another Saturn with the fact that Saturn was possibly going out of business because I know that by law, Saturn is required to supply parts for another 10 years after they close up shop and I truly hope that I will still have the 06 Saturn Vue for at least that long. I tend to keep vehicles for a long time providing that they are not lemons. Other non-original part manufacturers will also continue to make parts. The only possible problem would be if there was the unforeseen unavoidable accident that could happen such as what happen to you, whether body parts would still be readily available.

I guess if I was required to look for another brand of vehicle to flat tow, I would perform my due diligence and research it thoroughly looking at what the options are, then read, read, read, and talk to as many people as possible with experience in that particular type of vehicle, certainly that would NOT include a salesperson, and then make an informed decision about the vehicle I am going to flat tow.
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Old 11-06-2009, 07:18 AM   #40
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Lyle - thanks for the booklet info - what you say about the dealers is correct in my experience.
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Old 11-10-2009, 06:00 PM   #41
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600 miles from home no problem so far max trans temp has been 135-140 with ambient as high as 65 degrees
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Old 11-10-2009, 06:05 PM   #42
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Hi Lyle... sounds like so far so good. Keep us informed. We can all hope for the best and would really like to.

John
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