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What permanent fixes has Ford come up with for dead battery pblm


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14 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   theseeleys

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Posted 10 November 2014 - 09:41 AM

New member here.  Just posted 1st msg yesterday, after our 2013 CMax battery failed AGAIN, for the 4th time in 11 months!  It's back in the shop where, so far, all they've come up with is fiddling with reprogramming something or replacing the battery every time I have the problem!  Anyone who thinks that's a permanent solution is nuts!

 

I've read a lot of msgs here today about this pblm.  It's some help to know I'm not alone.  (But it's not a lot of help at all to read msgs from those of you lucky enough NOT to have the problem!  At times, when I read some of those msgs, I think I hear a little nyahh nyahh nyahh in the background.) I am quite certain our problem is NOT operator error! We've gone over that enough that we are both certain we have not caused these failures by leaving something on, leaving a door ajar overnight, etc.

 

But what does intrigue me is the msgs that seem to suggest Ford has come up with a permanent fix. They certainly should have, by now!  If so, I don't know what it is.  Can someone please help me out here?  I'll be talking to our local dealer's service mgr and hopefully also upper mgmt today or tomorrow, and I'd like all the ammunition I can muster before I go into battle with them!

 

Thx.









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#2 OFFLINE   Plus 3 Golfer

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Posted 10 November 2014 - 10:18 AM

..

 

But what does intrigue me is the msgs that seem to suggest Ford has come up with a permanent fix. They certainly should have, by now!  If so, I don't know what it is.  Can someone please help me out here?  I'll be talking to our local dealer's service mgr and hopefully also upper mgmt today or tomorrow, and I'd like all the ammunition I can muster before I go into battle with them!

 

Thx.

The short answer is I am not aware that Ford has found a "permanent fix(es)" for the dead battery issue.  Ford has tried a few software update but AFAIK, owners have had issues after the updates.  Other "fixes" IIRC were to replace connectors / wiring, 12 V battery, electric coolant pump and likely other hardware that may have put a parasitic load on the 12 V battery or kept electronic modules from going to "sleep".   

 

Others that have had battery issues can tell you what the Technical Bulletins and software updates are that relate to the dead battery issue.

 

One other point, have you opened a case with Ford?  IMO, the battle is with Ford, not the dealer.  The dealers are likely going to be little help (unless you simply want to trade for another Ford product). I'd keep on "friendly" terms with the dealer.  I'd want the dealer to assure you that they've applied all the TBs and updates on the issue and acknowledge that they haven't fixed (can't fix) the issue despite their best effort AND help from Ford.



#3 OFFLINE   theseeleys

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Posted 10 November 2014 - 01:26 PM

Good advice!  Thx. Certainly about keeping on good terms with my dealer.  We're headed there in a while so this advice was quite timely!  And knowing me, quite apropos also!

 

How do I search by VIN for what TSBs the dealer may already have done?  I want to know that independently before I ask the dealer.  I have the records of 2 of the 3 previous fix attempts (can't find one of them, although I suspect it's in our house somewhere).



#4 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 10 November 2014 - 06:02 PM

New member here.  Just posted 1st msg yesterday, after our 2013 CMax battery failed AGAIN, for the 4th time in 11 months!  It's back in the shop where, so far, all they've come up with is fiddling with reprogramming something or replacing the battery every time I have the problem!  Anyone who thinks that's a permanent solution is nuts!

 

I've read a lot of msgs here today about this pblm.  It's some help to know I'm not alone.  (But it's not a lot of help at all to read msgs from those of you lucky enough NOT to have the problem!  At times, when I read some of those msgs, I think I hear a little nyahh nyahh nyahh in the background.) I am quite certain our problem is NOT operator error! We've gone over that enough that we are both certain we have not caused these failures by leaving something on, leaving a door ajar overnight, etc.

 

But what does intrigue me is the msgs that seem to suggest Ford has come up with a permanent fix. They certainly should have, by now!  If so, I don't know what it is.  Can someone please help me out here?  I'll be talking to our local dealer's service mgr and hopefully also upper mgmt today or tomorrow, and I'd like all the ammunition I can muster before I go into battle with them!

 

Thx.

You could read the Thread "Possible solution for dead battery problem" and fix the problem yourself. IMO :)

 

Paul



#5 OFFLINE   fbov

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 12:00 PM

...How do I search by VIN for what TSBs the dealer may already have done? 

http://www.etis.ford.com/

 

Select "Vehicle" in the top line menu, and enter your VIN. Look on the left under "Outstanding field service actions."

 

Frank



#6 OFFLINE   kaptnk228

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Posted 12 November 2014 - 12:08 PM

Our battery problem is solved for now:  

 

Cause:

 

1. Failed dc/dc charger that floats 14.3-5 Volts on battery when car is started.

2. The culprit for the battery drain was a high amp fuse!!  It caused the charging voltage to drop to 13.5 V (no alarm but there should be one) and to drain battery when car is off

3.  No battery low or charging system alarms to tell you.

 

As soon as it failed it told the dealer not to just replace the battery but figure out what caused it to drain.  The fuse was the difficult one.  An infrared camera might have picked up the hot element.  I told them to follow the current to the component that was draining the battery.  It took 2 weeks but we are working again and enjoying our C-Max.

 

Ford still have to fix the NO ALARM problem.  Until that is fixed we will run a volt meter in the 12 V socket to monitor the battery/charging system.  This should be part of the standard instrumentation ofthe car.

 

You may have another cause but I suspect this fuse problem is causing a lot of batteries to fail.

 

Update: 13 Dec 2014 Car has been working great.  No new issues.  Got our voltage meter to plug into the 12 V socket.  You can monitor it via the ETM but that is a pain.  voltage while operating 14.3-15.0 V.  What out for that 13.5 V which in our case was the defective fuse.  Don't believe the battery voltage of 12.2 V when car is off.

 

Updated 17 Jan 2014:  Runs great.  good mileage even in winter.  Not great mileage above 65 mph.  Too bad they didn't put the Mazda Sky engine 2 L or so in it with 14:1 compression ratio.  Then might see 50/50+ mpg.  We can dream.  Tests with the SKY engine in another Hybrid showed outstanding results.

 

retired P.Eng.


Edited by kaptnk228, 17 January 2015 - 10:02 AM.

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#7 OFFLINE   jimdel13

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Posted 14 December 2014 - 06:57 PM

I am considering purchasing of a "reaquired" 2013 Hybrid from a dealer.  The battery issue is why Ford had to buy it back (lemon law).  The dealer salesman said that the battery was never dead but that the computer "sensed" it was and did not allow the battery to crank the motor. He says Ford reprogrammed the car and it is declared fine.  Being sold with 12k/12 month warranty.  I am not sure that answer makes sense after reading all the comments and struggles of owners with the battery problem.  Any suggestions?



#8 OFFLINE   Kelleytoons

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Posted 14 December 2014 - 07:29 PM

Yeah, as I mentioned in the other thread you posted, make sure the dealer gives you a good price -- a good price can overcome a LOT of issues.  Any car bought back under the lemon law ought to have at least 2-4K knocked off the Kelly Blue Book price or the dealer isn't trying very hard.

 

If the dealer has a problem with your offer then walk away, making sure he has your phone number so that he can call you back when he gets desperate to sell (and he will :>).

 

If the problem is truly fixed then it ought to show up in that year you have it, so the extra cash you have will be money in your pocket.


Edited by Kelleytoons, 14 December 2014 - 07:30 PM.


#9 OFFLINE   jimdel13

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Posted 14 December 2014 - 10:14 PM

The price is $4 k below BB.  I am just feeling uncertain that the problem is truly fixed...



#10 OFFLINE   obob

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Posted 14 December 2014 - 11:34 PM

The price is $4 k below BB.  I am just feeling uncertain that the problem is truly fixed...

 

I would also check out some prices on cars.com, new and used for comparison.



#11 OFFLINE   Kelleytoons

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Posted 15 December 2014 - 06:33 AM

The price is $4 k below BB.  I am just feeling uncertain that the problem is truly fixed...

 

Not according to the Kelley Blue Book I checked -- did the dealer tell you this or did you look it up yourself?

 

I found a price of $13K on a 10K mileage good condition C-Max SE 2013.  Unless he's offering it to you at 9K he's a liar.  (And if that is the case I would *definitely* not make a deal with that guy).


Edited by Kelleytoons, 15 December 2014 - 06:34 AM.


#12 OFFLINE   kostby

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Posted 15 December 2014 - 02:39 PM

 

I am considering purchasing of a "reaquired" 2013 Hybrid from a dealer.  The battery issue is why Ford had to buy it back (lemon law).  The dealer salesman said that the battery was never dead but that the computer "sensed" it was and did not allow the battery to crank the motor. He says Ford reprogrammed the car and it is declared fine.  Being sold with 12k/12 month warranty.  I am not sure that answer makes sense after reading all the comments and struggles of owners with the battery problem.  Any suggestions?

 

Two words: Caveat Emptor: "Let the buyer beware"

 

If what follows seems like way too much work just to buy a used car, then this is probably not the right C-MAX for you:

  1. Become familiar with the New York lemon law for both new and used cars. Be certain you fully understand what happened in order for this vehicle to be repurchased under the new car Lemon Law. http://www.dmv.org/n...w-Car-Lemon-Law
  2. Insist on full written dealership documentation for every service visit including every attempt to repair this vehicle before the Lemon Law repurchase, including dated repair orders, diagnostic trouble codes observed, recalls applied, technical service bulletins applied, any calls to Ford corporate for assistance and their responses, and every step taken to repair each defect.
  3. Learn what additional used car Lemon Law rights you have, and the specific legal limits on vehicle mileage and duration at the time of purchase for ANY used car from a used-car dealer in the state of New York. http://www.dmv.org/n...d-Car-Lemon-Law
  4. Make sure every salesperson promise and dealership promise is explicitly in writing and included as part of the sales contract. If there's anything you don't understand, ask questions. If you feel you need legal advice, ask an attorney BEFORE making a purchase decision!

Finally:

The Finance and Insurance office at the dealership is the place you traditionally go after you THINK you've agreed buy the vehicle for a "firm" out-the-door price. The F&I office is the place where most dealerships make most of their profit on car sales -- selling you additional high-profit-margin services, extended warranties, and accessories.


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#13 OFFLINE   HotPotato

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Posted 20 December 2014 - 12:50 PM

I've only ever had two no-starts, so hard to say if it was a parasitic load over time or a watery connector or just not closing a door all the way.

 

Both times, the dealer load-tested and replaced the battery, and I have zero confidence they actually looked into the TSBs. I suppose if the battery itself has a yearlong warranty then we could play this game forever at little cost to me, but I'd rather they try to locate whatever's causing the battery to discharge severely enough to fail the test and warrant replacement. The second time, the dealer implied it's because I'd added a small subwoofer...but they provided zero evidence for that, and in any case the sub wasn't installed when the battery failed the first time.

 

Dealer laziness aside, I don't get why Ford didn't build in some sort of battery protection--when battery gets to level X, power to everything is killed unless the key is turned, to prevent battery damage. Or just use a bigger battery so even if there is a parasitic draw, there's enough battery capacity that nobody will notice it and damage won't occur--as I'm certain is the case in many ordinary cars.

 

Edit: just did a little reading, and it seems 12V batteries lasting only 2 years in hybrids of any make is not uncommon, so I suppose significant wear in one year is not such a shock. Still, it just suggests all hybrid makes ought to consider using a 12V battery closer to standard size.


Edited by HotPotato, 20 December 2014 - 01:11 PM.


#14 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 20 December 2014 - 04:18 PM

HotPotato "Or just use a bigger battery so even if there is a parasitic draw, there's enough battery capacity that nobody will notice it and damage won't occur--as I'm certain is the case in many ordinary cars."  Did you read my" Possible 12v Dead Battery solution" of adding another smaller 12v batt. in the back in the storage compartment? It would be interesting to see if this made a difference. :)

 

Paul



#15 OFFLINE   rvc

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Posted 06 January 2015 - 01:58 AM

I puchased my 2013 C Max in December 2012. I took it on a trip up the CA coast...thrilling right?
At a camp ground in Big Sur was the 1st of 7 or 8 dead battery episodes. LONG story short...the fix finally was some sort of module harness connection getting wet and shorting out. That was back in August 2014.They somehow waterproofed the connection I suppose. Since then..no dead battery episode.

Edited by rvc, 06 January 2015 - 02:06 AM.

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