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Car pulls to one side

2011 Ford Taurus with 4000 miles. Car, at times, will pull to one side when brakes applied. Dealer could find nothing wrong first time(no cost). Second time they found that the “rear pads stuck in brackets on both sides. removed calipers brackets and pads and did full clean and reassembled”.(cost $150). Third time road test found “no pull”. “checked on ramp, all brakes seem fine, all free and moving properly. no problem found.”(cost $104). Road test with technician found slight vibration in steering wheel when braking but no pull. Technician says an uneven or slanting street could cause car to pull. Never heard of this before (my other car is fine on the same roads & streets). Is this a possibility as a cause of my problem?

Unless that “slanting street” is a NASCAR course, I doubt it causes that much pull to where you notice it.
You had to pay to have them not fix it, a car that’s practically new?

If I had to guess, it may be a bad caliper.

I too do not understand why you are being charged for something that should come under warrantee. Did the technician who gave you the “slanting road” theory check the front end alignment? Those two go hand in hand.

Like the others, I wonder why you’re being charged. I also wonder why a car that new would have sticky calipers.

Check your owner’s manual for a resoliution protocol. Follow that, and save all your copies of the shop orders. I have no reason to suspect that they’re not doing their best, but of the problem continues unresolved you may want to look into your state’s lemon laws.

It is possible the crown of the road can cause a car to pull to the right, the crown is a slope, higher in the middle and lower on the side to aid in rainwater not staying on the road surface. Some cars are much more sensitive than others. It could be a matter of finding an alignment guy that will do an alignment to center of specs rather than within specs. 4k miles should be under warranty, The when using brakes indicates a brake problem.

“slight vibration in steering wheel when braking” doesn’t sound like no problem.
Your rotors could be warped. Have them check runout.
You could have a bad caliper or hose
Try to get your money back for those unsuccessful repairs.
Then consider finding another dealer.
Anyone who considers a “slight vibration in steering wheel when braking” on a 2011 car with 4000 miles and under warranty may need more training and/or attitude adjustment.

I parked my car(Dec 9, 2012) and waited 26 days for a Ford Rep to contact me, which he did today. Rep said the dealership has to discover(by diagnostic testing, trial & error, etc) what is causing the problem and warranty doesn’t cover that. His advice was to keep talking with the dealer(and paying) or get a second opinion from another Ford dealership(and still pay) until problem is discovered and then warranty will take over, providing of course, if it’s covered.
I asked if I kept paying until the problem was solved would Ford reimburse my expenses - no they would not be able to do that. Asked about the arbitration option but he never heard of it. Soooooo frustrating…I’m at a loss!!!

How Long Have You Owned The Car ?
Have You Spoken With Your Salesperson ? Since Any Good Salesperson Is Trying To build A Customer Base They Should Try And Help You.

Failing to get a resolution with the salesperson’s help, I’d next contact the dealership owner/principal and have a face to face meeting.

Can you demonstrate the brake pull to somebody, either with you driving or with them driving ?
How often does it pull ? Do you know any conditions which problem make the problem surface ?
Could it be when the car is first driven or when driven many miles or when the brakes are used quite a bit, etcetera ?

I’d be tempted to use an infrared non-contact thermometer and a little braking activity to help locate one hotter or colder (out of 4) brake rotor to see if that helps. I’ve used mine before for just such a problem. If the problem could be isolated and verified that would get things rolling.


I think an infrared thermometer is a great idea. You can ick one up at any parts store, they’re cheap, and super easy to use. You just point the laser dot at the spot you want to measure and it’ll read the temperature. One hot hub will be a definite indication of something dragging.

However I noticed they haven’t checked the alignment. And that’s another good possibility. Poor alignment can cause a vehiclle to pull to one side. I strongly recommend that you suggest a four wheel alignment.

I’m not “buying” the road crown theory. If they stick to that claim, have them show you by going on a test drive with another like car.

@Chevy-at-heart there is no reason why you should pay one red cent to diagnose any problems on your car, because it has warranty and only 4000 miles.
Keep hounding them
Call them every day
Keep records of when you called, who you talked to, if you left a message, if they responded, etc.
Keep escalating it
Keep going higher up
Eventually some big shot is going to be annoyed that you’re calling him and will instruct the dealership to fix your car so that he doesn’t hear about it anymore.

That Ford Rep is most likely giving you the run-around. Paying to diagnose a brake complaint on a 4000 mile car under warranty is unheard of.
He sounds like a corporate POS
It’s an insult

You may have to send certified mail to somebody really high up
A few years ago I had a new kitchen put in
The installers really botched the job
I immediately sent a letter via certified mail to the "home office"
That got somebody’s attention and they promptly called me
They sent different installers and redid the job the correct way.

took my case to arbitration…won it…Ford was ordered to buy the vehicle back and refund my expenses…which they did. No more Ford vehicles!

Congrats. Every once in a while, the little guy wins. And, after the way they treated you, I don’t blame you to avoid Ford from now on.

I read the latest Consumer Reports and It shows Ford and Lincoln at the bottom in reliability. It was only a few years ago they were ranked among the best US cars. I thinh a huge increase in sales, hybrids and Ecoboost engines are the reason.

Outstanding ! A victory for the consumer ! Good job. But, I wouldn’t blame Ford cars in general for a bad dealership and rep experience. Other cars new can have similar problems. If they had stood by you and resolved it quickly for free, you could still be a Ford owner. It’s too bad you were treated this way…but you did good.

“I read the latest Consumer Reports and It shows Ford and Lincoln at the bottom in reliability”

The vast majority of the problems resulting in that low rating were related to Ford & Lincoln’s crappy, sometimes non-functional, touch screen system. If you were to look exclusively at things like engines, transmissions, and other mechanical systems, Fords have pretty much retained their reliability (with the exception of the dual-clutch transmissions on their smaller cars).

Mostly, it is dissatisfaction with the My Ford/My Lincoln touch-screen system that resulted in those poor reliability ratings.

I’ve heard the same thing, that the Ford touch screen display is bothering the owners to the max. Seems odd, what with the mechanical complexity of a car these days, the touch screen is the weak point. The Ford management maybe needs to do a little re-think on their engineering design and test priorities maybe. Who cares about the touch screen? We customers as first priority want a car that gets us where we are going, safely and reliably, and is price competitive. Nicely styled? Ok, we’ll pay a little more for that. But touch screens? Way down the list.

Thanks for the feedback. We usually don’t hear about the resolution of the problem.


Congratulations . . . you are the man!

May I ask how long the entire process took?

It’s always nice to hear that hard work and persistence pays off