We bought a new 2015 Ford Expedition EL to tow our 27-foot Airstream travel trailer in anticipation of a vacation in Atlantic Canada. The salesman assured us that if we had any problems a Canadian Ford dealer would be able to assist us. After less than a month of ownership and with under 4000 miles on the vehicle, it had a rear axle failure and broke down 1100 miles and a 7 hour ferry ride from home with the Airstream in tow. A seal on the axle failed, the lubricating fluid leaked out, and the differential was damaged. The Newfoundland dealer reported that there are no parts available to fix it (all parts are designated for factory use in new vehicles) and that it would be 3 weeks before they could even obtain the part to repair it.
In essence, Ford Canada Customer Service told me that if that repair took 3-5 weeks, left me stranded 1100 miles from home, ruined my vacation, I missed several weeks of work, and my trailer was stuck by the side of the road because the rental sedan they gave me surely does not tow it, that’s Ford Tough.
I tried contacting my the Connecticut dealer who told me he had spoken to senior staff at Ford and that the factory would send the part and the repair would be completed in 10 days. But when I followed up to confirm the timeline, it turned out no part had been ordered and nothing had been done in the last 6 days. Customer service, the selling dealer, and the repairing dealer all seem to feel it is the other’s responsibility to solve the problem.
Can Ford really sell new vehicles while making no parts available for repairing customers vehicles? Is there no required timeliness on a warranty repair? When customers buy trucks and other vehicles intended to tow trailers and perform work and the vehicle fails, are they also given a sedan in exchange and how to the cope with that?
Unfortunately, this kind of this can and does happen. Parts do end up on backorder; which means a new part could take a day, a week, a month, or in some cases an infinity to come up with.
If the dealer has made a legitimate effort to order the part then the delay will be on the part of FOMOCO and/or their supplier .
Since this is a new 2015 model what they should do in the name of customer service is eat a little of the cost and provide you with an identical 2015 truck.
Or have Ford authorize the removal of a rear axle from another new unit, send you on your way, and then install the replacement axle (when it arrives) into the now disabled new unit.
Backordered parts can be a nasty aggravation to deal with and I sympathize with you. As a mechanic at dealers I’ve been frustrated with that scenario also. Even Fiat of all people allowed us to cannibalize a couple of new Fiats once to keep others on the road.
Surely Ford Motor Company is better than Fiat…
This is indeed a frustrating conundrum. First question, are you certain your Expedition as equipped is rated to tow that big of load? Presuming it is … hmm …
Here’s what I’ thinking. You bought the vehicle new from Ford right? So they should be willing to help you as best they can. They owe you that, for your customer loyalty. Ford can’t be responsible for the consequences of all parts failures that happen, vehicles have a lot of moving parts, but in this case I think they do have some responsibilities here … since the vehicle is so new.
Ask Ford to send a tow truck out and tow your Airstream to a safe, locked, well lit and guarded storage facility.
Ask them to give you a loaner car to continue your vacation, albeit without the trailer. Or if they won’t do that – technically they aren’t required to probably – at least make local arrangements for you to rent a car. You can debate with them who pays for this rental later, after your trailer-less holiday in the great north. You can also debate with them – later – who pays for the hotels and motels.
You need a specific part, but they don’t have any. Or if the do have any, it is to meet their commitments for making new vehicles for their dealerships, not for you. I don’t see you can do much about that. They didn’t anticipate they’d need to be stocking new differential parts this early apparently. If they don’t have the part, suggest simply to accept this as a fact.
Instead, ask if there are any non-OEM (i.e. aftermarket parts) available that will fit? If so, they could install those in the interim, until the OEM parts are available. There’s a magazine called Peterson’s Four Wheel Drive or something like that, and there are advertisers in there that sell aftermarket differential parts. The kind used for big loads. Maybe one of those venders could supply something to get by until the OEM parts come in.
Differential parts are extremely complicated, and so this is a Hail-Mary pass, but ask if it is possible a local machine shop could fix the damaged parts enough to get you to the end of your vacation.
And keep the dealership where you purchased your truck informed of everything that is going on, and ask they give you a single contact person to deal with.
Best of luck.
We had a 15 kia rear ended Nov 2915, had to wait till Jan when parts were available.a new sign of customer no service, Thanks to Clark Howard for that term.
A thought . . .
Talk to Ford again and ask to escalate the matter. That means it goes up to a higher level, and somebody “more important” will be overseeing it
If they won’t do it, ask for that person’s name
That means ask for the person’s name that said “No, we won’t do it.”
And even if they do say yes, keep calling back, to make sure they’re doing something, versus sitting on their behinds, and/or passing the buck, so to speak
Keep records of who you talked to, when, where, etc.
As you said, they haven’t been trying very hard, and it’s time to light a fire under their . . .
Look into lemon law rules in your area, most have a maximum number of days the vehicle can be in the shop. If you think you will go past that might want to talk to a lemon law attorney, there may be ways to recover your losses or expedite repairs.
I had a transmission go out on my F150 while on vacation. The part was on backorder. After the dealership screwing me around, I made a couple phone calls and got ahold of the right people. I was very pleased with FordCo treated me. A rep called every Wednesday to see how I was doing and updated me with the backordered part. I also had a trailer to put in storage. The dealership wouldn’t help me. I told the rep when she called and 3 minutes after hanging up from her, the dealership called stating they are sending a driver to take my trailer to a storage building.
Thanks everyone for the suggestions.
It is rated to tow 9200 lbs so I am within the specifications.
I did ask them to consider giving me an identical 2015 truck. They refused. I looked on Ford’s website inventory for Canada and there are none in the immediate vicinity.
I have also asked them to consider removing the part from another vehicle. They say the can’t and won’t but I am not sure whether it is can’t or won’t. I know there are no Expeditions at the repairing dealership. But I am not sure if this is a part also found on an F150 of which they have plenty.
As for alternative parts (or a friend suggested disconnecting the rear axle while and using 4-wheel drive), given that this vehicle is already falling apart, I am don’t want to do anything that might risk voiding the warranty. Clearly, I am going to need it.
The fact that the dealerships are “independently owned and operated” seems to be the excuse they give me for many things not being possible. It translates to they don’t have to help you, they won’t help you, and so we aren’t even going to ask.
And I am definitely having the problem db4690 mentioned that they say they will do something and then I call back and they have done nothing.
I have been told there are no Lemon Laws in Canada but I am surprised the laws have anything to do with where you breakdown as opposed to where you purchased the vehicle so I will have to check into that.
I have tried Ford Customer Service but I have to use Canada’s and that person has been the single least helpful of all. He keeps talking about how he’s been in my exact situation (really?) and he’s just like me (?) and seems to think this is going to make me feel better when I really just want some action, some plan.
The only thing that has gone well is that we had AAA RV plus and it works in Canada and they towed the trailer to our originally scheduled campground. But we have to vacate this spot, well before the truck will be repaired.
I’m pretty sure your Expedition has independent rear suspension, which the F150 does not, so there’s no option to swap out parts with one. And do NOT disconnect the rear axle, this vehicle could not tow with only the front axle driven, I’m sure. And you’d void your warranty and any hope of factory help. The applicable Lemon Law would be for the state you bought your truck, not Canada.
I don’t have much help to offer. You are in the very difficult spot of having a major, unusual part fail on a brand new vehicle far from home. Best of luck.
When my almost brand new 2014 Mazda6 needed a new part that was not yet in inventory, my dealer just took it from a 2015 on the lot and told me he didn’t mind. Mazda, and my dealer, earned my eternal gratitude (and patronage) that day.
Tell me the last 8 digits of the VIN and the list of parts they want and I’ll look into it from down here. ( I’m still waiting four months later, for an axle shaft for a 9.75 rear end , some parts just run in waves.)