Q: My car was recalled last year for power steering failure and it was fixed.

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This past week the power steering actually went out. I called and called but I keep getting different answers. What is my best options as far as letting Ford repair the car? One person mentioned I have to pay, another said it's not the same problem even though the issues match the recall. If the first repair didn't help what are the chances that the 2nd will?

My car has 120000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

This is a vehicle safety issue. You can contact Ford Motor Company, at their main customer service number, and also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. You can file a complaint with NHTSA which can be input on-line at the subject website or conveyed by phone to the NHTSA Safety Hotline.

The recalled Ford vehicles had electric power steering assist systems that may shut down as a result of a steering motor sensor fault. During the investigation leading up to the recall, it was determined that intermittent electrical connections caused by quality issues associated with conformal coat contamination and ribbon cable pin misalignment within the steering gear motor could lead to a loss of the motor position sensor signal, resulting in a sudden loss of power assist while driving. The recall covered approximately 393,623 vehicles built from September 2010 through February 2012, including yours of course. The repair consisted of updating the PSCM software to prevent a loss of steering assist while driving. The revised software provides audible and visual warnings to the driver. However, if one or more of the following DTCs (diagnostic trouble codes) were stored when the car was presented by the customer to the dealership, C1B00-62, C200B-2F, C200B-61, C200B-62, C200C-2F, C200D-49, U0300-00, U2011-49, U2011-61, U3000-46, U3000-49, U3000-61, U3000-72, U3000-96, P07AE-09, the dealer was to replace the entire EPAS system.

If the present failure you are experiencing is due to the SAME issue (the TECHNICAL faults described in the just preceding paragraph) you should discuss the matter in high detail with Ford because Ford may very well make good on the presently required repair or they may at least make some concession to help you out with the repair cost (e.g., meet you halfway, so to speak). If the failure is completely unrelated to the technical issue(s) documented in the recall, Ford will "probably" argue that it is not a recall or warranty issue and thus you are stuck with the cost of the repair. Consequently, your initial focus should be on understanding and confirming EXACTLY what the cause of the present failure is because if the present failure is the same technical failure documented in the recall, you will have a stronger case to make to get it fixed, yet again, under the recall. In all events, you should notify NHTSA inasmuch as the matter involves a system, affecting safety, that was under recall. They will be very interested to hear from you.

If you desire that the fault with the steering be diagnosed (and perhaps repaired if Ford refuses to do it) by a certified Mechanic, dispatched by YourMechanic right to your location, please request an electrical diagnostic - electronic power steering and the responding certified mechanic will get this resolved for you. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

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