Q: Steering stopped working while I was driving

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The power steering totally stopped working in my 2008 Ford Escape when I was driving home the other day. I was a pretty big shock when I turned the wheel and the wheels barely responded! I know I just passed 100,000 miles in my car, but the steering should be built to last longer than that. If it failed at another time it could have been really bad! What can I do to remedy this problem for good? I can’t use this much effort to steer for much longer!

A recall on Ford Escapes came out in 2014 related to this issue. The torque sensor on the steering column is the likely cause of failure as this has been the case for many other Escape owners. Unfortunately to replace the torque sensor the entire steering column must be replaced due to the fact that the two parts are integrated into one another. Since this is a costly repair Ford will do a scan for trouble codes on your vehicle. If the codes they are looking for show up they will fix the issue free of charge. If the codes they are looking for do not show up Ford will then charge you for the repair and suggest that it is driver error. Taking this into consideration my first stop would be the local Ford dealership for a possible recall repair. Unfortunately this recall repair may not fix the problem either, considering that there have been complaints of post recall repair power steering issues. Even more unfortunate is the fact that in most cases Ford refuses to fix recall issues after the initial repair has been done. This is not a guarantee, but it is possible that there could be other issues after Ford services your vehicle. If Ford does service your vehicle under a recall be sure that they use a steering column that was made after the recall was released. This will significantly increase your chances of not having a repeat issue. On the other hand, power steering failures can also be related to a number of other parts. Some of these parts include the power steering pump, rack and pinion, gearbox, hoses, and of course the notorious loss of fluid (leaks). When Ford inspects your vehicle be certain that all of these parts are checked as well for they could be part of your issue as well.

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