If you’re looking for a practical daily driver with a smooth transmission and flexible seat configurations, you can’t go wrong with a Ford Freestyle. While this crossover was discontinued in 2009, it remains a great option for those looking for a spacious pre-owned vehicle. Before deciding whether this model is the right fit for you, let’s take a look at its reliability ratings and the common issues reported by owners across model years.
Is the Ford Freestyle Reliable?
Used Ford Freestyles have earned good reviews in terms of reliability. For instance, the 2006 Freestyle got 4.4 out of 5 reliability ratings on Edmund’s consumer review page, while the 2007 model got a 4.5 out of 5 reliability score from Kelley Blue Book.
The Ford Freestyle also scored well in terms of safety. The 2007 model, in particular, gained 5-stars in both the frontal and side crash simulations conducted by the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA).
Ford Freestyle Common Problems
As reliable as it is, the Ford Freestyle can develop faults as it racks up mileage. Here are some of the most common problems across its model years:
Several 2005 and 2007 Ford Freestyle owners have complained about transmission failure, some as early as a few months after purchasing their vehicle. Drivers report that as their check engine light illuminated, the engine would suffer from poor acceleration and would sometimes stall.
Replacing the transmission fixed this problem in some vehicles. If your Ford’s transmission fails, you may have to spend as much as $4,460 to repair your ride.
A/C System Issues
Faulty A/C components are a common complaint among 2007 Ford Freestyle owners. Issues with the crossover’s AC valve and/or AC compressor may make cabin temperatures uncomfortable for passengers.
Several owners also complained that their A/C blows air from the wrong vents and switches between the defroster and the air vents, even though the driver didn’t switch settings.
Fortunately, most of the issues involving the A/C system can be solved by replacing its faulty parts. There’s no shortage of aftermarket A/C compressors on the market today, so finding one for a Ford Freestyle will surely be a breeze.
Surge and/or Loss of Power
Sudden loss of power while on the road is a common problem for some 2006 Ford Freestyles. In some cases, the vehicle may go into “limp” mode. Many owners also experienced a sudden surge along with shaking and jerking, which can make driving dangerous in areas like a busy freeway.
Rebuilding and replacing the transmission solved the issue on most affected vehicles. If you’re starting to experience transmission-related symptoms, don’t hesitate to take your Ford Freestyle to an auto repair shop for proper diagnosis and repair.
Reports also show that some 2006 Ford Freestyles often accelerate without warning. This makes the vehicle dangerous to drive, especially in areas that have a lot of traffic, like intersections and highways.
A throttle body replacement solved the issue on most affected Ford Freestyles. Repairs for this type of issue can be a bit costly, reaching up to $560.
Corroding aluminum hoods is a common problem among Ford vehicles, especially those manufactured from 2000-2007. According to reports, the hoods of many Freestyles made in these model years are prone to rust and corrosion.
Several 2006 Ford Freestyle owners have complained that the paint along the front edge of their hood bubbled. Some drivers also reported paint peeling on the driver-side door. In most cases, these paint problems happen at around 91,450 miles. Repainting or replacing the affected hood should solve the issue.
Premature Brake Wear
Many 2006 and 2005 Ford Freestyle owners have complained that their rear brakes wore out prematurely. In some cases, the brakes start squealing a month or two after the vehicle was bought. Several drivers had to replace their rear brakes twice at 72,000 miles.
Replacing faulty components like rotors and pads usually solves the issue. The repair cost for this type of issue is estimated at $250. The price depends on the parts that need replacement.
Transmission Shifter Issues
Problems with the transmission shifter are common across 2005-2007 Ford Freestyles. According to reports, the binding of the shifter slider can make the transmission shifter hard to move. Fortunately, replacing the bezel usually fixes the problem.
Blower Motor Malfunction
Several owners of 2005-2007 Ford Freestyles that have manual temperature and fan control complained that their blower motor only works on the highest setting. The issue is usually caused by a failing blower motor resistor, and replacing it should solve the problem. If you’d like to know more about blower motor resistors, you can check out this article.
Wheel Cover Abrasion
Abrasion and fitment of wheel covers can cause these parts to create ticking and clicking noises. Most of the complaints involving this issue came from 2005-2007 Ford Freestyle owners. Lubricating the back side of the wheel covers (or the part where they touch the wheels) usually stops or reduces the noise.
Aside from the issues listed above, you may encounter other problems with a Ford Freestyle as it gets older. But as long as you read up on these potential issues, investing in this model should come with few risks. Remember to stick to your maintenance schedule and replace any faulty components right away to keep your Ford Freestyle in good shape for a long time.
Any information provided on this Website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a professional mechanic. The accuracy and timeliness of the information may change from the time of publication.
my 06 free style goes into limp mode it goes into drive no problem makers a thupping noise is it a trans or bracket
I just bought a 07 freestyle from my sister in law love it. Just replaced the rear brakes 170 miles on it. Should I be concerned? It runs like a dream now.