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Transmission Noise - Likely Solved


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27 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   marcin

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Posted 26 January 2016 - 09:46 PM

Just wanted to share an issue, and its likely resolution.   It started with an odd droning noise at around 30-40mph at about 59,000 miles on my car.  My tires were nearly gone, so I attributed it to that.   Fast forward a couple thousand miles to some new tires and guess what... noise not gone.  In fact, it got much worse in the last week or so.  By now, i'm at 63,000 miles.  The noise seemed to be coming from the transmission area.  

 

I took the car to my local dealer this morning for diagnosis.  The mechanic confirmed the unusual noise on a test drive with me.  They then did more work by attaching microphones around the engine bay to isolate the source.  That part was super cool.  They have nice toys there :)

 

The dealer's evaluation showed the noise to be likely coming form the right-side CV axle assembly.  That drive shaft has a straight portion ("half shaft") that has a big bearing on it.  Apparently, that bearing is going out and making lots of noise.  Unfortunately for me, the drivetrain warranty is 60k.  That extra 3k miles is looking to cost nearly $700.  Ouch!  Ironic how if it was the tranny, I'm covered for 150k <- one of the few benefits of living in CA.

 

I'll update my post once the repair is done and confirmed fixed.  They had to order the CV axle.  I'm hoping I can work a solution through the dealer/Ford for some goodwill on this one.  I just hope the new axle lasts longer than 60k miles :)

 

UPDATE 1: The CV axle turned out to NOT be the major source of noise.  I drove the car after they swapped it out and to me, it sounded the same.  They insist that the bearing on the half-shaft was bad.  I'll leave it alone as the thing already had 63k on it.  I'll just consider it a "proactive" replacement :)  In any case, they did some further digging and found metal shavings in the trans fluid.  That's bad, in case you were wondering :)  A new trans has been ordered and Ford will take care of it all under warranty.  Can't wait.  New trans arrives next week.  In the meantime, my car sounds quite unhappy going down the road, but it runs.  MPG doesn't even seem affected.   Will update again once new tranny is installed. Can't wait...

 

UPDATE 2: Trans repair is well on its way.  After 3 full days at the dealer, they're almost done.  All that's left is some computer programming (program the new trans, i guess) and a wheel alignment.  Should have my car back tomorrow.  Almost there...


Edited by marcin, 06 February 2016 - 12:08 AM.

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#2 OFFLINE   drdiesel1

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Posted 27 January 2016 - 12:19 AM

Great info and thanks for sharing it :hi5:


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#3 OFFLINE   marcin

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Posted 29 January 2016 - 08:58 PM

See update in my original post.  In short, the eCVT did turn out to be the likely cause of the majority of weird noises i'm hearing.  New trans is on the way...


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#4 OFFLINE   ITFlyer

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Posted 03 February 2016 - 10:16 AM

See update in my original post.  In short, the eCVT did turn out to be the likely cause of the majority of weird noises i'm hearing.  New trans is on the way...

 

Hope they can source one faster than they did for me. It took them almost three months to find a new transmission when mine went (same exact symptoms as yours). Apparently they are very short on transmissions right now...


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#5 OFFLINE   rbort

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Posted 03 February 2016 - 10:29 AM

How long / miles is the transmission covered under warranty?  Also would be it covered in the extended warranty should it go bad after the initial coverage?

 

-=>Raja.


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#6 OFFLINE   marcin

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Posted 06 February 2016 - 12:05 AM

Hope they can source one faster than they did for me. It took them almost three months to find a new transmission when mine went (same exact symptoms as yours). Apparently they are very short on transmissions right now...

 

Mine took 6 days from time they ordered it to the time it arrived.  

 

 

How long / miles is the transmission covered under warranty?  Also would be it covered in the extended warranty should it go bad after the initial coverage?

 

-=>Raja.

 

In my home state of California, Ford is required to provide a 15 year/150,000-mile warranty on all "unique hybrid components," which includes the transmission.  For most other states, the warranty is 8 years//100,000 miles.  If you search on Google, you can find the long warranty document from Ford that details all this, although it's a pretty boring read.

 

Also, I made a 2nd update to my original post.  My car should be done tomorrow.  Really looking forward to it.  I just got a loaner car from them today, a Fusion Energi.  Also a nice car, but I miss my C-Max.  


Edited by marcin, 06 February 2016 - 12:10 AM.

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#7 OFFLINE   rbort

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Posted 06 February 2016 - 05:39 AM

 

 

I just got a loaner car from them today, a Fusion Energi.  Also a nice car, but I miss my C-Max.  

 

I also drove someone else's Fusion in VA when I was down there for a visit.  Very similar to the Cmax though I like the Cmax's dashboard better and the cabin/sitting position much better.  I thought the Cmax could have been improved just a little bit more with more info in the instrument cluster that the Fusion has, there was no reason to omit a couple of things from the Cmax, but nevertheless I'd pick my Cmax over a Fusion any day.

 

Good to know about the warranty coverage, thanks!

 

-=>Raja.


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#8 OFFLINE   fotomoto

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Posted 06 February 2016 - 06:44 AM

In my home state of California, Ford is required to provide a 15 year/150,000-mile warranty on all "unique hybrid components," which includes the transmission.  For most other states, the warranty is 8 years//100,000 miles. 

 

ON other hybrid forums, I've seen dealers try to say the transaxle falls under the powertrain rules so I took a look at the Ford warranty. (bold font mine)  

 

https://www.ford.com...-US_05_2014.pdf

 

Page 10:

 

"(1) Your vehicle’s Powertrain components are covered for five years or 60,000 miles, whichever occurs first. The extended coverage applies to the Engine: all internal lubricated parts, cylinder block, cylinder heads, electrical fuel pump, powertrain control module, engine mounts, flywheel, injection pump, manifold (exhaust and intake), manifold bolts, oil pan, oil pump, seals and gaskets, engine thermostat, engine thermostat housing, timing chain cover, timing chain (gears or belt), turbocharger/supercharger unit, valve covers, water pump; Transmission: all internal parts, clutch cover, seals and gaskets, torque converter, transfer case (including all internal parts), transmission case, transmission mounts; single-speed gear (for The Focus Electric);"

 

 

But page 11 states:

 

 "(4) Your vehicle’s unique hybrid / electric components are covered during the Hybrid / Electric Unique Component Coverage, which lasts for eight years or 100,000 miles, whichever occurs first. • The following hybrid parts are covered during this extended coverage period: high-voltage battery, hybrid continuously variable transmission, Inverter System Controller (ISC), DC/DC converter, high-voltage battery connector, battery pack fan assembly, thermistor probe, Hybrid Battery Pack Sensor Module (HBPSM), Battery Energy Control Module (BECM), and the PHEV onboard charger."

 

So in Marcin's case, they got it right.


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#9 OFFLINE   drdiesel1

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Posted 06 February 2016 - 10:05 AM


 


But page 11 states:

 

 "(4) Your vehicle’s unique hybrid / electric components are covered during the Hybrid / Electric Unique Component Coverage, which lasts for eight years or 100,000 miles, whichever occurs first. • The following hybrid parts are covered during this extended coverage period: high-voltage battery, hybrid continuously variable transmission, Inverter System Controller (ISC), DC/DC converter, high-voltage battery connector, battery pack fan assembly, thermistor probe, Hybrid Battery Pack Sensor Module (HBPSM), Battery Energy Control Module (BECM), and the PHEV onboard charger."

 

So in Marcin's case, they got it right.

 

 

CA has 10 years or 150K miles :hi5:



#10 OFFLINE   stevedebi

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 09:52 AM

ON other hybrid forums, I've seen dealers try to say the transaxle falls under the powertrain rules so I took a look at the Ford warranty. (bold font mine)  

 

https://www.ford.com...-US_05_2014.pdf

 

Page 10:

 

"(1) Your vehicle’s Powertrain components are covered for five years or 60,000 miles, whichever occurs first. The extended coverage applies to the Engine: all internal lubricated parts, cylinder block, cylinder heads, electrical fuel pump, powertrain control module, engine mounts, flywheel, injection pump, manifold (exhaust and intake), manifold bolts, oil pan, oil pump, seals and gaskets, engine thermostat, engine thermostat housing, timing chain cover, timing chain (gears or belt), turbocharger/supercharger unit, valve covers, water pump; Transmission: all internal parts, clutch cover, seals and gaskets, torque converter, transfer case (including all internal parts), transmission case, transmission mounts; single-speed gear (for The Focus Electric);"

 

 

But page 11 states:

 

 "(4) Your vehicle’s unique hybrid / electric components are covered during the Hybrid / Electric Unique Component Coverage, which lasts for eight years or 100,000 miles, whichever occurs first. • The following hybrid parts are covered during this extended coverage period: high-voltage battery, hybrid continuously variable transmission, Inverter System Controller (ISC), DC/DC converter, high-voltage battery connector, battery pack fan assembly, thermistor probe, Hybrid Battery Pack Sensor Module (HBPSM), Battery Energy Control Module (BECM), and the PHEV onboard charger."

 

So in Marcin's case, they got it right.

We went over this with the Ford Escape Hybrid. In general that entire eCVT should be covered. HOWEVER, there are a number of parts that don't exist on a conventional car that are not covered by the 10/150K (here in CA) warranty. The specialized braking systems were a particular issue with the FEH, as I recall; they cost about 4K to replace and were not part of the special warranty. There is a lot of stuff that is on a C-Max Energi - expensive stuff - that does not exist on an ICE model (some of it not even on a Hybrid C-Max, like the electric heating) that isn't covered. It is a complex machine. And of course, the biggest question for us Energi owners, is what constitutes "reasonable" battery degradation. They will replace a failed HVB, but not one that has reduced capacity.



#11 OFFLINE   drdiesel1

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Posted 10 February 2016 - 03:43 AM

Regenerative braking is done by the eCVT and the controllers are part of the hybrid components.

The brake system is standard hydraulic the same as any other car on the road.  Regen is the only

difference and it's not part of the hydraulic system. It's a parallel setup for the electrical functions.



#12 OFFLINE   stevedebi

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Posted 10 February 2016 - 09:04 AM

Regenerative braking is done by the eCVT and the controllers are part of the hybrid components.

The brake system is standard hydraulic the same as any other car on the road.  Regen is the only

difference and it's not part of the hydraulic system. It's a parallel setup for the electrical functions.

DR, you talkin' to me? Not sure since you didn't "quote".

 

The FEH had a special system to charge the brakes that was not tied to the ICE. I don't know if the C-Max has that. It was only on the Escape Hybrid, and no other Escape, but was not covered by the hybrid warranty. It had nothing to do with regen. And yes, it was a 4K repair.

 

The FEH made a noise as soon as you unlocked, as it charged the system. I don't hear that with the C-Max, so I suspect they found a better (or at least quieter) way to do the brakes. But the electric heat is still an example of something unique to the hybrid that is not covered by the extended warranty. I just didn't want folks thinking that everything that is unique to the hybrid is covered by the extended warranty. It isn't - only the HVB, eCVT, and the listed controls from the owner manual.



#13 OFFLINE   cmwv

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Posted 07 April 2016 - 09:19 AM

I am currently experiencing the exact same as original poster, Marcin. Low growling noise and high-pitched whine in front end. Diagnosed as bearing on right-hand drive axle. Replaced bearing, same noise. On further examination it's the transmission. All this at 72,000 miles. Not good. I'm beginning to understand why Ford products have the unreliable rep. Fortunately this problem is covered by the warranty. Also fortunate is that I purchased from a great dealer, Hagerstown Ford: three cheers! Their service is excellent. They can get a new transmission fairly easily and will likely eat the bearing since it was not the problem. Transmission exchange is about a twelve-hour job, and they'll give me a loaner for that time. Hope to get it taken care of next week.



#14 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 10:05 AM

I had mine replaced at 98K and it was RICH FORD's third, two FFH  so they had some experience. I think a day out and another back in. :smile2:

ICE/Trans
 
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#15 OFFLINE   cmwv

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Posted 23 April 2016 - 11:43 AM

Update on transmission replacement: My dealer found a new transmission. Took car in on Tuesday 4/19. Was told it would take about 16 hours of technician's (formerly mechanic) time, although they originally said 12 hours. Today is Saturday 4/23, 5th day, and still don't have car back. Dealer says swap has been completed, but several "body panels" have to be put back on and the vehicle road tested. Meanwhile they've put me in a gas-guzzling Chevy Silverado; it's like driving a bus.


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#16 OFFLINE   cmwv

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Posted 25 April 2016 - 05:17 PM

Finally got my car back today (Monday 4/25) with new transmission installed. Noise is gone, and everything seems to be working fine. Didn't lose any driving data from left screen. However, no extended warranty for new transmission. Dealer says that when my initial 100,000 miles is driven, about 25,000 miles from now, warranty on drive train expires. If I had had to pay for the transmission replacement I was told the cost would have been around $8,000. This is making me extremely nervous. If transmission can't be counted on for more that 70,000 or so miles, I'll need to sell this car in another couple of years or risk an expense of more than half of what the car would be worth by then. Not what I had counted on when I bought it as I usually keep cars around 10 years. Suddenly I'm not liking my chances with this car although I love it--the look, handling, EV component, etc. But now it is looking to be unreliable. If Elon can deliver them, I'm starting to think Model 3.



#17 OFFLINE   Levi Smith

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Posted 26 April 2016 - 06:52 AM

Finally got my car back today (Monday 4/25) with new transmission installed. Noise is gone, and everything seems to be working fine. Didn't lose any driving data from left screen. However, no extended warranty for new transmission. Dealer says that when my initial 100,000 miles is driven, about 25,000 miles from now, warranty on drive train expires. If I had had to pay for the transmission replacement I was told the cost would have been around $8,000. This is making me extremely nervous. If transmission can't be counted on for more that 70,000 or so miles, I'll need to sell this car in another couple of years or risk an expense of more than half of what the car would be worth by then. Not what I had counted on when I bought it as I usually keep cars around 10 years. Suddenly I'm not liking my chances with this car although I love it--the look, handling, EV component, etc. But now it is looking to be unreliable. If Elon can deliver them, I'm starting to think Model 3.

I agree this is a concern but in reality it's a concern on any car.  There are just more big ticket items in a Hybrid.

 

I just sold my 2004 Prius with 197K miles on it and it never really needed anything beyond a couple wheel bearings, a set of springs and a couple other minor items over the years.

But there have definitely been cases of transmissions and batteries failing in Prius.  It's not common, but it happens.  The question is how often it's happening.  The transmission doesn't seem to be a common issue in the C-Max either, but given the lower numbers of C-Maxes out there I wonder how the percentages compare...



#18 OFFLINE   rbort

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Posted 26 April 2016 - 07:03 AM

And then you just got yours replaced, so chances are you're done with that forever, I can't see it failing twice in the same car.

 

-=>Raja.



#19 OFFLINE   stevedebi

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Posted 26 April 2016 - 07:39 AM

Finally got my car back today (Monday 4/25) with new transmission installed. Noise is gone, and everything seems to be working fine. Didn't lose any driving data from left screen. However, no extended warranty for new transmission. Dealer says that when my initial 100,000 miles is driven, about 25,000 miles from now, warranty on drive train expires. If I had had to pay for the transmission replacement I was told the cost would have been around $8,000. This is making me extremely nervous. If transmission can't be counted on for more that 70,000 or so miles, I'll need to sell this car in another couple of years or risk an expense of more than half of what the car would be worth by then. Not what I had counted on when I bought it as I usually keep cars around 10 years. Suddenly I'm not liking my chances with this car although I love it--the look, handling, EV component, etc. But now it is looking to be unreliable. If Elon can deliver them, I'm starting to think Model 3.

Which state are you in? For CARB states, the iCVT is warranted to 150K. Obviously the dealer believes you are in a non CARB state.


Edited by stevedebi, 26 April 2016 - 07:40 AM.


#20 OFFLINE   rafacq

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Posted 26 April 2016 - 07:42 AM

After stories like this, I am glad I purchased the Ford ESP 7yr/100k $0 ded warranty!

 

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