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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been searching the internet for answers, and have had very little luck. I'm hoping someone can help provide some insight... I am completely ignorant about cars and I am at the mercy of our mechanics.

In November, as we were driving down the highway, all of the sudden our dash board started lighting up and the gauges began going back and forth; however the performance of the car never changed. We immediately brought it to our mechanic who tested the alternator and said it was good. We drove it home, and the problem appeared to have fixed itself until the follwoing morning. We brought it back to our mechanic who did other tests and told us that everything looked good, it was running just fine, and it was most likely a computer issue. We didn't have the money to have it fixed, so with it having no effect on its performance, we "rode it out" so to speak.

About 2 months ago, we began hearing a knocking - most often when we accellerated. We again brought it to the mechanic, he told us we were super low on oil (we have kept up on our oil changed every 3000-4000 miles); but he could not see a leak and the engine "looked fine." He told us to keep an eye on it. Then a few days ago, we were driving, and the knocking came back full force. VERY loud. We brought it to our mechanic who told us "the bottom half bearings are shot and causing the rattling sound"- we need a new engine. We chose to get a 2nd opinion and the 2nd mechanic told us that the "rod had broken and the piston is cracked" and we need a new engine. Additionally, there is a communication problem in the computer cluster itself causing the dash lights and gauges to go crazy. Total, we're looking at over $5,000 for parts and labor.

I asked this 2nd mechanic how this happens -- I wanted to make sure this wasnt user error on our part... and he told me that this is a common problem with this type of engine (the car is a Ford Escape; but has the Mazda 2.3L 4cyl 2005 engine) which currently is on back order nationwide. I could scream.. I am so furious about this. The car is only a 2005; but well passed the warrenty.

Can anyone provide some sort of insight??? I would so appreciate it. :shrug:
 

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Sorry to hear about that. I went through something similar with my VW.. Sort of... Long story short my beloved 2003 Passat wagon 1.8T experienced an oil light warning intermittently at 114,000 miles. It would come on, then I would restart it and it would be good. I then replaced the dipstick as it was cracked, thinking it was something silly like that. It went away. Then while driving it started making a horrendous noise, engine light, shaking, chugging etc. I pull off the highway and barely make it to work.

I have it towed to my mechanic who I trusted with everything. He found metal shavings up on top of the cam bearings. Now with the 1.8T Audi engine, that spells disaster. Turbo and engine done. I find out about a sludge issue with this engine type and begin the VW of America battle of 2009. In the end they did nothing to help me, even though I had all of my receipts in order and I met every single requirement of the replacement program, I got nothing. About $5,000 to replace everything from the dealer and about $3,000 sourcing the parts and bringing to my mechanic.

The outcome? I bought the Escape and sold that heap for $2,000 - after 2 months of dealing/arguing with VW. The reason I did was that the vehicle was only worth ~ $7,000. I was not going to dump $3,000-5,000 for a 7 year old ride. I can offer you this to ponder:

1. Is the vehicle paid off? This will help you decide if you want to keep or not.
2. Is it worth it to you to fix?

Again sorry to hear that. I know I offered no real help....Just letting you know you are not alone..
 

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Wow, I haven't heard many complaints about the 2.3 before. Other than needing more power, I've been told it's pretty reliable. What did your mechanic mean by "super low on oil?" Was he specific on how much? Any number of things could have gone wrong to cause that. Running "super low on oil" will definitely do it. I have to keep an eye on mine due to and oil leak. I lose 1 quart between changes so I have to check periodically. I've been kinda overly protective of my vehicles since I started driving so this is a regular thing for me. Unfortunately, you're put in this situation and left wondering why. I wish I could help you more, but either someone shorted you on your last oil change, you're burning a lot of oil or you've got a leak that somehow, the mechanic missed.
 

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CompletelyScrewed said:
We chose to get a 2nd opinion and the 2nd mechanic told us that the "rod had broken and the piston is cracked" and we need a new engine
Did he show you evidence of this? If the rod breaks then parts will most likely exit the engine somewhere and this is usually accompanied by a lot of smoke and in many cases fire. I have no way to verify this without seeing it but i would tend to believe mechanic #1 is giving you a more truthful answer. Just in most cases when parts like that break there is a catastrophy and you will definately know you blew it up. If you just wipe out a bearing then this just makes a lot of noise. However if you continue to run it making that noise then you will eventually experience catastrophic engine failure. Hope this helps!
 

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Do you have a mechanic that you trust that can verify that it's fubar for sure- ask friends/family if not for someone local? IMO, I would look into getting a used engine should be ~$1k for one with decent amount of miles and in good shape. There are many places online and found this a good route on a Civic a number of years back - still running today. I did the swap myself, but it might be worth considering. As for the dash issue - again, for large dollar repairs, trust in your mechanic is a must and there again, a trip to the interwebs for a used puter might be a good option. 5k is some major coin on top of buying the vehicle. Need to weigh your options.
 

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O thought I was the only one that this kind of stuff happen.
I had a 2002 dodge Dakota with the 3.9l v6 I loved the truck.
Then one day I am on my way to work and around the corner
I loose all power the shop I Tolkien it to said that the motor was dead.
Took it to a mother freind of mine that works on car. He told me that
he had never seen one of these engines go over 125000 miles mine had
185000mile. The end story is I just sold it and got myself an escape.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
jas88 said:
Exactly how many miles are on your Escape?
There is just under 150,000 miles on it. We've never had anything go wrong with this car (just regular maintenance) - it has been incredibly reliable until now... In the last 6 mos, we've replaced the brakes, wheel bearings, and had the throttle cleaned... when it rains, it pours. :(
 
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