NHTSA Closes Investigation on Ford EcoBoost Issues

9 Tremor EcoBoost II

The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration has officially closed its investigation into the more than 500 reports of Ford's F-150 EcoBoost V-6 engines stalling under certain conditions. According to the Detroit News, the investigation looked at 2011 to 2013 model F-150s that were reported to misfire due to moisture accumulating through the intake process.

The specific conditions necessary for the reduced power situation to occur have been addressed with several intake and air cooler modifications. Ford issued a technical service bulletin to dealers that addresses how to deal with it. The fix includes the installation of a small deflector shield in the air stream. The 2014 F-150 has the fix. No word as to what effect this will have on any pending or future litigation.

No doubt NHTSA will be ramping up its recall review procedures given how much exposure it has incurred with the GM ignition recalls and the role the government safety review board played in the delayed recall.

Cars.com photo by Evan Sears



Okay...what about the electric steering?

All the new cars and trucks are just seem to becoming too complicated. I remember when all you had to do was replace the fuel/air filter, plugs, points and your old Ford ran better.

Of course that old 2x2 single cab pickup only got 10 mpg.

How much power is lost by deflecting some of the air away?

"I remember when all you had to do was replace the fuel/air filter, plugs, points and your old Ford ran better."

I remember that too but I also remember doing some of it at least anually. My father ran a service station in the early '60s and told me that some cars then had to have new plugs every 4,000 miles. When I was a kid cars 10 years old or with more than 100,000 miles were ready for the scrap heap. As a father of 4 (3 driving) I now have 8 vehicles but I would on those 8 less than the 2 I had when I married 30 years ago. I have recently done some updating but still have 3 vehicles over 10 years old and 100,000 miles that run great.

Yes, sometimes there are problems with new ways of doing things but that is the price of progress and I for one don't want to go back. So far I love my new Eco-Boost.

So there will be a recall or won't be?

I think at this point it's up to Ford if they would issue a recall.

"The NHTSA agency has since received a total of 525 such complaints, and Ford itself reported receiving over 4,000."


What issue. There is no any issue. Ecoboost has been tortured by Ford without any issue.

It was and still is an issue, people continue to suck water into the intake under the appropriate conditions and Ford's "fixes" have not fixed the problem. What Ford's "fixes" have done is reduce the cooling capacity of the intercooler, which makes their already outrageous tow ratings even more outrageous.

The tree huggers from California EPA office is killing the trucks in terms of making them more computerized just to help emmissions and MPG.

I too remenber that all we had to change was the plugs, filters (air/fuel), engine oil. Now you have to be a computer geek to work on these trucks. What ever happend to the term "KISS".

Don't get me wrong, I am glad that our trucks are getting better and better, but at to what costs.

People that have never dealt with turbo and intercoolers. They will accumulate some moisture as they cool down and create dense air.

A few WOT's on occasion keeps them clear.

Knock on wood, my personal 11 Ecoboost, now with 75k miles, and the family farms 11 Ecoboost, now with, 115k have been perfect.

Ford said its data shows that the TSBs have solved the problem listed in complaints —100 percent effective for 2013 models and 95 percent effective for 2011-12 trucks.

Scott don' be a fool. Ford does not even have a testing methodology to reproduce said problem. The *only* way they "know" if their "fix" worked is if a customer returns with the same vehicle with the same problem AND the computer registers a code. They have fixed nothing and have simply made their trucks less capable.

I'll stick with my tried & true V8's! Thank you!

Mileage Man is a Ram troll from Allpar. Don't feed the troll.

The Ecoturd is still new, wait until people with eight and ten year old trucks have to start replacing the turbos. Mileage is one thing but nothing matches time and the age of the motor when testing.

I'm with Walt. I would never go back to the good old days. I was just reflecting last week on the fact that I've driven one car 295,000 miles without ever doing a wheel alignment, without ever replacing a muffler, and now the oil consumption is "up" to a quart every 5,000 miles. Never had an issue with the fuel injection. I think these new complicated cars are fine.


Old days vs New days:

New designs are certainly more sophisticated. New cars and trucks have many features we've come to enjoy (power windows, backup cameras, better FE, safer brakes/tires) but the older cars and trucks did not put you in the poor house when it came time to get a new one, either.

My first car cost $450. My next car cost $100. My next car cost $200 and my next one cost $1000.

Back in 1978 I paid $100 for a five year old Chevy Vega. It had problems but I drove it for sixty thousand miles. I paid $1000 for a 2 door Cutlass 350 in 1984 and it was beautiful and really fast. Great cars.

Today's cars and trucks are brilliantly made and designed but you can damn near buy a house for the price of a top dog F150 or RAM these days.

I worked on class eights. not once did I have a CAC that had water in it from the inlet air they have purge valves, and an intake housing that purges the moisture. If Ford is having a problem that it gets enough moisture into the intake that it affects the operation of the engine then it is a design problem.

New cars have got some nice features, although you won't see me buying a truck with any of the gay seat warmers/coolers.

Why is it always the same stupid "wait until the turbos have to be replaced" nonsense every time the EcoBoost is mentioned? Turbos are not the part that are most likely to fail first, not even close. You don't hear diesel owners complaining about the short life of the turbocharger, and diesel turbos are generally put under higher stress due to exhaust gas temperatures and higher under-hood temps than the gas models. Injectors, fuel pumps, variable valve timing and cylinder deactivation mechanisms and even ECUs are more likely to fail in a properly maintained engine than the turbo(s). By the time the turbo is ready to be replaced, it's probably getting time to think about a general freshening of the entire gas motor. And yes, I've owned higher-mileage gas turbos as well as diesels.

So they sort of fixed it, then you have head gasket and timming chain issues.

@Papa jim: or a you can damn near buy a house for the cost of a Chevy 1500, considerong they raised their already high prices.

You didn't want to mention that.

A Chevy Vega? 60k was alot of miles on those. Good luck seeing 150k in it.


Dispute a single thing I have written. Oh wait can't do it? Then shut your mouth.

Wonder why ford is teaming up with GM to build the new * speed trans??????



Because people are ignorant to turbos and the cost of the Ecoboost turbos. Both Ecoboost turbos cost less than $500 new through Tasca and even less if you sent them off to get rebuilt and upgraded to more blades on the tubines. However this is a moot point to those ignorant F's because they are looking for anything accept their favorite brand to fail. Another things they fail to look at is that turbos are rather simple with few moving parts. There are a lot fewer parts in a turbo than the two extra cylinders on a V8. Another thing that kills engines is high rpms and most turbo engines do the the same work as V8s, but require less rpms to do it. Not using much rpms in an engines life is proven to increase engine life.

The CAC condensation issue with the Ecoboost is an issue and I am not denying that. It is not as big of an issue as some of the fan boys want to make it out to be, but is was still an issue. The problem was not with engine itself, but with the CAC that was put with it. It did not effect every engine so issuing a recall would not be needed since it does not effect a set number of units in a certain build date like recalls do. That is why most manufacturers have what is called TSBs. TSBs are made to fix vehicles that may have issues while others don't.

Another things that these fan boys fail to know is that even their trucks also have this "limp mode". It is an EPA mandate that all vehicles have to have to save the emissions system if a two misfires are detected in a cycle. The "limp mode" will then kick in and shut off the injectors to those two cylinders for 30 seconds so there will be no unburned fuel getting to the catalytic converter causing possible damage to them. This "limp mode" does not cause a complete loss of acceleration, but just not let you accelerate as fast. If this not forced to be applied to the truck then all that would happen is a brief misfire and nothing more. Since this an EPA mandate making this "limp mode" happen then I would have doubted the NHTSA would have done anything about it since they would have to go against the all mighty EPA.

Even though I have never experienced the issue, I am glad that it was finally fixed in the new trucks. I was expecting some issues to arise in the new Ecoboost and it would have been stupid of me to think that any brand new engine or truck will be perfect out of the box. The Ecoboost 3.5L is a very powerful tow engine for a 1500 class truck and will be even more so with the new 8 - speed in the new trucks.

I am a Ford guy. But after the issues many people had here in Labrador City this past winter, I am sticking with a 5.0. Temperatures here in winter average around -25 to-40. People had 2013-2014 Ecoboost motors that wouldn't start and ended up being towed to the dealership. Let's just say people in this town were pissed that their brand new vehicle wouldn't start.

@Chris Hill

Turbos have nothing to do with an engines starting ability. I would bet that cold temperature effecting the batteries cold cranking amps had more to do with it.

" The problem was not with engine itself, but with the CAC that was put with it. It did not effect every engine so issuing a recall would not be needed since it does not effect a set number of units in a certain build date like recalls do."

Wrong. All of the engines were build the same before this issue. It would effect all the engines in the same weather conditions. Those other ones are just lucky, they didn't experience that yet, because customers use them in different climate. ( Humidity, Rain...)

It was 100% fixed in the new ones. If it was me and I had one of the early ones that were 95-100% fixed, I would do nothing because it only can happen under certain conditions and under hard acceleration.

Interesting post I saw on Ramforum:


Interesting time at dealer

So I was picking up my truck the dealer for warranty work. Drivers mirror loose and glass moves when you hit a bump. I was talking with a salesman about the possibility of a new truck. And was talking number when the sales manager over heard me. And muttered something from his desk. Which was approx 20 ft away. I was talking about the hold back. Which I guess he didnt like. Then I nicely said. Excuse me I did not here you. So he gets up and begins to talk at me in a louder then normal voice. Were everyone in the dealer can here him. About how they don't have to do anything with hold back this and that. They don't need my business. At this point I'm pretty pissed off. I've bought 2 trucks from them and got 5 referrals last year. Here is the best part. Clear as day. He says. GO F*** YOURSELF. In the dealer ship while customers are in there. At this point I have not raised my voice yet. Till now. Then proceeds to tell me my truck is a POS. And the owner told him to kick me out when i got there. Even tho alls i did was pick my truck up. Had no other incodents ever. This is there sales manager then a sales man steps in and proceeds to yell at me as well. This where I left. And will never step foot in that dealer ever again.

Interesting he can say that the truck they sell is a pos. Especially with customers in there.


Absoluely call the Chrysler Customer Support line. I had an issue similar to yours where the dealer suddenly turned their back on me and treated me like crap. Make sure you have names/dates/times/etc. After speaking with their call center a C/S manager called me back and confirmed that their behavior was unacceptable. They addressed it by sending the Regional rep to the dealer to address it with them. I received an apology letter from the Service Manager (individual I had issues with) and was treated well after that. They apparently had received word that commissions were going down or something due to the dealer principle selling so everyone was in a pissy mood and I took the brunt of it.


The dealership is Branhaven jeep ram. Sales managers name was Michael ramcke. The salesmans name was ryan hall. I already have a enhanced Chrysler customer satisfaction advocat working on the issue.

Turns out I called dealer to ask where they left off with my warranty work and the owner decide to ban me from the place. Not that I care.

But all this after I bought 3 vehicle from them and 5 referrals. Doesn't seem right to me.


Was also told I was a nobody. And this is how they treat customers like me.


Something is missing from this story. There is no reason they would "ban you" from the dealership if you are bringing money in there.


I walked into service dept. Got keys for my truck. Walked over to show room. Started talking to my normal salesman. Told him to do an appraisal. OK grabbed reg. Then we went and checked out a diesel 1500. Went for a test drive came back. Sat down. Salesman. Got called into office. Door was closed not sure what talking about. Came back out. And gave me the trade number. Said OK. Told he nicely another dealer offered me more money. Which he understood. So he went over to talk to manager. Came back and told me I should take there offer. So I said OK. Then. I asked about the price of truck and what they can do on it. I mentioned something about hold back. And sales manager heard it. And muttered something loud enough for me to here it but I didn't catch it. So I politely said excuse me I didn't here you. So he walks out. And procreds to tell me how they are the number 1 dealer in the state. And they don't have to do anything. At this point he is talking at me loud enough for everone in dealership to hear. Then the salesman in the next cubicle peers head over the divider. And. Says WHO THE F*** ARE YOU. We don't owe you anything. Your a nobody. Till this time I was nice. I then looked at salesman with head over the and to him. To f*** him self. Then the sales manager. Says no you f*** your self. The owner wanted me to through you out when you walked in. Not sure why or if it was true owner wasn't there. Have never caused an. Issue ever. Even when service spilled oil all over under truck. Cleaned it my self at home . then he tells me they are going to call cops on me. And that my truck is a pos. And there is all kinds of issues with it. So I said this is how you treat customers. And he said customers like you yes. And I left.


Wow there's been quiet a bit of dodge dealers with attitude problems this year I've had problems with my dealer in my area and so has others also and just filed a complaint on them for screwin up my new truck, I want return to them but if that was me in your situation his ass would of been laid out as soon as he said go f*** yourself props to you for keepin your cool bud


Sorry to hear about this, as much as I love my Dodges it kind of puts a bad taste in your mouth about the brand sometimes almost to the point to jump ship for good.


Nope, it didn't effect every engine. If it did then Ford would have had 400,000 complaints instead of just 4,000. My truck drove in the exact same conditions right behind a friend of mine that had the issue happen to him driving in front of me. My truck never experienced and issue and none of my works branches have ever experienced the issue in their Ecoboost fleet vehicles. Yahoo just wants to make out like it is every vehicle so he can say something about it. I don't why it matters to him if it is true or not since half the crap he spews is false or just cherry picked information to make him feel like he knows what he is talking about.

@papa jim--True the vehicles are much more expensive today. There is an article on TTAC in the junkyard section about a scrap 2 door 63 Dodge Dart 170 with a slant 6 and three on the tree. My older brother bought a new one just like the one in the article except is was light green with a dark green interior. My brother had just gotten married at age 19 and he took what he had in savings along with money he received from the family as a wedding gift and bought a new Dart for about $1700. True the Dart was stripped except for the optional AM radio and heater (those were options on a Dart in 1963) but it was his first car and it served him well for several years with 3 kids. Not too many 19 year olds or older can afford a basic new car today. The cars are better today but then are they as affordable now as they were then when you compare pay and the cost of living. Most people have to borrow to buy even a late model car or truck.

Cars are cheaper now than ever.

In Australia you can get yourself into a new vehicle for less than $12 000. This represents approximately 4 months of work on the minimum wage.

Cars in the US are cheaper and more affordable. What will cause issues in the US are those ridiculous financial instruments, car loans and leases that can go on for over 100 months.

Why do people purchase beyond their means? Why does government allow for this? In the end all will suffer due to a lack of responsible regulation.

All1 - The intercooler issue affected every ecoboost. Period. There are no differences in parts between models. No lot differences have made any difference. You were obviously driving your truck differently than the guy in front of you. Period.

@@Chris Hill - really? I live in Northern BC. I had a rental EB 3.5 F150 for 9 days last winter. Started out with a huge dump of snow, then a weird rain storm, and then -25C to -35C.
Never had a problem with the engine. I didn't like the E-locker (actually hate it). The rest of the truck was fine.

@mileage man

No it didn't. Period. And when I get home I will post the link of the Ford and NHTSA test that show that. Peroid.




Just because there are flaws in an engine doesn't mean everyone will have the exact rate of failure.

There can and will be instances when a failure doesn't occur.

The failure rate of any machine is driven by is usage and applied load.

It would be interesting to see the data on what usage the failed Eco Boost engines incurred.

Were the failed Eco Boosts used for heavy work? Or were the failed engines driven by rev heads who flogged the engine.

There would be a difference. A engine used for work underload at moderate speeds as compared to an engine that has the $ht rev'd out of it.

If it is under a work load, then Ford should have a closer look at the engine and find out why it is failing. But, if it is attributed to high revs and racing the engine, then I would let the consumer suffer a little more.

@big Al

Like I said in my last comment. I will post the multiple page tests both in and out of a laboratory done by Ford and backed up by the NHTSA when I get home so we can all quit making mindless assumptions on the matter.

@Big Al, people need to rely less on the government to protect them, and more on themselves to make sensible decisions. Leave it up to the creditor and debtor to make the risk-benefit analysis. Why is this better than relying on the government? Because entrepreneurs are smarter than legislators, they will always find ways around "obstacles." The more you depend on others for your protection, the more likely you'll get yourself in trouble. It's like a person who can't swim who would rather depend on a lifeguard than learn how to swim.

Al, The engines didn't fail. They lost power due to computer programming setting off a limp mode due to misfiring. Some have limp mod for transmission overheating too.

Application for Ram 1500 Finance:

Last Name _______________
First Name (check box)
[_] Billy-Bob [_] Bobby-Sue
[_] Billy-Joe [_] Bobby-Jo
[_] Billy-Ray [_] Bobby-Ann
[_] Billy-Sue [_] Bobby-Lee
[_] Billy-Jack [_] Bobby-Beth
Age_____ (if unsure guess)
Sex____M ____F_____Not Sure
Shoe Size_____Left______Right
Occupation (check box)
[_] Farmer [_] Mechanic
[_] Hairdresser [_] Waitress
[_] Unemployed [_] Dirty Politician
Spouses Name _______________
2nd Spouses Name _______________
3rd Spouses Name _________________
Lovers Name ___________________
2nd Lovers Name ___________________
Relationship To Spouse (check box)
[_] Sister [_] Aunt
[_] Brother [_] Uncle
[_] Mother [_] Son
[_] Cousin [_] Pet
Number of children living in household ______
Number of children living in shed ______
Number of children that are yours __________
Education 1 2 3 4 (Circle Highest Grade Completed)
Do you [_] Own [_] Rent Mobile Home
_____ Total Number Of Vehicles You own
_____ Total Number Of Vehicles That Still Crank
_____ Total Number Of Vehicles In Front Yard
_____ Total Number Of Vehicles In Back Yard
_____ Number Of Vehicles On Cement Blocks
Model and Year of your current pickup ______194__
Do You Have A Gun Rack? [_] Yes [_] No
If "NO" Please Explain ______________________________

In the "old days vs. new days" comments, there I one thing not mentioned at all, and that is we have cars that are 100 years old still running around today, and cars from the 50's and 60's that can at least go the speed limit unlike some 100 year old cars, but the one huge difference is the vehicles made today will NOT be running 50-100 years from now, but the old cars of today, the 100 year old cars and the cars built in the 50-60's will still be running, but a vehicle build today? will not be running once the electronics that are different and newer than the older cars are obsolete will be so out dated, you will not be able to get them serviced in the 50 or so years from now, but the old cars of today? in 50-100 years from now? are so simple there will always be someone around that will be able to keep them running! Want some proof? just look at some of the fancy cars made in the 80-80's, with some of the braking systems and computer systems in them, and like the electronic dashboard in the 85Buick Riviera when those systems go down, you can not get them replaced now, never mind in 50 years! The only older 60's car I have ever worked on that I could not fix, was the 66-68 Dodge Charger a friend of mine has, and the dash board lights are some kind of electronic glowing type of needles and numbers, that uses a transformer of sorts, and I could not find anyone, even a dealer that said they could get them to work! we eventually had to re do the whole dash with after market type of gauges so he could see them at night! Has anyone ever seen the lights I am talking about?

New cars have got some nice features, although you won't see me buying a truck with any of the gay seat warmers/coolers.

@Greg/Bvonscott/Tyler/SierraGS/Truckman/JZChev (basically all of the GM inside news one man band clan), nice but no cigar. You guys love to pimp GMC every chance you get in efforts to downplay Chevrolet's lack of pretty much anything you'd wish them deprived of.. I wouldn't be without heated or cooled seats. Call this Chevy guy gay I suppose. Or maybe we just demand higher standards. If I wanted a vehicle of any sorts without heated or cooled seats, I guarantee you I wouldn't pay more than 15-20k for it. And that's more than I'd pay for anything with a GMC logo. If we're going for 3 letters might as well go KIA.

Thats funny! Every person i know that has an Ecoboost has experienced this Problem.......... This "FIX" is to put a blockoff plate at the bottom of the intercooler.... I shall explain for everyone who doesnt understand what this means;

An Intercooler's job is the lower the air intake temperature creating a cooler more dense air mass for combustion allowing more fuel to be burned creating more power. An engine is simply an air pump. the more air you can compress and exhaust the more power it makes.........

EVERYONE that has an ecoboost should now file complaints with Ford that after installing said "blockoff plate" that now there is NO WAY the engine is S.A.E. rated 365 HP 420 lb. ft. of torque. what they have done is DECREASE THE EFFICIENCY OF THE INTERCOOLER which means a drop in power. THANKS FORD! LOL LOL WOW

@hemi lol
The F-150 Eco Boost is running at the limit of what the engine can handle reliably. The 3.5 Cyclone in the F-150 generates more power and torque than any other 3.5 Eco Boost fitted to other Fords.

I do know that Fiat with the Pentastar can only run up to a 3.2 with forced induction. This is only achievable with a modified block.

I think the 2.7 Eco Boost coming from Ford will address any reliability issues concerning the Eco Boost. Remember the Cyclone V6 wasn't initially designed to run forced induction, like the Pentastar (Phoenix).

But, when it is all said and done, Ford has done a great job with the Cyclone to do what it's doing.

I got the 5.0 V8 instead of the Eco-Boost cause of 2 reasons:
#1 The lead truck mechanic at a Ford Dealership told me every one they sold came back with problems.

#2 The Ford ESP Warranty does NOT cover the turbo 's and I don't want to be stuck with a $4000 repair bill when they need replaced.

Yea! The Eco-Boost does have much better performance than the 5.0 but the gas mileage was never as good as they claimed. If I owned one I would be mad as hell cause I'm not getting the 20+ MPG as Ford claimed it would get.

A new Ford truck is sold every 42 seconds; that is how often they fail.

The NHTSA will continue to give a "pass" to both Ford and GM as long as they can; after all that is their primary purpose.

@Hemi lol

I call BS to everyone you know with an Ecoboost having this issue. If you were that good of a truck salesman then wouldn't everyone you know be driving a Tundra?

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