How common are CVT problems... really?

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Tipit008
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How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by Tipit008 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:26 pm

I'm thinking of buying a 2007 Freestyle Limited with AWD.

I've been reading horror stories on the Net about CVT failures.

The only info I haven't been able to find, anywhere, is how frequent these problems are.

In other words, what percentage of Freestyles are affected by these transmission problems and failures ???

Is it just a few bad apples or do I have a 60% - 80% chance I'm going to soon get a CVT failure if I buy a Freestyle with 150k+ miles on it ???

Also, any signs to watch out for when buying a used Freestyle ?

Thanks for any info or suggestions.

Marc


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mmsstar
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by mmsstar » Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:57 pm

Statistically about the same as a normal tranny. A good part of the bad rap comes from improper fluid being added or the trans flushed with equipment used for normal transmissions.
Drove an 06 LTD FWD from July 08 to August 10, moved on to a 2011 Flex

Tipit008
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by Tipit008 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:07 pm

So, basically, I could buy a used 2007 Ford Freestyle AWD and, as long as regular maintenance was done, I'd be taking about the same risk as any other used car ??

By what I'm reading on the Net, I get the impression ALL the CVT's are bad or doomed to fail at any time ...???

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mmsstar
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by mmsstar » Sat Mar 10, 2018 4:09 pm

No one goes online to say there is nothing wrong with their car!
Drove an 06 LTD FWD from July 08 to August 10, moved on to a 2011 Flex

ajluzi
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by ajluzi » Sun Mar 11, 2018 5:18 pm

I think you need to see whether the car has had an issue before with the tranny and if it has been replaced. If not, My opinion is that it's a crapshoot. I have had dozens of cars that ran well in excess of 150,000, and this is the first car I have replaced a tranny in.

Currently, I have a 2006 with 249,000 miles. The original transmission malfunctioned at 92,000 due to a bad input shaft. I believe that THIS has been the issue with most of these transmissions, whether it was bad machining or plating of the shaft, I dont know, but it's clear that there were significant issues with this part. I had a Ford rebuild installed at the time and have driven 157,000 on it with no issues. I bought the rebuild from Ford because it came with a 100.000 warranty, so I got my money's worth on this

The motors on these cars are bulletproof. I have done nothing to the engine in all this time other than changing oil and filters every 3,000, and sparkplugs once at 100,000. I'm actually trying to kill it because I just want something different, but it just wont die! :)

Good luck with your decision

Tipit008
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by Tipit008 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:02 pm

Thanks for the input. The one I'm thinking of buying is a 2007 AWD that has about 125 000 miles (200 000 kilometres). The seller is the second or third owner and doesn't have a clue if the maintenance was correctly done since new. All he can tell me is: "It drives great with no issues!"...

I wouldn't pay much for it but I'm just wondering if the risk is worth it??

I may wait a bit, scrounge up enough money to get a 2008 - 2009 Taurus X that had the more conventional 6 speed AT.

ajluzi
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by ajluzi » Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:47 pm

I honestly think that is your best option. Otherthan that cvt, the car is great, so if you go with the taurus, you should be fine.
Good luck

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jas88
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by jas88 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:06 am

I have owned 2 Freestyles. On both, I replaced the HP filter and fluid myself every 50K miles. The first one, driven by my wife, went 235K before we sold it with no problems. The 2nd one, my current DD, went 160K before the CVT started making a loud growling noise. It worked fine otherwise. I replaced it with a used 6-speed from a Mercury Montego.

I think the thing about the CVT is that they don't fail any more often than a conventional auto trans, however, when they do fail, repair or replacement is VERY expensive because a) parts are high-dollar and b) almost nobody knows how to work on them. Therefore the typical "repair" is complete replacement.
2006 SE Silver w/Slate cloth

Tipit008
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by Tipit008 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:18 am

Thanks for the useful info. So it's possible to change the CVT with a conventional AT ???

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jas88
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by jas88 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:25 am

So it's possible to change the CVT with a conventional AT ???
This is the most exhaustive compilation of failures and successes on the subject I have found:

viewtopic.php?t=6305

I have personally converted 2 this way and both are on the road today.

Spoiler alert - you cannot keep AWD if you do this conversion.
2006 SE Silver w/Slate cloth

PBblaster83
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Re: How common are CVT problems... really?

Post by PBblaster83 » Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:22 pm

So, I just bought an 06 Freestyle from an individual, I didn't do EXTENSIVE research about Freestyle problems just figured buying a used vehicle was a toss-up and I would just look and see, but we were driving home when it started having transmission problems. It looked like the fluid had been overfilled by x3. I changed the High pressure filter, looked like nobody had done anything with that, and flushed/refilled. Talked to some transmission shops, about diagnosing and repair.

What are the most common issues with the CVT? I keep getting the "Throttle Position Sensor" light come on with CEL? I haven't pulled any codes, yet. What are the most price friendly options for repair?

Thanks!

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