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Missfiring-flashing CEL

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5 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Raincity


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  • Location:Lower Mainland, B.C., Canada
  • Current Vehicle:2010 Flex Limited Ecoboost

Posted 05 September 2011 - 01:21 PM

Not sure if anyone else has had this issue but I'd thought I would share the experience.

Highway driving at average speed (90kph) and the passing lane opened up so I went WOT and within a few seconds I lost power and the check engine light came on. Backed out of the throttle, CEL went off and put my foot back into it. Now the CEL is flashing and it almost was like it went into limp mode, I could only get about 25% throttle before it bogged down. We were on holidays at the time so we stopped into the dealership in Salmon Arm, B.C.(great experience BTW with this dealership and the service guy(Brandon?). The codes were miss firing and a couple cylinders. They replaced all the plugs with a updated version he couldn't tell me the difference and a new software upgrade on the ECM. All under warranty. I did notice a few other incidents before this where there was a quick "miss" or hesitation when under WOT but it didn't seem to have enough regularity to take it to the guys at the dealership. And if there was no CEL I doubt it would have shown on a fault code. No mods to the flex and I run 91octane or better.

#2 OFFLINE   Flex42


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Posted 23 September 2011 - 08:27 PM

Though not exactly the same, I have had the engine miss-fire or knock when trying to accelerate from highway speeds at far less than WOT. This started at around 20,000 kms.
As soon as the miss or knock started I immediately backed off. Never did any dash alarms get illuminated, and the dealer never found a saved fault code.
I was running it on regular gas. I have since switched to mid-grade gas (91 octane) and the problem has not reoccured in 40,000 kms.

#3 OFFLINE   Rolpher


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  • Location:Philadelphia
  • Current Vehicle:2010 ford flex 2011 landrover

Posted 19 December 2011 - 12:39 PM

Not the fuel. There is a problem with spark plugs. You are dropping cylinders. Bring it in and have all 6 replaced.

#4 OFFLINE   Flexability


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Posted 27 February 2012 - 01:49 PM

Similar problems began for me last summer with my 2010 Flex Limited with ecoboost. At that time the mileage was in the upper 20,000's

The symptoms included a shuddering mis-fire and a noticeable drop in accelleration, not extreme but noticeable. Gas mileage also seemed to suffer, going from an average of 22-23 to 18-9 mpg.

I took it to a dealership and they replaced a fuel injector, but this did not fix the problem. Through the Fall of 2011 the shuddering symptoms continued, and the Check Engine Light began to come on.

After this happened a couple of times (because at first it would go off after a minute or two) I called the dealership (Andy Zeck Ford in Lansing/Leavenworth, KS) and they said this was a potentially serious malfunction. They asked me to bring the car in, and if I could, do this when the engine light had flashed on. I tried this after one event, but their diagnostic didn't show anything.

Later in the month, this happened again, on a Saturday morning, and the CEL light was staying on, so I drove to Zeck Ford and they put the diagnostic computer on the engine and it registered an event with the #3 coil, just like what was mentioned in another post. I shared this information (from the Forum) with them, and they checked it out and decided that the car needed an upgrade of spark plugs. New spark plugs are always nice and initially the horsepower felt strong and steady. But, before long the shuddering and engine light issue was back.

This didn't resolve the issue, and after mentioning the coil possibility on #3 cylinder they replaced that as well. Shuddering and CEL light continued

Now, I should mention that this can occur when I floor-it, and most often that was the case, but there have been other times when a mere solid or strong accelleration produced the same results.

Andy Zeck Ford and their service department has been great. They have checked back with me on each occasion to ask if the problem returned. In early February 2012 I received such a call and they asked me to bring the car in, with the intention of keeping it until the probelm was resolved. I was provided with a loaner and later a rental as they worked on the Flex for what amounted to two weeks.

Here is what was discovered in my Flex's case:

A few days were spent driving the car to get it to produce a shuddering/ CEL event. Not being completely predictable, this took several attempts and eventually they produced an event and began a diagnostic, running compression tests, electrical checks and so on.

Finally, after that was done they took the manifold off of the engine to replace another coil. With the top off the engine we were able to see the valves and it was eveident that the seals on a few were not good, so they ordered vallve seals and replaced the bad ones.

After two weeks they completed this work and also put in another fuel injector, and I got the car back.

The shuddering has completely ceased. The horsepower feels very close to what I remember when I first got the car. Gas mileage isn't greatly improved (but I've been told that winter blend gasoline will not produce great gas mileage). I'm not flooring it every chance I get, but I have done this several times at various speeds to see if anything runs amiss, so FAR real GOOD.

Tom in the service department has faithfully follwed up again and I am really happy to report that the car is running well. Tom told me that he believes at this time that the shuddering was still most likely a fuel injector, and probably not the coil. And, even though the valve seals were faulty on two cylinders, he didn't think that this was the cause of the CEL and shuddering problem.

I have been looking forward to writing this post to share with everyone who has had the problem, is having the problem or may someday have the same problem: so that you will know that your problem has happened to others, and that it IS flukey, and so you can share this information with your dealer's service department. Hopefully, this information will be of value for diagnostic purposes.

#5 OFFLINE   Raincity


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  • Location:Lower Mainland, B.C., Canada
  • Current Vehicle:2010 Flex Limited Ecoboost

Posted 05 March 2012 - 02:00 AM

Valve seals?!! yikes. Made my issue seem like a minor one in comparison. Glad you have yours all sorted out! It's nice to have a cooperative dealership and service people that will go above and beyond.

#6 OFFLINE   whitecar


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  • Location:rocklin ca
  • Current Vehicle:2012 ford flex

Posted 07 November 2014 - 06:49 PM

thinking my prob is limp mode , unhook batt to clear the comp ? help how do i get out of limp mode ??

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