Legally reviewed by: Jessica Anvar Stotz, JD, MBA
The Ford F-150 may face an issue concerning the unintended activation of its parking brake. This concern pertains to approximately 870,701 Ford pickups spanning the model years from 2021 to 2023. As outlined in the recall report submitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
As of July 11, the NHTSA had received 918 reports regarding the braking issue- among these reports, 299 individuals reported instances of unintended parking brake activation, with 19 of these occurrences happening while the vehicle was in motion.
Ford brake service mode activation, follow these instructions:
- Set your vehicle’s ignition to ON
- Release the electronic parking brake
- Press and hold the accelerator pedal and place the electronic parking brake switch in RELEASE. Continue to hold the accelerator pedal and electronic parking brake switch
- Set your vehicle’s ignition to OFF then set the ignition to ON within 5 seconds. Continue holding the accelerator pedal and the electronic parking brake switch
- Set the vehicle’s ignition to OFF then release both the accelerator pedal and electronic parking brake switch
Keep in mind that these operations will deactivate the brake system, preventing parking brake application until service has been completed and service mode has been deactivated. The yellow electronic parking brake indicator will be illuminated, and “Maintenance Mode” will display in the vehicle’s message center.
What causes the Ford F150 parking brake malfunction?
The root of the problem lies in the rear axle wiring harness contacting the rear axle housing. Over time, this contact can lead to the deterioration of tape and circuit insulation, exposing the wiring beneath and potentially resulting in a short circuit. Drivers of affected pickups may notice the illumination of a parking brake warning light and receive an instrument-panel message indicating a problem.
In February, Ford initiated an inquiry in response to customer complaints regarding unexpected parking brake issues with their 2021 F-150 trucks. Examination of warranty claims and field reports revealed instances of wiring damage affecting the rear electric parking brake circuits.
Engineers subsequently discovered that the chafing of the rear axle wiring harness assembly had the potential to wear through protective abrasion-resistant tape and circuit insulation. This process could ultimately expose the copper wiring, leading to the grounding of circuits on the rear axle housing.
How do I know if my Ford experiences the F150 parking brake malfunction?
If your F-150 falls within the model years 2021-2023, it is within the recall range, however, there are specific indicators to watch out for if your vehicle has the F150 recall parking brake malfunction:
- Service Message: Keep an eye on your vehicle’s instrument panel for any service messages related to the parking brake. In the case of the F-150 parking brake issue, you may receive a service message alerting you to a problem with the parking brake system.
- Warning Light: Look for the illumination of the parking brake warning light on your dashboard. This light typically appears when there’s an issue with the parking brake, and it may be accompanied by a corresponding instrument-panel message.
- Check for Recalls: Visit the official website of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or Ford’s official website to check if your specific F-150 VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) is subject to any recalls or service bulletins related to the parking brake malfunction.
If you suspect that you have any issues or receive service messages related to the parking brake, you should contact Ford’s customer service or visit a Ford dealership promptly for inspection and potential repairs.
How will Ford fix the F150 recall for the parking brake?
Earlier this year in September 2023, Ford sent out recall letters to address the parking brake malfunction issue in Ford F-150 trucks. Affected vehicles will undergo inspection of their rear axle wiring harnesses at Ford dealerships.
If the abrasion tape covering the wire bundle shows signs of wear-through, a new service harness will be installed. In cases where wear-through is not observed, a protective tie strap and tape wrap will be added. Ford F-150 owners seeking further information can contact Ford at 866-436-7332 and reference recall number 23S35.
What should I do if I experience F150 parking brake or other issues?
Here are some steps we recommend if you experience braking system issues or other problems in your Ford F-150:
- Safety First: If you experience any sudden or severe issues while driving, prioritize safety. Pull over to a safe location, turn on your hazard lights, and, if necessary, call for roadside assistance.
- Contact Ford: Reach out to Ford’s customer service at 866-436-7332 and mention the specific issue you are facing. They can guide you on the next steps and whether your vehicle is affected by any recalls or service bulletins.
- Consult Your Owner’s Manual: Your vehicle’s manual can often provide guidance on troubleshooting common issues and performing basic maintenance tasks.
- Visit a Ford Dealership: If your vehicle is under warranty or part of a recall, schedule an appointment with your nearest Ford dealership for a professional inspection and any necessary repairs.
- Document the Issue: Keep records of your interactions with Ford, service appointments, and any repairs conducted. This documentation may be essential if you experience recurring issues or need to seek legal recourse.
- Stay Informed: Stay updated on any recalls, service bulletins, or safety alerts related to your F-150 model. You can check Ford’s official website or NHTSA’s website.
- Explore Legal Options: If you have repeatedly experienced issues that remain unresolved, you may want to consult with a legal professional who specializes in consumer protection or automotive issues.
Addressing issues promptly not only ensures your safety but also helps maintain the longevity and performance of your Ford F-150.
Still need help? Call the Lemon Law Experts Now!
Still need help with your Ford F-150 parking brake or any other automotive issues? The Lemon Law Experts may be able to help you. If you have presented your Ford F-150 for repeat repairs to an authorized Ford dealership for the same or similar issue, it might be considered a lemon under California law.
If your case qualifies, our team can help you obtain a replacement vehicle, cash compensation, or a lemon law refund. Contact the Lemon Law Experts today to learn more.