Back in May, Ford Motor Company issued a recall for select 2021 Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator models after 16 under hood fires plagued a handful of vehicles. The majority of those fires occurred in rental units, with most happening while the vehicles were parked and not running. Regardless, FoMoCo wasn’t able to immediately determine what was causing these fires, which were believed to originate in the rear of the engine compartment near the passenger side of the vehicle, and as a result, asked owners to park their vehicles outside and away from structures. Now, Ford has discovered a fix for this issue.
The automaker believes that the root cause of these fires stems from a change in manufacturing location by one of its suppliers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Printed circuit boards produced at this facility are uniquely susceptible to a high-current short and were supplied to The Blue Oval and installed in 2021 Ford Expedition and Navigator SUVs produced during the recall window.
To rectify this issue, dealers will inspect affected vehicles and look for melting damage on the battery junction box and will replace it if necessary. Additionally, dealers will remove the engine fan ground wire from the battery junction box in affected vehicles equipped with an 800-watt cooling fan system, which represents about one-third of recalled models. For the remaining affected vehicles equipped with a 700-watt cooling fan system, the repair is identical, except for the installation of an auxiliary box with a wire jumper. The parts needed for this repair are expected to be available in early September, and Ford is still advising owners to park their vehicles outside and away from structures until it can be completed.
Affected customers will be notified via FordPass today, with follow-up communication coming for customers of vehicles with 700-watt systems as soon as parts are available. Meanwhile, the number of fires has grown to 21 – 18 of which are rental vehicles – while the recall has expanded to include a total of 66,221 Expedition and Navigator SUVs build in the U.S. between July 27th, 2020 and Aug. 31st, 2021.
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