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Ford Issues Safety Recall Over Windshields, Takata Airbags For Some Older Ford Trucks As 2021 F-150 Deals With Battery Drain Issue, Complaints Of Rust

Ford Motor Company has issued some recalls related to well-known Takata air bag issues, along with a new safety issue related windshield adhesion on 2020 and 2021 Ford F-Series vehicles. Additionally some owners of the new 2021 F-150 are complaining about rust and also a known battery drain issue.

About this time last year, a story broke about a $400 refund issued to some owners of 2017-2019 Ford F-150 trucks over class action lawsuit settlement. The issue pertained to malfunctioning door locks, resulting in door locks freezing.

Ford issued recalls pertaining to this issue that applied to some F-150 as well as some Ford Ranger trucks too.

Over the last couple of days, Ford Motor Company announced a few more recalls this time unrelated to the door lock issue. The most safety recalls relate to an issue with windshield adhesion as well as another very minor one related to some trucks that might still have the controversial Takata airbags.

Takata airbags were deemed hazardous and unsafe in all vehicles, affecting many various makes and models from numerous auto manufacturers. Let’s look at the current recalls and also try to get a handle on a few of the nuisance issues going on with the current generation Ford F-150, as some owners have complained about rust issues and then there’s also a known battery drain issue.

First, let’s look at the known recalls.

2020 Ford F-150 Safety compliance recall for select 2020-21 Ford F-Series vehicles for windshield adhesion
Affected vehicles do not comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards because the front windshields are inadequately bonded to the vehicle body structure. In the event of a crash, the windshield may not adequately stay in place, which may increase the risk of occupant injury.
This action affects 79,017 vehicles in the U.S. and federal territories, 6,986 in Canada and 1,347 in Mexico, including:
• 2021 Ford F-150 vehicles built at Dearborn Truck Plant from Oct. 27, 2020, to Feb. 3, 2021
• 2020-21 Ford Super Duty vehicles built at Kentucky Truck Plant from Oct. 13, 2020, to Jan. 23, 2021

Ford is not aware of any accidents or injuries related to this condition.
Owner notifications will begin the week of April 6. Dealers will remove and reinstall the windshield using standard service procedures. The Ford reference number for this recall is 21C06.

Safety recall for select 2020 Ford F-Series Super Duty vehicles with 6.7-liter engines for labels with incorrect payload information
Affected vehicles display overstated payload capacity values on the tire and loading information label, overstated accessory reserve capacity values on the safety certification label, and overstated weight values on the truck camper loading documentation. If the vehicles are loaded to the payload stated on the tire and loading information label, they may exceed the gross vehicle weight rating or gross axle weight rating. This may result in tire loading beyond rated capacity, suspension overload and increased stopping distance, which could increase the risk of a crash.

This action affects 9,979 2020 Ford F-Series Super Duty vehicles in the U.S. and federal territories and 1,750 in Canada. They were built at Kentucky Truck Plant from May 13, 2019 to, Sept. 19, 2020.

Ford is not aware of any accidents or injuries related to this condition.
Owner notifications will begin the week of March 22. Dealers will replace the tire and loading information label, safety certification label and, if needed, the truck camper loading document. The Ford reference number for this recall is 21S06.

Takata air bagSafety recall for select vehicles that may have had obsolete Takata service parts installed in collision and theft repairs after the Takata recall was completed
Ford identified that certain Takata airbag modules were not purged from service stock after the parts for the permanent service fix became available. Following extensive investigation and tracing, Ford could not account for some of the obsolete Takata service parts, indicating they may have been installed on vehicles as part of collision or theft repairs.
Ford is not aware of any reports of accident or injury related to this issue. This recall involves two distinct vehicle populations:
Population 1
• Ford used dealer records to identify 1,117 vehicles with collision repairs that may have been done with an obsolete service part after the Takata recall was completed. This involves 1,067 vehicles in the U.S. and federal territories, 49 in Canada and one in Mexico.
• The group comprises certain 2004-11 Ford Ranger, 2005-14 Ford Mustang, 2006 Ford GT, 2008-12 Ford Fusion, 2009-11 Mercury Milan, 2010-12 Lincoln MKZ, 2007-10 Ford Edge and 2007-10 Lincoln MKX vehicles.
• Dealers will inspect the driver or passenger airbag inflator or module and replace, if necessary.
Population 2
• Ford was unable to locate 45 single-stage inflators that are compatible with 2004-06 Ford Ranger vehicles. It is possible that these obsolete Takata service parts were installed for repairs after collision damage or theft.
• This population involves 2004-06 Ford Ranger vehicles that had the Takata recall permanent repair performed before the service parts were purged, including 144,340 in the U.S. and federal territories, 8,762 in Canada and five in Mexico.
• At the request of the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Ford is issuing a safety recall for all 153,107 of these vehicles, notifying owners that they can visit their dealer for an inspection and, if necessary, an airbag inflator replacement.

Customer notifications will begin the week of March 8. The Ford reference number for this recall is 21S05.

2021 Ford F-150 family2021 Ford F-150 Battery Drain and Rust Issues
Unrelated to the new hybrid PowerBoost power plant, some early delivery models of the 2021 Ford F-150 are experiencing issues with dead batteries on their 12-volt engine battery. The trucks are going into “deep sleep mode.” This story was first reported by the Detroit Free Press after noticing some complaints in the forum.

"A population of vehicles built before we began shipping to dealers require a software update to prevent batteries from losing their charge," said Ford spokesman Said Deep told the Free Press. "Our dealers were notified last week and customer letters will go out next week as part of a customer satisfaction program for this matter."

Ford denied knowing the root cause of this issue or whether it was limited to a small batch of trucks.

In the same f150gen14 forum, some owners equally complained about rust around the rear axle and differentials. I asked Ford about this issue and this was their official statement:

“While some F-150 underbody steel components may show signs of surface rust, this will have no impact on part performance or life,” said Ford’s Dawn McKenzie.

With Ford announcing over-the-air updates for the 2021 F-150, issues like this cannot be fixed over the air. Additionally, any issues, even minor ones like this in the early deliveries can have damaging affects. However, it’s important to note none of the 14th-generation F-150s have faced any recalls and all of the noted issues have seemed to be isolated.

I want to hear from you if you’ve had to deal with any of these issues, especially if you have a 2021 F-150. Leave me your comment with your thoughts.

Jimmy Dinsmore has been an automotive journalist for more than a decade and been a writer since the high school. His Driver’s Side column features new car reviews and runs in several newspapers throughout the country. He is also co-author of the book “Mustang by Design” and “Ford Trucks: A Unique Look at the Technical History of America’s Most Popular Truck”. Also, Jimmy works in the social media marketing world for a Canadian automotive training aid manufacturing company. Follow Jimmy on Facebook, Twitter, at his special Ford F-150 coverage on Twitter and LinkedIn. You can read the most of Jimmy's stories by searching Torque News Ford for daily Ford vehicle report.


CL (not verified)    February 22, 2021 - 8:22PM

Recently bought a 2021 Ford F-150. We have a lot of rust on the rear axle and on some parts behind the rear tires. Basically the whole rear “pumpkin” is covered in rust. We have two recalls so far and looks like a 3rd with the windshield recall which was announced today. Nice truck but how is that rust going to be in the long term.

AL (not verified)    February 24, 2021 - 8:59PM

It is thing from Dawn McKenzie of Ford. Making dent on the body or scratches on the paint will have no impact on part performance or life too. Why don't you make every Ford like this? See if you can sell it. People paid over 50K are not expecting it to rust like that. It should not be like that even it is after 2 years, not to mention it happened when it delivered. I trust Ford as a big company will correct this issue. I am watching.

John B Myers (not verified)    March 3, 2021 - 5:56PM

Purchased a 2021 F150 Crewcab, new ,backed in driveway I had 30 total miles, next day my son sent me a link about rust issues, sure enough I climbed under and it was rusting all new metal. Looked just like pictures other guys posted. tells you to contact salesman who is to report to ford and get back with you, 2 nd day and i have not heard fro manager. Ford says if manager dont help contact the board of directors,tells you on web site how to do this.
I traded a 2012 supercab xlt f150 and i dont think it had that much rust on undercarrage.
We need to we all need to get together and demand a recall.

Jimmy Dinsmore    March 4, 2021 - 8:49AM

In reply to by John B Myers (not verified)

Recalls come through the government 90% of the time. Ford is not likely to voluntarily recall this. Especially at the early part of the launch/build. I do think it's an issue. Ford has been dismissive about the rust, brushing it aside that it was just cosmetic. To me, a new vehicle with only a little bit of mileage should not have rust issues.

M. Jenkins (not verified)    August 9, 2021 - 2:18PM

I purchased a new 2021 F150 Lariat sport (with 500 miles on it), I took delivery on 17 Jan. 2021. After our first wash at home, we found significant rust on the shock mounts, the rear diff. housing, rear wheel cylinder backing plates, etc.

A new vehicle with a cost of $60,000+ should definitely NOT have this issue. In fact we purchased a used 2018 that same day, which is a daily driver, and it has little to no rust. The new '21 is not driven in snow, it is not driven daily either. Unlike like my 1997 Thunderbird daily driver, with over 160,000 miles (and my 50 year limited edition Mustang GT with 23,000 miles), both of which have no rust.

Needless to say, we are a (multigenerational) loyal Ford family and we expect a resolution. I have contacted the selling dealer, Ted Britt. After 3 separate emails to department managers with no response, the general sales manager has recently replied and is working to set a service appointment for me. We're hoping for the best, time will tell.

Ford is clearly aware of this issue, per the media buzz. I suspect the factory closures, due to COVID, were a small part of the cause. Parts were likely not prepped and/or painted, then they sat to wait for assembly/installation, (possibly even outside, in the snowy, salty, MI winter weather). When the factory reopened it was likely a rush to get the trucks assembled and out the door. The bigger part of the problem was not taking time to address any issues after the shut down. I can only presume quality control simply looked the other way? This problem does not echo their, "Quality is job 1" statement of a few years back, is certainly not what one would expect for America's best selling truck, nor does it bode well for Ford's customer satisfaction.

Katherine Sather (not verified)    November 14, 2021 - 11:14AM

I purchased a new 2021 F150 hybrid in August. The truck is amazing, but at 3,589 miles, the battery is completely dead and requiring a jump. The FordPass app indicates the truck is in deep sleep mode. Phantom battery drain? Likely.