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Ford C-Max

dingy flat towing accessory mode

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8 replies to this topic

#1 afjet

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 12:24 PM

Does anyone hace any experience with the Ford C-Max?  I am trying to make sure I have it in accessory mode but the manual is not very clear on how to do this with a keyless mode.


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#2 Bluebirds

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Posted 20 November 2013 - 09:16 PM

Hi--typical of other manuals, Ford C-Max manual is not correct. We towed a 2013 C-Max SEL hybrid 14 months. Repeated dead battery problems unrelated to towing .. Evidently parasitic drains that Ford as of a 3 weeks ago at least, has not resolved. We had multiple wrecker tows, replaced 12v batteries multiple times. We gave up due to unreliability. Traded the car and replaced with Jeep.

We found the correct steps to set for " recreational towing behind a MH" at www.fordcmaxhybridforum.com -- you should find what you need there and any updates that may be posted after we traded out of our C-Max.

Nice mileage BTW, just got tired of being left stranded ! (4 times towed for dead battery that was NOT while rv'g--so trickle charge line would not fix inherent parasitic drain... Sadly.)


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#3 billbaldwin

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:09 PM

I think it's more than a towing thing.

Twice I've ask to take a test drive at a Ford Dealer and had to wait for a jump????

 

bill


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#4 stevislick

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Posted 27 March 2014 - 06:07 PM

We have had issues towing the 2014 Ford C-MAX SEL. After towing, a warning light comes on saying to service the Advanced Traction Control. Ford engineering has "verbally" told me to drive a mile or two at 12 mph or greater and the warning light will clear itself. The warning does go away but stays with the computer for dealers to see. We did take it to a dealer and the error code was still in the computer. The dealer had no clue and no fix from Ford. Until this problem showed up, Ford had never seen this problem. I am waiting for something in writing from Ford stating that we will be safe and no damage will happen to the car as a result of towing. No letter yet. I should note that I have worked with Ford engineering to help solve the problem. They were able to replicate the problem with the 2013 and 2014 SEL on an anemometer. The issue only shows up on SEL models with push button start and the full option packages.

 

As far as battery life, we added a trickle charger powered from the coach. Works great. You will note in Fords manual for the C-MAX, it states to use a trickle charger on the car if not being driven for more than 30 days.

 

Finally, we do love the car. Ford assures us that they are working on a software fix for the warning system.


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#5 jdirden

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 01:52 AM

 

We have had issues towing the 2014 Ford C-MAX SEL. After towing, a warning light comes on saying to service the Advanced Traction Control. Ford engineering has "verbally" told me to drive a mile or two at 12 mph or greater and the warning light will clear itself. The warning does go away but stays with the computer for dealers to see. We did take it to a dealer and the error code was still in the computer. The dealer had no clue and no fix from Ford. Until this problem showed up, Ford had never seen this problem. I am waiting for something in writing from Ford stating that we will be safe and no damage will happen to the car as a result of towing. No letter yet. I should note that I have worked with Ford engineering to help solve the problem. They were able to replicate the problem with the 2013 and 2014 SEL on an anemometer. The issue only shows up on SEL models with push button start and the full option packages.

 

As far as battery life, we added a trickle charger powered from the coach. Works great. You will note in Fords manual for the C-MAX, it states to use a trickle charger on the car if not being driven for more than 30 days.

 

Finally, we do love the car. Ford assures us that they are working on a software fix for the warning system.

 

Hi -- I find your post both interesting and scary, since we just (3-7-14) bought a loaded 2014 C-MAX SEL with push button start. We bought it primarily for it's alleged flat towing capability.

 

I sold our previous tow car/tow bar and will be taking our C-MAX to Camping World this week to have a tow bar installed. Now I'm having second thoughts!

 

I would like to ask you a few questions if you don't mind:

 

1. Do you put the ignition in the "Off" position when you tow? On page 183 of my Owner's Manual, it first says to "place the ignition in the off position." Then, after explaining what to do at the beginning of each day, it says to place the ignition "in the accessory position." I think this is probably a typo.

 

2. Why do you connect a trickle charger to the C-MAX while towing? Does the 12 volt battery go dead?

 

3. Where in the manual did you find the information about using a trickle charger? What kind of trickle charger do you use, and how do you connect it from your RV to the C-MAX?

 

4. Do you know if I could use a battery disconnect switch on the C-MAX while towing, like I did on the Saturn tow car?

 

Please keep us posted on what you find out about the Advanced Traction Control warning light.

 

Thanks!


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#6 stevislick

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Posted 01 April 2014 - 09:03 AM

Hi JDIRDEN.

 

I'll try to answer your questions.

 

1. If you have the SEL with all the bells and whistles, there is NO ACCESSORY position. Only on and off. After starting the car and running for about a minute, place the car in neutral and press the on off button to turn the vehicle off WITHOUT placing your foot on the break. And you are right, the manual needs to be revised.

2.  If you tow the car for 4 to 5 hours, your battery will probably be dead. You can not disconnect the battery. You will have to reprogram and reset everything if you do (pages 218 and 219) (pages 236 and 237).

3. Trickle charger recommended by Ford Engineering. I use a 12V charger (very small) with two fuses connected to the coach via the cord.

 

Ford engineering will be looking at the car in about a week. We have towed it 3 times without problems (except for the warning light that goes off after driving a very short distance).


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#7 kfeickert1

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 04:32 PM

The tow bar system from Unified recommended adding a power lead from the motorhome to keep the battery charged. Do you see any problem with this as opposed to the trickle charger?

The power lead worked well when I towed the Jeep with the Unified braking system.


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#8 wolfe10

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 11:24 PM

kfeickert1,

 

Welcome to the FMCA Forum.

 

A charge wire from coach to toad is a very acceptable solution.

 

Use large gauge wire for less voltage drop.  Many use a relay at the coach battery end triggered ON by an ignition source.  And positively have a fuse at both battery connections.


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#9 jdirden

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Posted 17 June 2014 - 06:01 PM

 

We have had issues towing the 2014 Ford C-MAX SEL. After towing, a warning light comes on saying to service the Advanced Traction Control. Ford engineering has "verbally" told me to drive a mile or two at 12 mph or greater and the warning light will clear itself. The warning does go away but stays with the computer for dealers to see. We did take it to a dealer and the error code was still in the computer. The dealer had no clue and no fix from Ford. Until this problem showed up, Ford had never seen this problem. I am waiting for something in writing from Ford stating that we will be safe and no damage will happen to the car as a result of towing. No letter yet. I should note that I have worked with Ford engineering to help solve the problem. They were able to replicate the problem with the 2013 and 2014 SEL on an anemometer. The issue only shows up on SEL models with push button start and the full option packages.

 

As far as battery life, we added a trickle charger powered from the coach. Works great. You will note in Fords manual for the C-MAX, it states to use a trickle charger on the car if not being driven for more than 30 days.

 

Finally, we do love the car. Ford assures us that they are working on a software fix for the warning system.

 

We just got home from our first trip towing our new 2014 Ford C-Max Hybrid. It's a fully loaded SEL with push button start.

 

Sure enough, the "Service Advance Trac" alert light was on when we stopped the first day -- about 300 miles. It went out after driving less than a mile. Same thing on the trip back home.

 

I installed a 12 gauge charge line, with an ignition-activated isolator relay and 15 amp fuses on both ends. It works great -- no dead battery issues.

 

Have you heard from Ford regarding a fix for the "Service Advance Trac" light?


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