When I turned on the AC for the first time this year it made a loud grinding noise for a few seconds, then never cooled. Took it in to the dealership to check and for regular 45,000 mile maintenance.
Dealer called and gave the following description of the problem ..."in the AC dryer there is a filter bag with "little blue balls" of dessicant. It seems that it is a very common problem that these filter bags burst and flood the entire AC system with the balls (aka "debris") which causes all the parts to fail and or clog. Many of the parts can't be effectively flushed so the have to be replaced." The cost to replace the entire AC system (all valves, tubes, hoses, evaporator, compressor, condenser, accumulator, dryer, etc.) came to $2,022.65. This dryer unit that is causing all the problems is a non-servicable unit and is in no way affected by regular maintenance, and there is nothing that can be done to prevent a failure.
The cost of this part alone at national parts stores (Advance/Autozone, etc.) is around $30.00. This very inexpensive part however causes extensive damage to very expensive parts. I would call this a "manufacturers defect". Also the replacement dryer used in the $2,022.65 repair is identical to the one that failed.
Ford has had many complaints about this, but "not on a scale where we're willing to look into this". On a vehicle with so few miles Ford is definitely losing customers for simply failing to design a better filter for a $30.00 part.
Product or Service Mentioned: Ford Repair.
Monetary Loss: $2023.