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Ford Focus Care & Maintenance



  • I'm not trying to be trite, but the owner's manual for your car is the best place to look for a maintenance schedule. There's also plenty of room to make notes about what was done.
  • kevmkevm Posts: 5
    Any one having a problem with the chip key anti theft system is it possible to have it deactivated
  • I have an 05 SES wagon / auto. After 4000km / 2500mi, I just checked after a trip yesterday which was 400km/250mi of which it was 90% hwy driving at 100 kph / 60 mph. By my calculations I am getting 8.25 l/km or 34 miles per gallon.

    I believe this car should be getting up to 6.75 l/km or 42 mpg. Should I be concerned, or will this improve in time? And if so, when?


  • Doesn't anyone have their owners' manual/maintenance booklet? It spells out what and when for hard driving and regular driving by years and miles. If you bought your car new you MUST have it. that's part of the new car. Not an option, or an accessory. If you bought it used, a lot of times the books get trashed during the clean up, or because the used car guys don't want to deal with them. They can also provide a history of what has been done to the car - oil changes, tire warranties, alignments, batteries, etc.
  • Your wagon with auto transmission has an EPA rating of 32 mpg highway. You probably won't get much better than 34 without a tailwind. One trip using a 1/2 tank of gas is not enough to get a good number for fuel economy, but is an encouraging spot check if you calculated it properly.
  • Oldsven:

    Thank you for your reply. Sorry, I should have clarified. The figure of 42 mpg highway, is for an Imperial gallon which is about 20% larger than a US gallon. This translates to approximately 6.7 litres per 100Km, which is what the EPA highway rating for my car is supposed to be.

    I was just curious as to when I can expect this type of fuel economy.
  • I think the highway EPA rating for your car is 7.3 L/100Km. Gas mileage in winter, depending on how cold it is in your part of Canada, could easily be 0.5 L/100 km worse. I've seen other postings talk about 5000 mi breakin periods, but I had thought that was more of an issue 20 years ago when tolerances were considerably looser. I have a ZX5 SE on order in the Northern US and am certainly hoping to get the EPA ratings. I'd really hate it if I didn't improve on the 28-30 mpg my Concorde has gotten over the past 260k miles. Good luck.
  • I have a 2003 Focus ZX3, which I love and have had no problems with....except for now. My cruise control will not work in the cold weather. I do not have a garage so the car is outside. I recently had it in for regular maintainence and of course they couldn't find any problem with the cruise because it was inside getting warm. I'm over my warranty and want to know if anyone else has experienced this problem before I take it back to the dealership.
  • I have a 2000 Focus SE. The other day after I was done doin my runnin around when I got home and turned my car off I heard my car leaking when I looked it was my antifreeze on the driveway so I popped the hood and noticed that the cap of my overflow tank was sorta knocked off and the antifreeze was on top of the tank. My car was not overheated. So I topped up the fluids(from the min to max line)not that much leaked out I guess it sounded like alot though. This is not the first time is has ever did this there was one other time. I have to go out of town in a couple weeks and I'm sorta freakin out it will do this again. Could it just be my cap was screwed on properly? Plz help. What should I do
  • jhart1jhart1 Posts: 16
    IF you are SURE the fan(s) are working and the water pump is turning and the hoses aren't collapsing and the thermostat is working then replace the radiator cap on the front top of the radiator with a GOOD cap from Ford or NAPA. Other than that you could have a leaking head gasket and a new cap won't make any difference.
  • hemmihemmi Posts: 4
    I have an 2002 which at about 40,000 miles started have creaking, squeeKing noise at slow speed when turning or pulling into my driveway. I fixed it by lubricating all the rubber bushings in the rear suspension with brake fluid. (I had done this previously on older cars with 100K or more miles.) It works.
    The rubber begins to harden and make noise which you can only hear inside the car at low speed, and when the suspension is being 'exercised.'
    Brake fluid has rubber lubricants. I put a small amount ins a small jar and use a small paintbrush to apply to all rubber bushing, gromments and other parts in suspension.
  • hemmihemmi Posts: 4
    My electric door locks quit working. The remote seems to still work in that it will cause the parking lights to flash but no response from the door locks. Owners Guide says the electric door locks are controlled by fuse 63, which is on the back of fuse panel.Searching with a hand mirror and light, I can't find. The Repair manual doesn't offer any help but talks a lot about the GEM (General Electronic Module) being involved in the door locks. Can't locate the GEM either.

    Anyone know?
  • Well, I didn't buy the car new, it's not in the glove box, there is an owner's manual that tells where the door locks are, where the oil stick is, but doesn't mention (that I can find) how often. It does refer me to the 'Maintenance Manual' but I don't have one. I couldn't find one on the internet either. Stumped here.
  • Found the answer!! For anyone else who needs the info - go to and you can download a maintenance manual. No it is NOT in the Owner's book.
  • Can anyone on here tell me the best way to change the "dealer maintenance only" or so called "permanent" air filter & spark plugs?.......I'd like to do this myself since I've always done simple things like this myself. I havn't read any threads on this topic at all! I went looking for the air filter and it looks as if it's located in the lower portion of the left front fender. Tried to take the spark plugs out and there is a spring thing going all the way down to them. Looks as if you have to take the valve cover off (at the very least) to get at them.
    Thanks in advance for any and all help.
  • focusintexas,
    What model of focus do you have?
    I have a similar noise when I turn left. I did a search for the bearing recall for the 2000-02. I could not find it. All I found was the back latch recall.
  • The moter in my back window also went out last year some time. I have over 75K right now, it may have been just over 50K. I thougt it was a fluke, I just bought the part and put it in myself. It wasn't that hard.
  • I have a 2003 base focus automatic. What kind of noise do you hear when you turn left? For bearings, I did not even rely on the recall, I went to an O'Reilly auto shop and bought a set of front and rear bearings. Now my car is quiet on the road. It's perfect. For the creaking sound, I still hear it and seems to come from the rocker panel.
  • I've had numerous problems with my Focus.
    Windshield wipers, (not working right)
    Cruise control, (not working at all)
    horn, (not working)
    cigarette lighter plug (broke apart the first time I tried to use it)
    ignition key cylinder (caused electrical short)
    trunk latch assembly (sticking)
    new trunk latch assembly (more sticking)
    cigarette lighter plug fuse (blown)
    All that is "so far" after 14 months of ownership.
    With 14 weeks remaining on the b2b warranty. everything is
    operating correctly. Fingers are crossed. :confuse:
  • My car stalled the other day when I came to an abrupt stop. I have a 2001 focus SE. It has 42,000 miles on it.

    I took it to Aamco as I don't trust my local ford place (i have repeatedly taken my car there and it is rarely improved by their quite expensive service.) However, I am sorely regretting this decision.

    I somehow got conned into spending $2,750 on having my transmission rebuilt. Apparently not only did I need the $1500 repair kit (plus $480 just for them to take out the transmission to diagnose the problem) i apparently also needed various hard parts including a new torque converter.

    I know nothing about cars, so I haven't the foggiest notion of what a torque converter does, or how I could possibly need one after only 42,000, let alone all the other stuff. Does this actually seem reasonable?

    I know i'm out of warranty, but if the transmission is defective surely there should be some sort of recourse?

    Anyway, if anyone who knows stuff about transmissions (as well as the relative price of fixing one) and could explain this to me... I just get a bad feeling about all of it, as if my ignorance on the issue is being used against me... so HELP?

  • erickrgmerickrgm Posts: 1
    OK caroledrake
    I hope this info will help you, maybe late but will help you in other matters, in the site you can find owner's manuals for all Ford models, Regards.
  • wtavcarwtavcar Posts: 3
    My Brother-in-law has a 2000 Focus SE (Ford 2.0L w/auto). He is having bizarre problem with his transmission. The car has only 45k km.

    When he is cruising along (about 50km (30MPH), and steps on the gas to activiate the kick-down (passing, etc..), the transmission starts slipping, much like a finished clutch in a standard shift. If he backs off, it eventually grabs again. The car was used in city for awhile so unknown when it appeared. Now it is getting highway useage. If the kickdown is done at highway speeds it works OK.

    The tranny was brought in to Ford (which overhauled the tranny). It is still doing it. They even changed the car computer. They (FORD dealer) are stumped. It did not do this before. Also went to try a used 2001 to see if it was normal but is behaved OK.

    Any suggestions? The car had the tranny overhaul done in the final days of the extended warranty. :(
  • markus5markus5 Posts: 102
    :( On my 2004 zts (automatic tranny) I had always noticed rusting and an unusual ware pattern. although it did pass state inspection a couple of months ago.
    Have there been problems with premature rotor failure on these cars?
    I do not do not live in a mountainous area.
  • mazda6iguymazda6iguy Posts: 365
    My 2002 Ford Focus radio antenna was unscrewed and stolen. Before I spend time calling a bunch of dealers, what is the price for a replacement?
  • Mine disappeared a month ago..I bought one for $8.48 including sales tax at NAPA. It is a universal model comes with several adaptors. I did not need any of the adaptors..
  • jack526jack526 Posts: 1
    I have a 2003 Ford Focus and have had the ignition replace once by Cowboy in Atlanta, haven't had any problems since. But on yesterday, I'm driving along and my steering wheel is practically falling off, it is so loose that I'm afraid it will fall into my lap. I went to Firestone with the car and they recommended that I take it to the dealer, which I will do first thing tomorrow. I will also contact Ford about this issue, as well as a local reporter here in Atlanta, (they seem to thrive on problems). Whenever I see that Ford commercial going on about customer service and safety, I just scream at the television, what a bunch of BS!!! Oh, and my trunk, just opens up whenever it feels like it. That I can almost live with, but I don't think I can make it without a steering wheel. Any answers please let me know.
  • jeromebjeromeb Posts: 31
    An update ... With one week remaining on the b2b warranty, it's in the shop for warranty replacement of the power window control module, rebuild of the transaxle, and body work.
    The body work is pursuant to being rear-ended by a hummer.

    It's strange to say that I owe my life to a car that has so many problems. So, I won't say it. The hummer was going 3 mph.

    The transaxle overhaul was a replacement of a faulty design. It's not been recalled as a safety issue. The performance indicator was that on 2 occasions at the transition to 4th gear, the car "jerked", as if abruptly losing force to the wheels.

    The power window control module stopped operating one of the windows, so I pushed harder, and pushed the button assembly through the door handle.

    I think they're going to keep it until the b2b warranty expires.
  • oily_ragsoily_rags Posts: 6
    Hello. I had a leak on my for focus setec se. It was made in 2002, but sold as a 2003 model. The leak was fixed as I understand by sealing the outside, and putting a sealer INSIDE the A/C system. It was cold for 1 day and now it's barely cold at all. somewhat "Cool" would be a better description of the air coming out of the vents. Also, when I am in neutral or stopped the car seems to rev more when the a/c is on, than before being fixed. It revs up to 1000 rpm or slightly more even sometimes evert 3 or 4 seconds and lasts only a second before the revs drop off. It didn't used to do this.
    I'm just trying to get an understanding of what's happening. My mechanic suspecs that the sealer he put in the a/c took up the room the freon needed when he filled it. He told me it took only 15 min to refill the freon when it normally takes 30 min. I'm gonna take it back to him to check out but I wanted to see if any mechanics out there know if this is actually the proble. My mechanic said he would take a look at it and refill the freon. What worrys me more is the increased revving by the compressor.
  • 0311vn0311vn Posts: 48
    I recently drove round trip from San Diego to Detroit and had two unexpected problems to repair en route. First, the 01 Focus developed a coolant leak at 62K that turned out to be a crack thermostat housing, so I was told by a Ford dealer in Mich. To replace that it cost me $230.

    Then in Colorado the Focus began to run hot at low rpm. When it came close to red lining I turned the heater on in 90F temps and raced the engine in neutral at a stop light.

    I took it to a Ford dealer and was told a resistor had gone bad in a radiator fan. To replace the radiator fan assembly it cost me $670.

    I don't have a problem paying to repair a car, and will go to a dealer when necessary to do so. But my question here is, isn't it abnormal for said items on my Focus to go bad with on 60K on the car?

    I'm curious if there is a car website that gives the average milage for part failures on cars.

    Anyone had said problems on a Focus at 60Kish?
  • bravobrobravobro Posts: 1

    I drive a 2001 Ford Focus LX Saloon, with a 1.6litre 16valve Zetec SE engine.

    This is the first car I've owned thats had proper air conditioning, and now its got to the summer I'm starting to use it. Thing is, it doesnt seem to do very much at all. It doesnt seem any colder than having the ordinary fan on. On a hot day, it isnt until you've been driving for about 25mins that you actually get any cool air. Even then its not cold. So you have to have open windows instead.

    Any ideas as to why this is? I've heard people talk about getting their air con 'charged'. What does this entail and would it help me? Is it an expensive proceedure?

    Appreciate any help you can offer.
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