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1.8 petrol - Speedo drops to zero & loss of power - AlanGowdy
Intermittent fault, Ford Focus 1.8 petrol engine. Occasionally the speedometer will abruptly drop to a zero reading while driving along, accompanied by an equally abrupt power loss of perhaps 30%. A couple of minutes later the speedo will begin working again and the power will pick up at the same time.
My wife (whose car it is) tells me that it has momentarily cut out completely on her several times too.

Incidentally, the car has always been prone to the well-known and infamous Focus power surge on upward gear changes and 2000 rpm 'idling' in slow moving traffic.

It's due for a service soon so I'd appreciate any advice that I could fire off at the service department. Thanks in anticipation.


SLT and classified using drop downs

Edited by Pugugly {P} on 07/10/2007 at 21:44

Ford Focus engine problem - GroovyChick{P}
I too have a 1.8 petrol focus. I experienced exactly the same problems about 18months ago now. I took it to my dealer who informed me that it was to do with the engine management system losing its memory.

It cost approx £78 for a diagnostic or they could just try and reprogramme it and hope that this worked. That was appox £35, I risked this option and touch wood all has been ok since.

Apparently this has been a problem with the 1.6 focus and the dealer was surprised it had happened to the 1.8. Suggest you book it in and hopefully it will be rectified like mine. I had to pay as mine is a 1999 'S' plate so was not covered by any warranty.

HTH

GC
Ford Focus engine problem - AlanGowdy
Great, thanks. Hopefully that will sort out the surging too.
Ford Focus engine problem - timp
Alan,

Your problem sounds like it could be related to the vehicle speed sensor. This sensor attached to the gearbox informs the speedometer and ECU of the vehicle's speed. If this were to fail, you would expect the speedometer to read zero and perhaps the ECU to be confused, causing the problem.

GroovyChick,

Did the re-programming also fix the 'power surge' and high-revs while idling problem that Alan describes? My 1.8 Focus has this 'issue' which, now I'm used to it, is really only an irritation, as it sounds like I'm revving my engine in impatience!

Interestingly, I used to drive a 1.8 Mondeo with an identical engine, which did not have this problem. I believe the only difference between them is the way the ECU is programmed. (I believe that more of the Focus's engine is made of aluminium instead of iron though). They both feel and sound very different despite being of similar mileages and ages.

Another, perhaps related, issue I have is jerky pick-up when lifting off and then accelerating in 5th gear. This went away immediately after the last service. It came back about 2 weeks later, just after filling up with cheap supermarket petrol and/or hot weather. I'll try running it low and filling up with Shell to see if it improves things.

Tim
Ford Focus engine problem - GroovyChick{P}
Tim,

Sorry I forgot to mention i did need a new speed sensor as well. The reprogramming did fix the surges as well.

GC
Ford Focus engine problem - AlanGowdy
Thanks again folks
Ford Focus engine problem - mikej
Hi - I came across this thread when searching for exactly the same problem (speedo dropping to zero) that was happening to my Focus, so it was good to reinforce my theory that the vehicle speed sensor was at fault.

I managed to fix it myself and thought it might be useful to let you know how to do it. However, I'd only recommend that you have a go yourself if you have a basic supply of tools and are used to crawling around under a car and can do it safely ! (NB. I did need some help at one stage to remove the retaining pin - see below)

Summary of problem : speedo drops to zero, for any length of time from a few seconds to a few minutes. This sometimes leads to loss of odometer reading (changes to dashes) and even complete loss of power/engine shutdown on a couple of occasions too.

You'll need to get a new vehicle speed sensor (mine was about £25 including VAT from a Ford dealer), axle stands and a few basic tools (pliers, mole grips, hammer etc)

Here are the instructions I followed :

Vehicle Speed Sensor - removal and refitting

1. Access to the speed sensor is easiest from below. Apply the handbrake, then loosen the left hand (passenger side) front wheel nuts. Jack up the front of the car and support it on axle stands.
2. Remove the left-hand front wheel and the wheelarch liner - the sensor is located next to the right-hand driveshaft, at the rear of the transmission.
3. Disconnect the wiring plug from the top of the sensor.
4. Using thin-nosed pliers, pull out the retaining pin at the base of the sensor, noting how it is fitted.
5. Pull out the sensor and be prepared for a bit of oil spillage.
6. To fit the new sensor, just reverse the procedure - lightly oil the rubber o-ring on the new sensor first.

Here are some helpful tips for the above points :

2. I think I could have possibly done this job without removing the wheel or the liner. Removing them did, however, help us with removing the retaining pin which was stuck - see tip 4. To remove the wheelarch liner, there are a total of 6 screws to remove - 2 each side of the suspension, one connecting the liner to the front bumper at the bottom and one bolt securing the bottom rear of the liner to the sill.

3. It'll take you a while to find it, as it's not immediately obvious. The Haynes manual does have a few pictures, but it took me a while to find it even with the pictures ! Have a look at your new sensor - the arm with the hole that protrudes from it makes it easy to distinguish it from the other sensors that you'll be able to see under there. I would actually describe it as being on top of the transmission so you'll need to reach around to be able to grab it. I found a torch was essential.

4. This was the bit that I struggled with. The steel retaining pin has a clip attached to it and tugging on this just caused the clip to break off. It soon became apparent that the pin was well and truely stuck fast. To remove it, I had to break off the plastic arm from the sensor to enable me to be able to grip the end of the pin tightly with mole grips. A friend with a long chisel and hammer was then able to tap away at the mole grips with me tugging with each hit, until the pin came out. He was able to position the chisel through a gap where the wheelarch liner would have been and hammer away from there.

6. Putting the new sensor in was fairly easy - it just needed tapping gently down with a hammer. Despite breaking the clip off the steel retaining pin, I decided to reuse it as it goes back in so tightly that I don't really think that the clip was doing anything anyway. (If you're not sure, then get a new retaining pin before you start the job !) NB. Make sure you leave enough of the pin sticking out to be able to remove it in future !

I've done a few jobs on cars before and didn't find this one too hard - the manual desribes it as 'fairly difficult - suitable for the competent DIY mechanic'

Removing the pin was the hardest part. My Focus is just over 5 years old so you may find the pin easier to remove if yours is newer.

If the dealer price of £100+ for that job is correct, then I guess I saved around £80 by having a go.

Hope this is helpful.

One last thing - even with the plastic arm broken off your old sensor, you still won't be able to remove the sensor until you've removed the retaining pin as it is held in place inside the cavity by the pin too. Trust me - the job would have taken about 20 minutes less if I'd have realised this sooner....

;o)
Ford Focus engine problem - mikej
I should add that these instructions apply to the 1.8i petrol model with manual gearbox.

For other engine sizes or automatic gearboxes, you better check the Haynes manual.
Ford Focus engine problem - Snakey
Reprogramming the ECU sounds like it might be worth a try on my '99 1.8 Manual Focus (see other post) as I also suffer the surging revs.

If the software is 'losing its memory' it could explain the instruments restting on startup as well.
Ford Focus engine problem - notrub

the surge in engine speed is down to the air control valve, it becomes clogged with carbon from the oil mist from the breather system connected to the crankcase breather, replacement is fairly easy, a short term cure is to just clean out the old one with carb cleaner, will last a good few years after a good clean

Ford Focus engine problem - robincsco
Hi, thanks for the great help with the pin. I had to do the exact same thing, though I'd add that it came out easier when a twisted the pin just before using the hammer and chisel each time. Took about 5 goes, picking mole grips off the floor

However I now have a second problem the sensor will not pull out. It twists with difficulty about 90 degree, but I just cannot get a purchase on it with enough force to pull it out. Hands are red raw

Any ideas

Cheers
Ford Focus engine problem - mikej
Wow - thread revival !

I seem to remember that my sensor came out relatively easily, although it may have needed a bit of gentle but firm prising with a screwdriver or perhaps gripping and pulling with the mole-grips - I really can't remember.

You do need to take care with the sensor though - I've read reports of them snapping in half and then a self-tapping screw is needed to recover the bottom half from the gearbox - you really don't want to end up going down that route !
Ford Focus engine problem - robincsco
OK thanks. I need to be careful then! It really wont budge easily upwards. I may need to use a similar process to the pin

Brgds
Ford Focus engine problem - robincsco
Finally did it, everything works fine, here's the process I used:

1) Follow the above steps especially to get the pin out, mole grips, tap out from wheel arch...in addition to get the sensor out itself was harder for me...
2) Apply mole grips vertically to the sensor
3) Thread a bike brake cable inner through the jaws of the grips
4) Make a loop at the open ends of the cable with another pair of grips tightly
5) Place a solid plank or similar across the engine bay being sure not to foul anything
6) Use a very strong, long bar, through the loop and levering against the plank and cable loop
7) Lever gently upwards to ease the sensor out

Mine took about 5 slips offs of the mole grips but eventually it popped. Be very careful that the sensor can break apparently if abused too much.

I had a bit of trouble getting the new pin back in as its difficult to see to align the hole.

After a week of driving I've had no problems, cut outs, wipers cycling, speedo zeroing etc so am quite happy

thanks for the adice
Ford Focus engine problem - Mac 74
Hi, found this thread after having very similar problems but with a different accompanying symptom.

My speedo drops to zero intermittantly. This is usually at (or just after) start up. The speedo dropping also coincides with the car jumping in low gear at low speeds although the jumping stops once i'm getting towards 30mph. When the speedo kicks back in the jumping stops.

No one else with the speedo dropping seems to have the problem with the jumping so not sure if the remedy is the same as above?

Is this something i should get sorted or is it ok to live with?

Thanks a lot.

mark
Ford Focus 1.4 speedo drops to zero while driving - mr fix
Cause of fault is speed sensor in gear box located on rear of box around diff area.
Removal, jack up car o/s and support. remove multiplug . then remove roll pin, "can be hard to get out", i use a pair of Good teeth mole grips on the end of pin then hit mole gripps with hammer (same way to pull it out) slowly get the role pin to move, then wd40 on it and work it out slowly pulling at the same time. To remove sensor again wd40 on the top area to help the sela to slide out with sensor. Once out clean up oil around sensor hole, and lubricate new sensor seals and push in correct way (same position as one removed) might have to use some force i used a socket over the top of the sensor with extensions from above. Then Clean up pin, then use small pin to make sure sensor lined up correctly beford reift roll pin (put some grease on pin just incase you have to get it out again!!)then refit pin.
Clean off any split oil, and then check gear box oil level if alot of oil came out. top up with 75w grade oil.
Part cost About £26.00 from Ford (dealer part only) get locking pin if you are going to do job just incase you butcher old pin!

Edited by mr fix on 21/10/2007 at 21:36

Ford Focus 1.4 speedo drops to zero while driving - goonio
I did this job yesterday - here's a couple of extra tips / observations (1.8 focus)

I jacked the car up, set some additional supports removed the wheel and arch liner then slid under the car - found the sensor but access seemed to be a nightmare. I ended up doing the whole job from above as follows-
1-remove the plastic ducting pipe (comes from the air filter box - cling film and rubber band over each end to stop dirt falling in) - you'll then be able to see the sensor if you look straight down. There's a pain in the backside loom support - unclip the loom from it and bend the bracket out of the way to the left.
2-disconnect the sensor - you'll need to slide a small flat bladed screwdriver down the connector to release it
3-pull the pin out (see other posts) I wouldn't even bother starting this job unless you have some quality mole grips (small) and a can of WD 40 for this bit (I didn't hammer BTW just kept twisting side to side and spraying wd40 - took about 30 mins
4-pull the sensor out - keep twisting from side to side - it will eventually release - I used some long handled nips and knelt on the rocker box (used dense foam for comfort / not to damage anything)
5-insert the new sensor (as above posts - one extra tip it is possible to put it too far in and then getting the pin in will be a nightmare - I used a dentists mirror to set the height
6-wind some wire (I used mig wire) round the pin - this'll help when you hold it / find it when you drop it and tap home
7-obvious from here

Good luck - it's not a doddle but if you go carefully fairly straightforward



Ford Focus 1.4 speedo drops to zero while driving - timtimster
Just to add my two pence worth to this thread. Just replaced my speed sensor and found it relatively easy to do it working from above. Mine?s a 1.6 (I think you may have to remove the air filter ducting on other models) Cheers to all the other posters who gave me enough info to diagnose and have a go myself.

The symptoms I had were:

Speedo needle dropping to 0 at least once each time I used it. The milometer showed 0000. it would then be fine a few mins later. No discernible drop in power or radio going quiet like others have reported. It never cut out on me and I only had the ---- thing once but I reckon it was only going to get worse. Also all the needles in the console do a full sweep each time I start up.

Here?s what I did:

Before you start make sure you?ve got some light down there and a good set of smallish mole (vise) grips and a hammer.

Lean on an old pillow or something placed over the rocker cover and manifold. You can see the speed sensor pointing straight up from the back of the gear box. There are two black pipes in a white plastic clip. Unclip them, they will flex out of the way a bit when your arm?s down there. There is also a more flexible tube and a piece of the wiring that I tied out of the way to the bulkhead.

I prepped it with WD40 a few times for a couple of days before starting. Spraying onto the end of the pin and into the recess around the bottom of the sensor itself. It was only when I was putting the new sensor in that I noticed that you can see the pin as it passes and goes into the cut out in the side of the sensor where it holds it in place ie. The WD can lubricate the part of the pin that is ?inside? the gearbox.

Here are some pictures of the sensor so you can get an idea what it looks like out of the gearbox:

tinyurl.com/2l57ke

You should now have a bit of room to get at the speed sensor and unclip the connector. This is pretty fiddly and took a bit before I actually disconnected it. On the side of the connector nearest to the bulkhead there is a raised ?bridge? squeeze this to unclip or get a small screwdriver under it levering towards the bulkhead while you pull the connector up.

At this point you could try cleaning the three pins you can see in the sensor and the connections on the connector (with contact cleaner or I used brake cleaner and a cotton bud). A week or so ago I tried this and it stopped the symptoms up until a few days ago when the speedo dropped again, fingers crossed it might solve yours.

Anyway, to get the pin out:

WD40 it regularly as you complete this.

The pin has a piece of metal riveted to the end, which bends over and is supposed to stop the pin from coming out on its own (yeah, right!), bend it up a bit. Firstly I used a flat head screwdriver behind the metal and the plastic arm to try and lever the pin out of the hole a bit. I think it might have moved a bit before it snapped off allowing a bit more purchase with the mole grips.

There is a plastic ?arm? that comes out of the sensor with a hole at the end where the pin goes through. Try to keep the arm intact as it will help you lever the sensor out when the pin is removed.

I cut the hole bit at the end of the arm off with some cutters. This gives you a bit more room to get the grips on. I first tried to lever the pin out with the cutters like someone else mentioned but that didn?t work for me. I gripped the end of the pin with the moleys really tight, horizontally to the pin. There is just enough room to get a medium hammer down there and about 5 inches of swing. I tapped the pin and twisted it a bit after each tap. It came out after 6 or 7 swings.

To get the sensor itself out:

Use a flat head screwdriver under the ?arm? and lever up, hoping as you do that it doesn?t break in half! You have to lever fairly hard but not straining.

I read that it helps to remove the transmission oil filler cap to ease the vaccum effect. It looked a bit tricky to get to and you risk your oil spilling all over the floor as it?s the level hole as well. I didn?t bother.

Once you break the initial seal it should come out fairly easily. Be careful after you remove it completely as there is a big gaping hole in the top of your gearbox. You wouldn?t want anything falling in there. Get a rag and clean out the crud that builds up in the hole. Be careful to wipe up and out so it doesn?t go into the gearbox, then tuck a clean part into the hole.

It was a little bit bent when I got it out due, I think, to the levering so if you want to get it out and reuse it again then I?d think of some other way to remove it. I can?t see why you?d want to do that, mine cost £26.80 from Ford and they?re a sealed unit.

Oil the O rings on the new one and tap it back in to place. I used a length of wood to tap gently down and a thin screwdriver to judge where the hole is. Finally I greased the pin (if I ever wanted to get it out again) and tapped that gently home. Neither needed any force. I didn?t bother with a new pin with the clip on it as it was a tightish fit in there and I doubt it would come out on its own. Connect the plug, clip the pipes back and untie the bits and hopefully it sorted your problem. About 30 mins to do and £50 in labour saved. Double or triple that for a Ford dealer. Good luck.

It hasn?t sorted the needle sweep but I read somewhere that it could be either my battery needs charging or a new one. I?ll charge it and see if it that sorts it. If anyone?s got any ideas they?d be much appreciated. I?ve also got this annoying ?thud? when I turn the steering right from centre. See:

uk.youtube.com/watch?v=ATjdVu1Ff-Q

Also if anyone?s any ideas, be much appreciated.

Link no1 shrunk to reduce wide screen effect !

Edited by Pugugly {P} on 24/11/2007 at 18:57

Ford Focus 1.4 speedo drops to zero while driving - timtimster
Bit of an update on this. Sorted the needle sweep on the speedo with a new battery. My old one wasn't holding enough charge. Must have been doing some sort of reset each time I started the car. This also cured the ghostly goings on with the central locking going off by itself when driving.
Still no luck with the steering problem though.
Bit more info here if anyone can help:

forums.focaljet.com/team-tech/574893-steering-bind...l?

Any help would still be appreciated.
Ford Focus 1.4 speedo drops to zero while driving - BigBadBilliousBob

Just done my 1.6 2000 petrol 160,000 mile Focus using this entry. Symptoms were same as others, speedo dropping to zero and then odo disapearing to reveal a series of dashes, drop in volume on radio. I did job from above fairly easily. Removed thin strip from pin and plastic locating arm before I started. Retaining pin removed using mole grips as described after WD40 application. Using short partial turns of pin using mole grips, I levered mole grips with screwdriver away from body of gearbox.

Most difficult bit was removing sensor itself, mole grips applied on body of sensor and twisting it was not enough, again had to lever mole grips using screwdriver against body of gearbox.

Once old sensor had been removed, inserted new one and eased in so far, used long piece of wood and small hammer to nudge into place until pin was relocated. I also did not use new pin but felt pin was secure enough as it was.

Approx 80 minutes from starting to test drive and functioning speedo. Many thanks for information that heped me do the job.

Ford Focus engine problem - Canary Fan
I also have had this same problem but have been putting it off for a while and it's just become more frequent. After reading these threads i thought i'd have a go but was a little concerned that it could be a little awkward. Phoned my local Ford dealer who quoted me £35 for the part and pin. Thought i'd ask how much to fit and once i convinced them not to check anything else and to "just fit the sensor" and was quoted £63 inc parts and VAT. So at £28 to fit thought i'd let them have a go. The most surprissing part was that when i settled the bill i was billed just £48 all in yes £48..... So my point is consider a main dealer you may be surprised. By the way, like everyone else it has solved the speedo problem.
Ford Focus engine problem - Chacer

I have observed this intermittently - the speedometer needle falls to zero momentarily, but not with any accompanying effect to power.

However I have noticed that this seems to occur on the same stretches of road at approximately the same location - which makes me wonder if the problem is associated with micro-wave radiation from nearby communications masts, jamming the electronic signal data from the EMS.

Is this likely?

Ford Focus engine problem - emmah

hi all

I have an 02 for focus Zetec and Im having the same issue but its only the speedomiter failing / jumping. When it drops to 0 i feel a loss of power then when it corrects itself i can feel the car pull again. If I break or go down to low rev when the speedomiter is at 0 ( turn a corner, roundabout ect ) the dash lights up like a xmas tree and the engine cuts out causing the steering to lock, as you can imagine this is becoming veryu dangours and more frequent. I have just spent £150ish to get my altenater reconditioned as apparently that was loosing vaultage but this has not worked.

This does not effect anything else in the car nor does it effect temp gage, petrol, rev counter only the speedo. PLEASE can some one help

Ford Focus engine problem - mikej

I have an 02 for focus Zetec and Im having the same issue but its only the speedomiter failing / jumping. When it drops to 0 i feel a loss of power then when it corrects itself i can feel the car pull again. If I break or go down to low rev when the speedomiter is at 0 ( turn a corner, roundabout ect ) the dash lights up like a xmas tree and the engine cuts out causing the steering to lock, as you can imagine this is becoming veryu dangours and more frequent.

The Focus does suffer from other problems, such as faulty instrument clusters or idle control valves (the latter making the car stall), but I think a faulty cluster probably wouldn't just have problems with the speedo only and a faulty idle control valve would make you stall when stopping at junctions/roundabouts pretty frequently (and probably wouldn't lead to the speedo dropping to zero when driving at speed). You only have to read further up the thread to see that your symptoms fit those of a failing vehicle speed sensor (vss) pretty closely.

Loss of power will lead to the steering and brakes not working effectively, so it's important you get this sorted ASAP, as it sounds like you've been losing power.

A new speed sensor isn't that expensive - the majority of the cost if you get a garage to do it will be labour charge and this will vary, depending on how difficult it is to remove the old sensor.

Ford Focus engine problem - LucyK

I have the same problem, notices power drop and loss of speedo a few timesbut not at same time, then a week ago lost both speedo and power completly both times on turning a corner/roundabout. Was fine for a week then did it again today.

From this Im guessing first thing I should do is get a new sensor fitted.

What I am curious about is why this sensor affects the engine to cut out completely-yes I know nothing about cars but helps to learn!!

Thanks!

Ford Focus engine problem - pumestsa

hi my ford focus mk1 1.8 has the speedo, odometer and the power surge problem.

If i am to replace the VVS will this stop everything including the power surge or do i need 2 gt it on a machine to sort the power surge?

thanks

Ford Focus engine problem - tferrino22

I followed all of the advice on this thread and successfully got the pin out, only to have the sensor itself stubbornly refused to come out.

I ended up taking it to a ford dealers who charged me £80 plus VAT, but did the job in a couple of hours. Car working perfectly now.

Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - DNWJones

My 1.8 Zetec has the same problem so thanks to all of your info, took it in and had new instrument cluster, speedo head, re progam, reset with new software. Managed to get to get almost a mile away after collecting the car and the speedo dropped to zero the car attempted to stall.

Anyone have any ideas on what I can do next?

Thanks

Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - Tom234

Hey guys I have this problem but with the attempted fix, another problems has risen. The pin was relatively easy for the mechanic to take out but its the actual sensor that is the problem. It has snapped in half when the mechanic tried to get it out of the gearbox. The sensor half is still inside the gearbox. Do anyone know how to take the bottom half of the sensor out without opening up the whole gearbox? Help would be GREATLY appreciated.

Thanks

Tom

Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - MrsDoc09
Hi
Relatively new driver here, so please forgive any ignorance!!
I have a Y reg focus, 1.8 petrol.
Donated by my lovely Dad.
Always had the speedo dropping issue (intermittently).
This am the car cut out on me (cue panic moment!!)
Restarted engine & ok rest of journey to work.
1st time it has cut out.
Is this likely to happen again?
Is it an easy enough fix? (We have a Haynes manual, but there is no way I would even attempt crawling under the car, my Dad might if I ask really nicely!)
He is by no means a mechanic, but can turn his hand to most things.
Is it an expensive fix?
Any help hugely appreciated.
Thank you ??
Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - Leefrancis7
Another concerned Focus owner here. I've had steering problems. It,s happen 5 times in the last 6-8 weeks and I have discovered this thread after googling the problem.
Having read the other threads, I can also relate to the speedo dropping to zero and the mileage display disappearing.
Had two different garages look at this and even my Dad as taken the car for a spin around an industrial estate but no problems.
I can't just continue to drive for fear of the steering locking again during driving. Thankfully, the only occasions this as happened is when have dropped into second gear and turned into a junction.
Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - Leefrancis7
Planning to take my focus in to my local Ford Dealer for information on this.
Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - cattman
Another concerned Focus owner here. I've had steering problems. It,s happen 5 times in the last 6-8 weeks and I have discovered this thread after googling the problem. Having read the other threads, I can also relate to the speedo dropping to zero and the mileage display disappearing. Had two different garages look at this and even my Dad as taken the car for a spin around an industrial estate but no problems. I can't just continue to drive for fear of the steering locking again during driving. Thankfully, the only occasions this as happened is when have dropped into second gear and turned into a junction.

Are you sure the steering is "locking" The lock isusually mechanical and controlled by the key?

Perhaps the engine is stalling/cutting out so you are losing power assistance and need a lot more effort?

Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - Leefrancis7

Thank you for getting back to me.

The steering goes really heavy rather than actually locking. I should have been more careful with my terminology. The car doesn't stall. The engine is still ticking over but to release the heavy sensation of the steerring, I have to switch the engine off and restart and it's OK again.

Ford Focus speedo drops to zero with loss of power - avabanana

Thank you for getting back to me.

The steering goes really heavy rather than actually locking. I should have been more careful with my terminology. The car doesn't stall. The engine is still ticking over but to release the heavy sensation of the steerring, I have to switch the engine off and restart and it's OK again.

Iam currently experiencing the exact same problems... it happened to me surrounded by traffic on a round about today and has happened about 5 times before... this also has the speedometer dropping out at the same time.

What did you have done to solve this can I ask????

I am also experiencing the high revs surges as well... was this part of your problem and was it solved as well??

Ford Focus engine problem - Coombs33
Alan, Your problem sounds like it could be related to the vehicle speed sensor. This sensor attached to the gearbox informs the speedometer and ECU of the vehicle's speed. If this were to fail, you would expect the speedometer to read zero and perhaps the ECU to be confused, causing the problem. GroovyChick, Did the re-programming also fix the 'power surge' and high-revs while idling problem that Alan describes? My 1.8 Focus has this 'issue' which, now I'm used to it, is really only an irritation, as it sounds like I'm revving my engine in impatience! Interestingly, I used to drive a 1.8 Mondeo with an identical engine, which did not have this problem. I believe the only difference between them is the way the ECU is programmed. (I believe that more of the Focus's engine is made of aluminium instead of iron though). They both feel and sound very different despite being of similar mileages and ages. Another, perhaps related, issue I have is jerky pick-up when lifting off and then accelerating in 5th gear. This went away immediately after the last service. It came back about 2 weeks later, just after filling up with cheap supermarket petrol and/or hot weather. I'll try running it low and filling up with Shell to see if it improves things. Tim

My dad had this exact issue and it was a sensor on the gearbox, quick cheap fix if the sensor is easy to free or could end up more expensive if it breaks.

Ford Focus engine problem - Brenton

Hello, just thought I'd say thanks. I had this issue with the speedo dropping worth my 1.6 focus and changed the speedo as instructed and all is good again.

It is definitely easier to do this job from underneath the car as you can easily access the sensor from this position.

The retaining pin came out easily, i just broke the plastic arm off and put some mole grips tight on the pin in line with it. I then used a small podger bar though the handle of the mole grips and levered against the gearbox gently working it loose.

I then used the podger bar to work the sensor itself free.

Thanks

 

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