Question about 2003 Ford Focus

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2003 Ford Focus will not start

It happened this morning at home, it would not say a thing, all of the lights come on and then go off...but it would not even try to start..I tried 3 times and then it just magically crunk I am at work and tried to leave at lunch and here we go cranking, no nothing. Could this be my starter or alternator....the battery is only 2 months old, my horn works too?

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  • sylvia2555 Jan 29, 2009

    ok, I took the car to Autozone yesterday and they check the battery, cables, and the alternator and everythig was good, he cleaned the battery up a bit and it worked fine until today at lunch....I went to the mailbox and the car cut off while I was driving, the gages went crazy jumping and then the car clicked right back on when I pressed the gas ...but now my radio will not come on? OMG is this electrical? Will the check engine light come on for something like this, because it has not yet? Autozone can check for codes if the check engine light is on??? HELP!! I do not want to catch on fire, I have a baby..



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Hello, Your problem could be a couple of things. The first thing to check is the battery connection. Even if your lights and horn works the connection isn't good enough for the amount of amperage needed to start your car.
It could be the starter has a bad spot in the windings that prevents it from turning or the starter solenoid is bad or a bad connection.
The last problem you could have is the start switch that is under your dash on top of your steering column. This is very common.
Fords are notorious for starting problems due to wire and contact sizing.
Here is a link to a site that will give you more information. If you want help to work through these things let me know.

Posted on Jan 28, 2009

  • David Robinson Jan 29, 2009

    Hi again. unfortunately the Ford Focus does have a history of catching on fire. The fire usually starts under the hood and Ford is not sharing any info on what might be wrong.

    Go to this site and select your vehicle (Focus) and then enter your VIN. This is your Vehicle Identification Number and it will be on your registration, title, and usually on the dash at the bottom of the windshield drivers side.

    This site will tell you if you have a recall on your car. If you do call the Dealer you bought it from or the closest Ford dealer to have it fixed. It should be for free.

    There are also Auto electric repair shops in most towns that can fix your problem.

    Be very careful when you drive and get it checked as soon as possible. Don't take any chances.

    Let me know what you find and if you have any more questions feel free to ask.


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Your starter draws far more amperage than just about anything else in the car. Any poor connection at the battery or the other ends of the cables will cause the problem you posted. Make sure that the inside of the battery cables are clean and tight on the battery.If you can't remove them right now to clean them, sometimes just trying to turn them while still installed, will provide enough contact to get it started. After cleaning, If still no start, check other ends of same cables.

Posted on Jan 28, 2009

  • Richard Scordino Jan 29, 2009

    Im still staying with the assumption that there is a poor connection somewhere. The bouncing gauges tells me that at that point, something is making and breaking connection. I am willing to bet that they did not check the "in&out connection at the solenoid or the connection at the block on the negative terminal. Instead, they likely put their test machine on the battery and read the batt voltage & charging rate.(I often wonder if ASE is the American Stupid Association. Before they arrived, techs had to prove their expertise by what they could do, not by paper tests they could pass!!) Obviously everything checked out because at that point, everything was making connection! I suggest that you have someone load test the battery, but instead of connecting negative lead of test machine to battery, connect it to the block. Or, you may need to leave the car with a good trustworthy mechanic, so that he can drive it 'till the problem happens, he then can do some quick voltage tests to see where the connection is breaking down. (PS: stop worrying about a fire...this does not sound like fire material, but the annoyance factor may make you feel like burning it down if not repaired correctly asap!!!) Something you can do: When the problem happens, have someone attempt to start it up. Watch all connections for sparking & or smoking. If you find anything like that, loosen that fastener and re-tighten it.Or, do a "wiggle" test. With the engine running, wiggle the positive and negative wires and see if you get any sparking at connections or if the engine stumbles.
    Good luch again



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