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Old 12-07-2012, 07:47 PM   #1
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Unidentified Problems

Hello to all in the community of FF,

I have a few problems that I would like assistance in possibly identifying if that's alright...

To start, I'm a college student who is going to school 3+ hours away from home. My father is a mechanic part-time. Since I'm going to school so far away, it's hard to get his help when I need it. A perfect example of this was yesterday. 1) I drove to Walmart to get things for my dorm, and when I returned to my car to leave, I fired it up and it ran really rough. So I shut it off, and tried to restart it. But when I tried, there was no response from under the hood at all. At first I thought it was the battery dying, but all of my lights on my dash as well as my headlights wouldn't dim when I tried starting it several times. I called my father, and based on what I told him, he diagnosed it as a starter going bad. (This was at 7pm). He told me he didn't know for sure, and as a result told me to leave it at Walmart overnight and get a ride back with a friend. He drove 3 hours to get here today at about 7am, and when he got here, it fired right up, and fired up every time he tried. He checked everything that he thought could possibly be wrong and everything looked "pretty" in his words, so he didn't know what there was to do. He drove home.
To be honest, i feel bad that he drove 3 hours across state only for the issue to vanish before he gets here. I really don't know what it could've been, which is why I ask you here at FF if you have any ideas...if you need a bit more information, i can try to answer your questions, but i can't guarantee they will be the answers you would like.

2) There are times when I start my car and the car will run very roughly. To the point where the car is actually shaking and it sounds like it's running on only 3 cylinders. But if you shut it off and restart it, it runs fine like nothing was wrong. Any ideas?

3) Whenever my car is warmed up completely and i start driving, there will be a high pitched squealing noise coming from inside my car somewhere. I don't know where it is, but it gets faster as I accelerate and goes away when I'm braking, but will reappear once i stop. It sounds like it's coming from the passenger side, and since I've had the car it has definitely gotten louder as a norm. Again....any ideas? It's been driving me crazy for a while now.

Sorry if it's a lot of information in one post, but i just felt like getting it all taken care of without the need for multiple posts.

Thank you for the help,


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Old 12-07-2012, 07:54 PM   #2
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Well, my first thought would be that the electrical issue may be your alternator. Take it to O'reily's (or whatever parts chain you guys have over there) and see if they'll test it for free. Most parts shops will.

And when you say the squealing is coming from inside the car, do you mean like inside the engine bay, or inside the cab? There are several squeals in my car right now, and I've got them coming from both places lol. If its coming from your engine bay, it's most likely a belt. They'll sound like hell while warming up, then as the car gets warm, they don't sound as bad. If it's coming from inside the cab, its probably a trim piece somewhere. Glovebox maybe? In mine, the airbag cover on the steering wheel vibrates at idle, causing an extremely nerveracking squeal as it rubs against the air bag housing.

Best of luck man. Let us know if there are any updates!
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Old 12-07-2012, 08:27 PM   #3
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The squealing noise might be a wheel bearing. These Focus's seem to be hard on them. Not a big job, mabye a six pack. Use a good bearing or you will be doing the job shortly.
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