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fcabanski 01-22-2013 04:43 PM

2010 Focus - Brake and Engine Trouble
Purchased last Thursday. I'm a sucker.

I can feel some shaking in the brake pedal, and there's a hollow sound when driving and when breaking. After purchase, the dealer service dept. said the brakes had residue from sitting in the lot. They sanded the brakes to remove the residue.

Now, only the second day driving the car, every time I come to a stop the engine sputters and all the electronic devices (radio, turn signals) blank out for a second.

The dealer keeps saying he will fix these issues, but claims to not be able to find any issues.

It turned out the check I had written was written from the wrong account, so I told the dealer to take back the car. But the dealer threatened to cal the police, so I re-wrote a check.

Am I stuck with a lemon? Is it usual for brakes to make a hollow sound, and to feel the wheels shake/ the road through the brake and gas pedals?

whynotthinkwhynot 01-22-2013 06:40 PM

You're feeling quite a few things through the brakes, I think. First off, the tires probably have flat spots from sitting. You'd feel some shaking while driving down the road. You might even have bad tires, but for now, let's just assume it's flat spots.

If brakes sit for a long time, they will build up some rust residue, and it will cause some vibration in the pedal for a short time- a few days. There is always the possibility that the rotors are warped. That's not uncommon. This can happen if someone does some hard braking. You can also have problems from old pads. Old pads that sit out in the weather don't wear right, and can be problematic sometimes.

As far as the stalling engine goes, first off, we need to know which transmission you have. Either a manual or automatic. The problem could be that there hasn't been a "tune-up" done to the car in a long time. It could have some bad gas in it- ethanol blended gasoline will only survive for a month before it separates and that doesn't make for a happy engine until you burn it all up. There's nothing you can do to fix this but run a few tanks through the car. It could be other things also. The IACV sometimes doesn't act correctly after a car has been sitting for a while. The valve can stick, and not maintain idle. My guess would be fuel though. Dealers would be wise to fill-er-up before leaving the lot, and that would dilute bad fuel so that the car would act better until the bad fuel was used up. It could also be something as simple as a loose battery connection. Unless the mileage is up around 100k, I wouldn't think that the alternator was the problem.

It's hard to say for sure without being there to diagnose the problem. Keep taking it back and they will fix everything. 2010 Focis are a lot like my 05, and I didn't have to do anything to my 05 except what you'd expect- like brakes, struts, oil changes and so forth over 150k miles. The alternator went out around 120k, which is not abnormal for any vehicle. The accessory belt hadn't broken, but I changed it when I did the alternator- around 100k is about the life of an accessory belt.

fcabanski 01-23-2013 01:06 AM

The dealer keeps saying the same thing "bring it back, we'll fix it." The nearby dealer, who promised me they would service the car, won't service it. The far away dealer (25 miles) where I bought it (the nearby dealer drove me there - they advertised the car but it was really located with the far away dealer) keeps telling me the nearby dealer will service it. That does no good if the nearby dealer won't service it.

I didn't buy a car so I could visit the dealer every day.

But ultimately it was my mistake, so now I'm stuck. I'll see how it is after a few tanks.

Here's another question/issue. The day after I bought it there was a sizeable oil spot under the car. The dealer claims there is no leak. Now every morning there's a round wet spot under the's clear but it has stained both the driveway and the garage floor. I've never had such a spot under a car. AC condensation, yes, but that's just water and it doesn't stain.

Is that usual for a Focus?

whynotthinkwhynot 01-23-2013 05:42 AM

You should identify what the spot is caused by. Is it oil? Is it coolant? Is the engine losing oil? Is the engine losing coolant? Is the engine losing PS fluid?

Where exactly is the spot you're seeing? Is it on the passenger (right) side or the driver's (left) side? FYI: right and left are determined by sitting in the car facing forward.

If it's on the right side, it might be the hydraulic fluid from the front engine mount leaking out. That could create a small spot for a while, then it will go away. AC condensate can stain- if there is a lot of crud inside the AC plenum- but I doubt that's what it is since you said it was an oily spot. AC condensate should dry up, but if it was dirty, then you might see some brown stain, but it would be dry brown stain. You could probably clean that stain up easily with a household cleaner. For oily stains, use "orange" hand cleaner from an auto parts store. A little dab, rub with a rag, rinse, rub, and now that spot will be cleaner than the surrounding concrete. Don't dally if you want to clean it up. The longer an oily stain sits on concrete- the less likely that it will clean up.

FordService 01-24-2013 10:59 AM


Originally Posted by fcabanski (Post 4552645)
The dealer keeps saying the same thing "bring it back, we'll fix it."...


Originally Posted by whynotthinkwhynot (Post 4552027)
...It's hard to say for sure without being there to diagnose the problem. Keep taking it back and they will fix everything...


My name is Cory and Iím with Ford Service; welcome to the boards! As you can see, thereís an amazing community here (itís great to see you taking the time to help, whynotthinkwhynot). I want to forward this concern to your regional customer service manager. So I can do that, please send me a PM with your full name, mileage, best daytime phone number, dealer details, and VIN.


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