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Old 07-08-2008, 08:57 AM   #1
ZX3Edge
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New to forum, couple questions

Hey guys, Im new to the forum and I had a couple questions. I just bought an 01 ZX3 5spd with 120k on the clock. Great running car, tight steering...etc. I was wondering if there is anything I need to consider changing or looking at that may need attention (plugs, wires, timing belt?).

Also, I've been doing some reading/searching on here the last couple days and trying to find out some good upgrades. I dont want to dump a bunch of money into it, but Id be willing to spend a little bit on it to help it out some. It seems like its hard to get any real noticable power gains with these cars without dropping some serious cash lol. What would be the best wires for the $$ that I could upgrade too? Any other performance mods worth while to help the gas mileage even better (tune, intake?) I'd like to stay in the $500-$1000 AT MOST in performance mods.

Forgive me for my ignorance...this is the first car I've owned...I've had trucks all my life I appreciate anybodys help


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Old 07-08-2008, 09:14 AM   #2
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hmmm if it has 120K i would put new spark plugs and wires in it, check the brake lines, and parking brake line.
check the wheel bearings.
let us know how the car handles if anything feels wrong or sounds weird. ill visit back here to help you out~! =)
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Old 07-08-2008, 09:16 AM   #3
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first off !

Its tough to say at 120k what has and hasnt been replaced already by the previous owner. Without any records, its a tough call. Timing belts are usually done by 100k, because by 120k you run into the possibility of it snapping. Water pump is usually done with the Timing belt. Your clutch could be something to consider too, especially if it feels loose or slips.

I would recommend taking it to a shop/mechanic you trust or know personally and have them give the foci a good once over to check. They may be able to tell you if say the timing belt needs to be done. Dont just take it to any shop, cuz theyll tell you to replace things just to make money!

Depending on where you got it, its possible it was inspected before sale too, perhaps talk to the dealership where you got it.

When I got my Focus I went ahead and did the plugs anyway, so I knew they were fresh, along with a fuel system cleaner, since I had no idea what the previous owner had done to it. And its an inexpensive and very easy job to do for some security. May also want to consider an oil change, but up to you (Dealer possibly did one before selling)

For Wires: Focus Sport, Steeda, Central Florida Motorsports, and Ford Racing all had good plug wire sets for around 40-50 bucks for good quality wires, unless you want to step up to the perf ones from screamin deamon.

You should definitely be able to get the wires, plugs, some form of intake and an exhaust, and possibly a tune, all for less than 1k and get several hp to the ground and a noticable performance increase.

Feel free to PM if you have any questions or want some more suggestions.

EDIT: ^^definitely agree with that, check out the brakes for wear especially the rears (they may still be stock). from your description the suspension sounds fine since you say steering and handling feels tight.
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Old 07-08-2008, 10:15 AM   #4
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Thanks guys. I apprecaite the feedback!

The previous owner said that he hasn't changed the timing belt so I'll have to check it out and see how it looks...probably should be changed. I figure I will end up doing new plugs and wires too. Oil looked good...said it was changed about a 1000 miles ago, but I'll change it anyways. Clutch seems to be good, not brand new but it seems fine.

I read that the Motorcraft Copper plugs seem to be better than the platinums...is this true? and would anybody have that part number off hand?

Im leaning towards a Magnaflow system for the performance/price...not sure on the intake yet...BTW, what is a safe "redline" in these cars stock? 6000-6500 tops?

Not sure what everybody's mileage is on there rig but how high can I expect to get out of this motor driving it respectably? 200-250k?

Thanks for all your help!
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Old 07-08-2008, 10:23 AM   #5
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Yea, quite a few people run the copper plugs. You definitely want them if you are going to run a Turbo or supercharger, cuz if you get detonation, the plug goes out first, instead of the cylinder which can happen with platinums. I personally have always used Platinums (Motorcraft or otherwise), so im not sure of the performance benefits of running the coppers, but someone who does should be able to tell ya!

Im approaching 100k miles myself, probably by the end of the year, and i have seen quiet a few Foci on here in the 100k+ range! I had 130k on a well taken care of 99 SPI Escort and it was running great, and still going strong! As long as you take care of it and keep up with your maintenance you could easily approach 200k.
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Old 07-09-2008, 07:48 PM   #6
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i have almost 120k on mine. i did timing belt and just replaced the alternator it gave out on me today.

as for an intake. alot of ppl on here may bash u. but i have an ebay intake on my car. i got it for $35 shipped, all it is is an aluminum pipe with a filter on it. no sense in spending $150 on an aem.
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Old 07-09-2008, 07:56 PM   #7
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^^true, but u should still get a K&N or AEM filter to put on the end of the intake tubing
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Old 07-09-2008, 08:27 PM   #8
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right now, theres tons of deal for intakes in our for sale marketplace u should look into getting. Oh and a cone filter is a cone filter, dont go by brands.

Dont get the magnaflow exhaust, waaaay to expensive. I think trubendz makes a cheaper exhaust for like 275 i believe and alot of people have them. http://www.trubendz.com/home.asp?pro...e=productIndex

Wires- uh msd makes good fittin wires for our engines, but i bought the steeda pro wires for i think 40 bucks and they have been working great for me.(www.steeda.com)

Plugs- go to your local dealership and ask for motorcraft copper plugs AZFS22C. Mine had to be ordered.

Check out your brake pads, shoes etc. Id def get that timing belt replaced asap. Check out our how-to forums. Has tons of stuff you can do yourself for cheap. Hope all that is helpful
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