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Old 10-13-2008, 11:43 AM   #1
tylerdurden
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Engine Vibrations When Idle

Hey Guys I was wondering if someone here would be kind enough to help me figure out what the problem is with my car.

When my car is idle I feel strong vibrations that I assume are coming from the engine. The vibrations are strong enough to shake the compartment between the seats. The only time they stop is when I put the car in park or neutral. Maybe its the engine mounts?

I searched the forum to see if anyone had the same problem but none of the threads fit my conditions.

These are the specs for my car: 2006 ZX5 Focus SE. 19000 miles.


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Old 10-13-2008, 06:38 PM   #2
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i dont know if this helps but my zetec has engine shudder ever 3 seconds or so when im parked, sounds like the engine slightly struggles to stay running for a split second then it runs fine, then 3 seconds later it happens again. dunno what it is :( i think i might have to unplug the battery and relearn my ecu
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Old 10-13-2008, 06:48 PM   #3
tylerdurden
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Well not quite, mine has a constant vibration rather than a pulse but thanks. I figured I'd ask for help here since this site is dedicated to the focus. After further doing research I have a feeling its the engine mounts.
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Old 10-13-2008, 07:18 PM   #4
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Welcome to FF !!



Let's go a bit deeper in identifying the symptoms before we throw out "possibles"

1. Does the vibration occur all the time? When the engine is cold? When the engine is warm?

2. Does the car shudder/vibrate under acceleration or ONLY at an idle?

3. Is the vibration confined only to the steering wheel or does it radiate across the dashboard?

4. Have you measured your gas mileage to determine if there is a drop off?

5. Is there a noticable drop off in performance (i.e. stumbling, slow to accelerate?)

6. when was the last service done to the car? (I see you only have 19k on the odo, but sometimes people put plugs in the car etc.)

Let's start with these and see what else the car tells us.
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Old 10-13-2008, 07:45 PM   #5
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do you have any mods that could've caused this before it happened?

um perhaps since ur in New jersey did this car ever plow through or sit in a good pile of snow stiffening up lubricated bolts mounts or parts? lol i donno sorry just throwing out some possibilities

the cars seems to new still
so good luck with your solution
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Old 10-13-2008, 08:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WeeAsp View Post
Welcome to FF !!



Let's go a bit deeper in identifying the symptoms before we throw out "possibles"

1. Does the vibration occur all the time? When the engine is cold? When the engine is warm?

2. Does the car shudder/vibrate under acceleration or ONLY at an idle?

3. Is the vibration confined only to the steering wheel or does it radiate across the dashboard?

4. Have you measured your gas mileage to determine if there is a drop off?

5. Is there a noticable drop off in performance (i.e. stumbling, slow to accelerate?)

6. when was the last service done to the car? (I see you only have 19k on the odo, but sometimes people put plugs in the car etc.)

Let's start with these and see what else the car tells us.

First off, thanks to everyone for taking the time out to look at this thread, I really appreciate it. And thanks Weasp for giving me these questions to answer!

1. I haven't really noticed a difference in when it happens temperature-wise. But on some days the vibrations are stronger than others. Sometimes its strong enough to shake whatever is in my center compartment.

2. If it does vibrate while accelerating its not enough for me to feel it inside the car. However, I do always feel it when idle.

3. I feel the vibrations mostly in the steering wheel, center console, and under the driver seat. If you put your hand on the dashboard you can slightly feel the vibrations too.

4. I do keep track of my gas mileage and it did drop 2 miles per gallon two months ago but at the same time I did change my driving habits as I got a new job.

5. No there's no drop in performance.

6. I haven't had any type of special service to the car except my regular oil changes and tire rotations since I first bought it.

And no I do not have any mods and it hasn't snowed for nearly 11 months hahaha.
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Old 10-14-2008, 08:38 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerdurden View Post

1. I haven't really noticed a difference in when it happens temperature-wise. But on some days the vibrations are stronger than others. Sometimes its strong enough to shake whatever is in my center compartment.

2. If it does vibrate while accelerating its not enough for me to feel it inside the car. However, I do always feel it when idle.

3. I feel the vibrations mostly in the steering wheel, center console, and under the driver seat. If you put your hand on the dashboard you can slightly feel the vibrations too.

4. I do keep track of my gas mileage and it did drop 2 miles per gallon two months ago but at the same time I did change my driving habits as I got a new job.

5. No there's no drop in performance.

6. I haven't had any type of special service to the car except my regular oil changes and tire rotations since I first bought it.

And no I do not have any mods and it hasn't snowed for nearly 11 months hahaha.
No worries and happy to help.

I am more inclined to believe that it is a physical issue (i.e. a broken mount), but I am not ruling performance out because of the idle vibration.

Harmonics are funny in a car. It can originate deep inside the motor and manifest itself in many places.

I would start by looking at the transmission mounts as you are feeling it in the seat.

With the vibration you describe, it should be fairly easy to see if there is a problem.

from there, move north to the engine mounts. The "dogbone" on the front of the engine and underneath.

If all of those components are intact, then I would move to diagnosing a running problem.

However, you only have 19K on the odometer. All of these items should be covered as part of the manufacturer warranty.

I would also check to see if any spark plug wires have come loose either at the coil or at the plug. I would also inspect them for visible cracks or "scoring". If the wires are arcing electricity, the scoring will show up as black or brown streaks across the plug wires.

Those are the simple things to check.

I would assume that there is no check engine light?
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Old 10-14-2008, 11:00 AM   #8
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Wow. Excelent thread. I'm having the exact same problem. I'm going to see if there are any other threads/posts/forums anywhere that will show where the transmission, and engine mounts are.


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Old 10-14-2008, 02:11 PM   #9
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Thanks for this thread guys. My car is at the garage as we speak for a collapsed PCV hose and valve replacement (it was sputtering). I also have this same vibration that you describe here. It is really bad at startup when the car is cold. It vibrates the whole front of the car mostly along the dashboard area. My mechanic told me it was the engine mounts.

Where are these? Are they difficult to replace? For a guy who is handy but doesn't have a ton of car experience where would this rate on a 1-10...? I have replaced a couple of alternators and an 02 sensor among other small things. I am not that experienced...
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Old 10-14-2008, 03:43 PM   #10
tylerdurden
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Yeah my vibrations don't seem to be consistent. The vibration wasn't strong when I first started up my car today but once it got warmed up they got stronger.
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