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Old 02-22-2013, 07:26 PM   #11
amc49
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The vibration and creaking might not be connected at all. Look under car for the emergency brake cables chafing to rattle that is so common on these cars. Look close at the passenger side engine mount, can be problematic to vibrate car at highway speeds easily on these.
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:06 PM   #12
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You need to find a shop that does Hunter Road Force balancing. It's more expensive, but it will also readily identify any wheel issues. You can't find a better balance machine.
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:29 PM   #13
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Just what I was thinking...

Quote:
Originally Posted by amc49 View Post
The vibration and creaking might not be connected at all. Look under car for the emergency brake cables chafing to rattle that is so common on these cars. Look close at the passenger side engine mount, can be problematic to vibrate car at highway speeds easily on these.
LOTS of threads on here discussing that "low speed creak" from the rear, ALL related to the E-brake cables & the places they can rub as the suspension moves.

AND, most of the major vibration complaints end up at the motor/trans mounts. Passenger side being the worst offender, with best results over time with the Ford replacement for that one...

The question in mind now, is just how the vibrations may change with speed.

Don't want to put ideas in your head on this B4 hearing the symptoms, so Plz try to determine how much vibration you get at which speeds, including while idling. This can REALLY help with diagnostic guesses!

Cheers!
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:25 PM   #14
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Thank you all sooooo much for all the advise!!! I will look into the Hunter Force balancing here soon. And is that e-brake cable something I should be able to see on my own without equipment? And what does the problem part of it look like if it is the e-brake cable chaffing? I've heard that about these cars too and how its a common squeak problem. And I was getting bad vibration at 65-70 highway speeds yesterday, but when I got my tires balanced this morning, it cut out a lot of the vibration but some was still there. when I drove home from work this evening, it wasn't near as bad as it was at highway speeds. And when the car is at idle, i get vibrations as well if its sitting in park. And sometimes when i'm just starting out on the road and I begin to accelerate, it'll vibrate to the point of making some of the plastic pieces in the car make noise with it. I hope this helps you guys help me.
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:50 PM   #15
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Vibration sitting still at idle is mounts. Your next to last sentence says mounts too, worse when car first starts out cold and gets better as mount heats up. Any feeling of vibration in floorpans especially pass side is probably pass side mount. Any vibration as you hit slow rolls in freeway surface to make vibration that comes and goes with the rolling is probably pass side mount too.

Some may be the rolling assembly, since it seemed to get better with balance. Maybe loose wheel bearing? FYI, I have two Focus with all 4 wheels on both not balanced AT ALL, zero weight there, they ride pretty well although I can ever so slightly tell the difference without the balance, mostly no though. Can do it if you luck out and the wheels fairly in balance by themselves.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:11 PM   #16
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Vibration sitting still at idle is mounts. Your next to last sentence says mounts too, worse when car first starts out cold and gets better as mount heats up. Any feeling of vibration in floorpans especially pass side is probably pass side mount. Any vibration as you hit slow rolls in freeway surface to make vibration that comes and goes with the rolling is probably pass side mount too.

Some may be the rolling assembly, since it seemed to get better with balance. Maybe loose wheel bearing? FYI, I have two Focus with all 4 wheels on both not balanced AT ALL, zero weight there, they ride pretty well although I can ever so slightly tell the difference without the balance, mostly no though. Can do it if you luck out and the wheels fairly in balance by themselves.
I'm gonna have someone look at the mounts for sure. I sort of had a feeling about that, but I didn't really know. And yes, you can feel the vibration in the floor and when I drive I can feel it on the gas pedal (of course its a little better right now since the balance). And I will keep the loose wheel bearing in mind as well since I had had cv joints changed sometime last year. Do you know anything about how to see the e-brake cable thing as far as the creaking and squeaking is concerned. Thanks a lot. You've helped me make some idea lead way on what to talk to the mechanics about. As far as the motor mounts are concerned, it that something I should go have replaced at the Ford dealership in town? Or should I get after market ones at the mechanic's shop?
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:32 PM   #17
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Here we go, makin' real progress now!

The cable issue can be seen like you guessed, if it's rubbed at the holders in front of the wheels a cheap fix is zip tieing a piece of rubber hose over the area (leave plenty on each side of the holder). Slice it lengthways, slide it over, and a couple zip ties at each end should hold it.

That's the most common point for the squeak, inside the car where it goes through plastic clip is a less common squeak.

65-70 is from something spinning at road speed, most often tires &/or wheels so balance helps. That odd tire should go to the rear if it isn't there now. It helps to have the wheels with the least weight from balancing at the rear as well, since even with weights to help the tire itself is one that's less evenly made & will vibrate more than others.

I had one bad one out of four new ones on Mine when I bought it, took a lot of weight, got the dealer to rebalance once - when I traced a noise like a bad front whl. bearing to the tire it stayed on the back until I got rid of that set. That cured the issue of noise/vibration for me with that tire....

Sometimes when a tire has "wobbled" for a while it starts "cupping" a bit (cup shaped wear). Once that starts it'll seldom stop even with a good balance job to help it run smoother.

$ spent towards that mount will probably help the most as a next step (Pass. side), look at the others for obvious issues at least. Replacing all at once is optimum, not always NEEDED unless damage is seen to dogbone (next likely to go bad) or trans. mount. When they aren't all done at once, the lifespan 'till the next issue is less than when new. Wear & age of the ones not done contributes to earlier failure of all. Money is tight for many of us, so doing the pass. side gets you the most bang for the buck.

That's enough to add for now, step by step you can get rid of those annoying problems.

Luck!
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:40 PM   #18
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P.S. - on those mounts, we've seen the best results with the Ford one for the passenger side. It's not too hard to do & there are plenty of old threads on here with tips. The main tool that you might not have is a hydraulic jack & block of wood to hold the engine up and adjust it's position while the mount is removed.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:47 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailor View Post
Here we go, makin' real progress now!

The cable issue can be seen like you guessed, if it's rubbed at the holders in front of the wheels a cheap fix is zip tieing a piece of rubber hose over the area (leave plenty on each side of the holder). Slice it lengthways, slide it over, and a couple zip ties at each end should hold it.

That's the most common point for the squeak, inside the car where it goes through plastic clip is a less common squeak.

65-70 is from something spinning at road speed, most often tires &/or wheels so balance helps. That odd tire should go to the rear if it isn't there now. It helps to have the wheels with the least weight from balancing at the rear as well, since even with weights to help the tire itself is one that's less evenly made & will vibrate more than others.

I had one bad one out of four new ones on Mine when I bought it, took a lot of weight, got the dealer to rebalance once - when I traced a noise like a bad front whl. bearing to the tire it stayed on the back until I got rid of that set. That cured the issue of noise/vibration for me with that tire....

Sometimes when a tire has "wobbled" for a while it starts "cupping" a bit (cup shaped wear). Once that starts it'll seldom stop even with a good balance job to help it run smoother.

$ spent towards that mount will probably help the most as a next step (Pass. side), look at the others for obvious issues at least. Replacing all at once is optimum, not always NEEDED unless damage is seen to dogbone (next likely to go bad) or trans. mount. When they aren't all done at once, the lifespan 'till the next issue is less than when new. Wear & age of the ones not done contributes to earlier failure of all. Money is tight for many of us, so doing the pass. side gets you the most bang for the buck.

That's enough to add for now, step by step you can get rid of those annoying problems.

Luck!
This helps me soooo much!! Now when I go to take the car in, I can actually explain some things that I want inspected in particular instead of standing there like a dummy :p LOL. I need to find a way to look at the e-brake cable, but i'm also considering just finding a good mechanic who has a way to lift the car look at it. And first and foremost, I really wanna get those engine/trans mounts inspected. Getting rid of the vibration is my main goal right now, even though the squeak noise is so annoying. And I may get another exact size tire to replace the odd ball tire on the rear passenger side so that if its still doing anything abnormal, i can eliminate the tire being the problem. I really love this car and I want to make it nice by any means. I am about to take it to the body shop to get a dent in my passenger door/fender fixed because my boyfriend's mother left her 4-wheeler in gear and it literally drove itself into my car ): i looked into getting a whole new door and fender because I thought it would be cheaper but its not. So gotta get my dent fixed, check my mounts and ebrake cable, and possibly take off that odd ball of a tire. You guys have helped me tons!! I wound' t be able to come up with this stuff on my own!!
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:52 PM   #20
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Thanks!

You helped US as well, with clear answers on the symptoms so we could suggest common issues that cause them.

Some of these answers are common to many cars, others are specific to the Focus and would need a Dealer, expert in these, or a Forum like this for a decent guess. The "squeak" for example was detailed in a Dealer service bulletin, which spreads the word to ALL the dealers helping make them "experts".

When you DO take it to someone, it'll help them as well to give the clear symptom descriptions that helped us. See what they say about the issues, and mention what's heard here mostly as possibilities they might want to look at. This gives you an experienced set of eyes looking at the actual car to see what may need fixing, and is better than the proverbial "laundry list" of what you want done. Any reputable garage will likely use good parts for repairs to avoid "comebacks". The one item to look out for from your list of issues, would be a recommendation to use aftermarket Motor mounts. This is the one place to insist on the Ford ones, particularly for that passenger side since we've seen reports of rapid failure (month or two) from some aftermarket replacements.

Finding a good shop/mechanic is another area of discussion, recommendations & your own comfort level dealing with them is a good place to start. One sign of an honest shop is a reluctance to talk $ before inspection & diagnosis. A flat price quoted before inspection would be a sign that a second opinion would be a good idea!

Luck!
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