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Old 07-19-2015, 09:24 PM   #1
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2004 Ford Focus SOHC - Dropped valve seat???

Hey there,

Not to sure about this so wanted see if anyone here can help me out.

The other day I my focus over to Wal-Mart and everything was running great. I came out and started up ny car and it started sounding like it was running out of gas then loud banging and it died. Tried to start it back up and get more loud banging and tons of shaking from the engine.

I got the car towed over to my parents place where I do all of the work on my car and had my girlfriend try and start it up while i looked at it to see if i could notice anything. Engine was moving violently and herd a lot of loud banging again. Checked all my fluids and everything looks good. I havent had a chance to check anything yet in the engine and not really sure what to do.

Concerned i might of dropped a valve seat, but want to check here before i start ripping things apart and looking for a replacement engine. The car only has about 94 000 miles and hasn't hit the milestone of 100k miles that people say is the time it will drop.

Can any help me out with this? Could it be something else? What should i do to check if i dropped a valve seat? I did a tranny flush the other day by draining from cooler return line and dropping the pan and changing the filter. Put the right type of atf and correct amount. Could i of done something when i did that or is my problem engine related.

Any advice would be great. Just want to at least pinpoint the damage so i can start looking at the proper repair.

Thanks!


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Old 07-21-2015, 03:27 PM   #2
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Moved this to the SPI Performance section, where you can find more threads on SPI valve seat repairs.

First step is to pull the spark plugs to check for damage, physical damage to one of them would indicate you've most likely dropped a seat.

Mileage range for this ranges from 75k to 150k for most, and some even go 200k or more, so there isn't a mileage when it's most likely (even if many make 100k).
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Old 07-24-2015, 09:16 PM   #3
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Thanks for your help sailor. I got a chance to pulled out the spark plugs today and no. 4 is damaged. The gap is completely closed and its pretty black compared to the others (replaced them couple months ago). Also very small bits of metal inside there.

I guess next would be to assess how bad the damage is... is it something easy to repair or should i just go about replacing the engine? I can get one with 62 000 miles for about $400.00. Its a 2003 model though. I know the engine from 2001-2004 are interchangeable but arent some of the parts different that ill have to move around?? Is that hard to do? My buddy is confident we can swap the engines out after looking at the car, but isn't quite sure in thr different years working out.

My third option is just to get rid of the car. Most likely scrap it or sell it for parts.


Any ideas?
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Old 07-25-2015, 04:56 PM   #4
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If you have a compression tester,the cylinder that dropped a seat will have no compression.You can also pull the air cleaner hose off the throttle body and drop a magnet down to the bottom of the intake,there will be small chunks of seat lying at the base if it dropped a seat.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:00 PM   #5
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My 2000 did this recently. The way it happened was very similar to what you said yours did. The first thing I did was ran a compression test. My 2nd cylinder had no compression at all. That was when I knew it was major.

I pulled my head this past weekend and verified that my valve seat dropped. I plan to replace mine. There is a good Youtube video showing the process of removing the head.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:23 PM   #6
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Its a very frustrating thing. You love and treat your car well and then something catastrophic like this happens.

I wasn't willing to put anymore time or money into this car. I sold the car for parts earlier today. Neighbor has a nice Sebring she's selling and getting a good deal on that. Will be my new adventure.
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Old 07-29-2015, 08:50 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattman03 View Post
Its a very frustrating thing. You love and treat your car well and then something catastrophic like this happens.

I wasn't willing to put anymore time or money into this car. I sold the car for parts earlier today. Neighbor has a nice Sebring she's selling and getting a good deal on that. Will be my new adventure.
It is frustrating. I thought of doing the same thing as you, but decided to fix it. I actually was thinking it might be kind of fun. I also have a F150 to drive so my Focus can sit for a little while
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Old 07-29-2015, 09:03 PM   #8
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Sorry man!

If you were close to me I'd do it for you...Honestly it's easy to repair..Even if you have to replace the piston and rod....I've can do a head replacement on an SPI in 3 hours.
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