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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I recently bought a 2009 Silver Ford Focus SE back in Feb of this year. Since around a week or so ago, I have been experiencing some issues lately where the dashboard Engine, Battery, and oil lights would suddenly come on, and the engine would shut off while i'm either driving, reversing, or making a turn which also makes the steering wheel lock up. Also seems to me as if it's happening more so when I sometimes press down on the brakes. If I put the car in neutral or park, and turn the key, the engine will turn on without issue. Also took the car to AutoZone and had both the battery and alternator checked, and they told me both were fine.


I called a mechanic friend of mines to check the issue for me, as I'm not really an expert on cars. He plugged some device into the OEM port, and was getting a p1780 code, we then popped the hood and to find out the engine is misfiring, when he opened up all 4 the spark plug wells, we found out oil has been leaking into all of them. He drained as much of the oil as he could, cleaned the spark plugs as well and put everything back. I went and took it yesterday to my local Ford dealer to have them check it out. This is the second time I had take it there, back in April they had to replace the ignition lock module due to the car not starting up sometimes. This time I had both the horn and the valve cover gasket replaced. And apparently the error code my mechanic friend was receiving had somehow been wiped from the system, so they we're not getting any errors at all when they checked. Was also told that I needed all 3 powertrain mounts installed, which I declined due to it being so expensive to have that job done through them. After picking the car from there earlier this morning, and $490 dollars later, I've had the engine shut off on me three times today while driving.[:(!] This is infuriating as all hell. So I'm here wondering if anyone had any ideas as to why this issue could be happening?
 

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Ford dealer = profit center. I would look for a reputable independent repair shop for future diagnosis/repair (look for one that is ASE certified).

Was the $490 for the VC gasket and horn?

P1780 is a transmission DTC and I feel it is unlikely to be the cause of the engine shutting off but I could be wrong.

Is the engine suddenly 'shutting off' at cruising speed or is it 'stalling' during low speed maneuvering?

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Hello, thanks for taking a moment to read my thread. As for the $490, from the paperwork given to me, $325 was for the labor, $123 for the parts, And 32 bucks for sales tax when broken down.

As for your other question. I really want to say it's during low speed maneuvering. I mean the engine did shut off as I was in the middle of making a left turn up the street from where I live, seizing up the steering wheel which caused me to nearly hit a curb. The second time was when I was coming to a stop during a red light at an intersection. Also when this happens the auto door lock seems to go off as well.
 

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Agree with Paul about finding a shop vs the $$$ dealer.

You mentioned the steering wheel locking up when the engine dies and you mentioned that the dealer replaced your ignition switch/lock months earlier. Might be related. Your steering wheel shouldn't lock just b/c the engine died.

Your P1780 code:
https://www.bluespringsfordparts.com/blog/dtc-decoded-p1780/
 

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The best mechanic shops I've ever seen are not ASE-certified. The best mechanic I have ever seen is not ASE certified. I got my associate's degree in automotive technology I know how it works ASE is a money-making organization that's it. It's a multiple choice test it determines nothing.

Sent from my LG-LS997 using Tapatalk
 

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you have an electrical issue of some sort it's just a matter of figuring out what it is. I remember this Pontiac that I worked on it had a broken battery cable and depending on the angle of the car it would either connect or it wouldn't.

Sent from my LG-LS997 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #7


Sharing some photos of inside the hood of my Focus taken earlier. And it looks like someone left a little surprise wedged in there too. [:(!]












 

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Behind the 'surprise' and resting on the front engine mount there is a electrical component (ignition capacitor) that has been disconnected. Is that your doing or did you find it that way with the pliers?

The ignition capacitor bracket normally mounts to the small threaded hole towards the upper right in the second photograph I copied. Failure or inadvertant grounding of this component has been reported to cause ignition problems. My understanging is it can be completely disconnected without issue but if it is internally or externally shorted that can cause ignition issues. Im also not sure if it needs to be connected both at its grounding pigtail (which it still appears to be) and its bracket to be functional. Not sure why its unbolted like that or if it has anything to do with you issue but is very suspicious to me.

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hello. I found it that way with the pliers tucked left in there by someone, as I was taking these pics to post it on the forums. I will stress I'm not an expert on cars or their components, but I also found it strange that part you mention is not secured to anything. Also. Do you know what that P1703 code means? Could that have anything to do with my issue?
 

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Hello. I found it that way with the pliers tucked left in there by someone, as I was taking these pics to post it on the forums. I will stress I'm not an expert on cars or their components, but I also found it strange that part you mention is not secured to anything. Also. Do you know what that P1703 code means? Could that have anything to do with my issue?
So that has been like that all the time you are having the engine shut down issues? Or was that left like that from the recent work you had done at the dealer? Or both?

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
I honestly don't know if it's been unbolted the entire time I've had the car, or if it is a recent thing. I've hard the engine shut down issue for two weeks now, and the ignition capacitor being unbolted, is something I just noticed after removing those large pair of pliers from around that area after having been taken to the dealer.
 

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The pliers part is nuts. It must have been wedged in tight to not fall and rattle around the first time you started the car. Things would have gotten interesting if it fell into your belts.
 

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I honestly don't know if it's been unbolted the entire time I've had the car, or if it is a recent thing. I've hard the engine shut down issue for two weeks now, and the ignition capacitor being unbolted, is something I just noticed after removing those large pair of pliers from around that area after having been taken to the dealer.
Well I cant say for certain whether the ignition capacitor has anything to do with the issue you are having or why it was left to way it was. I can say that it is designed to be a fairly benign component with the purpose of reducing ignition static thru the radio. If you took it out the engine would still run. However if it fails in a way that it is internally shorted that could cause problems with the ignition being shorted out. Perhaps the experiment would be to remove it and see if the problem goes away.

And although anything is possible I would not think a failure of the brake ON/OFF switch would result in an engine shut down situation.

Good luck
Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'll be sure to check it out. Also want to mention I notice that when I turn the ignition half-way and all the dashboard lights come on, the check engine light starts to blink, if I fully start the car it will disappear though. Not sure if that is normal or not?
 

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Give it some thought, if the brake switch is not switching on/off then PCM has no idea car is slowing down and does not switch the converter clutch off which then kills the motor at a slowdown. All lights come on at a dead motor and the steering gets super stiff suddenly to 'lock up', not really locking the steering per se. 'Trans control switch' can mean more than one thing, there really is no one switch that does that unless the OD switch is called it, the trans range sensor is one too. Converter not being off tells PCM indirectly the OD is not working right too. Why the CEL may be flashing.

OP needs to think back and see if all the dies came when he hits the brakes and the proof there. I'd fix that brake switch. And the broken ignition capacitor too.

Maybe not, could be a BCM thing with the autolocking coming back off like said.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Hmm, Actually no the only thing that dies is the engine. The radio, and/or AC being on when this issue happens, continue to function as if nothing is wrong. Only lights to come on is the Engine. oil, and battery lights and nothing more than those three. I want to also point out. The Engine can also die with the motor running while the car is in park, and the only time I notice it cut off while in drive, is when i'm moving very slow, under 10 mph or so in a parking lot.
 

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'The radio, and/or AC being on when this issue happens, continue to function as if nothing is wrong.'

Didn't say they didn't and partially correct. The a/c SEEMS to be OK because blower keeps blowing but engine dying stops a/c compressor from turning, impossible not to. The a/c if left like that would get warmer in less than 60 seconds when the evaporator warmed back up. It's off even though you think not. I didn't mention radio.

By 'all lights' I meant the engine ones, didn't think I needed to spell it out.

If not that then you have multiple issues and more $$$$$$$$$..........the autolocking error has nothing to do with normal engine dying nor the trans code for OD along with flashing light. Fix the broken cap. The brake switch also signals the TB to bump the idle speed up, maybe another reason for the dies. 5 things wrong so far.

I was trying to find a common denominator there, if you want to lean toward paying for multiple errors and fixes it's your car, do what you want.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
'The radio, and/or AC being on when this issue happens, continue to function as if nothing is wrong.'

Didn't say they didn't and partially correct. The a/c SEEMS to be OK because blower keeps blowing but engine dying stops a/c compressor from turning, impossible not to. The a/c if left like that would get warmer in less than 60 seconds when the evaporator warmed back up. It's off even though you think not. I didn't mention radio.

By 'all lights' I meant the engine ones, didn't think I needed to spell it out.

If not that then you have multiple issues and more $$$$$$$$$..........the autolocking error has nothing to do with normal engine dying nor the trans code for OD along with flashing light. Fix the broken cap. The brake switch also signals the TB to bump the idle speed up, maybe another reason for the dies. 5 things wrong so far.

I was trying to find a common denominator there, if you want to lean toward paying for multiple errors and fixes it's your car, do what you want.
Misread your previous post. I would say 99% of the engine stoppage is during brake usage. The 1% left of that iswhen it turned off while the car is in park in the driveway with the motor running, etc. I feel as if when I don't have the radio and/or AC on the issue doesn't creep up as frequent as when they are on, but it still will shut off during braking eventually. but maybe that's just my imagination. I will have both parts mentioned on here checked out to see what's up. thanks[:)]
 
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