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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 2001 Ford Focus ZX3, automatic tranny.
So my automatic shift knob used to get stuck in park, i'd take it apart, put it back together and it would work fine. Though sometimes (without taking it apart), i'd smack the button really hard and it would go in, and I could change to drive.
This used to be my brothers car, and he said he broke a peice inside the shiftknob, and used a pen cap at the end of the stick inside the shifter, which I couldn't find. (which could make sense).
But now it's letting me shift into neutral (forcefully), pull the E-Brake, and take the key out. Which I don't think it's supposed to allow me to do on these cars.
So is it the shift knob? Or is it the module underneath the shift knob? Thanks.
 

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sounds like the safety Solenoid is not allowing your shifter to be moved

pull your center console off and look at the harness that goes to the shifter, its in a spot where it gets alot of stuff dripped on it

as seen in a few cases not to long ago,it may be a sticky solenoid

heres a few pics

this picture shows what I mean bout the connector getting stuff dripped on it and if its liquid it may short it


in these pictures shows the safety solenoid I was referring to
if you take the cover off probe the connector in the spots marked with the car running press the brake there should be 12 volts only when the brake pedal is applied

 

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Discussion Starter #3
If this is the case, would I be able to slam on the shifter button and force it into gear? Also, how would I go about fixing this? Just clean out what may be covering the harness? Thanks.
 

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yeah when you slam the shifter it basically forcefully bypass's the safety

arrow 1- that is the shifter slider when you depress the button it moves that down
arrow 2- is the tab that prevents the shifter from being shifted out of park if that solenoid malfunctions it will prevent arrow 1's slider from being allowed to move

these solenoids are common to stick some people have said spraying lube in the edges of arrow 2's edges helps free it up but if the solenoid is not functioning at all it won't release, this is why I said check the voltage to the solenoid if theres voltage when you apply the brakes that means its either a defective solenoid or a stuck solenoid

 

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Yup its under the black disk on the face of the shifter, pop the little cover off and press a key in ( the key will not go down all the way) you will know when it bypass's the safety solenoid the car will emit a constant beep

its not an actual cylinder tho its just an opening you can insert the key and press the plastic tab, any key will go in there

in this picture this is the emergency solenoid bypass the white tab hanging over the silver bell shaped end.. when the key is inserted in the face under that littke black disk it presses that flap which in turn manually depresses the solenoid which in turn unlocks the shifter out of park

 

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Feral: Isn't there a lock cylinder in the console where you can insert the key to unlock the shifter? Maybe if he had another key made, or used a spare key?
I forgot I had a video on how to do it.. this video was to show the different warning chimes but it shows how to slip it out of park if the cylinder breaks or the solenoid screws up

 

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New assembly

I ordered the new assembly (shifter,solenoid, etc.) that replaces this failed solenoid. It comes in one piece and only took minutes to reinstall. The Ford computers however seem to have the wrong part number. Happened at two seperate Ford service depts so if you are ordering a replacement make sure it's not for the Ford Escort. I also got the replacement part for half the price searching on the internet then what the local parts store offered it to me for. 230.00 locally and 130.00 with shipping online. Shifter moves as smooth as glass for now. It looks exactly like the failed one I took out. [8] I have 47,000 miles on my 2000 so let's see how long this one lasts. HA
BTW, photos above helped with removing and reinstalling. Thanks![wrenchin]
K
 

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I had that problem with my Toyota Tacoma work truck. I just disabled it by jamming something permanently down into the bypass hole and I haven't gotten any warning chimes or problems out of it. Also I don't have to press the brake in to disengage the gear now. I know it's not a technical fix but it sucks when you're vehicle is stuck at a work site and you call your supervisor saying that you can't get your truck out of gear lol
 
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