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Discussion Starter #1
I have had my 2012 Focus SEL for about a month and last night I was driving home about a distance of thirty miles. It was only 50 degrees out and about 5 miles from home I got a high engine temperature warning. I pulled over and watched as the temperature level dropped surprisingly fast and then slowly drove the rest of the way home as the needle bounced up and down way faster then i've seen temperature fluctuate before. I let it cool down and checked the coolant which seemed a bit low but not seriously. Later we went out to dinner and it ran fine and the temp stayed in its normal range.

This morning it wouldn't start! Just turned over and didn't try to pop off at all, just nothing. I popped the hood and checked the coolant again, totally empty in the overflow tank except for a lot of foamy white gunk. Bought a gallon and filled it back up, still won't start at all. Checked the oil, no antifreeze in it thankfully.

Will have it towed in tomorrow morning and post when i get more info.
 

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Well got it hauled in and it looks like I'll be driving a loaner for awhile. Oil in the antifreeze and vice versa. Waiting to hear back from Ford now on what they want to do.
 

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...Oil in the antifreeze and vice versa...
That is crazy, did you just have it serviced or did it come from the factory like that?
 

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That is both unacceptable and worrisome.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Just got back from picking up my 2012 fusion as a loaner car. that thing is pretty sweet, definitely can't complain about that. service manager was very helpful, said he had been on the phone with ford engineers today talking about it.

The strangest thing is that now that it's at the dealership it is running better. My suspicion was that this problem has been happening since it was built and it finally affected the engine enough to run poorly, but since its running good now i don't know what to think. ANYWAY, im happy that Ford is getting involved, they confirmed to me that nothing like this has happened on any 2012 Focus other then mine. The engineers will be calling tomorrow morning to let the dealership know how to proceed.
 

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Oil in coolant is usually a sign of a bad head gasket. They should do a cylinder leak-down test to verify. That coolant you lost went somewhere, so there's got to be a problem with water getting where it should not be. I'd be really surprised if you don't have water in the crankcase as well.

Good luck...
 

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oil in coolant is usually a sign of a bad head gasket. They should do a cylinder leak-down test to verify. That coolant you lost went somewhere, so there's got to be a problem with water getting where it should not be. I'd be really surprised if you don't have water in the crankcase as well.

Good luck...

bingo!​
 

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Well I talked to the dealership again and here is what Ford had to say.

They told me that when the cold weather kit was installed (from the factory) it created an air pocket in the coolant system that was not properly bled out and when it finally worked its way up that caused the engine to overheat. They flushed the radiator at the dealership to get rid of whatever type of "oily substance" was in it. Ford did not offer an explanation for this. the dealer also changed the oil and there was no sign of coolant in the oil so thats good. Also, i mentioned that it wasn't starting and ran very poorly. Now that its at the dealership it runs great so the service manager took it home for the night with the computer hooked up to try to get it to run poorly again. The computer did not throw any check engine codes except for the overheating.

I guess if it runs good tonight and tomorrow i'm going to have to take it back and see if it ever acts up again. Probably about halfway through my Chicago to Minnesota drive for Thanksgiving next week...at about 1am... in the middle of wisconsin...where cell phones dont exist
 

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Not the first time I've heard that reason for cooling issues. Different car brand too. I'm amazed at the small amount of anti-freeze needed for today's cars. Air in the system can and does cause overheating. Just hope it didn't cause any warping.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Well my thought is that if there was an air pocket that big (it took over a quart to fill it back up) that it should have been running way too hot ever since i drove it off the lot. I'm still thinking that there is a small head gasket leak and i'll be right back where i am now in another thousand miles or so. I am still a little surprised they didn't find any coolant in the oil but i guess if it's such a small leak it could be burning off. Going to find out when i pick the car up if they added any silver seal or any other kind of stop leak to the coolant tank and make sure they pressure tested the coolant system.

So for now, when i get it back today, i'll just be checking the overflow daily and monitoring the temperature gauge very closely to see if it acts up again. I might also see if they still have the coolant they flushed out so I can have it tested and see exactly what was in the coolant in the first place.
 

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Well I talked to the dealership again and here is what Ford had to say.

They told me that when the cold weather kit was installed (from the factory) it created an air pocket in the coolant system...
I am not buying this statement from the dealer. There is nothing different engine wise on a car equipped with the cold weather package. Could of been air in the system, but the cold weather package was not the cause.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
There is nothing different engine wise on a car equipped with the cold weather package.
There is definitely something different engine wise on this car, the block heater.

They flushed the coolant, refilled it, did a compression check, and a pressure check on the coolant system, changed the oil (there was no coolant in the oil) and did some kind of ecu upgrade that was due on it (unrelated) They put 120 miles on it with my consent to try to get it to run poorly or act up again and it didn't so there is not much else they can do at this point unless it starts running chitty like it was before or overheats. Its not like they can just start tearing it apart hoping to find the cause of the problem, if there even is another cause. It is possible that the poor running was unrelated and was a result of bad gas because there has been a string of that around this area (just another reason i absolutely hate illinois and can't believe i moved here but that is another story) It seems like a pretty big coincidence but it is possible i suppose. I'm taking it back today and we'll see if it acts up again in another thousand miles. I'll be putting 1600 miles on it this wednesday.
 
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