Focus Fanatics Forum banner

1 - 2 of 2 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So to make the story short, I needed a reliable to-and-from work car so the wife could hang onto the SUV to haul around the crib minions and dogs when she needed to. I have had a few friends who loved their focuses (foci?) and decided to go that route after seeing an 02 Focus SE on craigs list. I got it for about 1,700$ and was fairly pleased with myself....until I got home. The first day we had the car, I took my wife out to teach her a little how to drive a stick. Not 15 minutes after driving around the block (and stalling about 15x), steam starts bubbling up out of the hood. Luckily we are about 5 feet from our driveway so I park it, pop the hood and the resovior is spewing coolant all over my drive way. Hoping it was just a minor leak causing the system to lose pressure and boil, autozone was nice enough to sell me some more coolant and a leak plugger solution. Worked like a charm, but now I am wondering what else the seller has dumped on me. Car has just shy of 190,000 miles and I am not expecting the car to last me for 10yrs, but I would like to get my money worth out of the deal. Obviously an oil change is the first thing on my list, but this is the first manual trans car I have owned since I started doing my own maintenance and the most mileage I have had on a car.

I have read here, the car is likely going to need a new timing belt, soon, if not 90k ago. Any way to check the life on mine and is this a project, I can likely handle?

Other than that, I am likely going to need to replace shocks, and transmission fluid, but is there anything else that should be on my short list? I am aiming for fuel efficiency (but if I cant have a little fun in the car then what is the point of driving, am I right? [:D]) Wife won't let me do any expensive fun to the car though...not until tax returns come around at least.

I'm not a car mech, but I am eager to learn and dont mind losing some skin off my knuckles in the process. Any help or guidance would be appreciated.

B
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
130 Posts
First I would flush your entire cooling system and repair the leak. The "repair in a bottle" you just dumped into your coolant will cause more long term problems. Its much wiser to replace/repair the leak.

Whenever I purchase a new-to-me vehicle I go through all of the fluids and lubricants. This includes engine, transmission/transaxle, transfer case (if applicable) front/rear diff (if applicable) any greasable pivot points, PS fluid, brake/clutch fluid, caliper grease, and wax. Basically I set a weekend aside to go through all of these. It allows me to become familiar with the new car and gives me peace of mind. At that age/mileage I would tackle water pump/timing belt and thoroughly check the suspension bushings, shocks/struts, and wheel bearings. With basic problem solving skills and a shop manual you should be able to do this work yourself. If you do get stuck... forums are a great place to ask questions. Other maintenance items you should have on your list are fuel filter, air filter (you probably have a "lifetime filter" like my damn car, I just got a Steeda SRI to replace mine) clean MAF sensor, and a seafoam treatment (by ingesting a little seafoam through a vacuum line).

Clean the entire car, including a good degreasing of the engine bay. This allows you to do all of the work and maintenance in a clean environment and if there are any gasket leaks you will be able to tell. Treat any paint chips so it doesn't expand into rust.... if there is rust, treat that right away.
 
1 - 2 of 2 Posts
Top