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Discussion Starter #1
well today i took my two 10's (Jensen's XJ) i think, and my "dual 5260" 400 watt amp out of my Ford Escort LX hatch, and installed it into my 01 Ford Focus ZX3. Ill explain my problem, than the setup I had in my Escort, and than my setup I put into my focus.

I am having this problem in the ZX3, sometimes when I press on the gas more than halfway closer to a full throttle, the car straights dies in the mist of full acceleration. Isnt the ZX3's alternator suppose to keep the battery charging while the RPMs are so high? If I go at a normal RPM rate, (1k-2.5k RPMS) it hasnt died yet. Its died when I was going at 85 MPHs pressing on the gas, It hasnt died while coasting or braking, only when I am pressing the gas pedal. In the morning I will test if its too much amps to pull all together with the headlights. I havent been able to test it during the day. So far it has happened four times when flooring it from a dead stop, and once when I was going pretty fast around a corner. When I plug in my RCA's which are white/black, does it matter if white is right and black is left, and vice versa? there are not labeled. I will go outside right now and take a few pictures of things i have concerns with.

The escort has an original Alternator, new battery and never had the problem i am going to describe. In the Escort when I first installed my 10's I didn't have my 500k Farad cap installed and my headlights would dim. After installing my cap and upgrading the wires never had any problems in that car. The cable setup that I never had a problem with was, From the battery was "4 gauge Walmart wire, to my 500k cap, from my cap to the amp, i had a 8G high quality power from a audio store. I used 8G grounds for the entire time, for my cap and amp. My signal wire was a 16G.

In the focus, today I install all 8G wire (high quality from an audio store) not Walmart stuff, and 4G ground wire coming from my amp (i have 4G Ground wire for the CAP which is not installed). i soldered all my head unit connections but not the best solders I could have done. I checked all my fuses before i reconnected the battery, Im concerned about how my negative battery post connects to the battery (ill post a picture tonight) . I am also concerned about the constant 12v head unit power plug because when i pulled the factory deck it had the weird plug that wasn't just straight like aftermarket head units. I ended up cutting my escorts 12v constant power plug, the zx3's plug, stripping about an inch of insulation, and stuffing the wire on the zx3 as far as i could into the escort's straight plug. My "firewall" hole, i drilled threw the metal into this weird carpentry kind of material right next too where my clutch would be (i have a ATX). I did not put a grommet. The headlights do dim, not the dash at all. My battery in my Focus is brand new, few months old with less than 100 car starts on it.

I don't know what I did wrong? I am going to take voltage readings and Resistance readings tomorrow, Please help guyss!
 

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You may have more than one problem, in my experience I have always grounded my amps to direct metal. Did you sand the metal before attaching your ground, I cant tell from the 6th picture. Also the negative cable attached to your battery looks a little shaky, I would pic up a terminal attachment and connect it that way. Only other thing I can think of is your shorting out somewhere, personally by the sounds of it (and I hate to say this) if this was happening to me I would start from scratch and check every wire from start to end.

By the way did you mount the amp on the back side of the rear seat?

One last question, the negative cable that you added to your battery - where is it going/connected to ?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
which cord coming from the battery? left middle or right? the amp's ground is sanded down,
and my amp is mounted on the back of my sub.
today im also gonna get voltage readings, post them, change the negative battery terminal, and sand down all my grounds.
 

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Vince your Moderator
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Power and grounds should ALWAYS be the same ga. Sand down the battery ground where it connects to the fender. Cover with dielectric grease.

Post results.
 

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That small ground wire to the battery that's held together with a wire nut could be the whole problem.

Intermittent connection there would kill the engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
That small ground wire to the battery that's held together with a wire nut could be the whole problem.

Intermittent connection there would kill the engine.
The ones that are like exposed strands of wire? Or, the only one that is connected by a bolt? I am going to switch that whole terminal out tomorrow after work.

Power and grounds should ALWAYS be the same ga. Sand down the battery ground where it connects to the fender. Cover with dielectric grease.

Post results.
Ill sand that ground cable down and follow the others down and see if i can try to sand them down as well.
I know that it shouldn't be off-balanace as in 4G power wires with 8G ground wires, but it doesnt help that I have 8G power wire, with 4G ground wires? both are high quality wires, not cheap stuff.

Update as of Thursday,

--In the morning before I drove my car for the day, I sanded down the ground coming from the amp, and sanded the bolt itself.

--I noticed that the power wire, and ground cables going into the amp where somewhat loose, so i made them as tight as i possibly could, and shoved them nice and good in there, and tighted the nuts down good.

--After driving the car during the day, I pulled my deck out slightly because the case around it doesnt really lock it into place and its sliding in there, Upon touching the top of the deck it was really hot. Its a new HU, i bought it only about a month or two ago. Could it just be because of the heater vents right there? Is this bad?? Could this possibly melt my solder or make the tape loose to where the wires are exposed and cause a short?

--I did a voltage reading from the Battery to see if the amp is pulling any kind of noticeable voltage and i dont think its pulling that much since its a 400 Watt.
Volt reading from battery with car off : 12.68
Volt reading from battery with Amp on (Vol. 20/50) : 14.70
Volt Reading from battery with Amp on (Vol. 40/50) : 14.69

--Another thing I am concerned about how its all wired is how the constant 12v straight plug going into the HU is. I had to cut the existing plug from the factory HU on the ZX3, and cut the straight plug from the Escort, I pulled all of the wire from the Escort's plug out, stripped about 1 in. of wire from the focus' constant 12v HU power source, and pushed it GOOD and far in there. I than used outside/inside high quality electrical tape and heat shrink and wraped it just around the tip of the end of the metal connector (the plug gets a full metal contact). The tape is pulled tight so the elastic quality of the tape were used.


I am in dire need of help to get these problems fixed... Thanks for the help guys
 

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Discussion Starter #9
One last question, the negative cable that you added to your battery - where is it going/connected to ?

I didnt add any cables to my negative termials, youre talking about the ones that are exposed, or the single bolted down one?

before my Fuel Pump relay went out I sent my focus to my mechanic (hes had it a total of seven times, now i fix it myself.) around the first time he had it for 3 weeks, he said it was a computer problem, got it started i guess, cost me around 100$,
2nd time, it was a fuel pump fuse (15A in relay box), cost 5$ lol
3rd time, he said the grounds were bad, and my car was returned with this mickey mouse rigged up setup on the - terminal. Which i think is bs.. 50$ later,
4th time, he couldnt figure it out, so i towed it back to my house, i put all the wires nice and tight in there and bolted it down.
5th time, he said it was the 15A fuse once again.... 25$ this time?
the sixth time, he said it was the fuel pump! he wanted over 500$ to fix it! so i said hell no, and decided to fix the car myself, i eneded up getting a pump assembly from a 2004 focus SE (i have a 01 ZX3,) and put a 35$ Ebay pump in. Still no start... upoin looking on these forums somebody suggested the un-likely possibility of it being the Fuel Pump Relay which my mechanic tottally overlooked... paid 10$ at autozone, and now the car is my daily driver. I suppose at 160k miles tho it was about time to replace the pump even if it was a ebay pump haha[cool]

now the car is my daily driver, and this mechanic has inspired me to fix my own cars! straight ripps me off!! He also charged me 400$ for a valve cover replacement, 350$ for a tune-up.... before i noticed everything is RIGHT on top... and i think 300$ for sway bars... which now i still have a sway bar sounding knock coming from the front driver side tire (lower speeds more noticeable, barely ever knocks at high speeds)
 

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Question:
"--Another thing I am concerned about how its all wired is how the constant 12v straight plug going into the HU is. I had to cut the existing plug from the factory HU on the ZX3, and cut the straight plug from the Escort, I pulled all of the wire from the Escort's plug out, stripped about 1 in. of wire from the focus' constant 12v HU power source, and pushed it GOOD and far in there. I than used outside/inside high quality electrical tape and heat shrink and wraped it just around the tip of the end of the metal connector (the plug gets a full metal contact). The tape is pulled tight so the elastic quality of the tape were used."
Is this cable running directly to the battery?
 

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what a crap wiring job.....take your time and redo ALL of it and learn some wire management skills, use heat shrink NO EXPOSED copper. GEEZ why do people half ass shit.

WTF plastic wire twist caps..... dude solder that shit or take your car to a reputable audio shop and have them do this job right.


get better terminals, fuse should be no more than 6 inches from the positive terminal this shit is whack man.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The twist cap was actually my "mechanic" . I already plan on redo the hu solder joints, and i cant find a pos terminal that matches my old one
 

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^ that is your antenna wire. You can find extensions online for a good price. You can also find the OEM negative battery cable on rockauto.com
 
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