2003 Ford Focus Fuel Problems

  • 2003 FORD FOCUS
2003 Ford Focus

I have a 2003 Ford Focus LX, just your vary basic edition of the focus model. Awhile ago the engine went out on the car, as I later found out they do on most Focus's.

I should have junked the car right there but because of circumstances I was not able to. I had to let it sit for about 8 months until recently I was able to afford to get the engine replaced.

Now I replaced the engine and was able to drive it for about 2 days before it died again. The mechanic the replaced the engine gave a quick glance at it and said that the fuel pump needs to be replaced.

Before I give him more money to replace the fuel pump, I wanted to know what the likely hood that a clog in the fuel filter or lines could cause this problem. If so are there any tips on fixing this myself, I have thought about replacing the fuel filter myself already.

The exact problem is that it acts like its going to start up but just can't quit seem to turn over. Its getting enough spark and the battery is good. I've even reset the relay and the fuel cutoff switch and still nothing. Please help I really don't want to dump anymore money into this POS.
Do you
have the same problem?
Sunday, September 21st, 2008 AT 3:33 AM

1 Reply

If you are absolutely positive that the car has good sparks, and enough voltage to crank the starter like it supposed to, then that leaves a fuel related problem, or a compression problem.

When you turn your key ON, do you hear the fuel pump? If not your fuel pump is not getting power, and you have a problem in the circuit (relay, wires, fuse, ground etc).
If your fuel pump turns on, you need to do a fuel pressure test.
If low pressure, then you have pinpointed the problem. However, it doesn't mean that the fuel pump is the problem. You could have glogged filter, glogged inlet sock, defective fuel pressure regulator, leaky injectors, etc.

If pressure is good then that leaves you with a compression problem (do a compression test on each cylinder).
When you crank the engine, how does it crank? (Normal, slow, fast). If your engine is cranking faster than normal, you have low compression. This could be a broken timing belt (replace every 120,000 on ford focus 2.0 L), or blown head gasket, or cracked cylinder head, broken camshaft, or plugged catalytic converter.

If you find out that you have low fuel pressure, and want to replace your fuel filter, here's what to know:
-Get you a haynes/chilton manual
-Wear safety glasses
-Before you start make sure there's no pressure left in your system (remove the fuel pump fuse and crank your car a few times; that should do the trick)
-Your fuel filter is right beside your fuel tank
-You can replace it without any special tool, but it's easier if you have the Ford fuel line tool.
-make sure you put the filter back with the flow in the right direction.

Again, the first thing you want to do here, is doing a fuel pressure test to make sure your problem is fuel related.

Good luck and let me know how it goes.
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Monday, September 22nd, 2008 AT 1:02 PM

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