Focus engine stalls while driving

Tiny
LENAU
  • FORD FOCUS

We have a 2001 Ford Focus with 80,000 miles on it. It is a 4 cylinder automatic. Recently the car engine has started dying while the car is moving. Going up hills, and running the A/C seem to aggravate the problem. This is something we are experiencing now, although we have had the car for almost 2 years. We have taken it to several mechanics, and none can find a problem. Recently on an extended drive (3 hrs) it began doing this about 1 1/2 hours into the trip, and continued to die not long after restarting the car. When it dies, we go to neutral and restart the car, or just shut if off altogether and restart it. It restarts right up, but then dies a short distance down the road. Please help! No one can figure this out. Should I just take it back to a Ford dealership, or continue trying the local mechanics? Thank you for any help you can give us.

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Thursday, September 6th, 2007 AT 5:11 PM

17 Replies

Tiny
NANIMO
  • MEMBER

Hopefully you have been informed by now but if not the Focus had an unofficial recall where they didn't have to let you know but if you go in with to a dealership with the symptoms they are required to fix it.

I had a 2001 Focus that had the same problem and decided to look it up on the internet since mechanics were stumped. I found a couple sites with people with similar issues. My car stalled on the highway for me, it's very scary.

There are actually 4 things they were required to repair on my model completely free of charge.

Everything you describe is what happened to me. The thing that causes it to stall has to do with the fuel system it helps to keep a full tank if you haven't noticed that yet. I had my car for a year before I had any issues then it just kept getting worse.

Good luck!

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Sunday, October 21st, 2007 AT 10:28 PM
Tiny
2CARPROS KEN
  • ADMIN
  • 11,744 POSTS

The clue is the fuel level in the tank. This is telling me there is a fuel pump issue causing the engine to stall at random times.

Here is a guide and video to help you get the job done.

This will give you an idea of what you are in for when doing the job

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-replace-an-electric-fuel-pump

You will need to raise the car up safely.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/jack-up-and-lift-your-car-safely

Here is a video of the job being done on your car.

https://youtu.be/D1AyqeftAmA

Please let us know what you find. I'm interested to see what it is.

Cheers, Ken

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:49 AM
Tiny
MIKE PAYNE2
  • 2001 FORD FOCUS
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 160,000 MILES

So, first symptom was it did not seem like it was revving as high, check engine light was always on but started flashing. Then it just ran real slow for a mile. The gauges went out as did the display, but lights and radio stayed on. At this time the engine would shut off. It did this several times, each time coming back to life. Then it shut off. It would start right back up and go 1/4 mile until it did the same and shut down. Did this for two miles until I got to work.

Any ideas?

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:49 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
  • 28,979 POSTS

The place to start is by having the diagnostic fault codes read and recorded. The people at many auto parts stores will do that for you for free. Also consider monitoring the fuel pressure with a gauge clipped under the wiper arm so you can see if it drops while you are driving.

Be aware you are supposed to stop the engine right away when the Check Engine light is flashing. That means too much unburned fuel is going into the exhaust system where it will burn in the catalytic converter and overheat it.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MIKE PAYNE2
  • MEMBER

Yes, I forgot to mention once I got to work there was steam from under the hood. It is only a ten mile total drive.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
  • 31,148 POSTS

I have seen several of those focuses overheat from a bad thermostat not opening up. Also what are the exact code numbers not code descriptions you have in the computer?

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MIKE PAYNE2
  • MEMBER

Can't get code numbers now, car caught fire and got crisped. I also no longer care about the answer, I wont be fixing the car anytime soon.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
  • 31,148 POSTS

So sorry to hear that I hope your insurance gave you something to help you get into another car.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
GONZALEZ20
  • 2001 FORD FOCUS

Engine Mechanical problem
2001 Ford Focus 4 cyl Automatic 90000 miles

This focus will run fine but only for a little while. It dies then will not start again right away but will aftr waiting a while. Ive asked people and said it could be an ignition control module. Could it be something else?

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
  • 68,419 POSTS

Has the check engine light come on? Have you checked fuel pump pressure?

What I need you to do is check for spark and fuel to the engine when it won't start. If you need directions, let me know.

Joe

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
GONZALEZ20
  • MEMBER

Fuel pump was replaced. I took a look at the car this weeknd. Let the car run till it died. Then I pulled the fuel pump relay and cranked the car and checked for spark. No spark. So does this mean the PCM could be bad back because this car has no ignition module. Spark is controlled by PCM? And also there is black sut or particles dripping from tail pipe.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
  • 68,419 POSTS

THe black soot sounds like the engine is running rich. However, that won't kill the spark. At this point, I question the crank sensor. However, without the check engine light, it becomes a guessing game. You may want to start by checking that.

Let me know what you find.

Joe

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
GONZALEZ20
  • MEMBER

I figured it was running rich thats y I thot it was the o2 sensor maybe reading lean air fuel mixture and therefore throwing gasoline in the combustion chamber and causing it 2 be 2 lean and causing the engine to die.I have not checked the code because I do not have a code reader. Closes shop is far from town. Could it be the PCM if no spark is occuring?

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
  • 68,419 POSTS

If you have no spark, it could be many things. One of them could be the PCM.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CLOUD_WALKER
  • 2001 FORD FOCUSFORD FOCUS

2000 Focus 2.0L 45000 miles. ONLY does this in warm weather. At higher speeds 45 and up engine will go to a idle. Engine has to be shut off and restarted.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:52 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACK42
  • MEMBER

I dont get what you mean "go to a idle" Does the engine quit accelerating? Lose power? Trans feel like it goes into neutral?

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:52 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CLOUD_WALKER
  • MEMBER

It is just like you take your foot off the gas, The just idels to a stop, and will only run at a idle until you turn the key off and start it back up. Then it runs fine until the next time.

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Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 AT 11:52 AM (Merged)

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