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wideawakewesley
Over the course of the last week my 56 plate Ford Focus has developed a problem with the ignition. Almost everytime I get in the car now, the key won't turn from position 2 to position 3. Eventually after taking the key out and inserting it again a number of times, it will work, but it seems completely random.

Any advice I can do to investigate the problem? I've tried a bit of WD40, but didn't use gallons of it. Seemed to have no effect.
artscot79
[quote name='wideawakewesley' date='28 June 2010 - 12:19 PM' timestamp='1277723372' post='86399']
Over the course of the last week my 56 plate Ford Focus has developed a problem with the ignition. Almost everytime I get in the car now, the key won't turn from position 2 to position 3. Eventually after taking the key out and inserting it again a number of times, it will work, but it seems completely random.

Any advice I can do to investigate the problem? I've tried a bit of WD40, but didn't use gallons of it. Seemed to have no effect.
[/quote]

sounds like you need a new ignition barrell mate ive heard of this before sticks from 2-3 then eventually sticks altogether so you cant start the car and in bad situations you cant switch the car off best have it looked at a lock smith can do it a lot cheaper than ford can they never changed the design of the locks so some can last the lengthg of the car some can go within six months no way to tell other than have the barrell repaired or replaced
wideawakewesley
[quote name='artscot79' date='28 June 2010 - 01:58 PM' timestamp='1277729289' post='86403']
sounds like you need a new ignition barrell mate ive heard of this before sticks from 2-3 then eventually sticks altogether so you cant start the car and in bad situations you cant switch the car off best have it looked at a lock smith can do it a lot cheaper than ford can they never changed the design of the locks so some can last the lengthg of the car some can go within six months no way to tell other than have the barrell repaired or replaced
[/quote]

Cheers for the info, should any locksmith be able to repair it then?
artscot79
[quote name='wideawakewesley' date='28 June 2010 - 11:05 PM' timestamp='1277762115' post='86449']
Cheers for the info, should any locksmith be able to repair it then?
[/quote]

yeah any locksmith should be able to do it
ponsaloti
Problem is not in the barrel but further back in the mechanism.
If the key goes into the barrel and turns from position 0 to 2, the key and barrel are doing there job.
57focus
[quote name='ponsaloti' date='29 June 2010 - 09:50 PM' timestamp='1277844029' post='86526']
Problem is not in the barrel but further back in the mechanism.
If the key goes into the barrel and turns from position 0 to 2, the key and barrel are doing there job.
[/quote]
So if the key and barrel are doing there job, what is preventing the key from turning from position 2 to 3 and starting the engine ?
ponsaloti
something further back
Bulletguy
[quote name='ponsaloti' date='07 July 2010 - 10:09 PM' timestamp='1278539963' post='87463']
something further back
[/quote]

Don't know how Focus ignition switches are made up but if they are similar to Transits that "something further back" could well be what is sometimes referred to as the "black cap" which is the actual switch mechanism itself. Simply replacing the barrel itself won't resolve the issue.

Whilst the barrel is made of metal, the switching mechanism is made of..........plastic/nylon of all things! :rolleyes:
The barrel does very little work, so Ford make that of metal, whilst the part which does ALL the work they make it in damn plastic! Needless to say it eventually wears away and one day you will simply be left stranded.....unless you are familiar with 'hot wiring' the ignition?
wideawakewesley
Thanks for the info guys. I've done a bit of further testing and can now start the car everytime, as long as I turn the key in the ignition slower than normal, making sure I stop everytime I hear a click at position 1 and 2. Once that's done, it'll turn from 2 to 3 everytime. I'm assuming I'm only delaying an inevitable degredation of some component, but I wondered if that might shed any further light on the problem?

I spoke to an auto-locksmith and they were prepared to repair/replace the barrel for £110+VAT all in. I assume from the info above, that might not be good enough?
Bulletguy
[quote name='wideawakewesley' date='12 July 2010 - 04:20 PM' timestamp='1278951051' post='87998']
I spoke to an auto-locksmith and they were prepared to repair/replace the barrel for 110+VAT all in. I assume from the info above, that might not be good enough?
[/quote]
Depends on how much money you want to spend.

If you want to save and have time then i'd go to a breakers yard and dismantle the ignition to look at how its made up. The important part to look at is the actual switching mechanism.....forget the barrel. If that switching mechanism is plastic nylon then [i]thats[/i] the part you will need replacing because it is that piece which wears. It may not be like Transit ignition switches....I don't know even though I have a Focus. But the symptoms you describe lead me to think that it may well be.

Alternatively just go along to any Garage with a Ford trained mechanic and he will tell you for free.
wideawakewesley
[quote name='Bulletguy' date='13 July 2010 - 07:34 PM' timestamp='1279045453' post='88243']
Depends on how much money you want to spend.

If you want to save and have time then i'd go to a breakers yard and dismantle the ignition to look at how its made up. The important part to look at is the actual switching mechanism.....forget the barrel. If that switching mechanism is plastic nylon then [i]thats[/i] the part you will need replacing because it is that piece which wears. It may not be like Transit ignition switches....I don't know even though I have a Focus. But the symptoms you describe lead me to think that it may well be.

Alternatively just go along to any Garage with a Ford trained mechanic and he will tell you for free.
[/quote]


Finally got a locksmith to look at it. They took the barrel out and found no problem with that. He doesn't believe it would be the switching mechanism either, thinks it likely a problem with the housing, although I'm not sure I believe that. Looks like it's off to the dealer to be fixed and a large bill :(
slimbo88
hi mate i have the same problem with my 01 focus zetec,i was told by my mechanic it was the transmitter in the key fob that had failed and cos of this the immobiliser is not recieving the signal from the key fob to start the engine,i was quoted between 150-200 pounds to have a new set of keys programmed!instead my mechanic bypassesd the immobiliser system and has fitted a push start button for 20 so it has done the trick! :D
wideawakewesley
[quote name='slimbo88' date='06 August 2010 - 01:25 AM' timestamp='1281053725' post='91551']
hi mate i have the same problem with my 01 focus zetec,i was told by my mechanic it was the transmitter in the key fob that had failed and cos of this the immobiliser is not recieving the signal from the key fob to start the engine,i was quoted between 150-200 pounds to have a new set of keys programmed!instead my mechanic bypassesd the immobiliser system and has fitted a push start button for 20 so it has done the trick! :D
[/quote]

Thanks for the info, doubt it's the keys though, both my keys don't work and I can start the car 99% of the time if I turn it in the ignition much slower than normal.
Madrab
The ignition actuator, as a few of the guys have mentioned is the round plastic base at the bottom of the barrel housing where the main ignition wires are connected to, the flat headed pin from the ignition barrel slots into a plastic wheel that turns within the plastic housing, it has sprung plastic pins or ball bearings and a contact wheel with copper contacts on the bottom. This wheel usually has ridges round the edge that the plastic pins/ball bearings run in and out off, that's what gives the clicks when you turn the ignition the 3rd position has the return spring, these pins or ridges can wear over time and it sounds like this may be where your problem is. I need to check but I'm sure you can take this off the bottom of the barrel by undoing the screws/clips and replace with a new one.

Cheers
Rob
wideawakewesley
[quote name='Madrab' date='08 August 2010 - 12:56 AM' timestamp='1281224805' post='91874']
The ignition actuator, as a few of the guys have mentioned is the round plastic base at the bottom of the barrel housing where the main ignition wires are connected to, the flat headed pin from the ignition barrel slots into a plastic wheel that turns within the plastic housing, it has sprung plastic pins or ball bearings and a contact wheel with copper contacts on the bottom. This wheel usually has ridges round the edge that the plastic pins/ball bearings run in and out off, that's what gives the clicks when you turn the ignition the 3rd position has the return spring, these pins or ridges can wear over time and it sounds like this may be where your problem is. I need to check but I'm sure you can take this off the bottom of the barrel by undoing the screws/clips and replace with a new one.

Cheers
Rob
[/quote]

Cheers Rob, that's a solid technical description and will come in handy as the main dealer is going to give it a free 30min technical assesment on Wednesday. I'll make sure I take this information with me even. If you can find out if the part can be replaced that'd be really handy.
wideawakewesley
So it turns out it is the ignition switch. I've had a new one fitted and all appears to be well now. I also have the old faulty part in my possession, I'll post a picture here later so folks have something to refer to and if I get around to it, I'll break it open to get an idea of what actually went wrong with it.

Thanks for all the advice. It's cost me around 100 to get it diagnosed and fixed at the dealer, which is fine by me, although I'm sure it could have been done for less elsewhere.


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