Hi guys.. excuse the question on first post, just stumbled upon the forum whilst trying to solve a puzzling problem with my Focus.
I have a 1.6LX Focus with a Zetec SE petrol engine. 2002 model.
The car drives fine.. I just have a problem starting it up. It takes ages to fire up when cranked. Every time I start the car I have to hold the key for anywhere upto 10 seconds before it will fire up. My mechanic is baffled. His code reader is showing up no faults. If you start the car and give it a little gas to try get it to fire you get a serious smell of fuel into the cockpit.
So far we have fitted new plugs, new coil pack, new TPS sensor and throttle body. He has swapped out the IAC valve for another he got from a scrap car to test that but we get exactly the same problem. Also once the car has started up it idles fine for anywhere upto 2 minutes and then you start to hear almost a mis-fire, if you remove the air intake and listen you can hear the car "popping back" he says its as if a valve is stuck. rev the car ever so slightly and this goes away, I'm talking approx 900revs here and it's gone.. idling at 800-ish and it's back.
We tried switching the car off and opening the throttle ever so slightly by wedging a bit of plastic between the throttle stop position screw and the throttle cable then the car starts first time every time instantly and there is no popping back. my mechanic says the IAC valve should be taking care of that but the other one did exactly the same (unless that happened to be broken too?). He's baffled, i'm baffled. He's talking next stage is possibly a valve sticking. He says doing a good oil change and flush may release it or potentially having to remove the head and get into some serious money
Has anyone had this problem before or could advise in any way?
Also forgot to mention he's checked for any signs of a vacuum leak but couldnt find any.
I replaced the fuel pressure regulator and the car started perfectly about 10 times. whilst parked on the driveway over and over a few times it started fine and after taking a few short journeys it also started fine. The car also appears to drive a lot smoother. but..
after approx 24hrs the car is back to long crank again every time.
Upon idling the interior light flickers as if there's some kind of electrical problem. The light stops flickering when you press the accelerator.
very puzzling.. Is fuel filter and fuel pump replacement next step? If I unplug the pressure regulator to throttle body breather tube the car starts first time.!!
I dont know if it's related but when you switch off the car and get out after a journey the car makes a pinking pinking noise but underneath, sounds like metal on the exhaust heat shield cooling down or something. Is this normal for a Focus?? I know someone else with one and he says his zetec doesnt do this?!
Head temp sensor on computer was registering 115C - 126C under load.
anyone any ideas? I just seem to be throwing money at the car and getting no-where !