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Speedo Drop To Zero, Engine Man Light, Battery Light And Fuel Light Came On... Help!!


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#1 MrsEaton23

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 02:47 PM

Hi everyone!

Before I start, I want to say that I have been reading these forums for months and I managed to fit a new throttle position sensor by myself 2 weeks ago based on the ford focus club's posts from years gone by! I really need some help, I'm totally baffled by the faults my car seems to have... I'm scared that they're intermittent 'gremlins' that ill never fix! I'm a total novice but I'm good at DIY (I'm
The 'man' of the house haha) so ill try my hand at anything simple. The TPS job literally took me 5 mins, that was easy enough.

Anyway, can I give you an overview of what my car has been doing and then maybe you can give me some ideas and advice??

1. The car started to hesitate on acceleration, it feels more like something is 'slipping' or misfiring. It does it if I slam my accelerator down. So, slip roads, it hates slip roads. It kind of... Jumps? Such a strange feeling. Revs dip with it too sometimes. I had diagnostics at ford which threw out error code 'TPS RANGE LOW' - so I bought a new one n fitted it myself. All it's done is made my acceleration better for about a week :/ fault remains

2. Speedo keeps randomly dropping to zero, radio cuts out and then after a few seconds or minutes, it comes back on!

3. Today, I was driving along and the speedo dropped. This time, it lasted for about 10 minutes. Then the battery light came on, then my fuel light, then my engine management light came on and then the car literally just gave up and my power steering and brakes failed. I tried with all my strength to drag it into a side road and called the RAC. Critical point here - the car DID NOT cut out and restarted again with no problems.

RAC turned up and said it would be a drive belt or alternator. Checked both and they were in good condition. All levels were fine (oil, power steering fluid, water etc) battery is fine too. So, the RAC man was baffled. He asked me to drive home n if it happened again, he'd stay right behind me. Well, it drove perfectly all the way home!!! Grrrr!

What on earth might have happened to my car??

I thought loose wiring but I'm not sure why that would cause the loss of powered steering?

It's a 2000 plate 1.8 LX ford focus. HELP ME!! :)

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#2 Stoney871

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 03:16 PM

Sounds like you may have the dreaded but common speedo sensor failure, because the ECU is no longer getting accurate speed data it believes the car is stationary and drops power to the engine.

This can cause stalling and sluggish handling.

Sounds like your car stalled in slow time.

I recommend you get the sensor replaced or at least get the wiring to it checked as it can break causing an intermittent fault.

When the speedo dropped did you also notice if the tacho stopped counting up?, this would definitely point to the sensor.

The parts required are about £25 on eBay but changing the sensor can be a bit of a pain as it's on top of the gearbox housing and is a sod to remove as it fits in very tightly.

TBH though, the retaining pin is the hardest part as the original ones aren't too sturdy.

 

http://www.ebay.co.u...=item231846c1bb



#3 MrsEaton23

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 03:33 PM

Hey! Thank you for your reply! I've recently been reading up about the sensor and yes i think it could possibly be that. Funny you mention a slow stall too because the RAC man instantly asked if the car had stalled but had kind of instantly bump started itself as I'd carried on?? Haha! I said that surely I'd have felt it stall and then bump!?

So are we saying that the loss of brakes and powered steering was possibly from the slow stall of an engine thinking that I aren't needing any power because I'm stationary? Also - yes the tacho stops completely when my speedo dies.

Anyway, other than that, I've had a few people mention the air flow sensor.

#4 dezwez

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 03:43 PM

had same thing happen it was speed sensor
hard to get them out

#5 Bass Junkie

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 03:45 PM

Speed Pulse Sensor failure. It's such a common fault So common i'm just about to change mine for the 3rd time as I'm having these issues too. Might be an idea to dump and refill the gearbox oil as the failure 9 out of 10 times is due to swarf contamination.



#6 MrsEaton23

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 04:02 PM

Thank you so much guys. I have a friend that works for a recovery garage, it's going into the garage next week for MOT advisories (normal wear n tear in swing arms/bushes) and the guy I know seems quite happy to have a look at anything that's bothering me and doesn't really charge me any extra.

Maybe I could buy the new sensor and get him to fit it? The TPS was a piece of cake and didn't involve me trusting my body under a jacked up car which scares me slightly! :)

#7 MrsEaton23

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 04:03 PM

Also - do u reckon this speed sensor would be causing the loss of power/hesitation/slipping/jumping feeling on acceleration?

#8 MrsEaton23

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 04:15 PM

Ooh - just remembered!

It also idles rough at 700rpm which I think is low. 1100rpm when starting cold and 700rpm once warm after about 10-15mins.
And sometimes the revs don't drop when I change gear or when the clutch is depressed.

#9 Stoney871

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 05:03 PM

All to do with the speedo sensor.
The ECU relies on a lot of sensor inputs to function correctly so duff data reslly confuses it.
Swap out the sensor and you'll definitely see the difference.

#10 MrsEaton23

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 05:53 PM

Okay guys, just took it out for a spin with my neighbour to see if it would replicate the fault and it did it 4 times in about 2 miles. It cuts out completely at junctions and at slow speed now.
I'm getting a bit emotional now ;) women aren't meant for this diagnostics fun ;)

#11 Stoney871

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 06:22 PM

Definitely the sensor.

#12 artscot79

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 11:26 PM

Speed sensor faulty or incorrect battery faulty dash cluster all cause the above the speed sensor being the most likely but the radio issue may be down to a faulty cell in the battery or the wrong battery fitted ide say you have more than one fault as the radio doesnt usually go off when its the speed sensor

#13 MrsEaton23

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 08:28 PM

Hi everyone.

Just thought I'd update you on the fun and games I'm having with this issue.

Mechanic I know has done me a massive favour and picked my car up for me yday morning and took it for diagnostics. No codes/errors found.

He found the 'breather' pipe blocked? Something to do with creating a vacuum in the fuel tank he was saying. He also found the pipe that the TPS fitted to all blocked up with carbon and he said that explains why it was reading the TPS was faulty weeks ago. So essentially it's had a new TPS for no reason.

He cleaned all that out and now it drives like a sports car, really keen and sharp and quick. I was majorly impressed and it feels much happier.

Drove it home today and guess what!? The speedo dropped to zero and I lost about 50% of power, it didn't matter how much accelerator I gave it, the car wouldn't go over about 1800rpm. It just died and it got to about 30mph max. The whole time, the speedo was dead.
Then all of a sudden, the speedo jumps back into action and the car revives itself and got full power back!

What the HELL!??

#14 wase16ll

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 08:48 PM

i would look for a fault in the power supply system...battery/connections/earth leads etc



#15 Stoney871

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 12:25 PM

Definitely the speedo sensor.
Classic symptoms.

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