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fitting a tow bar


billyboggins
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how easy /difficult is it to fit a tow bar to a mk1 focus 5 door hatch?

very very simple! the mechanic side of the job including removal of the bumper etc should take no longer than 2 hours. all the holes are already drilled in chassis of the car.

what kind of tow bar are you going to fit?

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its a westfalia single socket removeable one that i bought on ebay ,thought it looked easy to fit but not too sure about the electrics

I will be willing to help you out as much as possible where i can, the electrics are not complicated at all.

Mechanical side:

To remove the bumper you will need a torx screwdriver (cant remember the size though), a 10mm socket and a philips screwdriver. I think thats all that needed. there is a bolt in each wheel arch behind the carpet and the rest of the screws are obvious when you open the boot, there is also 2 screws under the bumper.

Once you remove the bumper you will see the bumper bar which also needs to be removed, i think its held in place with 4 m8 bolts so you will need a 13mm socket.

Next thing to do is drop the exhaust off its rear and middle rubber mounts, you will also need to peel the heatshield back a bit so you can get at the bolts that secure the towbar.

With the exhaust dropped a bit and the heatshield moved, insert the main part of the towbar into the 2 rails on the back of the car and insert the metal strips with the bolts attached, takes a bit of wiggling about to get them in the holes. secure the towbar with m10 washers and nuts, you will need a 17mm socket. I had to use a universal joint and an extension bar as i didnt want to rip the heatshield off. with the main body of the towbar in place, refit the bumper.

with the bumper back on, bolt the rest of the towbar together, you will need a 24mm spanner and socket.

Electrical side:

remove the carpet as best as you can in the passenger side of the boot, while your at it remove the large plastic nut that secures the rear light. Remove the torx screw that becomes visible when you open the boot and the light cover should come off with a little wiggling about.

by removing the light, you can see what wire goes to what bulb, there is a mixture of thick and thin wires and also some of the same colour so its important you take not of their size.

Are you fitting a relay?

if you are then you will need to route a cable from the battery to the boot with an inline fuse close to the battery. The relay should have instructions with it that donate which colour of wire connects to what so you will need to follow that combined with the info you gain from looking at what wire connects where. scotchblocks are probably the quickest type of connector to use, providing they are done correctly you wont have any hassle.

hope that makes sense, lol

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thanks for all that its very helpfull,if i don't fit a relay how do you identify the wires? perhaps this is obvious once i've got the tow bar ion hand/

thanks again

without a relay is very similar but your cutting out the middle man. Instead of connecting your plug to the relay then to the cars wiring your just connecting the plug straight to the cars wiring with a buzzer(legal requirement). Same method to identify each wire, remove the lights etc.

Do you have a multimeter?

Once you have connected the plug to the wiring you can double check it with a multimeter, just get someone to push the brake pedal etc...

If i get the time either friday or saturday i could take a note of all the wiring colours to save you the hassle just hope this wouldnt be too late for you?

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i have them here wiring guides

nice one dez, i knew someone on the forum had the plug wiring guides. but being a kit i presume the plug will be pre wired so it will be the vehicles wiring that will be the PITA.

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  • 4 years later...

I will be willing to help you out as much as possible where i can, the electrics are not complicated at all.

Mechanical side:

To remove the bumper you will need a torx screwdriver (cant remember the size though), a 10mm socket and a philips screwdriver. I think thats all that needed. there is a bolt in each wheel arch behind the carpet and the rest of the screws are obvious when you open the boot, there is also 2 screws under the bumper.

Once you remove the bumper you will see the bumper bar which also needs to be removed, i think its held in place with 4 m8 bolts so you will need a 13mm socket.

Next thing to do is drop the exhaust off its rear and middle rubber mounts, you will also need to peel the heatshield back a bit so you can get at the bolts that secure the towbar.

With the exhaust dropped a bit and the heatshield moved, insert the main part of the towbar into the 2 rails on the back of the car and insert the metal strips with the bolts attached, takes a bit of wiggling about to get them in the holes. secure the towbar with m10 washers and nuts, you will need a 17mm socket. I had to use a universal joint and an extension bar as i didnt want to rip the heatshield off. with the main body of the towbar in place, refit the bumper.

with the bumper back on, bolt the rest of the towbar together, you will need a 24mm spanner and socket.

Electrical side:

remove the carpet as best as you can in the passenger side of the boot, while your at it remove the large plastic nut that secures the rear light. Remove the torx screw that becomes visible when you open the boot and the light cover should come off with a little wiggling about.

by removing the light, you can see what wire goes to what bulb, there is a mixture of thick and thin wires and also some of the same colour so its important you take not of their size.

Are you fitting a relay?

if you are then you will need to route a cable from the battery to the boot with an inline fuse close to the battery. The relay should have instructions with it that donate which colour of wire connects to what so you will need to follow that combined with the info you gain from looking at what wire connects where. scotchblocks are probably the quickest type of connector to use, providing they are done correctly you wont have any hassle.

hope that makes sense, lol

Hi, I have just joined this club last night after reading through lots of useful and friendly advice given to people. I bought my MK1 Focus just over a week ago and it has a towbar on it which I do not want. I am hoping to attempt to take it off next weekend now that I have read these instructions. I have never removed a bumper before so I am a bit nervous of that incase I break something or can't get it back on. If anyone is local to South Ayrshire and is bored next weekend then they are welcome to come and supervise me :unsure:

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The wiring is quite easy with a multimeter, most of it is a single man job, except for finding the feed for the brake light, for that you'll need a second person to put the footbrake on for a few seconds, for the other circuits just put on the circuit one at a time and test for the feed, then connect them as follows.

post-41018-0-82656400-1377639976_thumb.g

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  • 1 year later...

Last one I fitted did not even need the bumper to be removed, a quick way to find the wires is a power probe, start to finish less than an hour, one of the most simple cars bar a merc ml to fit a towbar on, as for 13 pin, only worth while for a caravan, otherwise I would not bother, also the 7 pin is not part of the mot, whereas the 13 pin is

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  • 1 year later...

Hi there, new Focus owner here - I bought a Focus 1.6  (2002) recently to tow my caravan for the summer.  it has no tow bar so i got one from a breakers, saw him take it off a Focus in front of me (although i dunno what year that focus was) and now the garage I've taken it to is saying it can't be done.  First he said it's the wrong kind of tow bar, then he said even if I got the right one, it can't be done without cutting the exhaust and costing £500+!  REading the above this sounds like pure nonsense, right?!  Unfortunatley now I've only got 2 days until i go away, supposedly with car and caravan :(  feeling very stumped...  Reading the above, I wonder if I could do it myself, or with help (I'm no mechanic or tinkerer)... or did I just manage to find a !Removed! of a garage owner (he did come "recommended")?!  Any suggestions gratefully received.  I'm in the Holloway area of Islington, N London.

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47 minutes ago, rosarola said:

saw him take it off a focus in front of me (although i dunno what year that focus was)

Unfortunately the year may matter.

Mk2 Focus came in about 2005, and towbar will almost certainly be different. (I guess it had the same body style.)

Not much help to you, I know, but putting the towbar on my Mk2 Estate was really straightforward. I purchased the bar over the internet from: http://www.just-tow.co.uk/

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