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Old 11-28-2008, 15:56   #1 (permalink)
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2004 Focus Transmission

I purchased my 2004 Focus Z3 brand new, May of 2004---about 4 months after the purchase, I had a work injury that left me unable to drive very much the last few years. So my Focus has 25,000 miles, thats it. Anyway today I got into the car, didn't warm it up and left. When I turned onto a street and accelerated to about 45, my automatic seemed to get stuck in gear, which is odd, since its not a stick shift. I looked to make sure it was in DRIVE and it was....it finally shifted back to normal. I am concerned because my Mechanic has informed me that these transmissions fail by 30,000 and that he has even had to replace trannys in focus at 12,000. Exactly what is OVERDRIVE? I have never had ONE issue with this car ever...it seems odd that at 25,000 miles my transmission would be going bad. Thank you for any info, it is appreciated
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Old 11-29-2008, 13:44   #2 (permalink)
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Re: 2004 Focus Transmission

The worst thing you can do is park a vehicle for a prolonged period. This allows any gunk already floating around in the transmission to gel at the bottom of the pan. Once you start the vehicle and put it in gear the 'gunk' can clog up the valve body creating shifting problems. I'd take it in for a transmission flush with such low mileage, and with any luck that will clear it up and it shouldn't cost you more than $100. Oh, I'd also find a new mechanic, as he doesn't know much about transmissions.

Overdrive is a top gear that is less than 1:1, for example, if first gear is 3:1. second gear is 2:1 and third gear is 1:1 (also known as direct drive), overdrive would be 0.7:1
Overdrive saves additional wear and tear on drivetrain components, lowers noise and aids in fuel economy. If you have the option on the shifter, put it in 3rd gear and then drive on the highway. You can then shift into overdrive at any time, just take your foot off the throttle to relieve tension on the transmission. This will give you an idea of how the overdrive works, as most people don't know. Especially those who have never driven a manual transmission with a tachometer. A general rule of thumb in 4 speed auto gas vehicles is every gear is spaced to allow a 1000rpm gap. So at 60mph if you look at the tachometer, the engine will be turning over say, 2500 revolutions per minute (rpm). If you were in third gear at the same speed you'd be turning over approx 3500rpm and in second you'd be turning over 4500rpm.
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Old 11-29-2008, 17:02   #3 (permalink)
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Re: 2004 Focus Transmission

Thanks for the info. The car has been drivin weekly, just not very far. As far as my mechanic, all he said was that Ford Focus transmissions normally start to go bad at 30,000. He knows this from experience, since 4 of his customer's have had their trannys replaced. I realized after I had asked about the overdrive...that I knew what it was.....so I felt kind of silly asking that. I have never used it. I am going to wait and see if it occurs again and if it does, then I will have a flush done. At 25,000 miles, do you think the car should be warmed up before drving? I actually viewed quite a few other focus forums, and was surprised to see all of the transmission complaints, but most of them were for the 2001 & 2002.
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Old 07-02-2009, 18:48   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 2004 Focus Transmission

Just an update on my transmission. At barely 27,000, it cost me almost 3,000 to replace the transmission. My local Ford Dealer did not give a ^%$#. I called them at least 20 times when all this began happening. Frankly even though the warranty was 3 years/36,000 miles..(my car is almost 5 years old)having purchased 4 cars from them, I thought they would at least attempt to offer some help. I ended up taking my car to one of the oldest & best transmissions places in my town. Its very interesting, I made all those phone calls..and Ford even tried to sell me another warranty for 1200, because "they felt bad" and today I get a phone from the Service Manager(who I have spoke to several times) and today he was very snotty on the phone..he basically tells me I DID have a extended warranty, it expired last month.....In any of the phone calls..did anyone EVER tell me that. I have a contract that clearing reads I DID NOT PURCHASE AN EXTENDED WARRANTY...yet evidently NOW all of a sudden I had one...but too frickin bad...it expired last month...oops! He told me "If you had brought in your car for service, you would have known you had an extended warranty" Yeah if I HAD KNOWN about it, I would have brought it there....but since I DIDN'T know about it, I had to take it to a place that wouldn't charge me 5,000...every penny count. I HATE FORD....I will NEVER buy their cars again, and I will make it my life's goal to tell everyone how much they SUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The worse customer service ever...I mean this guy on the phone was almost giddy,,,,,because I got screwed. I am very disgusted & annoyed.
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