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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-02-10, 06:37 AM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Help me with my focus problem

2002 Ford Focus SE 4dr Auto - VIN 1FAFP34302WXXXXXX

I was driving home one night and in the middle of a curve on the highway (one that I probably tapped the brake on - that may be important), my car lights turned off, engine shut down, all interior lights went off (I don't recall any dash lights), wipes started moving and I coasted to the side of the road.

I tried to restart with no success. I tried a few different little things, including doing the self test on the cluster. It read the following firmware codes and dtc codes, i know the dtc codes have to be looked at with a grain of salt, no need to tell me.

dtc 262 (possibly d262 - or the d was still there from the dtc when it added the 262)
dtc 9359

The rest of the codes aren't bid deals.

I was able to get it started 5-6 times, out of about 40 tries. Each time i got it started, pressing the brake would kill the engine. No matter if the car was on or off, I couldn't shift it out of park. The air wouldn't work unless the car was running (wouldn't work in ON position) and the wipers would sometimes go in super slow motion or not at all, the switch being on or off didn't matter, they did what they wanted, but it was related to if the car was running or not.

Ok, so i ended up getting a tow to my neighbor's car shop (muffler, brakes, minor stuff) and he agreed to play with it for a bit.

So he played with it for a while, couldn't ever get it to start. We pushed it onto he rack and he shorted the starter and it turned over. He hooked up his diagnostic scanner and it showed either no codes or not ecu found. I don't have a clear understand if he was able to determine one or the other (no codes/no ecu found). He said the engine isn't seized up and it is turning over, so it's something between the cluster/ignition and the ECU.

I looked up the 262 code and it shows cluster to ACC communication error, I believe, so it sounded possible.

Ok, so he's looked it over and said go to Ford. This car is probably on it's last leg and I'd like to get another year out of it, not put another 500+ into it. So I decide to turn my troubleshooting mind on it and I figured a few things out.

How can I get the car to turn on - Start engine with foot off of brake petal and sufficient power in the battery
Car will start 100% of the time if you aren't pressing the brake petal. If it doesn't start then a jump gives it the juice it needs

And then the brake petal? - pressing it kills the engine, causes the odometer to flash, the check gas cap light and ! light stay on for about 3 seconds and the check engine light lights up.

Can I shift it? - No, not without using a screw driver to push down the hole to override the locking mechanism.

Does it drive? - At first I said no, but I figured out how to shift the car and how to start it. So if I don't press the brake, start the car, press down on the lockout and shift into reverse or drive, it goes the correct direction. HA! I freaked out at the thought of doing that, but I was able to move it from the side of the shop to a parking spot and back and back to the parking spot again. Press the brake once and the car dies!

Why did the lights go out on the highway? - I don't know, but I went back after thinking of this problem and turned on the headlights and started the car. Press the brake and all the lights go out and the above effects to the dash happens again. So the brake kills the engine and kills the lights.

So I thought this over and toss a few ideas around with the neighbor and we thought the following.

There are two switches where the brake is at. One that shows it's pressed and one that shows it isn't pressed, so an open and a close, is that how they are supposed to be, we don't know.

The computer may be fried.

There may be more switches to think about, among other things (tell me please). The things that would be switched - brake lights, shift from park release, neutral switch - please explain what the switches are for please.

So I went back and checked a couple of other things. The brake light do NOT light up. Parking lights work on the back and show red, but nothing gets brighter red when the brakes are pressed - so the brake light switch isn't lighting up the brakes.

Car starts if brake is not depressed
Car doesn't start if brake is pressed
Car dies if it is running and the brake is pressed
Car drives if you force it into gear and leave the brake alone (woo hoo)
Brake lights do not work
Can't shift without pressing release
Blower/wipers are doing weird things
All the fuses were checked under the hood and the dash - twice
Checked the connection to the ECU and it is tight
There are no water issues around the ECU area
We have not been able to pull a code from the ECU
We did unhook the battery (both + and -) for two hours

What I need
What should I check next?
Considering pulling a ECU from a pull a part place. Is this it?
Switch information?
Any advice?

Thank you all 100% in advance.

Thank you
Eddie C

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-02-10, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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Solved: Help me with my focus problem

Fixed it

It was the small black and red wire that goes to the negative terminal on the battery. The wire had broken away from the ring mount on the post. All of the problems were caused by that one wire.

It's shown in this picture (not my car)

Ford focus battery image by swtnlow97 on Photobucket

So, if your car will start when the brake isn't pressed and dies/doesn't start when it is pressed and you can't shift out of gear without hitting the lockout override, check that wire.

Didn't cost me a penny to fix it (woot!)

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 05:10 PM
Subaru/Ford guy.
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Re: Help me with my focus problem

That^ was going to be my guess a loose or broken ground, next time post on the focus part of the forum and I can get to it quicker or I know there is a couple other focus guys hanging around here every now and then.

2000 focus wagon 2.0l DOHC Zetec
04 Subaru WRX,:)

How-to directory.

Ford focus DTC codes.

Ford= First on race day.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-04-15, 07:53 PM
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Re: Help me with my focus problem

EPIC assist, man! Exact problem, exact solution. Thanks for saving me SOOO much time, money, and aggravation!
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