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Ford Focus, Hatchback, Sedan, Wagon
#236 of 338 2005 Focus SES Alignment Problems
Jul 31, 2007 (10:09 am)
Hello all. This forum seems very informative and I am hoping it will suggest a fix to my problem.
I bought my adorable 2005 Ford Focus SES brand new. It now has about 45,000 miles on it. It is a super fun car to drive and gets great gas mileage!
However, it is eating tires very quickly. I replaced the first set of tires at 22k and now I need new tires again. The problem is that the car will NOT stay aligned. I have had it 4-wheel aligned 3 times in the past two years (each time all four tires were out of alignment, ESPECIALLY the back tires). I take it to the dealership for all work. They only suggested that I get it realligned every 6 months. GAAAD!! They must be joking!
Is there a recall or a replacement kit I can get to fix this problem? I can not continue to buy a set of tires every year.
#237 of 338 Re: 2005 Focus SES Alignment Problems [mrsdoni]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Jul 31, 2007 (10:15 am)
I'd suggest getting an alignment elsewhere and doing 5,000 mile tire rotations. Also, tire mileage depends on how you drive and the quality of the tires you are buying. For most drivers, a set of OEM tires on a lower priced car are usually done about 30,000 miles, so you aren't too far off the mark. Mine are shot at 30K, and I think it's only because of the quality of the OEM tire. What are you running on there now? Did you replace with the exact OEM tire?
also if bad alignment were the problem, your tires would show conspicuously suspicious wear patterns.
#238 of 338 Re: 2005 Focus SES Alignment Problems [Mr_Shiftright]
Jul 31, 2007 (11:03 am)
Keep in mind my problem is NOISE the tires make due to the car not staying aligned.
The rear tires DO have very bad irregular wear. So much so that when rotated to the front, they sound like tractor tires The tread depth is still very good but the noise they create is horrible. I replaced the orignial Pirelli tires (because of the same noise issue) with BF Goodrich (recommended to me) of the exact same size that came on the car.
I have taken the car to two different dealerships for alignment. The car will simply not stay aligned. I drive the same roads I have driven for the past 12 years (all paved). My last vehicle was an Explorer that would get 65K + to a set of tires and was rarely out of alignment for the 185,000k miles I drove it.
Does anyone else have to get their Focus 4-wheel aligned every 3-6 months??
I guess I was hoping there was a recall on it that would fix the problem.
The gas savings seems to be going towards tires & alignment instead of my pocketbook. I am looking at the explorers again and thinking of trading up.
#239 of 338 Brought car to be fixed and something still off..
Jul 31, 2007 (1:35 pm)
I have an 05 Focus Zx4 and jumped a curb hard enough that it triggered the air bag(but didn't come out) and made that loud backfiring noise when I went over it.
Brought it to the dealership and they fixed the alignment and supposedly test drove it and said it was fine. They said the car considered that jump an "accident" and something was bent but it was nothing that needed to be fixed or would cause problems other than if I get into an accident, the air bag won't deploy. So I waited and saved $1500 that I don't have.
- Alignment still seems slightly off.
- Newest issue I am noticing on the highway, I'll be doing like 50 and won't really push on the gas to stay there or because I want to slow down. When I do this, the car now jumps a few times until I push on the gas or brake.
- Also seems like I have to push harder on the gas when I want to go faster.
- Sometimes the car seems ..shaky. Either it's stopped or I've gotten used to it; I'm not sure.
Something just seems..off. I don't know. Before it always had that new car feel to it and since that incident it doesn't. Any ideas?
#240 of 338 Re: 2005 Focus SES Alignment Problems [mrsdoni]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Jul 31, 2007 (5:39 pm)
I still think that whoever is doing the alignment doesn't know what they're doing. The only other explanation would be a bent frame, but then the car would not align in the first place. Have you ever been hit? Do you know the car's history from Day One?
I don't think 65K on tires is the norm anyway, so you were very lucky on the Explorer. If you are in the San Francisco area I can recommend an alignment shop that knows their business and would be able to get to the bottom of this very annoying problem.
it would be helpful to see a photo of the tire wear patterns. Some types of wear are not actually alignment issues, such as "cupping" (suspension) or center-wear only or two-sided edgewear (inflation issues).
#242 of 338 Should I buy a 2003 Focus?
Sep 01, 2007 (5:21 pm)
Are 2003 Focus models considered "past the hump" of many of the problems that plagued early Focuses? I really want a wagon with the 2.3 engine (I'm in NY so they are available here).
#243 of 338 Re: 2005 Focus SES Alignment Problems [Mr_Shiftright]
Sep 01, 2007 (6:31 pm)
Thanks for your reply Mr_Shiftright
Since my last post, I have taken my Focus to another tire shop in town and purchased 4 new tires.... they are soooo quiet compared to the old set!!
They said that the "cupping" issue is probably due to the suspension and that another customer with a Mazda Protege (same suspension as my SES Focus) had the same problem. They recommended a 'harder tire' instead of the high performance tires which are 'softer'.
Every 5k miles, I will get them rotated (it's free! Yay!) and will get the alignment checked at the same time. Hopefully, these will wear out evenly...
Sep 01, 2007 (6:36 pm)
Brought my car back and went on a test drive with the guy. He felt something off too and said it was shakey but the alignment was fine. Turned out to be the balance because of a bent wheel. So for some reason they took my front wheel off and put it in the back so of course it's still bumpy and messed up. (Also, already had tires rotated so now I'd have one old front in the back and an old back tire..) It still sucks on bumpy or unpaved roads and I feel every bump I hit. I'm surprised I haven't been pulled over yet for drunk driving because of all the swerving I do now to avoid potholes and bumps. I had to stay around 60 on the highway the other day because it was so irritating.
If I didn't have to get out of there fast, I would've just asked for a wheel replacement. So I'll be doing that next.
#245 of 338 Re: 2005 Focus SES Alignment Problems [mrsdoni]
Sep 07, 2007 (6:42 am)
Hello Mrs Doni, I have a similar story. I bought my daughter her first car, she makes the payments. A 2006 Ford Focus. This will be the THIRD SET of NEW TIRES !!! And its only 48K miles. I didnt realize it happen so fast thjat the REAR TIRES were wearing out. A Firestone dealer told me that he had a customer with only 8K miles and the REAR TIRES wore out too. Theres a problem with the REAR WHEEL ALIGNMENT on the Ford Focus. And by the way I had the best GOOD YEAR TIRES that money could buy!!! The Attorney General of Florida (MR. BILL) doesnt seem to be pressing the LEMON LAW ISSUE. The dealer BEV SMITH FORD, of WEST PALM BEACH, wants to push it off as a MAINTENANCE PROBLEM, as so does the FORD MOTOR CUSTOMER CARE...and that was established before I have even taken the car in to have it inspected!!! THIS PROBLEM HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH TIRE ROTATION !!! It's the cambers, and a new kit would probably solve the problem, and unfortunately the dealers dont want to "annie up" to cost!!!