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Matt, Mechanical Engineer
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 22896
Experience:  BEng hons Mech engineering, in auto industry 22 years
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Ford focus 2002 1.6 zetec. Wass very very wet and windy last

Customer Question

ford focus 2002 1.6 zetec. Wass very very wet and windy last night now car wont start. Solenoid clicks and can see alternator rotatinf very very slowly - perhaps seeing vanes moving at 1cm per second, almost nothing. Engine not seized. Battery fully charged. Figuring water has got in somewhere? how do i get to relevent connections and check them?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  Matt replied 1 year ago.


this certainly sounds like a low battery voltage so if you're sure that the battery is in fact fine ( have you tried a jump start from another car?) then I'd remove the engine bay fusebox lid and ensure that its all clean and dry in there

then double check the main battery connections for tightness and cleanliness

if these are OK then trace the battery earth lead back to the engine / chassis and confirm that this end is also tight and clean and if this isn't the engine earth connection then locate the heavy wire that earths the engine too and check this too

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Brand new battery (1 week old, also new alternator) reading at 12.5v. Battery terminals clean and tight. All electrics works dashboard dials, headlights, radio, wipers etc etc. Started ok yesterday. Can hear starter solenoid clicking repeatedly with constant rapid frequency of clicks ie not intermittent/inconsistent clicking. Obviously power to solenoid (which on this car is actually part of the starter motor). Engine is not seized as rotated it manually without difficulty.
Tracing the wiring to solenoid and starter is problematic primarily because I don't know where the starter is located and the Haynes manual I have (as is generally the case with Haynes) is not very helpful on this. So what I'd like to know is where is the starter and is there a way to override the solenoid and directly power the starter motor just to check that it's is functional and then I'll be able to find the electrical fault for surely if the starter works that must be the only other option.
Expert:  Matt replied 1 year ago.


the starter should be located on the back of the engine block just under the exhaust manifold

this image shows where it bolts up

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi, looks like the problem is an electrical drainage as battery was down to just 4 volts this morning. Recharging battery now but apart from doing the obvious like disconnecting stereo, dash camera etc how do I go about finding any further leakage? Electrical systems are supposed to be a nightmare to diagnose and I've not done any before. Was thinking as a starting point going through the fuse box removing one by one whilst measuring amperage drain from the battery on a multilmeter, which would isolate at least the system at fault?
Expert:  Matt replied 1 year ago.


that method of checking current drain is exactly what I'd recommend to narrow down what circuit is giving the issue

A typical current drain with everything off and un-alarmed should be around 0.05Amp and if its higher than this remove a fuse and re-measure, if measurement doesn't change then replace the fuse and remove the next.

Expert:  Matt replied 1 year ago.


do you still need help?

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