Last Updated on by David Jon
The article at hand underscores the paramount recall of Ford Focus RS head gaskets, an issue that has been a subject of immense concern for owners of this particular model. In an extensive analysis, it delves into the reasons leading to this sudden recall and its implications on the automotive industry at large and individual carriers in particular. With a commendable focus on all related factors, the article offers a comprehensive understanding of this pivotal event while providing valuable insight gathered from reliable sources. The content is meticulously laid out to answer all potential queries, aiming to serve as a one-stop solution for anyone interested or affected by the Ford Focus RS head gasket recall issue.
Background of Ford Focus RS Head Gasket Recall
As an informed vehicle owner, it’s important to stay updated about recalls that might impact your car’s safety, performance, and resale value. The Ford Focus RS head gasket recall is one such event that drew widespread attention among the global Focus RS owner community. Not only did it affect a significant number of vehicles, but it also underscored the importance of regular vehicle maintenance and traffic safety measures.
Finding out about the recall
The recall came to light when Ford publicly admitted an issue involving certain Ford Focus RS vehicles between the years 2016 to 2017. The problem pointed to the head gasket – a critical component in the engine system of these high-performance cars.
Number of affected vehicles
According to Ford, approximately 1,282 vehicles manufactured in the United States and Canada were affected. Across the globe, the recall affected roughly an estimated 9000 units.
Causes of the issue
The issue stemmed from the use of an incorrect head gasket that couldn’t withstand the high-performance requirements of the Ford Focus RS engine.
Chronology of Events Leading to the Recall
Being aware of these issues does not only allow you to understand the gravity of the problem, but also reinforces the need for regular vehicle checks.
Initial complaints by vehicle owners
Customers started to voice concerns regarding unusual amounts of white exhaust smoke and lower coolant levels, which are indicators of possible head gasket failure.
Investigations conducted by Ford
In response to these growing complaints, Ford launched an internal investigation to determine the root cause of the reported malfunctions, confirming the misapplication of incorrect head gaskets.
Official recall announcement
Following the internal investigation, in January 2018, Ford announced a recall covering all 2016-2017 Ford Focus RS vehicles to deal with the head gasket issue.
Specific Details of the Defect
As an informed vehicle owner, it’s important to understand the function of a head gasket and the possible symptoms if it goes wrong.
The function of the head gasket
A head gasket is a crucial component that seals the cylinder head to the engine block. Its primary function is to seal the combustion chambers, coolant passages, and oil passages between the head and block, maintaining optimal pressure and efficiency.
What went wrong with the head gasket in Ford Focus RS
In the case of the Focus RS, an incorrect head gasket that was not designed for the high-performance engine was applied in some units. This gasket was unable to effectively seal the engine block and cylinder head, resulting in a range of performance and safety issues.
Symptoms of a defective head gasket
Typically, a vehicle with a defective head gasket will display symptoms, such as white exhaust smoke due to coolant getting into the combustion chamber, coolant leaks, engine overheating, and noticeable coolants in the oil which is often referred to as a mayonnaise substance.
Implications of the Ford Focus RS Head Gasket Problem
The implications of a faulty gasket are felt profoundly in vehicle performance and safety. Let’s delve into these aspects.
Potential risks to the vehicle
The prolonged operation of a vehicle with a defective head gasket can result in engine damage or failure due to loss in compression and mixing of oil and coolant. This can result in overheating, which if not caught early, could lead to catastrophic engine failure.
Risk to passengers
While the risk to passengers is generally low, a vehicle operation can become unpredictable due to decreased performance and overheating. In extreme cases, an overheated engine could shut down, causing potential hazardous situations, especially when driving at high speeds or in heavy traffic.
Impact on vehicle performance
Vehicle performance is immediately compromised due to the lack in optimum combustion and leaking of necessary engine fluids. This leads to power loss, irregular idling, stalling and poor fuel economy.
Reaction from Ford Focus RS Owners
Shortly after Ford’s recall announcement, reaction amongst the Focus RS community varied, indicating the seriousness of the recall.
Reactions from affected vehicle owners
Affected vehicle owners expressed concerns regarding their vehicle’s performance and longevity, with some experiencing frustration and dissatisfaction with their experience.
Community feedback and online discussions
Online discussions on Focus RS forums and social media platforms echoed similar sentiments, with many owners seeking clarification on the recall process and predictions on future impacts.
Case studies of owners dealing with the defect
Several owners shared their personal experiences in dealing with the defect, outlining the potential severity of head gasket failure and the criticality of addressing the issue.
Ford’s Response to the Recall
In terms of crisis management, Ford’s response was swift and extensive, featuring a mix of logistical and customer-focused actions.
Steps taken by Ford to address the issue
Ford initiated a recall campaign, with the replacement of the defective head gaskets across affected vehicles at no cost to the owner.
Ford’s communication to affected owners
Owners of affected vehicles were individually contacted and provided with information regarding the recall. Ford also set up additional channels of communication to handle inquiries and concerns from affected customers.
Actions for owners with affected cars
Owners were instructed to schedule an appointment with their nearest authorized Ford dealer to have the head gasket replaced free of charge. Additionally, Ford reimbursed owners for any out-of-pocket expense fully, resulting from the defect.
The Recall Process Explained
Understanding what the recall process involves can provide some reassurance to owners dealing with a frankly, disconcerting situation.
Process for identifying if a vehicle is part of the recall
Vehicle owners were able to identify whether their vehicles were part of the recall by checking their unique Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN) against Ford’s database.
Steps for getting the head gasket replaced
Upon confirmation that their vehicle was affected, owners were required to contact their local Ford dealer to arrange for the gasket replacement.
Cost implications for vehicle owners
Ford covered the cost of the replacement head gasket as well as any related costs due to the defect, making the recall essentially free for affected owners.
Outcome of the Ford Focus RS Head Gasket Recall
The head gasket recall event left lasting impacts on the Ford Focus RS brand and its customer base.
Performance of the replaced head gaskets
Post-replacement, most owners reported substantial improvement in vehicle performance, indicating that the new head gaskets were functioning as intended.
Overall impact on Ford Focus RS brand
While the Ford Focus RS undoubtedly took a reputational hit due to the initial defect, Ford’s proactive response to address the problem helped to mitigate some negative brand associations.
Lessons learnt from the recall
This recall highlighted the importance of robust quality screening and stringent vetting of car parts in production. It also emphasized the necessity for open and transparent communication with customers in times of a recall.
Tips on Avoiding Head Gasket Issues
While in the case of the Ford Focus RS recall, the issue was beyond owners’ control, there are general preventative measures and checks that can help keep your vehicle in good health.
Preventive measures to avoid head gasket damage
Regular servicing and maintenance, ensuring that your vehicle is not exposed to excessive high temperatures, and using good quality oil and coolant can help in avoiding head gasket damage.
Routine checks for early detection of issues
Scheduling regular diagnostic checks, monitoring engine performance, and keeping an eye out for signs such as white exhaust smoke or a decrease in coolant levels, can help in the early detection of potential issues.
Recommended services and maintenance procedures for Ford Focus RS
Owners are recommended to adhere to their vehicle’s service schedule and only use parts and fluids that are compliant with Ford’s guidelines to ensure optimal performance and to reduce the risk of engine damage.
Is the Head Gasket Recall for Ford Focus Rs Also Relevant for Ford Focus Models?
The ford focus head gasket issue is a matter of concern for owners of both Ford Focus RS and Ford Focus models. While a recall has been announced specifically for the Ford Focus RS, it is important for owners of other Focus models to stay informed. Keeping an eye on any potential symptoms and seeking professional assistance can ensure the timely resolution of the head gasket issue, irrespective of the Ford Focus variant.
FAQs about Ford Focus RS Head Gasket Recall
With a recall of this magnitude, numerous questions were asked by affected owners which required categorical response.
Common questions from affected owners
Common inquiries ranged from how to identify if a vehicle is part of the recall, the timeframe for the replacement procedure, to the performance and reliability of the new gasket.
Clarifications from Ford
Ford attempted to allay these doubts by providing detailed information on their website, sending personnel to dealerships to manage replacements, and extending an open line for any unresolved inquiries.
Understanding the recall process
Broadly, the recall process involves identifying if your vehicle is affected, taking your vehicle to the nominated dealer, getting the faulty part replaced, and finally, the possibility of reimbursement for any qualifying expenses amassed due to the defect.
This comprehensive recount of the Ford Focus RS head gasket recall is intended to arm owners with an in-depth understanding of the recall, it’s implications, and overall, the importance of being proactive about vehicle maintenance.