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Fluid level checks Ford Focus 2005 - 2011 Petrol 1.4

OnDemand step-by-step maintenance & repair BETA

Ford Focus 2005 - 2011  | 1.4 Fluid level checks

  • time 5 to 30 minutes
  • difficulty 1

Underbonnet check points

1.6 litre engine A Engine oil level dipstick B Engine oil filler cap C Coolant expansion tank D Brake and clutch fluid reservoir E Power steering fluid reservoir F Screen washer fluid reservoir G Battery
1.8 litre engine A Engine oil level dipstick B Engine oil filler cap C Coolant expansion tank D Brake and clutch fluid reservoir E Power steering fluid reservoir (underneath the headlight) F Screen washer fluid reservoir G Battery

Engine oil level

1 • Make sure that the car is on level ground.
2 • Check the oil level before the car is driven, or at least 5 minutes after the engine has been switched off.
HINT: If the oil is checked immediately after driving the vehicle, some of the oil will remain in the upper engine components, resulting in an inaccurate reading on the dipstick.

The correct oil

3 Modern engines place great demands on their oil. It is very important that the correct oil for your car is used.
Engine oil grade Multigrade engine oil, viscosity SAE 5W/30 to Ford specification WSS-M2C913-B

Car care

4 • If you have to add oil frequently, you should check whether you have any oil leaks. Place some clean paper under the car overnight, and check for stains in the morning. If there are no leaks, then the engine may be burning oil.
5 • Always maintain the level between the upper and lower dipstick marks (see photo 2). If the level is too low, severe engine damage may occur. Oil seal failure may result if the engine is overfilled by adding too much oil.
The dipstick is located at the front of the engine (see Underbonnet check points for exact location). Withdraw the dipstick. Using a clean rag or paper towel, remove all oil from the dipstick.
Insert the clean dipstick into the tube as far as it will go, then withdraw it again. Note the oil level on the end of the dipstick, which should be between the MAX and MIN marks. If the oil level is only just above, or below, the MIN mark, topping-up is required.
Oil is added through the filler cap. Unscrew the filler cap and top‑up the level; a funnel may be useful in reducing spillage.
Add the oil slowly, checking the level on the dipstick often, and allowing time for the oil to run to the sump. Add oil until the level is just up to the MAX mark on the dipstick – don’t overfill (see Car care)

Coolant level

Warning: Do not attempt to remove the expansion tank pressure cap when the engine is hot, as there is a very great risk of scalding. Do not leave open containers of coolant about, as it is poisonous.

Car care

6 • With a sealed-type cooling system, adding coolant should not be necessary on a regular basis. If frequent topping-up is required, it is likely there is a leak. Check the radiator, all hoses and joint faces for signs of staining or wetness, and rectify as necessary.
7 • It is important that antifreeze is used in the cooling system all year round, not just during the winter months. Don’t top up with water alone, as the antifreeze will become diluted.
The coolant level varies with the temperature of the engine, and is visible through the expansion tank. When the engine is cold, the coolant level should be between the MAX and MIN marks on the front of the reservoir. When the engine is hot, the level may rise slightly above the MAX mark.
If topping-up is necessary, wait until the engine is cold. Slowly unscrew the expansion tank cap, to release any pressure present in the cooling system, and remove it.
Add a mixture of water and antifreeze to the expansion tank until the coolant level is halfway between the level marks. Use only the specified antifreeze – if using Ford antifreeze, make sure it is the same type and colour as that already in the system. Refit the cap and tighten it securely.
Anti-freeze type Motorcraft SuperPlus pink/red antifreeze to Ford specification WSS-M97B44-D

Brake and clutch fluid level

Note: All manual transmission models have a hydraulically-operated clutch, which uses the same fluid as the braking system.
Warning: Brake fluid can harm your eyes and damage painted surfaces, so use extreme caution when handling and pouring it.
Warning: Do not use fluid that has been standing open for some time, as it absorbs moisture from the air, which can cause a dangerous loss of braking effectiveness.
HINT: Make sure that your car is on level ground. Note that the fluid level in the reservoir will drop slightly as the brake pads wear down, but the fluid level must never be allowed to drop below the DANGER mark.
8 • If the reservoir requires repeated topping-up this is an indication of a fluid leak somewhere in the system, which should be investigated immediately.
9 • If a leak is suspected, the car should not be driven until the braking system has been checked. Never take any risks where brakes are concerned
The brake fluid reservoir is located on the right-hand side of the engine compartment.
The MAX and MIN marks are indicated on the front of the reservoir. The fluid level must be kept between the marks at all times.
If topping-up is necessary, first wipe clean the area around the filler cap to prevent dirt entering the hydraulic system. Unscrew the reservoir cap and carefully lift it out of position, holding the wiring connector plug and taking care not to damage the level sender float.
Carefully add fluid, taking care not to spill it onto the surrounding components. Use only DOT 4 fluid; mixing different types can cause damage to the system. After topping-up to the correct level, securely refit the cap and wipe off any spilt fluid.

Power steering fluid level

Note: 1.8 and 2.0 litre models are equipped with Electro-Hydraulic power steering (EHPS). According to Ford, there is no requirement to check the fluid level. However, it may be prudent to check the level every few months or so.

Before you start

10 • Park the vehicle on level ground.
11 • Set the steering wheel straight-ahead.
12 • The engine should be turned off.
HINT: For the check to be accurate, the steering must not be turned once the engine has been stopped.

Safety first!

13 • The need for frequent topping-up indicates a leak, which should be investigated immediately.
The reservoir is mounted at the front right-hand side of the engine compartment. On 1.8 and 2.0 litre models, remove the headlight. The fluid level can be viewed through the reservoir body, and should be between the MIN and MAX marks when the engine is cold. If the level is checked when the engine is running or hot, the level may rise slightly above the MAX mark.
If topping-up is necessary, use the specified type of fluid – do not overfill the reservoir. Undo the reservoir cap. Take care not to introduce dirt into the system when topping-up. When the level is correct, securely refit the cap.
Power steering fluid Ford or Motorcraft power steering fluid to Ford specification WSS-M2C204-A2

Washer fluid level

14 • The windscreen washer reservoir also supplies the tailgate washer jet, where applicable. On models so equipped, the same reservoir also serves the headlight washers.
15 • Screenwash additives not only keep the windscreen clean during bad weather, they also prevent the washer system freezing in cold weather – which is when you are likely to need it most. Don’t top-up using plain water, as the screenwash will become diluted, and will freeze in cold weather.
Caution: On no account use engine coolant antifreeze in the screen washer system – this may damage the paintwork.
The washer fluid reservoir filler neck is located in the right-hand rear corner of the engine compartment. The washer level cannot easily be seen. Remove the filler cap, and look down the filler neck – if fluid is not visible, topping-up may be required.
When topping-up the reservoir, add a screenwash additive in the quantities recommended on the additive bottle.
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