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Fluid level checks Ford Ka 2002 - 2008 Petrol 1.3

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Ford Ka 2002 - 2008  | 1.3 Fluid level checks

  • time 5 to 30 minutes
  • difficulty 1

Underbonnet check points

1.3 litre Duratec 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

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 or 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 3). 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 top is brightly coloured for easy identification (see Underbonnet check points for exact location). Withdraw the dipstick.
Using a clean rag or paper towel wipe 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 upper MAX mark and lower MIN mark. If the oil level is only just above, or below, the MIN mark, topping-up is required. Oil is added through the filler cap aperture.
Lift off the cap using a twisting motion. Top.up the level taking care not to spill the oil. Add the oil slowly, checking the level on the dipstick often, and allowing time for the oil to flow to the sump. Add oil until the level is just up to the MAX mark on the dipstick. Don't overfill. If you need to renew the oil and filter, click below

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. MIN and MAX marks are shown on the side of the tank. When the engine is cold, the coolant level should be between the two marks, but ideally on the MAX mark. When the engine is hot, the level will rise above the MAX mark slightly.
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 on the MAX mark. Refit the cap and tighten it securely. Should you need to replace the coolant, click below

Brake (and clutch) fluid level

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.

Safety first!

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 MAX and MIN marks are indicated on the side of the reservoir, which is located at the rear left-hand side of the engine compartment. The fluid level must be kept between these two marks.
If topping-up is necessary, first wipe the area around the filler cap with a clean rag, then hold the fluid level sensor wiring plug as the cap is unscrewed. When adding fluid, it’s a good idea to inspect the reservoir. The fluid should be changed if dirt is visible.
Carefully add fluid, avoiding spilling it on surrounding paintwork. Use only DOT 4 fluid; mixing different types of fluid can cause damage to the system and/or a loss of braking effectiveness. Bear in mind that the level in the reservoir will rise slightly when the cap/float assembly is refitted. After filling to the correct level, refit the cap securely. Wipe off any spilt fluid.
Check the operation of the low fluid level warning light. Switch on the ignition and ask an assistant to press the button on top of the reservoir cap. The brake fluid level/ handbrake ‘on’ warning light should come on – if not, the level switch, wiring or bulb may be faulty. If the warning light comes on and the fluid level is not low, check that the handbrake is not on. Switch off the ignition after testing.

Power steering fluid level

10 • Park the vehicle on level ground.
11 • Set the steering wheel straight-ahead.
12 • The engine should be turned off.

Safety first!

13 ● The need for frequent topping-up indicates a leak, which should be investigated immediately.
The reservoir is located at the right-hand rear corner of the engine compartment. The fluid level is visible through the reservoir body; when the system is at operating temperature, the level should be up to the MAX mark on the side of the reservoir.
If topping-up is required, wipe clean the area around the reservoir filler neck and unscrew the filler cap from the reservoir.
When topping-up, use the specified type of fluid and do not overfill the reservoir. When the level is correct, securely refit the cap.
Power steering fluid Automatic transmission fluid to Ford specification ESP-M2C 166-H

Screen washer fluid level*

14 * The underbonnet reservoir also serves the tailgate washer.
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.
Warning: On no account use engine coolant antifreeze in the screen washer system – this may damage the paintwork.
The screen/tailgate washer fluid reservoir filler neck is located in the centre of the engine compartment rear bulkhead, and the filler cap is brightly coloured. The screen washer level cannot easily be seen. Remove the filler cap, and look down the filler neck – if fluid is not visible, topping-up is required.
When topping-up the reservoir, add a screen wash additive in the quantities recommended on the bottle. It could also be time to replace the wiper blades. For details, click below
- Close + Open

Wiper blade replacement

Check the condition of the wiper blades; if they are cracked or show any signs of deterioration, or if the glass swept area is smeared, renew them. For maximum clarity of vision, wiper blades should be renewed annually, as a matter of course.
To remove a windscreen wiper blade, pull the arm fully away from the screen until it locks. Swivel the blade through 90°, then depress the locking clip at the base of the mounting block, and slide the blade out of the hooked end of the arm.
Don’t forget to check the tailgate wiper blade as well. To remove the tailgate wiper blade, pull the arm away from the window until it locks. Carefully prise the blade from the arm using the fingers only until it is released. Fit the new blade using a reversal of the removal procedure.
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