I’m not crazy. I’m not crazy. This had been my mantra to the service center.
Click to image of that nutty lady rushing again into Ford. I fling open the door and shout out the name of any technician since I already know them all. “Jon, it’s doing it right now! I swear! Hurry, hurry!” or “Chris! Hurry, hurry before it stops!” I drag them out so they can witness me pouring water on the front tires or shove them in the front seat so they can drive it this minute, right now, even though I’m pretty sure when they touch it, it will run perfectly again.
2005 Ford Focus. 91,000 miles. Regular oil changes & maintenance. Last lrg maintenance pkg in Feb, everything flushed. No problems at all with this car until April 2011, (although that was the alternator & it was replaced.)
Regarding the mystery problem: in the last 8 weeks they have replaced the brake pads 4 times, rotors 2xs, calipers 2xs, the brake lines have been replaced once but that may increase by tomorrow and I have had 3 diagnostic tests on the transmission which yielded nothing & the master cylinder was checked and okay. (Tomorrow is another D-Day. I think they’re giving my car back again.)
Here’s what it’s doing still & getting worse
(Note: this doesn’t happen EVERY TIME you drive it, but it happens sometime EVERY DAY -throughout one full trip from here to there, distance doesn’t matter.)
Immediately on pulling out, I can tell if this is going to be a trip where it does this (by the feel of the brakes and how the accelerator is responding)
You can hardly push the brake pedal down, it will be so tight (the longer you drive it, the tighter it gets)
It loses power when accelerating and eventually will slow down instead of speed up
Accelerator will not respond and car will rev into another gear; it can stay there for as long as 5 minutes, getting louder and louder till you’re not sure if you’re going to explode or shift.
Or it will rev for 15 seconds, give up, go back to the quiet not-accelerating, then repeat this process over and over until you’ve reached your destination or pulled over because car just won’t accelerate any more.
Sometimes you can put your foot all the way to the floor on the accelerator and it will still slow down
It will slow and stop on it’s own w/o touching brake if you’re not accelerating
At light or stop sign, will crunch to a stop.
After light or stop sign, it crunches to a go.
I had someone ask me if I was sure I was in “Drive” when it happens. Although I had a lot of clever comebacks for this, I did double-check and yes I am.
‘Punching’ the brakes makes no difference
Backing up at least 20 feet does not make a difference.
Now it’s shaking again, when I go over 45mph. It will do this for several minutes and then just fade away. The shaking part is the only thing that goes away on it’s own in the course of one of these trips.
After it does this, you get to where you’re going & give it at least 15 minutes and/or pour water on the wheels, then it will start up again and work perfectly. The working perfectly part seems to happen every single time it touches the parking lot at the service center. All test drives are great; “it worked fine for me, are you sure you’re in Drive?”
P.S. I know this is Car Talk, so please forgive my non-car-speak. Mostly I make noises when I discuss this; words are actually progress.