hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
50,657 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2004 Ford Focus miscellaneous problems

miscellaneous problem

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2004 Ford Focus Owner Comments

problem #7

Jun 132016


  • miles


While leaving work, I attempted to start my vehicle, however, when I put the key into the ignition, the key would not turn. The steering wheel was locked up, and I could not get the vehicle to start. I looked online and apparently this is a common issue. I am a police officer in my uniform and it is very unnerving to be stranded like that.

- Huntersville, NC, USA

problem #6

May 012015


  • 88,000 miles
My wife has been driving the Focus station wagon since 2004. All of a sudden, the 'clicker' did not allow us to close the driver's side rear passenger door lock; we found this out when the clicker did not sound the 'beep' we are used to. We tried to manually lock the door, but that was also ineffective. The only solution was a repair by our local service station for approximately $500. There were two separate issues. The primary issue, of course, was the safety of the rear seat passenger. The second issue was the ongoing problem of entry to the auto when unattended.

- Plainview, NY, USA

problem #5

Apr 162012

Focus 4-cyl

  • 85,000 miles
The key will not turn in the ignition. This has been ongoing for two months. It takes several minutes of jiggling to finally get the ignition lock to release. I drive this car on business, including in remote areas. It is scary to try to start the car and have the key not turn. So far, I've always been able to get it to eventually work, but this is ridiculous. We've just started experiencing the same issue on my wife's 2007 Ford Focus. In researching this, it has been a problem on the Focus since the beginning and apparently Ford has refused to acknowledge the issue or change the ignition lock mechanisms on later Focus models. Potentially getting stranded at night or in a remote area due to a faulty ignition lock is a serious safety issue. One should never have a problem in turning the key in the ignition. For what it is worth, I am a career safety and risk management consultant working in the commercial insurance industry with 35 years experience.

- Murray, KY, USA

problem #4

Jun 292011


  • 89,600 miles


Ignition is totally frozen up. No advanced warning of imminent failure. Stranded. Was able to get a ride. Ignition is totally stuck will not turn at all. Not an electrical problem, but a mechanical failure of the ignition/key mechanism in the steering column. Key will not turn at all. Huge safety concern as this could happen anywhere, anytime.

- Oberlin, OH, USA

problem #3

Sep 282004


  • 77,000 miles
There were no events leading up to the failure of my ignition freezing up. I was running errands and after my last stop I got into the car and the key wouldn't turn in the ignition. I had several people try, including a aaa tow-truck worker. He said he sees this problem a lot in the Ford Focus, the ignition cylinder prematurely wears out and has to be replaced. The car had to be towed to the Ford dealership and is waiting for repair on Monday. To my surprise, I came and checked the internet about the problem and there is thousands of the same complaint. All are Ford Focus owners. All put a key in the ignition and the key won't turn. I find this strange that this car has the exact same problem and the customer has to pay hundreds of dollars to replace the ignition cylinder, which is obviously defected. This could be a safety concern for any Ford Focus owner. There is forewarning before the ignition freezes up, it just happens once the car is turned off. My car was only turned off for 10 minutes and it happened to me.

- Vacaville, CA, USA

problem #2

Aug 012004

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,000 miles
Bought a brand new car with 07 miles on it. At 9,000 miles, only three months after the vehicle was purchased it began to have major problems. Repeatedly returned vehicle to the dealership where it was purchased, but was greeted with refusal to fix the vehicle and poor customer service issues. Was given faulty/defective replacement vehicles as part of warranty when car was not drivable and undergoing repairs. Ford refused to fix vehicle at one point, and new dealership was involved. New dealership verified problems occuring, but were unable to diagnose and/or fix vehicle. Refuasal upon Ford Motor Company to buy back and/or replace the vehicle with a new vehicle. Eighteen months later, filing a lawsuit against Ford Motor Company with the Texas lemon law at my own expense in order to find resolution to the problem.

- Nacogdoches, TX, USA

problem #1

Jul 152005

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 6,000 miles
Brake problem. At about 2000 to 3000 miles breaks starts to squeal and grind. Took it in to service at dealer complaining about problem, as it got worse and was not normal in 6,000 miles. Was told no problem, routine break in. Then at 12,000 miles still a problem. Went to another dealer, said the same thing. Now with nearly 18,000 miles, rotors are grooved very bad. Evidence and warning was evident in the earlier miles as well. Ford has done nothing to help. I feel they owe me a new pair of rotors and pads. Also, complained of clutch noise problem. I have heard of a tsb claiming certain 2004 Focus have a transaxle misalignment causing pre-mature clutch wear and noise. Wiper switch has been replaced by rc lacy Ford, better service, but they won't service me anymore, since I did not buy it there, and ravena is so close. I need to contact crossroads about all future warranty issues and complaints. Doors in the rear also stick, and wear of door striker is evident. Tires have also been worn pretty bad pirelli 195/60 R15. Back pair are totally bald, and only have had like 18,000 miles, I think it was a alignment issue, which for a car 17 months old should not be an issue. I noticed wear at around 13,000 miles. During my second tire rotation. Have had too many problems with this new vehicle. Also issues with extreme chipping around the rear wheel well. Also have had a hesitation problem at about 25 mph. #rd gear used to be difficult to engage. Please help me resolve these issues. I got nowhere with the dealers myself. The VIN is not the appropriate VIN. My car is a 2004 ZX5 duratec 2.3E 5 spd. Almost all options included. Thank you.

- Athens, NY, USA

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