really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 6
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
71,891 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.

2005 Ford Focus electrical problems

electrical problem

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2005 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 1 of 4)

problem #67

Mar 032015


  • miles


The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. While driving 25 mph, the door ajar warning light illuminated with no indication as to which door was affected. The contact mentioned that all doors were properly closed when the failure occurred. The failure occurred constantly. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, but the failure was unable to be determined. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was unknown.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #66

Mar 012015


  • 9,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. While driving various speeds, the vehicle pulled without warning. The contact was unable to open the front passenger and driver doors from outside the vehicle. The rear passenger door failed to open. The rear driver side door handle was slightly detached. The electrical warning light was illuminated. A certified mechanic stated that the tie rods and wheel well needed to be replaced, and the rack and pinion tightened. The tie rod and wheel well were replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 9,000.

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #65

Nov 032015


  • 150,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. While stopped at an intersection, the vehicle shut off and lost all power without warning. The contact heard a clicking noise from the steering rack. The contact called roadside assistance; however, the vehicle restarted after the tow truck driver shook the battery a couple of times. The contact drove home. The failure recurred a few days later and the vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who was unable to diagnose the failure. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that there was a recall for NHTSA campaign number: 05V030000 (latches/locks/linkages). The manufacturer stated that there was no recall for the failure and referred the contact to NHTSA to file a complaint. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 150,000. Updated 04/22/16

- Vero Beach, FL, USA

problem #64

Mar 262015


  • 117,000 miles


The Ford zxw wagon's liftgate wiring harness had frayed inside the rubber housing at the junction where the gate pivots between the car body and liftgate. The wires shorted which caused the electric gate release to open at 70mph, while driving straight on a freeway. The liftgate rose up, opening the back of the cargo area to traffic. Luckily freeway speed winds kept it from completely opening, but when slowed to 30mph it went straight up. I'm lucky I had no children or animals in the back cargo area. And the fellow drivers on the road were lucky nothing shifted and fell out. The liftgate refused to latch after this point, making driving the car safely impossible. In researching the cause and repair, I noticed several forums where an identical problem with Ford's design was posted. The replacement bill at a Ford dealership was around $1,200, not including my time lost to research, repair, or finding alternative means of transportation for my business purposes. This is dangerous, potentially life threatening, and unfortunately, not fixed. The mechanics at Ford said the replacement part is the same as what was original. This will likely happen again.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #63

May 272015


  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the ignition key was locked within the ignition switch. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 100,000.

- Philadelphia , PA, USA

problem #62

Mar 162010


  • 7,500 miles
Both the front and back drivers side doors can be locked either electronically with the remote or manually by hand. The front drivers side door handle wont operate from the outside. It has been fixed twice already and now broken for a third time. This seems to be a widespread problems with the 02-08 Focus. A little googling will show just how often this happens.

- East Islip , NY, USA

problem #61

Sep 102014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 149,000 miles


Was driving on the highway and broke down. Car towed to garage and alternator replaced along with the battery. The car ran fine for about 1 week where after turning the car off it wouldn't start again. Again had it towed to the garage and the battery needed to be changed. A week later the car did it again and again the battery was replaced. I took the card to my Ford dealership and had an electrical check done and the electrical test came back that the battery that was just put it was low and the alternator had tested fine. Changed the battery again..yup you guessed it...it died again. Changed the battery again and the car has now been running for 2 weeks now. Called Ford's home office and filed a complaint not that it will do anything.

- Chepachet, RI, USA

problem #60

Oct 032014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 76,046 miles
Car started normally. Dashboard lights came on as usual. Lights went out in sequence as usual. Normal driving started with no abnormal dashboard display. Moments later all dashboard light started flashing off and on eratically. There was no effect on driving that could be discerned. All the car handling features seemed normal. As driving continued some or all of the dash lights would come on and off eratically. The only light that stayed on when the rest went out was the engine symbol light. The fuel gauge also indicated no-fuel eratically.

- Saint James, NY, USA

problem #59

Aug 042014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 180,000 miles
I've had this 05 Ford Focus for less than a year and had several problems, all resolved but this one. I was taking my 4 year old and autistic 13 year old step children to the park last Monday and my car started going haywire. It would lose and gain power in intervals and all of the dash cluster stopped working. The car lost power and died on the side of the road with no cars in sight. Ended up having to walk almost 3 miles with them before we finally saw someone nice enough to give us a ride. Since then the car has drained and ruined 3 batteries and two alternators. My dash lights are now staying on with no key in the ignition and batteries keep getting drained. There's also a chirp I'm assuming something to do with the security system or the wiring harness on the alternator or dash. I have not been able to get the car out of park for 6 days and it is/was my only mode of transportation for these two children. I'm finding it very difficult to get things done with such an unreliable car. This problem is still not resolved.

- Cannelton, IN, USA

problem #58

Jun 062011

Focus 4-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
So idk every [xxx] year! for the last few years! it goes good then she starts acting funny boom battery light comes on. I use the voltmeter and everything's fine full charge same with the alternator. A week or so passed then the starter went out replaced 7/3/13!! wtf! fried put a new one in. Now my[xxx] clutch feels different don't know what it's not slipping but it's really smooth.2 days go by and boom acts like the battery is dead..nope take key out get voltmeter it's at 12.5 so I try again seems ok doesn't turn over. Again turn key all lights on seems ok nothing.... ok 1 more turn key struggles like starter then lights flicker dash wacks out boom dead nothing!!!!! get out still 12.5volts. I don't know try 1 more time I pumped the clutch ad it hesitated to turn over and boom it works!!!! get home. Turn it off all is well acts like nothing is wrong! 4 to 6 days again this time it did it 2 him just different.here's the kicker!!!!! it's fine fully charged all lights ok all volts ok he pulls out ( ha ha pulls out!) then she idles irregularly like a loop higher loop get it home and keeps looping. So I remember this from like 5 yrs ago it was something with the maf or ecg I believe so I look for answers.... now he goes out 4 hrs later nothing dead won't turn over won't do nothing!!!!! I hate this car!!!!! I swear I will find the [xxx] problem to this [xxx]!!!!! I can't believe this [xxx] car! she was so good now she's a lil [xxx]! I know it's something stupid as [xxx] and watch just like last year in August the [xxx[ clutch is going to go out again! I loved this car but from reading constantly I've decided this is a serious Ford issue!!!! I have spent thousands on this! if I didn't have lifetime warranties on the alternator etc I could only imagine the cost!! through all this horror I've also had to replace O2 sensors maf sensor all engine mounts 3 times!!! information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #57

Jun 152014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 78,000 miles


Turn signal stopped working. Removed rear tail lenses to replace all the bulb and found brake/turn signal socket fused to interior portion of tail lens inhibiting removal due to heat warpage. Will contact dealer for replacement sockets for right and left sides and lens replacement for right and left sides. This should be a recalled item due to hazard of no turn or brake light and poor design to allow bulb to produce enough heat to cause thermal reaction and possible fire hazard.

- Kettering, OH, USA

problem #56

Jun 062014


  • 135,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the instrument panel, overhead dome light, rear windshield wiper, and rear exterior lights failed without warning. The dealer and manufacturer were notified, but the vehicle had not been diagnosed or repaired. The failure mileage was 135,000.

- Etna , CA, USA

problem #55

Mar 172014


  • 140,000 miles
The back door drivers side will not lock. The drivers door will not open from the outside. I replaced the door handle but it will still not work. It does not seem to be touching opening mechanism.

- Portland, TX, USA

problem #54

May 162014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 81,905 miles
This is the third time I had to place front left and right head lamps and high beams. I brought this car off of enterprize dealer in Nevada. Over the years I began haven lots of problems with this car. So much needed to be done on this car and I spent lots of money too. Not knowing until now this car has some recall issues. Passenger rear door replace and broken again. The rear brake are rusted and needs to be replace, drums pads ext.. noise in the steering wheel when I turn the car.

- North Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #53

Nov 272013


  • 138,000 miles
Referring to case # [xxx]. upon further inspection it was determined that the root cause of the short was in fact the small bundle of wires going into the liftgate. Repairs have been made to all affected wires. Including installation of a brand new headlight switch Ford certified. Cost of repairs 2347 dollars and 97 cents.upon reading other complaints on this website I've seen at least 40 other cases caused by the same bundle of wires. This is very dangerous and as you can see could potentially cause a vehicle to burst into flames while driving. Something's gotta be done. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Lykens, PA, USA

problem #52

Nov 272013


  • 138,000 miles
Driving on route 209 approximately 40 miles an hour. I noticed white smoke coming through the dash. Immediately pulled the car over, put the car in park, removed the key, and got out of the car. With no key in the ignition the starter began turning over. I didn't have any tools to unhook the battery. The starter turned over for about a minute, then the windshield wipers, headlights, and horn all began activating. I immediately called my mechanic for emergency roadside assistance. After about 4 minutes of the wipers head lights and horn all activating with no key in the ignition, someone stopped and had some tools unhook the battery.mechanic showed up about five minutes later, had the car towed to his shop, and began searching for the problem. After removing the dash panels he says that the headlight switch cost a shortwhich melted all the wires togetherunder the dash and going back to the tail lights.he says it is due to the small wires that Ford uses and they're harnesses and the way they twist them together so they will fit into the small plastic tube under the dash. I haven't been able to find a recall to attach this problem too. However I really think Ford should be responsible for these damages. I'm considering this car a total loss.

- Lykens, PA, USA

problem #51

Dec 062013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 56,000 miles
The left rear turn signal stopped working- the blown bulb indication was noticed by the fast flash signal on the dashboard indicator. When going to replace the bulb it was found that the upper socket for the turn signal socket is melted to the lens cover. The lens cover socket mounting hole was distorted by heat. Once the socket was removed the bulb was found not to be blown. The socket housing shows internal signs of heat damage -color change. The bulb was in position in the socket and the bulb base showed no sign of melting at the bulb contact points. It appears the heat was generated in the socket connection to the bulb base. There are multiple complaint of a similar finding on multiple years of the Ford Focus that were easily found with a internet search- Ford Focus melted socket. Purchasing replacement socket from dealer as this is a major personal safety issue.

- Savage , MN, USA

problem #50

Oct 062013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 89,500 miles
Since we received the car, we have noticed inconsistent acceleration and deceleration - both in town and on the highway. This particular incident was a simple slowing down for a stop light. I pressed on the brake gently to start coming to a full stop behind a few cars. As my car tried to slow down, I noticed it was fighting to slow down. I pressed on the break harder, but it wasn't going to be enough to stop without hitting the car in front of me. I tapped the accelerator, then back on the break, no change. Not knowing what else to do, I put the car into neutral. The engine did not stop revving up so I turned the car off. After waiting a minute, I turned the car back on and operated fine for the remainder of the day.

- Ellendale, ND, USA

problem #49

May 102013

Focus 4-cyl

  • miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the wiring harness failed on the rear hatch of the vehicle. The brake lights stopped working and it caused the gear shift to become stuck. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who determined that the design of the wiring harness was too short and when it was stretched the wires caused the failure to occur. The failure mileage was unknown. The current mileage was 110,000.

- Summit Hill , PA, USA

problem #48

May 282013

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 176,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that while driving approximately 30 mph with the headlights in operation, the headlights and instrument panel lights became extremely dim. The engine was turned off and the vehicle failed to restart. A certified mechanic inspected the vehicle and replaced the alternator. The failure was contributed to a faulty liftgate wiring harness. The manufacturer was notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 176,000. Updated 08/15/13

- Quincy, MI, USA

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