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GTwannaB Reader
4/23/14 5:43 p.m.

Are those engine mounts stock Ford pieces or aftermarket? If aftermarket what brand?

Mitchell UltraDork
4/23/14 7:26 p.m.

They were aftermarket; looks like ScreaminE bought them from Rockauto. OEM mounts are outrageously expensive by comparison.

ScreaminE Reader
4/23/14 8:16 p.m.

DNJ for passenger mount (rock auto)

Anchor for drivers side mount (Vatozone)

Prothane Insert for dog bone lower mount (CFM Performance)

Mitchell UltraDork
4/24/14 12:29 a.m.

Something else that I would like to resolve is an AC compressor that chirps really loudly when switching on and off. It also introduces a lot of vibration when it turns on. Would the following compressor rebuild kit quiet it down? What else should I do to R&R the part? Could it be bearings that are shot?

The only time the.car has left me completely stranded was the last time the AC compressor went out, about 5 years ago. Seeing the resulting repair bill was one of the reasons I started doing my own work.


Mitchell UltraDork
4/25/14 10:18 a.m.

Well, one source of vibration is the radio face, which rattles at idle once the car has warmed up, and the AC is on. Must be some weird harmonics going on at that specific engine speed.

The radio is a bit of a dinosaur, so I ordered an aftermarket unit that can do HD radio and iPhone integration. I'm hoping to preserve the factory subwoofer and steering wheel controls; this will be my first foray into interior wiring.

GTwannaB Reader
4/26/14 12:46 p.m.

In reply to ScreaminE:

Thanks for the details on the parts.

Mitchell UltraDork
5/3/14 5:25 p.m.

This isn't performance oriented at all, but I installed a new head unit today. My old one has been operating intermittently, and honestly, I wanted HD radio and something that could access my iPhone's library.

My priority was to retain steering wheel controls and the factory subwoofer.

The stock head unit has three connectors to the back; one for power, one for the front and rear speakers, and the third for steering wheel controls and the subwoofer. There are off the shelf solutions for the former two, however the third doesn't seem to have a plug-and-play solution.

Since I was just going to trash the factory stereo, I ripped the female end of the plug from the board:

I then breathed a lot of soldering fumes. After a few hours, this is what I ended up with:

Everything worked as it should have on my first attempt. Considering that it is my first soldering job and first stereo install, I'm happy.

I'm now a huge fan of wiring shrink wrap.

Mitchell UltraDork
6/17/14 10:45 p.m.

Early last week, I used a 3M kit to refinish the front headlights. The quality of light is so much better now at night; it is whiter, brighter, and longer range. High beams are like spotlights again.

A few months before:


Later last week, I changed out the tires for a set of Continental Extremecontacts in 215/45ZR-17 from Tire Rack. $490 delivered, and $50 to mount at a local tire place, resulting in a final mounted price of $135/corner, which is pretty good as far as I am concerned. They seem to stop and handle just fine, and they are quiet.

Changed out the brake pads and rotors today, and bled the brakes for the first time in... I really don't know. This was my first time doing any brake work myself (I farmed it out last time), so everything took at least 3x longer than it should have. Front pads had maybe 0.5 mm of material remaining, so I guess I was right on time. I used Ford rotors, Hawk HPS Street pads front and back, and cheap-o O'Reilly DOT3 brake fluid.

The rear caliper pistons were a bit of a pain. On the first caliper I addressed, one of the slide pins was frozen in place. Of course, because this is the first brake caliper I ever disassembled, it took a bit of head scratching to find out why I couldn't get the caliper to clear the new pads and rotor. Once I realized that only one of the two pins moved freely, I used some precision hammering to extract the offending pin, which I lubricated along with all of the others.

The front pads and rotors were much more cooperative. A few weeks back, my neighbor gave me his old vise, which turned out to be the perfect tool for compressing the front caliper pistons:

Because I'm forever alone, I used the Harbor Freight vacuum pump bleeder to bleed the brakes. It seemed to work okay.

I haven't been able to give the brake upgrade much of a performance test yet, but the pedal feel is a lot firmer, and changing out the parts seemed to eliminate a jarring rattle that I have been chasing for months.

Mitchell UltraDork
11/8/14 9:45 p.m.

A few days back, a cooling system fitting decided to spring a crack and spray a nice stream of coolant onto the header heat shield, which resulted in some very pleasant odors. In the picture below, it is the molded pipe with three fittings.

I was able to change it out in te Oreilly parking lot the next day, so it wasn't a huge deal. I just had to plan my route carefully so that I made it to the store before the car began overheating.

Mitchell UltraDork
3/16/15 4:41 p.m.

Apologies for the redundancy, but I like to keep all of the details in one place.


Springs, struts, end links, and ball joints; runs like a dream compared to just yesterday. Debating whether to schedule an alignment.

Mitchell UltraDork
3/23/15 2:33 a.m.

Almost 1000 miles in so far. Runs spectacularly. Spent a few hours playing in the Malibu canyons today. Perfect weather, ocean, canyons, empty billiard table roads; paradise.

Since I rarely take pictures of the car:

nutherjrfan SuperDork
8/20/18 11:16 p.m.

Zombie thread revival.  I actually found this by simply googling does the svt focus use a different subframe.  I'm going to finally dig into the $1k '02 I bought at the impound auction two years ago.  So far only changed the oil filter and oil of course.  What was weird there was a thin rubber hose below it that goes east west for all of fifteen inches that came loose at one point.  I will be learning a lot especially as I'm sure there's rust on the subframe that I really don't like the look of.  I also found Toms 'while you're in there' thread.  That I had to bookmark as a google page. smiley

Time to start my own build thread and start a 'what engine support bar' thread.  So far I've seen a 700lb capacity one at WM for under $60.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
8/21/18 12:25 p.m.

Hey, it's Mitchell's SVT Focus, a former GRM cover car. 

egnorant SuperDork
8/21/18 12:29 p.m.

Sounds like you have discovered what I call the "Spa Day". Long term cars get this kind of care just because they are great cars! "While I am there" is a driving force on these vehicles too. I dropped a subframe to change my steering rack and WIAT caused me to change the bushings and ball joints along with 2 motor mounts (I upgraded to the GT sway bar too because that was the bushing that came with the kit). 8 months later I was back for the radiator, water pump, thermostat and heater core with new hoses...6 months later it was brakes, rotors and cylinders and soft hoses.


This was all after front bearings and axles at 180,000 miles. Clutch has been changed numerous times. Now at 435,000 miles it still feels tight but I can feel the rear struts need changing again.

Been doing a lot of these fixes on my latest buy, a 2001 Focus that I bought in Feb.


You really should add timing belt to the list as the SVT is an interference motor....and while you are there....do the water pump.

Bruce with an 1991 Escort and 2001 Focus ZX3.

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