Ford Focus recall over winter fire risk

* Salt on roads could cause fire * Up to 30,000 UK cars affected * Final letters being sent out...

Author Avatar
What Car? Staff
11 December 2009

Ford Focus recall over winter fire risk

Up to 30,000 Ford Focuses are being recalled over worries that a cold snap could cause their engines to catch fire.

Salt from gritted roads has been blamed, after Ford revealed it could damage the cars' cooling system, causing the engine to overheat and ignite.

Cars could catch fire
The problem follows a change in specification to the cooling fan, resulting in a risk of 'corrosion build up' triggered by winter gritting.

Ford has said the corrosion could damage the fan's electrics. A letter sent to owners says: 'In rare cases, the overheating may be sufficient to ignite the [fan's control] module and surrounding wiring and components.'

The problem was first identified in the summer, but many owners are only now receiving recall letters. The winter gritting season has also made it more urgent for owners to react.

The cars affected
The safety recall covers all Ford Focuses with 1.8 and 2.0-litre TDCi turbodiesel engines, which were manufactured between February 20, 2004 and May 31, 2006.

A Ford spokesman said the final batch of recall letters were now being sent out and all affected owners should be notified 'soon'.

Remedial action
Recalled vehicles will be made safe by the fitting of an additional wiring loom that removes the power to the fan control module when the ignition is switched off. A new water shield will be fitted to protect the module against water entry and corrosion build-up.

Contact your local Ford dealer if you're concerned that your vehicle might be at risk.