Kelso
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 5:24 am

Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:44 am

I purchased my 2012 Ford Focus Electric used, about a year and a half ago. GREAT little car, when it's working. Four or five times now, I've had it plugged in, only to try to go to work the next day and it's completely dead. Something is draining my battery; can it be the Clipper Creek charging unit? I've had the 12v battery problem many people have had and I've had that replaced already.

I have no idea what to do about this. Questions, insight, anything is helpful at this point!

jmueller065
Posts: 2398
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2013 4:36 am
Location: Southeastern MI
Contact: Website

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:02 am

Which battery? The HVB or the 12V battery?
2018 Cajun Red Chevy Bolt
2016 Magnetic C-Max Energi (lease returned)
2014 Sunset Escape
2014 Thor Axis (V-10)
2013 Focus Electric (lease returned Jan 2016 for the C-Max above)
https://spareelectrons.wordpress.com/

Kelso
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 5:24 am

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:15 am

I have no idea at this point.

triangles
Posts: 1107
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:40 am
Location: Toledo, Ohio

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:56 am

If by, "completely dead" you mean that you had to use the physical key to open the door and the dash was dark, that is your 12V. Everything in the car except the AC, traction motor, and heater operate off the 12V system.

I recently had my 12V issue solved after 5 months. What is happening is something isn't shutting off when you turn the car off. The reason it is so hard to diagnose is there is no logging of what modules do and do not shut off when you turn the car off so they have to catch it in the act of draining the battery in order to fix it. If it's intermittent then that is nearly impossible. Mine was only fixed because it eventually got to the point where it would drain the battery almost every time the car was shut off. In my car the RFA (Remote Function Actuator) and the telematics unit (wireless modem) were drawing excess current when shut off and had to be replaced. I believe the RFA is the module that interacts with the key fobs. I'm not sure what all it does maybe someone more knowledgeable can elaborate.

If you're handy with a multimeter you can do some diagnostics yourself. Shut the car off and unhook one of the 12V battery cables. Then reconnect it thru a multimeter configured to measure current. Before testing mine I used a clamp on DC ammeter to see the current when I shut it off. It was just under 4A and quickly dropped. This clamp on meter is useless below 1A necessitating me putting a multimeter in series with the battery. Most multimeters are rated for 10A so this shouldn't be a problem. However if you turn the car on and the battery is low it can easily jump to near 50A! So DO NOT turn the car on with the multimeter in series with the battery unless you want to potentially smoke your meter. I know this from experience! :lol: In talking to my dealer I learned the ford procedure is to wait 40 minutes after the car is shut off and the current draw on the battery should be less than 50mA. Mine was 20mA. If the current draw is over 50mA the procedure involves pulling fuses until you find the culprit. The thing that makes this difficult is disconnecting the 12V battery, opening a door, hitting a key fob button, or anything that "wakes the car up" resets the need to wait 40 minutes to see the battery current drain.

I have read of other people having the telematics unit be the culprit. If you don't care about using myford mobile you could pull the F1 fuse in the back to disable the telematics unit and see if that solves the problem. I'm assuming on a 2012 that isn't covered under warranty anymore so it probably wouldn't be worth fixing. Besides I thought they were going to charge for MFM after 5 years anyway. By the way if your manual isn't handy http://www.autogenius.info/ford-focus-e ... a-version/ this page will show you where on the rear fuse block F1 fuse is (bottom 5A fuse toward front of vehicle). Yesterday I pulled this fuse because I noticed my telematics unit stopped responding a week earlier.

Another less likely possibility is your EVSE is faulty.
2014 Blue Candy FFE
http://www.fuelly.com/car/ford/focus/2014/triangles/303811 (since this forum doesn't allow BBcode in sigs)

Kelso
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 5:24 am

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:42 am

Even if something is draining the 12v, wouldn't it charge back up sooner or later upon being plugged in?

campfamily
Posts: 450
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2015 8:07 am
Location: Southern California

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:47 am

You say you've "had the 12v battery problem many people have had and I've had that replaced already"....how long ago was that? Even if recent, your 12V battery could have gone bad again. As triangles notes, if you car is completely dead and you have to open it with the metal key, the culprit is almost certainly the 12V battery. And, 12V batteries go bad. So, if I were you, I'd have that battery tested to make sure it is still good before trying to diagnose something else that might not even be there.

I've been in Engineering for nearly 30 years, and if I learned anything, it is that the solution to a problem, particularly an electrical problem, is almost always the simplest one. So, start simple and work up from there.

My 2cents worth.....

Keith
GONE - 2015 FFE, Magnetic with leather interior, debadged & tinted
38,500 miles (since May 2015), average 246 Wh/mile

REPLACED WITH - 2018 Tesla Model3, LR RWD, Obsidian Black
20,000 miles (since Nov 2018), average 235 Wh/mile

davideos
Posts: 409
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:58 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 9:19 am

Replace the 12v battery. See if you can find out how old the battery is. You should be able to find a month/year sticker on it somewhere. If it is the Ford battery, there should also be a clear window on the top. Green means good and black means bad. Since there is no starter motor on the electric focus, the battery can get really bad before you ever notice symptoms. My battery had about 4Ah capacity left when it died....if it were a regular focus, it would have died long before.

So if you battery is 3 years old or more, most definitely, a new one is a likely solution. Some automotive stores have the ability to test your battery, but good luck finding a non-Ford battery. It is an oddball size. Interstate makes them, but I could only order one from them...no one had it in stock.

triangles
Posts: 1107
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2011 11:40 am
Location: Toledo, Ohio

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 4:41 pm

Edit: 10/11/17 corrected 100A DC-DC max current and 96R battery fitting, 67R is OE.
Kelso wrote:Even if something is draining the 12v, wouldn't it charge back up sooner or later upon being plugged in?
It sounds like your 12V battery was simply replaced and the reason for it being prematurely dead was not fixed. If anything I would think the battery on FFE should last longer than on an ICE car since it doesn't have the high current loads of a starter. The last two batteries in my ICE cars lasted almost a decade. I could see where a strong new battery would appear to fix the problem until it was weakened by the constant drain over time.

To answer your question, on the FFE the DC-DC converter does the same thing as an alternator on an ICE car, provide power to the 12V system and charge the 12V battery. When the car is turned on the DC-DC converter is capable of providing 100A to the 12V system. The DC-DC converter is also on but in a low power mode while it is plugged in AND charging the HVB. I am assuming this is to provide power for coolant pumps etc and top off the battery. When the charge cycle is complete everything shuts down again including the DC-DC converter. If a defective module is still not shutting down at this point, it will continue to drain the battery until you start the car again or the battery dies and can provide no more juice.

Also FYI I don't remember where I saw it but I remember seeing a picture of a 96R size battery in an FFE. Apparently it fits the battery tray barely.

davideos. My brand new ford 12V battery shows nothing but black in the window. So unless the new ford battery is somehow defective with the battery window being black and still magically testing at 500 cranking amps, I don't think the green in the window is always something to go by.
Last edited by triangles on Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
2014 Blue Candy FFE
http://www.fuelly.com/car/ford/focus/2014/triangles/303811 (since this forum doesn't allow BBcode in sigs)

EVA
Posts: 874
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2013 9:10 pm
Location: Chicago Area

Re: Completely at a loss

Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:34 pm

Kelso wrote:Even if something is draining the 12v, wouldn't it charge back up sooner or later upon being plugged in?
Triangles got you the correct about how the 12V charging system works.

The other part of the answer, is if your 12V battery is abused, it won't hold charge. So no it won't sooner or later charge an abused battery.

As everybody has said, replace the battery. I just checked, figured the battery wouldn't be too expensive. It is a strange battery, and is around $125. If that wasn't the problem, buy it from someplace that will take a return.
2014 Platinum White FFE (Turning in mid Dec. 2016 25,000 miles)
2013 Ingot Silver FFE
2012 Titanium ICE Focus
2014 Tesla Model S 85

davideos
Posts: 409
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:58 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Completely at a loss

Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:49 am

I wouldn't go by the little window alone. Mine was green when I bought it. Getting it tested would be the best. Like I said, mine had 4Ah of capacity left...about 1/10th or less than it should be...meaning, although I could charge it up past 12.5V, there wasn't enough capacity to keep it there very long.

Lead Acid batteries seem to only last 3 years for me. I've had some last 5 years, but not recently. Time alone will kill a 12V battery. Temperature will do it too. There are other factors I'm sure, but there is an awful good reason a battery warranty is typically only 36mo. And when I talked to my Ford service adviser about it, she said to *save the receipt* because I'll need it.

It could also be a rogue device sucking energy or even the behavior of the car doing the battery in early. But, if your battery is 3 years old and you don't have the equipment to check for other problems, you have a pretty good idea who the culprit is. I had delayed getting a new battery because I thought a bad battery wouldn't charge up to 12.5 V and hold it there. But in the end, I got a new battery and haven't had a problem with it since....but I'm saving the receipt!

Note, if you want to get warranty service on a Ford battery, Ford wants to test the battery with the car, so don't just pull the battery and show up with a receipt in hand. We'll see...in 35mo or less.

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