I have a 2004 Ford Focus ST170. Some days I go to my car and it starts fine, but some days I put the key in and nothing happens. All the electrics fail like the battery is dead.

If I get out, close the door, put the key in the lock, turn it to lock then reopen it, it starts. I've taken the battery out and put it in another car and it started fine.

I've also put the other cars battery in my car and it starts fine. We drove to town in the morning. When we went to drive it 2 hrs later it wouldn't start. Then it was ok for few days then it did it again. Any ideas?

  • 2
    Do you normally lock and unlock the car with a remote or a key? When it hasn't started was the door left unlocked?
    – mikes
    Commented Jan 18, 2013 at 20:35
  • i lock and unlock with a remote but on the days the car is dead i can open with the remote then everything dead almost like me opening it with the remote kills it so close the door lock with key and reopen and all back to normal but the other day wouldnt even do that so thats why i checked the different batteries and all ok. always been locked when its done it as far as im aware. Commented Jan 19, 2013 at 12:07
  • Does the security light happen to flash or stay on? Sounds like possible issue with anti-theft system.
    – Gary
    Commented Jan 21, 2013 at 16:35
  • If possible, pop the hood, and look at the battery. Have a look at where the red and black wires connect to the battery. Is there any corrosion (white/blueish flaky substance) around the terminal ends? Check if you can determine any signs of acid leaking from the battery.
    – cinelli
    Commented Mar 22, 2013 at 15:15

1 Answer 1


I've had a smiliar problem wich was fixed by cleaning up the battery cables and making sure when putting them back on that they are secure and do not move, therfore giving them a good connection. I have had a similar problem with my alternator giving out, but usually when this is the problem you will also notice things while driving ( power surges in head lights, gauges go crazy, lights going on and off inside car, just stuff like that ).

I had another similar problem in my Ford Escape a while back and cleaned and tighted battery cables and didnt work took it to shop and they said my battey cables themselves were bad and needed replacing, after that worked like a charm. Also, the way to clean erosion off your battery cables, there are two ways to do: They make a tool for it you can buy at Autozone which would be best way, but if not, take a wire brush and Coca-Cola, pour it on them ( after you have removed them from battery ) and take your wire brush and scrub them down and take towel when done, wipe them off and they will shine like new.

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