Hooking up Blue Steel with a late Christmas gift

It’s been a minute since I’ve written a little something, not sure why…maybe just being lazy. But today I have some updates for the Focus ST a.k.a. Blue Steel. Bought and installed a little something and did some exterior touch up/ enhancements. Back in December, after much research and debate, I ordered a set of Mountune lowering springs. The springs are supposedly designed to work great with the ST’s factory struts without being too low and ruining the struts prematurely. Dropping the ride height up to 1 inch up front and 1.4 out rear. Those numbers help to eliminate the unnecessary and unsightly wheel gap that the factory springs provide. The Mountune springs lower the cars center of gravity, tighten up the turn in, while sharpening the car’s already impressive handling. What’s in the box? I was excited to finally get notification that they shipped after almost 2 months of waiting. Funny thing is a cancelled the order when I found out they were backordered but after looking around and reading reviews I reordered them. Figured I wouldn’t have the time to install them until February anyway so the wait wouldn’t kill me. You know for me it’s like Christmas when car parts arrive at the house, but unlike my younger years I’m a little more apprehensive on doing installs. Just thinking about breaking something or just the soreness that comes from a day of labor under a car. Although I didn’t run into the garage to install them the same day they arrived, I have a friend who was pretty eager to get his hands dirty and help take the job. It was a rainy weekend and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to leave to even leave the house or even be in a garage, but I’m glad I did. My buddy Rahman helped me get the job done. The only hiccupa we had was not loosening the sway bar for the rear springs first. Would’ve made the job much easier and saved some time. Probably not necessary, but it did help. And not spreading the front knuckle wide enough. Being too gentle when it wasn’t necessary. That made for a workout. These tips I carry with me in the event another spring install comes my way.
Front strut removed
All in all it’s a simple install, but we took our time. Didn’t need any extra nuts and bolts after we were done. Plus it gave us some needed male bonding. Here is a pic from right after the install. I’ll get together with Rahman once we get some consecutive dry days to take some pics and compare my Mountune springs to his Ford Performance springs. From the little driving I’ve done, I’ve noticed a difference but I also want to hit some twisties soon. That’ll give me a chance to push the car and really test out the springs. And here is after a week of settling and a much needed wash. Looking pretty good. Along with lowering the car I also tinted the rear lower reflectors. Bought some inexpensive self adhering film from Amazon. Made a template. And wala! Just need to red out my 3rd brake light to finish off the look of the rear. Lastly I desperately needed to replace the crappy factory lug nuts. Mine were swelling making it difficult to use a standard tool to remove them. Apparently there is pending lawsuit about this as people have been unable to change there tire and have gotten stranded. Here are the new ones. I didn’t think that I wanted black but they do look good. Notice the swelling on the stock ones. Shame… Shame… Shame That about does it for this post. I will definitely follow up with a review of the springs and how the new lugs are holding up. Thanks for reading. Remember to like and follow us on Facebook and subscribe to our Perks Garage YouTube Channel and now on Instagram @perksgarageblog
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Ford Focus Recall has been issues

My wife sent me a text today with a screenshot that read “Ford has issued a recall for nearly 1.5 million Ford Focus vehicles.” An hour or so later I received a text from one of my buddies regarding this as well. Once I had the chance to look up the info I found that Ford is issuing a recall for 2012-18 Ford Focus vehicles equipped with 2.0-liter GDI & GTDI engines made in the U.S. Not all Focus vehicles are affected, so RS owners you are safe…at least from this recall. We all know they have had their fair share of recalls for the 2016 – 2017 model years.

The recall pertains to the canister purge valve (CPV) causing stalling and gas tank deformaty. Apparently the valve has been known to get stuck open on vehicles low on fuel. With the valve stuck in the open position, cars have been experiencing false fuel gauge readings, sputtering and stalling. In severe cases the gas deforms causing the tank to basically collapse on itself. All of this poses a great safety risk.

I have been plugged in to many Focus ST forums since purchasing my car and have read many posts of owners replacing their purge valves on their own due to finding a malfunction code during a troubleshooting scan. Apparently it is an inexpensive part and a simple fix, but without running a diagnosis and finding the error code you may not know if the valve needs replacing.

Ford says they will start sending out letters to owners around the 10th of December. In the meantime they advise all owners to keep their tanks above the half mark to prevent further incidents of stalling. During the recall owners will drop off their vehicle at their local dealership to be diagnosed. Each car will undergo new computer programming to help the purge valve operate correctly. The vehicles fuel system will also be checked and after the evaluation, any defective components will be replaced free of charge. The parts include: the purge valve, charcoal canister, fuel delivery module, and even the gas tank. For reference the recall number is 18S32.

Here are a few screenshots from my Ford Pass app regarding the recall.

Here’s to hoping that the recall goes smoother than the head gasket recall did for the RS. That was a nightmare for some owners.

Thanks for reading and be safe.

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Ford Focus RS

I saw this video and had to repost it.  Ford has just put the exclamation point on the hot-hatch and the entry-level sports car segment!  They wet our whistle with the tossable Fiesta ST and it’s almost 200hp and the Focus ST with its 252hp and its mixed reviews of being too tame and not as fun as it’s little brother.  So thank you Ford for finally delivering on your promise to bring America the Focus RS.

Ford is claiming at least 345hp and all-wheel drive matted to a 6-speed manual gearbox. These numbers trump both, the VW Golf R with it’s 296hp and the Rally-bred Subaru WRX STi delivering 305hp respectively (the Mitsubishi Evolution will no longer be in production by the end of this year). Neither of these are anything to sneeze at, and both tip the horsepower power per dollar scale very nicely.

More expensive sports cars fail to deliver the driving dynamic and smiles that these two cars deliver with their sub 40k price range.  I mean, why spend 60-100k when you can have the same if not more fun for 40k.  My eyes and ears are peeled for what a Ford will require for enthusiast to stake claim for their very own U.S. spec Focus RS. My guess is the high 30’s so as not to undercut the Mustang too much, although it is geared towards a different crowd.  #Hooniganism

Hmmm, I wonder what Mazda will deliver with the Speed3…stay tuned.
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Photo courtesy of Jalopnik.