Ford Focus Estate Tyre Pressure Question

Hi there,
I have just bought a Ford Focus estate circa 2001
I am having a bit of a problem with it, it seems to snake a little when going round corners.
All 4 tyres are at 31-32 PSI
In the book it recommends
UNLOADED 32 PSI FRONT 32 PSI BACK
LOADED (3 or more people) 32PSI 46PSI (my tyres say max 44PSI)
My car is sometimes used by just me but also with 3+ people and luggage.
I dont really want to go to the Garage to change PSI every time i change loads.
Can anyone recommend what i should pump the tyres to ?
Has anyone experienced snaking issues in Focus.
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The recommended pressures. In the UK it is an offence to drive with incorrect tyre pressures. This is generally taken as within 10% of the makers stated pressures. If you have to compromise then it is arguably better to use the higher pressure when travelling light, rather than the other way round. This would reduce rear grip however.

Not me. I'm not really sure what you mean by "snaking issues". I've had my Focus 6 years, it sometimes gets driven harder than is entirely sensible but I have never had the rear let go.
Chris
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I also found this kind of odd. The recommended pressure exceeds the manufacturer's rating (on the OEM Sport Continentals). I tend to err on the high side (i.e. closer to the loaded rating). Better economy, and no problems with handling.

I've noticed the back of the Estate feels a little more "active" than the normal liftback. I put this down to more weight hanging further off the back. This tends to set up some oscillations in certain corners. It has never been more than an odd situation, however, and the Estate sticks to the road far beyond sensible speeds on the 205/50-16s.
Stephen
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thanks Steve and Chris,
One thing i forgot to say was that ive just got the car and been used to a Saxo before this, and the suspension on focus is very different (independant, saxo is not). I think its just a different drive.
When you say on the higher side would you say 38-40psi or higher for ears
cheers
Andrew

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Where do you get your information from?
The MOT test does not go into tyre pressures and I have never ever seen any legal issues regarding this.
Too soft maybe or at an extreme "too hard" may be a judgement made by the law but not "within 10%"
There is a 10% issue with regard to speed. Generally accepted by police forces throughout the UK is the 10% + 2mph for issuing a speed ticket.
That is 79mph on a motorway and you risk prosecution "on the spot 60" penalty + 3 points"
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Here:
s41A(b) Road Traffic Act 1988, Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986, reg 27, as amended

Where do you get *your* information from? :-)
Tyre underinflation is considered as part of the MOT test, although not in itself a reason for rejection. See here:
http://www.motuk.co.uk/manual_410.htm
BTW, I never mentioned MOT testing in my reply to the OP.

My value of +/- 10% was obtained from a friendly police traffic patrol driver. Although not established in law, he tells me it is the generally accepted level outside of which you may be prosecuted.
<snip OT speeding information>
HTH
Chris
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It would be of interest what the reg actually states. Is there a web site with these details?

I get my information from the mot manual. It does not test for correct PSI The MOT test does concern itself with vehicle regs and tyres are a vital part of the MOT test.

Yes - I accept that you did not mention, when questioned, something that you may etc. :-)

Hmm - how does he establish tyre pressure requirements. I have an estate car and the pressure requirements for a full or heavy load differ at the rear by 6PSI.(err - thats more than 10% of the normal recommended pressure) Does he carry a list of vehicles tyre pressures? Does he weigh the vehicle to establish what load is carried and at what axle? How does he calibrate his tyre pressure device?
All sorts of problems in law with what he states. Maybe the vehicle reg stated by you gives a full breakdown?
Don't doubt that they can push something like that, and check all the points mentioned, but I "guess" that it would be part of a list of faults that directly resulted in a bad car accident and they wanted to ensure that a proper conviction was obtained.
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sid wrote:

Incidentally, on conviction the penalty is the same as for other tyre defects. (Fine up to 2500UKP, 3 points, Disqualification).

"He" doesn't do any of these things, a VOSA examiner does, and would have all the information needed. In many police authority areas VOSA examiners now have the same right as the police to instruct a driver to stop in order for his vehicle to be examined. This avoids the cost of having a police officer available before roadside checks can be done.

Out of interest, I've just checked the Highway Code. Annex 1 states "Tyres *MUST* be correctly inflated..."etc.
Chris
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"> s41A(b) Road Traffic Act 1988, Road Vehicles (Construction and Use)

Its interesting that you are unable to quote other than from a " friendly police traffic patrol driver"
A search on google produced no more than a summary of faults that could potentially result in prosectution. No % figures etc.for tyre inflation. Perhaps you have a reference for any kind of figure?
Police officers certainly have a general overview of the law and are more expert than a lay person, but they certainly do not have extensive knowledge of every aspect.
That's why we now have a CPS who review evidence.
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You should never exceed the tire pressure which is stamped on the sidewall of the tire. I run 34 lbs all around on a Focus ZTS, No snaking problems. A snaking problem means there is something wrong with the suspension on the car.
Hi there,
I have just bought a Ford Focus estate circa 2001
I am having a bit of a problem with it, it seems to snake a little when going round corners.
All 4 tyres are at 31-32 PSI
In the book it recommends
UNLOADED 32 PSI FRONT 32 PSI BACK
LOADED (3 or more people) 32PSI 46PSI (my tyres say max 44PSI)
My car is sometimes used by just me but also with 3+ people and luggage.
I dont really want to go to the Garage to change PSI every time i change loads.
Can anyone recommend what i should pump the tyres to ?
Has anyone experienced snaking issues in Focus.
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Perhaps the previous owner replaced the tyres with incorrect spec tyres?
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wrote:

No, he's right. The OEM Continental Sport Contacts have a lower maximum pressure on the sidewall than Ford's recommendation.
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