Ford Focus - heated windscreen and no footrest

I'm considering buying an 02-04 year 1.6 Focus Ghia.
1. Anyone experienced any faults with the heated windscreen? 2. I believe Focuses do not have a footrest - can one be fitted as an
extra? If not then I guess its easy to velcro on a wooden block!
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The heated windscreen is not a known problem, though after a while and lots of use some of the wires do break and you can get a thin line of ice up the screen over a broken wire. Time to call in the windscreen insurance and a hammer.... ;-)
The front screen does take alot of power to run -upwards of 50amps- despite it only being on for 3 mins, add to that blower and rear window and you're easily at 100amps total demand.
The ECU does have control to shut down the heated screens if battery voltage drops too low but, I have heard of some cars with alternator failures and/or knackered batteries on cars which do only a very short town mileage to and from work with all electrical accessories on.
Foci do not have a clutch foot footrest, and i cant say i've ever noticed the lack there-of, but I guess if you are tall or long in the leg it might be nice. That said I also drive a Volvo which does have a rest and often find my foot on the rest.
My recommendation would be to buy the newest, cleanest and properly looked-after 5door Focus you can find, rather than one with the least miles, in the colour of your choice (mid metallics are best-avoid the really light metallics like Vitro etc) and dont be afriad to haggle like hell.
You can have a new one for less than 10k and you can bet as the new Focus comes on stream current shape ones will depreciate heavily, so dont pay too much to begin with.
Oh and get used to the arrogant tossers they call Ford dealers.
Tim..
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Calling them arrogant tossers may be valuing them too highly.
If the Ford dealers in Essex (UK) are the 'norm'.....
Don't believe 90 percent of what the salesman says. That free cup of coffee in the sales office could cost you thousands.
I wonder which of these statements is true?
The car prices listed in consumer guides are a work of fiction, you would never be able to find a car at those prices.
We can get you better deal on finance
Because our broker specialises on Ford motors we can get you a cheaper insurance quote.
All our second hand cars get a full service before you take delivery.
Every three months after buying a car you get a phone call saying "please come in for a coffee and a chat so we can see if you are still satisfied with your purchase" I suspect that sales figures are falling and previous customers gave their phone numbers to the sales team.
The advantages buying from a Ford dealer may be that they have a larger choice of low mileage second hand cars from which to choose. However you must remember that the salesman is _NOT_ your friend and the extras that they try and sell are always overpriced.
--
Alan
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There's not a single wire broken in my 1999 Focus heated windscreen. Perhaps just luck...

That's the only real problem with it, while no problem on some highway, revs are high enough even if you drive slow to deliver the electric energy. During stop and go, you'll better turn it off. Voltage drops below 12V and headlights get murky.;(
[..]
--
Michael Heiming (X-PGP-Sig > GPG-Key ID: EDD27B94)
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On Fri, 28 Jan 2005 21:18:57 +0000 (UTC), " Tim \(Remove NOSPAM."

Away back in late 2000 I had a small chip / 5mm horizontal crack near the bottom of the windscreen which had been there for a few months. One very cold morning I used the heated windscreen as normal. The ice cleared and a few miles down the road I needed to wash the windscreen. The heated washer jets allowed the water to flow onto the screen. Unfortunately the icy cold water on the recently heated screen caused the small chip / 5mm crack to turn into one major crack across the length of the screen.
The windscreen on my May 2000 1.8 Zetec was replaced by Autoglass with another heated windscreen.
Each winter thereafter more and more of the elements have started to fail on my windscreen. Currently about 30% of the elements don't work. Thankfully they're mostly on the passenger side. The ones that have failed are always grouped in bands with others - I don't have any isolated failures.
How does the power get to all these elements. Is there some sort of conductive strip at the top or bottom of the screen that could have worked loose on my screen?
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For me the contour and location of the wheelwell is fine for my left foot. I don't notice the lack of a footrest, compared to my two previous cars which had one.
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Thanks for the replies. I'm going for a Focus mainly cos of the heated windscreen. (i was considering Civic and Corolla instead). Comments?
I would imagine that I'd mainly use the heated windscreen when theres ice, which is only a few days a year, also i'd only need to switch it on for a few minutes at a time. For general demisting during driving the normal heater should do the trick like any other car. (?)
Yes I'm going for a fairly new car, so hopefully there shouldnt be problems with the screen, warranty will cover it if so. I'm considering dealers (have already heard stories about dealers!), but private garages too.
Also...
anyone know if its easy to add on a drivers armrest? i'm considering a Ghia as i like the luxury of armrest, but dont think its worth the extra price, also there very few available. So i may go for an LX or Zetec and try add it on. just that it may affect my insurance..if i declare it that is...
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I use the heated screen almost every day in the winter. Being able to drive away after 10 seconds instead of peering through a little porthole in the mist is great. Once you start using it, you use it more than you thought you would. The windscreen itself is not much more expensive than a normal, non-heated screen, and with the wires embedded in the glass, I would imagine the failure rate to be lower than the rear window. I used the rear window heater every day for extended periods of time in all my cars and only experienced a failure when I actually scratched the wire.
The armrest in the American Focus I drove was a pain in the ass. When it's up it blocks shifting, and when it's down it is in an awkard position. If the UK part is the same, I wouldn't bother.
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In UK models it's on a timer which automatically switches the heated front screen off after a few minutes.

Go for AirCon. Turning on the AC removes moisture faster. (It is automatically turned on if the controls are selected to blow air at the front screen) windscreen)

I have a 2001 focus with a heated front screen - so far only one of the wires has failed. It's an insignificant problem.
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