Spedo goes to zero

My 1999 Ford Focus 1.8 LX with 37K on the clock has suddenly developed a funny problem. When driving along suddenly the Speedo drops to zero, stays there for a few seconds and then returns to its original reading.
Can anyone give me a clue what is going wrong - and how much it might cost to rectify.
Location - North East England
Please reply to newsgroup - Thanks
Mike
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I had the same problem. The VSS (variable speed sensor, on the gear box I think) doesn't supply the ECU with the correct info which then passes it on to the instrument cluster control panel (Speedo). It's a known fault and I got mine fixed for nothing.
Cheers
Mike wrote:

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VEHICLE speed sensor.
And yes, ontop of the gearbox, bulkhead side and a pig to reach to get the roll pin out.
but yes, common fault. Check the multiplug first though.
Tim..
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Absolutely. Mine played up once about 6 months ago and I cleaned up the plug. It has been fine since then.
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Paul Giverin

British Jet Engine Website http://www.britjet.co.uk
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Hi Paul and Tim, Mine was playing up a couple of weeks ago (ie speedo went to zero and car cut out next time I dipped the clutch and took foot off accelerator. It started first time, I drove off and after 100 yards, speedo worked again and it has all been ok since. This also happened in March. Certainly looks like the VSS (vehicle speed sensor). How do you get the plug off, is it easy to do and how and what did you use to clean it? OR Would I be better leaving it alone? How much would it cost to have it replaced at a Ford dealer? Reluctant to get it replaced in case the problem is something else. Notice that one or two people appear to have had it done for free (seeing as it is a "known" problem?) after obtaining a job number from Ford Customer services. Mine is a 2000 V 1.8 Zetec - it it likely to be done free for a car of this age and how do I get in touch with the customer services? Cheers Justin
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Hi, mine is V 1.8 LX and I got it fixed for nothing even though it was well out of warranty. I had to get a ref number from them for my local Reg Vardy carriage. The Focus customer helpline is where I started sorry I don't have the number. Good luck
Cheers
Justin Case wrote:

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Thanks for all the replies.
I removed the VSS (vehicle speed sensor) plug assemby and spayed it with electrical contact lubricant and cleaner, then reassembled it. I also did the same with the multi-pin plug above near the gearbox that this wiring goes through. Touch wood, all seems to be OK now.
Mike
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