CAT’s Inside Line: Comma


Screen shot 2013-03-19 at 09.58.33Comma’s Mike Bewsey points out these technical points for the Focus

1.      Engine Oil

For this particularly series of Focus, Ford list only one or two specifications for engine oil which should be covered by Comma Xtech 5W30. Later versions fitted with the Ecoboost engine may have a different recommendation and there may be some cross over at the tail end of the 2004-2011 model series so always use Comma’s application guide available at to make sure you get the right product for the vehicle you are servicing.

Some of the engines in this series of Focus have quite small sumps – the 1.6 diesel for example has a 3.8L sump with a further 0.4L held in the filter. Supplying the customer with a top up pack and reminding them that they should be checking the engine oil regular (see handbook for guidance) might also be prudent here particularly if you have noticed that the oil needed topping up when it was brought in. A quick check before you change might be a good way of reinforcing the importance of top up to the customer. Combined with longer service intervals and the increased use of sensitive components like turbochargers, a smaller sump size makes checking your oil more critical than ever before.

2.      Brake Fluid

Ford use one of two specifications for brake fluid for this series of Focus and again you can rely on Comma’s online application guide available at to identify which product is suitable for the vehicle you are servicing.

Most people don’t think of brake fluid as a service item however, as with many manufacturer’s, Ford specify a change interval of 24months for this series of Focus. Brake fluid degrades over time by absorbing water from the atmosphere (even when it is apparently sealed inside the system) which lowers its boiling point. Boiling point is a critical factor in brake fluid performance because of the amount of heat generated during braking. If the boiling point of the fluid is too low then continuous or hard braking may cause the brake fluid to vapourise which in turn can result in a loss of hydraulic pressure within the system (ie your brakes don’t work when you most need them too). The message here is that brake fluid is a safety critical item so check and change when specified – don’t assume that it will just be OK.

3.      Power Steering Fluid

For this series of Ford Focus there should just be a single specification for power steering fluid which is covered by Comma CHF11S. Earlier models did however require a different product and again there might be some cross over at the beginning of the 2004-2011 model series so always use Comma’s application guide available at just to be on the safe side.

4.      Coolant

Ford use an OAT based coolant for all of their vehicles produced from 1998 onwards. Coolant colour is typically orange but from our range we would recommend Xstream G30 for this particular series of Focus which is in fact red. The colour in coolant is generally just a dye often used to help distinguish an OEM part number from after-market alternatives. As with any other fluid, the important thing is specification and again you can rely on our guaranteed application guide at if you are left in any doubt.

5.      Transmission

For this particular series of Focus, Ford use a range of transmissions that includes manual, conventional automatic and CVT each with a different fluid recommendation.  As well as the differing fluid requirements, change intervals and capacities will vary depending on the type of transmission so we would advise you to either consult the handbook or use Comma’s online application guide available at to ensure that you get the right product for the vehicle you are servicing.

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