Ford Ka: common problems and solutions

The Ford Ka is the smallest car produced by Ford, and has been in production since 1996. You can have a look at our full review by clicking here. These cars are known to be very practical despite their size, but lacking refinement which has its share of problems. Listed below are some of the most common problems associated with Ka and their solutions. You will also see our difficulty rating which informs you on the difficulty of the task at hand. Some problems were subject to recalls from Ford which meant that these were fixed by Ford at no cost to the vehicle owner. The Ka has a surprisingly low amount of recalls.

If you see your problem listed below then we can help you to find a resolution to your problem. We can help you find the parts you need to fix your problem at a fraction of the price. You can search our website or call us on *0905 232 3000 to begin the search for the solution.

Ford Ka common problems and solutions

Picture of a black Ford Ka

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Fan blower motor problems

Problem: Any Ka up until 1999 could have a faulty fan motor blower which does not operate on settings 1, 2 or 3 and has a smell of burning plastic. The connectors on the blower motor multiplug may not be connecting properly leading to the multiplug melting.

Solution: You will need to fit a revised blower motor resistor and wiring loom to solve the problem.


Brake fluid leakage

Problem: On a 2000 Ford Ka the brake fluid warning light may come on prior to there needing any sort of top up. This is caused by a leak in the brake hose connected to the wheel cylinder.

Solution: It will most likely need tightened to the new recommended torque 17.5nm. If this doesn't fix it then you might need to replace either the brake hose or wheel cylinder.


Central locking problem

Problem: The 1999 Ka was prone to the central locking not working due to the pins on the door wiring harness getting corroded or damaged by water leaks.

Solution: You might be able to clean and re-use, if not you will have to fit new pins. You should also fill the gap at the cable grommet to stop any further leaks.


Wheel cylinder problems

Problem: This problem occurred on vehicles built between 1996 and 1999 as water leaked into the rear wheel cylinders, causing the brakes to stick and make a funny noise.

Solution: The best way to stop this is to install a rubber gasket around the wheel cylinder.


Rust problems

Problem: The underneath of the chassis (especially around the wheel arches) simply rots away overtime. The metal used just doesn't seem to be able to handle various weather conditions over a prolonged period.

Solution: You may want to try and weld up some of the rusted and broken areas however, if the vehicle is left too long it maybe a trip to the scrap yard as the cost maybe too high to get it through the MOT.


TPS sensor problems

Problem: On the 1996 Ka there have been reported issues with the revs being too high when changing gears. This is due to the TPS (Throttle Position Sensor) not working correctly as it had bad connectors.

Solution: To fix this, you have to fit a new sensor and wiring loom. This problem has been rectified on vehicles after 1996.


Rear brake problems

Problem: The rear brake drums on the 1996 Ka were known to get damaged when tightening the wheel bolts causing a vibration. The wheels, brake drums and wheel hubs were revised to sort this problem.

Solution: You have to fit the revised parts to solve this issue.


The part you need: You will find the parts you need for this problem by clicking here

Idle speed control valve (ISCV)

Problem: This problem leads to stalling at junctions. The ISCV is also known as the Air bypass valve and is located on the inlet manifold. Have a look at the video below:

Solution:To solve this problem you have to fit a new ISCV.



Considering the Ford Ka has been in production since 1996, there have not been many recalls, which is testament to its good build quality. There have been 3 recalls in total, all to do with problems with the brakes. Below are the list of recalls. This list is taken from the Department of Transport recalls database. Click the links to find more information on each recall.

The above list is not an exhaustive list and we know that some problems will not be listed. If you are searching for parts at incredibly low prices then check out the Ford Ka parts page now. You can also call us on *0905 232 3000 to talk to one of our specialists.