Ford Focus Tail Light Buyer’s Guide
The Ford Focus is the successor of the Ford Escort, it was released in 1998 to target the young professional market.
There are two types of ford focus tail lights, OEM Parts, and OE Replacement Parts. Both boast of the same quality, however, OE Replacements are almost always more affordable and more readily accessible.
Make sure that the tail lights you purchase are road legal according to your state’s laws.
Ford tail lights range from $15 to $390 depending on its brand, design, and what year model your Ford Focus is.
The Ford Focus is a compact car that took over the reins of the Ford Escort. It was first released in 1998 with three different body configurations. You could have chosen either the sedan, the hatchback, or the wagon, but regardless of your choice, all of them were built be the best at three main qualities: being small, affordable, and practical. Its target market was young professionals looking for affordable basic private transportation, as its older brothers and sisters were marketed more towards the high-end competition.
For compact cars like the Ford Focus, visibility is everything. You wouldn’t want to get into accidents due to poor visibility, especially if it happens out of nowhere. One component that will help you stay visible even on rainy days and nights is your pair of tail lights.
What types of tail lights are there?
Ford Focus Aftermarket parts and tail lights are either Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts or Original Equipment replacement parts. Knowing the differences between either label would help determine how much you would have to spend in purchasing an upgrade or a replacement Ford Focus tail light. So, what are these differences?
OEM Parts are those that are manufactured either by the automaker themselves or by third-party manufacturers certified by the automaker. These are usually what one would order and purchase through your dealers, as they have the easiest contact with the suppliers and manufacturers of these parts.
OE Replacement Parts
OE Replacement parts, on the other hand, are those that are manufactured by other parties not considered as certified parts suppliers of the carmakers. These are the more readily available and more affordable alternatives to OEM Parts.
The most common misconception about OE Replacement parts, however, is their quality or lack thereof. Considering their difference in price, people tend to believe that these are inferior choices. However, this is wrong. OE Replacement parts go through the same rigorous quality control that OEM Parts do. These undergo the same testing and manufacturing processes that are employed by the carmaker or its official parts suppliers. Sometimes, extra functionality is even given to the parts in order to cater to more upgrades and future considerations.
Keeping up with road rules
The sheer number of choices you may have with aftermarket ford tail lights is almost limitless, making customization and personalization immensely possible. However, before you purchase those smoked tail lights that you’ve always wanted, check the corresponding laws that might get you in trouble. For example, in the state of Washington, tail lights are defined to “emit a red light plainly visible from a distance of 1000 feet to the rear.”
Finding the right fit
It’s important to purchase the proper fitting part for your vehicle, as the wrong one could prove to be a hassle to return. Make sure that the tail lights you’re purchasing correspond to the right year, model, and make of your car. If you have a 2017 Ford Focus ST, don’t make the mistake of purchasing a 2015 Ford Focus RS tail light. These mistakes happen to everyone, but minimize yours by inputting your car’s information on CarParts.com’s search filters and find the right fit for you and your car.
How much are Ford Focus tail lights?
The price for Ford Focus tail lights ranges from $15 to $390 depending on the brand, design, and what year model your Ford Focus is.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does the Ford Focus' third tail light provide a significant advantage in terms of safety over only a pair of tail lights? Is it just for aesthetic purposes?
Although it may seem an accessory, the third tail light on the Ford Focus actually aids the driver more in avoiding possible rear-end collisions. In fact, an experiment in the 1970s showed that taxis with a third tail light suffered 60.6% less rear-end collisions than those with only two tail lights. This suggests that the third tail light helps in increasing the trailing driver's reaction time to prevent miscalculated stops that may lead to collisions.
If there is no time or budget to visit a mechanic, is there an easy DIY alternative in detecting a third tail light leak on the Ford Focus?
Unlike most cars, the Ford Focus has a third tail light on its rear end. Aside from damages such as cracks and fogging, there is a possibility for the third tail light to leak. To detect leaks without having to visit a mechanic is pretty easy and trouble-free as it only requires the driver's observation. Usually, when there is a leak on the third tail light, there is a noticeable condensation or appearance of large bubbles on the tail light housing. This is made observable by spraying soapy water on the housing and by setting the Ford Focus' interior fan to high. If there are no signs of bubbles or condensation, then the tail lights are fine.
Instead of buying new Ford Focus tail lights, are there cheap alternatives in making the stock lights look shiny and new?
Since the ultraviolet light coming from the sun can fog up the plastic tail lights on the Ford Focus, it is important to constantly maintain the surface quality of the lamps to make them look new. Replacements are costly, but luckily, tools that help polish the stock tail lights are readily available at home or at the local hardware store. Polishing the tail lights to look new require only materials like sand papers and 100% cotton rags. A good tip would be to use acrylic buffing compounds that help remove scratches on the tail lights.