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hello everyone


I am a mum to two little ones and really need a car to get around as live in quite a rural area.


Having got my 2002 2.0l ford focus petrol ghia MOT'd a few months ago it sailed through. (has done 78k miles)


Unfortunately, yesterday it started making a horrible noise like a lawnmower and lost a lot of power.


I had a mobile mechanic come out today and have been told not to drive it. Something probably has corroded/broken and gotten into the engine.


The main problem I have is that the entire engine would need to be taken apart to diagnose exactly what is wrong with it - cost £hundreds, plus the mechanic is pretty sure he's seen this before and the engine is probably damaged along with other parts around it meaning new engine + parts. I.e. cost more than the value of the car!


So I went from having a car worth around £1500 to £100 in the space of an hour :(


I can't help feeling that because I am a young women and don't understand the technical aspects of what he was saying that I could be taken for a ride.


Can anyone offer any advice - would be very grateful


Thank you


would be impossible to say the diagnosis is right or wrong over the www...but, as a mechanic myself, does sound a bit strange.


perhaps a bit more detail of how it manifested might help....such as did you get any warning of the problem before it happened, any warning lights prior to it, or once it went pear shaped...has it lost any oil/water since..does it start and run now...


the suggestion of something being corroded/broken seems a strange, very unspecific, stab in the dark to me...any idea what was done to come to this conclusion, such as any idea of tests carried out.


think it might pay to get a 2nd opinion before condemning the engine or commiting yourself to expensive repairs...


what could be a help, is to video/record the engine running and post that on here



thanks so much for responding.


No engine fault lights - no fault lights at all. I did limp it to a garage first and they plugged it into a diagnostic machine which came back with no faults. They said they thought there was actually something in the engine.


They said they would need a few hours to investigate but can't see it until late next week. A friend rec the mobile mechanic.


He said that it was something well known with the model/year/engine and that Ford don't even make the parts to replace anything hence the need for a new engine.


He took a few 'layers' of engine off but couldn't find anything, I think he was testing the pressure of valves (I had to start engine whilst he did this)


There was a little noise last week but I actually thought it was the exhaust as it seemed to only happen after I took my foot off the accelerator.


Just sounds like something is tapping (bit like a diesel) and although a 2 litre, I could put my foot to the floor and the power just wasn't there.


It's still running but have been told not to drive as may worsen it.


Not noticed any loss of water or oil, although the chap did comment that the coolant was low???


its starting to sound a bit more serious as two seperate opinions have pointed out engine rattle.


though im not aware of a common problem that ford dont make parts for?????? doesnt nercessarily mean they're wrong.


sounds like a compressikon test was done, was there any mention of a problem with low compression?


Hi thanks - the compression test was fine I think - not low

If that's the case, would be strange to condemn an engine if compressions are good...
Starting to wonder if rattle is timing related, not something I have come across before but I wonder if cam timing has slipped which would explain rattle and power loss..has to be worth checking before a major strip down
Timing tensioner maybe/ injectors possibly but less likely, maybe a tappet could be getting stuck ive seen that before, or as wase said timing could be out its a tuffy. Could be something simple like above or serious unfortunately

I am unsure as to where this mechanic thinks that Ford dont manufacture these parts anymore, I am very sure that they still do! I would agree with the above, it could be as simple as a tappet, but worst case scenario, the injectors are shot, the valves are bent and the debris is in the engine, in which case, the idea of a new engine is fairly accurate.


Unfortunately I would say that this is going to be a long problem to diagnose. My suggestion to you would be to pick up a cheap runaround to get you by, as this is something that will inevitably take some time to resolve.


thank you so much everyone for your input - it's been really helpful.


I think the upshot is that I can't even afford to pay a garage the time it would take to fully diagnose the problem so think will just have to sell the car. Perhaps a local mechanic who has some time to spare can make some money on it!


I'm based in Norfolk if anyone knows someone that might be interested!


Totally genuine car - got all paperwork available, service history, dealer invoices, mot from Jan 2013. Perhaps if you could please pass this on that would be really wonderful.


Thanks again :)


If the car runs and moves, try webuyanycar, they may give you a better price than a scrappie,


thanks - I've just gone on the site but they won't because of the engine problem :)


I suppose I just have to accept that anything better than the scrap value will be a bonus lol! Have to laugh or would cry!


At least the bus has been fun!

shame, but understandable

think your right in finding a mechanic that could be intersted in it, without labour rates, could end up a cheap repair...put word around local garages/spares shops and you could end up with a taker.

webuy are a waste of time, what they offer over the phone/net rarely matches the final offer..theyre looking to make money, there wont be much profit on an 02 focus with engine fault if they give you a reasonable price..expect about £ be better off with scrapping but search for best offer as prices vary quite a bit at the moment

Alternatively you could sell the car for scrap yourself. Sell parts like the seats, headlights, steering wheel, jack, spare wheel, all wheels (whatever) and get as much money as you can from it, then, when you have finished selling parts, call a local recycling company, they can just pick it up with a claw and drop it on the back of a van and give you further scrap money for it (if that is the way you decide to go).


If you have the space for the car for now though, selling the parts is the best way to recoup costs. A car worth £100 in full to the scrap man, can be worth £500 - £1000 if you sell things separately.

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