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2003 Focus 1.8Tdci Zetec - Cutting Out/dirty Diesel?


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#1 pji

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Posted 04 March 2010 - 08:00 PM

For the last month or so, my Focus has started to give me some trouble. Please bear with me as I try my best to explain, as I am not a "car guy" by any stretch of the imagination!

Basically once month ago, it started fine but within the first few km it started to stall but did not cut out. The best way I can describe it is that is lost power for like 1/2 second and kinda lurched, then it was ok.. This only happened from start and after a few km it was fine..

I brought it back to the garage where I bought it (50km from my house so not too easy to get to/from) as my 12 month warranty was just about to end. They kept it for a few days and when I picked it up, they told me the fuel filter was dirty because of dirty diesel. They changed it, and charged me as it was a non warranty issue. It was fine for 3 or 4 days, then it started again.. a lot less than before but I was concerned. I had not added any diesel in the meantime.. I had to fill up again and it stayed the same. Not as bad as before.. just once or twice a day, not the 10 times it was before.

This was last Friday. On Monday morning, things took a turn for the worse. The car not not only lurches on me.. but cuts out. It almost cuts out 7 or 8 times but it doesn't.. but maybe 2 or 3 times it cuts out.. and I have to quickly restart the engine. I went to my usual mechanic (just a few km away) and he says that there is probably still dirt in the tank. He gave me some additive to put in which I did and told me to come back in a few days..

Before I go back, I was hoping someone could help me out as its getting very very annoying. Now it ONLY happens in the first few km. After that everything is fine and its does not happen again. Could dirty diesel be the reason? I would have thought that it would happen at random intervals if that was the case, not just at the start..

The only other thing I have noticed is that when it cuts out, sometimes the battery light (and only that) comes on.. Could the battery be the culprit??

Thanks for reading this far and I really hope someone has some advice.

Paul

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#2 artscot79

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Posted 04 March 2010 - 10:24 PM

For the last month or so, my Focus has started to give me some trouble. Please bear with me as I try my best to explain, as I am not a "car guy" by any stretch of the imagination!

Basically once month ago, it started fine but within the first few km it started to stall but did not cut out. The best way I can describe it is that is lost power for like 1/2 second and kinda lurched, then it was ok.. This only happened from start and after a few km it was fine..

I brought it back to the garage where I bought it (50km from my house so not too easy to get to/from) as my 12 month warranty was just about to end. They kept it for a few days and when I picked it up, they told me the fuel filter was dirty because of dirty diesel. They changed it, and charged me as it was a non warranty issue. It was fine for 3 or 4 days, then it started again.. a lot less than before but I was concerned. I had not added any diesel in the meantime.. I had to fill up again and it stayed the same. Not as bad as before.. just once or twice a day, not the 10 times it was before.

This was last Friday. On Monday morning, things took a turn for the worse. The car not not only lurches on me.. but cuts out. It almost cuts out 7 or 8 times but it doesn't.. but maybe 2 or 3 times it cuts out.. and I have to quickly restart the engine. I went to my usual mechanic (just a few km away) and he says that there is probably still dirt in the tank. He gave me some additive to put in which I did and told me to come back in a few days..

Before I go back, I was hoping someone could help me out as its getting very very annoying. Now it ONLY happens in the first few km. After that everything is fine and its does not happen again. Could dirty diesel be the reason? I would have thought that it would happen at random intervals if that was the case, not just at the start..

The only other thing I have noticed is that when it cuts out, sometimes the battery light (and only that) comes on.. Could the battery be the culprit??

Thanks for reading this far and I really hope someone has some advice.

Paul


well first you need the fault codes scanned to see if the fault is showing up by the sound of it i doubt dirty diesel thereason being the filters job is to cut the dirt out of the diesel and it would be extremely bad to clog the filter so soon it sounds to me that there are a few possibilities and none are diesel Problem: Engine does not run properly or fails to start.

Solution: A problem has been identified with the diesel pump and wear to the rollers and shoes. This is caused by insufficient bedding in when the car is new. This can also create small metal particles to contaminate the diesel and damage many components including the injectors. A sample of diesel should be inspected. A new diesel pump with revised rollers and shoes should be fitted along with new injectors and other parts if required.

Ford Focus and Mondeo 1.8 2.0 TDCi 2000 - 2003

Problem: Engine hard to start, lack of power, rough idling etc.

Solution: A common problem has been identified with the above models and an insufficient signal from the camshaft postion sensor (CPS). The fault code P0340 may have been triggered which relates to the CPS. A revised wiring harness / sensor should be installed which increases the sensor signal from 5 volts to 12 volts. The increase in voltage will provide an improved signal from the sensor.


other things can be vehicle speed sensor faulty dash cluster and or faulty temperature sensors.




#3 pji

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 08:05 PM

Thanks artscot. I just got my Focus back. For now, all seems well. They told me it was a camshaft sensor fault. I wont know for sure til tomorrow morning when I start it from cold but hopefully it'll be ok.

Pity I had to pay for a new filter, fitting for what appears to be nothing.. That'll teach me that I should just go to a Ford garage next time!

#4 stef123

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 08:14 PM

Thanks artscot. I just got my Focus back. For now, all seems well. They told me it was a camshaft sensor fault. I wont know for sure til tomorrow morning when I start it from cold but hopefully it'll be ok.

Pity I had to pay for a new filter, fitting for what appears to be nothing.. That'll teach me that I should just go to a Ford garage next time!


atleast the new filter wont do any harm, out of curiousity how much did that cost?

#5 pji

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 08:59 PM

100 euro. And I'm sure it wont do any harm, but an extra 100 euro in my pocket would not have done any harm either! :)

#6 pji

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Posted 09 March 2010 - 08:32 AM

Looks like I spoke too soon... started it up this morning and its back.. not as bad as before, it did not cut out but "jumped" 4 or 5 times.. Guess its back to the garage.. again..

#7 pji

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Posted 11 March 2010 - 09:05 AM

Update

So it now appears as if its the inlet metering control valve. Thanks to L S Auto Repairs for telling me this was a possible cause..

Before I spend more money on this issue, does this sound like a possible cause?

#8 Popa_doc

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Posted 28 May 2011 - 07:49 AM

Your issue sounds very much similar to the problems I have been having with my Focus 2003 1.8 tdci.

Before i start I'd like to say I live in Spain and work in Gibraltar. I don't speak a word of Spanish so dealing with Garages here is very difficult.

I got a tank full of bad diesel from the local supermarket(50% diesel and 50% water). After being towed to the local Spanish ford dealer. They discovered the problem and charged me 200 to clean the tank and lines etc(the supermarket refused to accept any responsibility).

Shortly after the car would drop into limp home mode or cut out all together at least once a day. The coil light would flash to indicate there was a problem. A quick restart always fixed it so It did not bother me to much at that point as it was only happening once a day.

Over time it got worse, cutting out or going it limp home mode every 30 minuted which is very dangerous especially in the outside lane on the motor way. To make matters worse it stop starting all together leaving me no option but to use a quick start spray.

I replaced the CAM sensors first as this was the cheap option and something I could do myself. This did not work. In the end I took the car to fords to have the codes read. They quoted me 1800 to change the full common rail system which is more than the car is worth so that was not a option. They also refused to give me the test results that I paid 60 for so I could not take these results to another garage.

I went for a second and third opinion to have the fault codes read and none of these big garages could indicate what the issue was. I had lots of different answers. After lots of time, frustration and money I found a back street garage who did a pressure test on the Injectors. One of the injectors was leaking to much fuel and therefore dropping the fuel pressure on the common rail.

The solution to my problem is to change the faulty injector. There not cheap (especially in Spain) so i'm looking at ebay as i know a garage that can code them.


To cut a long story short.. Find a garage that can pressure test the injectors. TDCI injectors are prone to damage from contaminated fuel. Try to find a diesel specialist who can test and if possible refurbish the injectors which i believe costs about 140 pounds(I don't have that option in Spain.. Unless anyone knows any different).

I hope I have helped by passing on my woes.

Good luck

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