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2001 Focus 1.8 Zetec Running Issues


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#1 scrappydoo

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 08:56 AM

Got a 2001 Focus 1.8 Zetec and 85k miles with some running issues. Just had a full service (as no history with the car) using correct 5/30 oil, coolant, fuel filter, oil filter, air filter, pollen filter, sparkplugs, brake fluid change. Went out for a run to stick some petrol in and check for any last minute issues and on taking it out it felt sluggish and wouldn't go past 95mph (sorry officer!). Temperature gauge shot upto almost max so went to stop car immediately but before coming to a halt noticed gauge had gone back to the middle, opened bonnet and no obvious signs of overheating.

Continued to the petrol station and filled with some (correct) petrol and on driving back car ran rough (to be fair just replaced battery so put that down to the "adaptive" run) and then sounded very tappetty, engine management light then flashed on.

Stopped and opened bonnet and it seems oil is coming past the breather hose to the air box and when I took the oil cap off it smoked from inside it quite severely. Restarted engine to nurse it back and engine management light out but still runing rough and top end tappetty sounding.

Before I get it scanned any pointers as to what could be the cause? The oil breather hose from the cam cover to the air box is clear and free from blockage, is there anything else obvious to check?

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#2 jeebowhite

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 10:24 AM

Sounds like for a start the thermostat needs replacing, that explains the extreme high then middle of dial!

It sounds like the service you did was extensive enough, but for the mileage - if there was no service history at all, I would be a bit cautious and consider returning the car. really everything you have done, I would have suggested (Service Wise) other than that, you may have to pay as you seem to be doing anyway, to get the DTC codes checked over.

Hopefully someone else can make other suggestions, but other than the EGR valve, catalytic converter, I cant think of anything else that could need replacing...

#3 btmaldon

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 10:58 AM

Only thing I can see that has been missed are the HT Leads. As plugs are not changed very often these days, the leads tend not to like being pulled about.

Apart from that, is there a crankshaft breather on these. Only I remember having top end oil pressure problems (pushing oil through the upper breather into the air box) on some old Audi's I used to own. I found the crancshaft breather being blocked caused it.

#4 scrappydoo

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 11:51 AM

Thermostat has been changed so we can rule that one out. Been reading these 1.8's suffer breather problems, other than the pipe that goes from the rocker cover to the airbox has anyone got a diagram of the breather system so I know where the rest of it is with a view to changing it?

Also could the poor running be caused by a defective speed sensor?

#5 btmaldon

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 12:30 PM

You could try testing the MAF sensor. Disconnect it, and if it runs the same, you know thats not working correctly.

#6 jeebowhite

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 01:04 PM

I odnt think the VSS would be at all responsible for this, it doesnt really have any baring on any of the workings of the engine, only linked to the Volume control on the radio and the dashboard for revs and speed...

#7 scrappydoo

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Posted 19 May 2011 - 09:20 PM

Right, have examined the PCV pipework and it seems OK. Then removed and cleaned the PCV itself....again seemed OK but will replaced anyway.

Scanned car and threw up an issue with No.2 Spark Plug which I examined and discovered it to be saturated with oil, peering down into the cylinder with a torch the rest of the cylinder appeared covered too.

Will this mean that No.2 cylinder has piston ring issues or bore wear or could it be that the breather system has built up pressure pushing the oil into the cylinder? If so why No.2 and none of the rest?

#8 artscot79

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 10:05 AM

Right, have examined the PCV pipework and it seems OK. Then removed and cleaned the PCV itself....again seemed OK but will replaced anyway.

Scanned car and threw up an issue with No.2 Spark Plug which I examined and discovered it to be saturated with oil, peering down into the cylinder with a torch the rest of the cylinder appeared covered too.

Will this mean that No.2 cylinder has piston ring issues or bore wear or could it be that the breather system has built up pressure pushing the oil into the cylinder? If so why No.2 and none of the rest?


the pcv hose at the back of the throttle can block you need to run the engine and rev it while watching the hose would collapse on itself if there are any issues the pcv valve itself may need changed if oil has been neglkected ie not serviced regularly it will gum up the valve other than that it would seem you have ring wear which happens if the oil isnt changed i do mine every 6 months the fact it wouldnt go paqst 95 shows a seroius drop in performance which would be th ecase with ring or bore wear you will get slight drops of oil from the breather hose to airbox which if you look inside is why it has a filter just for that to catch oil vapour and the droplets with a hot engine and hot oil ide be surprised if it didnt smoke from the difference in heat from the outside of the engine to the inside you may need a new water pump if the thermostat has been done or a blocked radiator

#9 scrappydoo

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Posted 22 May 2011 - 10:39 AM

Changed PCV valve and now the rubber pipe (that was mentioned) that goes from the metalpipe under the thermostat to the inlet manifold is collapsing. Has anyone got the part number for this and any idea of cost? Also will it come with a new spring clip?

#10 scrappydoo

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Posted 24 May 2011 - 02:40 PM

Changed the PCV hose today but it's still smoking heavily under high revs through the breather hose that goes to the airbox......any ideas as to where I now stand with it?

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