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Winter Diesel Additives, 1.6Tdci Blocked Fuel Filter

Diesel fuel filter supermarket fuel

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#1 jst008

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 04:37 PM

Ford 1.6TDCi & engine malfunction - limp home mode.

 

I drive a 2011 Mondeo Titanium X 1.6TDCi Estate, the Econetic version which on the whole is a very nice car to car.  But this week I have suffered the dreaded engine malfunction warning light & the car goes into limp home mode.  Stop car turn off engine, restart which resets it, but it happens again 100m up the road even if your trying to be very careful.  When thi shappens on a motorway it's virually impossible to rejoin teh carriageway as you need to accelerate hard.


 

As this has happened twice in 4 months the garage made some further calls to Ford who told them that the additives that supermarkets add to diesel are not the same as the additives big brands add to diesel.  So although I'm doing nothing wrong buy using supermarket diesel when you mix it with big brand diesel it causes a "gelling" in the fuel which in turn clogs the filter which reduces fuel pressure which the engine does not like, hence engine malfunction.

 

I've read other posts talk about having replacement injectors / new dpf's but this (i'm told) is all wrong.  Also the problem is common only to 1.6TDCi engines as these have much finer filters (apparently).  The technician said this was a "southern" phenomenon as the problem is rarely heard of north of Birmingham.  Something to do with the cr@p fule we get in London.

 

The additives are generally added from September to March so during this period the advice was to stick to one  type of fuel or the other but do not mix.  Has anyone else heard of this?



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#2 jeebowhite

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 05:06 PM

sounds like a mechanic who doesnt really understand what he is on about :D

 

on an old car that has never known anything but supermarket fuel, I suppose so. Because the constant beating year after year of lesser quality fuel, it could build up, but on a 2011?

 

I suspect that the fuel filter is clogged and that is about it.

 

Have you checked for any codes?



#3 jst008

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 08:59 AM

Thanks for your reply jeebowhite, apparently this is what Ford themselves have told the dealership & it is not what one of their mechanics have said.

The first time it happened a new fuel filter was fitted by a main dealer near where I live & this time 4 months later another fuel filter has been fitted by another main dealer near where I work.  Two different Main Dealers both diagnosing the same fault.  As I said above it's common only to the 1.6 diesel engines as these have a much finer filter (????). 

The fuel filter was clogged & has been changed twice, I'm doing on average a tank of fuel a week, approx 600 miles so there is plenty going through it.

This time the RAC plugged his laptop in & (apart from not having my engine as it was too new for his software) he did find a coupel of codes when looking at another 1.6 diesel for a Fusion - these codes were related to low fuel pressure at the injectors etc, I have them written down if you want them.  But he also suggested it was the fuel filter & has seen it a few times in the cold weather.



#4 Stoney871

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 10:07 AM

It's due to waxing in cold weather and a fine filter.
Try putting in some BG248 (eBay) which will apparently reduce waxing and also improve the fuel system efficiency in cold weather.

#5 jeebowhite

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 10:41 AM

Agree with Clives observation, but I think the blaming solely of the supermarket fuel is a bit far fetched...



#6 FOCA

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 12:54 PM


 

Winter diesel is distributed in the UK and ROI between November and march, at lower tempratures the winter diesel does not "wax" or solidify, realative to summer diesel, here are the specs -


 

Summer fuel CFPP value -5.C time frame 16.03 - 15.11 Cloud point 3.C


 

Winter fuel CFPP value -15.C time frame 16.11 - 15.03 Cloud point - 5.C


 

So at minus five degrees centigrade, its the summer diesel that would clog filters, not winter diesel, so saying winter deisel clogs filters is "garbage", winter diesel is safe to use and will not damage your engine/ clog filters etc BUT it has a (slightly) lower calorific value - (slightly) less MPG/ lower performance


 

On one of the other forums/ sites there is a chap that works as a tanker driver - he delivers petrol and diesel to supermakkets and filling stations, in the same tanker and its- >>>THE SAME FUEL !<<<


 

The cars are supposed to be able to deal with different quality of fuel from all over the world (these cars are sold all over the world) - it sounds like the manufactures have found a "scape goat" in blaming fuel for design faults etc - the car should be able to cope with it - the problem is more likely to be the CATs DPFs, EGRs they stick on modern cars


 

Its a bit like if the bought a computer and it starts "playing up" you contact the hardware suppliers - they blame the software - you contact the software suppliers - they blame the hardware - now car manufacturers blame supermarket fuel - the car should run on any (legal, pump, diesel for a diesel/ petrol for a petrol etc) fuel available in the UK, Finer filters - why?, what for? ive done 100,000 miles in my Mondeo with no fuel/ injector related problems - it did not need finer filters and runs perfectly - it runs well on supermarket fuel with no problems - ever


 

High octane/ cetane fuel - Yes you can get high octane fuel - it will make a difference if you have a highly modified high performance petrol (especially turbocharged or a high compression engine) car, on a regular car, you may not notice a difference at all and the (more expensive) fuel is a waste of money, any improvements in MPG may be offset by the extra cost and the most cost- effective may be the cheapest fuel you can find


 

Diesel "stength" is measured in cetane - again, an engine setup for this with a custom remap or a "learning" ECU (which may need to be reset for the higher cetane fuel) may see a small advantage (but it may be quite subtle) - it may be the "cleaning" components of additives that has the most effect (cleaning injectors etc) some of these additives may contain chemicals such as kerosene which may eat through/ melt rubber seals so should be used sparingly/ once in a while


 

Often a good "italian tune uo" (a good thrashing, once warmed up) works juast as well - in my experience, blanking the EGR and removing the CAT and/of DPF works wonders/ better than "snake oil" and the engine seems to run great on even the cheapest fuel available


 

Petrol stations/ supermanket/ "dodgy" diesel -


 

Fuel is very expensive, sometimes illegal, unlicensed "suppliers" take red diesel (which is supplied to agriculture and has a red dye added to it, it has less/ no customs/ exise duty paid on it (80% of the price of UK pump fuel is duty/ tax) so it is much cheaper, it is basically the same bar the red dye )


 

These "dodgy" suppliers strip the red dye out by filtering or solvents/ chemicals, these solvents may still be in the fuel they supply, the way this fuel is transported stored may get it contaminated with dirt, rust and water etc (it may even have been stolen from a tank on a farm with these contaminants) it may also have had other things added (eg used veg oil from a chip shop - some diesel engines can run on this and pump fuel now contains 5-7% bio - diesel (red veg oil) anyway)


 

Regular station - bought pump fuel (from main oil companies or supermarkets) may contain contaminants - water, dirt, oil, rust - from the bottom of dirty tanks, a new/ newly-built supermarket filling station may sell much cleaner fuel than an old filling station from a major oil company


 

Hope ive dispelled a few "urban myths" or made you think/ made you research the subject in more detail, hopfully from a reputable source - remember - anybody can write anything on the internet (even me!) - if i said the moon was made of cheese this could spread out like a virus with hundreds of posts on different sites saying the moon was made of cheese untill eventually, there would be more posts about the moon made of cheese than otherwise - this does not mean the moon is made of cheese, or a replacing your DMF with a solid flyweel will shake your car to bits & break your crank, or tuning boxes will kill your injectors, or supermarket fuel is bad for your engine :)



#7 bladeage

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 07:18 PM

It could also possibly be that supermarket fuel is a blend of regular diesel and Bio diesel, they state that it is an approximate 7% bio diesel mix but having run a vw on supermarket fuel for 6 years I can say that it used to clog the fuel filters up, I reckon I had to change mine every 10 k ish. Bio diesel I think is basically just vegetable oil which I am guessing will solidify quicker when cold, maybe that coupled with motorway miles (fuel sitting still) is clogging it up?



#8 bladeage

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 07:20 PM

p.s. my dad had a Merc 6 cylinder truck that he used to fill up at moreasons and he had loads of trouble with that every now and again due to blocked fuel lines and filters!



#9 BOF

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 09:19 PM

I haven't heard of exactly this, but there is a potential problem with biodiesel. The bio fuel is chemically different from good old fashioned straight-from-a-hole-in-the-ground stuff, and some additives are not compatible with the bio. So, if you bought, say, half a tank of hole-in-the-ground fuel (not that you can normally get 100% hole-in-the-ground stuff, these days) with hole-in-the-ground compatible additives, and filled up with high-bio fuel, the additives could turn to a gel and that could block the fuel filter.

 

I think that one of the Red X additives says that it is only compatible with up to Bio 10 (ie, 10% Bio) for this reason. 'Normal' pump fuel is a minimum of 5% bio, and it seems that it would only take a bump to 10% to start causing problems with that.



#10 FOCA

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 11:17 PM

in reply to Bladage & BOF-

 

Yes, previously "old fashioned" "hole-in-the ground" diesel (petrolium based or fossil fuel) did not have bio diesel or veg oil in it, it was made from frfined crude oil, the crude oil comes out of the ground on land or under the sea (eg - the north sea) its called fossil fuel because it is made from fossils millions of years old, once these run out there will be none left, forever, this is why it is called "un - sustainable"

 

Vegatable oil is made from rape seed, as long as the sun shines, and there is topsoil to grow it, it can be produced again and again, forever - this is called "sustainable" because the power comes from the sun - if you can run your car on this - it would be effectively solar powered (indirectly)

 

the old fashiond "fossil fuel" diesel (without bio diesel/ fossil fuel added- lets just call it "old diesel") had a lot of sulphor in it - this caused a lot of smoke and pollution, but the sulphor was very good at lubricating diesel pumps/ injectors etc

 

because the sulphor in "old diesel" caused smoke / pollution it was removed from diesel eg "low sulphor diesel" without this lubricant, it would eventually have caused failures in diesel engines without something to replace the lubricatio of sulphor

 

Many things were tried, including 2 - stroke oil and other additives , eventually it was found that adding a little bio deisel/ veg oil was enough to lubricate diesel engines, not as well as high sulphor "old diesel", but better than other things tried (including 2 stroke oil)

 

so from about 2007, most of the sulphor was removed from diesel and replaced with about 5% bio - diesel/ veg oil

 

So the "pump diesel" you buy from you supermarket or filling station contains 5 to 7% bio-diesel/ veg oil and less sulphor than "old diesel"

 

All post 2008 diesel cars are designed to run on this blend (or should be :) )  

 

many pre - 2000 diesel engines are "tough as nails" and can run on virtually anything (veg oil, recycled chip fat, "old diesel", new diesel, bio diesel etc - even supermarket fuel (ha ha :lol: ) with no problems, and many TDDIs TDs etc   ) 

 

some common rail diesel engines designed/ built between 1998 - 2008 (roughly) may have a problem running on modern (low sulphor with 5-7% bio) pump diesel and may suffer premature inector or pump failure (because they were designed for high sulphor "old diesel") - the bio diesel/ veg oil may be sufficient to replace the lubricicity

 

The Mondeo mk3 TDCI diesels (2.0L and 2.2L 2000-2007 ) come into this catigory

 

BOF has a valid and important point about mixing additives to modern fuel that was designed for "old diesel" that had no veg oil/ bio diesel in it, who knows what will happen in the injectors, the combustion chambers etc (under heat and pressure)

 

the additives may have a bad reaction when they become mixed with (5-7%) bio diesel

 

there was some talk on the forum/ site of adding 2-stroke oil to (modern pump) diesel in your TDCI, as there are 3 basic types of two stroke oil -

 

Castor based

 

Synthetec

 

Semi - synthetic

 

which were designed to be mixed with petrol to be used in 2-stroke (petrol) engines, (not 4-stroke diesel engines), and if you switch from one type of 2-stroke oil to another you would have to strip your 2-stroke engine down, clean out the old oil, and rebuild it with the new oil, or it may produce "sludge" and sieze

 

so i would be careful what you put in your tank - and if you must put 2-stroke oil  in it stick to the same brand/ type

 

And any additives - make sure they are formulated/ safe with modern diesel          



#11 jst008

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 11:04 AM

Interesting replies - thanks.

 

My engine is a Euro V emission standard engine. To meet strict Stage V emission regulations, the Duratorq TDCi engine has been comprehensively revised including new solenoid fuel injectors, now with eight smaller holes, work with a maximum injection pressure of 2,000 bar for improved fuel atomisation, compared with the former six-hole injectors and lower 1,800 bar pressure.

Not my own words but interesting point about the smaller nozzles.

 

There are some who say supermarkets add more bio-diesel to the mix than main brands, to lower the sulphur content.

Low sulphur diesel has an increased wax content, the result of this increase could include higher cloud point (where first wax crystals form) & greater winter wax gelation, which is also likely to increase fuel filter plugging.  Low sulphur diesel with more than 5% biodiesel has a high wax content, which increases wax gelling = premature filter plugging.

 

Both of my breakdowns happened during sudden drop in temperature to -4 / -5degC.  Maybe the garages were caught out as the winter additive is added at the station & I had a tank full of fuel which had no additive & was therefore susceptible. My last three tank fills have been Sainsburys City Diesel.



#12 FOCA

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 02:21 PM

Interesting replies - thanks.

 

My engine is a Euro V emission standard engine. To meet strict Stage V emission regulations, the Duratorq TDCi engine has been comprehensively revised including new solenoid fuel injectors, now with eight smaller holes, work with a maximum injection pressure of 2,000 bar for improved fuel atomisation, compared with the former six-hole injectors and lower 1,800 bar pressure.

Not my own words but interesting point about the smaller nozzles.

 

There are some who say supermarkets add more bio-diesel to the mix than main brands, to lower the sulphur content.

Low sulphur diesel has an increased wax content, the result of this increase could include higher cloud point (where first wax crystals form) & greater winter wax gelation, which is also likely to increase fuel filter plugging.  Low sulphur diesel with more than 5% biodiesel has a high wax content, which increases wax gelling = premature filter plugging.

 

Both of my breakdowns happened during sudden drop in temperature to -4 / -5degC.  Maybe the garages were caught out as the winter additive is added at the station & I had a tank full of fuel which had no additive & was therefore susceptible. My last three tank fills have been Sainsburys City Diesel.

I think you are right about the filling stations being caught out, we are half way through march and experiencing sub- zero tempratures, this is about the time winter diesel is replaced with dummer diesel - summer deisel needs +3 degrees C to prevent waxing

 

"waxing" refers to the fuel turning from liquid into solid/ part solid ((viscosity) or like treacle it can even solidify at very low tempratures) -  diesel or bio-diesel  does not have wax in it-  wax is not added it cannot have a high or low wax content

 

As far as i am aware winter diesel is not just summer diesel with additives added (eg anti-freeze) it is a different spec/ formulation produced in the refinery/ etc, the  ron/ octane etc (petrol) cetane bio-oil content (diesel) and specification is tightly controlled (legit commercial filling stations)  

 

You are 100% right about a higher bio diesel/ veg oil content raising the waxing temprature, some stations supply 5% bio-diesel, some 7% (the 7% is one of the supermarkets, not sure/ can't remember which one) - it still has to conform to the summer/ winter diesel fuel specs though

 

I add my own veg oil to my fuel tank - in the winter i have to use 100% pump fuel, and as it gets warmer i can add a higher percentage of (pure) vegatable oil - if i had a tank heater conversion and twin tank (1 for diesel for starting - another for veg oil - running when warmed up) i could run veg oil all year round - the veg oil can freeze solid at sub-zero tempratures, ive experimented with additives and found adding (winter) diesel is the best / safest way to lower the freezing/ solidifing point/ temprature   

 

If your car has smaller, finer injectors, it will be more prone to problems with fuel getting thicker in lower tempratures than other cars

 

As some one with an interest in tuning diesel engines/ cars my main intrest re- fuel/ diesel - is its effect on performance, scince i started running/ adding veg oil to my tank/ car i have become more interested in what "they" put in diesel fuel,- it is difficult to get accurate information about this and there is a lot of misinformation/ conflicting information on the net about this,  big oil companies seem to be quite secretive         



#13 bladeage

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 06:17 PM

Excellent posts! thank you!



#14 kisscycles

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 07:33 PM

exactly the same problem with same spec engine, 6 months old C-Max. and the recommendation from Ford Tec colleagues was to stay with one brand of fuel when the temp is around zero. The car was put into a Ford Dealer (Essex Ford) and the words of wisdom I was given 'we have had a lot of them' ah well. The main concern was the way it failed - I was only able to drive at the limit of fuel supply, max 15mph, not to bad but this was the M25. It can be cured by sitting and running the engine and if you are lucky the heat will lift the temp to allow the fuel to run - took half hour for my car. 



#15 stooge75

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Posted 17 March 2013 - 01:00 PM

Haha I love this discussion on supermarket branded diesel.
What a loada bumf! The diesel tanker drops off fuel where I live,to Asda 1st,then drops off the other half at the texaco garage mile up the road. 1 day he delivered to asda then next stop was the BP garage.
So no chance!
Your injectors probably need recon'd or something

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