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Old George

Engine Management Light Issue - After New Cam Belt Fitted

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I wonder if any of you good people could give me the benefit of your knowledge?

I had a new cam belt fitted to my 56 reg MK2 1.6 (petrol) Focus Titanium today at a popular local independent garage. I picked the car up tonight, when i started it up everything sounded nice and smooth but the engine warning light stayed lit up. I switched the engine off and went back in the garage to tell the mechanic, he drove it into the garage and another mechanic checked the code reading, apparently it was either a camshaft or crankshaft error? anyway, it was taken on a test run and on return the management light was out, everything seemed fine so i drove home.

Near to home i pulled up and switched engine off for a couple of minutes then restarted it, management light went off as it should do and i continued home, went for a drive earlier this evening and the management light came on and stayed on.....Any clues?

The car seems to drive just fine, nice and smooth with good acceleration, is it safe to continue driving?

Should i give it a couple of days to see if it cures itself or do i need to get it back to the garage ASAP?

Thanks in advance for any advice offered. ;)

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i would take it back. it sounds like the sensors would need replacing, but i dont know why it would throw an engine light after a timing belt change, so something could be up, or just a simple sensor replacement could fix it. either way i wouldnt take any chances

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if this is a petrol engine, then i would take it back, if its a cam sensor code thats returned, it may well be down to the cams not lined up correctly so definitely needs rechecking

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i would take it back. it sounds like the sensors would need replacing, but i dont know why it would throw an engine light after a timing belt change, so something could be up, or just a simple sensor replacement could fix it. either way i wouldnt take any chances

if this is a petrol engine, then i would take it back, if its a cam sensor code thats returned, it may well be down to the cams not lined up correctly so definitely needs rechecking

Thanks for your replies guys, i'll phone garage in morning, i assume that no damage will occur whilst driving it? As i stated, it seems to drive ok.

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Should be fine, but it might throw itself into limp home mode if the sensor goes too haywire.

Thanks for that, Contacted garage this morning and they asked me to bring it back in, engine light stayed on when i started and remained on whilst driving over to garage (approx 6 miles). Yet again the Focus started up without issue and drove just fine, maybe just slight misalignment of cams?

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Got a surprise call from garage(didn't expect any contact until tomorrow) to say it's ready, started it up at garage and engine light extinguished itself as it should do. After i got home i left it for an hour and no problems............So far!

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What was the resolution?

Timing slightly out. I felt sure it wasn't a serious problem due to the Focus running so well.

If it was an old Ford from the pre-computer era then neither the garage or me would have realised there was a problem.

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Oh dear, after collecting the Focus on Wednesday I've used it every day without the engine light coming back on, then this afternoon I started it up and the light stays on.

I don't get it? It actually runs slightly better than it did before the new cam belt. Should I try disconnecting the battery and see if that clears the light?

If might solve the problem how long should I disconnect for, and should I disconnect both terminals? Should I buy a OBD2 reader and reset the code if disconnecting the battery doesn't cure it?

Thanks in advance for any replies.

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if the lights back is the car 100bhp or 115 bhp as if its the 115bhp independants dont get the timing right at all and if its out it can cause damage to the ti vct cam or the ti vct cam itself is gone i think you should take it to a ford dealer have it looked at explain the situation and if its a fault call the other garage and tell them theyve mucked up if they were using the proper tools it should never have been out the fact they have got the timing out suggests the jobs not been done right at all its not difficult when the cam lock tools used if the timings out they havent done this and likely done it the old way simply marking it up

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Thanks, but if it wasn't done correctly why did the light stay off for days? And why does it seem to run better than before the new cam belt?

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if it is the vct engine, then they still might not have it spot on...

the vct stands for variable timing, so it may well be ok for a few runs but then it may go out of expected range at some point if not set correctly in the first place...would definitely ask to get it checked again

alternatively, it may not be timing related at all and just coincidence...only way to know is get the codes read

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Timing can be a funny things nowadays. Take it back. If place cant fix it suggest u want some refund for the work needed for your car. If theyhad used the corrects tools in first place then the engine wouldnt of reconized the timing change.

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Even one notch out on the belt can throw a fault.

It may not actually cause damage but why take the risk?

Get them to check the cam sensor too.

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Dropped car off at lunchtime, Mechanic said it might be duff sensor so he was ordering one to be on safe side.

Hopefully i'll get it back tomorrow, i'll update thread as and when, thanks for the replies guys. :)

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Did he actually test it or is this a guess it is entirely possible sensor gone but odds this happen same day u get ur belt done odds on something they did are u payin for new sensor

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Collected car this afternoon, this is what the senior mechanic said.......'We had to get hold of a special tool to reset the timing, we decided not to reset the engine light until we re-timed the engine. We re-timed engine and engine light went out by itself, last time WE had to reset the engine light'

so far everything seems normal, hopefully that's cured it. :)

Next expense is Thursday morning when i get my new Goodyear's fitted! ;)

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i had to reset one for another garage a while ago..

the garage bible actually clearly states use of locking tools, but, unusually, on this engine, also suggests marking pulleys with paint to assist in timing...the garage i reset the timing for, took this to mean they could just use the paint marks to time it...sounds like your garage fell into that trap

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Cheers guys, i'll probably be driving over to Wales one day next week (weather permitting) so it should get a good 200 miles or so extra to clock up, if i have no further issues this week (only doing short low mileage trips) and next week goes well then i'll be happy.

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