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the dark lord

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I've decided to give up lurking and start posting as I have a bit of an issue with my Focus 1.6 TDCI. 109. The car is a 08 plate, one of the few facelifts on the 08 plate. The engine has done around 170k and been with me for six years.

The engine has had a replacement turbo prior to my ownership along with the new type feed pipe. The core was replaced again around 20k ago following the tip of a glowplug breaking off and damaging the turbine. 

The car is serviced annually usually 6-8k (used mostly for occasional long runs). Recently I noticed the car seemed to be lacking a _bit_ of power and top end revs - not usually where I get to, it felt and seemed a a blocked fuel filter, so I changed that, but to no avail. While I was at it I changed the air filter, and oil.

We then went on holiday to central France. The car was heavily loaded, but never the less was fine for the first 700miles.Then it suddenly developed low power. It feels like there is no boost, the car pulls away normally but at 1700 rpm where the boost comes in there is nothing.
The car tops out at about 80mph at the moment (loaded) and we staggered over some of the M1 hills at around 50mph.

I have checked the air filter, and inlet piping to the turbo, no issues. the turbine appears to spin freely on the induction side at least. No loss of oil/fluids. The car does not noticeably smoke, however there is a smell of diesel in the exhaust. Fuel economy remains normal, or maybe a bit less, commensurate with it being driven around the lack of power.

Driving around you can hear the turbo whistle as it spools up at the usual revs, if anything it is a little quieter. Reving the engine in neutral and again the turbo can be heard to spool up/down. Engine will rev to the governor limit both free and in motion.

The only odd thing is that when coldish in particular, if you rev the engine it will rev to just over 3k revs, then stutter for a second or two, produced a cloud of white diesley smoke before revving to governed max. It will sometimes do it hot and/or under power.

Scanning the ECU shows no codes/pending codes.

I have done probably 1500 miles with the car in this condition. Seemingly with no ill effects or change. There are no hissing noises nor can i see any obvious inlet leaks. (the flexy silicony bit looks fine)

The only other thing that I have changed on the car prior to the problem developing was I fitted a Blanking plate to the EGR (not reprogrammed). I cant be sure if the issue of low power was starting then.

I haven't dismantled anything as yet. Our other car has been off the road with collision damage but now I'm starting to think about sorting the focus. My first thought is of course the Turbo, the power loss feels exactly like a lack of boost and thus the turbo is the first thought. However before I start stripping it off I'm considering the other options such as actuation issue and wastegate issues. 

Can the forum offer any thoughts?

I have access to a moderately well equipped garage and dont mind having the car of the road for a few weeks, Im just a bit time and cash poor at the moment - joys of having a baby!

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The turbo failures weren't caused by the turbo itself. It was usually the injector seals leaking fuel and causing carbon build up in the engine. This would end up in the oil feed line therefore frying your turbo. When you replace the turbo you should check those seals and clean out the sump and replace the turbo feed/return pipes.

At 170k then your injectors seals are probably kaput (if it's the first set).

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i had faced a similar problem in the past on my focus mk2 manual 1.6TDI. The symptom was the engine going into safe mode/ turbo was turned off.

After several checkups we ended up with root case being a cracked tube (the garage guys identified by injecting fume in the tubes).

I hope that this may be also the case for you.


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