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Timing chain issue


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Hi All I have a 2013 2.0 Ecoboost Automatic Petrol S-Max. I bought it about 3 years ago in lock down and have had problems with it. About a year after I bought it the Transmission failed when I was going up a hill in Wales and transmission fluid was leaking out which meant I had to get a new clutch and gearbox which cost me about £3k. Around a year later the drive shaft on the drivers side went and had to be replaced and then this year around April time my wife was driving it on the motorway and the vacuum pump went so the brakes were really stiff so she had to be towed home. I got this replaced by my local garage and then a few days later it went again and the garage agreed to put a new one in but said there were engine problems with it as there were metal bits in the engine due to a problem with the "wet belt" and I basically needed to get rid of it as soon as possible. 

I didn't find this garage helpful as they had replaced the vacuum pump and it had then failed so I contacted a local ford specialist for some advice. He informed me that my car has a timing chain and doesn't have a "wet belt" and agreed to look at it for me. After doing a diagnostic test he told me that there was a timing chain issue due to the synchronisation between the camshaft and crankshaft and that he would not be able to give me a cost of the repair until he had stripped the engine and then I would need to pay for labour and parts to put it back together but we would be looking at a few thousand pounds. I have therefore been looking at selling it on for someone else to do the work but I am looking at quite a financial loss from what i paid for it.

This is the first Ford I have owned and I have been surprised by the number of problems it has had although it has done 116k miles now. Has anyone else had any similar problems with their S-Max and were you able to resolve these? Do you have any idea what the problem might be? I have had one person interested in buying it but he thinks it will need a new engine and so is trying to knock down the price I am trying to sell it for due to this.

Apologies for the long post but I thought if I give you the full picture you may be able to link different things together. Any help or advice would be really appreciated.

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While I'd never suggest modern Fords to be the pinnacle of reliability, you do seem to have been extra unlucky with this one. :sad: 

The Ford dealer is correct, this engine uses two chains, one for the camshafts, and another for the oil pump.  No wetbelt on these.

If metal shards have been seen in the oil then there is some major internal fault.  But it's not clear in your post whether that's just one persons 'suggestion' or whether that's actually been confirmed?

Cam and crank sync could be caused by reduced oil pressure as the timing chain tensioner is hydraulic.  But if the chain was loose you'd hear it rattling.  It's also possible that one of the VVT solenoids is faulty and not advancing the cam timing as it should.

Could you confirm what faults are noticeably present on the car right now?  And any fault codes that have been triggered?

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Thank you for getting back to me. My local garage mentioned to me when they fitted the vacuum pump againn that they thought there were metal shards in the engine when they told me to get rid of it ASAP but as they had told me that it had a wet belt which wasn't right I disregarded this information at the time so it hasn't been confirmed. I forgot to mention that the Ford Specialist mentioned that the tensioner may need changing as well as the timing chain but until he strips the engine he doesn't know what needs changing so it is a bit of a Pandora box. 

I can confirm that when I drove it to the Specialist it did start to make a rattling noise and when it starts now you can hear this although it is not very loud so I think this is the timing chain but haven't driven it much since the fault was identified and it is currently on a SORN. Unfortunately I can't confirm any fault codes as I didn't write this down at the time when I spoke to the Specialist on the phone and they mentioned the one that came up was one related to sync between cam and crankshaft. 

Thank you for your response Tomsfocus and sorry i cant give any further information. Has anyone else had similar problems and were they able to resolve it?

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