Focus 1.8TDCi Wet Belt Failure / Engine Rebuild Help - Mechanical (Mk2 Focus) -

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Focus 1.8TDCi Wet Belt Failure / Engine Rebuild Help

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#1 Focused1991


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  • Vehicle Driven:Focus 2008 1.8TDCi
  • Name:JB
  • Location:UK

Posted 22 January 2021 - 12:38 PM


I recently had the wet belt on my 1.8TDCi fail with sheared teeth and I'm currently in the process of fixing it. The work is made a little more difficult as it's outside in rainy Wales.

Basically, I removed all the engine ancillaries and got the head off. The cam shaft is fine, but the valves are smashed. Sadly, it became apparent that a couple of the pistons are cracked also, so I'm waiting on delivery on an engine crane so that I can whip the block out and take it indoors for a rebuild.

The car is 2008, 175k miles (wet belt did good!) so I'm keen to just get it running again to last me out a few more years. Therefore I'm rebuilding on a budget and will try not to replace anything unless I absolutely have to. I would rather not shell out for another vehicle as the rest of this car is in great nick, and replacement engines aren't that cheap either, but I'm keen to see how cheap I can get this thing going for. A bit of a lockdown project, I guess!

I know the new valves will need grinding into the head, and I'll be getting new valve seals etc. I'm impressed how much cash even just the numerous gaskets are going to rack up to!

There's a few things I'm uncertain on however:

1. Does anyone have a guide for setting the timing on this engine for both the wet belt AND upper belt? I have a timing kit, but have heard the Fuel Pump on the wet belt needs timing set too so want to make sure I do it right.

2. Can bolts from the cylinder head, con rods, big end bearings and flywheel be reused on this vehicle? What about the big end bearings and piston rings etc themselves if fitting second hand rods/pistons?

3. For the wet belt replacement, I can't seem to be able to find a belt online without the replacement pulleys and cassette. Looking at them, I'd assume those bits could be reused?

4. When splitting the sump from the block the transmission end crank seal needs to be released. Is this reusable? I'll replace the pulley end seal in any case.

5. Anyone have any tips for Dual Mass Flywheel inspection whilst I've got the engine out? I'd like to feel confident it'll keep going long enough if I don't replace it. As I've said, I'm on a budget!

Thanks in advance!




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Posted 22 January 2021 - 01:05 PM

I think its going to be far cheaper to put another engine into it. By the time you buy new pistons

and rings and the gasket sets etc. Its going to add up.


Get a used engine or a crashed car and break it to reclaim some money. Stick a new belt

on whilst its out of the car and its going to be good for many years more.


If its hit the pistons hard enough to crack them i would treat the whole block with

suspicion. Damaged the crank or bent the rods at the very least.


After 12 years those plastic parts may start to become brittle, you dont want to throw hundreds

into an engine rebuild for the carrier to break and wreck the 2nd engine.


2008 Focus starting at less than £1000 on autotrader and some on ebay selling for £400

with issues. One sold a few months back with electrical/ABS issues. Ideal donor if it ran



Rebuilding engines on the cheap is really hit and miss..  You may waste hundreds that

you could stick in a new engine or another car.



Swapping pistons and rings it really time consuming, you need to check the ring gaps

and after that mileage may find they are less than perfect and in a new bore they

wont play nice.

MK4.5 TDCI 140 Business Estate.



Adding your location may find someone local who could offer assistance.

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