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Thread: Ford Focus 2006 1.8 TDCI Filling Engine Oil

  1. #1
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    Default Ford Focus 2006 1.8 TDCI Filling Engine Oil

    Having had my vehicle's 2nd year service done, the oil was clearly overfilled. It was taken back to have the excess drained off last week, along with some other electrical problems. Got the vehicle back today, had a look at it in front of the service manager and yet again the oil had been overfilled. He fobbed me off with some story about a 'faulty dipstick' . So they drained it off, and filled up again, took them about 10 minutes!!! They invited me over to inspect the level. It wasn't overfilled this time but was bang on the max mark. I asked them to drop it to the middle of the markers, and they refused to as they were adamant that this is the correct level (according to ford)! So i argued away, and they all looked so shocked that you are supposed to fill it up to the middle of the dipstick, its not a bloody kettle for heavens sake Im just wondering, are ford dealers told to fill to the max mark or is there something im missing out on here?

  2. #2
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    There are two ways to look at this-every garage I have worked in has always topped engine oil to the 'MAX' marking but if you look at it like this-you have a 'MAX' and 'MIN' so halfway is OK (personally I always top up to the max mark) but it would be prudent to check your engine oil level more frequently if you have the level in the middle as all engines especially modern power units will 'use' some oil.............

  3. #3
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    I may just be getting old, but I have always serviced my vehicle myself as they were land rovers, and my father (this is going back a while) had a pit in his garage so he serviced his car there. We always filled the engine oil to the middle, which was often labeled as 'N' presumably to mean normal, they had like the ford a min and max mark. The manuals for the vehicles specified to fill it to the 'N' mark, the ford manual doesn't go this far, although it illustrates the level in the middle. It seems a bit silly to a simpleton like myself that the oil is filled to the max as it doesn't allow for any tolerance either way, where as with the middle you get this benefit. Also surely by having more oil in the sump, you are encouraging an increased burn of oil, you are also increasing the resistance in the engine = less fuel economy. I may be slightly biased for this point, but the engine does feel rougher than it did before, when the oil was at the middle, the oil is supposedly the same btw. The oil burn in the focus compared to the land rover is absolutely nothing as well, i do roughly 13000 miles a year and it does stay at the middle in all fairness.

  4. #4
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    I read recently that in a survey done on car servicing that something like 8 out of 10 cars serviced at main dealers had been overfilled with oil.

    Overfilling can be a serious problem as the oil can be 'whipped' by the crank causing it to foam with air bubbles in it and reducing oil pressure within the lubrication system.

    Some Toyota's will flash the oil light if they are overfilled.

  5. #5
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    From what ive seen today, it really doesn't surprise me. They were absolute monkeys, thick does not describe them adequately. With regards to that foaming, it can be more serious than that i believe. When the oil is saturated with air in this manor, it deprives the engine of lubrication (reduced oil pressure as you said) -> increased friction -> enormous heat = fire!! The other scenario, related to the whipping of the oil IIRC is that copious amounts of oil combust with the diesel at an uncontrollable rate = total loss of control. Although i suspect that this is loosely related to the fire issue mentioned previously. Also ive heard that if a catalytic converter were fitted, it would destroy that potentially.

    It seems so simple to me, check the flipping dipstick before you hand back to the customer!!! This 'service manager' i spoke to today, say that they don't do this, because they have a set amount to fill, which is measured with their calibrated instruments. Well something went wrong there clearly. I think i may go Japanese next time anyway

  6. #6
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    a lot of garages nowadays have oil dispensers with a calibrated digital read out built in to the nozzle so regardless of what the dipstick is at, the technician should have dispensed the correct quantity of oil in a much more accurate manner, ie a published fill quantity from the vehicle manufacturer.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by col4374 View Post
    a lot of garages nowadays have oil dispensers with a calibrated digital read out built in to the nozzle so regardless of what the dipstick is at, the technician should have dispensed the correct quantity of oil in a much more accurate manner, ie a published fill quantity from the vehicle manufacturer.
    Depends on how much of the old oil was left in the engine before refilling really doesn't it ? That's something that cannot be accurately calculated as it depends on oil temperature and the length of time it was left to drain for.

  8. #8
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    Wink

    Good point although it would be nice to think that a technician would leave a warm engine to empty of oil while carrying out other parts of the inspection (or drinking tea )

  9. #9
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    The dealership I worked in changed to these metered dispensers-but I can't believe the technician would not physically check the level-rather than fill the engine,start it up,drive it out

  10. #10
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    Personally, I always bulk fill the cars to about 250ml less than specified then do the rest using the dipstick and allow a sensible time for settling in between topping up and dipping the stick. However, I do realise that it would take too long for a dealership to do it this way.

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