Buying van, checking for water ingress in engine (1 Viewer)

Lbj

Sep 16, 2018
49
91
Gatehouse of Fleet, Castle Douglas, UK
Funster No
56,239
MH
Sunlight Cliff 540
Exp
Few years
Having decided to pull out of buying a van that developed an engine fault apparently due to ice on the cam belt, I am going to look at another one, also a Ducato base. I have been reading all the threads about water ingress in Ducato engines now that I know first hand this is an issue! My question is what should I look for to check for this. I understand it can happen without the owner being aware of a potential problem and I am not suggesting foul play on the part of the dealer, I just want to go prepared with as much knowledge as possible.

it is a Sunlight Cliff 540, 2018 2 litre, 11,500 miles. I’ve checked the registration and it looks like 2 owners, the last had it for a year and did 7,000 miles (trading up for a large van). It passed all MOTs with no advisories, serviced annually with full service history and the dealer is changing the cam belt. It will be my only vehicle so used all the time. Any guidance gratefully received.
 
Dec 18, 2014
122
82
London
Funster No
34,515
MH
Elddis 185
Exp
since 2010
Fiat, Peugeot etc all had a modification by way of a plastic panel that was fitted above the engine to divert water away from the injectors on the engine. They also had a redesign of the external scuttle with the addition of a central drain pipe i between the windscreen wipers Again to help with drainage of rain etc.
Water should be diverted away much more than the earlier x250 models, that’s assuming they drain holes were not blocked with leaves etc.
 
OP
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Lbj

Lbj

Sep 16, 2018
49
91
Gatehouse of Fleet, Castle Douglas, UK
Funster No
56,239
MH
Sunlight Cliff 540
Exp
Few years
Thanks Basa, so the plastic cover would have to be removed in order to check the engine? This is still a known fault with the newer engines despite the plastic covering.

is it just blocked drain holes that causes the water ingress? Or is that a naive question?! I’ve watched IRHP’s video showing what happens when a drain hole is blocked on a 2021 van.
 
Dec 18, 2014
122
82
London
Funster No
34,515
MH
Elddis 185
Exp
since 2010
I think the scuttle seal below the windscreen on the x290 models has been modified but look at the left/right hand corner of the scuttle and there is a rubber seal that gets pretty gunged up, I regularly clean this and check all drainage holes for leaves etc

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Feb 19, 2020
1,451
1,606
North Ayrshire
Funster No
68,864
MH
Adria Matrix 670SC
Exp
Newbie
I think if you remove the plastic cover and there's and signs of brown rust around the base of the injectors then it may have had some water lying there. It doesn't necessarily mean there will be a problem but it could mean that the injectors could be difficult to remove but how many of us have had to remove injectors?
 
Jan 22, 2019
730
3,542
Bucks
Funster No
58,167
MH
Adria PVC
Exp
Rented a few times...now an owner.
I can confirm the plastic cover doesn't solve the problem .... if the vent holes in the scuttle are blocked, you can still get water around the injectors.

Its a very simple job to unclip the hose to the side and prise the cover off and see what it looks like - as its a 2018 I'd be surprised if its very bad but worth a quick look
 
Feb 28, 2023
47
29
Newcastle-under-Lyme, UK
Funster No
94,307
MH
Autotrail Savannah
Exp
I'm a relative Newbie
There are a few references to this problem on good old YouTube. One points to the water on the windscreen running under the lower plastic surround into the engine bay. Another reports the main rubber drain pipe running across the top of the engine, leaking at its join eventually caused by debris building up and blocking the outlet in the wheel arch. All the leaks refer to the water entering the injector gallery and sitting there causing extensive rusting of the injectors at their base. Regular checking of the rain channel vents is a must, especially the one under the O/S wiper shaft which is very difficult to access with the panel in place. It does seem that the engine shield doesn't do it's job. One guy sprayed his injectors with copper slip to at least try and give a barrier from the water. The problem is all the more intense with the limited use of the vehicle, when used as a daily van the heat from the engine would hopefully evaporate any water before it had chance to settle.
 
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