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Old 10-19-2012, 08:21 PM   #1
biederboat
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Is my engine "seized"

I started a "starter" thread (as in engine starter) as I thought that's what the issue was but now I'm sure it's not. If you want to visit that thread, here it is but I really don't think there's any valuable info there: http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=299926

So basically I have a situation where a previous and a new starter (along with a tested battery and new cables) are not turning the engine over fast enough (sounds slow). So I took out the spark plugs, disconnected the drive belt and put a breaker bar/socket over the front crank pulley. It's feels "restrained". No obvious grinding noise but I would think with the plugs out, drive belt off and 230K miles the engine would turn easily by hand but it really doesn't. It has easier and harder spots but at no point can you turn it easily with one hand on the pulley. Also, with the breaker bar on it, it doesn't feel smooth (feels ok when turning by hand though). The plugs and oil look fine.

I tried all the driven accessories (pumps, alternator, etc.) and they all spin just fine.

Any thoughts?

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Old 10-19-2012, 08:55 PM   #2
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if you can spin it its not completely seized... there could still be something wrong with it though.

I think you need to check the voltage drop on your battery cables.
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Old 10-19-2012, 09:45 PM   #3
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Sounds like a spun bearing.
Drain the oil and look for metallic bits.
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Old 10-20-2012, 03:36 AM   #4
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I disagree, probably nothing wrong with it.

Unless there is a positive reason (ran out of oil, abuse of engine, etc.)........if motor last ran all right then not motor.
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Old 10-21-2012, 05:41 PM   #5
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Hey guys, sorry for the late response, I forgot to "subscribe" and assumed no one had responded, shame on me.

So here's where I'm at (or rather the car's at): Bad timing belt (that's at least part of the trouble). Earlier, I'm sure I pulled the top cover back to make sure it was turning but, in any case, it's not now. Had a lot of miles and I was hesitating whether or not to drop the $600-700 or just get rid of the sucker. Not really any worries here, I totally got my use out of this car.

The only thing I'm wondering is if it might be ecomonically repairable. As it's a DOHC, I understand these are "clearance" designs. Also, near as I can tell, the failure happened either while turning off or attemping to restart. I've heard of other cases similar to this where they lucked out. Any comments? I'll do some searching as well.

Taking delivery of a long overdue 2013 SE Hatchback, perf blue, stick, leather, moonroof, yee haa!!!

Thanks,
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Old 10-21-2012, 05:48 PM   #6
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Update: Here's what my search came up with: http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/s...en+timing+belt

Is everything here still current? After writing my previous post, I am wondering if the belt broke maybe because the engine has seized. Any thoughts? What would turning an engine that had otherwise good compression but a broken belt be like? Some valves open, some closed, would it be alternately hard to crank and then easy to crank? That's what it sort of feels like when cranking by hand. Even when turning with the starter it would seems to spin at normal speeds for brief instances.

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Old 10-21-2012, 06:22 PM   #7
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If you still have the spark plugs installed, then the engine will have hard and easy places when cranking by hand whether the timing belt is intact or not. If you can turn it at all by hand, then it's ok. If you had bearing damage, it would not turn by hand easily. You'd have to put hundreds of pounds of pressure on a breaker bar to get it to move- if at all.
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Old 10-21-2012, 06:25 PM   #8
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Yes, the Zetec is a non-interference engine, no valve damage unless the cams were changed out. Now with over 200k miles.... there could simply old engine damage from use.
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Old 10-21-2012, 09:28 PM   #9
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Thanks guys. As I forgot to subscribe (thinking no one had responded) I posted my dilemma on another forum I use and a guy chimed in to say "just throw a cheap timing belt on it" and see what happens. That sounds like a good approach. I haven't done one of these but I've done just about everything else with this car and many others so not afraid to tackle another repair when there's only the possibility of salvaging something that was considered to be "Pick N Pull" raw material.

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Old 10-21-2012, 09:44 PM   #10
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Make sure the two timing belt idlers are not seized up.
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