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Turbo chewed up and spat out!
Oh dear. Having bought a 2008 mk2 with a full service history (albeit also with relatively high mileage) I had hoped we'd be safe from the dreaded turbo failure which the 1.6HDi engine seems prone to. But on Thursday, it went bang while my other half was driving it around Kent, 200 miles from home. It came back on an RAC truck and our local garage want the thick end of two grand to fix it.
This is clearly not going to happen. I've decided the simplest way to fix it will be to junk the 1.6 engine completely and fit something like the 1.9 TD from a Peugeot 306, or (in my wilder fantasies) the 3 litre V6 from a 406. However, I'm not by any stretch of the imagination a fabricator, and I can barely string a bead of MIG welding together, so anything that requires chopping the engine bay about and making new mounts is out. From what I've read, the 306 engine will drop straight in,complete with its gearbox. Does anyone know if that's true? And does anyone have any other suggestions for engines which will turn this into something which is far faster than it looks? Or should I just stick with the XUD9 engine and keep the thing as an economical runabout?
difficult one - i suspect the electrics will not marry up with any other engine than the one specked. So the mechanical conversion may be ok to do but it will no be your answer if the electronics are not compatible.

May be a second hand 1.6 engine may be the way forward?
Does it just need a new turbo ? There are remanufactured ones on ebay for under £300 and you could fit it yourself easier than finding and fitting an engine and gearbox.
So where does this bit go then ?
Get a re-con turbo, don't bother with a repair kit off ebay I suspect that they don't work, you are looking at about £360 for a proper re-con one. The turbo is at the front of the engine and couldn't be easier to get to so there's no excuse for not doing it yourself. As you are aware of the oil feed issue you will know that you need to replace or clean the turbo oil feed pipe and in an ideal world you would drop the sump and check for sludge.
Turbos don't last for ever and it may have died of natrual causes, but with the 1.6hdi they do have a reputation for sludging up the oil feed. I suspect this is caused or compounded by failed injector seals allowing combustion fumes to contaminate the oil due to blow-by.
I wouldn't bother with a 1.9 conversion because they are slower than a slow thing and you may have trouble insuring it if an insurance company considers it modified.
I had considered simply replacing the turbo, but I'm a bit put off by tales of replacement turbos being killed by slightly mucky oil, or blocked pipes. I'm happy enough to drop the sump and clean it, and replace the oil feed pipe; presumably I'd also need to flush the engine out a couple of times and drop and replace the oil and filter? I don't want the thing to go again 500 miles down the road! I have to say, I could do without having to buy myself an engine crane and deal with possibly incompatible electrics and uncooperative insurance companies and everything else that goes with a modified vehicle.

Mind you, this thread makes interesting reading ... Especially the bit in the official PSA instructions to garages, which states that "Even after all the above has been carried out we cannot guarantee all carbon/oil sludge will be removed and you could still suffer a premature turbo failure" and "We would also like to assure you that this is the only engine we have experienced these failure rates with." Reading around the internet, it seems that the 1.6 engine is ridiculously sensitive to the condition of its oil. Quite a big part of me really would prefer to junk it, even if that did mean fitting the slower, noisier and less economical 1.9 NA unit. At least there would be a fighting chance I'd still be mobile a thousand miles down the road.
There are lots of 1.6hdi powered vans around running on their original turbo with high mileage on the odometer. It seems to be the filter in the turbo oil feed that blocks up and if it is removed and oil changed regularly it should cure the problem. Here is a remanufactured turbo with a 12 month warranty for less than £360, not a repair kit for your broken one.
So where does this bit go then ?
Ffrenchie, my post was not a pop at your suggestion, I should have been more specific and was referring to the replacement cores that are advertised on fleabay.
Rytham Thief, I would suggest that a new turbo has to be the simplest and quite possibly the cheapest solution. Before you spend anything you can drop the sump and inspect the state of the oil pick-up and the oil feed and see what state they are in. I think the horror stories of early failure of replacements are due to people either not checking to see what was the cause of the turbo failure and /or not understanding why the oil has become contaminated.
The 1.6hdi is a nice engine (never thought I would say that) it is modern, light and high-tec. It is fitted to Ford Focus, Mini, some Volvos and of course loads of Pugs and Citroens. There are lots of horror stories because there are millions of them out there.
Ok, tomorrow's job (if I get out of bed in time) will be to drain the oil, pull the sump off and have a look at the oil pickup gauze and the general state of the internals. Thanks for the advice, particularly the link to the remanufactured turbo.

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