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Hi all im Davey, I'm looking for some advice! I bought a 2005 407SE 2.0HDI about two weeks ago. Problem is the evening of the day i bought it I got warning ref:- Presence of water in the diesel fuel filter! I was quick on the phone to the used car dealer i bought the car from and it was arranged that the fuel filter would be changed. I'm still getting the Presence of water in diesel fuel filter. The car has also been to a Peugeot Dealer for a ecu and bis reprogram and had a diagnostic test to which no problems where found! Peugeot dealer said they have no idea why the light is coming on as they said it shouldn't be! This is my first ever diesel car so i'm concerned if i keep driving it, I will be wrecking the engine! Any advice would be greatly appreciated David.
 

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A lot of cars don't have the water in filter sensor so even if they had water in the filter they wouldnt be aware. The issue with having the sensor is that if the sensor is faulty and giving false reports it only serves to worry the driver. If there is indeed water in the fuel filter it is easily drained and if the warning keeps coming back it could be an indication that the tank has water contamination which at wort case could require it being completely drained. On the other hand, there may be no water in the tank and it's a faulty sensor or wiring fault.

The fact that fuel floats on top of water means that any water in the fuel will drop to the bottom of the filter container meaning the injectors get fed with relatively water free fuel up to the point where the water content rises to the level of the output pipe which feeds the high pressure pump resulting in porr running or not running at all.

It's possible that a previous owner only ever putting small amounts of fuel in the tank giving rise to a lrge volume of moisture rich air filling the rest of the tank. Eventually the moisture will condense into water contaminating the low fuel level which will end up in the filter. I'd try running it till the tank was virtually empty then fill the tank till the first pump shutoff then if a high miler, to only ever fill the tank rather than add £10 or £20 at a time. If only doing very low mileage then keep topping it up every couple of weeks.
 

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storeman, jimmymarsbar I really appreciate you taking the time to answer my questions! It was an elderly couple who owned the car before me. In the last four years the cars only covered approx 1k miles looking at the past mot certs. I'll act on your advice i'll run the car to nearly empty then fill the tank to see if that helps. failing that i'll have to get the tank emptied and any sensors and wiring looked at. Many thanks again guys David.
 

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It was an elderly couple who owned the car before me. In the last four years the cars only covered approx 1k miles looking at the past mot certs.
That's not good. Diesels need good long runs. Short shopping trips put undue pressure on the DPF system and dual mass flywheel clutch.

If there's any way you can reject the car, I'd give that some serious consideration.
 

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I agree low miles and diesels is a bad combination they are best suited to high miles and regular use.

Water in fuel sensors are very unreliable and most cars dont even have them anyway its unlikely you do have any real amount of water in your fuel or car would run badly

As storeman says burn the fuel off and refill a small amount of water is normal due to condensation build up filling up on cold and rainy days etc
 

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Thank you Gibbo and reliable406, The used car dealer gave me a six month warranty so i think i'm covered in case of any malfunction. I did report the problem on the first day i had the car and the used car dealer is trying to get to the bottom of it for me. I do cover quite a few miles each day going to and from work so hopping with the advice from storeman it might correct it's self! I'm just worried about any damage being caused to the engine eg rust and a massive repair bill once the warranty ends! Many thanks David
 

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I don't think a rusty engine is a real prospect. If there is a lot of water, the engine would not run. A little water will just turn to steam and do no harm.

On a foggy day, water is taken in with the air and does just that. Some drivers note that the engine actually seems to be more powerful under those conditions - this is because the fuel/air "charge" is cooled by the formation of steam, which improves efficiency. In fact, water injection is a standard method of boosting engines, and was used in some WWII fighters.
 

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The water IF there is any wont cause rust as it also needs air for rust to form and there is no air in the fuel pipes well not normally :)

Most of the fuel system is plastic anyway so little chance of rust water can damage the pump and injectors but it would need enough water to affect running to be a problem.

Ifs far more likely the sensor is telling porkies
 

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That's not good. Diesels need good long runs. Short shopping trips put undue pressure on the DPF system and dual mass flywheel clutch.

If there's any way you can reject the car, I'd give that some serious consideration.
Low miles and modern diesels are bad... but 1k miles over 4 years, I would gamble that. DMF will be fine (How many miles do you drive locally when not on the motorway?).

Also DPF will be pretty clogged but nothing a good blast (RPM over 2000, speed over 50mph) will sort out. 1000 miles is 3 tankfuls of fuel roughly and there's nothing to suggest a forced regen wasn't done or a short trip down the motorway.

When the fuel filter was changed, did the garage drain the fuel from the housing? Diesel floats on top of water. If it still doesn't get rid of the message, it's a water level sensor. Some cars came with those, some didn't.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
IanML thank you for your response i've taken some comfort out of what you said thank you. Thank you again reliable406, I just dont understand why the diagnostic didn't pick up on a faulty sensor or perhaps thats not checked during a test! Gibbo thank you again for you help again, think i said before ive always drove petrol car so this diesel is new ground for me but i'm will to learn just hope it not going to end up in the long run costing a small fortune to fix if it needs DPFs and EGR valves! Thanks again Guys David
 

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BiGK, I drive around 25/30 miles most days and then approx 50 miles motorway each day Monday to Friday! What i have noticed yesterday was a very dry day no rain or dampness the light didn't come on! it rained today and bang the light came on straight away! I'm going to run the car fule tank right down to near empty fill the tank and take it up and down the nearest motorway over the weekend to see if i can get the car to clear it's self. Just hoping for a good dry day and hopefully the light wont come on. Many thanks David
 

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Well finely there with the problem, turns out all the car needed was a sensor for the water in fuel filter warning i was getting. three different Peugeot dealers said my car should be fitted with one but never had it to start with. Peugeot said it was standard for car in colder countries to have them but not here in the UK. There kind of back tracking on themselves but at last with the sensor now fitted and completing the circuit so far so good. I've been driving well over a week and the warning hasn't came back on. I hope im not tempting fate by posting this so hears hoping it stays off. Hope this is of some help to anyone else experiencing the same problem. And a BIG thank you to everyone who kindly took the time to help answer my questions. Many thanks David.
 
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