|Engine: (2.0 Tdi)
||Check the service history to make sure the car is not due an expensive service.
||With the 2.0 TDi powerplant the servicing runs at small (12 months or 10,000/30,000/50,000 miles) and major level (24 months or 20,000/40,000/60,000miles) – the small service is £150.00 at a main dealer and the major service is £265.00 at a main dealer. Also check for the fuel filter and air filter service which are both due on the 2.0 TDi at 40,000 miles at a cost of around £100.00 for both at a main dealer.
||If the car is close to any of the services or then try to negotiate that amount off of the price of the car. If the car is at a main dealer then try to have the service carried out as part of the deal.
||Check the paperwork to see if the cam belt has been changed on schedule. The 1.6 FSI petrol engine requires a cambelt change at 40,000 miles, 2.0TDi is at 95,000 miles or 4 years and 2.0 FSI petrol needs inspecting at 40,000 and changing at 80,000.
||If the cam belt and associated parts (such as water pump and tensioner) have not been changed, and the mileage is over these boundaries, the cam belt is likely to fail soon. Usually the engine has to be replaced or at least re-built after a cam belt failure.
||Ensure that the cam belt is changed before the car is driven anywhere if it is coming close to its interval. Changing the belt will cost £200. It will cost £1,000+ to have the engine repaired if the belt fails.
|Engine: (2.0 TDi)
||Check the mileage and service history to make sure the cambelt service is not due.
||The cambelt must be changed at 95,000 miles or at 4 years.
||If the car has passed 95,000 miles or four years without the cambelt service having been done than there is a chance of it snapping and damage being done to the rest of the engine. If the car is a main dealer insist on the service being done as part of the deal. If not then try to negotiate a reduction of £390.00 off of the price of the car and have the service carried out straight away.
|Engine: (2.0 TDi 140 and 170)
||Check the DPF (Diesel Particulate Filter) warning light on the dash comes on when the car is started and goes off when it’s running. Check carefully that the engine management warning light is not on at the same time as the DPF warning light. Test drive the car and keep the car in 4th gear at about 2500 to 3000 rpm for about 5/10 miles – this should cause the DPF light to go out.
||The DPF is there to remove harmful particulates from the exhaust when the car is running. The DPF is not really suited to small runs and town driving/school runs in particular as the filter does not get hot enough to burn the particulates off and it gets clogged up. Running the car at 2500 rpm for about 5/10 miles in 4th gear should allow the DPF to get hot enough to burn off the particulates clogged up inside. If doing this does not cause the DPF warning light to go out and/or the engine management is on at the same time as the DPF light it means either that the sensors on the DPF need to be replaced or the DPF itself needs to be replaced. If this fault is left unchecked it can cause major damage to the exhaust system.
||If you drive the car at 2500/3000 rpm for 5/10 miles and the DPF warning light goes out then the car should be fine. If either the DPF warning light or engine management warning light stay on (or the car goes into Limp Home mode) then have car inspected by a qualified mechanic before sale.
|Engine: (FR 2.0 petrol Turbo)
||Test drive the car and look for loss of power/sluggishness or a very loud whistling or sound from the top of the engine whilst it is running. All turbos whistle to some degree but you are looking for a very loud, ragged whine. Open the bonnet and listen to the top of the engine whilst it is under power to spot this. The car should feel very strong throughout the rev range. Check carefully for power trailing away after 4000rpm.
||The turbo is blown. This can cost up to £1200.00/£1500.00 at main dealers and £950.00 at a specialist.
||It will be fixed under warranty if the car is less than three years old (last year of warranty has a 60,000 mile limit). If there is any suspicion of the turbo being blown then it would be advisable to have the vehicle professionally inspected at the vendor’s expense. Otherwise try to negotiate at least £1000.00 off of the asking price or have the repair carried out as part of the deal. Make sure the EGR (Exhaust Gas Re-circulation) valve is replaced at the same time. This part can often be the cause of turbo problems on these engines.
|Engine: (FR 2.0 petrol Turbo)
||Check the paperwork to see when the car was last inspected
||The FR needs a yearly inspection irrespective of mileage – this needs to be done by a qualified mechanic.
||Have the car inspected as required.
||The Leon has the option of two servicing programmes - the initial choice of which is up to the first owner but a buyer of a second hand Leon can swap from one to the other. The first option is “LongLife” servicing programme. One this option the servicing is up to 20,000 (petrol) or up to 30,000 miles (diesel). The other servicing option is “Time and Distance” servicing which is every 10,000 miles or every 12 months. If the car has been on "long life" servicing then it is crucial to check the the factory specifications for oil have been maintained.
||Check the mileage/servicing option to make sure there is no service due. Be aware that the “LongLife” servicing is mainly for high mileage users and the “Time and Distance” for lower mileage users. This can give an indication as to how the car has been used. It is crucial that the correct oil has been used because the sensor for the service indicator uses engine oil to dertermine when a service is due. The wrong oil can cause that sensor to malfunction.
||If there is a service due then negotiate £150.00/250.00 off of the price unless the car is on “LongLife” servicing and close to 60,000 miles – in this case try to bring the price down by £600.