So, this is my Blog, my thoughts / feelings / ideas. You may comment if you like. If you attack me, I come back at you with reckless / racist / suicidal abandon. If you compliment me, I thank you. If you don't ever visit again I don't care. Other than that, just enjoy what I write, or not.

LIU - Look It Up!


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

LuckyL's car

So, in a previous post I mentioned the problems we have had with LuckyLs car.
Here is a brief synopsis of events:-

The car was running fine. No problems at all, apart from a sticky starter every now and then. As he was traveling to the coast with 3 friends for their matric year end, I decided to do some preventative maintenance. Two new tyres on the front. Then, send it to the mechanic for a starter service (better than waiting for it to break) and while it's there, an oil change service - at 148000 km it's due anyway. We also booked it for a tow bar fitting for the following Tuesday as they were taking the trailer down with them.
Get the car back from the mechanic, and the shit starts. The "spanner" warning light comes on, as does the "anti-skid" light, which, when activated mean there is something wrong, so the car goes into limp mode - maximum speed is reduced to around 80kmh, and rev's limited to 4000rpm.

Take the car back to the shop. They put it onto the computer, and error P0340 comes up - "Cam belt tension sensor faulty". Yea right. This is Saturday morning. I call all the Opel dealers. Cost R 2200 - availability maybe 3 - 4 days from ordering. RIGHT!!! I go online, call around and find a place in Pretoria Opel A.S.A.P., they have stock, original parts, R1300. What time do you close? 12.30 - OK, it's 11.30, see u in a few..... And off we go. Thanks to the Garmin we drove straight there, and found what we needed.

Monday morning, deliver said part to the mechanic. A few hours later he calls, same fault. Yea right - I collect the car - Tuesday we take it for the tow bar, thereafter back to the mechanic. Now we are running out of time. Crank sensor is removed and checked. Fine. Wheel sensors checked, one has moved and wires have rubbed through onto the brake disk. Remove - repair - refit.  CV sensors checked. Fine. And still the light comes on. By Wednesday afternoon I was getting desperate - LuckyL and his mates were to leave Thursday morning at 5 am. The mechanic says, it must be the cam belt, and tensioner. Liik in the service book - yup, this was supposed to be replaced at the 150000km service - so maybe thats it. Phone around. Everyone is closed.
Thursday morning early, drop LuckyL off at the mechanic, and I go to work. Plan is that as soon as the car is ready, he leaves, picks up his mates, and drives to the coast.
By 12.30 am, it was obvious that the problem was not resolved. Cam belt and tensioner replaced, and still we had the same error. So I tell him to drive home, call the Princess, and take her car. As it is they are 6 hours + late in leaving, and with the roads busy, and rain predicte, they would be arriving after dark.
So he does, and he goes. In the meantime the mechanic has a chat with the Opel workshop supervisor about the proble, and he says thay had something similar recently. Seems that the computer got confused, and would not reset and kept showing the same error. So thay disconnected the battery, and the computer, left it for 24 hours, reconnectd everything, and the car was fine.
Ok, so I will try that.

The Princess goes to work with LuckyL's car Friday morning. When she left, the warning light was off!! That afternoon when she leaves the office - same! Great. She stops at the shop on the way home, is inside for maybe 10 minutes, comes out, starts the car and the fucking warning lights are back!?!?!?!?!?

Friday night, I disconnect the batter and computer. Saturday afternoon, 20 or so hours later, I reconnect everything. Start the car - no warning lights!!! I drive 1 km to the filling station. Switch off. Fill up. Start the car - no warning lights!!!!!!! Drive to the bottle store - 6 km - and I push th car - I have a feeling about this now. Stop, go in, buy some stuff, come out - maybe 6 - 7 minutes, get in - start the car - warning lights are back on. Drive to the club, go in for 30-40  minutes, go back out, start the car - warning lights off! Thats it then, the lights only seem to come on when the car is started when hot, not when it's cold / been standing long enough to cool down. - Did it again a few times on Sunday when the Princess to the car to work.

I relay this information to the mechanic, and drive the car down to him Monday morning. Leave the car there and ask him to please get it sorted by the end of the week. I need this car to be ready for us to go to the coast with. Even   if he has to take it to the Opel dealers.

At 4.30pm, I have not heard anything yet. Princess asks if I have called him yet, and I say no, figure if he had news he would have called me. Will wait for Tuesday. 5.40pm, he calls.  Says "Come fetch this piece of shit!" "Why", I respond, "I don't want it, you keep it!". Anyway, he says the car is fixed, I can come fetch it. So me and the Princess drive through and she drops me off and goes back home to prepare dinner. I chat with the mechanic.

So, at some point he was sitting int the car, with his other mechanic under the hood. He would turn the key to start while the other guy would wiggle wires, and plug points, and stuff, to see if it was a faulty wire / connection, which was making and breaking. At some point the dude under the hood decided to wiggle the computer, and nearly burned his hand off!!! So he grabs a cloth, wets it, and uses this to hold the computer so he can wiggle it. AND THE FUCKING WARNING LIGHTS GO OFF!!!!! Lets' go, and they come back on, each time as the car is started of course.

Put the wet cloth back - off, take it away - on!!!!
So they loosen the computer plate from it's mounting, and move it away from where THE STUPID FUCKING GERMAN DESIGNERS DECIDED THE BEST PLACE TO MOUNT IT IS AGAINST THE ENGINE as opposed to the firewall or wheel arch as pee the Chinese / Koren / Japanese designers!!!!!

Takwe the car for a run. Get it hot. Switch off. Start it, no warning lights, off, / on, off / on..... lights are forever gone.

So, back at the workshop the make a heat displacement plate. Metal plate wrapped with double layer of asbestos cloth, and mounted between the computer box and the engine, and the problem is solved. Seems that, coincidentally it happened at this time, the heat resistant materials inside the computer (ECU) box is breaking down, and coupled with the engine heat, and increased temperature of the climate, the hot environment is causing the ECU to give out a warning. Fetched the car, took it home, ran it ragged, start / stop on and on - no problem.

So, after spending a lot more money than I planned to, and LuckyL having to take the Princess's car on holiday, and now us having to take LuckyL's car on holiday, it's all sorted. But who do I have to thank for the trouble? Those stupid moronic German Designers that decided to save 75c (US) on a shorter harness, and monted th ECU on the side of the engine!!



A Daft Scots Lass said...

Fucking German bastids!

Wreckless Euroafrican said...

Yup, no wonder they keep losing the wars - they just don't think past their noses.....

Divemaster GranDad said...

I had a similar problem with my old Ou Piel...but they could never find the problem and I got rid of the car shortly after it started, so I didn't give a fuck anyway.........just saying...