14th Apr 2018, 09:28
Hi everyone, today I've learned a lesson. I've found out that the 12 volt relays you get from any auto shop (the 30 amp type) have the plus and minus on different pins to the 12 volt relays in the large fuse box in my XC. When I put in the relay I've bought, it wouldn't work; I've since tested the terminals and found the Barina relay is completely different to the auto shop relay, so this is Holden's way of making money out of you. YOU HAVE TO BUY THEIR relay. Also if your XC seems to have less power and uses more fuel like mine, my problem was the cat converter had fallen apart and restricted the exhaust. I looked up eBay and found one for $400, so shop around.
25th May 2018, 10:19
Hi everyone, me again. Found when going up a very steep hill, the car would pull back. I think it was the knock sensor picking up engine noise, because the oil would thin out, allowing tappet noise which the knock sensor picked up, and I think it retarded the ignition too much etc and so forth; eventually the engine goes into limp mode half way up this long steep hill.
I've looked at the repair manual etc (YouTube) and there's a part on oils with zinc added to it now for (Opel) flat engine tappets, plus it gives improved oil pressure and quietens the noises (Penrite oils + Zinc added). Yes it's costly, but now my little Barina flies up this same hill, and it does feel better on the highway.
Penrite also makes an "All fuel cleaner that cleans from the tank all the way through to the cat converter" (super strength). Wouldn't hurt to use it; at least the injectors will have a good clean up.
Also I took some time to clean my throttle body. I was surprised at how easy it was to remove it from the inlet manifold and just spray it with a cleaner, especially the underside of the butterfly flap; it was caked with carbon. Now I've got a smooth idle.
Another note is when the radiator fan cuts in, my idle seems to bounce around then smooth out when it cuts off, not adjusting for load, I could be wrong, but I think the knock sensor may be too touchy picking up noise; suspect it's on its way out, will replace it with another? Will let you know if that is a fix.
1st Sep 2018, 11:25
I have an interesting (read beat head into wall frustrating) problem with #1 son's 2003 XC 1.4 SXI.
We bought it for him about 4 years ago with about 63K on the clock. It is now up around 140K km.
In this time a couple of things have gone wrong, but it has been pretty reliable. At one time it was playing up and it turned out to be the connector on the back of the instrument panel, so I soldered the harness into the back of the panel and attached it into the main harness with a good quality connector. This is when I got the op-com.
The other day he was driving to uni and stopped to put fuel in. Approximately 1km later the car started shuddering and refused to go any further. He called up and I towed him home. After he told me what happened, I put 2 and 2 together and came up with the obvious solution of dodgy fuel. So I drained the tank and mopped it out. The fuel lines and injector rail were drained and the fuel filter replaced. 20L of 95v later and I was off on the test drive. When I got to approximately 40km/h the car started shuddering as if it was in limp mode. Additionally it wouldn’t rev much over 3K. There were no spanners or warning lights on the instrument panel.
I put my head to the fuel tank and couldn’t hear anything so I checked that voltage was going to the pump connector. With voltage there I thought… maybe the pump is buggered. So off to Repco and an hour later a new pump was installed. This time I could definitely hear a hum from the tank, so I confidently set off on the next test drive. The problem was that there was no change; the car still seemed to be in limp mode with no spanners or warning lights on the instrument panel.
I then connected the op-com and there were no error codes. I took it for a drive and recorded the measured parameters. They all seemed normal and most importantly the ECU was actually reporting that it WAS NOT in limp mode.
I then removed the throttle body and found that the small port (to the rocker cover) was blocked. I cleaned this out but there was no improvement. I also checked the spark plugs (he has had a cracked one before) and while I had them out checked for coolant in the cylinders (head gasket). Additionally there is no excessive coolant being used or coolant in the oil.
A little while ago I purchased a bunch of spare sensors and bits and pieces at a $50 all you can carry day at a wrecker. I made sure to get them out of an accident damaged car to maximise the chance that the components were working (after all the cars were obviously going at the time of their accidents).
So, changing one component at a time I have changed out the oil pressure sensor, coil pack and a full set of injectors on a new rail. I have also removed the top cover for the timing belt and verified that it was smack bang on and hadn’t jumped a tooth. (a couple of years ago he did a head gasket and I replaced the timing belt and water pump while I was there as it was nearly due.) I also knocked up a blanking plate and put it under the EGR valve, but this made no difference. When I refitted the coil pack I made sure to stretch the springs out a bit to ensure that they were making good contact with the spark plugs (the design seems to be a bit of a dodgy set-up itself).
After each drive it has been the same, acting as if is in limp mode without the associated lamps bells and whistles.
I don’t think it is a blocked cat as the pre (replaced late last year when it stuffed out) and post O2 sensors seem to be giving valid outputs on op-com.
Tomorrow I will check out the temp sensor (in the duct between the air filter and throttle body) and the accelerator circuit on the throttle body.
So, after all of this, does anyone out there have any ideas please?