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post #44 of (permalink) Old 22nd October 2014
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Re: Renault - Clio - Mk 2 - Not running properly

Well, I swapped my 8v for a Picasso for my wife, a three-door Clio is a pig when you have two young children and a new baby to cart about. I inherited her 16v Sport.

I got the Sport through its MOT at the start of this month (after fixing brakes and exhaust all it needed was 38p of bulbs and new wipers which I had already). All was going so well until I changed the oil (waited until the MOT pass in case there was no point). There was 1/2 pint left! No low pressure light, no check oil message, nothing. I'd checked the level a couple of nights before and it was fine. (I clean the stick, dip, check, repeat.)

Immediate action was to refill, change filter, check the cam. I did this and adjusted tappets - they were a little more than the 0.1 and 0.25 required. I've decided to run it for a month and monitor the level daily.

My next action will be to use a flush, drain, drop the sump, check the big end shells, pump pickup, etc.

Until then, three further things have happened, or in the case of one, started to get worse:

  1. Coming to a stop there is a strong smell of burning oil. Got it up on ramps, checked the back of the engine and a pipe was dangling down at the back of the engine. This was obviously meant to be connected just above the oil filter, right next to it... So the oil was squirting directly at the back of the engine and the exhaust manifold and exhaust. Great, possibly the initial cause of the lack of oil - had they knocked it off when up on ramps for the MOT?
  2. After reattaching the hose, throttle response has been awful after the engine has started to warm up. When pressing the pedal a little, nothing happens, a little more then it springs violently into life, jolting on the mounts and jumping the car forward (any gear, any speed). Deceleration is smoother though, so this could be down to a vacuum leak from that hose? Once the engine is up to temperature the problem seems worse. It will idle under 700 rpm. From higher revs, (when the pedal is lifted) it will drop smoothly right down to almost stalling before the engine will bring it back up to around 600-700rpm. If I am turning on full lock and braking whilst pulling up to reverse park at work, it will stall with the two systems putting additional strain on the engine before it has the chance to recover. This can also happen with braking alone. This can also happening when feathering the throttle under 1500rpm (at the point where the engine starts to react it will initially speed up but very quickly stall unless I stamp on the throttle). After one of these times the emissions light came on. I check the codes, only one was shown: P0170 - fuel trim system malfunction. I know this to relate to the fueling components of the system including (but this isn't everything):
    • Sensors:
      • knock
      • throttle position
      • throttle pedal position
      • pre-cat lambda probe
      • post-cat lambda probe
      • MAP
      • Intake air temperature
      • Engine coolant
      • Crankshaft position
    • Other Parts:
      • Wiring loom
      • ECU
      • Fuel filter
      • Fuel pump
      • Vacuum hoses
      • Intake manifold
      • Throttle body
      • Air filter
      • Fuel lines
      • EVAP system
      • Catalytic converter
      • Throttle body
      • Throttle position actuator
  3. The oil pressure warning light has started to flicker when the engine has warmed up and seems to be idling very low, around 600rpm. If left to warm up a little longer, it will eventually stay on while idling but immediately disappears when the throttle is touched. This appears to me to be that the engine isn't idling fast enough to keep the pressure up, so I'm happy to leave this until the second issue is solved and I am convinced the first issue was fixed the first time.
At the weekend, if I get the time (baby, two kids, stressed wife, no money, halloween costumes to finish and overtime will probably mean there's very little time), I will attempt to:
  • get under the car and check that hose hasn't come off again
  • pull the pre-cat O2 sensor and check for abnormalities - I suspect this to be the main cause for a lot of the running problems
  • check the air filter isn't clogged with oil from the reattached hose - I didn't look any deeper than reattaching the hose but, I assume this is part of the breather system which is poorly engineered, in to the valve cover?
  • check the spark plugs for fowling, to determine whether running rich or lean (done after a long drive, so that the colour is seen when the engine has warmed right up)
  • check oil level
  • check codes
  • clean the crank position sensor - don't think it is this, as when I eventually get the immobilizer disabled - dodgy barrel transceiver ring thingy that requires a little twisting while pushing at times - it starts first time and runs very well until it starts to warm up
  • change the dogbone mount - helps for a short while to reduce the jolting on the driveshafts
  • spray carb cleaner round the intake to find any leaks
Can anyone help with some obvious diagnoses/tests? MadNoel, I know you have some great ideas, no pressure.

It's frustrating with no money or time to get this done. My intention is to part-ex/sell the car in Jan/Feb and get something a little more substantial. I would like to solve the big issues and have something good to sell cheaply for someone else wanting to get the most out of very little. If not, then it will go for scrap.


Currently in mah14681's garage:
2001 Clio Mk2 Ph1 1.2 16v Sport, 2001 Citroen Xsara Picasso 1.6 LX (95)
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