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post #1 of (permalink) Old 5th February 2009 Thread Starter
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Mysterious intermittent electrical/starting problems

I have a Scenic which we've driven from new but is getting on a bit. Lately it has developed some mysterious problems and I don't know if they're linked. I took it for it's MOT and the auto electrician was supposed to check it out, but by the time the garage was closing up he hadn't turned up and it had behaved itself all day anyway. So here are the symptoms:

Tuesday (freezing) started fine first thing (to check) then again later when I drove about 4 miles, stopped to drop off the children and the plip lock wouldn't work, so locked the doors manually, when I got back say 5 minutes later. Plip lock still not working and turning key did nothing. (OK think flat battery) So later that say jumped it and put it on trickle charge BUT it's not the first time and the previous time it refused to start (again outside school, oops) about 10 minutes later I got leads out of boot having unlocked with key and just plipped the locks without thinking, plip worked and engine started first time (so clearly wasn't flat that time as jump leads still in my handd and bonnet still closed!)

These sometimes getting nothing and sometimes starting things have happened more than that but that was latest two occasions. Now I've read lots of threads over last few days and if it's not the battery (which springing spontaneously back to life with out help would seem to rule out) it would seem to be this TDC sensor (whic we'll check at the weekend when we have some available daylight), but I haven't really understood what it does so don't know if these other things are linked.

Other (possibly related) symptoms:
1. clock and trip keep resetting to zero and radio keeps needing code.
2. Whilst driving along ABS light comes on occasionally and then goes off again after a few seconds.
3. Whilst driving along radio will suddenly set its volume down to barely audible, this often happens when dipping and undipping lights but not sure if always and not exclusively.
4. Often dies during first mile or two: either I suddenly feel power steering go whilst I'm driving, or while I'm at a junction. In the former case it sometimes restarts (I guess the momentum I already have bumps it?)
5. Sometimes turning the ignition it sounds a bit sluggish and fails to turn over the engine, and I have to rev a lot and then it works or it starts and dies and next time when I start it I rev a lot and al of a sudden it seems happy with running and I can let it idle and it doesn't die as if something has unblocked.

Hope this huge list isn't too daunting. As I say, wondering how many faults may be linked. (Seriously displeased with auto-spark who didn't turn up)
Currently in Binklet's garage:
1997 Scenic 1.6
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Mysterious intermittent electrical/starting... Electronics Asterix 4 836 5th February 2009 09:08 PM
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