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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all! It's my first post (I didn't know this forum existed until today but it's already been really informative!) and I hope someone will be able to help me :)

I have a 97 Scenic 2.0 auto which I have had from new. In the past few days the electronic incident warning light has been coming on intermittently and has today been lit almost all day. It felt like it wasn't changing gear properly, which having read around on here, sounds like it has been putting itself into "limp home" mode. Tomorrow I plan to change the gearbox oil and see if that helps. I would prefer to try this first and not to have to start with getting it diagnostic checked as I have been quoted £70+ just for that and it has recently cost me quite a bit to get it through its MOT.

One thing I would like some thoughts on (over and above whether it sounds like my gearbox might be a dead duck!) is whether the symptoms described above could have been in any way caused or exacerbated by a rear-end shunt I received about three weeks ago. A kid in a fiesta skidded into me in the wet while I was stationery waiting to enter a roundabout. As the little dear has still not admitted liability :steam: my car has yet to be properly checked over after this accident.

I'd love to know whether it's possible for damage to a) the electronic sensors or b) the actual transmission can be caused by this type of accident.

Thanks to anyone who can shed some light

Suey
 

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Discussion Starter #3
it's the second to the right, the zig-zag one. The handbook calls it the "electronic incient warning light".

Interesting if it was to do with the exhaust as I have recently had parts of the exhaust system, including the catalytic convertor, replaced (for MOT).
 

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Hi Chris and everyone. Well, you were correct in your diagnosis of the lambda sensor. I took the car into a garage on recommendation and they put it up on the ramp only to find that the sensor was actually unplugged! They were slightly aghast, as was I. Part of the exhaust was replaced pre-MOT in April and then, when it failed on emissions, the garage replaced the catalytic convertor. Nothing has been done to it since. I took a photo to prove it to the other garage. Thank God for decent camera-phones!

The garage I took it to today said 1) it is normal, good practice to replace the lambda sensor when replacing the catalytic convertor, 2) it is possible that a faulty lambda sensor could have resulted in a damaged cat and this could have been the very reason for that to have needed replacing in the first place and 3) the fact that it appears the car has been running for two months without the sensor attached could mean that the new cat could now be damaged. They told me that it is not possible for the lambda sensor to become detached in the normal course of driving, as it is a snap-fit thing and can't just fall out, and that it would have had to have been detached to replace the catalytic convertor and must have simply not been re-attached afterwards.

I spoke to the garage who replaced the cat this afternoon and they have said they will look at it tomorrow for me. They said that they do not routinely replace the lambda sensor when they replace a cat and only change it "if required". They didn't elaborate on how you determine whether it is required or not. They did admit that it is possible that the sensor may not have been re-attached after the cat was replaced.

As I know next to nothing about any of this I would very much appreciate anyone's views on any of this. Particularly,

  • what test is there that would show that the lambda sensor does or does not need replacement separately to the catalytic convertor?
  • As the sensor is nearer the front of the car I presume that the rear-ender I had would be unlikely to have anything to do with this or would it be possible for the accident to have damaged the plug of the sensor so that it can detach itself?
  • The garage I took it to today who noticed the detached sensor plugged it back in for me (so they said) but now the engine management light is back on, so is it now likely to be lit because of a fault in the sensor or could it have become detached again?. It is right underneath the car so I can't easily check.

Thanks for any help or advice you can give me. I do love this car, having had it since it was born :d , but I am now beginning to wish I had cut my losses when it failed the MOT!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
thanks again, Chris, for the quick response. I will go and see the garage tomorrow and hope that I can at least get them to admit some fault and (if I'm very lucky) get a contribution towards the cost of a new lambda probe which I think I will get fitted elsewhere under the circumstances :d

I'll let you know how I get on.

Any other thoughts on the subject still gratefully received - especially anything that'll give me some leverage to use against the garage.
 
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