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Old 16-05-2018   #1
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Early Twinair DMF failure

Hi All,


We have been advised that the DMF on our Mito twinair has failed - The car is 3 weeks outside of warranty and only covered 27,000 miles.

My question is, has anyone had trouble with the DMF on their 500 twinairs? (I know not all Fiat twinairs had DMF's).

The Fiat dealership we have the car at has said they have replaced a couple recently, so i'm beginning to wonder if there is some sort of design weakness.

I'm opening a case with Alfa / Fiat with a view of getting some sort of contribution, so if anyone else has had any similar problems i'd really appreciate you letting me know

Thanks,
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Old 16-05-2018   #2
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Did you have the car in for diagnosis before the warranty expired and then again after ?
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Old 16-05-2018   #3
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

See the current thread "Gearbox going?" on the Panda (2012+) forum for a recent, expensive DMF failure on a TA.
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Last edited by gar074; 16-05-2018 at 14:21.
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Old 16-05-2018   #4
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Thanks guys - We didnít hear the noise until about 3 weeks after the warranty expired - assume itís been there a while but has just got loud enough to hear over the normal Twinair engine noise, along with difficulty selecting gears.

Will check out the panda forum also...
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Old 17-05-2018   #5
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

It's not just Twinair DMF's that fail, the life of they seem limited where ever they get fitted.

Trouble with them in car's like ours is that they do spend a lot of time in town and get a bit more hammering than perhaps one in a sales rep mondeo that cruises up and down the motorway all day.

But writing that, 27k isn't great, they should last far longer.
Reasonably, you would think it should at least last the life of the clutch friction plate, trouble is manufacturers all default to the same excuse, they use the old chestnut "it's the way it's been driven" to get out of any claim.

I suspect you might soon here this and if you aren't in the dealers already with the gearbox out and they won't contribute, I would pull it from them, take it to a gearbox/clutch specialist and get a LUK replacement fitted.

LUK seem the go to product for DMF failures outside of dealers.

Don't let anyone talk you into a solid conversion, you'll ruin the gearbox in no time as the DMF takes out the massive torque spikes that the gearbox just cannot cope with.
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Last edited by Goudrons; 17-05-2018 at 07:43.
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Old 17-05-2018   #6
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

I've seen 2 fail, both damaged the gearbox casing in the area the release bearing runs on. So its a box strip to change the casing. Luckily both were covered on warranty. I dread to think of the cost if not. That thought hastened the departure of my TA for a 1.2 Panda....
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Last edited by Bluetruck; 17-05-2018 at 16:58.
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Old 17-05-2018   #7
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

I think pre 2014 and Euro 6 there was no DMF though
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Old 18-05-2018   #8
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Quote Originally Posted by Goudrons View Post
Don't let anyone talk you into a solid conversion, you'll ruin the gearbox in no time as the DMF takes out the massive torque spikes that the gearbox just cannot cope with.
Since early cars don't have DMFs, you're unlikely to have any issues going solid. A push bike has much bigger torque spikes.
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Old 18-05-2018   #9
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Aren't they only fitted to the 105 engine? Or have they started fitting them to the 85 more recently? If so, you have to ask why - I haven't noticed reports of exploding gearboxes on TA 85s.
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Old 18-05-2018   #10
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Torque spikes when shifting gear can reach around 30,000 to 35,000 nm for a NA engined car, but this can double with forced induction engines.

Most car gearboxes are rated to handle around 300 to 400 nm constant torque and can usually handle spikes of around x10 of their rating.

It's why DMF's get fitted.

They became much more common (as did their failures) in everyday cars when manufacturers began selling more and more modern turbo's, it's almost certianly why Fiat decided the to swap a cheap and simple solid flywheel for a more expensive and complicated (and unreliable) dual mass one, though I was under the impression is was the 65hp Twinair that had the solid flywheel.

Though they aren't solely designed to protect the gearbox and drivetrain, they protect the crankshaft from suffering excess torque, they can fit lighter crankshafts, bearings and conrods to allow for smoother and more balanced engines due to them having less reciprocating and rotational mass.

The whole engine and drivetrain are designed around the use of a DMF which is why you shouldn't swap them out for solid.
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Old 18-05-2018   #11
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Thanks for the responses - Just had an update from the garage - The Flywheel centre bearing has collapsed, causing damage to the bellhousing also. Looking at over £1,600 for the repair.

Digging around online it seems i'm not the only twinair owner who has experienced this either.

I'm aware that DMF's can and do cause hassle (I used to work for Valeo), but for a complete failure at 27,000 miles and 3 weeks out of warranty, especially when the car has been driven with a good mix of town + rural use I don't think is acceptable.
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Old 18-05-2018   #12
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Quote Originally Posted by Charlie1989 View Post
a complete failure at 27,000 miles and 3 weeks out of warranty, especially when the car has been driven with a good mix of town + rural use I don't think is acceptable.
It's shocking. Do they make these DMFs out of cheese?
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Old 18-05-2018   #13
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Regarding goodwill from Alfa, reduced labour and contribution to parts possible. Will the replacement last rest of working life of the car, hope so. If it went again, get rid maybe.
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Old 18-05-2018   #14
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Re: Early Twinair DMF failure

Quote Originally Posted by Goudrons View Post
It's not just Twinair DMF's that fail, the life of they seem limited where ever they get fitted.

Trouble with them in car's like ours is that they do spend a lot of time in town and get a bit more hammering than perhaps one in a sales rep mondeo that cruises up and down the motorway all day.

But writing that, 27k isn't great, they should last far longer.
I agree. My 2013 Passat is on 140k miles, still on original clutch and dmf, with no death-rattle or signs of wear.

If they fail early, it's either a design weakness, or down to user abuse.
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Old 19-05-2018   #15
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Quote Originally Posted by MrDerv View Post
I agree. My 2013 Passat is on 140k miles, still on original clutch and dmf, with no death-rattle or signs of wear.

If they fail early, it's either a design weakness, or down to user abuse.
Ditto. Iíve got a 320d with almost 150k miles on the clock, still got the original clutch and DMF.

With it being Fiat Iíd say itís design weakness more than anything.
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