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Old 10-03-2016   #1
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Thumbs up Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Hi there, I'm hoping someone can answer my question.

I have a 2011 Fiat 500L that I bought in 2013.
Last month, I turned on the engine to see that all the dashboard lights were on, the mileage were flashing, and on a couple of occasions since then the engine has cut out.
I took it to my local garage who tried everything they could, but were not able to fix the problem. They ran diagnostic reports overnight which came back inconclusive, so they said that it could very possibly be something to do with a software update fault that was meant to be classed as a recall fault with Fiat, except the recall never happened. They have recommended that I contact a main Fiat dealer who can shed some light on this for me.

My husband called Bishops in Guildford who took 3 days to finally respond (after he eventually called them back again and again), and they said that they could only investigate if they took the car in for several days.
This could literally end up costing the earth, and I really don't want to go in there empty handed if there is any possible chance it could be a fault that Fiat are trying to cover up. Money is very tight and I'm expecting a baby in May, so pretty on edge to get this sorted as quickly but as cheaply as possible.

Any help or advice would be appreciated.

A
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Old 10-03-2016   #2
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

As its a 2011 it could be the battery is starting to fail this is the first thing i would check as it has a habit of throwing faults when its on its way out ,has the battery been tested ? if not ask if a local garage can put a new one on to test thanks,Richard.
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Old 10-03-2016   #3
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Quote Originally Posted by alred1983 View Post
Hi there, I'm hoping someone can answer my question.

I have a 2011 Fiat 500L that I bought in 2013.
Last month, I turned on the engine to see that all the dashboard lights were on, the mileage were flashing, and on a couple of occasions since then the engine has cut out.
I took it to my local garage who tried everything they could, but were not able to fix the problem. They ran diagnostic reports overnight which came back inconclusive, so they said that it could very possibly be something to do with a software update fault that was meant to be classed as a recall fault with Fiat, except the recall never happened. They have recommended that I contact a main Fiat dealer who can shed some light on this for me.

My husband called Bishops in Guildford who took 3 days to finally respond (after he eventually called them back again and again), and they said that they could only investigate if they took the car in for several days.
This could literally end up costing the earth, and I really don't want to go in there empty handed if there is any possible chance it could be a fault that Fiat are trying to cover up. Money is very tight and I'm expecting a baby in May, so pretty on edge to get this sorted as quickly but as cheaply as possible.

Any help or advice would be appreciated.

A
Hi alred1983,

Welcome to the forum by the way.

As rkt2003, the first port of call would be the battery. If your car is still on its original battery from new then there is a reasonable chance that it is on the way out. Modern car batteries can throw up all sorts of strange gremlins when they are beginning to fail, so that wouldn't be a huge surprise.

The flashing mileage problem - this has been reported on here quite a bit, it may mean that your car is in need of a proxy alignment. Here's quite an old thread with an example of this:
https://www.fiatforum.com/500/209435...-odometer.html

Other than that, you say the car has cut out a few times. When has it cut out; just after you have fired the car up from cold, or when you have been driving it for a while?
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Last edited by Super Uwe; 10-03-2016 at 14:58.
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Old 10-03-2016   #4
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Hmm, wonder if this should be moved to the 500 section rather than the 500L section? The 500L has only been about since 2013 so I have my doubts. What do you think @jrkitching?

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Old 10-03-2016   #5
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Well spotted Super Uwe!! could be a typing error or a 500 as you say, looks like we will have to wait until they log back in!!
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Old 10-03-2016   #6
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Quote Originally Posted by Super Uwe View Post
Hmm, wonder if this should be moved to the 500 section rather than the 500L section? The 500L has only been about since 2013 so I have my doubts. What do you think @jrkitching?
If the OP comes back to say it's a 500 (rather than a 500L) then I'll get it moved.

If it is a 500, then I'd bet serious money on this being yet another case of the well-known and much reported hatch wiring fault issue, most probably solvable by rewiring the hatch & doing a proxy alignment.
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Old 10-03-2016   #7
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Quote Originally Posted by alred1983 View Post
Hi there, I'm hoping someone can answer my question.

I have a 2011 Fiat 500L that I bought in 2013.
Last month, I turned on the engine to see that all the dashboard lights were on, the mileage were flashing, and on a couple of occasions since then the engine has cut out.
I took it to my local garage who tried everything they could, but were not able to fix the problem. They ran diagnostic reports overnight which came back inconclusive, so they said that it could very possibly be something to do with a software update fault that was meant to be classed as a recall fault with Fiat, except the recall never happened. They have recommended that I contact a main Fiat dealer who can shed some light on this for me.

My husband called Bishops in Guildford who took 3 days to finally respond (after he eventually called them back again and again), and they said that they could only investigate if they took the car in for several days.
This could literally end up costing the earth, and I really don't want to go in there empty handed if there is any possible chance it could be a fault that Fiat are trying to cover up. Money is very tight and I'm expecting a baby in May, so pretty on edge to get this sorted as quickly but as cheaply as possible.

Any help or advice would be appreciated.

A
Hi everyone, and thanks for getting back to me! You're right, my bad - sorry I have the Fiat 500 Lounge, not the 500L.

The engine has cut out 3 times since the dashboard first lit up. Twice I would put it down to the cold, but then once I was driving slowly at about 15 mp/hr through a car park, and it just stopped. I would assume it may have been just the cold engine, but as I have seen in a few posts on the net about these problems, i thought I should mention it anyway.

Hope that clears a few things up, and thank you so much for your responses - you have helped massively already!
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Old 10-03-2016   #8
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Quote Originally Posted by jrkitching View Post
If the OP comes back to say it's a 500 (rather than a 500L) then I'll get it moved.

If it is a 500, then I'd bet serious money on this being yet another case of the well-known and much reported hatch wiring fault issue, most probably solvable by rewiring the hatch & doing a proxy alignment.
@jrkitching - thanks for your reply.
That fault sounds expensive! Is there anywhere I can find out more information on this "hatch wiring fault issue", that I can take with me to Fiat? Is this something that they could be liable for (AKA I wouldn't have to spend my life savings on?)
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Old 10-03-2016   #9
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Quote Originally Posted by rkt2003 View Post
As its a 2011 it could be the battery is starting to fail this is the first thing i would check as it has a habit of throwing faults when its on its way out ,has the battery been tested ? if not ask if a local garage can put a new one on to test thanks,Richard.
Thanks @rkt2003 - I will get them to have a look in to this. I don't believe it has had the original battery replaced; not since I owned it anyway.

Thanks again!
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Old 10-03-2016   #10
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Quote Originally Posted by alred1983 View Post
That fault sounds expensive! Is there anywhere I can find out more information on this "hatch wiring fault issue", that I can take with me to Fiat? Is this something that they could be liable for (AKA I wouldn't have to spend my life savings on?)
Read about it here and here.

There are pictures in the second link which show you where to look and what to look for. On a 2011 car, I'd say it's more likely to have this problem than not.

I'd strongly recommend you disconnect the battery before inspecting it as a short circuit in this wiring could cause further damage to the car's electronic systems.

Fixing the wiring isn't particularly expensive (£50-£100; but if it's not done correctly it'll keep happening), and a proxy alignment is just a quick reset using a suitable computerised tool; many independent garages won't be able to do this, though.

If you are unfortunate enough to have a short circuit in this wiring which has affected other electronic components on the car (unusual but it has happened), then it could be considerably more expensive. There's no real way of knowing this until the wiring has been repaired, any error codes cleared and you've had a proxy alignment. Trying to run diagnostics on a car with a wiring fault is futile; the hardware must be fixed first; some Fiat dealers seem not to apprciate this and at least one person has had a lot of unnecessary work done to the airbag system in consequence (flagging various airbag warnings can be another symptom of this fault - it just depends which wires have broken and/or shorted out).

Fiat have been generally unhelpful in either recognising or addressing the problem. Some folks have been charged for repairs even on cars still under the original warranty. On a 2011 car bought secondhand in 2013, I doubt very much they'd offer any help at all.

Aftermarket wiring repair kits are readily available, which will give you some idea of how widespread this issue is.
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Last edited by jrkitching; 10-03-2016 at 17:05.
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Old 10-03-2016   #11
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Hi again @jrkitching and thanks so much for your advice. I've noted down every possibility mentioned above and will investigate all avenues now.
So far Fiat have been less than helpful and pretty tight-lipped about what it could be. At least now I can go in there and roughly sound as if I know what I'm talking about, which just may prevent some lame excuses from one of their customer service team.

If this ever gets resolved I will let you all know the outcome!

All the best, @alred1983
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Old 14-03-2016   #12
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Re: Electrical Fault - All dashboard lights displayed

Quote Originally Posted by jrkitching View Post
If the OP comes back to say it's a 500 (rather than a 500L) then I'll get it moved.

If it is a 500, then I'd bet serious money on this being yet another case of the well-known and much reported hatch wiring fault issue, most probably solvable by rewiring the hatch & doing a proxy alignment.
I think you may be spot on with this one! I should have remembered the hatch wiring fault seeing as so many people seem to suffer from it on the 500 section.

Will be interesting to see what the final outcome is.
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