Register Login
Shop4Parts - UK's largest online superstore for FIAT and Alfa Romeo parts
Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 20-02-2016   #1
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 4
Thanks: 0
Trader Rating: 0
United Kingdom 
Unhappy 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Hi guys

First post on here so hi to you all. Wanted to run something by you all, all advice greatly appreciated.

So here's the thing. I've had a fiat 500 twin air from new, purchased from main dealer under finance 3 years and 3 months ago.

So far so simple. Kept the car going well, had new brakes here and there, new tyres etc. Just passed the first MOT with flying colours. Kept to service schedule, except last one which was due about a year ago. So car is overdue a service.

I've used it mainly for commuting with no problems, but mileage is high for its age, currently at 68300. So yes, it's done a lot in its first three years but glad to say everything all good so far.

THEN, about a week ago, I got in the car and switched on, two lights came up on dash, one for general fault and other check engine light. The engine compartment was vibrating intermittently and loudly. Loss of power to car, drove 50m to end of road and then pulled over and switched off. Caught the bus to work. Prior to this no noises, warning lights or anything else to suggest the car was just about to knacker itself.

That afternoon I booked car in to local garage for diagnostic. Was aware (as sod's law dictates) I was three months approx outside the warranty so didn't contact main dealer where I bought the car. Next day I drove 0.5 mile up the road (slowly, nervously) but car made it to garage. Described the problem and left.

Two hours later I got a phone call. It went like this:

"I suggest you take this straight to your main dealer, we suspect total engine failure. One piston not maintaining compression.... Lots of things wrong that shouldn't be. As a good will gesture as it's just out of warranty, Fiat ought to fix it. If you don't get any joy come back and see me."

"OK", I said.

So the car is now with my main dealer awaiting inspection on Monday.

Anyone had any experience of what fiat does in situations like this? If it is totally knackered I'm really worried as it's literally just out of warranty by 3 months. Plus I've still got a year of finance payments left! Also, because mileage high, I knew I'd have to put some more in for final payment.

If the engine needs replacing, how do you all think fiat will play this? How should I play it? I'm really worried as if they don't be nice about it, I stand to lose thousands. Should I just go to sleep crying or is there hope?

Any advice really appreciated.
__________________
FIAT Forum Useful Links:
Donate to FF | Buy FF Merchandise | Classifieds | FF Insurance | How-to Guides

1066hastings is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 20-02-2016   #2
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Norfolk UK
Posts: 9,013
Thanks: 388
Blog Entries: 8
Trader Rating: 0
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Not wanting to dishearten you too much but bear in mind that fiat customer service is mostly, pretty shocking.

The twin air has valves controlled by oil being pushed through special valves, this allows very precise management of valve timing.

If you've not had it serviced for a long time it might be the old oil has caused damage to those special valves and thus the engine valves are not working properly and if they pin the blame on you not having the engine serviced then they is likely nothing you will be able to do, and fiat won't be making a good will gesture for that.

If you are only a few hundred miles past the service or a couple of months then you have more of an argument, but it sounds like you might be a year past due ?
Likes varesecrazy liked this post
__________________
Maker and voice behind the YouTube channel PuntoHowTo

And now the owner of a shiny new PuntoHowTo Drivetribe
AndyRKett is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 21-02-2016   #3
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Near the M4
Posts: 18,986
Thanks: 676
Trader Rating: 0
varesecrazy has donated!
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Quote Originally Posted by 1066hastings View Post
Hi guys

First post on here so hi to you all. Wanted to run something by you all, all advice greatly appreciated.


If the engine needs replacing, how do you all think fiat will play this? How should I play it? I'm really worried as if they don't be nice about it, I stand to lose thousands. Should I just go to sleep crying or is there hope?

Any advice really appreciated.
Hi,
as Andy says. .. it's NOT a conventional engine , it uses solenoids to "inject" the fuel air mixture..NOT a conventional inlet valve

SO if the "multiair unit "( that relies on clean oil to operate) has failed you'll have limited compression

sounds like a simple fix.. however the units are pricey.. FIAT have stood up for "premature wear" cases in the past.. however as you've not kept to the service schedule they may not be so forthcoming..

EDIT - details here;
https://www.fiatforum.com/500/418936...d-failure.html

However - the units have been around for @8 years now (Grande Punto - Multiair) so access to a working used one should save SOME money.. or even buy a complete 500 TA engine from a write-off for circa @800

TBH - I'm at the point where there SHOULD be a business model for refurbishing these units cost effectively..
as there are literally THOUSANDS of them reaching the limits of their "service life" now

Charlie - Oxford - Punto TA
__________________
FIAT Forum Useful Links:
Donate to FF | Buy FF Merchandise | Classifieds | FF Insurance | How-to Guides


Last edited by varesecrazy; 21-02-2016 at 14:43.
varesecrazy is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 21-02-2016   #4
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 4
Thanks: 0
Trader Rating: 0
United Kingdom 
Thumbs up Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Thanks for the replies so far, I was worried the missed service might prove an issue... I had kept all the fluids topped up as a matter of course, can't see how sparks and pollen filters etc would technically come into the engine going kaput. As you say I'll have to wait and see what they say. Will post back to update progress (if any!)
__________________
FIAT Forum Useful Links:
Donate to FF | Buy FF Merchandise | Classifieds | FF Insurance | How-to Guides

1066hastings is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 21-02-2016   #5
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Near the M4
Posts: 18,986
Thanks: 676
Trader Rating: 0
varesecrazy has donated!
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Quote Originally Posted by 1066hastings View Post
Thanks for the replies so far, I was worried the missed service might prove an issue... I had kept all the fluids topped up as a matter of course, can't see how sparks and pollen filters etc would technically come into the engine going kaput. As you say I'll have to wait and see what they say. Will post back to update progress (if any!)
it's the oil quality that's supposedly critical..

did you see the link on the post for a new unit @400..??

Charlie
__________________
FIAT Forum Useful Links:
Donate to FF | Buy FF Merchandise | Classifieds | FF Insurance | How-to Guides

varesecrazy is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 21-02-2016   #6
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 4
Thanks: 0
Trader Rating: 0
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Quote Originally Posted by varesecrazy View Post
it's the oil quality that's supposedly critical..

did you see the link on the post for a new unit @400..??

Charlie

Hi Charlie I had a look yes, THB it's all in Fiat's hands, if they won't play ball because of whatever reasons, I will need to bite the bullet and either go ahead with the work they say (with them or not) or get a recon engine fitted, I'll go with whichever is cheaper at the end of the day. Please remind me never to buy a car on finance ever again!
__________________
FIAT Forum Useful Links:
Donate to FF | Buy FF Merchandise | Classifieds | FF Insurance | How-to Guides

1066hastings is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 21-02-2016   #7
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Faringdon, Oxfordshire UK
Posts: 5,806
Thanks: 460
Trader Rating: 1
portland_bill has donated!
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

It is likely that the hydraulic valve control is failing due to being gummed up with old oil deposits. Infrequent oil changes is the cause. If the hydraulic valves need cleaning or replacing, that should surely be possible without major dismantling, and no need to replace the whole engine. Let's not panic until the diagnosis is done.
Likes Ralf S. liked this post
__________________
13 years motor trade, 16 years motor industry. 14 years Driving Instructor & 7 years Fleet Trainer
Panda Alessi
portland_bill is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 21-02-2016   #8
Join Date: Feb 2016
Posts: 4
Thanks: 0
Trader Rating: 0
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Quote Originally Posted by portland_bill View Post
It is likely that the hydraulic valve control is failing due to being gummed up with old oil deposits. Infrequent oil changes is the cause. If the hydraulic valves need cleaning or replacing, that should surely be possible without major dismantling, and no need to replace the whole engine. Let's not panic until the diagnosis is done.
I will take that advice and continue calmly. As you say lets wait for the diagnostic. I think what you say is going to prove pretty much bang on , high mileage plus missed service equals problems.
__________________
FIAT Forum Useful Links:
Donate to FF | Buy FF Merchandise | Classifieds | FF Insurance | How-to Guides

1066hastings is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 08-03-2016   #9
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Near the M4
Posts: 18,986
Thanks: 676
Trader Rating: 0
varesecrazy has donated!
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Quote Originally Posted by 1066hastings View Post
I will take that advice and continue calmly. As you say lets wait for the diagnostic. I think what you say is going to prove pretty much bang on , high mileage plus missed service equals problems.
any updates..??
__________________
FIAT Forum Useful Links:
Donate to FF | Buy FF Merchandise | Classifieds | FF Insurance | How-to Guides

varesecrazy is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 08-03-2016   #10
Moderator
 
Andy Monty's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: East Yorkshire
Posts: 13,910
Thanks: 1160
Trader Rating: 0
Andy Monty has donated!
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Quote Originally Posted by 1066hastings View Post
remind me never to buy a car on finance ever again!

might be worth telling the finance company its knackered they have joint liability with the supplier over it been fit for purpose if your a AA or RAC member they have a members legal help line
__________________
What Goes Up Must Come Down.....

Quote Originally Posted by Most Easterly Pandas View Post
Massive gash
Quote Originally Posted by EmmaM88 View Post
Just a little touch up
Andy Monty is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Old 09-03-2016   #11
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Faringdon, Oxfordshire UK
Posts: 5,806
Thanks: 460
Trader Rating: 1
portland_bill has donated!
United Kingdom 
Re: 3 year old fiat 500 engine give up no warning

Quote Originally Posted by Andy Monty View Post
might be worth telling the finance company its knackered they have joint liability with the supplier over it been fit for purpose if your a AA or RAC member they have a members legal help line
With a missed oil change, and a problem apparently related to old oil, I doubt there's any liability anywhere but with the owner. Hopefully not too expensive to replace the hydraulic valve controls, without head removal.
__________________
13 years motor trade, 16 years motor industry. 14 years Driving Instructor & 7 years Fleet Trainer
Panda Alessi
portland_bill is offline Reply With Quote Quote 
Reply
Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump
Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
(G) Fiat 500: Designed by an eleven year-old MuddyWaters 500 35 10-02-2010 16:34
(G) WARNING A magic 500 with a 1.2 and 1.4 engine? Warning. Ms_Cinq 500 20 11-01-2008 00:42
Auto Plus: Fiat 500 is CAR OF THE YEAR!!! raton_laveur Lets Talk FIAT 8 10-01-2008 17:43
(T) Fiat Punto 1.2 ELX Year 02 engine trouble Nadiniho Punto (Mk2/2b) 4 09-01-2007 16:59