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Old 04-09-2017   #1
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2003 1,6 Active, engine cuts out, display reads 'loose connection'

Hello all,

New member with old problem, I guess.

While merrily driving along, engine cuts out, followed by all sorts of alarm lights in dash and the display reading 'loose connection'. I can then re-start engine right away, or after a short moment.

Booked a visit at the garage, but since it was an intermittent fault mechanic was sceptical, would run a diagnosis but if nothing showed up, he suspected he would be at at loss.

Last trip in car it was barely driveable.

Full disclosure: I was called away for work early, so had to cancel my appointment. Car is at home, I'm away and won't return for another 2 weeks. Meanwhile, I ask the boards advice on:

What can I do myself before handing the car over to mechanic?

- Check/clean D4 connector
- Check/clean all electrical connections, I can lay my eyes on. I don't know where the earths are located. Also, something about loose pins in the ECU? (maybe a little in over my head).

Anything else?

What would I have the mechanic do?
- Load test battery (lead/acid, 2-3 years old)
- Check/replace crank position sensor?

Anything else?

Above suggestions are what I could make out from gleaning the Stilo forum. Please tell me if I am missing anything obvious, because - 'All I want for Christmas is my old Stilo back'.

Any advice highly appreciated. I will be sure to post whatever the outcome. Promise!

Best regards,
Anders
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Old 05-09-2017   #2
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Re: 2003 1,6 Active, engine cuts out, display reads 'loose connection'

Have you considered ECU fault - which is quite common on the 1.6 due to the ECU mounting location, made all the more likely by the hot climate you live in. See this video for further detail:

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Old 05-09-2017   #3
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You should check the fusebox after the ECU. There is a guide / tutorial for disassembling and cleaning that at the forum. I only experienced loose connection related issues when I had problems with fusebox (rain goes in, connection between parts goes haywire...)
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Old 05-09-2017   #4
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Re: 2003 1,6 Active, engine cuts out, display reads 'loose connection'

Artermis:
Denmark has a hot climate? Pull the other one!
I remember seeing that video when I first bought the car 3-4 years ago and thinking "poor sod, happy I'm not in his shoes". Well, now I am!

I have never used a soldering iron in my life, and it makes me wonder what the odds are that I will bugger the ECU even more than it maybe already is. Repair in the video looks easy enough though.
A quick glance on the internet at Danish repair shops that specializes in refurbishing ECU's seems they all want the part to be delivered through a garage, no dealings directly with private customers. I think I will take the ECU to my mechanic and consult him on the matter.
As stated, I won't be home for another couple of weeks, so I have time to sleep on it.

Wody21:
Board settings won't me let post URL's, but I found it. The video posted by Artermis matches my symptoms better than the ones in the guide - but I will clean connections in the fuse box as well.

To the both of you, now that I have a sense of direction, I guess there will be light at the end of the tunnel, so a big thank you for taking your time to answer my questions!
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Last edited by Anders Pedersen; 05-09-2017 at 09:38.
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Old 06-09-2017   #5
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Re: 2003 1,6 Active, engine cuts out, display reads 'loose connection'

Quote Originally Posted by Anders Pedersen View Post
Artermis:
Denmark has a hot climate? Pull the other one!
Haha - fair point. For some reason, lord knows why, I'd decided in my head you were in Greece.

Cooler climates are potentially equally an issue as it puts more of a heat cycle through the ECU every time you go and drive it.

I agree I wouldnt be messing with the ECU lightly and if electronics isn't your thing it's best left to someone with experience on a Stilo; the electronics on these things aren't really that bad but they're sensitive enough to go horribly wrong if you mess it up.

Once you do move passed this problem it might be worth considering relocating the ECU to a cooler spot in the engine bay as a bit of a preventative measure.
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Old 06-09-2017   #6
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Re: 2003 1,6 Active, engine cuts out, display reads 'loose connection'

Quote Quote:
Once you do move passed this problem it might be worth considering relocating the ECU to a cooler spot in the engine bay as a bit of a preventative measure.
Maybe that would open up another can of worms.. I don't know if the ECU in the car today came with the new car in 2003, but if the ECU would last another 14 years if refurbished, I'd say it would have done good. All of the car would have done good, for that matter.
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