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Old 17-09-18, 11:31 AM   #1
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Default An Idiot has landed...

Hi all. thought I'd announce myself here...

Why? Well I've just bought a Partner Tepee, Petrol, 120bhp 1.6l "BMW?" engine, 2010, in silver. Bought with known electrical faults for not a huge amount, well behind forecourt price and in decent condition, the odd light scuff but nothing that won't polish out. As a retired electronic test engineer, electrics don't faze me at all!

I'd have posted a picture of it but not enough posts it tells me.....

Not the first Partner we've owned, having previously owned a 2007, yellow, 1.4l petrol, ex-Motability wheelchair car, whilst we were carers for the wife's elderly mum who in her later years became wheelchair dependant. Although it was painfully underpowered, (my 1976 Reliant Kitten is much faster!).

Susan loved it, but after mum died, a wheelchair car was no use to us so we sold it - and bought a blue Berlingo, 1.6l petrol,...…. 2009 with the 90bhp engine. She really loved this one but, alas, last month it was rear-ended on the M1 - very hard, and was written off, hence the purchase of the Partner.

It actually came from a commercial dealer in Morecombe, who had it serviced and when I asked for the cam belt to be done as well (as I had with the Berlingo when we bought it) I was pleased to be told that this doesn't have one, being chain driven....

Not much (indeed any really) service history, the service book containing no stamps whatsoever bar the supplying dealer's pdi one. That said, it runs uncannily quietly, and it looks to have been maintained over its 75,000 miles (half what the Berlingo had done).

So what were the electrical issues? - well none really to speak of. The reversing sensors didn't bleep - easily solved, plus the ubiquitous "pollution control fault". I cleared this (and the dozen or so other messages in the memory - don't think it had ever seen an ODB2 reader) but within a short time this message returned, along with the engine light now being on permanently. That said it seems to run OK, maybe a bit lumpy, which clearing the codes again sorts out fine, for 20 miles or so.

So Wednesday lunchtime its booked into Evans Halshaw Peugeot for a diagnostic report... Whatever this throws up will be where I start. Not much in the MOT history to help me either, though 2 years ago it did fail on emissions, Lambda sensor replaced as was the catalyst.

Ploughed through all the "pollution control" faults on here - confused? - you betcha. Having owned, maintained and run the Kitten for decades (and 6 times round the clock) though, plus a couple of similarly ancient Honda motorcycles (a C90 and a CB500/4) I reckon I'm made of suitably stern stuff - we'll see!

John
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Old 17-09-18, 08:10 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forums John.

Thank you for introducing yourself and wish you well sorting those electrical gemlins out.

Enjoy the site.

Paul
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Old 17-09-18, 08:17 PM   #3
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Its NOT a BMW engine its a peugeot engine with BMW designed head and this is the main problem part on this engine !!

Your antipollution issue and rough running are 1 of the many things wrong with these engines i may be timing chain related it may be the dropped valve seat issue but a dealer is definately not the best place to start hope you have deep pockets.
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Old 17-09-18, 08:51 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reliable406 View Post
Its NOT a BMW engine its a peugeot engine with BMW designed head and this is the main problem part on this engine !!

Your antipollution issue and rough running are 1 of the many things wrong with these engines i may be timing chain related it may be the dropped valve seat issue but a dealer is definately not the best place to start hope you have deep pockets.
The BMW bit makes sense....

Don't agree about the main dealer comment though, helps to have one not too far away and in theory their technicians should be more experienced in the foibles of these cars, though reading through this forum maybe not - worth a try though.

Deep pockets I do not have, being a pensioner! However it's booked in for diagnosis and report only - 60 they quoted. Whatever they report I will address myself. I do have better tools and equipment here than most so don't see too many problems in this area.

The rough running occurs only after the fault comes on - very powerful, smooth and quiet when it's clear, so I don't think the fault will be mechanical. I don't have access to a proper Peugeot (Planet) tester and although a good (and expensive) universal one, mine is really only suitable for basic OBD2 diagnosis. It will identify and clear codes, program keys and such but that's about all. It was far more effective on the Berlingo - odd that PSA seems to use different software on the Peugeots!!!

John
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Old 17-09-18, 10:19 PM   #5
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Welcome to the forum from me too John.......

I hope the diagnostics check goes well for you - Good luck.
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Old 18-09-18, 08:09 AM   #6
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The 60 spent at the dealers would be better spent buying yourself planet as you could then diagnose properly yourself.

Its not really any different to the berlingo systems are the same but after 2009 the software was changed and in 2015 it was messed with again thats why some cannot communicate they keep moving the goalposts you would have the same issues with a 2010 berlingo they call it progress

Hopefully your issue is not the head as it can get expensive Chains tend to only last 60k miles or so before getting too stretched but not much to do about that as so many manufacturers are going back to chains you just have to suffer it and replace them !
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Old 19-09-18, 04:04 PM   #7
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Well the results of the diagnostic are in, pretty much what I expected, but something I hadn't anticipated was the clear evidence of bodgery. This said thus far I'm very impressed with Evans Halshaw Peugeot (Mansfield branch)...

We dropped it down there and shortly after getting home the phone rang from the engineer dealing with it asking questions.... It would appear that somebody had been fiddling with the ECU (to try to mask the error?)..... They had to undo this before they could actually interrogate it!! He did tell me that even if I had possessed a Planet reader, I wouldn't have been able to get any sense out of it due to the software corruption - I still plan to get one though as this car is planned to be a keeper.

Having answered his questions, he called back a couple of hours later with the results. Although the engine runs uncannily quietly, the fault came down to timing chain and sprockets. The guy didn't mix his words telling me about these engines and their timing chains, totally upfront about the problems they have found with them. He did tell me that replacement chains are better quality than the original fitments, but that it's really important to renew the tensioner, sprockets, seals and such and also recommended replacing the solenoid valves too.

Then he gave me the quote to do the job and I nearly fell over!! Not from the expense, far from it, far less than I was expecting. A pal from Milton Keynes recently had to have the timing chain renewed on his Peugeot 308 at his local main dealer and it cost him 1800 - about much twice as much as my quote!!!!!! So I've told them to do it as it is within what we've budgeted. They reckon I'll get it back next Tuesday.

I suspect he believes that the timing chain has in fact recently been renewed, but probably only the chain, which would explain why the engine is so quiet as he did say that the chain generally gets quite noisy well before the ECU kicks in...

Impressive to find a main dealer engineer who is candid and seems to know what he's talking about.. We'll see what next Tuesday brings.

John
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Old 19-09-18, 05:06 PM   #8
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As i said its a problematic engine and as you now understand unlike what you initially thought having a chain is NOT a good thing nowadays ask them to show you the old chain and if you compare it to the chain for your kitten engine you will fully understand why they fail !

Chains are not ALWAYS noisy before the timing goes too far out and makes the ecu unhappy though

As for planet would not talk to it thats what HE uses !

Hopefully the chain will see it back to normal for you make sure it gets plenty oil changes too they can be reliable if looked after but need better maintainance than your old 1.4.
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Old 19-09-18, 07:02 PM   #9
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Nah, I still think chains are better than belts - chains don't tend to snap without warning and generally they do last for longer than belts between replacement, though maybe not on these engines!

That said, no way would I ever fit a genuine Reliant cam chain to the Kitten. A brilliant engineer, Hans Kirama of Rebels Racing, showed me a comparison of the new genuine Reliant cam chain I had supplied when he rebuilt (actually blueprinted) my engine for me and he then showed me the chain he would actually fit. When he turned both sideways and bent them the "wrong way" the difference was amazing - the factory chain had vastly more sideways slop in it!!! After the rebuild, the engine produced twice the power on his dyno to a standard engine..... OK, still not much by modern standards but the car only weighs 507kg. It now sits at a steady (even a "motorway") 70mph without stress or drama, still returning 60mpg+, possibly the only Reliant-engined Kitten to be actually capable of doing so.

The reason they called me early was that they were unable to properly get in to the ECU, which is why they wanted to know if I (or anybody else) had been messing with it. When told no, not as far as I knew, plus I'd only had it a fortnight, they just said, OK we'll reset it then....

They did say that it was all fine now when they called back! My guess is some sort of hard reset cured the problem, but not being very conversant with these actual units (or automotive PLC's (programmable logic controllers) in general), I wouldn't know. I occasionally came across similar things on computers, servers and industrial PLC's before I retired. I was 50 years an electrical/electronic engineer the last 25 specialising in diagnosing and repairing (to component level) mostly high-end computing equipment, server farms and similar...

As regards servicing, I'm positively anal about this so rest assured it'll be regularly done.. Having covered over 600,000 miles in the Kitten and having got 160,000+ miles between engine rebuilds, I well know the value of regular oil and filter changes.

John
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Old 19-09-18, 07:37 PM   #10
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Your robin chain is very short though so the sideways slop would not really be a great issue for NORMAL use.

The chain on the prince engine is probably 4 times the length AND thinner than the reliant chain it also has to drive both camshafts in all honesty they are not up to the job even the so called upgraded ones !

Just trying to make you understand the reasons for the issues.
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