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We recently bought a 308 1.4 XE (petrol) s/h and by the time we got it home we realised it had a serious issue with the engine. It was a private sale and no chance of a refund, though we got it cheap I think (and I guess we know why now). Anyway... the throttle response is horrid, it 'bounces' intermittantly, sometimes there's almost no power to accelerate, have to change gear and/or come off the revs a bit and re-apply. Car is drivable but a royal PITA to put up with and clearly this needs fixing. Otherwise the car is fine.

According to my regular mechanic the solenoid that controls the variable timing thingy (?) isn't working properly. Said the solenoid itself looked fine (didn't need cleaning) and tried to trace the wiring but couldn't see anything obviously wrong. He said it had very obviously been worked on before by someone else trying to deal with the same problem and they obviously gave up. So... he didn't know where the issue lies, and was reluctant to spend too much time on it without any detailed wiring/engine plans which he didn't have. He thought it was electrical, and could be 'anything' going back to the ECU itself. Which apparently is dead expensive to replace. He also didn't have the right diagnostics for the engine, just the basics.

Does this sound like a problem anyone's faced and had fixed before? Should I track down a "Peugeot specialist" if there is such a thing? (that isn't an actual Peugeot dealer, coz we don't want to pay 'dealer prices').
Hope my description is clear, but it's hard to describe accurately. We're willing to spend a bit of money fixing it, but we want to be sure it will be fixed. Don't want to drop ££££s on it and just have some mechanic shrug and say 'well, I tried...' and leave us way out of pocket for nothing.


Would be grateful for any advice. We live in Lancs (Blackburn area) and if anyone knows a good Peugeot specialist or good independent garage with experience of 308s that would be good. My regular mechanic is a top guy, but can't help (and didn't charge me much either, since he couldn't help).
 

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Got it booked in for 'full' diagnostics on Friday. We'll see what (if anything...) comes of that.
 

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So what happened?

The 1.4 engine - designed to use oil as the internals are 'loose' to increase fuel economy.

Timing will be off if the engine oil is low - the valve opens - but there is not enough pressure to change the timing.
 

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It turned out that the solenoid had a connector in the wiring loom that was all corroded. They cleaned it up and told me to run the car for a few days to re-set the ECU since it was disconnected from the battery. Been doing that and it's running much much better. It's been fascinating seeing how each time I take it out, it runs better than before. Basically about 97% better now. Just a hint of roughness if I give it some welly in 2nd or 3rd uphill, but even that's almost gone. £59 well spent... I was afraid it might cost hundreds. The garage also fixed to other minor issues for free too. Very very happy bunny!

And thanks for your suggestion, gonna check the oil this weekend. There is an 'oil ok' indicator that lights up on startup, but we were advised that the car may go through a lot of oil as normal and to check levels every month. My older 307 has an oil level indicator but this doesn't other than that 'oil ok' sign.
 

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We recently bought a 308 1.4 XE (petrol) s/h and by the time we got it home we realised it had a serious issue with the engine. It was a private sale and no chance of a refund, though we got it cheap I think (and I guess we know why now). Anyway... the throttle response is horrid, it 'bounces' intermittantly, sometimes there's almost no power to accelerate, have to change gear and/or come off the revs a bit and re-apply. Car is drivable but a royal PITA to put up with and clearly this needs fixing. Otherwise the car is fine.

According to my regular mechanic the solenoid that controls the variable timing thingy (?) isn't working properly. Said the solenoid itself looked fine (didn't need cleaning) and tried to trace the wiring but couldn't see anything obviously wrong. He said it had very obviously been worked on before by someone else trying to deal with the same problem and they obviously gave up. So... he didn't know where the issue lies, and was reluctant to spend too much time on it without any detailed wiring/engine plans which he didn't have. He thought it was electrical, and could be 'anything' going back to the ECU itself. Which apparently is dead expensive to replace. He also didn't have the right diagnostics for the engine, just the basics.

Does this sound like a problem anyone's faced and had fixed before? Should I track down a "Peugeot specialist" if there is such a thing? (that isn't an actual Peugeot dealer, coz we don't want to pay 'dealer prices').
Hope my description is clear, but it's hard to describe accurately. We're willing to spend a bit of money fixing it, but we want to be sure it will be fixed. Don't want to drop ££££s on it and just have some mechanic shrug and say 'well, I tried...' and leave us way out of pocket for nothing.


Would be grateful for any advice. We live in Lancs (Blackburn area) and if anyone knows a good Peugeot specialist or good independent garage with experience of 308s that would be good. My regular mechanic is a top guy, but can't help (and didn't charge me much either, since he couldn't help).
Remove the vvt wire (unplug) it and drive a test drive
 
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