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Right everyone! as far as I know I can't stick my post at the top of this thread because obviously its already been posted and a new merged post will only be added to the bottom so ive had to hijack this post slightly lol

Anyway alot of people have idling/hesitation problems with their MK4s so as Daz has already done quite a bit of fault finding on his 8V MK4 I thought I would use this thread so we can knock heads about all MK4 idling/hesitation problems. Anyway if you are going to illustrate your posts with pictures pls make sure you either back them up or move them to a server where they arnt going to be deleted as this thread could be running quite some time :Cool2:

CavWebmaster


BEFORE YOU DO ANYTHING, IF YOU HAVE ANY SORT OF:

Idling problem - Erratic idling and maybe dropping low enough to cut out
Hesitation or holding back when accelerating
Kangarooing - jerking usually when in a high gear and a lowish speed

Astra MK4s are prone to gunking up the throttle body with oil vapours which when cooled goes hard. Faults of cutting out, lumpy idling and kangooring when driving can be attributed to a manked up throttle body and if not checked first a garage could rip you off big time as It can seem like an electrical fault (Plugs, leads, EGR, Air Flow meter)
Its a 10 min job for yourself to check as all you need to remove is jubilee clip that secures the air flow pipe (the one that come from your airbox) to the throttle body and look inside. Mk4s for some reason can use a **** load of oil with no smoke and it will pass its emissions fine. If you have a mk4 thats a few years old (like mine is) and have any sort of engine running problems i would check the throttle body before you do anything as when mine was running really badly the throttle body was absolutely caked in hard oil. Once I had removed the throttle body (mine was far to caked to clean on the car so see your manual if you intend to clean off the car) and totally cleaned out the TB it ran like a dream and only cost the price for a tin of cleaner spray :)

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Hello all

This is a long post, so settle down with a Cuppa and I hope it may help someone, someday.

I think over the last few days I have read nearly every post in my attempt to find and fix a fault on my recently bought astra.

After collecting the car from Cambridge and setting off down the A1 to the south coast the car seemed to be running "rough" with hesitation evident when "in the cruise". Then I hit the M25 roadworks. 'Oops, I stalled it'. Ooops, again? I don't think so. It stalled itself.

Temp showed Normal

No Lights, temp/oil/ECU

OK, plod on and get her home.... Fuel consumption also seemed a bit heavy, but this was my first Vauxhall....

Investigation starts:

1. Breathers - All ok, clear.
2. Intake air leaks. - none
3. Air Filter - Ahhhh. BLACK.... changed (£8), test drive. Same dodgy idle and acceleration
4. OK, I can do this. Search the net for help. Found this forum and started reading.
5. No point in reading ECU as no light seen. (error)
6. Clean Idle control stepper motor. - Idle now stable, no more stalls, but still hisitation on acceleration. We go on...
7. Disconnected O2 sensor - Ahhh... that's better, idle ok and pulls better, replace with new O2 sensor (£39)
8. Drove well for about 10 miles, then back came the symptoms.
9. Check and changed Plugs (£18) - still the same
10. Cleaned all fuel areas - Thorough to the letter - still the same.
11. Back to the forum - OK, EGR perhaps? Cleaned - same.. Do I buy a new one? Damn, £70... oh well, got the car cheap so go for it. - Same symptoms again.
12. Read that it could be the Temperature sensor - OK, £11, in for a penny...(lots of them) - result... nope, same hesitation...
13. Rechecked all of the above. I am now a master at this.... or am I?
14. OK, forum tell me it could be the MAP sensor. This time none in stock at local Vaux dealer, so down to scrappy... Yep.. £8.81 (bargain) But, still no change.
15. Do an ECU reset, lets see if it needs it. Memory cleared, not that I had checked it. (error)
16. So, what more can I do? The only improvement was the stepper motor clean which made the idle 100%.... But the forums are also telling me to get a new one.... OMG... another £75, and no guarantees.... OK, last time I go into that parts shop...

YES, YES, YES.

Hesitation Gone, idle perfect..... I am soooo good... NOT !!!

I bet if I had read some codes from the ECU I would have seen the Stepper Motor error, but oh no, I just cleared All Previous Error codes didn't I.

Spent perhaps £130 I didn't need to spend and got through perhaps £30 of petrol road testing it.

This is posted for those like me who think they KNOW what's wrong and for general information. The ECU is a smart bit of kit, USE IT. READ IT. BELIEVE IT.
 

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digidaz said:
Hello all

This is a long post, so settle down with a Cuppa and I hope it may help someone, someday.

I think over the last few days I have read nearly every post in my attempt to find and fix a fault on my recently bought astra.

After collecting the car from Cambridge and setting off down the A1 to the south coast the car seemed to be running "rough" with hesitation evident when "in the cruise". Then I hit the M25 roadworks. 'Oops, I stalled it'. Ooops, again? I don't think so. It stalled itself.

Temp showed Normal

No Lights, temp/oil/ECU

OK, plod on and get her home.... Fuel consumption also seemed a bit heavy, but this was my first Vauxhall....

Investigation starts:

1. Breathers - All ok, clear.
2. Intake air leaks. - none
3. Air Filter - Ahhhh. BLACK.... changed (£8), test drive. Same dodgy idle and acceleration
4. OK, I can do this. Search the net for help. Found this forum and started reading.
5. No point in reading ECU as no light seen. (error)
6. Clean Idle control stepper motor. - Idle now stable, no more stalls, but still hisitation on acceleration. We go on...
7. Disconnected O2 sensor - Ahhh... that's better, idle ok and pulls better, replace with new O2 sensor (£39)
8. Drove well for about 10 miles, then back came the symptoms.
9. Check and changed Plugs (£18) - still the same
10. Cleaned all fuel areas - Thorough to the letter - still the same.
11. Back to the forum - OK, EGR perhaps? Cleaned - same.. Do I buy a new one? Damn, £70... oh well, got the car cheap so go for it. - Same symptoms again.
12. Read that it could be the Temperature sensor - OK, £11, in for a penny...(lots of them) - result... nope, same hesitation...
13. Rechecked all of the above. I am now a master at this.... or am I?
14. OK, forum tell me it could be the MAP sensor. This time none in stock at local Vaux dealer, so down to scrappy... Yep.. £8.81 (bargain) But, still no change.
15. Do an ECU reset, lets see if it needs it. Memory cleared, not that I had checked it. (error)
16. So, what more can I do? The only improvement was the stepper motor clean which made the idle 100%.... But the forums are also telling me to get a new one.... OMG... another £75, and no guarantees.... OK, last time I go into that parts shop...

YES, YES, YES.

Hesitation Gone, idle perfect..... I am soooo good... NOT !!!

I bet if I had read some codes from the ECU I would have seen the Stepper Motor error, but oh no, I just cleared All Previous Error codes didn't I.

Spent perhaps £130 I didn't need to spend and got through perhaps £30 of petrol road testing it.

This is posted for those like me who think they KNOW what's wrong and for general information. The ECU is a smart bit of kit, USE IT. READ IT. BELIEVE IT.
Your loss is everyone with the same problems gain, unfortunately for you. Ive got a similar problem on my 1.816v MK4 Astra with kangarooing and stalling. When its first started up the auto choke makes it idle at just above 1000 RPM but this drops off way before its warm. When I come to a stop and take it out of gear the revs drop to 500 RPM, then yoyo back upto around 900 (although when it drops to 500 RPM the lights dim briefly it doesnt usually stall but sometimes it does) It drives fine when in this state but I do wonder if its gonna drop low enough to stall but i find that when my steering is turned at low revs it stalls quite alot. Also sometimes when im coming to a stop it drops to 900 RPM and doesn't yoyo at all BUT when changing gear it feels like there is a misfire and its not a fluid change.

Im hoping I don't have to spend a fortune finding out this problem cos money is tight and im equally hoping that someone else has had a similar problem and sorted it out.
Ste
 

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did you have any bother with the EGR valve bolts? I had thought about giving mine a clean out but the bilts were solid and did'nt want to risk sheering them. (if its working Leave it alone)
 

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Further to my previous entry regarding cleaning the EGR valve, it did return.

Following which then I cleaned the throttle valve. You know, all the black crap that accumulates in the intake where the butterfly valve closes (the breather and canister vents seemed clear). After which I could then see light through the small gap around the butterfly when in the closed position. Anyway, car runs perfectly now. Hopefully it'll be for a longer period than when I cleaned the EGR valve!!!!
 

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I also cleaned out my throttle body housing as it was caked with black sludgy oil. After removing 4 pipes, 1 connector and 4 bolts I was able to remove the throttle body from the manifold and inspect it. My first job was to remove the 2 bolts that attach the butterfly flap to its pivot arm, open the throttle and remove flap. This made cleaning up the throttle body, unclogging the 2 air holes and then cleaning the flap much easier. My 16v 1.8 now runs as sound as a pound and actually runs alot better than when i bought it so its all good :Cool2: Rather worrying is the litre of oil it consumes in 2 weeks but it doesn't smoke in the slightest or increase emissions :mmmm (although I have read that these engines use alot of oil anyway)
Ste
 

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I've had the same problem with poor performance, fuel economy and random cutting out. The engine management sign was the only indication as to what it could be. I took it to the vauxhall garage and they diagnosed it for £70!!!!!! It needed a new Coil Pack, Spark Plugs and an Oil change. Now that the problem has been fixed, the car is running fine, with non of the symptoms specified above.

Cheers,

Nick
 

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Forget what I said before, the problems back!!!! Engine management light flashed briefly on the journey home, then the car cut out as i pulled into the drive. Couldnt get it started again. Engine is turning over fine but it wont fire and start, madness!!! Garage is pickin it up this morning!

The plot thickens!!!!

cheers

Nick
 

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I am 1 month down the line of having the stall/hesitation/cut-out problem and have been using my local garage to determine what the problem is at very little cost so far. I finally persuaded my mechanic to call in a favour from an old mate (who works for a Vauxhall dealer) to get some info on what the problem could be.

We've unearthed some surprising admisions from Vauxhall which have not been made public and are seemingly just fixed without the owners knowledge by Vauxhall dealers during regular service. My local garage is not a Vauxhall dealership, however, hence why we think I have come across the problem - don't know if that holds true for everyone else here.

The solution seems to be (for me I hope anyway, car booked in tomorrow), to either remove the EGR from the system or put a small bracket on the existing EGR in order to force it to stay open i.e. prevent problems when it gets stuck closed (I've had that issue previously too). The bit you need a Vauxhall dealer for is to update your ECU firmware/software such that the engine can now operate cleanly without the EGR in place.

As I said, this is a known problem/solution to Vauxhall service so if you probe your local dealer you will probably get them to admit to it, failing that just take it in and get it done.
 

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graham_alton said:
I am 1 month down the line of having the stall/hesitation/cut-out problem and have been using my local garage to determine what the problem is at very little cost so far......
Arrived back home this morning after what seems to be a relatively positive experience. In and out of the garage in just over 30 minutes after they did what they call a "Re-flash" which is pretty much exactly what I described earlier.

I am £38.34 GBP worse off now, but the car is idling better already and drove home perfectly. The 15 mile journed back home clearly isn't a fool-proof test but it does seem to have cleared up some niggles and I hope it fixes the main issue too. I'll try to remember to post back here after I've driven it for a while!
 

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I have covered nearly 300 miles in my car now and that hasn't happened at any point during the past month so fingers crossed I'm sorted now.

I would really recommend you go get the ECU reflashed as I did (cost £38 for me) as this will bring you up to the latest firmware level and disable the EGR if you ask for that particular flash to be done. Definately go for this if all you're getting in the ECU log are EGR errors. It seems worth it to get this done anyway as you may prevent future problem(s) by stepping around any EGR issues now. It seems stupid that a problem of this nature can be fixed without replacing any parts but I guess that's the way cars are going as they get more software based these days.


My car is now running a lot better while driving, idling at lower revs and all sign of the hesitation and stalling have gone. I'm doing an MPG test at the moment and it's looking like my economy is back to what I would expect (somewhere between 37-39 MPG, combined for an 8 valve) as well.

Good luck!
Graham
 

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Fixed the stalling problem etc etc

I have a post in another thread on this. I bit the bullet and took my 2001 Mk4 8v Astra into my local Vauxhall dealer as a private garage hadn't fixed the problem and I was out of pocket big time afterwards. Surprise - they fixed it free of charge as apparently it's a "common fault" on this car so Vauxhall pick up the tab. There is a major problem with the software in the EMU and they re-programmed it. I got the impression that this was standard practice and something they were well used to !! I laid out more cash a few weeks later and had it serviced and MOTd there and it's running like a beaut now - totally different animal. Whether all the dealers will do this free of charge I can't say but mine did and I'm still in shock !!!!! I really love the car but I was on the point of getting shot until they fixed the prob.
This kind of thing isn't restricted to Vauxhall as Ford is as bad if not worse and so is Landrover with its Freelander.
 

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Just thought I'd pop back in here with some final words....

I have now done around 500 miles since having the fix I mentioned above. It does seem to depend on which Vauxhall dealer you go to as to whether you get this for free or if they make a relatively small charge for the work. My car is back to it's usual fuel usage having taken a reading during the 500 miles, giving me a figure of 38.5MPG. This really does seem to be problem solved and as I've already said, it's definately worth doing as it will probably fix the stall/hesitation problem and even if it doesn't it's a cheap bit of work to get done which may prevent future issues for you and your car!

Thanks to everyone in here for all the great posts and the help. I hope by writing about my experience I have returned the favour :)

Graham
 

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What is stepper motor??????

I used to do I little bit of work in a garage so Im clued up with motors but I have never heard of a stepper motor!! Is there another name for this or what does it do? where is it located?:rolleyes:
Any help anyone can give me woudl be a great help!

I think that this is the pornlem I am having, these are symptoms, what do you think?

  • slightly high fuel consumption
  • hesitation on throttle response, almost seems to bog down.
.

Seconf thing is: On the internal display above the sterio if you push the top and bottom buttons together I get three messages, F 12, F 95 and F 171, does anyone know what these are??

Cheers Guys
 

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Kevo6544 said:
...I have never heard of a stepper motor!! Is there another name for this or what does it do? where is it located?:rolleyes:
Any help anyone can give me woudl be a great help!
The stepper moter is also known as the Idle control valve, its located on the front of the throttle body somewhere. I thought that was the problem on mine, so i bought another from a spares shop (2nd hand). Its still no different and i dont know whether ive bought a dud or not!

It appears I am experiencing the same problem as everyone else except one thing... I left it and left it until it worked no more... We managed to get it firing last night after a week of stressful fault finding, while it was warm we did a compression check... it came out slightly low but all cylinders were the same, so not a gasket problem. It fired nicely and I gave it a test drive, still sluggish but working! However my luck ended and it packed in again later on.

Since it died (the first time) we've change:
Throttle body (inc idle control valve)
Distributor cap & Rotor Arm
HT leads
Spark plugs
Ignition coil
MAP sensor

We've checked the timing also, and thats all ok.

It turns over ok, but just doesn't fire. If it does strike up, it shakes like a sh*tting dog as if 1 or 2 cylinders aren't running and then dies seconds later. My patience is wearing thin with this car, if its not working by sunday, ill be laying it to rest in my local river I think...

One more thing... I noticed a slight smell of sulphur while i was trying to start it at dinner time... Is it my cat causing this, if so is it a problem?

Does anyone have any suggestions to try? What is this ERG valve? what does it do?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Dez
 

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Dez I know you said you have tried a new coil but unless yours is a 2.0 16v engine they don't have them anymore on the Ecotecs. It's called a coil pack and TBH yours sounds like it's not right. Was the replacement a new one? or a second hand one?

The EGR valve is a device which measures the amount of unburnt hydro carbons, it then opens and allows these gases to be reburnt in the firing stroke. It also apparently increases the temperature of the firing so the engine produces less nitros oxides I've read somewhere. Whatever they are they aren't good for the engine. However over time the EGR valve gets coated in gunge and eventually it tends to stick open and really upsets the running of the engine. Sometimes it will trip the EML on the dash but not always. Solution is to remove it and give it a good clean with some carb cleaner. Depends on whcih engine you've got as to where it's located and whether it has one. The Z18XE doesn't have one but the X18XE1 does and is down on the right hand side of the engine just below where the head and barrels meet. The 1.6 engines one is located under the engine cover and around the inlet manifold area from what I've read. It looks like a small tower with an electrical connection on the top, held on by 2 or 3 torx bolts.

If cleaning it helps then consider buying a new one as they do tend to gunge up again quite quickly and a new one is much better.
 

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The coil was a second hand one my dad bought to try. Ill get a new one over the course of the weekend. My engine number is cn14zn if that helps... 1.4 single point inj. 8v.

Thanks for the advice, we'll have a crack at it tonight....

Have a good weekend all.

Dez
 

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Cheers for the link Oddjob.

No i haven't tried cleaning the EGR yet, but for the price I may aswell eaby it.

Oh and by the way..... she's started cutting out whilst idling now ... sods law. Aahh, it's only money anywayz :lmao:

Keep smiling,

Lecky:2guns
 

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Shame you ain't local to me mate, I'd have let you try the new coil pack on just to test it. It is the same as the 1.6 one I've just checked.

The seller on the e-bay link sells those EGR valves all the time, mark him as a favourite as he'll have another up for sale soon.
 
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