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Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Fri Aug 18, 2017 10:51 am

At least you can shift gears :wink:

You don't mention anything about how the starter behaves? Grounding points all good?

I suggest you make a video where you try and start the car, could help pointing us in some direction...
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 11:05 am

Yeah, that's the only 'silver lining' as they say!

The starter seems fine, the engine cranks over perfectly. The starter was replaced last year.
I've checked the grounds and cleaned them, and as far as I can tell, they're all reconnected where they should be. Perhaps I'm wrong, I know I'll need to check every wire in the engine bay. It really doesn't help that my Q4's wiring has been modified in the past, mainly to accommodate the old LPG system.

I recall a couple of months ago the Q4 wouldn't start because the engine ECU wasn't earthed properly - I haven't touched this since I originally fixed the grounding problem, after which the car ran just fine. I don't think this is the problem, but I'm racking my brain here...

Interestingly, I referred to my Q4 electrical connectors manual and found that the connectors for the camshaft sensor, one of the knock sensors and the throttle potentiometer were mixed up! I took pictures before I disconnected all the wiring (before removing the engine) so I used these pictures when reconnecting the wiring once the engine was back in. This means I put the connectors back to how they were before I removed the engine. This is the only time I've disconnected these wires during my ownership of the car, so I guess these connectors have been wrong since I've owned it? Yet the car still ran ok and drove well, despite not feeling as quick as I expected. Hmmmm...
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 11:06 am

I don't know if a video would show you anything really Alfan - basically, the car behaves like it's going to start, but just won't fire up!
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 11:07 am

If i ever come to sell this car, I hope the next owner doesn't see this thread... 11 pages of continuous work on the car doesn't really make my Q4 look too good :lol:
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Fri Aug 18, 2017 11:34 am

They would know that the car has gotten a lot of attention :D

So the starter is behaving as expected? Is it the Motronic3.7.1? Then I can only suggest to get the diagnostic SW on it and read out possible codes.
1994 Alfa Romeo 164 Q4 Proteo Rosso 535.000km
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 3:00 pm

That's true, this thread is now approaching 21k views... I think that's quite a lot for a single-make, single-model forum!

Yes I think the starter is fine, it cranks the engine exactly as before (when the engine used to work...)
Also yes, my car uses Motronic 3.7.
I've just been out (in fact, I'm outside in the car as I type this) and connected the diagnostic software to the car. To my surprise, there were only 2 error codes - there used to be 4 consistently. I wonder if the mixed up connectors were to blame for that?

Anyway, the two error codes were the following:

Constant power supply
Throttle potentiometer (this code is always present).

I cleared the codes, closed the program and disconnected the wires for the diagnostics. I then tried to start the engine once more; still nothing.
After 10 minutes I reconnected the diagnostic cables and rebooted the program - no error codes present. I double checked this to be sure, the program still says no error codes.

So... any ideas? If the ECU has no codes stored but the engine still won't fire up, that makes me think the earths may be at fault.
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 3:16 pm

Also, with the ignition switched on the idle control valve makes an audible buzzing sound. If you put your hand on it, you can feel it vibrating. I'm fairly sure that's not right either...
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Fri Aug 18, 2017 6:44 pm

My best bet is that you need to go through the connections and make sure all grounds are probably hooked up. Since the error codes are gone, most likely sensor and units are correctly plugged in...
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Sat Aug 19, 2017 3:19 pm

Another day, another discovery.

With the help of my father this afternoon we checked over all the connections and earths. The car still wouldn't start.
We checked the earths for the ECUs, most importantly the motronic - still wouldn't start.
We sprayed some easy-start into the intake and the car fired up briefly each time we did this.

We then checked the fuel delivery at the rail. I previously had only checked the supply hose for fuel delivery to the rail at good pressure, I didn't think I really needed to check the return hose. However, with the return hose loosened from the fuel rail and the engine cranking over, there was no fuel coming out of the fuel rail at all. Not even a drop. We removed the fuel pressure regulator and it seems to be completely blocked. I sprayed some cleaning lubricant into it and after a few minutes some dark brown fluid began to (very slowly) run out of the regulator. It seems to be vacuum operated with an internal diaphragm.

So, my current theory is as follows. I think the regulator has been partially blocked for some time, which would explain why the Q4 never felt as fast/responsive as I expected, particularly at higher revs - it has always felt like it was 'running out of steam' higher up the rev range. This will be the point at which the engine requires the most fuel, and a blocked regulator would reduce the flow of fuel, so this makes sense. Then, while the engine has been removed the regulator has dried up due to a lack of fuel and, thanks partly to the gunk built up inside, it has therefore seized internally, so it is now stopping the injectors from receiving the required amount of fuel to allow the engine to fire up.

It's a theory, but it seems very likely to be he cause. I really don't know what else it could be at this stage.
I'm currently seeking a fuel pressure regulator (Alfa 60611308, Bosch 0280160235) for a reasonable price. I'm also thinking about the possibilities of an aftermarket adjustable regulator, but I'll probably just stay with the OEM part for now.
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Sat Aug 19, 2017 4:18 pm

That is a good find and fits with the symptoms you have had. I hope this will make the car start and go as it should :)

The Bosch number indicates that it is used for different cars. I found this one:
http://www.daytonagblimited.co.uk/fuel- ... 60235.html
1994 Alfa Romeo 164 Q4 Proteo Rosso 535.000km
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Fri Sep 08, 2017 12:43 pm

So, the fun and games continue!

I realised the fuel pressure regulator wasn't at fault, so I cancelled the order.
It turns out this was all my fault... :oops:
I had removed a bunch of wiring that entered part of the old LPG system. It was some kind of electrical box, it had been unplugged since I have owned the car so I assumed removing it wouldn't cause any problems. It turns out the wires entering the box were also connected into the injector wiring, so I had basically removed part of the circuit, thus the injectors were never going to work. You live and learn...

With help from my father (who knows about electrics - I have very basic knowledge here) the wiring was repaired and she fired straight up :D

But now... a new problem! Starting is fine, and the idle seems ok, but most of the time as soon as I touch the throttle the engine stalls. Even the slightest press of the pedal will do this.
Also, on the occasions when the engine doesn't cut out and will rev properly, it will only do so in neutral. If I enter first gear and try to drive forward I really have to keep the revs up otherwise the engine stalls again. The car does drive though which is a relief.

To my knowledge, the throttle isn't that complex - there's the cable that controls the opening of the valve, then there's the TPS on the side and the min/max switch on the back. At the moment, I suspect the TPS might be causing problems, though I already replaced it not that long ago?

I have a loose connector in the loom too, it's a two pin connector with a white/green and white/black off the top of my head. My Q4 wiring schematics don't seem to show it but it definitely looks like a factory piece of wiring, ie not added in by a previous owner. It comes off the main loom for the injectors and coil packs.

The Q4's MOT will run out at the end of this month. Great :roll:
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:59 am

It isn't easy when the car has been modified earlier, but a good find!

I assume there are no error codes now. So here are my comments:

- Have you connected the lambda probes correctly, not switched them round? My garage did that once and it ran, but used a lot of petrol!
- Have you disconnected the air mass meter?
- Have you tried using the throttle at the engine, i.e. not using the pedal?
- Have you tried disconnecting injectors one by one to see if behaviour changes?
- Have you checked connectors for coolant temp? That is probably not causing this, but it could be more than one thing acting up...

Loose connector... A photo might help, as well as a video of the behaviour. That is all I can think of, based on your description.
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Fri Sep 15, 2017 4:05 pm

Thanks for the suggestions as always Alfan.
I checked various connectors but didn't find anything that would cause a problem.
I have had this week off work so I've fixed several other problems, including a power steering leak.
Yesterday I was finally able to drive the car for the first time since May... :)
It was good, but there were obviously some issues remaining. The speedometer didn't work and the car ran a bit rough and was low on power.

As of today, she drives much better! The speedometer problem was a loose connector, while the rough running and stalling was caused by a bad coil pack on cylinder number 4. I fitted a good spare I have, and the car runs so much better now, and doesn't cut out any more (touch wood!).

So, the car is back on the road and running well :) I am so relieved! However, there are still issues to fix; for example, the engine hesistates quite severely under full throttle. You can really feel it when you put your foot down hard on the accelerator. It just doesn't seem to respond like it should. It sounds good though ;) does anyone have any suggestions?
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Sat Sep 16, 2017 11:55 pm

Well, tonight on the way back from visiting friends, the inevitable happened. The Q4 became stuck in gear, this time third gear.

So, what to do now? I was already fed up of fixing this car before the recent problems. Yet, I still spent almost 5 months fixing it. Now, just a day after I thought the car was fixed, once again it's broken. Sigh
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby MikeCZ » Sun Sep 17, 2017 2:25 pm

Hold on, don't give up! It's a bad time for 164s, mine is also ill :cry: but we have to fight to get those cars back on the road, they're worth it :)
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Sun Sep 17, 2017 5:48 pm

You're right, I was just feeling really fed up with it last night.
I feel better today! I might have already sourced a replacement gearbox, so maybe all is not lost. :)
What's wrong with yours - anything I can help with?
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby MikeCZ » Sun Sep 17, 2017 6:27 pm

I know your feeling, here is my struggle: viewtopic.php?f=5&t=1816&p=12986#p12986
Hehe, I have also spare gearbox ordered which I will keep for "worse days" :D
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Sun Sep 17, 2017 6:51 pm

That is a bummer with the gearbox!

However, what makes you think that it is the gearbox? I cannot recall the details written earlier in this thread... ;)

I would think that it is the clutch and/or gearshift mechanism, that is causing the problem.

You know how great the car can drive, don't forget that when it kicks back at you 8)
1994 Alfa Romeo 164 Q4 Proteo Rosso 535.000km
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:41 pm

Mike CZ - Wow, that's quite an event you've experienced!
Regarding the starter motor - was it definitely turning when you were trying to test the last cylinder? It sounds very strange that it would turn, without turning the engine via the flywheel. I know with my Q4 there is a starter inhibitor relay, I10 I think it is.

Alfan - I wish that was the case, as that would be an easier (and cheaper) fix! However, the car is permanently stuck in third gear. The clutch behaves as normal, the gear lever just will not come out of third gear! I should add that on the way to my friend's house, before the gearbox broke again, the gear changes were becoming rather stiff just like before...this was after the gearbox had been repaired, with fresh fluid before and after the rebuild. Then on the way back home, that's when the real problem occurred.

Aahhhh... one day I will get some kind of reward for all the work that goes into this car :lol:
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:42 pm

Btw, Alfan - or anybody else that might know - do you have any details for the power steering filter? It's not listed on ePer and I can't find any part numbers anywhere....
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:47 am

60606141 for the filter
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby MikeCZ » Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:43 am

Yes, quite an event :lol: I could hear electric motor spinning with exactly the same sound like the starter has when I tested it out of the car. Anyway, I don't have much other ideas what could be wrong here.
As for the relay (yes, it's I10) I can't think how it could be broken and at the same time turn the starter. My idea is that the starter pinion won't pop out properly and won't engage with the flywheel teeth.
And sorry for bloating your thread :oops:
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Tue Sep 19, 2017 1:09 pm

Alfan wrote:60606141 for the filter

Thanks Alfan. Even with the part number it seems they're a little tricky to find.

MikeCZ wrote:Yes, quite an event :lol: I could hear electric motor spinning with exactly the same sound like the starter has when I tested it out of the car. Anyway, I don't have much other ideas what could be wrong here.
As for the relay (yes, it's I10) I can't think how it could be broken and at the same time turn the starter. My idea is that the starter pinion won't pop out properly and won't engage with the flywheel teeth.
And sorry for bloating your thread :oops:

Hmmmm that does sound strange, the only other thing I can think of is that the teeth on the starter motor had stripped/worn, but surely if that's the case the starter would sound very different as it would turn with much more freely without the resistance of the flywheel. You must be right about the pinion not engaging - what else could it be?

You're probably right about the relay too, I think it only controls whether or not the engine can fire up. It probably has no effect on the starter motor turning. Just a thought!

No need to apologise, it's all good discussion :)


After considering the situation for a few days, I'm now thinking of fixing the Q4 again and then, if it's running well, maybe selling it with a fresh MOT certificate. I need a 'main' car that's a bit more dependable while still being a bit of fun, and probably cheaper to run. I'm thinking of something like a 156 2.5 V6. Don't get me wrong, I don't really want to sell the Q4 but I need to start being a bit more reasonable.
Consider this: I currently have the Q4 which is broken again, the Maserati which is going nowhere because I keep having to fix the Alfa, and a 75 Cloverleaf that's waiting for work too. I've recently finished my degree so I'll need to start looking for work soon, so something has to give way really.

I don't know how much I would ask for the Q4 if I do sell it. Obviously it's very rare, and has lots of rare parts and some custom parts. It's also had lots of work done already. However, it needs some paintwork and some fine-tuning. I would also keep the Zender Milano wheels unless I got a very good offer for them.

Hmmm.
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby HaydnW92 » Wed Oct 25, 2017 10:54 am

Time for an update on the situation with my 164 Q4.

I've sold the Zender Milano wheels and the Recaro seats separately to raise some funds so I can buy another car, which I'm hoping to do this weekend. My Q4 now has standard leather seats and some 17" Multispoke Alfa wheels which suit it quite well!

As of this weekend I'll list my Q4 for sale on eBay with a 99p start. If anyone from here is interested in bidding I can allow bids from people across Europe I think? The car will need to be trailered away of course. I've not exported a car before so I'm not sure what's involved but I'm sure it won't be that difficult.

In fact, I'd rather it went to another country, then I wouldn't have to see it at sjows and realise what a mistake it was to sell it...

I'll post a link here when the car is listed.

Haydn
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Re: Alfa 164 Q4 3.5 'Savali' progress thread

Postby Alfan » Wed Oct 25, 2017 5:33 pm

:(

I guess you didn't get further with the transmission then... Have you tried selling it via different channels, e.g. AROC before ebay?

Good luck with the sale, though I hope you change your mind again... :|
1994 Alfa Romeo 164 Q4 Proteo Rosso 535.000km
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