1.9 diesel variations - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Wave 1.9 diesel variations

Hi everybody,

I am about to buy a 156 SW 1.9 and not really sure which engine version to choose. I have read other threads and have not got a clear answer, so please let me know what should I look for, to avoid, and to expect on 1.9 diesels.

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The 16v is better as it has more power with no real downside regarding servicing costs and fuel. No 156s have the swirl flap engine so no worries there. Recent belts, water pump and clutches are desirable if the car has any history. If both new clutch and big service are needed then budget 1000. Thermostats fail, check the car reaches 90oC or you will have a 100 bill to fix. Generally, in my experience the mechanical components are excellent and can do stella miles but miss a service at your peril. There should be no turbo lag and no smoke although to the experienced there are some cheap fixes out there and a lack of power and smokiness rarely means new turbo time.

Biggest killer of 156 is rust. Check the rear floor pans. Mine also needed new front subframe. All can be fixed but again bills can quickly mount up.

The front suspension may clunk, squeak and creak. Repairs are relatively cheap but needed annoyingly frequently.

Basically, cheap to buy but make sure you leave enough in the bank for running costs.
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Originally Posted by dgmayhead View Post
The 16v is better as it has more power with no real downside regarding servicing costs and fuel. No 156s have the swirl flap engine so no worries there. Recent belts, water pump and clutches are desirable if the car has any history. If both new clutch and big service are needed then budget 1000. Thermostats fail, check the car reaches 90oC or you will have a 100 bill to fix. Generally, in my experience the mechanical components are excellent and can do stella miles but miss a service at your peril. There should be no turbo lag and no smoke although to the experienced there are some cheap fixes out there and a lack of power and smokiness rarely means new turbo time.

Biggest killer of 156 is rust. Check the rear floor pans. Mine also needed new front subframe. All can be fixed but again bills can quickly mount up.

The front suspension may clunk, squeak and creak. Repairs are relatively cheap but needed annoyingly frequently.

Basically, cheap to buy but make sure you leave enough in the bank for running costs.
Hi dg,

Thank you for your reply, yes i was planning on the 16V and yes i have read about he swirl flap with the GTs so it is good news 156 does not have that issue. is the timing belt on diesels same as TS? they have to be changed every 30,000? do they have the cam variator issue like the TS? and the oil leak of the cam variator solenoid. Is the ABS ecu same as the 147s which unsolder itself when it get too hot and that's that? Have you ever had any issues with glow plug or fuel filter?

Cheers
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The Diesels don't have a variator or a variator solenoid, but the 16v/20v do have a waterpump that seizes and snaps the cambelt...
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The Diesels don't have a variator or a variator solenoid, but the 16v/20v do have a waterpump that seizes and snaps the cambelt...
Hi David,

Thank you for your reply, I am new to diesels. Is there anything else I should look for in a 16V?

Cheers
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The 156 1,9 JTD 16v uses a similar cam belt set as the petrol engined version. But check when ordering that its for your model.
The official live of the cam belt kit is 3 years and or 37500 miles what ever comes first. I believe that the diesel engine is less liable than the petrols as it doesn't run that many revs as the petrols. I don't think the diesels have cam variator.
Many of the service items needed for the 156 are often shared with the 147s.
I had a 156 2,0 TS MY 1998 until it was 12 years and 135.000 miles old. I didn't have any real choking issues with it. None of the real expensive parts such as generator, steering pump, clutch, drive shafts, radiator needed changing. It had one exhaust, some parts in the front suspension, the wiper motor and connection and a battery once.
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Originally Posted by Erik Loye View Post
The 156 1,9 JTD 16v uses a similar cam belt set as the petrol engined version. But check when ordering that its for your model.
The official live of the cam belt kit is 3 years and or 37500 miles what ever comes first. I believe that the diesel engine is less liable than the petrols as it doesn't run that many revs as the petrols. I don't think the diesels have cam variator.
Many of the service items needed for the 156 are often shared with the 147s.
I had a 156 2,0 TS MY 1998 until it was 12 years and 135.000 miles old. I didn't have any real choking issues with it. None of the real expensive parts such as generator, steering pump, clutch, drive shafts, radiator needed changing. It had one exhaust, some parts in the front suspension, the wiper motor and connection and a battery once.
Hi Erik,

Tnx for replying, did you ever have any issues with turbo or pipes from the inter cooler?

Cheers
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The bottom turbo pipe is another relatively weak area, they have a tendency to split or go soft and balloon under pressure. There are a good few suppliers of better silicone versions which are a straight swap.

The upper pipe is thicker and generally harder wearing although there are better silicone ones available.

The air boxes can be a pain on the 156 as the screws rust and are difficult to get out and the air box is squeezed into the front left near the battery tray and changing air filters isn't that straightforward.

Their is a small filter in the oil line going to the turbo, its best to remove this as it can clog causing oil starvation to the turbo and killing it.

The other thing to check are the vacuum pipes that are linked to the turbo as they harden and crack and leak causing some problems with the vnt operation on the turbo.
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(Post Link) post #9 of 11 Old 14-09-16 Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by samsdads156jtd View Post
The bottom turbo pipe is another relatively weak area, they have a tendency to split or go soft and balloon under pressure. There are a good few suppliers of better silicone versions which are a straight swap.

The upper pipe is thicker and generally harder wearing although there are better silicone ones available.

The air boxes can be a pain on the 156 as the screws rust and are difficult to get out and the air box is squeezed into the front left near the battery tray and changing air filters isn't that straightforward.

Their is a small filter in the oil line going to the turbo, its best to remove this as it can clog causing oil starvation to the turbo and killing it.

The other thing to check are the vacuum pipes that are linked to the turbo as they harden and crack and leak causing some problems with the vnt operation on the turbo.
Hi Sam,

Thank you very much, really helpful material. I will try to take some pictures and post it once I have a chance.

Cheers mate
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"Tnx for replying, did you ever have any issues with turbo or pipes from the inter cooler?"
My 156 was petrol 2,0TS - no turbo.
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Originally Posted by Erik Loye View Post
"Tnx for replying, did you ever have any issues with turbo or pipes from the inter cooler?"
My 156 was petrol 2,0TS - no turbo.
Alright, tnx
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