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(Post Link) post #1 of 6 Old 07-11-12 Thread Starter
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Advice on a possible purchase - new to Alfa

Hi all,

I've just come from a Rover 75 v6 (185000 miles so don't knock it!) and am looking for a new car.

I've stumbled across something I would never have considered before - a 1998 156 v6, 81000 miles with plenty of mot/tax to clear at a dealer. To be honest I was impressed with the build quality! No history but it has the look of a cared for car actually, good tyres evenly worn, all levels correct with clearly recent oil change and nothing really hanging off. Started instantly from cold, warmed up to steady temperature, clutch/gearbox feel fine. The engine sounded delicious!

Problems? Er yes. A tired sounding starter motor, and the big one - an injector light on the dashboard. The idle at times was a little unsteady and the engine sometimes hesitates when the gas is pressed.

I do my own repairs/servicing where poss, it's the only way I can run a car! I think 500 would buy it.

Any thoughts on what the problem could be, and is it worth a shout or should I run a mile?
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Worth a punt at 500-ish
The hesitation may be MAF related, always a good starting point IMHO
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(Post Link) post #3 of 6 Old 07-11-12 Thread Starter
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Any words of wisdom from the experts on here regarding the injector light?

Could this be relatively straightforward or a minefield? Car very nice and veeeeery tempting!

Many thanks.
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There's a whole list of what it could be, get the codes read and it'll tell you exactly what it is, 500 worth a punt, might be just a 40 lambda might be a 60 coil pack might be a 165 MAF to name just a few, you just won't know without getting the codes read.
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Worth a try. Get the codes read, it's a lot of car for 500... well worth it if it only needs a few bits 'n' pieces. Sluggish starter could just be low battery...

Let us know how you get on.
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Without history a cambelt change MUST be your first priority possibly even before fixing the warning light. Price the parts and special tools to do that before thinking any further or the cost of a specialist doing it for you.

Make sure you test drive it over bumpy roads and listen for suspension clunks front and rear. All suspension noises are fixable by a competent home mechanic but the front anti roll bar is a bit of a bugger to do at home because yopu have to drop the front subframe a couple of inches to get the roll bar out - Alfa attached it to the body above the subframe without space to get it out without lowering the subframe.

Front suspension noises:-
Squeak = top wishbones.
Clunk = bottom wishbones or if lucky drop links connecting roll bar to bottom wish bone.
Clunk felt under your feet is probably anti roll bar.

Check that all the windows work if they don't it will be the window winder mechanism and not the switches or fuses. Seizure is a very common problem.

Also not uncommon for the lights behind the three heater controls to blow. Owners don't get them replaced becauser it is a bit fiddly. Lots of "how toos" on here.

Make sure it has two keys. A 500 car needing a 300 key is not cheap. Do not think about getting a second hand one from ebay and re-programming as no-one that I know of has made that work yet. Make sure both keys lock and unlock the doors and start the car.

Have a good look underneath. It is quite rare but one or two of these root the floor.

A few pointers and after that the usual caveats about buying a second hand car.

If the engine is not good that is a huge bill so a long test drive watching coolant temperature and a good check afterwards for leaks and signs of mayo in the oil filler or oil in the water header.

Reference sluggish starter there are threads on here about problems with the speedo / rev counter consol causing a rear light to stay on. that could be flattening the battery. The fix is a new consol but that isn't hard to fit. Second hand ones should be reasonably cheap.

Last edited by kandlbarrett; 07-11-12 at 16:36.
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