I think these are the options, from reading this and similar threads. For me it's not geography but not being able to afford to have it done professionally for a month or two. On the other hand, working for several hours outside in UK winter is not something I want to do. Still at 80,000mls I am reluctant to drive the car without doing something.
Probably the most urgent, as it will halt the accumulation of carbon in the inlet and possibly buy a little extra time to deal with the flaps, but they could still fall off tomorrow
1. Blank off the EGR (1 plate) or remove it altogether (2 plates). This is cheap and easy. But!...
2. It seems that even if you leave the blanked-off EGR connected, the ECU will flag an error and warning light (is this right?). If removed entirely, it certainly will.
3. 2 has two solutions: either have it mapped out by a specialist like Autolusso, or use a cheater device to fool the ECU. Those can be got by post from http://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/tafmet?_trksid=p2047675.l2559
- less elegant than a proper remap and a kludge, but cheaper and more accessible.
Has to come off whatever you do. Not trivial because the high-pressure fuel pump has to be removed and that runs off the cambelt, so that has to be disturbed. Which means its only sensible to replace the belt, tensioner and waterpump at the same time. And yes, you should use timing locks.
1. Least cost/highest risk: clean and inspect the inlet to ensure the flaps are sound, and keep them if all OK. This seems unlikely and dangerous with the plastic-covered/metal-flap design on CF4, which by all accounts are a complete POS - the enclosed flap actuator mechanism is also rubbish and wears out, as do the flap pivots. If the pivots wear, the flaps can be stressed by friction against the port, and that could cause them to break off too. What on earth were they thinking?
2. Or replace with a brand-new inlet with new flaps. It seems that Fiat/Pierberg no longer make the plastic/metal-flap version, which perhaps tells us what a sh*tty re-design they were. It appears current manifolds are all metal and resemble the first version, with plastic flaps but improved pivots and actuator lever mechanism. However, they too will wear out in time, and plastic flaps also fail, but not with the same certainty of hideous engine damage. I am assuming this current inlet design can be retrofitted to CF4. If so, it seems a fairly safe bet in the medium term, but parts will cost ~£400 as you'll have to buy a new actuator motor as well.
3. Deflap your existing plastic metal-flap manifold. A few minutes with a Dremel should get rid of the spindles and flaps. Nobody seems to sell plugs for the resulting holes (?), but they can be TIG welded or something else figured out locally - the through-holes could be tapped and bolted perhaps, with threadlock. All the enclosed actuator gear can be junked, and perhaps the entire plastic part of the manifold can go in the bin. I believe the existing actuator motor needs to be left in place and reconnected to the loom. I expect that if you remove it, the ECU will throw a hissy fit.
I think. Please anyone, correct anything I have got wrong.