supporting a bank
AO Silver Member
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: United Kingdom
County: West Sussex
I think my engine problem is sorted.
I dont want to tempt fate here, but after a long long time my engine is now running like a dream.
Just in case you havent seen my previous posts where I expressed my anxiety, I'll explain.
The car was making a chuff chuff sound and wheezing when I was working up through the gears, at about 1500 - 1800 rpm it was at its worst which just coincided with nice easy cruising. Also the engine sounded more like a Ford Escort diesel from the 80's. The car was blowing smoke under hard acceleration and there was an oily deposit in the exhaust pipe. Added to this I had poor fuel economy.
The problem did prove to be a bit of a head scratcher to my dealer, Monza Sport in Ashington, however, credit to them they stuck at it, never was there any suggestion of "thats a characteristic" or any other attempt to fob me off. No, they spent time looking at the car, I was able to talk with their head techy, discussing the problem, a great service.
So what was the problem? Well the first thing they did was to change the gasket/restrictor plate between the EGR and the manifold, it had only a small positive effect. Next they had the car for the whole day, checking every stage from air filter to manifold. They found that where the inlet hose to the turbo fixed, it wasnt properly, allowing air to be drawn in at the turbo. That did help, but the problem still was noticeable. Two weeks ago after further discussions, they changed the EGR valve. This has transformed the car! As I have done about 2000 miles since the fit, I can happily say its sorted, smooth quiet tractable, lovely. There is still a very slight wheez on occasions, but nothing that causes concern, in fact it is slowly disappearing.
My theory on the issue? The hose came off the turbo which allowed more air into the system than the MAF was sensing. So the ECU dumped in more fuel to compensate, this in turn created a dirty exhaust which required more regens, plus it was dumping exhaust gas back into the engine via the EGR at low revs, this partly clogged up the EGR so even after the problem was solved (hose on the turbo) the symptoms still persisted because the EGR was not working as it should.
Hope this helps others with similar problems. Out of interest I tried Shell V Power diesel, it has proved to be no better than regular quality fuel with Millers added, so future fill ups will be regular fuel and a dose of Millers.
Someone said to me, "so whats so special about an Alfa Romeo then?" I told him, "If you have to ask, you wont understand".
Driving Brera S 2.2, wife drives 939 Spider 2.2 and there is a 1972 Spider 2000 S2 in the garage for fun days.