Alfa Romeo Forum banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,421 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I call my AR 156 Alfenia. She is my *Black Beauty*. I purchased her on Feb 5th 2005, so I now have her 3 months. Its been turbulent times.

History
She was Reg'd March 2000 to a Hair Shampoo Co, if you have seen/know me you'd understand the irony in that. Her 2nd owner was a private owner & had her for 2+ years. She is a Nero Black 2.0L T/S, with A/c, e/s/r, 4 elec windows, dark green Velour Seating, with 16" *Sportivo* alloys. 205/55 x 16" Firestones on the front & new ContiContactSport on the rear.

Test Drive
Prior to buying her I had taken 2 test drives. Both were on 2ndary roads, checking for squeaks & rattles, that ALL AR's are famous for. She didn't make a sound. I didn't drive or attempt to drive the crap out of her during any of these test drives as I firmly believe it is not necessary to do. In hind sight I had noticed that she was not a quick as I had imaged she should be but I put that down to been off the road for a while.

FSH
When I bought her she had 61,600 miles with a FULL SERVICE HISTORY from a main AR dealer in Dublin City. I phoned them & they faxed my 16 pages of date, from her 1st to service to her last at 57K. Reading thro them showed mostly only oil/filter & plugs were replaced, thankfully I thought as these had cost almost €300. Her timing belt had been replaced at 36k after it had snapped. At that time a few valves had been bent. Total bill was €1500, but that was 30k miles ago with a 2 year owner in between so I reckoned the engine was fine.

Collection Day
Feb 5th, I collected her. My wife & I drove to collect her in our 1.6 Impreza. Giving her a quick start up & a short drive to confirm she was still the car we wanted, we came back & handed over the dosh. €6400. It was a private sale so I got no warranty !!!

Timing belt
Driving down the M7 towards SE Ireland I was grinning from ear to ear. A/c on, stereo on, she revved quite well up to 4500rpm. I was nervous about revving her too high in case the timing belt snapped. On the way home I called into the guy that was going to replace the t/belt to setup an appointment. The next weekend the t/b was replaced & the crank sensor too...total spent €570. The fella selling it had given me €300 of the selling price towards the cost of replacing the timing belt.... a bit of a scam really :eek:

Starting issue
Next stop was at my MIL's house where my kid were been minded by MIL & SIL. Everyone came out, seen the car, admired it & wanted to go for a drive in it. Grand, Hop in...... won't start :( Finger problems I told myself & tried a few min's later, still the same. At this point all the rest were laughing at me for buying a crock 156 :( Then like magic, she fired up. Following 3-4 weeks were the same. Cold or hot starts were fine. *Warm* starts were problematic..... would she start or not...... most times not.

AR dealer
Having ordered a 2nd R/c for her at an AR dealer I had to collect it & get the key coded. During this she failed to start fro the AR mechanics. They plugged in the computer to find the Flywheel sensor defective. They coded the key & as she had cooled down, she started ok.... another €130 ...total spent €700

Fly-wheel Sensor
Going back to my t/belt man, I told him about my problem. He ordered a new flywheel sensor & had the car for a week. During that time he told me that the new sensor made no difference, that *other* sensors were defective, that the ECU was faulty & then eventually that he found a loose/broken wire going from the ECU to the engine. To this day I cannot find that wire that he *fixed*. In total he charged me €100 but been at the loss of the car for a week was more annoying than anything.

http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=32585



So in 4 weeks I only drove her 2 weeks & she had cost me an extra €800.

So the starting issue was re-solved, next was the irritating wheerrrrr sound from the right rear wheel when travelling at slow speeds. This turned out to be a badly *flat-spotted* tyre. It was replaced at €125.... total spent is €925.

Lose of power/MAF issue
2 weeks later, when driving home in the rain, she would not rev past 4500rpm in any gear. I was furious with her at this point & wrote a thread titled "I hate Alfenia".

http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=33307

This turned out to be a combination of broken air filter housing, dirty MAF, dirty throttle body & a leaking EGR air pipe. Took me 4 or 5 hours to fix this. I also discovered why only one rear wheel was dragging/working when I pulled the hand brake.
From *new* to me she always fogged up. whenever external air source was selected. I always had to drive with the A/C on in re-circulation mode.

So next I replaced a handbrake cable, a pollen filter & an air intake pipe. €115....total spent is €1040.

lack of power when cold
Last week I attempt to solve the lack of power, when cold issue. This was cured by correctly setting the spark plug gaps & correctly tighening the 8 spark plugs. The Larger plugs should be 0.9mm & the smaller to 0.8mm....this has made the car very very driveable.

http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=34638&highlight=alfenia

66k service
This weekend I replaced the engine oil & filter. Before hand I had put a 1/3 L of Bardahl engine cleaner into her. Since getting her I had noticed a *diesel* type sound upon start-up & for several seconds afterwards. After putting the Bardahl product in the longevity of this *diesel* noise has reduced to just a second long when started. When ticking over or idle revving I no longer can hear it, not like before. I replaced the oil with 10W/60 oil & a new filter too. €70 ...... €1110

http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=34708

Also I replaced the brake fluid in the clutch & brake systems. I used DOT 4.0. Seems to be fine.

http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=34184

http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/showthread.php?t=34223

Wash/ Tar remove/ Polish

Today I washed her, removed all the tar from all her panels & door sills, used colour restorer & then polished Alfenia. I washed & polished her alloys yesterday when I had all 4 wheels of when working on her brakes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,386 Posts
And all this time, It was the "alfa bug" that kept you wanting to repair her ... if it would of been any other make than Alfa, you would of sold it already ;)
 
N

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
My Alfas have been very reliable over many miles but for a few problems...
My 33 'old banger' was good for a couple of years until it snapped a cambelt (as we know you cant believe the Alfa belt change mileage)... had the engine rebuilt. Then the gear change linkage came apart... drove 20 miles in 3rd. Then it failed an MOT due to rust, the underside needed lots of welding... had that done. Then it decided to BBQ itself, burnt the whole engine bay out before the Fire Engine got to it. RIP. Lovely car...sob.
My Blue 156 had a crap gearbox... lived with it. Also it developed a misfire, my fault, i hadnt had the sparkplugs changed. Had one side of the car resprayed cos someone had previously done it badly. Purchased it with highish mileage so i only kept it for a year. Did about 15,000 miles.
The Black 156 had a crap gearbox... lived with it. Also had an annoying dashboard rattle, apparently should have had a factory recall... sorted by Alfa dealer. Boot and Cabin leaked. Variator replaced at 70,000 miles. Apart from a few niggles i did 52,000 trouble free miles in it.
The Red 156 Selespeed... well, we dont talk about that! :( Drove it for a few days, havnt seen it for nearly 3 weeks. :mad:
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,421 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Norton, If you search thro this site you will see many refernces to Selespeed gearboxes. Reading all them I am glad I'd didn't buy one.

Hope you get yours sorted soon.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
45,050 Posts
Glad to see you're back on the up-side of your love-hate cycle ;)
Hope she doesn't do anything to ruin it this time.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,421 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
bazza said:
Glad to see you're back on the up-side of your love-hate cycle ;)
Hope she doesn't do anything to ruin it this time.
Well if she contiues to go on, & i'm confident she will, as is she currently is I'll be lusting for a looooong time to come. This morning after dropping off my kids to schoool I was travelling on a 2ndry road. A car in front was doing 45mph, i dropped her to 3rd, floor it & swoooosh away she went to 80mph like a breeeeze :)

Man, when she goes well, I love her
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,221 Posts
Its lookin great, hope she stays trouble free and you keep enjoying! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,021 Posts
Good grief...... You're clearly a lot more patient than me. I'd have spat my dummy out and flogged it, no question. I know no car's going to be completely reliable, and I am expecting to have to put a bit more effort into Alfa ownership than the other cars I've owned, but jeez, if that was mine I'd have clubbed it to death by now.

Having said that, she IS a beauty, and if you're willling to forgive her a shaky start, who's to say it wont be a long, beautiful affair :cool:
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,421 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
When i servcie her at the weekend end I decided to *clear my own on-board computer*. As of 5/5/5 my *Alfenia good-will guage* is at 100% full.

Since her service she is going like a rocket, its amazing what a can of Bardahl engine cleaner [ this has ellimated the *diesel* sound & got the variator efficently working again ] & new 10w/60 oil & filter can make to a car.

Loooong may it last.

PS I apologise about the long post but it was thearaputic
{ spelling??? }
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top