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It was about 8 weeks ago that I proudly picked up my 166, so as excited as a schoolboy I went about visiting friends showing off the new beast, stop/starting all night no problem. Got home, went to put it in the garage & cranked away- uh-no surely not? Yep. Dead as a nail! Unbelievable- 1st night breakdown.. This is how I fixed it, check spark-none. injector pulse- strange low voltage readings? weird, 2volts here & there? Crank & cam sensor values all ok, AFM fine,(was replaced just before I got the car) 4 days later & alot of henekin its time to try the emergency start procedure, bearing in mind that its got to go to a dealership to be reset afterwards- bingo! she fires up 1st turn of the key! Yay so happy just to hear it running again! I work at a BMW dealership & know a few of the boys over at Alfa so time to call in a favour.. So we get it in there & hook up the diag port while running under emergency start condition. Dam car wont connect? Techs stumped so we try & enter it manually- 166 3.0 24v.. Nah still doesn't want to know, eventually we tried every combo of model til- bingo! 1998 3.0 24v GTV.. Were in at last. So it appears that Alfa would put in any ecu that makes a car run.. Dodgy. Anyway the ecu is full of faults including injector drivers for the front 3 that I checked for pulse, and also immobiliser & key code faults. Anyway the cars been idling for 45mins now so we cleared all the faults & switched it off. Have a beer & try starting it normally- nothing, just cranking. The Alfa tech thinks its the main ecu, Im hoping not, theyr'e $4500. After much fiddling we wiggle the wiring to the immobiliser box & up pops the code light! Bingo starts first turn of the key time after time! So the next day I pulled out the immobilser box (just to the left of the steering column-green sticker, Robert Bosch, made in Australia) (which incidentally is held on by 1 nut instead of 2).. Armed with some fine grade wet & dry & contact cleaner i cleaned up all the pins, quite a few were a slightly corroded- cracked the box open & gave it a really good wash out, let it dry naturally & topped the pins off with a smear of dielectric grease. Same with the 2 connectors, a good wash out with co cleaner, check & adjust a few for tightness & a smear of grease. Also washed & checked the ring antenna at the ign barrell & its connector behind the fuse box. Now Im happy to report its been starting perfectly ever since! 7 weeks now so Im pretty confident that its fixed. We get this sort of problem alot with Beemers at work too, slight corrosion on tiny connectors is all it takes to kill a low voltage signal. So before calling a tow truck for a non starter or your code lights on or not at all, give this a crack- best of all it will only cost you a can of contact cleaner & a bit of wet & dry sandpaper!
 

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Good call - had a similar issue with one of my 156s that I lent to my son-in-law after I'd been using it for months. He had it two days and - No start, code light on.....checked relays etc then gave in and grovelled under the dash, unplugged and reconnected the aerial wire into the code box a couple of times - job sorted!
 
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