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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I have read hundreds of topics about this and am still no nearer to solving my problem.

My 2006 Alfa 159 2.2 JTS has developed the dreaded VPS not available warning. I have tried all of the connections etc, disconnecting the battery, and all to no avail. It started after I replaced the front wheel bearing. I did use a broom handle to hold down the brake pedal so I could crack the hub nut, so I thought I may have done something to the ECU connector or brake / clutch switches, but I have checked and cleaned all of those with no sucess. (The brake lights work). I should mention that the car starts and runs fine, just the VPS warning stays on all the time and the steering doesn't lock.

I get the following error codes when I scan the electronic steering ECU with Multiecuscan:

U1601 Canbus Network Error

As I say, have checked all connectors, done the 10 minute battery disconnect etc to no avail. The only other thing to mention is that I have a Chinese DVD player fitted which has a canbus adaptor fitted to allow the steering wheel controls to work on the radio. I have had no problems at all with this, and it was fitted months before the VPS fault began.

Any (new) suggestions would be gratefully received!
 

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Hi sorry to hear your news- I ve made quite a few posts on here about this subject as I too had the same problem after I replaced power steering reservoir/fluid.
Does your steering lock engage/disengage?
What happens after you insert the key?
 

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Hi All,

I have read hundreds of topics about this and am still no nearer to solving my problem.

My 2006 Alfa 159 2.2 JTS has developed the dreaded VPS not available warning. I have tried all of the connections etc, disconnecting the battery, and all to no avail. It started after I replaced the front wheel bearing. I did use a broom handle to hold down the brake pedal so I could crack the hub nut, so I thought I may have done something to the ECU connector or brake / clutch switches, but I have checked and cleaned all of those with no sucess. (The brake lights work). I should mention that the car starts and runs fine, just the VPS warning stays on all the time and the steering doesn't lock.

I get the following error codes when I scan the electronic steering ECU with Multiecuscan:

U1601 Canbus Network Error

As I say, have checked all connectors, done the 10 minute battery disconnect etc to no avail. The only other thing to mention is that I have a Chinese DVD player fitted which has a canbus adaptor fitted to allow the steering wheel controls to work on the radio. I have had no problems at all with this, and it was fitted months before the VPS fault began.

Any (new) suggestions would be gratefully received!
Does it do it all the time? Mine sometimes does on the first start of the day but normally won't after that. Like yours, it causes no problem other than the occasional warning light. I'm also interested in the solution!

So far I've eliminated battery voltage as the issue but not looked beyond that.
 

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If it's saying you have a canbus network problem you could try a proxy alignment to get all the nodes talking to each other.
The Steering Lock ecu has all the pre-ignition circuits-start permissions routed through it aswell as containing the electronic column lock.
If the lock isn't working then it seems like you may need a new ecu unit.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hi sorry to hear your news- I ve made quite a few posts on here about this subject as I too had the same problem after I replaced power steering reservoir/fluid.
Does your steering lock engage/disengage?
What happens after you insert the key?
My steering lock does not engage. After I insert the key, the ignition comes on as normal and the car starts and runs fine, just the VPS warning flashes up onece and then the warning light (Steering wheel and padlock) comes on and stays on.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Does it do it all the time? Mine sometimes does on the first start of the day but normally won't after that. Like yours, it causes no problem other than the occasional warning light. I'm also interested in the solution!

So far I've eliminated battery voltage as the issue but not looked beyond that.
Does it all of the time. As I said, the car starts and drives fine...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
If it's saying you have a canbus network problem you could try a proxy alignment to get all the nodes talking to each other.
The Steering Lock ecu has all the pre-ignition circuits-start permissions routed through it aswell as containing the electronic column lock.
If the lock isn't working then it seems like you may need a new ecu unit.
How do I do a proxy alignment? That's a new one to me :)

I did check with a couple of Alfa Specialists about the ECU, and they all said it was unlikely to be the ECU, but offered no other solution.

Can you fit a second hand ECU or are they coded?
 

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Canbus Alignment is a procedure in MES for ensuring all the canbus sensors and units are talking to each other.
Some canbus errors are misleading as a poor electrical connection close to an active partner on the canbus can lead to the partner erroneously generating an error. In the OP case, it might be a poor connector or internal error on the steering lock unit.
There is a thread somewhere on here on how to take it apart
 

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If it's only the Steering Lock part of the Steering Ecu that's malfunctioning then it's possible to replace that part with used one-see sketcher-he has made posts on this very subject & I provided him with my used steering Ecu that had a working lock but no electrics.
 

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One of my elm327 devices causes the can bus network error. When I use the one that came with my multiecuscan I don't get the error. Just a thought as it might be that the error is misleading.
 

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One thing may be worth a try. My wife's 159 gave intermittent VPS errors for several years. About 18 months, maybe 2 years ago, she also got the TCP type smell that a poor connection on the Aircon controller gives. I fixed that connection and the VPS error stopped appearing at the same time.

She has the TCP smell back recently (I will need to clean the Aircon connector again when I get time) and the intermittent VPS error is once again back.

This may or may not be pure coincidence!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks all.

There are a couple of ideas that I haven't heard of or tried. Have heard of the AC connection issue but not tried it yet. Never heard of the can bus proxy alignment. I will do some research into that and give it a try.

Will report back on my progress.
 
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