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Mike
Mike, UK Car Mechanic
Category: UK Car
Satisfied Customers: 38739
Experience:  Hi, I am a Car/ vehicle technician of 34 years. 29of -running my own repair/diagnostic business.
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Coupe gt: vw polo..h reg and am havin problems..power loss..000 miles

Customer Question

hi, i have just bought a vw polo coupe gt h reg and am havin problems with power loss on motorways, where the car is at a constant speed for a long time it seems to be ok around town, it feels like an electrical fault, the car has done 189,000 miles
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: UK Car
Expert:  Mike replied 3 years ago.
Hello and Welcome to justanswer...

Can you please give me the engine code for this model?

It is to be found either on a sticker on the engine - under the bonnet...or in the rear spare wheel area on a white label.....

Plus - when this fault occurs - do you get any lights come on the dash...?

Too - does the engine cut out altogether - and re start easily again or not?

Rgds - MIKE.............................................
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

hi mike, engine code is 3f010688 this is from the log book, there are no lights on the dash when it happens, it tend to happen when the car is driven along the dual carrage way or motorway at a constant speed, there seems to be two lots of problems (1) is there is a loss of power it slows down and then picks up if you stop it will tick over fine,(2) it seems to jerk as though the ignition is being switched off and on, it also idles high but only sometimes, but again sometimes it is fine, if i drive it back from work (through town) it tends to be fine cheers.

Expert:  Mike replied 3 years ago.
Hi again - Thank you for your reply and info -

From what you describe (and with the extra info) - you have either a fuel supply problem ..ie, fuel filter - fuel pump , restrictions in the line , dirt etc... or a fault with fuel control system on the engine..

Its possible you have ignition problems, but the odds are in favour of the above .

Another thing that can give what you have is a vacuum or air leak in the management system on the engine -so check all that very carefully - especially the small bore pipes etc for cracks , loose fitting etc..

On the 89 model - Im sure this will be a single point injector unit or carb if an early one - but either way - check the thick gasket that mounts between the unit and the manifold before doing much else.. Have the engine running and then get a firm grip of the unit and push / pull it. If its loose - it can be tightened up using the mounting bolts ( you can try that anyway )... but if its split / perished, you will be able to determine the engine runs rough when you do that - and that will be your problem...

So try that as above first - and you can also check for manifold gasket leaks etc - inc pipes as above by using a spray of water or wd40 around all the joints...If you get a change in engine note - you know then that you have found the cause...

So check all that carefully as above .. then you need to move on to the fuel system if needed. I see you have renewed the filter - It would be a good idea to use a good fuel system cleaner in the tank and see if that helps over a few miles..

Too, you can have a garage carry out a fuel pressure test (which uses proper test equipment ) and this will determine if you have a fuel pump / pressure / delivery problem which if so, can then be further investigated at the time.

Throughput the above, you will get this sorted out. ;)

I Sincerely XXXXX XXXXX have helped you - but do ask me if you need anything more..


Kind Rgds, MIKE

 

  • >>>>>>>>>Please don't forget ....Please press the ACCEPT button if you are happy with my answer/advice given - as that's how I get paid for my time, knowledge and expertise given. Thank you.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
hi mike, thanks for that answer, the fuel system is a multipoint system it has four seperate injectors, you said i could have an ignition fault the new rotor arm i fitted does look burned already although its only been on a short while could this mean the ignition coil pack is faulty? , what do you mean fuel control system, as far as i can see the fuel comes up to the fuel rail straight from the pump, and then back through the return
Expert:  Mike replied 3 years ago.
Hi again - Thank you for your contact..

Ok - it had to be the multi point didnt it ;) In that you can ignore the ref to the Spi unit mounting gasket - but still do make the same checks on the throttle body mount and the rest of the pipework etc..

As for the ignition system, common causes for premature burning like that would be wear in the rotor shaft - so that there is excess gap between segments - and that too will cause poor running..so get a grip of the distributor rotor shaft where the arm sits - and give it a good push and pull motion - see if there is any play in the shaft - sidewards play - it shouldn't have any..

The other cause of this would be problems with the ignition amp - and these are / were really common faults with these vehilces - so check that too. Some were separate some were built in to the ecu , in the case of the latter, you cant do anything with that one...at which point you would be looking at having the ecu tested....

Before going down that line though , there are common issues with these.. Strictly they are the ECT sensor - Engine coolant temp sensor - (this is for the engine management and is located near the distributor screwed into the head.. ) common fault - and well worth replacing at this point if the above are are all ruled out.. Secondly, the engine control relay can cause such faults - thats mounted next to the fuel pump relay adjacent to the Ecu -in the plenum chamber..Third is the VAF - thats the air flow meter - mounted on the air filter top / body... fourth - make sure the earth straps on the battery - to the body and from the body to the engine are secure.. Poor connections can cause this - and the burning of the rotor too!
Im sure you will find the fault as above.

So work through as above.. I hope that has helped you further - Please dont forget the Accept button for me - Thank you ..and if you do need to get back to me again even after that, you can do so just by using the Reply button again..

Best Rgds - MIKE..

 

  • >>>>>>>>>Please don't forget ....Please press the ACCEPT button if you are happy with my answer/advice given - as that's how I get paid for my time, knowledge and expertise given. Thank you.

Feedback and any Bonuses are always appreciated too. Thank you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
hi mike, i feel a little let down as you discribed yourself as a vw expert, however you didnot mention anything about a diagnostic plug or the procedure for setting the mixture or any of the engine settings which would of been very helpful, why you didnot mention this is strange as these small bits of information are very important to the running of thr car, this information is free and freely available, your piece of advice (for which you charge) is just about everywhere on the net, my only regret is that i should have done more surfing before going to you.
Expert:  Mike replied 3 years ago.
Hello again... thank you for your message.

I gave you a lot of detailed information which would have helped you arrive at a conclusion.

I asked you right at the beginning if there were any warning lights on the dash - engine management light...and you said no.. Therefore, there is no need and no point in carrying out a plug in diagnostic test - because the light would come on if the ecu had detected any such relevant faults.

Too, the diagnostic capabilities on this age of VW are not at all extensive, so overall , its not at all strange that I didn't mention that - the above is the reason / reasons for it.

You have had every opportunity to come back and ask me for more help or info - and even ask me why I didn't mention to do that - you didn't - and have only now come back nearly 3 weeks later to say what you have...

Had you come back and asked - I would have told you the above back then - and helped you more if needed...on top of the extensive help and info I already gave you.

I hope that clarifies that for you.

Kind Rgds - MIKE.

 

  • >>>>>>>>>Please don't forget ....Please press the ACCEPT button if you are happy with my answer/advice given - as that's how I get paid for my time, knowledge and expertise given. Thank you.

Feedback and any Bonuses are always appreciated too. Thank you.



Edited by Mike on 11/14/2010 at 9:38 PM EST

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