S2 505 2.2 ZDJL GTi l engine performance....Aaargh!
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Thread: S2 505 2.2 ZDJL GTi l engine performance....Aaargh!

  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Default S2 505 2.2 ZDJL GTi l engine performance....Aaargh!

    Oops, just saw my typo in heading...should have been "...GTi performance...." the random 'I' shouldn't be there.

    This is getting frustrating, any tips from 2.2 ZDJL (manual, GTi wagon, aircon not working) gurus would be much appreciated.

    This thing uses more fuel than it should (about 8 km/litre, combined type of use and not lead footing) and lacks guts. It has a particularly flat spot at around 1800 RPM, with the engine missing a little as it accelerates under load through to about 2200 RPM, it then smooths out as revs increase, but is still down on grunt. When I adjust the timing (vacuum adv disconnected), at the normal 10 deg BTDC, it seems to be too retarded to me. When I advance the spark further, the engine keeps accelerating even when the distributor adjustment limit is reached, at which point the spark is ridiculously advanced. I have verified that the timing mark on the crank pulley is correct, by using the manual check of the TDC via the plug just aft of the distributor. I have tinkered with the Airflow Sensor and idle mixture adjustment, but still can't seem to get much of a change. I swapped over the O2 sensor, and found that the sensor wiring (not the heater part) was probably broken. I thought..aha! That should make a difference...it maybe did a bit, but not a great deal. I have checked the various components (throttle switch, supp air device, coolant sensor etc, and they all seem to be functioning). No air leaks.


    Compression seems ok, no sign of significant issues such as head leak or worn rings. I have swapped over most of the injection components, and distributor. The dist centrifugal advance is working ok, though perhaps it may not be as smooth as it ideally should be, and the vac adv is working. The engine the parts came off ran well, it wasn't perfect, but it had a lot more power, and better fuel economy (always close to 10km/l). I use the same fuel as I did with the previous engine...Caltex vortex 95. Tried the 98, no difference at all.

    I am beginning to suspect that the timing belt may be out by a notch or two, hence the weirdness I mentioned of it seeming to enjoy a highly advanced spark timing at idle. Could this be a possibility? I replaced the timing belt recently, found that the old one seemed to be correct, and the new one was put on in the same way...no change to its running afterward.

    For now, I have reset the settings to about where they should be according to the book, but something isn't right. Any ideas?

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    Regards all,
    Simon.
    Last edited by Simon W; 30th September 2014 at 12:19 PM. Reason: Typo in heading

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    Sounds like you've covered the usual suspects. One thing that comes to mind is fuel pressure. The regulator might be keeping the pressure at the high load setting even at idle. This might be down to a leaky diaphragm or sticky valve in the regulator.

    Have fun,

    Rob.
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    Thanks for the suggestion Rob, I seem to recall I swapped that over too (the whole rail, including the reg), but I could be wrong...I have swapped over so many things!

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    Hi Simon, seems that there are good and bad S2 GTI's. We have one that has had most of the symptoms you describe but not quite that bad a power/fuel economy problem.

    Hard to know whether it is one thing or two, power could be general timing/dizzy/AFM and somewhere you have a fuel leak.

    When we first got our car there was a hole in the flexible air intake hose after the AFM and the car got 600klm to a tank around town, after the hose was replaced it fell down to 500klm! So I changed the AFM but things different improve, I suspect the old AFM's aren't working as well as they should after 20 odd years and the engine needs more air.

    Just done the timing belt/head gasket/vac advance capsule on ours. I doubt that your problem is the timing belt you seem to have a good grasp of things. I replaced the rotor, cap and leads on the dizzy and that solved the miss, ours was between 2000 and 3000 rpm. We now have a very lumpy idle and I suspect the secondhand fuel pressure regulator which the previous owner put on in an attempt to solve the miss in the revs might be the culprit.

    The only other thing that occurs to me is gees it easy to put some of those hoses on the air intake manifold back on the wrong point and I found a lot of gunk in some of the hoses coming of the rocker cover which would help much.

    Tom

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    Another thought -- after fitting the Megasquirt to mine, the log file would sometimes be full of very erratic values for coolant temperature. Took a while to diagnose, but it was a not too brilliant connection where the injection loom plugs into the main loom (behind exhaust manifold in the S1, probably in the S2 too). Just unplugging and replugging the sockets fixed it for a few weeks. Tightened up all the spade connectors in the sockets and the logs have looked fine ever since.

    You don't get a log file from the LE2 controller, but there's a chance that, if the Megasquirt was seeing dodgy temperatures, yours could be too. Clutching at straws I have to admit.

    Have fun,

    Rob.

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    Could be Robs, there are so many little things that can add up. When I got this car, the wiring had been seriously butchered, so I spent a lot of time pulling looms out of the old car and putting them in this one. The wires to the dizzy were dodgey, so swapped over that loom, which included the cooling temp sensor input, and injector wiring. All the connections seem pretty good, but then again, the wiring on my other (wrecked) car was getting on too, the covers, wraps etc are brittle, but the wires themselves aren't too bad. I think there has been a slight improvement since I swapped over/fixed up the wires to the exhaust oxygen sensor.

    I swapped the fuel press reg today, back to the one which came with this car, as I mentioned earlier, I had indeed swapped over the whole rail, including press reg, not long after I got the car . Unfortunately, the one I swapped to today turned out to be leaky; the diaphragm seems ok, but when I fitted it, and pressurised it with the engine running, fuel leaked out of its body, around the pressed lip joint of the two parts of the body...I really didn't expect that. So was forced to put the other one back on. Once I did that, as a test, I tried removing the vacuum line to it, to see whether or not it makes a difference how the engine runs. At idle, or even at higher revs it makes no difference at all...which gets me to thinking it may be faulty. This was done without any load, just in the garage. Even so, there seems to be no discernible difference. I would have thought that at higher levels of vacuum (ie at idle, or at increased revs with no load) the diaphragm would be actuating to regulate the pressure, so when the vacuum line is removed, the way the engine is running should change, even if only slightly, but it didn't make any difference. So, as a further test I tried disconnecting the return line, to see what the flow is, by connecting a dummy line into a bottle. With ignition on, engine stopped, no flow. With engine at idle, fuel pouring out, at about 2.5 litres per minute, same rate when engine revved up. I tried it too with vacuum line removed at idle and at revs...it doesn't seem to be any different, same rate. I gather that there is a certain preset pressure by-pass value built in to the reg, which is only achieved when the engine is running, and that would be independent of the vacuum system (I'm guessing this part). However, if the observed return line fuel flow is not changed when the vacuum line is removed, and the engine inlet manifold is at a reasonably high vacuum state, to me that suggests the vacuum actuated pressure regulation isn't doing anything. Of course, this could be acting in the other sense...ie the regulator is releasing too much pressure, and thus the vacuum part isn't making any difference, if you get my drift.

    I hope I haven't confused everyone with my wording, but if anyone has any ideas about this for me, I would be most appreciative.
    Last edited by Simon W; 24th September 2014 at 07:30 PM.

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    The symptoms you describe are a typical example of weakened springs attached to the distributor weights -- predominantly the thicker one which controls maximum advance.
    If you remove them you will be able to close up the eyelets on both ends -- but not by too much -- to restore appropriate tension. Remember that the thicker one should not be in tension when fitting, even though the thinner one should be -- just.
    My GTi benefits from 12 degrees of static advance when using 95 or 98 octane petrol .

    Pavel

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    Thanks Pavel, I'll look at those springs, the advance seems a bit uneven.

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    The volume returned to the tank isn't a good indicator of whether the regulator is working. What isn't injected has to return to the tank and, with an unloaded engine, the higher pressure would make a minuscule difference to the volume injected.

    I think there should be a noticeable change in engine idle if you connect a hose to the regulator and suck it down to a decent vacuum. If you get a mouthful of fuel, the regulator's bad :-). If it makes a difference to the engine note it suggests the regulator's doing its job. If it doesn't make a difference it might be the regulator, it might not.

    The best test of regulator would be a pressure gauge of course, but the suck it and see approach may work.

    On Pavel's suggestion, for a quick test, perhaps you can just substitute the distributor from the other car?

    Have fun,

    Rob.

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    Reading this thread makes me realise (with the benifit of 30 years hindsight) what a good decision renault made with these motors to fit electronic ignition and the renix efi system whose bosh parts can be substituted by common parts found at any wrecker.

    With that in mind and the concept of..... 'not if but when'..... the antiquated ignition system causes you grief, have you considered that now might be a realy good time to convert to electronic ignition and/or fuel control??
    There are so many EI options on the market these days that to not consider one of them is almost masochistic.

    Jo

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    Jo, the engine in question does have both electronic ignition and injection.

    Simon, is the engine noisy/rattly at all? Valve clearances make a big difference to the way these engines run. Have you had the rocker cover off to see if you have any cam lobes left?
    Scotty

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    Quote Originally Posted by Demannu View Post
    Jo, the engine in question does have both electronic ignition and injection.

    Simon, is th
    WHoops...
    I assumed that when Pavel Moore was talking about dizzy weights he was talking about a non EI system.

    Jo

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    Quote Originally Posted by jo proffi View Post
    WHoops...
    I assumed that when Pavel Moore was talking about dizzy weights he was talking about a non EI system.

    Jo
    Ah yes, well in that respect they are behind the Renault - the distributor contains an electronic pickup that feeds an external amplifier module, however the timing is still controlled by counterweights and vacuum advance module on the distributor.

    The injection is fed a tach pulse from the ignition amplifier as it's trigger.

    So yes, the distributor can be a point of failure.
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    Scotty

    Melbourne - Dandenong Ranges

    1956 Peugeot 403 - 'Francois' - resto project

    1969 Peugeot 504 - 'Pascal' - daily driver project

    1970 Peugeot 404 Utility - 'Brutus' - resto project

    1978 Peugeot 604 - as yet unnamed - V6 on straight LPG

    1987 Peugeot 505 - as yet unnamed - project car

    1999 Peugeot 406 Coupé - 'Chloe' - 5 speed manual

    2011 Peugeot 3008 XTE HDi - 'Zoe' - hatchback on steroids

    2014 Peugeot RCZ - 'Remy'

    1999 Range Rover 4.6 HSE - 'Grover' - tow car

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    Quote Originally Posted by Demannu View Post
    Jo, the engine in question does have both electronic ignition and injection.

    Simon, is the engine noisy/rattly at all? Valve clearances make a big difference to the way these engines run. Have you had the rocker cover off to see if you have any cam lobes left?

    Hi Scotty,

    I haven't had the rocker cover off yet, it is definitely on my list to do, has been for a little while. You may be right, the cam may be worn...there isn't a lot of rattle, but one valve at least is a bit noisy. I don't know what's been done to it, but I suspect the engine has been at least partially rebuilt at some stage, the trouble is, I don't think it was done by a Pug mechanic, I found all sorts of odd things , like the dist on upside down (because they put its drive gear in 180 deg out), the camshaft pulley timing mark was not where it should have been, injectors replaced..but badly, engine wiring looms really hacked, etc).

    If worst comes to worst, I could do an engine swap, I don't think that's necessary, but if the cam's worn, then a cam or even head swap from the dead car would be a solution.

    It's been a lot of work, but the car is a much better thing now than when I got it. But there's still a bit to go, and sometimes it can test my sanity!

    Regards
    Simon

    PS to all that: I have just checked the valve clearances. All needed some minor adjustment, most needed tweaking up a little, none were too bad, and a couple were actually too tight. Cam doesn't look too bad, lobes not obviously worn. All valves set to book value, no rattles, but no appreciable difference in the way it runs after job done.
    Last edited by Simon W; 26th September 2014 at 01:46 PM. Reason: Addendum/update to work done.

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    I would suggest, from what you've posted so far, that replacing the engine would be unnecessary overkill and very unlikely to resolve it's malfunction since the cause appears to be with the ancillaries -- distributor; fuel pressure regulator; injectors and/or oxygen sensor.

    Firstly, strip your distributor down to the weights and springs. Ensure that the weights are free to fully move, and lube the pivot points. Remove the springs and shorten the thicker one by a millimetre by re-curving the end fixing points [be wary of wear at their contact point with the posts -- the wire can easily break]. Very slightly re-tension the thinner one as well.
    Re-assemble and fit to car. Then accurately time the distributor. Contrary to popular belief it is very easy to be a one, or even two, ribs out on the timing belt. This can be corrected by loosening and locking off the tensioner and turning the distributor drive cog inside the belt -- bearing in mind that you can here give yourself some leeway on the advance/retard movement of the distributor body in the ridiculously short slot provided.
    Having done all that have someone rev the engine to 4000 RPM whilst you check with a timing light that the max. advance is on, or about, 24 degrees.
    Lastly, check the vacuum line from the dist. to the manifold, ensuring that the end connections are an interference fit. If, by chance, there is a vacuum module inserted in the line; get rid of it. There was a discussion some years ago, on this forum, about this with the consensus that engine performance was much better without it.

    I would also suggest that you invest $160 in a new Bosch fuel pressure regulator [0280 160 225]. Not only do the internal spring and diaphragm deteriorate with age [and these cars now have a lot of age and mileage under their belts], the modern new ones are rated at 3 Bar as apposed to the older ones having only about 2 and three quarters.


    Lastly, fit a new oxygen/lambda sensor [0258 986 502-36Y]. These only last for about 80,000Ks, are rarely replaced, yet have a marked effect on performance and fuel use.

    In my previous post I remarked that my GTi thrived on 12 degrees of static advance -- which it does. However I failed to note that your car has a manual gearbox and mine is an automatic. The manual drive car should be set at 2 degrees less than the auto, as you have done.

    All of the above I have done to my ZDJL GTi and the performance is markedly better than 2 other GTi auto wagons I have driven in recent years. On top of that it is reliable -- which it needs to be as I live over 75Ks from the nearest workshop of note.

    Pavel

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    Thanks Pavel,

    Have done all of the above, plus more, with the exception of replacing the fuel press reg and O sensor with new ones, though I did swap both of these over from my other car, and the O sensor on it had been replaced, I believe (and it seems to have made some difference, I think). There were many other things which weren't working properly on this car, one of which was the throttle switch. Also, the throttle butterfly setting had been seriously messed with...possibly tied in with the throttle switch issue.

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    Update.

    I measured the airflow sensor variable resistance (between terminals 5 and 7), and found that values were considerably higher than the Haynes 762 manual states, but all other resistance values were within the specified range. I had the cover of the mechanism off, so I tried pressing down slightly on the 'tongue' of the pick up, and found that reduced the resistance. So removed that, and bent it down a little to give it a bit more downward pressure on the pick up plate. Refitted, tested, now the resistance is very different, compatible with the book values. There seems to be an improvement in the performance...have to temper this a bit, as I can't be 100% sure yet that it's not just wishful thinking on my part, but at least there is logic behind it.

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    When I still had the Bosch injection setup my AFM started playing up. It was fine under full power, but in the light load areas had started to become erratic. Google turned up an interesting article where a guy with a Porsche that also had Bosch LE2 injection showed how a track had worn in the AFM contacts. A quick search doesn't turn up the same article, but the thrust of it was to carefully give the finger a slight bend so that it makes contact with a "fresh" area.

    Sure enough, when I took the cover off my AFM, there was a lot of wear in one area. The bend trick fixed the problem, but only for a few months. I was already tempted to go for the Megasquirt, and the AFM tipped the balance.

    Anyhow, while you have the cover off, perhaps it'd be worthwhile to give this a go. Perhaps you can turn up something a bit less vague than "bend the finger" with a bit of googling. Another suggestion (which I didn't try) would be to try a bit of graphite on the contact areas. That was the old wheeze to take scratchiness out of volume controls on audio amps and it might well do the same for the AFM.

    Have fun,

    Rob.
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    I am curious to know how you "tested" the aux. airflow meter. Most people assume that provided the electrical contacts show closed circuit, and that the wiring flows voltage and has a good earth return, then the AAF is fine. But that's only the heater circuit -- it can still be bunged up with rubbish internally; and the internal flap may not open and close as it should. It needs to be removed and cleaned internally. Then put in the fridge for awhile to see that the flap is then open. Then heat it up to get the flap to close properly. If not there is an adjustment screw on the side. Obviously, if it does not close it will bleed air and affect the air fuel mixture.

    With the Air Flow Meter top removed, loosen the 3 cross headed screws holding the wiper board in place and push the board 'north', away from the 2 lower screws. Hold the board in this position and nip up the screws. Whilst the movement is almost minute, it is enough to provide a new wiper surface. I would caution about increasing the contact pressure as this increases wear on the wiper tracks.

    Pavel

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    Just to be clear Pavel, in your first paragraph you're referring to the auxiliary air valve aren't you? The one intended to bump the idle during warm-up by delivering a bit of extra air. Calling it an auxiliary AFM confused me for a bit. I don't remember Simon mentioning it.

    It seems unlikely to cause the under-load problems Simon described at the outset ("down on grunt"), but mentioning that its flap could be sticking -- the same might be happening with the AFM. If its flap were sticky, all sorts of things could happen. I suspect Simon would have noticed if it was sticky when he had the lid off the AFM, but worth mentioning anyway.

    Have fun,

    Rob.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon W View Post
    Thanks Pavel,

    Have done all of the above, plus more, with the exception of replacing the fuel press reg and O sensor with new ones, though I did swap both of these over from my other car, and the O sensor on it had been replaced, I believe (and it seems to have made some difference, I think). There were many other things which weren't working properly on this car, one of which was the throttle switch. Also, the throttle butterfly setting had been seriously messed with...possibly tied in with the throttle switch issue.
    I presume wrt the throttle switch, you have ensured that the WOT microswitch is operating at approx 70% throttle. If this isn't kicking in, then the engine will indeed be flat at larger throttle openings. Either measure with an ohmmeter or just disconnect the switch and if there is no difference in 'grunt' in large throttle openings, then it suggests there is no fuel enrichment and the WOT microswitch isn't being actuated, or the wiring is defective.

    griffo

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pavel Moore View Post
    I am curious to know how you "tested" the aux. airflow meter. Most people assume that provided the electrical contacts show closed circuit, and that the wiring flows voltage and has a good earth return, then the AAF is fine. But that's only the heater circuit -- it can still be bunged up with rubbish internally; and the internal flap may not open and close as it should. It needs to be removed and cleaned internally. Then put in the fridge for awhile to see that the flap is then open. Then heat it up to get the flap to close properly. If not there is an adjustment screw on the side. Obviously, if it does not close it will bleed air and affect the air fuel mixture.

    With the Air Flow Meter top removed, loosen the 3 cross headed screws holding the wiper board in place and push the board 'north', away from the 2 lower screws. Hold the board in this position and nip up the screws. Whilst the movement is almost minute, it is enough to provide a new wiper surface. I would caution about increasing the contact pressure as this increases wear on the wiper tracks.

    Pavel
    I believe you are referring to the supplementary air device Pavel. Tested as per book, but also removed, cleaned and tested whilst removed by connecting to 12V source and observing that the flap moved, after a few minutes, from partially open to fully closed and sealed, adjustment seems ok too. Air lines are not clogged up at all.

    I also had/have misgivings about the wear caused by increasing pressure on the slider plate of the AFM; I note that it had been played with before, as there was a slight kink in the 'finger', I believe it wasn't contacting the plate adequately, as a result. AFM flap movement is full and free.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ng850 View Post
    I presume wrt the throttle switch, you have ensured that the WOT microswitch is operating at approx 70% throttle. If this isn't kicking in, then the engine will indeed be flat at larger throttle openings. Either measure with an ohmmeter or just disconnect the switch and if there is no difference in 'grunt' in large throttle openings, then it suggests there is no fuel enrichment and the WOT microswitch isn't being actuated, or the wiring is defective.

    griffo
    Based on the description in post 1, where it runs good at higher revs and crap at lower ones and uses heaps of juice, It almost sounds like it is fuelling for high revs/load all the time, ie over fueling. My renault (same engine) performed exactly the same when it's map sensor tube cracked and the ecu thought the engine was at WOT all the time.

    Simon, assuming that you dont drive around at high revs/load all the time, what do the spark plugs tell you??

    Jo

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    Quote Originally Posted by jo proffi View Post
    Based on the description in post 1, where it runs good at higher revs and crap at lower ones and uses heaps of juice, It almost sounds like it is fuelling for high revs/load all the time, ie over fueling. My renault (same engine) performed exactly the same when it's map sensor tube cracked and the ecu thought the engine was at WOT all the time.

    Simon, assuming that you dont drive around at high revs/load all the time, what do the spark plugs tell you??

    Jo
    Spark plugs actually looked, if anything, like the mixture was a little on the lean side, not rich.

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    Yes, Rob, correct; sorry about that. I was obviously not in proper proof reading mode as it was after midnight when I wrote and posted it. Thankfully Simon got the gist.
    Whilst I think Jo makes a very valid point about the fueling side of things, what puzzles me is the erratic nature of the ignition advance curve and how, by manually advancing or retarding the distributor a more than significant amount of, plus or minus, engine RPM occurs. In the old days with carby equipped engines, and rarely with the benefit of a shop manual, we tuned by advancing and retarding the distributor to obtain the highest idle speed and then retarded the dizzy by a few degrees. This worked well, although was still subjected to a road test for ignition knock -- the dreaded ball bearing noise. Nowadays, of course, there are many, and varied, electronic factors to also consider.
    Still. life wasn't meant to be easy -- and fun it often aint. But with our interest to spur him on, and his own tenacity, Simon will eventually get there. Now that will allow him to have fun.

    Pavel

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