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Mazda Protege Basic Maintenance Questions



  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,322
    Or an extension. They're in pretty deep.

    Blow all the dirt off from around the plugs before removing the boots or coils. You don't want this falling into the combustion chambers.

    Good air filters can cost as little as $15 when you buy them on-sale. No point in trying to save a couple bucks on cheap filters that may offer shorter life and may have poor gaskets, leading to unfiltered air.
  • Hi,
    I have a similar problem in my Protege 99 and called to a Mazda dealer about the warranty you mentioned, they asked me for any proof of that and then they will check it out, can you please give me the telephone and address of the Mazda dealer that fixed your car so I can have my dealer calling them to check on mine also?. I will strongly appreciateyour help with this matter.
  • Hi guys, this is only my second post here. I've got a 2001 Protege DX with just a shade over 60,000 miles on it. First question....the last couple of weeks I started hearing a squeaking from my brakes. It's not a solid squeak, it's kind of an intermittant squeak as I come to a stop. And then sometimes it's not even there at all. Just need new brake pads or what? Plus I'm new in town, so I don't know ANY mechanics at all, let alone reputable ones. What are some direct questions I need to ask to avoid getting fleeced?
    Ummm...had another question, but I've lost it. So you guys get off the hook with just the one this time :) I'd appreciate any advice.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    Yep, it "sounds" like new brake pads are the order of the day. I'd call up a Mazda dealership and ask them how much it would cost as a base line number. Then ask around for garages that colleagues or friends have used and call them to compare. Should be a fairly straightforward job.
  • I have a 2001 Protege but can only find repair manuals for protege's up to year 2000. Does anyone know if brake pad and rotor replacements for a 2001 would be the same as for a 2000? I would like to buy the manual to see how simple or complex it is to change both pads & rotors.
  • alternatoralternator Posts: 545
    See post 932 in this forum for 2002 Shop Manual. I don't believe you should attempt this replacement unless you have prior experience at such, or have someone with prior experience to assist you.
  • I have a 2003 Protege with 23000 miles on it. Today while driving on the interstate the car completely stalled. All service lights came on and after putting the car in neutral and coasting to a stop the car started up on the first try. I know it could be a variety of things. The car is under warranty so it will go to the dealership but I would appreciate any heads up on the problem.
  • Hi,

    I have a general maintenance question. My 95 mazda has 92k miles on it and over past year I have done 3K oil changes, tune-up, radiator flush, transmission fluid replacement, put new tires, and new battery. Still it continues to give only 20 MPG. I mostly drive in city but was expecting atleast 27 - 30.

    Any ideas on what could the possible culprit? I would hate to go to a mechanic and open up the wallet to find the issue.


    Poila :sick:
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Ever replaced the plug wires?

  • Has anyone printed out the TSB's for you car from this site and taken it to the dealership? Is it a good idea too?
  • Hi ,

    I bought a used mazda at 48K milage, and have been doing oil changes on it every 3K miles till now...

    I want to do a better servicingo f the car...waht all should be done on a that I have run it for 12K miles...Also, the only issue i have seen it Brake Squealing, as another gentlemen had mentioned. Other than that I only had to replace the battery...

    Kindly suggest waht should I ask the shop to do as a part of a wider servicing of the car at 60K...milage.

  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,020
    Protege owners may have some suggestions, but you can also take a look at the Edmunds Maintenance Guide.

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email,, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • Edmunds maintainenence Guide was very helpful Thxxxx...

    I got Pep Boys to do that services for just about what Edmunds suggested... I am not doing the Timing Belt replacement (as its Minimun repalcement milage is 60K)....

    Apart from that the total (minus timing Belt) was $240...This includes the following:

    Air filter
    Automatic transmission fluid
    Engine oil
    Oil filter
    Spark plugs

    Hope its not a RIP off.....John Elway Mazda dealership was asking for $289 that did not include Automatic Transmission Fluid change...Dealers are always up to rip you off...ANother one Burt here in Colorado asked for $1010....ridiculous...

    ANyways, thx a lot for your assistance and guidance...

    Be back for more later...

    Take care
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Also replace the plug wires. They tend to get hot and short out on Proteges (I speak from experience having owned four of 'em). You should replace them every 30K to 40K miles and your engine (and gas mileage) will thank you.

    A stock set from Mazda costs about $60; I've purchased aftermarket sets from NAPA for about $40. As long as you remove one at a time and replace each one in order, it's not a hard job at all. I can replace a set in less than two minutes, and no tools are required.

  • Does anyone know of a reliable alarm system that I can have installed on my 99 ES? I replaced the battery a couple of years ago and did not have the patience or time to go back to the dealer and have them charge me to reset the alarm so I have been without one for awhile. I am looking for an inexpensive one that will do the job. I live in downstate NY and have approx. 72,000 miles on the car. It runs really well and would like to keep it another 72,000 miles but would like to have that little added protection.

  • Contrary to the response posted after yours which suggests driving the car until the timing belt breaks, it has been my understanding for many years (I am on my second Protege) that if the timing belt on a Japanese car breaks it causes serious damage to the engine (min. $2000 Cdn). -- better to fork out the $300+ and get it replaced NOW.

    My manual recommends around 90,000 k but because the timing belt is a pain to get at the last time I had it replaced was at 168,300 kms when I had other work done on the car. (I had previously had the belt replaced done at around 87,000k. Hence the references posted elsewhere on this forum about replacing the timing belt when you replace the water pump -- which I had done on my first Protege before I sold it. i.e. The cost of replacing the belt is mostly in the labour -- not the part.

    At 168,3000 kms, the shop inspected it, and in view of the mileage and the other work being done, the shop said "It's time". Just for the record, the shop is owned and operated by my friend's brother who I trust implicitly. He was the one who explained to me why they replaced the timing belt on the old car at the same as they did the water pump.
  • Some Japanese cars (many Hondas in fact) have so-called "interference" engines where loss of the timing belt may cause considerable damage. Protege engines are of the "non-interference" type where loss of the timing belt will only cause the engine to come to a stop, with no damage.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Protege engines are "non-interference" engines. I don't recommend waiting until the belt breaks and letting your car leave you stranded somewhere, but it is peace of mind if you can't come up with the $400 to $600 it normally costs to do this work at the exact mileage you need to do it. In other words, you can wait a little while without worrying about totaling your car if it does break on you.

    On the Protege, your engine will die and that's all that will happen. On many Hondas and other makes of cars, the piston heads will contact the valves when the timing belt breaks, ruining the pistons and the valves. In most cases that totals your car.

    Just one other good (and little-known) reason to own a Protege instead of a Civic!

  • oskwioskwi Posts: 88
    My local dealership is going to charge me ONLY $278 for the timing belt replacement! Needless to say, I was thrilled considering my previous Galant cost me in excess of $600 to get its timing belt replaced...YIKES!

    If anyone here is from the Western New York area, Towne Mazda in Orchard Park, New York has been outstanding...rental cars without me asking, discounted parts and occasionally, free parts (I pay for labor) even though my car is out of warranty...being a faithful customer has its rewards!
  • Hi,
    I looked up . There was lot of useful info.
    However, I did not find instructions on changing brakes.
    I am looking for instructions on changing the brake pads. Today I opened my protege wheels/ brakes and could not install the pads. There was a wire like thin clip which I do not where to put back.
    Can anyone give me some instructions on changing the brake pads? Pictures will be ideal.
    Please help!
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