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Mazda MX-5 Miata Electrical Problems



  • Car died...just like reason. Cruising through my school parking lot, and about to corner in first died. All electric was out. Nada. Called AAA.
    Guy couldn't find out polarity of battery to jumpstart it. While he is looking, the trunk light suddenly goes on. Whoa. I've only had the car a few weeks. Car had only been on for a few minutes. It has only 11,000 miles, garage kept, super clean.
    Total enigma. I've noted others stating that they've had their car suddenly die, and come back to life later. The AAA tow truck guy did nothing. His battery was sitting near my battery, but he never hooked it up. 45 minutes after dying, car started as if nothing was wrong. Help. I don't want this to happen on a highway or other bad location. :surprise:
  • According to the check engine code, my 1997 MX 5 (M edition) automatic tranny, has a bad heat sensor. Anyone familiar with these, and how involved is the replacement procedure?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Sorry, no, never even heard of that part.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I was reminded how these really don't last all that long...

    My engine started misfiring - BADLY. It sputtered at certain RPM like I've never seen.

    First I checked the timing, but that was OK. I thought it might have been knocked out of the right timing setting since my Miata was hit last week (again).

    Then I replaced the wires, and sure enough, they basically fell apart when I was taking the old ones out. Half of the connector came off on the spark plug, even though I had used boot grease.

    Replaced those, and the spark plugs as well, and she's running like new.
  • avid1avid1 Posts: 1
    My 1992 has the exact same issue. Did you fix yours? How?
    fyi: regulator is integrated into the alternator

    I replaced both the batt & alt. also the cooling fan relay

    have had both the new batt & alt bench tested twice. both good
  • Were you able to solve this problem? I don't have the exact problem but similar. Mine will be dead after a week or two of not using. Even keeping an trickle charger on it. Had it looked at by a Mazda dealer and twice by a Japanese auto specialist. I'm ready to give up since they can't find the problem.
  • jfloriojflorio Posts: 1
    I wanted to know what the rectangular box is on the passagers side, engine compartment, that is located closest to the firewall rather than the very front of the car. I looks like there are some brake lines running to it, but its not the master cylinder (opposite side), the humming is electrica because it ran my battery dead, I can't imagine what it could be.
  • Hey you need to look at the RECALLS on the 1990 Miata's that in one of the recalls, call you closes MAZDA SALE'S and if it hasnt been fixed yet they HAVE TOO do it for FREE
  • firejoyfirejoy Posts: 1
    I recently had the exact same problem. The battery indicator light went on. I stopped at a garage and had the battery and alternator checked, they were both okay. I've checked all the fuses and they are also fine. The battery indicator light went out at lower rpms, but would come back on at higher rpms. The car shuddered, with a loss of power to the cruise control/stereo/cigar lighter. The air bag indicator light flashed briefly, but has not flashed since. The car continues to start and run properly. Any answers to what should be checked next? Thanks
  • lordelpuzlordelpuz Posts: 16
    I have a V Spec Eunos Roadster, 1990,I live in the uk, the last weeks weather has been boiling hot, till now things have been fine, but a couple of days back as i was stuck in traffic the temp dial went up to almost boiling, i pulled over and switched off, the Eunos has two twin fans, one is the aircon or so i have read, but the other wasnt working, and i noticed the previous owner had disconnected the fan under the hood, via the two snap together joints, so i put em back together, everythngs fine, till i get home an find the fan wont go off unless i pull the connections apart again, Ive odered a new tempreture sender from the front section, the one that controls the fan thinking it could be the sender thats packed up, as the fan works when the engines hot or cold once i put the two halves together again, Ive not recieved the new sender yet but just in case thats not the reason i'd be gratefull for any help or ideas..please.
  • greg109greg109 Posts: 5
    Yesterday I was driving and my beloved 01' miata started accelerating on its own. I pushed in the clutch and slowly eased on the brakes and the rpm's stayed at a constant 4000. I pulled over thinking that my throttle cable had gotten stuck some how, but to my surprise it wasn't. The 'check engine' light didn't come on, so I didn't know what it could be. I disconnected the battery cable to reset the computer and started it back up and the engine starting cycling like someone was constantly revving up the engine. I drove it back home all the while it would rev when the clutch was disengaged. I replaced the throttle positioning sensor...$157.00 and it's still cycling. Does anyone know what could be the problem. I'm a great garage mechanic, but this has got me stumped.
  • I have experienced an outage on my gauges. I have changed the fuse repeatedly. Once replaced, the gauges will work for a minute, then blow the fuse. All other electrical seems to be okay. I have resorted to purchasing a bunch of fuses so I can check the fuel level periodically. Help, please!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Must be a bad ground. I've never done much electrical work, only installed a couple of stereos, but I bet that's what is causing it.
  • xylaxyla Posts: 1
    2007 Miata GT - is there a louder alarm to keep from leaving headlights on? Is there a add on control unit to turn headlights off when ignition switch is turned off? Thanks for any help
  • Hi all

    I have a problem with my MX5 and I think it may be electrical.
    I have an erratic idle when stationary, sometimes upto 2000 rpm, when accelerating the engine is hesitant, but if fine as the revs increase. Sometimes the engine just cuts out completely, mainly when stationary. Every now and then I have a strong smell of petrol from the exhaust and at times white smoke, I do not think its coolant getting onto the system as my coolant level has remained the same. I have replaced the plugs but no change, next thing is to change the spark plug leads as i understand MX5's eat thru leads! Also after fitting the new plugs the engine would not start at all. When i took them out plug one and four were cover in black soot. I have had the plugs out a number of times since and have not had this problem again.... Any one have any suggestions?
    Thanks - Steve
    Anyone got any suggestions?
  • I had a similar problem with my 2001. I used some fuel injector cleaner and it has since been okay (crossing my fingers).
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    When I had my 93 I had to change the spark plug wires every 30k else it would sputter similar to what you describe.
  • It could be several things in conjunction that would cause these problems. Usually it's minor issues that arise from regular neglected maintenance. The idling problem could be a clogged fuel filter or dirty injectors. I would check the throttle positioning sensor as well. The white smoke could be from a faulty PCV valve. Those are pretty inexpensive and can be picked up at a local parts store. The gasoline smell in the exhaust could be from restarting and flooding. The soot on the spark plugs is from running cheap gasoline for an extended amount of time. Stay away from cheap gas. You may save at the pump, but you'll pay 10 fold in ignition repairs later down the road.
  • in a low light situation I attached the portable jump starter to the battery but reversed the clamps...positive on the negative's battery was weak also. the wife tried the key and I heard the solenoid click. we were late so I turned off the jumper and we left. I came home later and charged the battery (noticed that the positive was on the left, not the right, what a dumbass. It started fine and I took off. Now the radio, power antenna, inside lights and key fobs are not working? Fuses are all fine...I checked the two fuse box locations unless there happen to be another somewhere. any ideas?
  • The majority of electrical systems work on closed circuits independent from each other. Like for instance, GM vehicles have the stereo system, alarm system, engine electrical and power door locks all on the same circuit. Just like in old Christmas tree lights, if one bulb goes out none of the lights will work.Apply that to your situation. You could have blown a fuse in the back of the stereo unit that would cause the whole circuit not to work. I'm not an electrical expert by any means, but hopefully this will help. It's going to be hard to trace the electrical system because there's no Haynes or Chilton's manuals for an 01' to refer to. I'm in the same boat as you...proud owner of an 01'.
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