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Mazda Protege Maintenance and Repair



  • I was on a steep incline facing downwards and put my Protege ES (2001, AT, 1 week old) into reverse and took my foot off the brake, and the car slid forward (and down). Is this normal? I did the same thing on my friend's old Buick Regal (also AT) and the car stayed put, so I'm not sure if this rolling forward happens to all Mazdas, or if I have a problem. I was under the impression that with AT, the gears lock into position when put into reverse. I live in SF, so this is a major concern. Could someone with experience in this matter post a response? Thanks!
  • nikecarnikecar Posts: 460
    I'm just posting what I said I found on NHTSA website. and I did, in the last paragraph, mention that giving you the benefit of the doubt (BOTD), there will be 1 TSB or Recall on the civic. go reread it. The civic, giving you the BOTD, will have either 1 TSB or 1 Recall now. So a 2 yr old designed car has as many TSB/Recalls as a newly designed Civic.

    The Focus, in its 2nd yr has a recall. The Civic in its first new major body change has either 1 TSB or 1 Recall. sad for the focus.
  • nikecarnikecar Posts: 460
    If the incline is steep enough, gravity will exert a much stronger influence than the engine will in reverse. seeing as you did not have your foot on the gas, just in plain reverse, it is possible that the car will go forward. Just as if you were aimed up the hill and put the car in D and without your foot on the gas, the car could go back.
  • leomortleomort Posts: 451
    hello al,

    I'm thinking about getting a Mazda Protege, probably the 5 door hatchback which is suppose to come out this June as a 2002 model. In general how reliable are the Protege's? I'll be switching from a Toyota to the Mazda. Also how reliabe is the new 2.0L engine that they put into the Protege? I heard this engine came from the 626.

  • My 91 auto. stalls and when I try to restart I have no dash lights therefore it turns over but won't start. Anywhere from immediately to 5 minutes the dash lights return and I can fire the car up.

    It happens mostly in stop and go traffic, when slowing to a stop and in mild weather and rarely happens on the highway and in cold weather.

    The dealer has replaced the distributer, engine temp sensor, ignitor and ignition module.

    This car needs to live on...please help.

  • nikecarnikecar Posts: 460
    alternator or battery. My car would stall and the lights go out when the battery was dead. As a result of the alternator failing.
  • lgblgb Posts: 30
    I havent posted in a while but a few of us 00 manual Protege owners also noticed various clunks on shifting (as well as hesitation inbetween the lower gears). I think maybe one person had a real problem (differential) but the rest of us seem to have accepted clunks as "normal". I'm at 11,500 miles now and I either dont notice or dont hear clunks any more. I deal with the hesitation by shifting at higher rpms. If anyone has anymore info on clunking or hesitating, please post!
  • Yeah, I don't think I'm going to worry about it anymore either. If other associated symptoms seem to start, I'll look into it further(i.e. won't shift, slips or starts clanging). Just want to enjoy my little sport and stop sweating the small stuff.
  • This sure is one of the slowest problem boards of the bunch. Makes me feel great about my decision to go Pro, but if things don't pick up in this board it may get the heave ho. That would be a shame since in maybe 5 or 6 years we may have a problem we want to share.
    Maybe we need to start making up problems or referring to the ridiculous.
    Like, I had to put some air in my tires the other day, is this covered by warranty?LOL
  • ny10ny10 Posts: 4
    Hi, I really need some help. I've got a 1992 MAZDA 323 that has a recurring stalling problem
    that no one has been able to solve. If you have advice about how to solve it, or if you know
    where I can get good advice (via another web-posting or some other source), I'd really appreciate
    hearing from you.

    The pattern of stall-outs is seemingly indecipherable. It will stall on the highway or just going
    around the block. It usually gives a hesitation or two, and the accelerator becomes useless for
    10-60 seconds before it stalls completely. It's a standard transmission, and if necessary while
    driving I can turn the car turn the car off as the stall threatens and then turn it back on–and it then runs fine again. Likewise, if it stalls out completely, I can turn off the car and then start it
    immediately with no problem. The interval between stall-outs is usually at least a day and
    sometimes weeks. Go figure.

    This problem first occurred in about 1993. No one could solve it, but it disappeared. Then it
    returned a few years after that. And now it's back again, off and on since the fall of 2000.

    Here's a record of what my latest mechanic has tried:

    –Tried to duplicate problem but couldn't.

    –Completed tuneup: sparkplugs, cap, rotor, air filter, fuel filter, oil change.

    –Checked for computer fault codes. Found code 17. This code refers to the oxygen sensor, the fuel pressure regulator, fuel pump, and the computer itself.

    –Fuel-pressure test showed fuel pressure to be just a touch above normal (if it was lower than
    normal it would have been a good chance that it was source of the stalling problem). This test
    was done with the car hooked to a gas analyzer which registers the fuel/air ratio.

    –Replaced oxygen sensor and fuel pressure regulator, and checked these new parts with the car hooked to the gas analyzer. The car was run for quite a while and monitored throughout the day but never stalled, nor did the fuel/air ratio change at anytime. Car stalled out several days later, and a few more times after that.

    –With no facts to condemn the fuel pump or computer (which are the only items left that the fault code refers to), the mechanic feels there is not much else to do except replace the fuel pump and/or computer. But these items are not cheap and there is no guarantee that they will fix the problem.

    Please help! Thanks.

  • I would think if the fuel pressure test showed good readings, this would likely eliminate the fuel pump, wouldn't it? Have you tried a mazda dealer or are you going to independents?
    Isn't there a way to test the computer without replacing it first? I know, more questions than answers, sorry.
  • ny10ny10 Posts: 4
    Thanks, fritz1224. In the past, I did take my 323 to Mazda dealers for an opinion, but they never had an answer, and the independents have always had more time/interest in figuring out this puzzle. But maybe it is time to try a dealer again, perhaps especially for a check of a Mazada-specific computer. Take care. --ny10
  • atuzaiatuzai Posts: 47
    I bought a 93 protege LX two years ago. It is a wonderful car, no any big problem till now. When I bought it, it had 110K mi on it. Now it is about 140K mileage on it. I do not know much about car, I just change oil every 3k mi and tire rotation every 7K mi. nothing else for maintenance. Since 30k already put on it from when I got it. I am wondering what kind of maintenance I should do for it. anyone could give me some suggestion? like every ??K to what what. Thanks!
  • speedyptspeedypt Posts: 200
    Your owners manual is your best guide for all that, but some things I would watch...

    60k(120k, 180k, etc) the $180 and have the timing belt changed.

    Plugs...platinum tipped plugs are my personal favorites.

    Plug wires on the older Protege's seemed to go bad on me about every 45k or so, can act like a power loss or rough running condition.

    Use a bottle of fuel injector cleaner every 10k or so (I like Chevron Fuel System cleaner with Techron...about $7)

    Change your tranny fluid and coolant every other year

    Hope that helps!


  • nikecarnikecar Posts: 460
    replace fuel and air filter.
  • speedyptspeedypt Posts: 200
    Buy a K&N Air Filter and just clean it every 30k-50k and save money in the long run!


  • nikecarnikecar Posts: 460
    I hope that's a typo.. 30-50K between filter cleanings? The oil will get massivley clogged waiting that long.
  • I have a pair of those, for dancing. :)

    Actually, I think he means the air filter, not the oil filter.
  • atuzaiatuzai Posts: 47
    It is really helps. The problem is my old car did not have owners manual. That is the reason why I asked what I should do. Could someone input some main point for that?

    BTW, I will need drive about 60 miles everyday from now on. It is lots of miles will put on it. Thinking about buy a new one but as a student, $ is the big problem. So anyone could give me some idea how long Protege will live for this condition? 170K? 180K? or 200K?

  • speedyptspeedypt Posts: 200
    It's not a typo. You can go 30-50k miles between cleanings if you don't live in too dusty an area. I personally have cleaned mine every 15k-20k. The destructions for the filter (and on their website) say you can go up to 50k between cleanings. Fully saturated with dirt and oil, they still pass nearly as much airflow as a new paper filter.

    39.95 once for the K&N vs. 11.95 every 10k for paper. I'll take the K&N and do my cleanings every 15-20k. Recharge kit only costs 6.95 at the local motorcycle shop and lasts 4-5 cleanings. K&N state a 2-4% increase in power using their replacement filter, but I didn't notice all that much difference.


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