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Mazda Protege Maintenance and Repair



  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    The 2002's have a 3 year 50 K warranty...

    ... depending on when you bought it. If you bought your 2002 prior to May, then yes, you're right. If you bought it in June or after, it's a four-year warranty.

    In any case, I still think your problem is a minor one, however. Do keep us informed.

  • There are devices that test a battery "under load", and that is the only way to adequately test a battery. A voltmeter does not do this.
  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,322
    Organic pads can be noisy. Try a semi-metallic or ceramic pad material. Both will wear down the rotors faster, but they make less noise and fade less with prolonged use. They cost a bit more too.

    I think Mazda pads are semi-metallic. At least the new ones I ordered looked semi-metallic to me.
  • jrdwyerjrdwyer Posts: 168
    I assume that the Mazda techs have looked at the main sleeves and the guide plate configurations on the front brakes. For the 90-97 Protege Models there are TSBs concerning front brake noise caused by zinc plated sleeves (replaced with chrome plated ones) and guide plates that need to have claws bent inward at the correct angle. These same sleeves can also cause a popping noise (one pop per wheel rotation) when coming to a stop. A popping noise when simultaneously turning and braking at higher speeds is considered normal.
  • jrdwyerjrdwyer Posts: 168
    I was fearing that the shudder I was having at low-end RPMs in fourth or fifth gears was caused by a clutch going bad. It turns out that it was just the number 2 spark plug wire being defective. I tested them all for resistance with a multi-meter. I also replaced the cap and rotor as the contacts were worn.

    If anyone buys the cap and rotor from AutoZone, be aware that they have the wrong parts listed in their computer for the '95-'98 models. I found the correct match at O'Reilly Auto parts using Borg Warner components. Advanced Auto Parts had the best price for the Bosch spark plug wires, but since they wern't in stock I got them from Rock Auto much sooner for just a few dollars more.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Anyone who's been hanging around here a few years knows I've been on my soapbox about Protege plug wires for YEARS. I owned two 1992 Protege LX's and a 2000 ES, and right now a 2002 Protege5 and a 2005 Mazda3 are in my driveway. Because of their engine design, with the plugs down inside little tunnels inside the valve cover, and the fact that there's a lot of heat down there (and moisture can get down there too), Protege engines need to have their plug wires replaced every 30,000 to 40,000 miles. I've been through the plug-wire-breakdown thing, and believe me, not only is it NOT FUN when it happens -- it's also bad for your engine to be running on less than its full complement of cylinders!

    Spending $60 every 30,000 miles on a new set of plug wires is good insurance -- and it'll make your engine run more smoothly and last longer.

    Replace those plug wires!


    P.S. If you're looking for a good match, try the parts department at your Mazda dealer. When I last replaced mine (about a year ago), they were about $45 for a questionable set from NAPA -- which I wound up having to return because the connectors were the wrong kind (even though they were the correct part number for my car) -- or $60 for an OEM set from Mazda. I opted to spend $15 over 30K miles for the real deal. And the ones from Mazda carry a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty.
  • jrdwyerjrdwyer Posts: 168
    I like Mazda parts for the perfect fit and I tolerate the higher price when I have no other choice. I also use aftermarket parts for the convenience of close part stores and lower prices. Some are good and some not so good (AutoZone example). The Bosch aftermarket plug wires are well-made and come with a lifetime warranty. Since my last set of Bosch wires only lasted 4 years, I will be taking them up on this.

    As far as price, Advanced Auto had the Bosch #09421 wire set for $22 + $5 shipping if not in warehouse and Rock Auto was $31.90 including shipping.
  • I dont know if anyone has had this problem but i just bought a 1998 protege lx and when I shift to 2nd it will not go... even if i have the pedal all the way to the floor. I almost got hit getting on the road cause i wasn't getting any kind of acceleration... my dad thinks it might not be getting enough fuel... got any advice :confuse:
  • Well, the piston hitting the plug would be the most likely cause, although your car is pretty new for a piton or rod to go bad. could it be that the plug is screwing down lower than it should? Check the distance from the top of the installed pug to the top of the valve cover. What could have gotten into the combustion chamber, unless something was dropped in there when the plug was changed?
  • Hello all,

    I have a 2001 Protege and the audio system is broken. Now I have a Cd player deck and need a car audio installation kit for protege?

    Do you know where I can find one?


  • I have the same problems with my 99 automatic protege. After it gets to 25-30 it holds back. I could be going be on the highway going 60 and it will start holding back, with my foot to the floor. My father has also said it could be something with the fuel filter or something. Have you figured out the problem yet?
  • The tale of two Proteges.

    We have two 2000 Proteges, mine is a 2000 1.6L 5-speed that is flawless (probably because it doesn't see winter and does an average of 7000 kms a year.) I'm hoping to run this car for another ten years.

    The other is a 2000 1.8L automatic that is used year-round for average use. Lately, we have had some problems with this car related to steering and starting. The steering gives off a very loud creaking sound when you turn the wheels. Our mechanic couldn't find the source without tearing the steering apart, but suspects that is is from a bushing. Anyone have this problem as well? Also, the engine takes a good five seconds to start after it has been sitting for a while. I suspect a weak battery (its the original) but I just wanted to throw it out there for anyone else.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    How many miles are on the car? Have you replaced your plug wires?

  • On my 01 Protege the air conditioner has a musty, slight mildew smell from it. Will servicing the a/c help any? Also when I have the a/c on, theres a faint hissing or "air deflating" noise; is this normal?
  • I have a 2002 Protege 5, just bought end of May 2005, only has 19k mi on it. Currently I am having a problem with my E-brake light not going off, or not staying off. It either stays on after i release the e brake, or it goes off briefly and comes back on again. I am having no problems braking or accelerating, but the light on worries me. Any suggestions as to the cause or solution?
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Cause: A problem in your braking system.

    Solution: Take the car to your dealership or a good mechanic. NOW.

    It's not just an "e-brake" light. It's a brake system warning light.

  • the stereo was stolen from my mspeed 2003.5 protege and one of the heating/AC control cables is missing. I need a schematic or diagram of the control cables and system

  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Betcha it's the same dash as in the 2002 Protege5! Here's its shop manual:

    ... And I'll bet you find what you need here:

  • I just bought a used 2000 Mazda Protege with 78 K on it. It was in very good condition. Safety certified, e-tested, and we had a mechanic check it out before buying it, who said it was in perfect condition.

    Now, two weeks later the brakes are squealing (which means we will need new brakes-UG!!) and there is a scraping sound coming from the engine with acceleration between 0 and 80 km/h. Anything over that (highway driving) it's fine. I also revved the engine in park, and reproduced the scraping sound. It's coming from the front under the hood. I lifted the hood and couldn't find anything obvious that was loose. It's gotten a lot worse in the last three days.

    Any idea what it could be? We really are BROKE from buying this car, and can't afford serious repairs if we can help it. Can anyone point me in a direction to look? I'm more familiar with older cars (80's) and their repair. I don't know as much about newer cars.

    Anything ANYONE could suggest would be great!
  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,322
    Check They offer a lot of information on what fits and usually have wire harness adapters that save you time and effort crimping & soldering. There are other on-line resources and of course, Best Buy and Circuit City also offer equipment that will fit and usually include the installation.
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