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Mazda Protege Maintenance and Repair



  • bdkaybdkay Posts: 6
    Our 2003 Mazda Protege has been clicking on the check engine light for 2 years now. We are now at 133,000 km or about 81,000 miles and it all started at about 40,000 miles. Spark plugs, coil pack, wires EGV valve have all been replaced. Our fuel injectors have been 'blown'. Our dealer has done the work under our extended warranty. Mazda Canada will not do any more work without further investigation! Our PCV valve has been replaced yesterday and today because a yahoo in one shop broke the new valve installing it. Then we had the blinking light of death near another garage who correctly installed the valve. My investigation on the net says it could be one of the cylinders is malfunctioning. We have a common problem. Why are the dealers not connecting?
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    Our 2003 Mazda Protege has been clicking on the check engine light for 2 years now. Spark plugs, coil pack, wires EGV valve have all been replaced. Our fuel injectors have been 'blown'. Our dealer has done the work under our extended warranty.
    We're glad you had an extended warranty! Have you modified the engine (e.g. by adding components)?

    p.s. EGR valve
  • kpozzikpozzi Posts: 2
    my 01 protege lx 2.0 has 98000. Over the last 2-3 years it would occasionally lose some power, then catch up. Now its getting worse. 2 mechanics and the mazda dealership cant figure it out, it comes up rapid random misfire. I can be on the highway and drive steady, then it loses its power,for a 3-5 mile stretch, I'm losing speed with it floored, then it catches up. My recent mechanic charged my 650$ for the O2 sensors, and it didnt fix it. Now he says it can be the EGR valve or coil packs. I cant afford to have him do more work....should I press him to fix it for already paid funds? thanks
  • bdkaybdkay Posts: 6
    I would not pay any more for something that may or may not work. We have had the EGR valve and coil packs done under our warranty but it was still happening until the day of my first posting when we had our PCV valve was replaced. Our PCV might have been at fault; it is too soon to tell. The catalytic converter possibly; but that problem has NEVER been suggested to us.

    PCV valve should NOT be at fault; in the old days it might have been. An older mechanic disagreed with a younger one on whether that could be the problem. I think it's like doctors depends what they have seen. We are still in wait and see mode.

    My research has come up with a simple cylinder compression test as the culprit. Has this been done? Try searching on PCV valve random misfire and you will find an article on the subject.

    Let me know.
  • kpozzikpozzi Posts: 2
    no, the cylinder compression test have not been done. The mechanics says that the CAT was ok, since the catalytic code was not present. The PCV has been replaced, full tune up, and O2 sensors have been changed. I'm close to 1000$ into this with no the way, it passes inspection fine. Thanks
  • coolpetecoolpete Posts: 30
    I have a strange problem with my 1990 Mazda Protege (323 - 1.8L DOHC) - the car starts up fine on a dry and sunny day but it will not start on a rainy day or if it has rained hard the previous day and there is some moisture in the air and on the windshield.

    It cranks but it will not start on these kind of days but on a sunny day it will start right up like nothing is wrong with it. I had the battery amps checked and eventhough the battery is 4 years old, it is cranking out the right amps and so that can be ruled out as the problem.

    One of my coworker is telling me that this is due to some moisture issues and I need to replace the rotor and rotor cap....does any one else have this issue? What could be the problem here?

    Please help!
  • When sitting at a light the engine will run slightly rough for a few seconds then get worse where I think it will stall then kick back up to a slightly rough idle. It hasn't stalled yet. When driving, the engine seems to run fine (in town and at highway speeds).

    The check engine light will also come on about once a week with a P0170 code. According to the book my OBCD reader came with it is a 'Fuel Trim Malfunction'.

    I'd appreciate some suggestions on what I should look at.

    Background info:
    EGR valve replaced three years ago (at a shop)
    I put in a new alternator and belt 1 month ago (did I damage something while removing the old alternator??)
  • schesneyschesney Posts: 3
    I haven't had that problem with my Protege, but I did have a mercury that if the engine got wet it would stall, turned out I had a crack in my rotor you might try to change the rotor or find some way to seal it with a moisture proofer to keep the moisture out of it.
  • coolpetecoolpete Posts: 30
    How do I locate the rotor cap on the Protege? Is it easy to replace?
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    Yes, it's easy to replace. The distributor mounts in the end of the cylinder head. Simply unscrew the two screws to remove the cap and move the plug wires to the new cap, one at a time. Re-install the cap the same way the old one came off.
  • bdkaybdkay Posts: 6
    We passed our emission test here in Ontario also. We have an extended warranty to 100,000 miles or 160,000 km or we would be into the dealer for over $1000 also. Car goes in next week for another check.

    It sometimes smells of gasoline and gas mileage is down about one third. Light went out the other day for about half and hour.
  • civiletticiviletti Posts: 86
    I've not had this problem with my pro, but distrubutor cap cracks are a common reason for this problem. The pro also tends to go through sparkplug wires. I would replace them every 35,000 miles. Oh, it could also be a cracked ignition coil.
  • edmund2460edmund2460 Posts: 293
    I'm at 62K on my ES2.0 2001 and so far it's been a great car. It's first failure took place today when the battery finally died. Other than that not a single problem. Hope that lasts a while longer.

    The dealer quotes $800 to get all the belts and water pump changed and I know I can save half of that using the mechanics I've been going to for 25 years. They work primarily on VW's but do other foreign cars as well. They are excellent mechanics and very honest. But they are probably old school and not keeping up with current models.

    My question: Is there anything special about changing a timing belt and water pump in my 01 Protege that would make it highly desirable to take it to the dealer? Thanks.
  • jmazdajjmazdaj Posts: 3
    I bought my '98 mazda protege with 50,000 miles on it about a year ago. Right now I am at 60,000 and have been having this same problem for about 6 months. When I am driving my car around 50 or 60 mph, my RPM's will go crazy and slide rapidly between 3000 and 4000. While doing this, it feels like my car is being pulled (almost like the car is on a rubber band--pulled backwards then released forwards). No mechanic has been able to identify the problem yet. So far, I have had my spark plugs replaced, some wiring replaced, and my fuel injectors cleaned.
    The other day my check engine light came on, and the code was for my wiring, and for the coil number 4. It went away when I got the wiring fixed.
    Also my gas mileage has goign downhill lately...
    Any help would be appreciated
  • user777user777 Posts: 3,341
    seems like that may be your torque convertor in the transmission going into and outof lockup or maybe there is a solenoid or a hydraulic fluid passage problem in the transmission case or issue with fluid quality impacting transmission operation. have you ever had the transmission fluid serviced? have you ever inspected it's color?

    i guess i'd explain the symptoms to a local mazda tech and see what they think.
  • pbrwolf2pbrwolf2 Posts: 2
    2003 Protégé ES, 71,000 miles. Last night the “Check Engine” light came on suddenly and car started running rough. Code was P0304 “Cylinder #4 misfire detected”. So I replaced the plugs. Old plugs looked great except for #4, on that one, instead of the normal gap, the ground electrode was touching the center electrode, in other words “almost no gap”. I don’t think it’s been like that since 2003, so how does that happen? Cars runs great again but what flattened that electrode? Anyone have any ideas? Thanks!
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    2003 Protégé ES, 71,000 miles

    Are you certain you haven't had your spark plugs changed since 2003? Normally, it's done after 24 months (in your case, 2005 perhaps?).
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    This can happen from carbon build-up, but it's not common.
  • jf3489jf3489 Posts: 1
    Had the timing belt and water pump recently replaced. The car was running fine and just quit on the way home. Now it will not start. Tried to start it on starter fluid with the same results so I am pretty sure that this is a spark problem. I installed a new distributor with the same results. I at a loss, any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
  • maltbmaltb Posts: 3,572
    Well your description leaves little to go on but I would look to the timing belt as it was the last thing done and the distributor is driven from the end of the cam.

    With the distributor cap off, look to see if the distributor rotor moves when the engine is cranked. If it doesn't, your belt is toast.
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