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Mazda3 Maintenance & Repair

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  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    The actual dent is gone -If I look from the front I can't see anything - but from the drivers seat plus some sun light - I can see the outline of where the dent was.

    I parked next to a red Mazda3 i yesterday and it had a dent in the same place.

    Could be I am not the only one that leans on the hood when I wash the windshield.
  • mpg60mpg60 Posts: 71
    Meade, you are a total mess. How's that 3 doin these days, mine is sweeter than the day I bought it.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Yep, mess I am! Working 12-hour days the past three days (Wednesday morning I left for work at 3:30 a.m.!!!), picking up the kiddo from daycare, doing the grocery shopping, cooking the dinners ... OH, WOE IS ME!!! :cry:

    About the only fun I've gotten this week has been the 30-minute commute either side of work.

    To answer your question ... my Velocity Red 2005 Mazda3S hatch -- with 5-speed, but of course -- is loggin' up them miles with ultra-reliable rapidity.

    I just crossed 9,000 last night!!! :cry:

    This car is proving to be just as reliable as the three Proteges I've owned in the past and my wife's Protege5 that's sitting in our driveway (actually, right now it's zooming its way to her place of employment -- hopefully she's keeping it in the road. It's a 2002 and it's got 54,000 trouble-free miles on it).

    Meade
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I parked next to a red Mazda3 i yesterday and it had a dent in the same place.

    Interesting.

    The hood on my 2000 Protege was smooth all the way across, and it used to "give" a little when I leaned on it while waxing, changing wiper blades, etc. They changed the hood in 2001 (and it carried over into my wife's 2002 Protege5), where it now had a crease running down the center of the hood from grille to windshield. My wife's car's hood is much more resistant to "giving" under pressure.

    I'll say this -- the sheet metal on the 3 feels more substantial still than the metal on the last-generation Protege -- hood crease or not. Of course, I have a 3 hatch, and as you know the 3 hatch has a more sculpted hood than the sedan. Possibly this contributes to the 3's hood feeling more substantial. It is interesting that they kept the crease in the center of the 3 sedan's hood but it's not present in the 3 hatch's hood. I guess the sculpting down the sides strengthens the hatch's hood -- kinda like that physics experiment where you can make a bridge strong enough to hold a couple of pounds out of a sheet of paper by putting a lot of folds in the paper.

    Consider these (large, sorry) pics:

    http://media.mazda.ch/dossiers/mazda3/images/high/MAZDA3_CD2_04.jpg

    http://media.mazda.ch/dossiers/mazda3/images/high/mazda3_27.jpg

    Meade
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    Looks are subjective - but IMO the hood of the sedan looks better - on the sedan - the hood on the hatch - looks better on the hatch.

    My daughter plays soccer with a girl - her mother has a HB - she had to replace the grill because some guy backed into her in the Walmart parking lot. (Then he just drove away).

    She was explaining to me how she replaced the damaged part herself - and then she says - I guess you already know how this fits together since you own a Mazda3. So I say - but mine is a sedan - they are different. She says - no way they are the same - and actually goes out into the parking lot and looks at both cars!

    The details are lost on some people.
  • dridedride Posts: 139
    My wipers suck. When I clean the windshield while driving, I am blinded temporarily. I thought it was the washer fluid from the factory, so I replaced and it is still bad. Can anyone recommend good wipers? Do people still have luck with Rain-X or is that bad? On a better note, I got 33 mpg on my last trip to SD.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    You really want to blow her away? Tell her there is not one piece of sheet metal shared between the hatch and the sedan. It's true.

    Meade
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Agreed. The stock wipers are Boschs and, while Bosch makes good spark plugs and electronics, I don't think they've got their act together in the rubber department. I've got 9,000 miles on my 3 and I'm about to replace mine just because of all my industrial-area highway driving and all the gunk I've had to remove from my windshield with them.

    I replaced the stock wipers on my old 2000 Protege, and on my wife's 2002 Protege5, with Anco wipers (not just blade refills, but the part that holds them as well). BIG difference -- best $25 I ever spent on my Protege. The blades themselves were more substantial too and seemed to "grip" the windshield better.

    Meade
  • Have you checked the windshield glass' surface? If there's a coating of road film or other "gunk" you may need to clean the glass thoroughly. I use "Bon Ami" cleanser for this. It's safe to use and works great, though hard to find in some areas. Others have said that "Soft Scrub" cleaner also works. I haven't tried "Soft Scrub" myself.
  • audia8qaudia8q Posts: 3,138
    either try jpmccormac suggestion or use windex and wipe it down with newspaper.. Your hands get dirty but the glass will never be cleaner.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,674
    My perfect 3 did not want to start this morning.

    I was attempting to see what mpg I could get, only got 27mpg (on-ramps to enticing), so I went till the fuel indicator light went on. We were having a garage sale the next day so I parked out on my STEEP driveway (first time leaving it out overnight). In the morning it was very humid and cool.

    I tried a few times, even depressing the gas pedal to the floor and it would NOT START :surprise: just cranked over. Later in the day I rolled it down the driveway to a level portion and it started up :confuse:

    Not sure of the issue, but a little disconcerting.
  • z71billz71bill Posts: 2,000
    Normally if you park with the car pointed UP hill it is not a problem -

    When my fuel light comes on it takes 12.5 gallons to fill it up - so I have about 2 gallons left. Seems like 2 gallons should be enough fuel to not be a problem.

    Not sure about the Mazda3 - but some cars have the fuel pump in the gas tank - if you run out of gas you can hear the pump running - it makes a WRRRRR sound. Very bad for the fuel pump to run it dry.
  • mazda6smazda6s Posts: 1,901
    If the fuel gets real low parking on an incline could cause a problem, depending on where the fuel outlet/pickup is on the tank - front, middle or rear. This problem isn't unique the Mazda3.
  • prdmprdm Posts: 145
    BTW, pushing gas pedal to floor during start cycle shuts off flow to injectors; it's used to clear a flooded condition. Agree with others about gas pickup being left high and dry due to slope.
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,674
    I thought that might be the case, but I had my Nissan mini-van parked out side as well and it started right up.

    The Nissan was on the “reserve”, i.e. fuel indicator light on, much longer than the 3. The 3’s light JUST turned on; not that you could compare the two in that situation since the Nissan has a bigger reserve and is a different type of vehicle (would a Civic have displayed a similar problem?).

    Not sure why we had both vehicles sitting there with the fuel lights on…we never wait that long.

    My driveway is pretty steep and when I finally re-fueled I put in 12.1 gallons so there should have been a little left in…oh well…just never happened to me before; if that was the problem then I can deal with that.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I've got 9,000 miles on my 2005 Mazda3 and I've never put more than 12 gallons in it. If I refuel within 20 miles of my fuel light coming on, I invariably wind up putting 11.5 gallons in the car.

    Meade
  • Same here, except for the last time pump went all the way to 12.2. After driving since, it seems that my fuel guage has not dropped as much as I expected. Contributing factors: still a new car and the pump shut off was a bit delay???

    Pump auto shut off isn't a sure thing. In fact, I can imagine where some pumps may spill over when fueling due to defects (e.g. computer glitch, etc.).
  • I've been looking at the Mazda 3s for a couple of weeks now, and I am really interested in the car. Yesterday, however, a friend of mine said, "You know that's basically a Focus with a different body, right?"

    Is there any truth to that? I bought a 2002 Focus brand new and sold it in early 2004 because it was not holding up the way I thought a car should. I don't want "another" Focus.

    Steve Edge
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,674
    If it is a Focus it is an amazing Focus…I believe that the platform is currently being used in the European Focus (or Focus II…something like that). I think it will make it’s debut in the 2007 or 2008 American Focus.

    Platform sharing does not mean the same car. I read a definition recently, can’t find it, that described what exactly is shared…and it really isn’t much. It saves a bit on engineering and manufacturing when platforms are “shared”.

    I prefer to think of my Mazda 3 as sharing it’s platform with the Volvo S40 (which it currently does).
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Yesterday, however, a friend of mine said, "You know that's basically a Focus with a different body, right?"

    He was very wrong. The Mazda3 and the U.S. Focus have virtually nothing in common except for rear suspension design (but they don't even share parts there).

    Meade
  • From those with experience, does it really work???
  • RE The Mazda3 and the U.S. Focus have virtually nothing in common except for rear suspension design (but they don't even share parts there).

    I believe the Focus engine is made by Mazda and is virtually the same as used in the Mazda 3.
  • mazda6smazda6s Posts: 1,901
    Steve (themoon77) - If you buy a Mazda3 you won't be getting another Focus. On the other hand, your friend doesn't seem to know much at all about the Mazda3 so you might want to consult with another friend for car buying advice. :)
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Virtually the same is a good way of saying it. From the Car Connection:

    While every other change aboard the 2005 Focus is evolutionary, the implantation of two new engines is radical surgery. Gone are the Ford-designed Zetec 2.0-liter engines and in their place are Mazda-designed 2.0- and 2.3-liter powerplants wearing the Duratec label. Shared with the Mazda3, these new all-aluminum Duratecs don't differ much from the iron-block Zetecs in general specification; they're still fours wearing DOHC heads with four valves over each combustion chamber. But Ford claims they'll emit about 32-percent less noxious gases while delivering 24-percent more power and slightly better fuel economy.

    The base 2.0-liter Duratec knocks out 136 horsepower in the Focus which is a 26-horsepower improvement over last year's base SPI eight-valve, and up six horsepower over the optional 130-horsepower Zetec. The 2.3-liter Duratec, which is currently restricted to the range-topping Focus ZX4 ST sport sedan (the 2005 Focus that comes closest to replacing last year's 170-horsepower SVT) is rated at 151 horsepower.


    Interesting that the same "Duratecs" (actually they're called MZR in the Mazda) put out 148 and 160 hp, respectively, in the Mazda3. I guess Mazda kept the good stuff for themselves!

    The two engines may be the "same" as far as displacement and construction goes, but Mazda (using VIS or whatever) has found a way to keep them different enough for me!

    Here's a link to how Mazda usurps all that power out of the MZR. Still looking, but I can't find similar info on how Ford has the Duratec tuned out ...

    http://www.mazdausa.com/MusaWeb/displayPage.action?pageParameter=mazdaSpeedDrivingEngineMZ- - R23

    "Similar" engines or not, they are not the same car by any stretch. But don't just take my word for it. Here's a recent comparison test Motor Trend magazine did between the 2005 Mazda3s, Ford Focus ZX4 ST, Toyota Corolla XRS, Kia Spectra SX and Chevrolet Cobalt LS:

    http://motortrend.com/roadtests/sedan/112_0507_citylites/

    It's a long article, so I'll summarize: Out of the five cars, the Mazda3 came in first. The Focus was fourth -- beaten by the Mazda3, Corolla and Kia in that order.

    Meade
  • Aren't the Ford's tuned for PZEV while the Mazda's claim SULEV (LEV to ULEV to SULEV to PZEV)?

    This may explain the diff in HP. Just in California alone, I believe, the Mazda 2.3 is rated at 156 HP and is still a SULEV with a couple of gadgets added. The HP is reduced slightly for a cleaner tail pipe, but as technology marches ahead, so does HP.
  • richmlrichml Posts: 156
    Are they all being recalled due to exhaust problems?
  • mazda6smazda6s Posts: 1,901
    "Are they all being recalled due to exhaust problems?"

    Yes, but you might want to check the Mazda5 discussions for info on that.
  • I own a 2004 Mazda3 hatchback. I have large paint chunks that have come off of both the rear bumber along a pointed edge in an area not easily hit by a skipping rock or other road debris and another on the lower side panel towards the rear aswell. The car is black....is anyone having this happen or has anyone heard of this being a problem?
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I would venture to say you got bumped in a parking lot.

    Meade
  • nifty56nifty56 Posts: 279
    NO in my opinion a waste of money. Used in airplane tires, long haul truck tires and race cars. The nitrogen reacts well under stress and is perdicatable. In day to day driving we don't need such precision.
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