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Chevrolet/Geo Metro

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  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    I called a Chevy dealer on this one; they looked up the fuel module, and said it was located inside the fuel tank, and contained the fuel pump and a sensor. They also verified the outrageous price (theirs was $1300). Unfortunately, they were unable to provide more specific information about the type of sensor that it was.

    I then went online to Rock Auto's website. They listed two different types of sensors which are located inside the tank on that car. One is a fuel tank pressure sensor, which they sell under AC Delco part #30020521, for $176.79. The other sensor is a fuel level sensor and float assembly, which is for the gas gauge. That one costs less than $100. I expect that the fuel tank pressure sensor is the one you need. And, if that is the case; then the $1,000 plus dealership price for the module is simply GM's way of robbing the public (because the pump only costs less than $200). I've seen this kind of pricing before, on Metro dealership parts.

    Now, they may have some kind of weird connector in that assembly that self destructs when you try to replace the sensor; or a secret sensor which is not available separately (which I rather doubt) but otherwise it would be practical to just buy a new fuel tank pressure sensor. However, it would be a safer bet to just buy a complete fuel tank from a 2001 Metro at a wrecking yard. It would be important to make VERY sure the tank came from a 2001 model car (unless the wrecking yard has an interchange book that clearly states that other year Metro tanks are interchangeable). And many wrecking yards have a hotline, through which they can put out a call for a specific part to other yards in the vicinity, or there are also nationwide hotlines. But there is always the risk that someone at the wrecking yard ignores your request, and pulls a tank from a different year Metro. So you have to be extra careful about that.

    I hope that helps!

    Joel
  • Thanks a ton! i appreciate all your help, i sucessfully swapped the fuel module with one i found in a salvage yard and it fixed the problem for the most part; performance is back and car runs as it should. one last problem however, the pump has been having an intermittent problem; it fails to bring the system up to pressure before the starter turns. it can take up to ten minutes sometimes before i hear the little whirr sound the pump makes when priming the fuel lines. i suspect that it is an electrical problem somwhere most likely a bad connection or something like that but i really don't know. if so, where should i start looking, and if not, else what should i be looking for?
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    I would make VERY sure that the ground wire for the tank, and for the fuel pump is solidly bolted to a surface that has been scraped clean of corrosion or any debris. In addition, if the body at that point has become substantially corroded, I would run a dedicated, 12 gauge ground lead from the pump back to the battery ground cable. Similar attention should be given to any plug in connectors in the pump supply circuit. The cleanliness of the fuse for the fuel pump circuit is equally important. If those measures do not correct the problem, I would replace the relay for the fuel pump.

    I'm glad you had some success, and I hope this completes the job.

    Joel
  • I have a 1991 Geo Metro LSI, 2 door hatchback. I cannot find a distributor cap that fits. All references from part stores including the chevy dealership gives out the smaller diameter model. I need the slightly larger one. Which cap goes with what motor. My distributor cap I have now is about to die. I need to find one that fits and I am at a loss. Being a girl dosen't help the guys behind the counter look at me like (what a dumb girl). My car is my everything, and its dying on me. HELP :sick:
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    Hello,
    The Geo Metro 1.0 and 1.3 liter motors each take very different distributor caps. The 1.0 liter motor has 3 cylinders, and takes a distributor cap that has 3 spark plug wire sockets on it (for the wires which go to the 3 spark plugs on the 1.0 engine). I believe that is the cap which everybody has been showing you; because the 1.3 liter 4 cylinder motor did not come out in the Metro until 1992.

    The 1.3 liter motor has 4 cylinders, and its distributor cap has 4 spark plug wire sockets. Because of the additional wire socket, this cap probably is slightly larger in diameter than the cap for the 3 cylinder motor.

    I believe that, if you go to a parts store and ask for a cap to fit a 1992 Metro, with the 1.3 liter 4 cylinder motor; they will give you a cap that fits your car.

    It may well be that the manufacturing label on your door jamb states that the car was manufactured in 1991. Your registration certificate may also say 1991. However, the year of manufacture is not always the same as the vehicle's model year. The 1992 model year cars probably began to be produced in September 1991 (or possibly even a month or two before September). Manufacturers do that every year, so that the new models will arrive at the dealerships before the new year begins.

    There originally was a white label with tune up and emission information on it, on the underside of the car's hood. On this label is listed the vehicle model year, for which this car was certified. And that is the year model which you need to use when buying parts; regardless of the year in which the car was manufactured. In addition, if your car has 4 spark plugs, your car has the 1.3 liter engine. If that is the case, you do NOT have a 1.0 liter engine. And if you say "1.0 or 1.3 liter engine"; it will cause much needless confusion. It is necessary to specifically know which engine size your car has, in order to ask for the right parts; since many parts are not interchangeable between those 2 engines.

    I hope this helps!!!
    Joel
  • hi. just bought a 96 metro 2dr for my daughter and have a few questions.

    1) it has a 1.3 ltr engine and i'll be darned if i can find the fuel rail. it's supposed to have efi, but i can only find a carb. this can't be right, can it?

    2) the car is from florida and the top of the dash is very faded. how to fix?
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 5,859
    Hopefully a Metro owner will chime in here, but until then another place you might want to post your questions would be in the Got a Quick, Technical Question? discussion on the Maintenance and Repair board.

    Sometimes it can be hard to find fellow owners of an older vehicle, but the savvy folks that hang out on M&R are well versed in automotive knowledge and always willing to help!

    MODERATOR
    Need help navigating? pf_flyer@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.
    Share your vehicle reviews

  • I have a 1992 Geo Metro with a 1.0L, 3 cyl engine. Engine runs great, but the auto transmission has attitude problems comparative to that of a human teenager. That being said, here's my problem.....Sometimes my transmission will go into gear and shift correctly when driving, and sometimes it won't. When it won't, it's as if it's stuck in 3rd gear. When this happens I have to drop it into L and work my way up to D shifting it manually. A "mechanic" has told me that mechanically, my tranny looks great and that the problem is the auto transmission control module. I'm good with that, but where is it, and what does it look like? The mechanic seem to think that it's on the right side of the steering column???? but not sure. Any ideas? If you've had a like problem how did you fix it?
  • How did you obtain the ring gear and pinion for your manual transmission? From a used trans or was it new. Part Number?
    Thanks,
    Cedarwind1
  • I got it second hand. It's from a group of guys who soup up their cars. They install lower geared 3 cyl. ring and pinion. Perfect condition. They will swap a 4 cyl for a three for free. The ring and pinion that is.
  • the first thing you need to do is determin whether it is a 3 cyl or 4 cyl, since the 91 geo metro only came with a 3 cyl, if it is a 4 cyl than someone has replaced the drivetrain with a suzuki swift. so if you have a 4 cyl ask for a distributor cap for a suzuki swift (they only come with 4 cyl.) hope this helps :)
  • I have been reading this forum for the last two hours (I found it very enjoyable) and I decided to ask a question I can't find the answer to.

    I have a '98 Chevy Metro 3-cylinder hatchback with 80,000 miles. 5-speed. This car is NOT equipped with air conditioning.

    Last May, my car would not accelerate over 45mph. If I tried to go faster than that, I smelled a burning smell, exactly like a burning rubber smell. I opened the hood and could smell it but I couldn't exactly narrow it down. Yeah, I could smell it by the alternator, but in other areas too.

    A friend and I removed the alternator and it spun freely. Took it to AutoZone and it checked out OK. Pulleys are fine. During the same trip, I removed the battery and AutoZone put it on their tester. The battery was draining fast. I figured the alternator was working extra hard to keep the battery charged. I replaced the battery with a DieHard and the acceleration problem vanished.

    Fast forward a little over two months later and the problem is back. On three ocassions in early August the car would emit that same burning smell and I could not drive past 40 or 45mph. After a couple weeks, the smell doesn't come back, and the power seemed OK for a few days (although I was only doing city driving). I had to make a 40-mile highway trip. This time, the car would not move past 55mph or the burning smell returned. So, I had to drive at 55mph. Since then, I was unable to get it narrowed down and I began college (which is 100 miles one way from home), driving the entire way at 55 with no problems. I tried to push it further, but I had to floor the accelerator just to barely get it to 60. But, no burning smell on that ocassion.

    I have made two round-trips to home and back in the last three weeks, going 55mph, and the burning smell has not returned. But, it still doesn't want to go any faster.

    Here in the college town, the car is sluggish going up hills (I often have to keep it in third gear just to have more power; I never had to do that before) and the problems persist. Acceleration is a hair slower, but the real problems come when trying to go faster than 40 or 45. The odor has not returned as of late.

    So, the problem was solved for a little over two months when I replaced the battery. Then it comes back. It's not the clutch. It's NOT a sticky brake caliper in the front or sticking rear brakes. I had the automotive instructor at my old school (community college) go for a ride with me and I asked him if he thought it could be a plugged converter. He said he highly doubts it is the converter. I don't think it is either.

    The air filter is only 1,000 miles old. The intake hose is not plugged. I changed the spark plugs to no avail. I checked the PCV valve just for the hell of it and it's fine. I had a battery shop test the battery while the car was idling and was told there is no problem, and the alternator is charging the battery.

    From the day this started, the "CHARGE" light has never illuminated, nor has a "CHECK ENGINE" light.

    For a 10-year-old car with 80K, what else could it be? I thought about the spark plug wires, but the car is not missing. The distributor is original. The ignition coil is original. I thought about the EGR valve, but then my mind goes back to thinking it's electrical related because of the battery replacement. The timing belt looks excellent as has not been touched. At 80K, I do not believe that to be the problem

    I have to make a trip back home again in a month and I want to get this fixed permanently once and for all. I'm worried because I'm a poor college student. This car has not been neglected (I change the oil every 2,000 with 5W-30, flush the cooling system once a year). My friend and I who work on it are miffed.

    Can any of you friendly Metro lovers help me?

    Thanks,
    Ryan
  • Hi there.
    Burnt smell: catalyst blocked or
    clutch slipping, if you had a tach you would immediately know for sure....,
    lack of compression....
    Blocked fuel filter,
    blocked air filter,
    blocked muffler........you got me stomped. When you find our please let us know.
    Thanks.
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    When I first bought and began working on my 3 cylinder Metro, I soon discovered that this engine requires far more tension on the alternator belt than any other car I have ever worked on (and I''m a professional mechanic). It apparently is the result of the unusually high efficiency of this alternator design; which enables it to produce power at a lower engine speed than most alternators, combined with the short distance between pulleys on this engine. Because the belt tension has to be so unusually high, I found that many inexpensive (and some major) brands of fan belts will stretch under this type of service, and thus cannot maintain the tension at which they were originally adjusted. The one brand of fan belt that has proven to be durable is Goodyear. And that is now the only brand of fan belt I will use on a 3 cylinder Metro engine.

    You may need to use a long bar or block of wood to pull as a lever against the alternator; in order to properly tension the belt. Be careful to not allow any metal object to touch the live alternator terminal where the power cable attaches. Tighten the belt to the point where it feels like a tightly strung rope, which will not move down when you try to press down on the midpoint of its longest unsupported span. It should feel much tighter than any other fan belt you have adjusted.

    The faster you drive, the more resistance the alternator will produce against being turned by the belt. I believe the burning smell you noticed was created when the belt began slipping on the alternator pulley.

    It is normal for any new fan belt (including a Goodyear) to stretch some during the first few miles it is used. So you will need to recheck and adjust the belt tension once or twice during the first week. After that; it should remain stable.

    The one other factor that could hamper your car's performance (and possibly cause burning smells) is ignition timing that has been set too far retarded. Sometimes during an emission inspection; if the car's emissions are too high, the mechanic may retard the timing in order to make it pass. Retarding timing beyond factory specifications is a cheap way to make a car pass smog; but it has major consequences of causing excessive heat, reducing power, and potentially damaging the engine; particularly at high speeds.This can also happen if the mechanic does not follow the proper procedure that is required in order to check the timing on this engine. Sometimes it is necessary to first disconnect an electrical connector at the distributor, before checking the timing. The procedure should be listed on the emission information label attached to the underside of the hood.

    I hope this helps!!!
    Joel
  • My friend and I tightened it in May to the point it was pretty taut, but right now you can take an index finger, push the belt, and there is about a centimeter or so of play. Having too tight of a belt...wouldn't that damage the alternator sooner than later?

    Having that much tension on a belt, is it more prone to wearing sooner?

    I do not think the ignition timing has been altered/tampered with at all. I am the third owner. The first owner bought it new in Ohio, and the second and current owner (me) live in Michigan (I know, bad for the "A" frame, but thankfully it's not rusting).

    Do you think the distributor, coil, or anything else could be a possbility in your professional opinion?

    My friend and I did replace the drivebelt back in February because it was squealing pretty bad. Two days after winter semester ended (first week of May), the problem began. My question still is this: Why would replacing the battery solve the problem for two-and-a-half months??
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    Thank you for following up! The new battery probably had more of a surface charge on it than the old one; which enabled it to supply additional power to the ignition system when the alternator belt began slipping. So that gave the car a stronger spark; until the belt started slipping more. At that point, the battery was no longer able to make up for the deficit in what the alternator was producing, so the spark became weak again; and that's when the car lost power.

    I have run the alternator belt on my Metro at proper (very, very tight) tension for over 271,000 miles. I am still using the first Goodyear belt I bought for that car; which was installed at least 120,000 miles ago. I am also still using the second alternator which has been on that car; that I also installed about 120,000 miles ago (and I bought it used, at a wrecking yard). I finally replaced the original water pump a few months ago. It had over 265,000 miles on it, and the bearings were still tight. The reason I replaced it was because coolant began seeping through one of the seals. I think this should answer your concerns about the likelihood that the tension required to prevent belt slippage will create premature wear on belts, water pump, or alternator!!!

    Like yourself; when I first encountered a Metro, I had been used to the fan belts on older American vehicles. The belt on my 1971 Dodge runs just fine with about
    2 1/2cm of deflection in the middle of its run. But Japanese alternators are a very different animal.When their field winding is energized, they create far more resistance to being turned by the belt than do American alternators; and their bearings are engineered to carry the additional load. Metros are not the only alternator that needs a tight belt. Toyota alternators also do the same thing. And I have had to become used to tightening these belts to tensions that I wouldn't dare to have done to an American alternator. But that is absolutely necessary in those cars; and it doesn't hurt a thing when it is done there. On the contrary; if you don't tighten them to those levels; then the belts start to slip and burn.

    It sounds like the belt in your Metro is stretching, if it has loosened again. As I said, I haven't seen any brand except Goodyear and original equipment Japanese belts which will hold up in this service. The American belt manufacturers are still using materials intended for turning American alternators; and they just don't cut it in a Japanese engine.

    I also need to point out that the Metro, along with many other Japanese cars, now use a different design belt than the old "V-belts" that were on American cars. The earlier Metros use a belt with a series of parallel ribs running lengthwise along the inside face. These ribs fit into grooves on the inside face of the pulley. Your year Metro has now gone to a wider serpentine belt; IF YOU ARE USING A BELT INTENDED FOR AN EARLIER YEAR METRO, IT WILL BE THE RIGHT LENGTH, BUT IT WILL BE TOO NARROW; AND THAT COULD CAUSE IT TO SLIP AND WEAR RAPIDLY.

    I looked up the proper alternator belt for your car. AC Delco lists one which, since it is a serpentine style, probably would be sufficiently durable. The part # is 4K320, and the dimensions are 9/16" wide by 32 3/4" in length. Is your belt that wide?? I would recommend buying an AC Delco belt at a local parts store.

    I do not think the distributor, coil, or anything else warrants consideration in this situation. For now, try using the correct belt and tighten it properly. Once you have the right belt, at the proper tension, I expect you'll see the problem is gone.

    Joel
  • Joel,

    I'm glad someone is finally listening when I repeatedly state the battery solved the problem for awhile. When I told many others about the battery (it is a good clue, isn't it?) situation, none of them took it seriously into consideration. Most stated it's the fact I have not had a muffler on my car for almost a year and that there are cracks in the exhaust between the manifold and converter. I know I have to replace this because I should have some backpressure. However, many told me right away I should do a compression test and check for "burned exhaust valves."

    Here is some additional information (relevant) that I failed to include in my last two messges:

    1. When my friend and I replaced the squealing belt in February, we noticed the belt did not look terribly worn. It started squealing in October of 2007 when leaving for school (it also started to get colder). It would go away after a few blocks. My friend sprayed some belt dressing on it because it didn't look that bad. The belt dressing didn't help. I decided to live with it for a few months. When it squealed, the lights obviously dimmed a little. I replaced it in February because it got so bad, it wouldn't go away after a few blocks. So, when we took the belt off, we went to AutoZone and I bought the cheapest belt: A $5 Valuecraft. That's the same belt that's on it today.

    When we took the old belt off, I immediately noticed all the pulleys were VERY shiny. Nonetheless, we put the cheap Valuecraft on.

    When the belt started squealing again the next morning, we took the belt off. The pulleys spun freely (I haven't heard of pulley problems in Metros). We decided to take a wire brush and dull the glaze on the pulleys a little as we both were clueless at this point. The belt was tightened even more, and then the squealing went away. If I remember right, I expressed concern about the belt being too tight, as that may put stress on the pulleys and alternator. I think a few days later it was loosened VERY slightly. The squealing still didn't come back. However, my friend stated the Valuecraft is a cheap belt and he did recommend a few times I should get a better quality belt. As I stated, the Valuecraft is still on there.

    Today (Sept. 23) I was under the hood and looked at the alternator pulley. It is very shiny/glazed. When I had the battery shop check the battery and alternator while the car was idling last month, the service guy noticed the glazed pulleys as well and made a statement about it. After revving the engine a few times, he said the alternator is charging the battery properly and the battery is fine.

    Do these revelations make you even more confident the belt is at fault?

    A couple final questions on this issue before I addreess the belt in November (or possibly late October) when I go home:

    1. How long did the distributor and coil last on your Metro with 271K? What are some signs to indicate it's bad? The coil? Is there a common problem with these on Metros? I know the obvious: Engine misses throughout the driving range; starting problems.

    2. Are EGR valves a problem on these cars? What are signs that show it's going bad (besides loss of power)? Is yours original? How do you check to see if its functioning properly?

    3. Did you have any burned valves on your Metro? I've heard this is common. I now wonder about this due to my exhaust woes. In the last month, I've taken one 80-mile round trip on the highway and two 200-mile round trips on the highway at 55mph. Three people told me this is not what I should be doing.

    Finally (I'm sure you're getting tired of reading by now), as I think I mentioned in the first message, I am very attentive to scheduled maintenance. Maybe too attentive. I don't travel 3,000 in three months. I travel about 1,500. In the winter, I travel about 1,000 miles in three months. With this Metro, I am in the practice of changing my oil every two-and-a-half months regardless of how many miles driven. I use Valvoline conventional 5W-30. Yearly, I also change the plugs, air filter, coolant, and washer fluid (just kidding).

    What are you doing to your car that has resulted in almost 300,000 miles? I can't get over that. You've got the 1.0. My last Metro (a '96 sedan with an automatic) was falling apart at 140,000).

    I know I've asked a lot, but I have researched this as much as I can and it's frustrating. Reading the Chilton's manual doesn't help with this troubleshooting. I appreciate your help and patience. If you can send me an e-mail so I have your e-mail address, I'll also let you know in a month or so what happens after the belt is replaced and tightened: vtec1980@yahoo.com

    Thank you,
    Ryan
  • you can get it at schucks or auto zone for between 5 and 10 dollars, and is simple to replace. just be sure to use the proper size screwdriver, the screws become tight and strip very easily.(both have web sites if you dont have one locally)
  • i have a 2000 metro 1.0L 5 speed 2 door hatchback.it runs really good have not had any major problems with it although it doesnt pull hills very well at 238,000 miles on the car
  • I am thinking about buying a 2000 Metro 5 spd with about 140,000 miles. Asking price is 1,800. First of all, regardless of price, what do you think of the car? Second, what price do you think is fair?
  • Good car, heavier than the earlier ones, more aerodynamic.
    If it's not rusted price is okay, you can do worse and you can do better.
    Prices are going up.
    Judging a car strictly on a price is not the way to go.
  • Agreed, judging on price alone not way to go. What I am really wondering is should I buy a 9 year Metro with 140 thousand miles or try to get a newer/lower milleage car like a Ford Focus?
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    The decision about the wisdom of buying a 2000 Metro with 140K on it is largely dependent on the condition of that individual car.

    In general, I consider the Metro to be the best engineered vehicle I've ever owned or worked on (I am a mechanic with 27 years of experience). I have a 1990 5 speed, with the 1.0 liter 3 cylinder engine; which I bought from the original owner in 1992, when it had 58,000 miles on it. The car now has over 271,000 miles on it; the original engine still runs strongly (and has never needed any internal repairs; except for a front oil seal replacement and routine timing belt changes). The car still has the original shocks, clutch, starter, engine, transmission, and rear brakes. It also gets outrageously good fuel economy. So you can see why I love it.

    But Metros are very light vehicles, and because of the small, highly tuned engine; they are quite vulnerable to being damaged by neglect, abuse, or improper maintenance. Many Metros with 140K on the clock would be on their last legs; because owners of cheap cars often tend to skimp on maintenance. However, the car you're considering has averaged 17,500 miles per year; which means it has gotten a fair amount of freeway driving. This is the best environment for a car to be operated in, and it also suggests that the car may have been better maintained than most. A well maintained Metro should be able to reach 200,000 miles or more.

    The 2000 Metro was available with either a 1.0 liter 3 cylinder engine; or a 1.3 liter 4 cylinder engine. The 1.0 liter 3 cylinder engine is more economical; but the 1.3 liter 4 cylinder engine has more power, and doesn't have to work quite as hard. Both engines have a very similar design. The 2000 Metros have more complex electronics than my 1990; and are not quite as reliable as the earlier ones. But the difference is not great enough to change my opinion about the car's desirability.

    Before deciding about buying a car of that sort, I would strongly suggest having it inspected and evaluated by either an AAA diagnostic center, or a qualified mechanic. They should be able to advise you about the remaining life expectancy of the car, and any maintenance or repairs which are needed at this time, and in the near future. One test that would be very important in this inspection is having the cylinder compression checked. The 3 cylinder Metro should have a compression pressure of 190-195 psi. Anything lower than 170 psi in any cylinder would be unacceptable (unless you are willing to buy a new motor). I don't know the compression spec for the 4 cylinder engine; but it is not something to guess about. It should be looked up in a manual.

    Whatever car you buy; I would strongly recommend that you find out from the previous owner what brand and viscosity of motor oil they have been using; and I would religiously stay with that same particular brand and weight whenever you have the car serviced. That can make a huge difference in the life of the engine.

    The $1,800 asking price is very reasonable; assuming the car is in good condition. I would not quibble about that price.

    If you decide to get a different model, I would strongly recommend considering a Toyota Yaris or Corolla; instead of a Ford Focus. You will find a major difference in reliability between those cars.

    I hope this helps you with your decision!!!
    Joel
  • The 1.3 and 1.0 liter Metros have TBI (throttle body injection) fuel systems. If you remove the air filter, the TBI is immediately below it. I also had a '96 Metro 1.3 liter. How many miles are on your Metro? You're not having problems, are you?

    The "dash fading" (as well as sagging headliners) is common with these vehicles. I purchased my '96 at 110K and about three-quarters of the dash was faded. Pretty ugly, but when you own the cheapest car on the road, it is unsensible to "fix" the dash fade. I don't know of any products you can purchase that will "fix" it.
  • Damn, $1800? I bought my '98 Metro last year with 70,000 miles for $2,000. It's a 5-speed mated with a 1.0.
  • d0nt00d0nt00 Posts: 2
    Clogged catalytic converter fixed mine. Used alot of oil before engine was rebuilted, but it never smoked. I'm guessing all that oil clogged the converter?
  • ayejayayejay Posts: 4
    God Bless you guys,

    Hi, I am now in the family of Metro owners. But not yet happy as I am believing I will be. Bought 1998 Chevy Metro 3 cyl 5 sp w/ 83K miles. Zippy little thing and in nice shape by not happy with gas mileage. Only getting 32 mpg city. Shouldn't I be looking more toward 50 mpg in town or is that all hype? What is best way to improve mileage?
    What about adding computer chip to increase HP and gas mileage good or bad idea?

    AJ
  • Change for new:
    Oil, brake fluids, distributor cap, plugs and wires.
    Check: EGR valve, air filter,fuel filter, tire pressure and wheel bearings.Don't drive with your foot slightly on the brake pedal, check to see that the brakes are clear also. Every little bit helps.

    It is NOT a sport car, don't drive it as if it was one. Usually the driver behind the steering wheel needs some adjustment.
    keep it clean, keep only the essentials in the trunk. If you are a travelling salesman with brick samples...I suggest that you change jobs.
    Have fun with your metropolitan car.
  • c29160c29160 Posts: 5
    50 mpg in town is hype, that is best case on the highway. the best I have managed to get out of my 98 is 41 on the freeway, and I have completely rebuilt the motor and drive train.new clutch drive axels everything. the best thing for you to do is check your compression it should be over 180lbs per cylinder. check your vacuum it should be a steady 20-21 lbs. check your egr valve, when these valves malfunction it burns exhaust valves which causes poor fuel economy. low compression or low or fluctuating vacuum could mean you need new rings or you have a burnt valve. if you havent changed your oil yet change it and make sure you use 5w-30 only, use about 2.5 to 2.75 quarts of oil and fill the rest to the fill line with slick 50 it can help boost compression.if milage improves put new rings in it
  • zaken1zaken1 Posts: 556
    Welcome to the club!!!

    Gas mileage will vary greatly, depending on the ambient air temperature, the length of your trips, the mechanical condition and state of tune of the engine, and the restraint with which you drive. That said; my experience has been that 32 mpg city is at the very low end of the expected range. But I would not expect your car to get 50 mpg in city driving under any condition; particularly when using today's fuel blends. My 1990 5 speed got 48 mpg in city when tuned perfectly, and got 55 mpg highway. The newer Metros will not do quite that well. If your city driving consists of trips that are mostly shorter than 5 miles; you will be lucky to ever get over 40 mpg. And in the winter, it will probably be even worse.

    I will give you one piece of advice; which is distilled from 16 years of professional experience with these cars. ANY modifications which increase HP will REDUCE your gas mileage. You can have mileage or power; but not both at the same time.

    The so called "computer chips" being sold for Metros are not really computer chips. They do not go into the computer, like a real chip does. These items are only connected to the inlet air temperature sensor. All they can do is to fool the computer into thinking that the incoming air is colder than it really is; so the computer will then richen up the mixture. But the last thing that a Metro needs is a richer fuel mixture. They are already set too rich, in order to make them less sensitive to poor fuel or going out of tune. And that is very likely why your car only gets 32 mpg in the city. If you want to spend $400-600 on dyno tuning; a qualified shop might be able to tweak the computer to optimize your air/fuel mixture; but that is by no means a certainty. Metros are the most sensitive engine I have EVER seen; and they are designed so that many engine controls have overlapping effects. Because of this design; just about any modification that is made to improve these engines under a certain condition will make it run worse in some other area. So my advice is to NOT MODIFY IT AT ALL!!!

    What you can do to improve the mileage is to first make sure the car is absolutely stock, and then tune it properly. The most critical area is the exhaust system. The catalytic converter and all the stock mufflers must be present, and must all be of the original design, and there can be no leaks anywhere in the system. Any muffler which has been changed, removed, or is at all different than the stock part can be expected to ruin the mileage. This goes for both aftermarket performance parts and stock type parts made by a manufacturer other than Chevy. The pipe diameter must also not be altered. I cannot stress this strongly enough!!!

    Once you are sure the exhaust system is in perfect, stock condition; check to see that the original design air cleaner housing and all the rubber connecting ducts are still there. Remove and inspect the air filter element. You should be able to see enough sunlight pass through the element, so that the shadow of your hand should be easily visible when you place it over the filter. If you can't see that shadow, then replace the air filter element.

    At the mileage now on the car, I would also replace the timing belt.

    In my experience, NGK spark plugs have never worked well in that engine. Because of their popularity, that is very likely the brand that is now in the car. I would only use either Autolite #AP63, or Bosch Fusion #4506. If you want to go custom, you can use an Autolite #AP5503 or Champion truck plug #4430. Both of these plugs are improved designs; which are still similar in heat range to the AP63, but these plugs take a 5/8" socket, while the stock plug takes a 13/16" socket. Be sure to set the plug gap to.044" (but do not try to gap the Bosch Fusion plug) and apply a light coating of anti seize thread lubricant to the plug threads before installation.

    Check the ignition timing with a timing light; following the procedure printed on the emission label that is on the underside of the hood.

    If you do all that, come back and post how you now feel about the car. I'll give you information about correcting the fuel mixture at that time.

    IMHO, I would not use Slick 50 in an engine that is in good mechanical condition. There is a different additive called Tufoil which does not contain a carrier oil; and thus is not likely to create problems due to chemical incompatibility with your existing oil. I've used it in my Metro for over 200,000 miles; and the engine still shows no loss of compression or power.

    Joel
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