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Mazda Protege Maintenance and Repair



  • Nevermind. I went to my dad's mechanic and it took them half an hour to remove it. They used a snake socket to remove the bracket screw, a crowbar to hold in place the bracket when removing and reinstalling the fuel filter, and the car lift to remove and replace the bottom hose.
  • - Thanks for the info - doesn't sound like anything I want to try on my own!
  • My 1999 Protege ES has been screeching on startup for several months now. I took it to a tuneup place and replaced the belts, however they said the problem was that the a/c compressor bearings were bad, so it wouldn't turn initially, thus the belt screeching. They quoted about $800 for the repair, including the a/c recharge. Does this make sense?
  • 70,000 miles, no recent problems with my 2000 Protege. I'm not really driving it much any more, it'll probably get parked in the garage for the winter months.
  • ...that the Mazda3 "problems" forums has half as many messages already as the equivalent Protege forum? You may want to keep those Proteges just a little while longer......... :P
  • This is my daughters car. 2000 LX w/1.6 and automatic. First trans. went out at 30k & was replaced by dealer under warranty. Two weeks ago, at abt 72k the car fails to shift out of 2nd gear. Dealer diagnoses problem to be failed transmission & $2700 to repair. Contacted selling dealer, who contacted Mazda & was informed that Mazda had already replaced one transmission & since the car was out of warranty, Mazda would not help. I personally called Mazda & was informed that once the Mazda area rep makes a decision, that the case is closed as far as any help from Mazda is concerned. So, the 2nd tranny failed w/i 42k miles. Personally, I find this as totally unacceptable. I purchased this car due to it proported reliability and low maintenance. Two transmissions going out in less than 72,000 miles is not my idea of reliability. So, buyers beware!
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Not that this helps, but it may help reassure others ... my MANUAL (5-speed) 2000 ES is at 82,300 miles and its transmission is doing just fine. I did replace the clutch, flywheel and throwout bearing under a TSB, but it was more of a "want" than a "need" thing since the dealership gave me a good deal. They said my old clutch looked fine when they replaced it. I plan to make my next car, a 2005 Mazda3 wagon, a 5-speed as well, in keeping with my KISS and KIFD (Keep It Fun to Drive) philosophy ...

  • I have a 2000 Protege ES 5 speed with about 33,000 miles. I bought the car as a demo with less than 3,000 miles on it just about 4 years ago and have been thrilled. It is been extremely reliable, the only maintenance needed has been regular oil changes. A couple of months ago, the Check Engine light started coming on occasionally. It seems to happen when I am in a hurry and start the car up and take off immediately. The car runs fine, aside from the light being on. We have found a temporary fix, disconnect the battery cable and reconnect and the problem goes away - for a while. Reading the messages, I see the MAF sensor mentioned - with a free fix? Does anyone have more details on that? My car has not been back to the dealer since the warranty expired and I am afraid they will see the current mileage and slap me with a major bill just to get all the scheduled maintenance done.
  • Have the dealer do no work you do not authorize, or find a good independent repair shop. I have never taken an out-of-warranty car to a dealer.
  • I have since had the transmission repaired. I have a written statement from the transmission shop that states: "Upon inspection, it was found that the Protege's transmission had too much endplay, resulting from a MISPLACED roller thrust (bearing). The 2-4 band was broken due to excessive endplay, resulting in the transmission failure." And on to say, "the transmission was doomed from the beginning because of the incorrect placing of the roller thrust (bearing) inside of the transmission."
     So, I'm taking this information back to the selling dealer (who replaced the first failed transmission at 29.8K with another defective unit that failed at 41K) and will see what response I get from Mazda. I bought this car in good faith based upon favorable reviews pertaining to safety and reliability. Two failed transmissions in 71K does not meet either criteria.
     I realize that in any mass production product, failures will occur. And if I was unlucky enough to get a defective replacement transmission also, I can get over that event if Mazda will accept their responsibility. More to come.........
  • Though my 1999 pro es 5 spd has been quite reliable, I have been suspicious of the auto tranny since the 1st tester I drove had excessive tranny slippage which caused overheating in a 2 mile drive.

    This is not a problem for me, since I dislike auto trannies, especially with 4 bangers.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    All you're doing when you disconnect and reconnect the battery cable is resetting the CEL system. Your computer is still storing codes for whatever is going wrong. You should have it checked out. My 2000 ES has 83,200 miles on it and I've never seen my CEL.

    The MAF sensor thing pretty much applied to the engines in the DX and LX models, and mostly 1999s. There was a recall for a coil-pack replacement on the 2000s though, about two years ago. Take yours into your dealer and ask him or her to check whether the recall has been performed according to your VIN.

  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    "My car has not been back to the dealer since the warranty expired and I am afraid they will see the current mileage and slap me with a major bill just to get all the scheduled maintenance done."

    Ahhh, but you HAVE had the scheduled maintenance done -- just not at the dealer -- RIGHT???

    I love reading people say they're having all kinds of problems with their cars, and then hearing them admit they've done absolutely NOTHING in the way of maintenance in thousands upon thousands of miles.

    Cars don't run forever on gas and washer fluid.

  • Please help. We just purchased this model for out daughter. I have always done my own oil changes, but this car stumps me! Where is the oil filter?? I have looked in the owners manual and looked at many of the discussions here and have gotten a general idea, but it is eluding me. I have purchased the new filter just can't find where to put it!! :-) I understand that the specific wrench needed probably will not be needed now since it is a used car, and hand tighting should do? Is this correct?
  • jrdwyerjrdwyer Posts: 168
    The oil filter for this engine is on the back side on the engine (facing the firewall) and high up,aka, right under the intake manifold.

    I always use an exact fitting filter (not the strap kind) wrench for removal of the oil filter as they always seem to get tighter over time and hand removal can be difficult, especially on this car.

    Best of luck. It's a great little car. I currently have 176K miles on my '95 LX with the original engine and clutch still working fine. I think this car may go 300K miles.
  • Thanks for the info Jrdwyer. My husband found it soon after I posted. My daughter loves the car. Hope we have as good as luck as you.
  • arabamarabam Posts: 11
    After the clicking and clunking was fixed (sway bar links + brake pads = $400 !) in mid-August the same kind of clicking/clunking started again two weeks ago ... took my '00 ES back to the dealership last weekend - they said there was loose clamp on the left brake - so they fixed it for free. Then last week, the same noise started one more time - this time even worse! - at lower speeds just before coming to a full stop the steering starts vibrating/shaking and you hear (and feel) this clicking and clunking from from front left side while braking.

    So this weekend's diagnostic is a bad left caliper which was closing on itself intermittently.
    Now the dealership says it is going to cost me another $250 to have a new left caliper installed on my Mazda. I said go ahead and do it but it bothers me that I was given different explanations at different times and now I'll end up spending altogether almost $700 to have this problem fixed. I realize that I will now brake pads etc. but my 00 Protege has only 54k and this is already my second set of new pads ???
    Hoping to keep the car for at least for another year (~12,000 miles), so, hopefully this investment will be worth it.??
  • kagedudekagedude Posts: 407
    Hi. I'm having a weird vibration on my 94 Protege DX 5spd 75K miles that started a week ago but could not find anything from searching previous posts. I noticed that when I start the car (cold or warm), the first 15 minutes going 50-60mph, the engine/steering wheel vibrates like either the engine is not burning gas fast enough or the tires are not balanced. After around 15 min, the engine/tires smoothes itself out. The engine was tuned up and new tires 2 mos ago. The rotor on the right side has a groove/line which was there before and the brake pads still are still okay. I'll start off with changing the fuel grade but if anyone can lead me else to look for. Thanks in advance.
  • kagedudekagedude Posts: 407
    My mechanic replaced the rotors, pads and calipers and this the fixed vibration problem. He found that my calipers were sticking causing the rotor/pad wear to be uneven.
  • Anyone venture a guess for the cause of the fuel system for bank 1 being too lean [PO171]? this is a '99 pro es with 37,000 miles.

    Also, my wife took the car to a Mazda dealer [somrthing I never do] while I was out of town. she was told that the power steering fluid needed to be flushed and replaced. According to my owners manual, the fluid need only level maintainence, not periodic replacement. Any experiences or thoughts?
  • I don't have the answer yet but had perhaps a similar experience with my 99 Protege ES with a bit over 60k mileage. My CEL went on a couple of weeks ago. First time since I bought the car new in late 98. No noticeable problems while driving. Took it to the shop. Spent $75 for a diagnosis (dealer would have charged over 90) but they were unable to uncover any problem. I plan to take it back in.
  • trxtrx Posts: 1
    Hello i just want some advice i have a 1998 mazda protege and once in a while the overdrive light on the dashboard starts flashing.The yellow check engine light also turns on when this happens with the overdrive light flashing,When this happens the transmission gets stuck in third gear after stopping the car at a red light,The overdrive light turns itself back on the yellow check engine light disappears and the transmission runs normal again.While the other week it will do the same thing again i am trying to figure out what it is because the fluid is fine and it has no leaks can somebody explain why does this happen . Thank you
  • The engine code suggesting a rare mixture in the bank 1 cylinders was from a leaking intake manifold gasket, not something I would suspect at <40k miles.
  • I have a 99 Protege ES with 65k mileage. Check engine late came on a couple of weeks ago. I spent $75 to get an engine diagnosis but they did not pin point the problem. They got the light to turn off somehow but it came back on almost immediately after I drove from the repair shop. I returned the car. They did a "smoke test" and told me that they detected a leak in the engine intake casket which was causing the CEL to ignite. Their stimate to replace the gasket and the smoke test was just under $500. I picked up the car again. In the meantime, the car seems to be running fine, although I sometimes feel some hesitation in the idle when the car is stopped at a traffic light.
  • How much did they charge. Did you have it done at the dealer.
  • My 99 ES with 65k mileage was diagnosed with the same problem. Did you end up getting this repair done. Estimate for repair: R&R intake manifold $342.70. Parts 44.98. This is in the Washington DC area and a Goodyear Gemini shop.
  • Yes, had it replaced for about that amount. I would have done it myself but was already charged for the diagnostic, so i paid. It seems there is a weak spot in the '99es gasketing. It was nothing I could hear, so probably it was a tiny leak. Of course, modern engines are finicky. A small leak could cause problems, at least with emissions levels.
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  • symptom: at a red light the car often 'coughs' and the rpms drop to bottom line on tach, then it adjusts back to normal idle, then repeats problem.
    I've replaced plugs and plug wires, recently replaced an oxyegn sensor in response to a check engine light, had 2 fuel system cleanings, have used a fuel system additive (Chevron Techron) a few times , and replaced a hose that had a tiny crack. It still does it?? What next o grand and wise Protege wizards near and far? Dealer says problem is NOT a symptom of fuel filter issues? Dealer says an injector may be bad. Does that symptom jive with a bad injector? thanks in advance for any insight etc.!!!!
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