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Mazda Protege Maintenance and Repair



  • wrenchingwrenching Posts: 1
    Hello, I have a 95 protoge that has this loud ticking sound. I'm pretty okay with mechanics but theres still alot I dont know. There's this sound coming from the right side of the motor. It sounds like a ticking sound, but only at start up can you really hear it and the higher the rpms go, the louder and more fast the ticking is. I'm pretty sure its a bearing from the A/C compressor but Im still not 100% sure. My A/C blows cold air and makes no excess sound when the AC is turned on. Its just when the rpms go up. I changed the belts, plugs, and cleaned most of the carbon, varnish etc... out of the engine. The CEL went off when I cleaned the engine now its back on. I replaced a vaccume hose which was cracked.
    Car runs fine except for that loud ticking sound when I accelerate. If it is the bearing, then is it easy to replace? Thanks, I hope someone can help :confuse:
  • badgergbadgerg Posts: 4
    Hey, I have a 99 protege Lx with 90k miles. I have put alot of cash into it trying show it off. I got undercar and interior neons, strobes, and my problem center, a nice sound system. I got jbls door speakers and pioneer 6x9's in the back with a pioneer deck. I was just about to put some 12' kicker L7's in the trunk when i noticed a problem with the cd player. When ever i run the defroster and play the cd player for over an hour with the windows, it seems to not read cd's when i want to change them till 2 hours later. The radio will work fine though and i dont have this problem unless my windows are down. I've had people tell me that the deck is getting to hot and that i should tape something over inside on the top of my deck. So i found the 99 protege deck recall and called the dealership. They said that the recall was already taken care of............... What should i do now? :confuse:
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    e.g., humidity. Moisture condensing on the laser.

    May I ask why you're running the defroster with the windows down?

    If your windows are that foggy that you need to run the defroster for an hour, try doing something that will make your windows defog a LOT quicker -- shut your windows and turn the a/c on while the defrost is on. Bingo, clear windows.

  • badgergbadgerg Posts: 4
    I hate virginia weather lol.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Where are you? I live in Richmond.

  • badgergbadgerg Posts: 4
    outside of richmond in the boonies. Mechanicsville to be exact. Whenever i drive my friend home was when i was havin problems. He lives in the part where the fog likes to roll in and theres always somethin tryin to get hit in the road.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I'm on the other side of town, in Midlothian -- but right now I'm halfway to your place, working in the Suntrust building downtown. I've owned two 1992 Protege LX's and a 2000 Protege ES in my past; now I'm driving a 2005 Mazda3S wagon. My wife drives a 2002 Protege5.

    So you might call us Mazda fanatics. :)

  • badgergbadgerg Posts: 4
    That's whats up ;)
  • zyxxyzzyxxyz Posts: 1
    I need some advice on what I might be able to do with my car.

    97 Mazda Protege LX. Ran it a little too long after last oil change and the oil got really low. Car shut itself down on the highway a few weeks ago. Now it won't start at all. Turns over, sounds great, but it won't ignite. Borrowed a friend's OBD reader (Autoxray ez-5000) and it reports no codes, it doesn't even know the Check Engine light is on.

    I know next to nothing about cars but this is my chance to learn. Unfortunately money is tight and even a tow to a garage is more than I want to spend until I have a better idea of where the problem might lie. Friends who know cars aren't even really sure. Could anyone offer some advice on what to look at please? Thank you.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    My wife has a 2000 Protege ES with about 66K miles on it. Last week the check engine light came on. I brought it to a shop to have it checked out and have an alignment & tire rotation done. The engine light was caused by a gasket that dried up and cracked. The said gasket was letting un-governed air into the engine. Part wasn't too bad, but there was some labor involved in replacing. Also I was shocked to find out that the front struts were leaking hydraulic fluid. I subsequently had them replaced. Thank the guy upstairs that she bought an extended warranty when she bought the car. A $1000 job turned into just $225 out of my pocket. Is this a common problem with these cars? What else can I expect as the miles on her car rack up?

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Ran it a little too long after last oil change and the oil got really low. Car shut itself down on the highway a few weeks ago.

    I'm not quite sure what you mean by that. Does the car leak oil? Oil shouldn't get "low" between oil changes; if anything it will get thin and dirty. How did the car "shut itself down"? Did the engine just quit? Or was there smoke? Hesitation? Noises? Are you connecting the shutting down with the low oil ... if so, was the oil just low, or completely out of the car? Need more INFO!

    If you don't know anything about cars, and your "friends who know cars" have looked under your hood and can't diagnose it, it's a little optimistic to think someone will be able to diagnose it here, sight unseen. I would have the car towed to a reputable mechanic and get an estimate. Otherwise, you may waste that tight money on a bunch of "whacks at it" from educated guesses here before the cause is finally stumbled upon. Have someone professional weed out the real problem.


    P.S. You must know something about cars to know where to hook up an OBD reader and check codes!
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    Bradd ...

    Your wife must have hit a very wide pothole, a curb or some other hazard in the road to make both front struts leak. As far as the gasket goes, I have no idea. Evidence:

    I just traded my 2000 Protege ES on a 2005 Mazda3. My 2000 Protege had 91,100 miles on it when I traded it. I only had one "problem" with the car; at 85,000 miles and some change, I had to replace a strut bushing (not the strut, mind you, but a rubber bushing under it). I paid the deductible on my extended warranty ($50) for it; it would've been about $170 for the job. That's the only problem I ever had with the car since buying it new in May 2000, and I attribute that problem to personal abuse -- there's an off-ramp near my house that is just a little more fun when I push the car hard into it ... :)

    The only time I've ever had a leaking strut was after I lost control of a car in the snow and hopped a curb at about 20 mph. The abrupt jolt to the strut compressed it too fast and made the seal pop out, causing the leak. Of course, the impact that caused it also bent the wheel the strut was attached to. In most cases, struts don't just start leaking on their own. Something has to cause it. I'd be even more suspect since it's both of them. My suspicions are leaning toward a little event that wife never told hubby about.

    A couple of people who still hang around here from time to time have had experiences similar to mine. Larry (protegextwo) owned two 2000 Protege ES's, one for himself and one for his wife. He had about 70K miles on them when he traded them for two Pontiac Vibes about a year ago. (We've become good friends and now get together at each other's homes for cookouts, even though he's in PA and I'm in VA). Larry had a transmission problem early on, well within his original warranty, that was covered under warranty. Otherwise, no problems with two of them in 70,000 miles. I'm pretty good friends with several other third-generation Protege owners; the consensus here is that they're very reliable cars.

    I think several other lurkers who own 1999 and 2000 Protege ES's (same engine) might come in here and tell you the same thing. I've never heard of one strut -- much less two -- going on these cars in only 66K miles, and the engines on these cars are fairly bulletproof. I've been posting here for five years and I've never heard of a dried-out, leaking gasket on a third-generation Protege. Sorry to hear about your problems, but to answer your question, no, these are not common problems with these cars.

  • jrdwyerjrdwyer Posts: 168
    I think that most struts should last between 100-150K miles before getting soft and needing replacement. The rear struts on my '95 Protege went 130K miles before starting to leak fluid. This was mostly caused by my towing a 400 ATV on a 4x 8 utility trailer which is NOT recommended by Mazda. We will see how long the Monroe replacement struts put up with this abuse. The car seems to be doing fine though.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    I've used Monroe shocks in the past, and have always had very good service from them. I even had a pair of Monroe Maxx-Air air-adjustable shocks on a Toyota back in the days when the accessories on my cars were worth more than the cars themselves.

  • mazdafunmazdafun Posts: 2,329
    No problems with the ones on my '99LX to date (the boots on the other hand, tend to fall apart at around 45k miles). The previous owner must've really abused them (going too fast over potholes, RR crossings etc.).
  • morganbmorganb Posts: 1
    i have a 98 protege DX and lately theres been a wierd sqeaking whenever i go over bumps and constantly on the freeway or when driving without stopping. also i just noticed this morning when i turn to the left theres a definite grinding sound from the right front wheel area...what could this be so when i take it into the shop i dont get taken advantage of???
  • sammazdasammazda Posts: 5
    I lost the remote of my 1997 Protege sometime back. I got a new one from an online auction but am not sure about programming it.
    Is there any help online regarding the same?
  • m98m98 Posts: 1
    I have a 1998 protege and any time I stop at red lights, stop signs or what have you my car starts to shake and rattle. Just wondering where I should start to look to fix the problem.
  • i jst bought a used Protege.. i believe 03 ... has a turbo on it... and had a cold air intake... mazda took that off becuz my engine light was always on... i think its cuz one of the sensors wasnt hooked up .. only the MAF would be hooked up with cold air.. the light was the only thing wrong.. didnt want to see it............... does anyone know of something to fix this were the light will go away... like a little chip or wire to make it think its there when its not.. or a way to totally turn it off...

    also... it has a turbo gauge and controller.. but there not hooked up... how do i do that...
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    any time I stop at red lights, stop signs or what have you my car starts to shake and rattle

    How many miles on the car? Is it a manual? If so, does it sound like your clutch or transmission are acting up?
  • indranilindranil Posts: 1
    Hello All,

    I have a 95 Mazda Protege (Automatic),which has driven 103K miles. I bought this car around 10 days ago. Recently, a yellow LED in the car has started glowing, on checking it in the "Mazda Manual", they say that " Electrical Circuitry problem". I was wondering if any of you guys have faced such a problem before.

    Any help/suggestion in this matter is highly appreciated.

  • jano3jano3 Posts: 1
    CEL stays on in my 2001 Protege LX @25K miles. OBD II code =P1170 AutoZone readout said "fuel air metering" What does this mean ? what should I do?. Anybody?
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    Thanks for the advice and analysis. My wife drives her car about 1.5 miles to and from the train station. The only thing I can think of is that she drives a little too fast going over the 8 speed bumps (twice a day) from our complex's driveway to where she parks. Even with the Protege's mildly sporty suspension, I feel it soak up the bumps when I drive over it with the car. It is entirely possible that she hit a pothole too (our roads here in NY are full of them). Even with the leaky struts, the car tracked straight. My car is an '01 Honda Prelude Type SH with a much firmer suspension that crashes over speed bumps and potholes (that I can't avoid). I'll have to be more careful. :surprise:

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • zerogeezerogee Posts: 1
    The driver's automatic window in my 95 Protege ES has failed, unfortunately in the down position. All of the other windows are functioning except the driver's window.

    I'm not too car savvy, but I did install new speakers about a year ago so I know how to get inside the inner door panel. I took a look and reseated the wires into the bottom of the switch panel, but unfortunately it wasn't that simple of a fix. All the other windows work

    So possible causes? Bad switch, bad relay, or busted motor? The MOST IMPORTANT thing in the short term: is there an easy way to manually "roll it up"? If the motor has failed, can a motor from a rear window be swapped in for the driver side window?
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    "If only one of the windows is inoperative, use a test light to check for power to its switches and motor. If you hear a humming sound when a window switch is pressed, the motor gearbox may have stripped gear teeth. The plastic gears in the window motor gearbox can strip after prolonged service. The motor will spin, but movement will not be transferred to the window. If the motor or the switches are found to be bad, they shold be replaced."

    Modern Automotive Technology / James E. Duffy. Tinley Park, IL : Goodheart-Willcox, c1998. p.679

    p.s. this is a wonderful book for getting to know your vehicle; the current edition is available from your local bookseller or check your local public library
  • davluvbbaldavluvbbal Posts: 3
    My 1999 mazda protege has 100,000 miles five speed. It has never had a problem until recently. It has started cutting out at about 2500 rpm. It only does it when it is hot and only at one spot on the foot feed. When I push the foot feed down more or let off it seems to stop. I have new plugs, wires, and filters and don't think they are a problem. The service engine light comes on, I had it checked and said the fuel mixture was to lean. but nothing else. Need some help.
  • Okay, this is my first time posting here on edmunds, so i want to thank you all for your help and apologize if this question has been answered before, i looked but did not see it. Here it is, i have a 95 protege, 5-speed. The car drives fine, but after shifting into second gear or above, as soon as i release the throttle, i get a grinding sound/vibration that can be felt throughout the car. This happens in gears 2-5 and only when i don't give it any gas. As soon as i step on the gas pedal, the noise stops, and as soon as i let up, it starts up again. It doesn't seem to affect the power or anything, but i'm getting pretty worried about it. The noise will continue even if i put the car in neutral. this makes me think its not a transmission problem, maybe something with the axle??? any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
  • sliu1sliu1 Posts: 1
    My Mazda Protege 2000 has 70,000 miles on it and the charge light comes on sometimes. This started occuring recently. I measured the charge voltage, and it is as high as 18 volt when the light is not ON and when it went down to 16 when the charge light started on. I went to a shop and tested the battery. It's OK but the alternator is bad. Then I bought a alternator and replaced it. About a week later, the light went on again. I brought the alternator back to the shop and they tested the alternator. The stator was bad so replaced it with another one. When I installed it, the light kept on. The voltage is 14.2 when engine is on and 13.2 when the engine is off. The shop tested it and the stator was bad again. They refunded my money and I bought one from another shop. The charge light now is occasionally on. & the belt is adjusted well. I don't what the heck is wrong with the car . Thanks in advance for advice.
  • bluem6ibluem6i Posts: 77
    I don't know if this will work for a 97 but here is a previous key programming post...

    1. Open driver's door
    2. Turn the key to on position (not ACC, but ON)
    3. Turn the key off and REMOVE it.
    4. Repeat the last 2 steps two times removing the key each time. Keep the key out.
    5. Press the light switch in the door (that turns the light off when the door closes) three times.
    6. There should be a chime similar to when your seatbelt is not fastened. (Mine did not chime but the door locks went down)
    7. Press the lock button on your remote two times
  • alanisalanis Posts: 1
    did you get a response for your 95 mazda protege vibration post. I too have a 95 mazda protege and it goes the same thing. At idle it runs fine but when in park and stopped (waiting on a light to turn green) it vibrates quite a lot. Temporaroy fix is to put it in neutral but I want a permanent fix. Please let me know if you have found a fix for the problem as I am barely starting to look into it. Bought this car used a month ago.

    O Alanis
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