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Old 06-06-2004, 03:37   #1 (permalink)
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ETC Problem?

After starting the car this morning I noticed that the Electronic Traction Control (ETC) light came on and stayed on. This isn't normal as the default startup mode for ETC is on (light remains off). 30 secs later I pull out of the driveway only to find the car runs as if it has lost a cylinder... I have checked the leads and the plugs and they appear to be fine.

I can only assume the two problems are related. The owners manual say that the ETC operates by two means - if travelling slowly it applies ABS to the rear wheels and it will reduce torque as needed. It also says that if the light comes on and stays on when the ETC is turned off the is a fault and to check with local Ford dealer.

Could an ETC fault really have such a dramatic effect on the engine?

Had cam and roller rockers fitted in last week but I can't see how these could related to this problem. She was going like a rocket last night and all I've done since is fit the necessary brackets for an engine shroud.
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Old 06-06-2004, 03:53   #2 (permalink)
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Re: ETC Problem?

I used to drive a 2001 XR8 without traction control, whenever I took it in for a service I used to get given a dealership XR8 that had traction control. The first time I got given it the traction control light was on and it ran like a piece of s@!t, apparently the traction control is connected to the engine management system and because a sensor was stuffed the thing was running very irregularly and chronically chewing fuel. Apparently traction control problems can cause serious internal engine trouble due to the way it alters the engine firing. If I were you I would rob a bank and take it to ford before it is well and truly stuffed coz apparently it is fairly common. Remember, whenever you go to a dealership get them to diagnose the problem first before they fix it, otherwise the bill might be an unexpected shock. Just hope that it's only a simple electrical problem.
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Old 06-07-2004, 16:44   #3 (permalink)
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Re: ETC Problem?

Turns out it was a partially disconnected number 8 fuel injector plug. Buggered if I know what this has to do with ETC - multipurpose fault indicator light? Had the privilege of Ford charging me $121 to find this out.

Having plugged it back in properly, cleared the codes etc she seems to run a little flatter now... doesn't quite sing like she did when the cam and RRs were fitted last week.

I did have to drive her about 45kms on 7 cylinders - would I have damaged one of the cats doing this?
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Old 06-07-2004, 20:15   #4 (permalink)
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Re: ETC Problem?

Your cats should be ok, if the injector was unplugged, no unburned fuel would have gone through the cat.
Give it time to learn again.
Ford bites hard at $121.
Spose they found a bunch of other things wrong with the car too.
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Old 06-07-2004, 22:08   #5 (permalink)
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Re: ETC Problem?

$121? At around $80 per hour, it took them 1.5 hours to find a faulty injector? What a joke. A good, experienced mechanic should have picked that up as one the first things to check (leads, plugs, injectors in that order) when diagnosing a drop in power or an 'off' cylinder. They must have got the apprentice to do it and charged you full value.

When my AU2 V8 dropped to 7 cylinders, it took the head mechanic at the local ford dealer approx 30 seconds to diagnose, and 15 minutes to fix (Busted No 7 lead). All at no charge.
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Old 06-07-2004, 23:26   #6 (permalink)
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Re: ETC Problem?

That was my point to them... the second time I've been to this dealer and the second time I've been ripped of (the first time they fixed something that wasn't broken and charged me for it - I did get my money back). The only reason I went back is because they were the only dealer that would look at the car that morning. I did speak with the guy who did the work... their 'process' was to test all the leads first, then the plugs etc - charged $85 to do this, then clear the codes - another $25 - add GST to this. What is a WDS test?

I'm still beating myself up for not finding this myself. Started at the plugs, then the leads, then the injectors but obviously missed number 8. An expensive lesson but a lesson learnt nonetheless - don't just look at your plugs and wiring, unplug them and plug them in again to be sure (and don't take your car to Metro).
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