Fix of The Week – 01/18/19

Fix of the week


Fix of The Week

Every week we’re posting our favorite head-scratchers and interesting mechanical issues submitted by our Direct-Hit customers.

For a chance to have something you’ve worked on appear as a Fix of the Week, and win a cool little prize for your shop, all you have to do is post your unique fixes in Direct-Hit. Just look up the vehicle you’re working on, click on Post Fix at the top right, then tell us the problem and what you did to fix it.


This Week’s Winners

On this edition of Fix of The Week: a mystery whipping noise in a BMW, a faulty ECM in a Saab, and a crank no start in a Volkswagen.


2010 BMW 328i – OC Automotive Diagnostic

The customer complaint was hearing a “whipping” noise on acceleration. We test drove the car and heard noise from inside cabin area front dash. It sounded like a distinct rubber slapping against the vehicle and it increased with speed velocity. We performed the visual inspection underhood and checked all covers.

We raised the vehicle, removed the plastic undercover, and checked for anything possible that might cause noise: hoses, wires, cables. We checked the wheel well area for any loose wires or cables or hose lines that might contact the wheel when under drive load. On another test drive, the noise was still present so we opened the sunroof and the noise was instantly louder. We pulled over and inspected the sunroof and windshield. We found the plastic trim of the windshield was loose and causing the noise. After removing is, the noise was instantly gone.


2003 Saab 9-3 – Parrotta’s Auto Service

We’ll let this poster tell the story in his own words:

“P1682 code is really fun. Over the years I’ve found that the ECM is the main culprit. However, I have had some jobs where you have to do all three steps but starting with the ECM usually fixes it.”

“My former post on checking the wire in the plastic tray above the throttle turned out to be an isolated incident. I have found that if the throttle doesn’t make it go away then you must replace the ECM with a used one. These ECMs are really lousy so buy a few if you can find any.”

“Replace the ECM, add the module using tech2 then load the correct software into the module from EPSIPORTAL. The car will run without doing this but it will have random codes that you cannot fix.”


2005 Volkswagen Passat – Vee Dub Motors

Common issue: cranks; no start. we knew the car was perfect and that it had to be an electrical problem. This is specific to the 2.0 TDI on the 2004 and 2005 Passat. When other causes are eliminated or if the problem is intermittent, proceed locating the relay next to the engine control module. This is inside a sealed box in the plenum area under the driver side wiper. A special opening in the cover allows access to one of the screws holding the lid. There is probably an electrical test point to verify voltage, but we didn’t take the time to find it; we used the part substitution method instead.

We were going to replace relay 219 but found moisture inside this sealed box. We treated the relay spades with contact enhancer product and reinstalled the relay. The car started right up on next attempt. We removed moisture with a paper towel and resealed box.


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