Worn in­jec­tors a turn-off

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Ask Smithy -

My 2009 Kia Sorento 2.5-litre diesel auto in­ter­mit­tently looses power. When it hap­pens the en­gine still runs but will only do about 20km/h. The only way to cure it is to stop and switch off the en­gine and restart; ev­ery­thing is then OK. The car is still cov­ered by a five-year/ un­lim­ited kilo­me­tre war­ranty. The dealer re­placed the speed sen­sor but Kia said the car was out of war­ranty. Af­ter some ar­gu­ment they changed it un­der good­will but the prob­lem con­tin­ues. Now they say the fuel in­jec­tors are the prob­lem and need re­plac­ing (but not un­der war­ranty) as they say bad fuel is the cause. It seems this is a com­mon prob­lem with Soren­tos and can be caused by var­i­ous prob­lems. I have also read of a prob­lem with the lin­ing of the fuel tank break­ing down and clog­ging the in­jec­tors. What do you think? Should it be cov­ered by war­ranty (which ends in July)?

Brian Parker, email The car was go­ing into limphome mode when it was los­ing power, that’s why the speed was lim­ited. Turn­ing the en­gine off and restart­ing re­boots the com­puter. That sug­gests there was an elec­tronic prob­lem, so re­plac­ing the speed sen­sor would seem valid. I wouldn't have thought blocked in­jec­tors would cause the en­gine to go into limp-home mode. That’s a dif­fer­ent is­sue. Worn in­jec­tors are a reg­u­lar prob­lem on mod­ern com­mon-rail diesels, what­ever the brand, and re­plac­ing them is the way to go. Check your war­ranty doc­u­ments to see whether the in­jec­tors are in­cluded in the con­sum­ables list. If they are, they prob­a­bly won’t be cov­ered; if they aren't you might have a claim. At best Kia might come to the party with part of the cost of re­place­ment.

RAT­TLE FA­TIGUE

I bought a Toy­ota Prado Power vac­uum: A reader’s Kia Sorento is caus­ing headaches 3.0-litre GXL com­mon-rail turbo diesel in 2006. On tow­ing du­ties about a year later, the mo­tor be­gan to rat­tle. Over the next few years the rat­tle con­tin­ued and I re­ported it to the dealer on suc­ces­sive ser­vices. They could hear the rat­tle but thought it was nor­mal. In mid-Oc­to­ber, we had the sump taken off and the oil pipe checked and cleaned out. That was when the dealer found that the No. 1 fuel-in­jec­tor was leak­ing and the car needed four new in­jec­tors. They con­tacted Toy­ota to in­quire if this work could be done un­der war­ranty, as the prob­lem had been known since 2007, but it was de­clined. The cost of the work was $3336.25 and two weeks with­out a car, one week for Toy­ota to de­cline the ser­vice man­ager’s in­quiry and one week to have the work done. For the first time since 2007 the en­gine doesn't rat­tle. Is this just a co­in­ci­dence?

Barry and Dawn Gil­bert, email No, its not a co­in­ci­dence. The faulty in­jec­tor is likely to have been the cause of the rat­tle all along. If you still have the records of your pre­vi­ous re­ports to the deal­ers about it, you could pos­si­bly mount a case with Toy­ota for com­pen­sa­tion.

GIVE US A BRAKE

My wife’s 2011 Subaru Im­preza has done just 30,000km and we were told at the 30,000km ser­vice the front discs were warped and needed to be ma­chined. We were told this wasn’t un­der war­ranty. The car has only been driven on coun­try roads. Is this rea­son­able?

Mark, Trar­al­gon, email Brakes are not cov­ered by the war­ranty; they are con­sid­ered con­sum­ables that wear out as a mat­ter of course. That they need ma­chin­ing at such low kays is frus­trat­ing. Have you thought about ask­ing the dealer to show you the discs and jus­tify their opin­ion they ac­tu­ally need ma­chin­ing?

GRA­HAM SMITH gra­ham.smith@carsguide.com.au

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