The Discovery 2 pops a hose, but only a genuine replacement does the job
In all of my years of Land Rover ownership and driving, breakdowns – yes, I have suffered these numerous times over the past 20 years – never seem to happen close to home. There never is an ideal time for failures to happen, but hundreds of miles from home, towing a fully-laden trailer is usually when it happens.
One might argue that a long journey carrying a full load in the cabin and on the trailer is always going to highlight a weak spot in any Land Rover. I will never forget the turbocharger failure and subsequent runaway engine on a previous Discovery 2 when I was just a few miles out of Holyhead during a run down to Ashtree Land Rover with a load of Defender bulkheads.
An engine runaway is where the engine burns its own engine oil, supplied by the failed turbocharger, at maximum revs until it implodes. There is usually little chance of getting the engine stopped before it is ruined. Scary stuff indeed! I was fortunate on that occasion – I did mange to get it shut down and following an AA recovery down to Ashtree’s workshops (in Andover at that time) a replacement turbocharger had the D2 back on the road. Other incidents have usually centred around cooling system problems – coolant leaks, overheating, overworking due to the load and incline. On these trips, my AA membership has been invaluable and absolutely crucial. Of course, there has also been the odd flat tyre on the Land Rover and more than one trailer tyre blow-out.
Having extensively rebuilt and upgraded my current Discovery 2 I wasn’t expecting any problems on a recent trip down to Southampton docks, with a Land Rover 127 on the trailer, and indeed the truck performed valiantly throughout the long steady journey to the south coast.
After an overnight at a budget hotel, it was time to get up the road to collect a load at Richards Chassis. The engine had hardly reached full operating temperature when there was a strange soft pop from the engine bay, accompanied by an immediate drop in power and a plume of black smoke from the exhaust. Always an awful moment, and immediately the worst is expected. The power remained low but the smoke cleared if I kept the revs low and constant. I nursed the Discovery to a layby and then had a look under the bonnet.
To my relief, I could immediately see that the silicone hose had popped off the turbocharger. With tools in the back, there was no problem refitting the hose and re-tightening the hose clip. But I didn’t get far before it popped off again. This time I could see that the hose clip just wasn’t up to the job, as it wasn’t a genuine Jubilee clip. So where the heck was I going to find a new clip on a Sunday morning, far from home?
I got on the internet on my phone to see if there was a Halfords nearby when I remembered something, which I should have thought of immediately. I had collected a package of supplies for the workshop, which included a top-up of my stocks of genuine Jubilee hose clips. Exactly what I needed!
I soon had the package cut open and the correct size of hose clip in my hand – and had it fitted in a couple of minutes.
Thankfully there was no further incident on the trip and the Discovery performed faultlessly all the way home.
Another lesson learned – sometimes the cheap fixings that come with a component need to be substituted for quality.
Towing a trailer miles from home is when breakdowns happen
The Discovery 2 enjoys some downtime... the dog’s pleased