The inlet manifold on this 2006 Fiat Panda was not designed to be heated, but luckily the experience didn’t consign the unit to the scrapheap. The Fiat had been brought in due to rough running and, when listening to the note from the engine, we suspected this was due to an air leak. A quick spray around the manifold with a solvent while the engine was running confirmed this by raising the revs slightly.
When we removed the plastic manifold, it was discovered that the engine had overheated at some stage and this had resulted in the manifold softening and the rubber gaskets hardening. As the manifold is not difficult to remove and refit, we decided to try fitting new gaskets to see if they would create a good enough seal. Fortunately, this rectified the running problems. As a precaution we checked the cooling system, but with no faults present we returned the vehicle to its owner with a note to watch the temperature gauge more closely.
The plastic manifold had sustained heat damage on the joining face to the cylinderhead.