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Old 12-25-2014, 12:41 AM   #1 (permalink)
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forneva is on a distinguished road
Default 2007 Forenza..horrible car

I've had the car for a year and a half, and I've had to replace the battery and the plugs, the brake lights, racked up a few dings/scratches from minor incidents, the transmitter for the gear (I'm car literate so excuse my terminology) is messed up and causes the car to still say reverse or park when it's in drive or third, I've had two leaks, and now I think my engine/brakes are ruined.

TL;DR for the next part: been having coolant leaks on either side of the car, getting by with water every day, engine might be ruined.

I had a leak on the passenger side of my car but I didn't know what it was, and I went to someone to have it fixed and they did something and I ended up with a busted pipe. I got that fixed and the leak stopped; now I have a leak on the driver side. It's a pinhole sized one on the coolant reservoir. I still needed to drive to work and to the repair shop and such so I've basically been driving, putting water and sometimes coolant in the reservoir for about two weeks. It was supposed to be 'fixed' a few days ago (the repair guy used epoxy to seal the hole) but I found myself on the side of the road waiting for the car to cool and stop smoking a few days later. So I just planned to get a new coolant reservoir and hold out until I get paid.

While all this is happening, my car is starting to shake when I turn into on and while I'm driving. I didn't think too much of it, but it kept getting worse...and now the real nightmare has begun: this morning, I turned on my car as normal, and after a few seconds it sputtered off. I was in a rush and had little options so I just started the car again, and attempted to drive it. 1) the engine started smoking 2) when I would start my car, (while in park) it would start revving super loudly as if I had my foot on the gas while stopped and would increase until I actually moved 3) very hard to depress the brake, and consequently my car was slow to stop (it was slow to accelerate too). I had to resort to using the emergency brake 4) the worst! every time I decelerated to 30 or below my engine would start making a loud popping noise.

I feel like maybe the guy I bought the car from never did any maintenance and now I'm stuck with it (it only had 72xxx miles on it), but I also have looked around online and read about how bad of a car this car is. Add in the bad gas mileage and I seriously regret not just buying a new car and paying a note (the forenza is paid off). Anyway, does anyone have a clue what's wrong? Could it be my brakes failing and my engine failing?
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Old 01-04-2015, 02:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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hi. this sounds worse than what you said in the pm you sent!! im going to just go paragraph by paragraph. well for one thing the stuff you replaced is considered wear and tear items. they get replaced from time to time on all cars. now, the problem with the gear shifter. that your going to need to fix eventually the car wont know what gear it needs to be in and wont move at all. i think the part is around $40. heres a thread about it and how to replace it yourself if you want to give it a try. it might take a few times to get right but it not a big deal.
ok, now i think we have to adress the sputtering. judging by your discription im still thinking its the IAC valve. as i said this controlls the idle of the car. now the problp;em with this is that you drive an 07. i dont have an 07 with the drive by wire so i cant help with how to check this one. unfortunatly theres a chance you may need to replace the throttle body. dont freak out, im going to have to have a look around and see if theres some other way you might be able to fix it.
when wasz the last time the car had a tune up? the poping could be due to a fouled spark plug or unburned gas. when it hits the open air it ignites and you get that POP. is the car showing any codes on the dashboard? or is there a flashing engine light? theres a chance the poping will right itself when the other problems are addressed. more on this in a sec lets get to the water leaks. these need to be fixed. every time the car overheats you run the risk of blowing up the engine or warping the head. both lead to an engine rebuild. over heating is bad lol.
ok now what id like to do is a quick list of stuff AND a touch of homework!! lol dont worry its all simple stuff. its going to help us figure out whats going on and what the heath of your engine might be. one thing is you need to fix the coolant leaks thats a big one. we need to make sure that no coolant is being lost inside the motor. next you need to fix the transmission range sensor this should make driving a thousand times easier. this is the part that tells the transmission what gear it needs to be in. now i need you to check a couple of things. one check the oil level. when you pull the dipstick is there any oil on it that looks milky? like coffee with milk in it? next look under the oil cap for the same. this can tell us if your loosing coolant inside the motor. now i need you to get a flashlight take off the cover over the spark plugs. now start on either the left or the right side. pull one spark plug cable at a time shine the flashlight into the hole. does it llook clean or is there oil inside? you should just see the spark plug. then replace the cable and go on to the next. were looking for a cause of the poping or backfire. if there oil covering the sparkplug it wont fire correctly and will cause a missfire. oil in the sparkplugs would be caused by a bad valve cover gasket, easy to fix also. check those things and let me know what you find and try to get the other two fixed as soon as you can. any questions just ask
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Old 02-18-2015, 12:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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7-even gives such good advice. I would not hate the car yet. It sounds like nobody ever gave it some love.

On my two Forenza's: the problem started with a broken airbox throat seal. The box was broken where the rubber seal meets the throttle body. If it's leaking dirt; the MAP and/or IAC valve will get gunked up. Causing the motor to run poorly. With the airbox off and being checked for breaks; clean both the MAP and IAC valve that's upstream of the carb that rides in the rubber inlet hose. There is special cleaner for the valve. Then do the idle learn procedure found elsewhere on this site. Check the emission hose there for collapse or leak. Some of the hoses just fell apart. Not really a big deal.

Several of us here have replaced the airbox/air filter, inlet assembly with much simpler aftermarket stuff. The added benefit is getting all that black box stuff out of the way.

Last edited by John M.; 02-18-2015 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 02-27-2015, 03:10 PM   #4 (permalink)
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thank you John M. I really appreciate that. I try my best to help when I can or to find an answer if I don't have one.
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