No Motronic codes on 164 base with A/T - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums

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Old 01-20-2012, 03:57 PM
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No Motronic codes on 164 base with A/T

In the process of troubleshooting a "surging" problem, I set out to check the codes on my 1991 164 b automatic. I tried about 10 times but pressing the button on the steering column produces nothing. Fred D's instructions say I should see a "slow flash"...but I get zilch.

The test button shows that the CEL is operational -- that far-left light illuminates just fine. Plus I saw it the other day when the problem manifested itself.

Thinking there might be a problem with the 20-year-old pushbutton, I unpluged it and attempted to summon the codes by shorting the two available wires for 2.5 to 5 seconds. Again, negative function -- no slow blink or 4-4-4-4.

Any suggestions?

Also, any suggestions on the base problem would also be welcome. It's weird: occasionally the engine will race without application of the accelerator. It does this at random...except...I noted that if I press down on the intake plenum, I can re-create the problem. Literally: if I lean again the "Alfa Romeo" wording on the plenum, the engine revs to 1500 or so.

After poking and prodding all wires (spark-type included) and hoses in the vicinity, I'm thinking air leak. But prior to dissembling the whole air intake system, I'd really like to know if any codes have been thrown. (There must have been since the CEL came on.)

I must also note that the this problem has been intermittent. It did not pop up or interfere last Friday when the car passed emissions testing with its usual flying colors.

Any thoughts on the base problem or missing codes are welcome.
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- Eric H., Marietta, GA, USA

Currently running: 1976 Spider "Baccione" (sold - leaves the nest Nov. 4) - 2014 Ford Focus ST - 1994 164 LS - 1992 164 L (Canadian edition - currently listed on eBay)

Past Alfas: a 105, two 116's, two 162's, and two 164's.
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Old 01-20-2012, 04:16 PM
Alfisto Steve's Avatar
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http://www.digest.net/alfa/FAQ/164/diag.htm
Procedure A
T1 = Pressure duration between 2.5 and 5 seconds.

Press pushbutton for duration Tl after the ignition key has been turned to "run" position: the CHECK ENGINE warning lamp performs a long flashing (about 2.5 seconds).

Following this flashing, series of short flashings is performed (about 0.5 seconds); record the number of flashings since this is the first digit of the error code (consisting of four digits) which will allow identification of the malfunction. Each series of short flashings is separated by a long flashing.

By pressing again the pushbutton for a period Tl will display the second digit of the error code, and so on until all the five defects that can be stored in the control unit memory are displayed. If the pushbutton is not pressed, the systemwill repeat the last sequence of flashings, thus allowing to check the recorded code.

When all malfunctions have been displayed, the warning lamp performs a series of long flashings.

If the code of the first series of flashings is 4-4-4-4, that means the control unit has stored no errors.

Pressing the pushbutton for duration T2, the warning lamp will repeat the flashings from the beginning.
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Ciao, Alfisto Steve
Virginia Beach, VA
AROC 164 Tech Advisor
http://www.aroc-usa.org/
My Maintenance Sticky: http://www.alfabb.com/bb/forums/164-...ance-tips.html

Daily drivers: USA models - 91 164L w/AT "Black Beauty I" ALFA4ME; 91 164S Black Beauty II ALFALFA

SOLD MY91 "Bianco" 164B 5-speed [My Originale], ALFISTO Movin On!
Also gone are Old Blue 91 164L, Rosso1 93 164L, Rosso2 91 164S; QS2 164L

Daughter's current ride: Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus

Current Car hauler and Parts chaser : 2000 Dodge Ram PU 5.2L V-8

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"

Last edited by Alfisto Steve; 01-20-2012 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 01-20-2012, 04:45 PM
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I tried those very instructions about 10 times. No results. No long flashing.

This was John Hertzman's car. It currently has about 64K miles on it and shows no signs of 'tinkering'.
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- Eric H., Marietta, GA, USA

Currently running: 1976 Spider "Baccione" (sold - leaves the nest Nov. 4) - 2014 Ford Focus ST - 1994 164 LS - 1992 164 L (Canadian edition - currently listed on eBay)

Past Alfas: a 105, two 116's, two 162's, and two 164's.
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Old 01-20-2012, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eric_h View Post
I tried those very instructions about 10 times. No results. No long flashing.

This was John Hertzman's car. It currently has about 64K miles on it and shows no signs of 'tinkering'.
Your are pushing the square button in lower steering column cover?

I would test button with a meter to see that contacts close when button pushed and that wires have good connection to it.

As for pushing on intake and making idle change you may have a cracked rubber coupling tube for one or more chrome intake tubes. Intake plenum shold not really move if bolted to rear valve cover. 164B if earlier model should have it bolted directly to rear valve cover. If later model usually a 164L it was mounted on three rubber mounts and those do break so it can then move and those rubber couplings could move.
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Ciao, Alfisto Steve
Virginia Beach, VA
AROC 164 Tech Advisor
http://www.aroc-usa.org/
My Maintenance Sticky: http://www.alfabb.com/bb/forums/164-...ance-tips.html

Daily drivers: USA models - 91 164L w/AT "Black Beauty I" ALFA4ME; 91 164S Black Beauty II ALFALFA

SOLD MY91 "Bianco" 164B 5-speed [My Originale], ALFISTO Movin On!
Also gone are Old Blue 91 164L, Rosso1 93 164L, Rosso2 91 164S; QS2 164L

Daughter's current ride: Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus

Current Car hauler and Parts chaser : 2000 Dodge Ram PU 5.2L V-8

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"

Last edited by Alfisto Steve; 01-20-2012 at 04:58 PM.
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Old 01-20-2012, 05:04 PM
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I suspected the switch first as it hasn't seen much use in the past 20 years. I disconnected it and tried to call the codes by shorting the two wires for 2.5 to 5 seconds. No dice.

I'm wondering is maybe the wiring is damaged further down the line. What a PITA that will be if that is the case!
__________________
- Eric H., Marietta, GA, USA

Currently running: 1976 Spider "Baccione" (sold - leaves the nest Nov. 4) - 2014 Ford Focus ST - 1994 164 LS - 1992 164 L (Canadian edition - currently listed on eBay)

Past Alfas: a 105, two 116's, two 162's, and two 164's.
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Old 01-21-2012, 12:27 AM
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another way to pull motronic codes

Quote:
Originally Posted by eric_h View Post
I suspected the switch first as it hasn't seen much use in the past 20 years. I disconnected it and tried to call the codes by shorting the two wires for 2.5 to 5 seconds. No dice.

I'm wondering is maybe the wiring is damaged further down the line. What a PITA that will be if that is the case!
Locate the T1 3-wire test connector in passenger foot wheel behind carpet under glove box and foot wheel light area. Third wire is white-red in that T1 connector

Now jumper light blue-white wire to black wire for the same T1 time/seconds and see if check engine light will now flash codes.

T1 = Pressure duration between 2.5 and 5 seconds. Press pushbutton for duration Tl after the ignition key has been turned to "run" position: the CHECK ENGINE warning lamp performs a long flashing (about 2.5 seconds).
__________________
Ciao, Alfisto Steve
Virginia Beach, VA
AROC 164 Tech Advisor
http://www.aroc-usa.org/
My Maintenance Sticky: http://www.alfabb.com/bb/forums/164-...ance-tips.html

Daily drivers: USA models - 91 164L w/AT "Black Beauty I" ALFA4ME; 91 164S Black Beauty II ALFALFA

SOLD MY91 "Bianco" 164B 5-speed [My Originale], ALFISTO Movin On!
Also gone are Old Blue 91 164L, Rosso1 93 164L, Rosso2 91 164S; QS2 164L

Daughter's current ride: Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus

Current Car hauler and Parts chaser : 2000 Dodge Ram PU 5.2L V-8

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"

Last edited by Alfisto Steve; 01-21-2012 at 12:31 AM.
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Old 01-21-2012, 09:04 AM
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The info about hidden connector is very good to know. Thank you!

Sadly, bridging those wires didn't bring any flashing.

I put a meter on the square steering column switch and it checks out OK.

I am really at a loss as to the codes. The check engine light definitely works. It lights with the TEST button and it lit briefly on Thursday when the "surge" was happening.

Do you think disconnecting the battery for a time might help? Or should I go further into tracing the wiring toward the ECU?

Curiosity only: what is red/white for on the service connector? Near the service connector there is another connector not hooked up, does it serve another diagnostic purpose?
__________________
- Eric H., Marietta, GA, USA

Currently running: 1976 Spider "Baccione" (sold - leaves the nest Nov. 4) - 2014 Ford Focus ST - 1994 164 LS - 1992 164 L (Canadian edition - currently listed on eBay)

Past Alfas: a 105, two 116's, two 162's, and two 164's.
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Old 01-21-2012, 09:23 AM
Alfisto Steve's Avatar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eric_h View Post
The info about hidden connector is very good to know. Thank you!

Sadly, bridging those wires didn't bring any flashing.

I put a meter on the square steering column switch and it checks out OK.

I am really at a loss as to the codes. The check engine light definitely works. It lights with the TEST button and it lit briefly on Thursday when the "surge" was happening.

Do you think disconnecting the battery for a time might help? Or should I go further into tracing the wiring toward the ECU?

Curiosity only: what is red/white for on the service connector? Near the service connector there is another connector not hooked up, does it serve another diagnostic purpose?

The red-white wire in T1 connector also goes to Engine ECU (computer) but it's exact mission/purpose is unknown to me. Craig in AU may know. He posted a ECU wiring diagram on here somewhere some time ago.

Disconnecting the battery will clear codes so go for it and see if CEL comes back on indicating a new/same code goes into memory.
__________________
Ciao, Alfisto Steve
Virginia Beach, VA
AROC 164 Tech Advisor
http://www.aroc-usa.org/
My Maintenance Sticky: http://www.alfabb.com/bb/forums/164-...ance-tips.html

Daily drivers: USA models - 91 164L w/AT "Black Beauty I" ALFA4ME; 91 164S Black Beauty II ALFALFA

SOLD MY91 "Bianco" 164B 5-speed [My Originale], ALFISTO Movin On!
Also gone are Old Blue 91 164L, Rosso1 93 164L, Rosso2 91 164S; QS2 164L

Daughter's current ride: Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus

Current Car hauler and Parts chaser : 2000 Dodge Ram PU 5.2L V-8

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"
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