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Old 06-06-2019, 09:15 AM   #81
AstraFasta
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

Quote:
Originally Posted by maschinenbauer View Post
I still don't see how you could be having so many issues at such low mileage. This car is very simple. Was yours in a flood or something?
No flood lol. I think most of the issues were related to a half-hearted engineering effort to shoehorn a good Japanese automatic transmission. Other German cars we owned had similar maintenance requirements.

In any case, our Astra drives and looks like a 3 year old car.

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Old 06-15-2019, 10:46 PM   #82
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

Replaced valve cover, gasket, screws and oil cap today. Original valve cover was coated with a lot of oil inside. As I noted before, the spark plug ceramics were soaked in oil. The aluminum head required some cleaning of baked on oil near gasket contact areas. I added a dab of RTV at the two 90-degree corners going up towards the camshaft gear area. Cleaned all electrical contacts and applied dielectric grease. Removal, cleaning and install took less than an hour total.

I think the two coil pack screws were T40 and the 11 cover bolts were E10. GM has torque specs and order.

I purchased Part number 55564395 from eBay "GM OEM" in green cardboard box with Korean lettering but shipped from China arriving in less than a week for ~$60, total including shipping. Online pictures were perfectly clear and I just assumed they said Daewoo with appropriate logo; alas eBay photo and box clearly displayed DaRwoo lol. Box had some semi-hologram GM label but I'm not convinced that label was real. Based on quality of materials, fit, and finish, this appears to be an OEM part (maybe made off-hours).

For installation, I found this video most helpful:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jOyk9ilCEN4

Still getting a chuffing / sucking / blowing sound when I hit the accelerator hard. It only lasts about 0.5 seconds just after I hit accelerator. It happens at idle or even when "high idling" at 2000 or 3000 rpms after I punch the accelerator. I don't notice the sound when driving but it might be masked by road noise. Even the new oil cover has a bit of vacuum I need to overcome to take it off; not sure if that is a clue. Any ideas?

Repaired wiring harness at valve cover Whilst replacing the valve cover, I noticed black-plastic-ribbed-wire-tube was destroyed at the passenger-front corner of valve cover. The wires were all fine but would have been worn out soon without protection. I think this harness runs wires to MAF, intake actuator, etc. I repaired the plastic tube and used some 3M electrical tape 105*C type. This is very easy to check and takes 2 minutes to fix. I recommend everyone check that harness for damage.

Cleaned airbox, MAF, throttle-body. Couldn't get into the throttlebody as the butterfly would not open when my buddy depressed the gas pedal. I think that happens when the ambient temperature is very high. Regardless, the outside of the TB was very clean as I cleaned it approximately a year ago. The airbox had a few acorns but otherwise the intake was nearly spotless. Made sure airbox & hoses were properly fitted and securely fastened.

Fixed dowel for cargo cover of trunk. The left black round dowel for the hard cargo cover disappeared. I opened the trunk fuse panel and found the dowel inside just as the trunk light burnt my hand. I disconnected the trunk light and figured out how to reinsert and lock the dowel in 60 seconds.

Secret test of coil pack Last month I swapped the 45k mile OEM coil pack into the car. I swapped back the replacement coilpack and car idles better and quieter. Not sure if that is the coilpack or the valve cover work lol.

Last edited by AstraFasta; 06-15-2019 at 10:54 PM..

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Old 07-20-2019, 09:52 AM   #83
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

Recharged air conditioning at shop as compressor was cycling a bit at startup. $150. AC compressor etc were replaced 2017. Ice cold quickly.

The coil pack and MAF were throwing codes but I think that was a combination of the AC compressor struggles and the computer recalibrating (new plugs, cleaned TB, cleaned MAF).

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Old 07-31-2019, 10:59 PM   #84
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

Recharging AC did NOT resolve issues.

PROBLEMS
Engine has been skipping and bucking in two scenarios.

1. When starting in the morning, the AC compressor seemed to be cycling and causing engine to skip / drop RPMs. It was rather subtle.

2. When travelling on highway and slightly accelerating, engine would buck pretty hard a few times until I let up on the accelerator pedal. I had this happen on an old GTI and it was a bad spark plug wire.

FIX
I swapped original coil pack into engine. That resolved all issues. Ebay is selling AC Delco coil packs for about $50 shipped so I have on in the mail and will install next week.

New coil pack solved both #1 and #2. No codes being thrown.

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Old 08-01-2019, 07:00 PM   #85
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

Adjusted recently installed emergency brake cable.

Also put zip ties on rear cable rubber bellows to prevent water from entering the cable.

Finally, inspected grease fittings for new drop links.

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Old 08-10-2019, 01:55 PM   #86
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

Installed new AC Delco Coil pack. That was from eBay for about $45 in colorful AC Delco Box; part only had one ACDelco reference laser etched into end but quality looked top notch. Engine more responsive and snappy now.

Replaced accessory serpentine belt and tensioner.

Trickle charged battery.

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Old 08-12-2019, 08:20 AM   #87
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

Thanks a lot for the valuable information

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Old 08-12-2019, 04:54 PM   #88
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Default Re: Astra 45k mile service - inexpensive & runs like new!

I never thought of gapping the plugs after every oil change, but that makes a lot of sense, particularly with some of the higher performance plugs and engines.

After 45k miles, the original OEM plugs on my Astra had deteriorated, and the gaps were clearly larger than they were out of the factory. That might have been driving some of the "check engine" codes and imperfect engine performance.

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