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Old 15th February 2010, 13:31   #16
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Originally Posted by Randhawa View Post
Just google a bit about mondeo subframe and all your doubts will be cleared.
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Originally Posted by goingout View Post
You should also go through fordmondeo.org.
The best place to get all your answers, they should be able to help. There is also a very detailed Wiki there.

Good Luck!

PS: Mondeo is awesome, don't give up yet!
Thanks. Actually Ajmat introduced me to this forum when I bought the car. Since then I am a regular visitor there. I got the bushes changed twice only after reading through many threads on Subframe issues.

Anyways I am going to open the Subframe once again tomorrow. This time I will personally inspect it for any damages. Keeping my fingers crossed!!

In the past one year, I tried everything that I could to fix the problem. Spent lot of money and time. The decision to scrap the car is taken mainly because I want to save myself from the constant frustration and mental agony. The past one year had been very tough.
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Old 15th February 2010, 13:33   #17
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Originally Posted by Astleviz View Post
Since you have mentioned you can take your car to an place in India, Why don't you give these guys a call-
Oberai Suspension - Specialist in Suspension, Power Steering, Clutch, Brake. Bandra West, Mumbai

I have personally never tried them out but stumbled through their website while searching for suspension specialists n India. Not sure if they are really as good as they claim, maybe mumbai teambhpians can share their experiences...
Thanks a lot for the information. I am more than willing to go to these guys. Anyone on the forum have any first hand experience with them?
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Old 15th February 2010, 15:17   #18
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Just before you take the right turn to go into the lane where RAC is, you would find a workshop (on the right) which has AMARON written on its entrance. Go inside that workshop and ask for Nagaraj (him and only him). Tell him your problem, this guys is generally called "gypsy king" by the rally fraternity and provides service to rally cars. He is good at what he does and I am sure he will be able to sort your issue out too. Price wise I have found him good, never overcharges.

Cheers
Shrey
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Old 15th February 2010, 15:25   #19
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novice, i would suggest you take the car once to "FRK" and get it checked by "Fazal", that is if you have not done that already?

I would suggest Nagaraj too, guess you have couple of options and amsure your problem should be solved!

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Just before you take the right turn to go into the lane where RAC is, you would find a workshop (on the right) which has AMARON written on its entrance. Go inside that workshop and ask for Nagaraj (him and only him). Tell him your problem, this guys is generally called "gypsy king" by the rally fraternity and provides service to rally cars. He is good at what he does and I am sure he will be able to sort your issue out too. Price wise I have found him good, never overcharges.

Cheers
Shrey

Last edited by Dippy : 15th February 2010 at 15:31. Reason: Back to back posts
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Old 15th February 2010, 15:58   #20
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I have heard FRK charges a bomb? Is it true?

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Originally Posted by lohithrao View Post
novice, i would suggest you take the car once to "FRK" and get it checked by "Fazal", that is if you have not done that already?

I would suggest Nagaraj too, guess you have couple of options and amsure your problem should be solved!
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Old 15th February 2010, 16:56   #21
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Mods, can we move this very interesting thread to technical stuff please?
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Old 16th February 2010, 10:10   #22
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I have replaced 9 struts (yes you read it right nine times) at the rear in the past 10 months, 7 on the left and 2 on the right.
Clearly the outcome of poor diagnosis. The Mondeo bombed in the market, and authorised Ford dealers simply aren't trained / equipped to handle the car.

Only one thing I can recommend to you : A good independent. Research, search, look for recommendations and find an independent who knows what he is doing. Of course, if you are able to zero in on one who has some experience with Mondeos, that's a bonus.

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Mods, can we move this very interesting thread to technical stuff please?
Thanks, moved.
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Old 16th February 2010, 11:29   #23
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A friend of mine bought a Mondeo for his office use. If I recall it was about 20 lakhs on the road at that time. When he tried to sell it a year or so ago, he was getting offers in a few lakhs so he decided to run it to the ground. Spares a huge problem and the Chennai dealer will not import the more expensive spares unless you pay ahead for them.

All I can suggest to people is to say away from this car unless you have a good independent mechanic and source the parts directly from UK.
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Old 16th February 2010, 11:45   #24
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I think you will have to catch hold of a good service adviser with the dealer and then completely down the rear suspension. Check each part, set it right and re-assemble. This will be expensive and you will need to convince the A.S.S in the first place. This is the only logical option i see.

If not put the car up for sale through a dealer and exit.
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Old 16th February 2010, 11:50   #25
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This will be expensive and you will need to convince the A.S.S in the first place.
Gone are the days when customer was the king, I feel you should write in to Ford india and tell them the whole thing, though its a phased out model now but the company is legaly bound to take car of the car for the next 10 years.

Pramod
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Old 16th February 2010, 13:37   #26
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Clearly the outcome of poor diagnosis. The Mondeo bombed in the market, and authorised Ford dealers simply aren't trained / equipped to handle the car.
True, It wouldn't have reached this stage if cam bolts were replaced in the beginning itself.

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Originally Posted by pramodkumar View Post
Gone are the days when customer was the king, I feel you should write in to Ford india and tell them the whole thing, though its a phased out model now but the company is legaly bound to take car of the car for the next 10 years.

Pramod
I did that once for the clutch. I complained to Ford MD regarding clutch problems and dealer's reluctance to replace it under warranty. People at Ford followed it up with the dealer and made sure they replaced the part under warranty even though it was well beyond warranty norms(20K Kms and 1 year).

But I am skeptical about this one, even if Ford is willing to take up the case I really doubt if their dealers would be able to resolve the problem.


@lohithrao, ssjr0498: Thanks. The car is currently in a workshop. They have some experience with Mondeo. I asked them to completely dismantle the rear suspension. This time I am going to inspect each and every bit and see if I could figure out something. I will decide the next course of action based on the outcome.
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Old 16th February 2010, 14:15   #27
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For all you know the subframe may notbe damaged - maybe just poor bush mountings which needs a special tool. I saw the tool on ebay for around 12 pounds. Only problem i they don't ship to UK. You could ship it to someone you know in the UK though
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Old 23rd March 2010, 20:33   #28
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Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
For all you know the subframe may notbe damaged - maybe just poor bush mountings which needs a special tool. I saw the tool on ebay for around 12 pounds. Only problem i they don't ship to UK. You could ship it to someone you know in the UK though
I spent lot of time and money in the past one month to fix the car. Took the car to my neighborhood garage to fix top mounts as they have some experience with Mondeos. They called up someone who is a body shop specialist. His suggestion after inspecting the car was to cut open the steel plates that are covering top mounts from both boot and behind the rear seat areas so that top mount bolts could be accessed easily. Unlike any other car on the road, top mount bolts on the Mondeo are welded to the body and they can't be reached without cutting chassis plates. He offered to fabricate new nuts and weld them in after removing old ones. I agreed to the proposal and asked him to carry out the work on both sides. In the meantime I asked the mechanics at the garage to strip out the entire rear suspension including the subframe. I personally inspected every bit but couldn't find anything that looked suspicious. Finally I got the car back after a week and the subsequent test drive was disappointing and depressing.

I then took the car to Lathangi Ford and asked them to replace the rear subframe along with all nuts/bolts/washers. Took the car for test drive after the work but it was even more disappointing and depressing. Every bit and piece of the rear suspension is replaced with new components but there is absolutely no improvement in the way the rear suspension behaves.

My common sense tells me to dispose the car and get something else. But the petrolhead inside me is not letting me to give up. I even test drove few Mondeos thinking that I could transfer all the new parts I put in my car to the new one and sell mine. Although the suspension is in good condition in all of them, their overall condition is nowhere near my car.

I am thinking what to do next.

Last edited by novice : 23rd March 2010 at 20:34.
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Old 24th March 2010, 12:40   #29
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My common sense tells me to dispose the car and get something else. But the petrolhead inside me is not letting me to give up.
Whoa! You sure are spending a whole lot of time on fixing your Mondeo. If you are looking at a lateral upgrade, selling the Mondeo and getting yourself a Skoda RS would be a good move. RS prices dropping like stink.

And if you don't mind a car that's more compact, used Fiesta 1.6S are going dirt cheap (thanks to Fords 5.5 lakh specials on new 1.6'). Friends on a way to pick up an '09 with 9K on the odo for 5 lakhs.
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Old 14th May 2010, 15:04   #30
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After spending more than a year and truck load of money in trying to fix my car's suspension I finally managed to set it right. It now drives just perfect, I can now proudly say there is probably no other Mondeo in the country that drives better than mine because every bit and piece of the suspension is new :-).

I would like to write up what happened in the past one year and how it was misdiagnosed and even after the problem was diagnosed why it all went wrong when I tried to fix it due to series of errors made by the dealer. I would be gald if my experience saves someone from getting into the unfortunate situation that I found myself in. I apologize for the lengthy post.

It drove well with a perfect handling to begin with. I did jump over road humps coulple of times during this honeymoon period. Then I began feeling some minor vibrations and body movement at the rear left wheel area when the car went over rough patches. This soon developed into major knocks and unpredictable handling. At times the body movement was violent while going over uneven road surfaces.

Took the car to the dealer and they diagnosed it to the worn out rear left strut. So got it replaced and it seemed fine. But all old symptoms started to reappear after driving for about 500 kms. I went back to the dealer and they replaced the strut under warranty. But the stroy repeated. Then went back to the other dealer and asked them to strip out the entire rear suspension and inspect every part. They called me few later and told me that Ford's own Technical Trainer was in town and he himself inspected every part and found nothing wrong. They said that they added plastic bushes to strut top mounts to kill the noise and the car feels fine. But I had no idea about the problems that I am about to face due to those platic bushes. This was mistake no.1

As I didn't know what else to do I redued the usage of the car and drove very rarely. A couple months later the car felt very terrible to drive and I was forced to change the strut yet again although I knew it is not going to last even for a month's time. When I went to take delivery of the car, I came across the mechanic who changed the strut. While talking to him casually he mentioned that Mondeo strut mount design is very poor. When I probled him further he said the strut mount has only two bolts instead of three and the nuts for both the bolts have thier threads stripped. As a result he couldn't tighten the strut bolts properly and he couldn't add extra nuts on top as well since they are at inaccebile location.

I thought I figured out the reason for my car's suspension trouble and really believed I could fix the problem now. Took the car to my neighbourhood garage who has some experience with the Mondeo. Explained the problem to them and the garage owner said they can rethread the strut mount nut and fix a bigger bolt. I agreed and they immediately started the work.

As I was talking to someone at the garage I suddenly heard a loud metal noise and saw my car dropping to the ground. A newbie put a jack under the rear left lower arm from behind the boot and tried lifting the car up. The lower arm gave up and the car crashed to the ground. This incident was the final nail in the coffin and I realized the consequences of this incident only recently and paid a huge price for it. It was the mistake no.2

Luckily I had a spare lower arm, so replaced the bent lower arm with the that one. After the mount was fixed I got the whell alignment done. But the car felt lot wrose to drive after this job. Earlier it used to run fine for about 500 kms after I remove and refix the suspension and get the wheel alignment done. But post this job it drove pathtically all the time.

I thought may be the subframe bushs are gone, so got them replaced. It still made no difference. In the meantime I replaced the strut couple of times. Then one day when I went for the wheel alignment the guy who performed the aliggment mentioned that he wasn't able to get rear wheels aligned properly and asked me to get the cam bolts and washers replaced.

Went back to the Ford dealer and placed order for new cam kit. A week later I received a call from the dealer and they said they received only one washer instead of two. So I asked them to fix the new set to the left and use the new bolt and the old washer to the right side. This was mistake no. 3. I should have insisted for the new washer but I didn't and paid the price. Within few weeks after this job I started facing similar problems from the rear right suspension as well. It appears that Ford has slightly changed the Cam bolt and washer designs and the old bolt and new washer are not compatible. As a result threads on the cam bolt got stripped and this allowed the lower arm to move freely and damaged threads on strut top mount nuts.

I was dying to fix the problem on one side but ended up with similar problem on the other side as well. I went back to my neighbourhood garage to fix the right side top mount. But I discovered that the left side top mount which was rethreaded earlier had its threads stripped once again. I couldn't rethread them again since there was not much metal left in the nuts.

They called in a body shop specialist and he came up with a proposal after inspecting the car. He said he would cut open chassis plates that cover the top mount and weld out the old nuts. Then he would fablicate new ones and weld them in. I agreed and the work was over in a weeks time.

While refixing the struts, the wise and old mechanic spotted something that is abnormal in the top mount. He showed me a white plastic bush that is fixed between the strut shaft and the top mount. Just one look at it he said it is not an oem item and someone fixed it as an add-on. I remebered the incident which I labelled as mistake no.1. It was indeed added by the Ford dealer. These bushes were the real culprits for the top mount problem. The way the top mount is designed it allows the strut shaft to move freely up and down and swing sideways if required. But by adding a bush there the free movement of the shaft is reduced. So when the lower arm moved freely because of the worn cam it pulled the strut along with it. Since the strut couldn't swing freely it pulled the whole top mount assembly with it. This put enormous strain on the top mount bolts and threads got stripped out.

Finally the strut mounts were fixed once and for all. But the severe knocking and unpredictable handling continued. Ajmat stronly suspected the subframe to be at fault. I also believed that it is the subframe that is causing the trouble. So went to the dealer and asked him to repalce the rear-subframe, subframe bolts and Cam bolts/washers. I went to pick up the car hoping for a miracle but the test drive turned out to be rather disappoining. When I checked the bill I could see only cam bolts and there was no mention of cam washers. I asked the Service advisor if they have replaced the cam washer. I guess he didn't have a clue about what is a Cam washer but he promised it was replaced. I believed his words and dind't pursue it further as there were many other washers mentioned in the bill. I thought they may have billed the cam washer as regular one by mistake. It was mistake no.4 and it costed me Rs.25K later. I should have talked to the parts manager to know the truth.

Drove the car for few weeks and the knocking and handling became unbearable. In the meantime I wanted to see what was wrong with the old subframe. So took to the balcony of my flat for better visiblity and sat out for falut finding. At first glance everything looked fine, bushes were strong. But on a closer look I spotted something. The Subframe has grooves on either side of the Cam bolts and washers to keep them in place. On a closer look I figured that one of the groove on the left inner side where the cam wahser sits is damaged. This probably happened because of mistake no.2 that I mentioned earlier. This is not visible to a naked eye, it can only be felt when I put my finger there. This allowed the lower arm to move freely casuing all sorts of trouble. So it became clear that worn out cam bolts/washers and grooves are the root cause here.

By this time I realized the dealer didn't actually replace washers and I confirmed this by calling up the parts manager. Took the car to an alignment center and asked them to remove cam kits. As expected both the cam bolt and washer were completely worn out. Then I checked the grooves and found that the outer groove on the left side is completely missing. It appears that when new cam bolts were fixed with old worn out washers, they lasted only for few days. The excessive movement of the bolt damaged the groove and dislodged it completely.

Went to garage again and asked them to weld metal pieces where the grooves are supposed to be. Then got new cam kits from dealer. But it didn't last long either. On a closer look at the subframe I realized that there is some extra gap between the grooves and this allowed some extra movement for the bolts. Ford's design for the rear cam is really pathetic. The tolerance level is absolutely neglegeble and there is no margin for error.

So went back to the dealer and placed order for new subframe, cam kits, ARB links/bushes and strut. Few days later the delaer called me up and said all parts are received. This time I didn't want to trust people at the dealership and I wanted to be there all the time and make sure they don't make anymore mistakes. They removed everything and started fixing new parts. The mechanic first fixed a new cam bolt and washer to the right side. Then began fixing the new bolt with the old asher on the left side. I asked him where is the new wahser and he replies that they got only one from ford. But before stating the work they told me that they received all ordered parts. I checked the washer that he was about to fix and I could see it is already worn out. Another blunder was about to happen but thank god I was there to stop it. I checked the other washer that was removed the right side and it was in a good condition, so asked him to use that one. Thougt everything is in control but the next second my heart stopped when I saw what the mechanic was trying to do. After tighteing the cam nut to some extent he proceeded to put a spanner on the bolt and started tightening it. If he continued that it would have sure stripped the cam bolt thread since the cam washer would not allow the bolt turn freely and if forced it would slip on the bolt. Once again thank god I was there to prevent that from happening.

After seeing they way they do their work I strongly believe, everytime I fixed a new cam, my car actually came out with its cam kit damaged. If look back at everything that happneed over the past one year, it was a small fault to begin with that could have been corrected for few hundred rupees. I believe when I went over humps few times I probably damaged the cam. If it was dianosed early it could have been corrected easily. But because of wrong diagnosis by the dealer and Ford's own technician and series of errors done by both the dealer and my neighbourhood garage made sure that I go through an agonising experience.

I thank everyone for all the suggestions and encouragement. At one stage I even considered disposing the car. But I am happy that it all ended well and a drive in my car never felt this good.

A special thanks to you Ajmat. It was your post that made me to check the surframe and move in the right direction. I owe you a drink yet again.

Thanks,
Novice.

PS: My car used up 12 struts in the past 1.5 years and I have done 27000 KMS despite all the suspensions troubles and car being off the road for months together.

Last edited by novice : 14th May 2010 at 15:07.
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