The Hulk - My 500L not-a-project project

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texanbrit
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The Hulk - My 500L not-a-project project

Post by texanbrit » Fri Mar 20, 2020 9:58 am

So funny story, I crashed my wife's Lexus GX470. While shopping for a replacement I presented the idea that a 500L met all of our needs, loads of space, good fuel economy and I knew the drive train so maintenance will be easy. My wife wasn't sure, but she was also indecisive so I took the opportunity to surprise her with this beautiful green 2014 Fiat 500L Trekking edition.
the hulk.jpg
the hulk.jpg (191.37 KiB) Viewed 1573 times
The other car guys in my neighborhood have nicknamed this new car as "The Hulk" and it stuck immediately.

The car had a couple of minor issues to address. Firstly there was a message that said "Service Engine", which I mistook as meaning that it wanted an oil change. So we changed the oil (Motul XS 5W-40), oil filter and installed a GFB DV+, because we were in that area. The Service Engine message wouldn't go away, so eventually I hooked up an OBD2 code scanner and saw this.
knock sensor codes
knock sensor codes
IMG_1305.PNG (53.79 KiB) Viewed 1573 times
It's interesting to me that the 2014 500L doesn't have a check engine light, just the service engine message at start up. Lesson learned.

We changed the knock sensor and that still didn't cure the issue. Checked all the wiring and the resistance and everything checked out. That suggested it was the PCM had an issue. Fortunately that is under warranty (Federal emissions 8 year/80k). So off to the dealership, the happiest place on earth.....

The dealership said the new knock sensor was bad, crushed during install was their thought, so they charged me for that again. That apparently cured one code but not the others, so they replaced the PCM. The car is now DTC code free.

The other issues are that the rear passenger window can't be operated from the driver's door switch, and the sun visors are hanging a bit low. Also the radio antenna was missing.

The cause of the window issue became apparent the first time I drove it in the rain. The door seal has a big chunk missing, and it leaks right onto the window control switch. I have a new seal that I need to install soon.

I bought a stubby antenna to replace the missing part. It was then I noticed that the antenna base was loose. This was further exacerbated by me washing the car, which caused the headliner to start falling down. I'm wondering if the visor issue is related to someone trying to fix these leak issues before (and failing).

So you may ask how does my wife feel about The Hulk. I wish you wouldn't though. To say she is not thrilled with it would be fairly accurate. I see it in her look of disdain every time we talk about the car. The fact that we're entirely a FIAT family now does not seem to sway her at all.
One of each
One of each
IMG_1430.JPEG (243.08 KiB) Viewed 1573 times
I chose poorly with the car and possibly the wife.

To remedy this I've promised to find my wife something less FIATy, and let one of the FIATs go.

Which one will it be? Will it be less emotionally stressful to let my wife go? Stayed tuned!
2013 Abarth 500c (NGen Turbo'd) - Isabella
2012 500 Pop (stockish fauxbarth) - Popabella
2014 500L (just starting) - The Hulk
1971 850 Sport Spider (what was I thinking) - No name yet

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MadFiat
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Re: The Hulk - My 500L not-a-project project

Post by MadFiat » Fri Mar 20, 2020 1:27 pm

Suspenseful!
2015 Rosso Abarth 5MT - MAD FIAT - EC Phase 2 + Supporting Mods
2003 PT Cruiser GT 2.4 Turbo - SALVAGE PT - SOLD to Family
2015 Granito Lucente 500T 6AT - Projecto Estupido

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NGEN
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Re: The Hulk - My 500L not-a-project project

Post by NGEN » Fri Mar 20, 2020 10:25 pm

And now it has better front brakes!
Image
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texanbrit
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Re: The Hulk - My 500L not-a-project project

Post by texanbrit » Sat Mar 21, 2020 3:11 pm

Indeed much better brakes!

Although I thought they still looked okay everyone else seemed to think the front pads and rotors were done.
old rotors
old rotors
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Also note that there is only one guide pin, this seems to be how the 500L is (there is only one on each wheel). Not sure if that's cost cutting or something to do with the 5 bolt wheels.

Went with the Brake Performance rotors from NGEN with the Brake Performance ceramic pads. The slotted rotors were a $10 cheaper than the plain, so I got those. They also look more purposeful so happy with that.
new rotors
new rotors
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Nothing particular exciting to report with the install, the hardest part was removing the retaining clips.

Of course the slide pins were well lubricated with Strawberry Shortcake flavored Valvoline.
Attachments
Lubricant
Lubricant
49684046956_decf92f13e_o.jpg (107.68 KiB) Viewed 1498 times
2013 Abarth 500c (NGen Turbo'd) - Isabella
2012 500 Pop (stockish fauxbarth) - Popabella
2014 500L (just starting) - The Hulk
1971 850 Sport Spider (what was I thinking) - No name yet

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texanbrit
Posts: 662
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:01 pm
Location: Conroe, TX
Your Car's Year / Make / Model: 2013 500c Abarth
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Re: The Hulk - My 500L not-a-project project

Post by texanbrit » Sun Mar 22, 2020 7:17 pm

Okay so the Pop is being sold, but to someone who lives in my house so it will still be close.

Part out is here: viewtopic.php?f=42&t=387

In the meantime I've added a Racechip piggyback to the Hulk, Definitely adds to the nippyness.
2013 Abarth 500c (NGen Turbo'd) - Isabella
2012 500 Pop (stockish fauxbarth) - Popabella
2014 500L (just starting) - The Hulk
1971 850 Sport Spider (what was I thinking) - No name yet

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texanbrit
Posts: 662
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:01 pm
Location: Conroe, TX
Your Car's Year / Make / Model: 2013 500c Abarth
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Re: The Hulk - My 500L not-a-project project

Post by texanbrit » Sun Jan 17, 2021 11:37 am

I changed out the spark tube seals this weekend. Resisted the temptation to add multi-air springs as I need one car that runs right now.

The valve cover on the L is harder to remove than on the 500 Abarth. The bracket at the front driver's side of the cover has 2 x 10mm bolts that seem unnecessarily hard to get to. As the bracket seems to do nothing extra, except hold up the plastic cover, this seems to just out of pure meanness on the part of the design team. I suspect the official procedure to remove the cover involves removing the charge pipe and the downpipe to get proper access to those bolts. Had to remove the battery to get at the nut on the bracket on the far right.
one of the two bolts.
one of the two bolts.
tempImagenyUuvB.gif (6.93 MiB) Viewed 765 times
We just loosened the bracket enough to get the wiggle room to get tools in there, and with sufficient brute force and ignorance got the cover off.

The seals were horribly degraded; just baked hard and crumbly. The usual method of pushing them out with a screw driver wasn't;t working so we used a 1" socket and that seemed to push the remnants out nicely.
seals
seals
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We replaced the valve cover seal as well as the spark tube seals, and put some fresh sealant at the radii (after cleaning off as much of the old stuff as possible). Added some high temp paint for a splash of color under the hood. I chose purple as couldn't find a forest green, and purple is the color of the Hulk's pants.
The Hulk
The Hulk
Hulk_Artwork.jpg (108.21 KiB) Viewed 765 times
I think it looks pretty smart.
Valve cover
Valve cover
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Then it was just a job of remembering where everything went. Might have jumbled some of the bolts, but the car is running again and seems pretty happy.
2013 Abarth 500c (NGen Turbo'd) - Isabella
2012 500 Pop (stockish fauxbarth) - Popabella
2014 500L (just starting) - The Hulk
1971 850 Sport Spider (what was I thinking) - No name yet

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