Succumbed to Fiat's failing 5th gear problem

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by John and Cheryl, Apr 16, 2013.

  1. John and Cheryl

    John and Cheryl Read Only Funster

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    Was enjoying our weeks' motorhoming holiday until it was blighted by the "Fiat's fifth gear failing syndrome".

    There I was just crossing the border from Netherlands to Germany and heard a nasty noise from the gearbox which got louder. Changed into fourth and was relieved that the noise disappeared. With the help of sat nav limped to the nearest garage on Monday afternoon who said they would have a look and managed to give me a courtesy car and booked me into a self catering apartment, which was good of them. Popped back Tuesday bit disappointed to see they had the wheels off but had not looked at the gearbox yet. Told to call back at 5pm tonight as they would have a better idea. Phoned as arranged they explained they had problems finding a replacement fifth gear and to come back tomorrow at 10 am for a price. Looks like spending sleepless night wondering if I will be bankrupt tomorrow morning.

    If it is too expensive fortunately I have breakdown insurance with Safesure so at least I can get home just in time to go back to work!

    I am annoyed as even thought it is 11 years old it has only done 22,000 miles and I have read somewhere that it is a known problem due to the way the oil is supplied and you should not select fifth gear until the engine's oil has had time to warm up? Not sure how true this is? Will keep you posted. John
     
  2. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    a common fault on earlier ducato's.

    i would think around £300 to £400 inc parts at an independent garage......much more at a main stealers.

    I believe safeguard/AA will only recover if it cant be fixed in a reasonable time...which i think could be a couple of days.

    excessive price wont get a recovery usually
     
  3. John and Cheryl

    John and Cheryl Read Only Funster

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    If they can fix it great as long as they charge a reasonable price I shan't contact safeguard unless they are unable to fix it. The garage said there is only one fifth gear in Holland and another in Italy so it depends how quick they can get hold of one and fix for me. Hopefully I will know tomorrow. Thanks John for the price guidline.
     
  4. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    extract from another forum dated 2009.....

    rang fiat today and would cost £200 for the new gear and then another £200 for the sychro hub/bearing bit.

    don't know if you can buy an aftermarket/none genuine set or not.
     
  5. duane0001

    duane0001 Read Only Funster

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    Oh dear Fiat, must try harder
    On another note, my ABS light keeps lighting on my Fiat Ducato with only 22,000 miles on the clock, I will take of the wheels and clean the sensors this weekend and if that does not sort it, Then its in for more warranty work :thumb:
     
  6. John and Cheryl

    John and Cheryl Read Only Funster

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    Ok off to find out if the carage can get the part and do the repair and if they can how much its going to cost me:Eeek:
    Wish me luck
     
  7. Mel

    Mel Funster

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    Dont Fiat work a VOR {vehicle off road}system like others.

    So the parts can be in the dealer within 24 hrs

    Best of luck hope its not too expensive.

    Mel
     
  8. Taran_Las

    Taran_Las Funster

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    God luck.:thumb:
     
  9. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    Strange but true I was contacted this week by a guy with a similar problem
    he was most disapointed when i told him a 5th gear repair was more involved that a 5th gear upgrade and i suspect from his tone he did not want to know as others had alreadytold him its just an end plate of and bobs yer uncle
    Is it only me that cares where the shrapnel and swarf has ended up:RollEyes:

    Yes I could have quoted him for just a 5th gear replacement and took his dosh, after all he'd probably be back in Spain when the rest of the gears went tits up due to crap in the box
    We do care in the trade so let us do a proper job when it warranted.
    After all its you who will be fast back on here saying what a s**ty job was done:Cool:

    Fifth gear upgrade is an improvment to an already good box:thumb:
    Jumping out of gears and gear failures can be due to many things that warrant investigation
    Or your just winging it :RollEyes:
     
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  10. rainbow chasers

    rainbow chasers Read Only Funster

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    Had someone come in the other week with a dodgy EGR valve, removed it and found it to be undamaged, but the port was full or large pieces of swarf....never seen swarf there before!
     
  11. DesRes

    DesRes Funster

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    I had this failure twice on my last van over the ten years we had it, 1999 Ducato.
    The first time we were in Germany and managed to get the job done in two days at a Fiat dealers, yes it was expensive.
    I agree with the overloading theory on this, don't change up to fifth too soon and change down before the engine starts to labour.:thumb:
     
  12. John and Cheryl

    John and Cheryl Read Only Funster

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    Well i'm back and I was offered a choice of changing the 5th gear but they showed me the bits and said they had not found all the missing bits but it was up to me price for just replacement or 400 euro extra for replacing gear and cleaning gearbox completely .
    As i was on the motorway at the time when the noise started and there was not a motorway exit for some miles I opted for the replace gear and complete clean job but the price is €1411 :cry: My gear box was out and on the floor and I'm in a little town in Holland on the border with Germany and need to get back to work on Monday. Also the delivery of the part may take up to two days to arrive so I may end up driving all through the night to make it back to work on Monday so I have no choice but to pay up.
    I thought having I had got through all the stress now and it is just a matter of paying up and getting on with it however paying is not as easy as it is in England it seems. We tried to pay with my debit card but their payment system won't read it so we have to go to the cash machine every day to get money out but that has a limit and then we have the accommodation bill to pay because we could not stay in our motorhome because they need it to work on. Still, the art of living is triumph over adversity - as the garage gave us a courtesy car we have been able to get out and see the sights. Off now to enjoy a cool beer (or 3 or 4):Smile:
     
  13. DesRes

    DesRes Funster

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    That's real tough J&C, remember being there myself, though they did the job in a day for us and we stayed on a campsite throughout. Hope you have better luck once it's fixed.:Smile:
     
  14. John and Cheryl

    John and Cheryl Read Only Funster

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    Latest up date: Just got back from a day visiting my old barracks in Minden Germany where I was stationed 40 years ago and took a look around the old town while all the time hoping the garage gets the 5th gear and fits it ok.
    Well the old barracks was still there but its a school now and the guard house is a cafe.
    I could not remember much about the town, its five times as big now and I should not be surprised I cant remember the town after 40 years because I cant remember my name sometimes after a night.
    Good news the garage got the gear and fitted it ok, they have just to finish off in the morning and I have to pay the bill:cry:.
    They have explained how the gear failed, there is a drain pipe that takes the rain water that runs down the window screen through the grill at the bottom and past the gearbox, some how this drain pipe that is black rubber and about 50 mm in dia has been moved to rest over the gearbox breather pushing water into the gearbox. I don't know how long this has been happening but you can see the water marks all over the top of the gearbox.
    So a warning to anyone with a fiat ducato 2.8 jtd look for a small breather tube sticking up from the top of your gear box and make sure the rain drainage pipe is not pointing at it.
     
  15. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    thats a well known and even better documented fault......fiat have produced a modified drain hose which is longer than original to divert water down below the box.
     
  16. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    I can understand the box being out for a thorough clean out, but to change the fifth gear it can stay attached to the engine.

    the fifth gear is in an extension casing, in other words...an after-thought, attached to the end of the box and can be removed from under the inner wing once the wheel is removed.
     
  17. John and Cheryl

    John and Cheryl Read Only Funster

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    John I did see that but they had already taken the gearbox off and then quoted €1000 to clean and replace the 5th gear but they said there could still be bits bit that had moved into the main gear housing I could see the gears through an hole in the side of the gear box when the bolt on 5th gear had been removed or I could pay €1411 for a complete clean and its always better to be safe than sorry afterwards, I will keep my eye on the drain hose from now on.
     
  18. busby

    busby Funster

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    Think i paid about £220 back in 2007 for failed 5 th gear. Guy did it in under 2 hrs in a lay by. I had driven it home from Spain steady using just the 4 working gears.
     
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