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Is it my foot or is it repair?
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Thread: Is it my foot or is it repair?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Apr 2022
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    Is it my foot or is it repair?

    So got this little 2012 Pop Automatic with 214,000 miles for next to nothing and in need of some TLC. Over the two months Ive been there tinkering on it on the weekends. I live about a mile from work and minutes from the grocery store so till last week I had only drove when needed until Id finished the suspension repairs. This past week I made a point to drive it as often as I could because I wanted to see what else had to get worked on. Sunday I filled R up and was kinda shocked to
    see I had only gotten 22 miles/gallon out of that tank full. I definitely wouldnt say I was driving it extremely aggressive but wasnt putting around the whole time either. So Im wondering what else I need to look at. I understand its got a lot of miles on it but 10 miles/gal under average seems like alot to me.

    What have I already done:
    front struts
    front lower control arms
    rear shocks
    rear & front brake pads
    tires & alignment
    spark plugs (they were burnt 25 thousandths over gap spec)
    timing belt, water pump & coolent flush
    oil change with filter (twice, first when I changed plugs {the oil was absolutely foul} then again when I did the timing belt, that time I changed the the Multiair oil filter as well.
    PCV valve and PCV housing flush
    aftermarket intake from previous owner, changed air filter (k&n)
    drivers & passenger side motor mounts
    replaced engine to body ground

    still to go:
    exhaust flex pipe, decent size hole, makes it sound cool
    rear motor mount, was sent the wrong one wait on the correct one
    bottle of injector cleaner

    What else should I look at that can effect mileage? Does it have a mass air sensor the can be cleaned?
    One other thing I noticed is when I start it cold itll studder for the first few seconds. Not sure what thats from yet.

  2. #2
    Senior Member fast_dave's Avatar
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    Apr 2015
    SF Bay Area - PRK
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    Quote Originally Posted by MyEvilBanana View Post
    One other thing I noticed is when I start it cold it’ll studder for the first few seconds. Not sure what that’s from yet.
    Possible leaking injector - especially considering 214,000 miles and sudden loss in MPG.
    2012 Sport 5 speed Manual Trans, SPC Adjustable Front Camber Bolts, CorsaStrada Lower Front Chassis Brace, ST Rear Sway Bar, 205/45/16 Continental DWS 06 PLUS Tires. Night Vision = Auxito 9012/HIR2 "Clockable" LED Headlight Bulbs.

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to fast_dave For This Useful Post:

    bryanintowson (06-21-2022)

  4. #3
    smark's Avatar
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    Apr 2014
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    High mileage vehicle. Do a compression test.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to smark For This Useful Post:

    Fiat500USA (06-21-2022)

  6. #4
    Moderato map's Avatar
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    Dec 2018
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    Quote Originally Posted by MyEvilBanana View Post
    I had only gotten 22 miles/gallon out of that tank full.
    Hopefully it's a fluke. There aren't any codes in the computer? I'd try calculating actual MPG (miles/gallons added) not the "guessometer" computer and also check over multiple tanks. Now that you are driving again it could clear off, or maybe your former tank wasn't completely filled.

    I track every fill using Fuelly, which helps average everything out. Last summer I had consecutive tanks fluctuating wildly at every fill. The wildest was reading 53.9 MPG followed by 22.8 MPG. I suspect the pumps are overly sensitive, so I have them set the fill speed on the lowest notch. I had a different problem in 2019 with an occasional tank dropping 10-15 MPG. A locking gas cap fixed that problem.

  7. #5
    smark's Avatar
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    Apr 2014
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    Since you car has such high mileage. Replace the fuel injectors, and coil packs too!

    Take you car, out on the highway. Planned route. Tank to tank. See what type of fuel economy your getting. Sound like you only driving
    Your car every once in a while. Just to the grocery store.

  8. #6
    Amministratore Fiat500USA's Avatar
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    Feb 2011
    New York
    Thanked 7,470 Times in 4,481 Posts
    A few questions. How did you figure the gas mileage? Did you use the trip computer or manually compute it. The trip computer calculation is frequently off, so if you are having a fuel economy issue, you should check it manually. Fill it up, record mileage and then fill up again, preferably at the same station and same pump and record the mileage, etc. Sometimes a different gas pump will turn off before the tank is full and screw up the mileage calculations.

    It looks like you've done a lot of maintenance on the car, so you got that covered.

    Double checking, just make sure the tire pressures are where they are supposed to be. Also, make sure your brakes are not dragging. Those two things really can kill mileage.

    You already took care of the air filter and oil. Dirty engine oil can affect the MultiAir, so that's something that should be kept up with. Use 5W30 and don't do the 10K oil changes. For spark plugs, use the OEM ones and not the equivalents sold at pep boys, etc.

    If you aren't burning oil, the engine is probably good, but at that mileage, a compression check wouldn't be a bad thing. A vacuum gauge check would also help see if you've got a clogged exhaust.

    Other than that, gas mileage is largely a matter of where you drive and how. An automatic in the city with stop and go traffic and trying to keep up with traffic can really drag the mileage down. One thing to keep in mind is the 500 was designed to be a fun lifestyle car and not a fuel economy champ. The fuel economy ratings for a 2012 Pop with automatic is 27/34 mpg (City/Hwy).

    I bet if you drove it consciously to get better gas milage (gradual acceleration, timing lights and trying to get into high gears as soon as possible) you would see a marked improvement.

    You can also try shifting the car manual. Getting the car into high gear as quickly as possible will really help milage. Fiat used to have the EcoDrive program that came with the car that would analyze how you drive and give advice on how to improve your gas milage. Generally, the recommendation was do gradual acceleration (duh) and to shift a manual car into the next highest gear by 1900-2000 rpm, depending on load. Obviously you don't want to lug the engine, but if you are on a flat road surface and can get away with that without lugging, you'll see a big improvement. MultiAir technology, which boosts low speed and part throttle torque, are the key to making this work. I tried it and it helped me to really up my fuel economy game.

    Here's some info on EcoDrive

    Let us know how you make out.
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