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Discussion Starter #1
Hello Kia Forum Users,

I just purchased a 2005 Kia Spectra with a few issues at a reasonable price. I am looking to see if anyone here could possibly give me some insight before I take this into the shop for some repairs.

The Kia has 140k miles on it and runs very well although the idle is a little bit rough. It sounds as if the power steering belt/pump is going to need replacing (squealing when turning the wheel at low speed or parked) and I am going to do the rest of the belts, timing belt & water pump for good measure while I'm at it along with an oil change. A tune-up, trans service, and coolant flush are on the list for a month or two out.

It does have the following CEL codes:

P0170 bank 1 fuel trim
P0171 bank 1 too lean
P2271 oxygen sensor rich bank 1 sensor 2
P0420 cat system efficiency below threshold bank 1

From what I can see they may all be tied to oxygen sensors of one kind or another. Any thoughts?

Thanks in advance!
 

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2008 SpectraSX, 2014 Optima LX,2006 Jeep Liberty, Linux Mint Mate
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With that number of miles on the car the first Cat (right off the exhaust manifold under the aluminum cover) sounds like it's worn out...

(P2271)The second O2 sensor is seeing the exhaust gas as too rich (NOX) because the first Cat is not working reducing emissions.
(P0420) Also says that the Cat is bad..
(P0170 and P171) The O2 sensor is telling the ECM that the exhaust gas is too rich and the ECM then is trying to "lean out" the Air/Fuel mixture...Another indication of Cat failure.
To test the Cat try looking at this link.
Eric is a super mechanic who wants to help...
Dave
 

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Thank you so much for the info, Dave. Looks like it will be off to a shop for the cat R/R. I'll post back the outcome.
 

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A little bit of an update on this. I cleared the codes and drove it again, after a day the following two codes came up:

P0171 Bank 1 too lean
P0030 Heated Oxy Sensor Circuit Bank 1 Sensor 1

I cleared those out again yesterday and so far nothing has come back.

Could this just be a fault in the front O2 sensor? As the car came from the dealer with the other codes present, I am not sure how long they were like that or when they popped.

Thanks again,

Jason
 

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The heated code could be a malfunctioning O2 sensor, but the lean, rich, and fuel trim codes are from a different problem. Air leak seems to be the first and most likely. Cracks in exhaust, bad cats, vacuum leaks in the intake and or intake tube, etc...

Clearing the codes should not change anything, they will come back, it just takes a few drive cycles, some more than others.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the insight.

I had a mechanic look it over and it appears there are cracks in the exhaust manifold and he also said he could not get the O2 sensor out to look at it/clean it when he tried. He said that it appears fused to the manifold. He tested the cats and said there is plenty of exhaust moving through them and they are not plugged and still look good at this point.

I also had him check the timing belt/water pump. Water pump has no leaks and the timing belt looks ok, but he said the cover hadn't been taken off in quite some time and there was some grit/dust in the case. They can't work on it until next week so he put it all back together and I took it home.

On the way home (no trouble codes) it started shuddering and loosing power. I was able to pull over and when I rolled forward again it had no power at all. The engine would rev but it just didn't want to move at anything more than a crawl. I put it in neutral, revved up the motor to 2k rpm, let it come back to idle and put it in gear. From there it was fine for the rest of the short trip. It hadn't done that at all before I took it to him, it was peppy and had plenty of get up.

He quoted $550 on the timing belt/water pump and other engine belts and whopping $1k on a manifold and O2 sensor change out.

Could the issues that cropped up when I was driving home have been from him trying to get out the O2 sensor and causing more harm to it? Is there anything I should look out for?

I can only repair one of those items at a time, which is more pressing?

Thanks again,

Jason
 

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Jason...
I'm a 63 Year old man and I'd tackle it BEFORE handing out that amount of money.
I changed my wifes 07 Spectra timing belt in aprox 4hrs with basic tools... "IF" the water pump is not making noise or leaking I'd suggest you replace ONLY the timing belt at this time... IF the exhaust manifold is actually cracked visit a local salvage yard and get the O2 sensor, #1 Cat, and the manafold as one "unit". You will need both the "exhaust manifold gasket" and "exhaust gasket after the #1 Cat". You may have to leave a deposit on the used ass'y as the OLD Cat is valuable and you will need to return it as a dud... Find a Spectra from 2007~2009 with low mileage (under 50k).
For the amount of money It's not really that hard to do and even "if" you need to buy tools to do the job...they will be there for you on the next repair...
WE WILL support your repair attempts and will give you step by step help...
That's what we are here for!
The TB is under $25 shipped at rockauto.com...The exhaust manifold/O2 Sensor/Cat can be found used at car-part.com...then call around for the best price.. The gaskets can also be bought at rockauto...
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Hi Dave,

Thanks for your reply! I've been able to find a few deals on parts. I'm looking at changing out this weekend:

Timing Belt and possibly the pulleys (water pump if needed). I found your guide on the forums and signed up on the kiatech site for access to that information.

AC Belt, PS Belt, Alt Belt Might as well, they are coming off anyhow and the ps belt is squealing like mad.

I'm going to try to get the oxy sensor out and I have a friend who may be able to weld the manifold for now if that's doable. If not, I can get a manifold/cat from parts geek for 390.00 if I'm not able to get a yard to ship me a manifold for less than that. I didn't find anything near me, although I will call around a bit.

If I can get the oxy sensor out without stripping the manifold I am purchasing a Bosch replacement - I've read this should be ok as an OE substitute. True?

I'm also going to do the spark plugs, who knows how long they've been in there. Iridium or Platinum NKG? What should the gap be?

Lastly I took it for a ride last night to see if the shuddering re-occurred. It did, same thing. While decelerating coming to a stop from 45mph it started to shudder and sputter but didn't stall. When accelerating again there was a definitive loss of power and the RPM's wouldn't come up right away. It did this twice on a 5mi round trip. Any thoughts on this? Still no codes have popped up. One other time this week when I started it in the afternoon the RPM's stayed up around 1400 until I put it in gear, but the issue didn't repeat.

Thanks again for all of your help! Time to dust off my mechanical skills...

Jason
 

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Same thing this morning, but it feels almost constant and I thought I could feel a misfire. The check engine light flashed a few times, but went out. I'm going to borrow a scanner and see if I can get it to capture a code while driving.

At this point I'm not sure if I should go ahead and buy the parts or not. I don't want to spend all of that money only to have another problem that may be more severe and prevent me from driving it. This is unfortunately my current commuter.

Thanks again,

Jason
 

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I think you may have a dirty IAC (intake air control) valve...With your mileage it is probably very dirty (if you haven't cleaned it as of yet). I did not go back and read through all the old posts in this thread. This WILL cause irratic idle speeds.
Bosch makes a good heated O2 sensor but stay away from them on spark plugs.
NGK is the "reference" plug KIA used in designing the ignition (spark). Platinums are fine for your car and the Gap is .044". The ignition is a HOT one meaning higher voltage and wider gap.
I found a long lost cousin that lives in Pheonix that teaches auto mechanics and is heavily into VW bugs that might be able to help you... I knew his brothers and sister but he was born after my uncle moved to Pheonix so I have just contacted him a few days ago... There has gotta be Spectra parts in your area...you just need to find a good yard.
An OBDII scanner reading real time data like short term fuel trim, temp sensors, Map and O2 sensors would be a real help...I bought one from Harbor Freight that I really like and it has paid for it's self in the three cars I have used it in...
Dave.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
A bit of an update on this. I have repaired just about everything except the exhaust manifold and I'm having a hell of a time finding the right part. I had found a good deal on a pacesetter cat that said it would fit my car, but it is lacking the bend at the bottom of the cat. Apparently that is for MT only and I have an AT. Every parts place I look at only gives me options for the MT cat and I've even tried cross referencing other cars that the parts would fit to see if I get different results. So far no joy.

Any ideas?

Thanks again!
 

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