This Chapter is designed to help the home
mechanic maintain his/her vehicle for safety,
economy, long life and peak performance.
The Chapter contains a master
maintenance schedule, followed by Sections
dealing specifically with each task in the
schedule. Visual checks, adjustments,
component renewal and other helpful items
are included. Refer to the accompanying
illustrations of the engine compartment and
the underside of the vehicle for the locations
of the various components.
Servicing your vehicle in accordance with
the mileage/time maintenance schedule and
the following Sections will provide a planned
maintenance programme, which should result
in a long and reliable service life. This is a
comprehensive plan, so maintaining some
items but not others at the specified service
intervals, will not produce the same results.
As you service your vehicle, you will discover
that many of the procedures can - and should -
be grouped together, because of the particular
procedure being performed, or because of the
close proximity of two otherwise-unrelated
components to one another. For example, if
the vehicle is raised for any reason, the exhaust
can be inspected at the same time as thesuspension and steering components.
The first step in this maintenance
programme is to prepare yourself before the
actual work begins. Read through all the
Sections relevant to the work to be carried
out, then make a list and gather together all
the parts and tools required. If a problem is
encountered, seek advice from a parts
specialist, or a dealer service department.
If, from the time the vehicle is new, the
routine maintenance schedule is followed
closely, and frequent checks are made of fluid
levels and high-wear items, as suggested
throughout this manual, the engine will be
kept in relatively good running condition, and
the need for additional work will be minimised.
It is possible that there will be times when
the engine is running poorly due to the lack of
regular maintenance. This is even more likely
if a used vehicle, which has not received
regular and frequent maintenance checks, is
purchased. In such cases, additional work
may need to be carried out, outside of the
regular maintenance intervals.
If engine wear is suspected, a compression
test will provide valuable information
regarding the overall performance of the main
internal components. Such a test can be used
as a basis to decide on the extent of the work
to be carried out. If, for example, a
compression test indicates serious internal
engine wear, conventional maintenance as
described in this Chapter will not greatlyimprove the performance of the engine, and
may prove a waste of time and money, unless
extensive overhaul work is carried out first.
The following series of operations are those
most often required to improve the
performance of a generally poor-running
a)Clean, inspect and test the battery
b)Check all the engine-related fluids
c)Check the condition and tension of the
d)Renew the spark plugs
e)Inspect the distributor cap and HT leads -
f)Check the condition of the air cleaner
filter element, and renew if necessary
g)Renew the fuel filter
h)Check the condition of all hoses, and
check for fluid leaks
i)Check the idle speed and mixture settings
- as applicable
If the above operations do not prove fully
effective, carry out the following secondary
a)Check the charging system
b)Check the ignition system
c)Check the fuel system
d)Renew the distributor cap and rotor arm -
f)Renew the ignition HT leads - as
See “Weekly checks”.
See “Weekly checks”.See “Weekly checks”.
See “Weekly checks”.See “Weekly checks”.
7Wiper blade check
6Battery electrolyte level check
5Electrical system check
3Fluid level checks
1Frequent oil and filter changes are the most
important preventative maintenance
procedures which can be undertaken by the
DIY owner. As engine oil ages, it becomes
diluted and contaminated, which leads to
premature engine wear.
2Before starting this procedure, gather
together all the necessary tools and materials.
Also make sure that you have plenty of clean
rags and newspapers handy, to mop up any
spills. Ideally, the engine oil should be warm,
as it will drain better, and more built-upsludge will be removed with it. Take care,
however, not to touch the exhaust or any
other hot parts of the engine when working
under the vehicle. To avoid any possibility of
scalding, and to protect yourself from
possible skin irritants and other harmful
contaminants in used engine oils, it is
advisable to wear gloves when carrying out
this work. Access to the underside of the
vehicle will be greatly improved if it can be
raised on a lift, driven onto ramps, or jacked
up and supported on axle stands (see
“Jacking and vehicle support”). Whichever
method is chosen, make sure that the vehicle
remains level, or if it is at an angle, so that the
drain plug is at the lowest point (see
8Engine oil and filter renewal
Maintenance procedures 1•9
8.2 Sump drain plug location
Every 250 miles (400 km) or weekly
Every 6000 miles (10 000 km) or 6 months
system immediately if the charge is low and
do not use it again until it has been recharged.
4Inspect the refrigerant pipes, hoses and
unions for security and good condition. Refit
the radiator grille.
5The air conditioning system will lose a
proportion of its charge through normal
seepage typically up to 100 g (4 oz) per year -
so it is as well to regard periodic recharging
as a maintenance operation.
1Check the final drive oil level as follows.
2Position the vehicle over a pit, or raise it at
front and rear on ramps or axle stands. The
vehicle must be level.
3Wipe clean around the final drive filler/level
plug (see illustrations) and unscrew the
plug. Using a piece of bent wire as a dipstick,
check that the oil is no more than 10 mm (0.4
in) below the plug hole.
4If topping-up is necessary, use clean gear
oil of the specified type. Do not overfill.
Frequent need for topping-up can only be due
to leaks, which should be rectified.
5When the level is correct, refit the filler/level
plug and tighten it to the specified torque
6There is no requirement for periodic oil
changing, and no drain plug is provided.
Lubricate the transmission selector and
kickdown linkages with engine oil or aerosol
1Check the shock absorbers by bouncing
the vehicle up and down at each corner in
turn. When released, it should come to rest
within one complete oscillation. Continued
movement, or squeaking and groaning noises
from the shock absorber suggests that
renewal is required .
2Raise and support the vehicle. Examine all
steering and suspension components for
wear and damage. Pay particular attention to
dust covers and gaiters, which if renewed
promptly when damaged can save further
damage to the component protected.
3At the same intervals, check the front
suspension lower arm balljoints for wear by
levering up the arms(see illustration).
Balljoint free movement must not exceed 0.5
mm (0.02 in). The track rod end balljoints can
be checked in a similar manner, or by
observing them whilst an assistant rocks the
steering wheel back and forth. If the lower arm
balljoint is worn, the complete lower arm must
be renewed .4Wheel bearings can be checked for wear by
spinning the relevant roadwheel. Any
roughness or excessive noise indicates worn
bearings, which must be renewed, as no
adjustment is possible. It is unlikely that any
wear will be evident unless the vehicle has
covered a very high mileage. It should be
noted that it is normal for the bearings to
exhibit slight endfloat, which is perceptible as
wheel rock at the wheel rim.
1Position the vehicle over a pit, or raise it at
front and rear on ramps or axle stands (see
“Jacking and vehicle support”).
2Examine the driveshaft joint rubber gaiters.
Flex the gaiters by hand and inspect the folds
and clips. Damaged or leaking gaiters must
be renewed without delay to avoid damage
occurring to the joint itself
3Check the tightness of the final drive
mounting bolts and the driveshaft flange screws.
1Except on vehicles with a wax-based
underbody protective coating, have the whole
of the underframe of the vehicle steam-
cleaned, engine compartment included, so
that a thorough inspection can be carried out
to see what minor repairs and renovations are
necessary. 2Steam-cleaning is available at many
garages and is necessary for the removal of
the accumulation of oily grime which
sometimes is allowed to become thick in
certain areas. If steam-cleaning facilities are
not available, there are some excellent grease
solvents available which can be brush-
applied; the dirt can then be simply hosed off.
3After cleaning, position the vehicle over a
pit, or raise it at front and rear on ramps or axle
stands (see “Jacking and vehicle support”).
4Using a strong light, work around the
underside of the vehicle, inspecting it for
corrosion or damage. If either is found, refer
to Chapter 12 for details of repair.
Periodically inspect the rigid brake pipes for
rust and other damage, and the flexible hoses
for cracks, splits or “ballooning”. Have an
assistant depress the brake pedal (ignition on)
and inspect the hose and pipe unions for leaks.
Renew any defective item without delay.
On carburettor models which incorporate a
stepper motor (ie. Weber 2V from 1985), good
electrical contact between the motor plunger
and the adjusting screw is essential to
maintain a regular idle speed.
Clean the plunger and adjusting screw
contact faces with abrasive paper followed by
switch cleaning fluid. Switch cleaning fluid is
available from electronic component shops.
Instruments and electrical
1Check the operation of all instruments and
2Make sure that all instruments read
correctly, and switch on all electrical
equipment in turn to check that it functions
33Idle speed linkage clean
32Brake pipe and hose check
29Steering and suspension
selector linkage lubrication
27Final drive oil level check
Every 12 000 miles or 12 months 1•17
29.3 Levering up lower arm to check
balljoint for wear
27.3b Rear axle filler plug location -
P100 models27.3a Final drive unit filler plug location
Saloon, Hatchback and Estate models