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Fiat 500 Common Failures

This nimble little urban vehicle has gained popularity among a large number of people in recent years. Its retro styling combined with its short chassis give it a winning mix that’s perfect for the city. Yes, we are talking about the Fiat 500 with its pastel colors and its characteristic headlights. Read this post up to the end and discover the common faults of the Fiat 500 .

Like any car, it’s not immune to problems. So what are the most common faults you’re likely to discover in these characterful little cars? Well, in this post we prepare a complete list.

How good is the Fiat 500?

The Fiat 500 is a very good car and although there are problems, compared to some vehicles on the road the numbers are relatively minor. It is a great option for older drivers who no longer want to travel long distances, and for young drivers who are looking for a cheap car that is economical in terms of running costs.

Common failures of the Fiat 500

Reading through these common problems should help you figure out what is wrong with your Fiat 500 car – or simply what you should pay attention to in the future. In addition, we will give you suggestions on what to do if your Fiat 500 has one of these problems.

1- Damage to the alloy

Rims with edges where a piece of the alloy may have been torn off by scratches and collisions with concrete is a common occurrence on this car, it may be due to poor driving.

The left side front wheel is usually the first to go and should be the one to get initial examination. Likewise, alloy center caps can be easily damaged by power washing, and will need some attention from you as well.

2- Problems with engine oil

If the Fiat 500 has only been used for the slightest rides around town in its lifetime, this could mean that the engine oil has been contaminated with fuel, which could mean premature failure of some parts.

There have also been reports of problems with the 1.3-litre model where oil is known to leak into the cooling system . And lastly, the oil light can often malfunction on all models, requiring an ECU reprogramming and complete oil change.

3- Engine overheating

In this case the engine overheats, white smoke comes out of the exhaust pipe and there is an inexplicable loss of coolant. It is usually one of the common failures of the Fiat 500 on certain models.

The Fiat 500 manufactured in 2008 had a recall caused by a failure in the head gasket. If your Fiat was manufactured in 2008, you may be able to get the head gasket replaced for free.

4- Black exhaust smoke

There may be very dark smoke coming from your tailpipe . You may also be able to smell oil inside the car. Well, if your Fiat has been used mainly for short trips, it is very likely that the engine oil has been contaminated by the fuel.

If not taken into account, this will lead to engine failure , for which you will have to bleed the entire oil system. If you have a 1.3 liter model, you may also have an oil leak that is affecting the cooling system. You will have to locate the leak and replace the oil tube that is causing the problem.

5- Brake pedal tight

It is very bad when you have to press the brake pedal much harder. If this is the case in your car, then there is possibly a fault in a tube that is connected to the brake booster. This is one of the common Fiat 500 failures, and you will have to remove the tube and replace it.

6- Loss of power steering

You may have noticed that there is a loss of power steering when performing slow maneuvers like parking or reversing. This is due to a faulty power steering motor .

You’re going to have to replace the power steering motor to fix this problem, since power steering is an electrical system. If the vehicle is under warranty you should be able to claim, otherwise it will cost you money.

7- Incorrect readings on the instrument panel

Another of the common failures of the Fiat 500 are indicators that give incorrect readings. The most obvious is the speedometer. Although this can affect any Fiat 500 made after 2008, it especially affects those made in 2017. The problem is a fault in the instrument panel.

8- Problems with the steering wiring

Another failure that caused a recall on the Fiat 500 was due to problems with the wiring under the steering column. A recall occurred on a number of vehicles in June 2014 as this wiring was found to be prone to premature wear, which could cause electrical failure while on the road.

If you’ve gotten to the point where your steering wheel simply doesn’t work anymore, then you’ll have no choice but to replace the entire steering column.

9- Oil warning light on

The oil warning light on the dash has been known to come on in these cars. If this is the case, then it’s not so much a problem with the oil, but with the ECU.

It is usually one of the common Fiat 500 faults, although you will have to take it to an expert to solve the problem. They will reprogram the ECU which should cost you next to nothing. You will have to change the oil and oil filter when this is done and this will cost you money.

10- Shocks or intense vibrations

You can feel intense vibrations coming from the bottom of the car while driving. The cause of the recall of the 500 manufactured in the second half of 2018 was due to a failure in the right driveshaft . It is possible that a Fiat dealer will replace the drive shaft for free.

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