Isuzu DMax

Submitted: Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 21:07
ThreadID: 98058 Views:17676 Replies:9 FollowUps:3
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Wanting to know if anyone has had bad dealings with Isuzu getting engine repairs carried out.

Currently 50 days off the road and they have just removed the head off our DMax 42,000km.

Has anyone had a similar problem with No1 pot being melted. Vehicle was fitted with Steinbauer chip by Dealer in new vehicle.
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Reply By: Member - Rosco from way back - Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 21:25

Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 21:25
Can't help with your particular vehicle cobber, but I'll be following this post with interest. You say the car was re-chipped by the dealer from new.
I wonder what Mr Isuzu will have to say about that and their warranty.

It may well come down to a blue between you and the dealer, with the manufacturer wiping his hands.
AnswerID: 495049

Follow Up By: Mark S (cns) - Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 09:30

Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 09:30
Yes, I think the core of this issue is that an IUA dealer fitted an aftermarket performance chip to a new vehicle!
That in itself seems bizzare, and I assume they advised you of any new car warranty ramifications?
From where I sit, I agree that Isuzu would appear to have a get-out-of-jail-free card to play here and you have to sort it out with the dealer, which may mean getting steinbauer involved & on side to confirm that the chip did not contribute to a meltdown, if installed in accordance with their recommendations.

Aside from that, 1st time I've heard of an Isuzu diesel letting go like that, they have a bullet-proof reputation.

Good luck with it all - it will be interesting to hear how you go.
FollowupID: 770730

Reply By: Ross M - Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 22:16

Sunday, Sep 16, 2012 at 22:16
If you are only dealing with the dealer to get to IUA then stop.

If they authorized the fitting of the chip then the repair is between them and Steinbaeur to sort it out.

Isuzu dealerships are not any better than other dealerships of other makes.
With all dealerships, some can be good, most/many are not.
I would think with the new man at the helm of Isuzu Aust would be having a cracking go at making their dealerships the best, through incentives and discipline.
However, it seems this is not the case, not yet anyway.

Either the injector or the chip has malfunctioned. It would seem to be the injector from what you have said, rather than the chip. It is unlikely the chip, as it would have included all cylinders in it's operation. But I'm always suspect of chips though.

The injector is a mechanical device and can fail at anytime, although most seem very good.

1. Contact IUA customer service via the info on their site. Address your concern to Mr. Takeuchi himself, of course others will deal with your claim/issue.

It is unreasonable for them to have not had proceedings underway and rectified promptly. It can't be too hard to make a decision regarding your repair. Most can decide within a few hours of a suitable course of action to rectify a problem. Find out why the delay, why they can't decide.

They will have dealt with Steinbaeur before so already have the channels of communication, especially if they fitted the chip, if indeed the chips is the issue.

2. They should be covering your 1/6th of a year registration fees. You bought the vehicle to use, not to be disabled. Ask if they are willing to support the disabled.

AnswerID: 495052

Reply By: Dust-Devil - Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 11:09

Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 11:09

I personally know of two totally different diesel vehicles with similar kilometers and chipped,where a very similar thing has happened. Keeeeeep! reading.

The technical experts from the Head Office of the vehicles in question made on site inspections and in the first instance went straight for the ECU as apparently it keeps a particular log of 'things' going on/in the engine.

With this in mind, the dealership handling your problem could either do the same or arrange for it to be checked to determine whether or not it was a faulty injector, the chip or something else entirely.

If they say that this is not possible, THEN it's time to contact Isuzu Head Office and have a chat.

AnswerID: 495075

Reply By: TerraFirma - Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 12:27

Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 12:27
I fitted a Steinbauer chip well after my warranty had expired on my Hilux. This could well be a can of worms because one would think the fitting of the chip has voided the warranty. engine troubles 42k in are very rare and I suppose we need to know what has failed? Was the chip left on it's standard setting or has someone changed settings to find more power? You mention number one pot melted? What was the service history, oil change intervals? Lots of questions and I don't believe anyone here will have the answers for just yet.
AnswerID: 495081

Reply By: Grumpy01 - Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 12:39

Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 12:39
Further info to those who have replied or are interested:
1) Approx 1 week after we broke down 29/7, Cartwright Group (Southport) went into liquidation hence no dealership.

2) Was advised by New Vehicle Salesman to fit Steinbauer chip as we were towing caravan around Australia. It would increase torque and power.

3) At no point were we advised that warranty would be void when we left the Dealership.

4) IUA are blaming the after market chip but cannot prove it and as yet have not made contact with Steinbauer.

5) Issue was placed in the hand of NT Consumer Affairs, now it is in the hands at office of Fair Trading Qld at Southport.

6) We are running out of ideas on how to get our engine repaired or replaced.

Any more ideas would be appreciated
AnswerID: 495083

Follow Up By: Dust-Devil - Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 13:07

Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 13:07
Ok, IUA have taken a position that the cause of your problem/s is the after market chip.

That being so, it therefore follows that they have evidence of same to base this assertion on, which, if correct should be in the ECU log files.

The root cause of the malfunction has to be identified beyond all reasonable doubt before you can begin to progress this matter towards a final outcome.

(1) Request IUA to produce whatever evidence it is that they are relying on to point the finger at the subject as being the culprit.

If they comply with this request and it is obvious that the chip is to blame, well that's a whole new ball game.

(2) If they cannot or will not provide you with the aforementioned evidence, then I would suggest it may be time for a call to the ACCC.

FollowupID: 770737

Reply By: TerraFirma - Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 14:50

Monday, Sep 17, 2012 at 14:50
So if cylinder 1 suffered a melt down then is it safe to assume the injector has failed? Whilst it may be easy to blame the SB chip I'm not sure evebn if there was an issue with the chip that it would cause the injector to fail completely? Yes I know it controls fuel and tiiming but the factory ecu is still functioning as I understand it.? Some interesting comments from this Chip maker, read on...

Quote: "Will the Nafta Chip affect my warranty?

No. The only way it can affect your warranty is if it causes damage to your engine. Because it plugs in before the ECU, it can’t. The ECU will pick up anything that may be wrong and cause the car to go into limp home mode. THIS WILL ONLY HAPPEN IF THE CHIP IS TUNED TO HIGH. However, we do recommend that you take the chip off if the car goes into the dealer. Dealers look for any excuse not to fix things in your car, the chip will only give them an excuse.

End Quote:

AnswerID: 495088

Reply By: member - mazcan - Tuesday, Sep 18, 2012 at 11:38

Tuesday, Sep 18, 2012 at 11:38
hi grumpy
the problem could also be related to a partly blocked oil feed from new to the no 1 cylinder there might have been just enough oil feed for the crankshaft but the higher up gudgin pin and rings would get less in each case of this situation and cause the melt down under loadover a duration of time and distance we had this problem many years ago with a new international truck engine
was there any evidence of white smoke from the exhaust prior to the failure this would indicate over fueling to no 1 cylinder
the dealer will jump on the easiest way out if they can and blame any thing they can rather than fess up and so will isuzu
the out come will be a long and hard faught battle been there and done that with another brand 4x4
i won in the end but it wasnt easy they are the powers to be and you are only equivelant to an ant they will squash you if they can
fight hard gather all posible facts and make sure its all in writing dont rely on who said what on the phone
cheers and good luck
AnswerID: 495146

Reply By: Dust-Devil - Thursday, Sep 20, 2012 at 13:13

Thursday, Sep 20, 2012 at 13:13
G 01

Very interested to know where things are at with you and Isuzu re the cause of the 'melt down' in No 1 pot.

How about an update please.

AnswerID: 495303

Reply By: Grumpy01 - Thursday, Sep 20, 2012 at 17:53

Thursday, Sep 20, 2012 at 17:53
This is a copy of the response from Isuzu

Apologies for the perceived delay - the last communication between yourself and IUA was on the 7th September advising that you had made the decision to escalate the situation to Fair Trade, and as you may be aware by doing so the process becomes quite complex. IUA must wait for initial contact to be made by Fair Trade in order for the case to proceed.

We (IUA) were advised by Isuzu UTE Darwin that they have not had any further instructions from you with regards to your vehicle and in turn it still remains at the dealership with the cylinder head removed. We do wish to assist you with your repair even though this is not a manufacturing defect of the vehicle - Isuzu UTE Australia is willing to assist you within reason if we can.

The failure of the engine is attributable to the fitment of the Aftermarket “Steinbauer” power module, therefore we suggest that you contact Steinbauer and explain your dissatisfaction and resulting engine damage. The Steinbauer power module is installed in series to OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) injector wiring harness and utilises a signal from Accelerator Pedal Position (APP) Sensor to judge drivers intent or request.

The module, according to Steinbauer’s information gives a 20% increase in power and torque. As you may know, to increase the power in a diesel engine via the fuel system it can done in one of two ways: either increase fuel pressure so more fuel enters the cylinder for the given injector open time; or make the injector stay open longer – both result in more fuel entering the cylinder than the Engine Control Module and OEM fuel map. The sales invoice clearly states this is an aftermarket accessory, the warranty policy outlined in your warranty and service booklet states the Isuzu D-Max warranty does not cover damage due to alterations.

Isuzu engine designers invest considerable time and money to develop a fuel map which delivers optimum power, performance and fuel consumption whilst meeting strict emission regulations and ensuring that the engine meets the requirement of the Federal Government with regards to CO, NOX, Particulate Matter (PM) and Hydrocarbons which are released into the atmosphere. Altering the OEM fuel map and power output will alter these elements and often introduce component failures due to excessive stress and combustion temperatures.

The Steinbauer module, alters the injector opening duration allowing excess fuel into the combustion chamber giving the resultant 20% increase in power however, their own literature provides a warning about the operation. Quote – “Due to original tolerances of manufacturing the pre-set characteristic map of the Steinbauer additional electronic may offer too much or too less power enhancement. An inflated characteristic map causes more soot creation, engine misfires, bumpy idle running (variations of revolution speed), “bucking”, stop or emergency mode of engine (severe less power) or flashing of defect control lights”. Unquote

The pictures supplied by Darwin Isuzu UTE of your disassembled engine clearly illustrate that the resultant damage is due to over fuelling - #1 cylinder piston crown has melted due to increased combustion temperature caused by excessive fuelling which has also lead to erosion of the exhaust valve due to the abnormal combustion temperature, cylinders #2 and #3 shows signs of washing of the bore and piston crowns resulting in no carbon present and cylinder #4 also shows signs of bore washing.

All the information which has been made available proves the engine failure is a direct result of the non-genuine Steinbauer power module and accordingly is not eligible to be claimed as a warranty repair. Isuzu UTE Australia stand strong behind the vehicle warranty and if a fault in manufacturing had have been determined, the warranty would have been honoured and the repairs carried out in the quickest possible time. This however isn’t the case.

As I have said previously IUA do sympathise with your situation, especially given your circumstances and would like to be able to offer a gesture of goodwill, with this being said, please clarify what it is you would like IUA to do to help resolve this to your satisfaction.

I await your response.

Kind Regards,
AnswerID: 495317

Follow Up By: Dust-Devil - Thursday, Sep 20, 2012 at 23:00

Thursday, Sep 20, 2012 at 23:00

(1) Isuzu have categorically stated in writing that the addition of the aftermarket SB-Chip is the root cause of the issue at hand due to altering the OEM ECU mapping, leading to over fueling and subsequent piston melting.

(2) Their stated justification for this assertion is (a) observations (b) pictures and (c) SB-Chip manufacturer self disclosed tech specs of the subject chip.

(3) At face value it looks like a done deal, however, this is not necessarily so.
(a) Isuzu have conveniently non disclosed the data from the ECU log which may or may not substantiate their stated claims.
(b) The mention of the SB-Chip altering OEM anti pollution settings is another red herring issue altogether and can only be considered once any ECU log data is produced.
(c) Isuzu have not stated that they have eliminated all other possible scenarios that may have caused the subject damage.

As stated by Isuzu you now have to wait for the Govt Agency/s to get their act into gear so to speak.

Just as an aside. I have had a JEEP Cherokee 05 CRD since new and added a Chip after approx 30,000Kms. Increased the performance exponentially, however, caused top and bottom turbo/I-cooler hoses to split and send the ECU into limp mode.

When adding that 'plug & play' chip a competitor (Ex mechanic wk shop owner) I know quite well in the 4x4 winch competition fraternity, advised me not to do so as it would result in blown turbo hoses and other issues. Doh! Doh!

After the JEEP went into limp mode (cylinder misfires) with my wife driving one day, there was serious, robust dialogue between her and myself that resulted in the subject Chip being removed for ever more. There has never been another issue with engine or anything else for that matter.

Just in case your wondering - No! I'll never 'Chip' another vehicle. Learnt my lesson and seem to have got away with it.



FollowupID: 770992

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