Frequently asked questions about FIAT Tipo 16V

What replacement radiators can be used on the 16V Tipo?

Alexis Grant says that the Tipo 1.9 TD radiator will fit to Tipo 16V quite nicely with no problems. It runs slightly colder but it's not a problem.

When is the water pump likely to fail?

Steve Lewis says that the water pump seems to be a problem on these cars at around the 50,000 miles mark.

His problems started at about 44,000 miles with a massive water leak from the nose of the pump. There was no noise at this time. With the engine idling, water was pouring out as quick as he could pour it in. In desperation he poured in a bottle of rad weld. Within 5 minutes the leak was just a trickle, and after leaving the car overnight the leak stopped altogether. Anyway, about a month later a screaming noise could be heard so he took the car to his local Fiat garage. They changed the water pump during the 45,000 service together with the cambelt, balancer shaft belt and water pump/ alternator belt. It cost about £328 with all the parts:

All the belts have to come off to change the pump so it gets a bit expensive. Steve's Brother-in-law also has a 16v and his pump is starting to get noisy now at about 55,000 miles. Annoying as he had the belts replaced at 45,000 miles.

George Roberts says that not long after he got his car the water pump went. After visiting a number of different garages their diagnosis ranged from:

Having been completely confused, he gave the AA a call and the guy who turned up (who incidentally had never seen a Sedicivalvole before) said straight away that it was the water pump. George took it to an Integrale specialist to have the work done and it cost him about £350 including:
My cars losing water but I can't see from where?

If you regularly have to add more water to the cooling system there must be a leak. If you can't see where this is then check for water in the oil and vice versa. To check for water in the oil undo the oil filler cap and if there is a white residue on the underside then it's probably the head gasket that has perished. Detecting oil in the water is more difficult as the contents of the coolant overflow tank are difficult to see. If these tests are okay then undergo a cooling system pressure test. This will show up any weak points in your cooling system such as the radiator or water pump.

How do I replace the radiator?

Remove the front grill by undoing the two screws on the front face. It will still be held in place by two plastic clips at top at the edges. You will need to release these clips using a screwdriver pressed down from the top of the grill. It should then pull forwards.

Now remove the front bumper by undoing the 6 retaining bolts. You will need a 13mm socket to do this. Two bolts are visible from where the front grill was. Two bolts are round the sides underneath and two are in the front at the bottom in the recesses Pull the bumper forwards carefully as the fog lights will still be attached. Lower the bumper down as near the car as possible and unplug the fog lights. Unclip the shielding carrying the fog light cable from the back of the bumper. The bumper can now be removed from the car and placed to one side.

Unplug the electrical leads going to the cooling fan and the fan thermometer. Then unclip this cable from the two retaining clips either side of the fan. Another electrical lead goes to the water temperature sensor fitted on the right hand side of the radiator (when viewed from the front of the car). There should be a clip holding the connector onto the sensor, make sure you release this before pulling off.

Next you need to remove the water hoses connected to the top and bottom of the radiator. These will be held of by Jubile Clips. If these are the original FIAT ones then the best way to remove them is to find the tail end and tap the link with a screwdriver towards the tail. The original FIAT clips are single fit so you will need to purchase two replacements.

To remove the radiator undo the two screws at the front of the radiator in the upper corners. The bottom of the radiator sits on a metal rail that is bolted to the front of the car next to where the bumper was attached. Undo these two bolts using a 13mm socket, being carful to hold the radiator in place whilst you undo them. The radiator can then be removed from the car be tipping the bottom of it towards you and removing it through the front of the car. This can be done even if the car has been lowered 35mm. There is no need to jack the car up.

Now the radiator has been removed from the car you can undo the six screws holding the plastic cowl to the front of the radiator using a 8mm socket. Be gental undoing these screws as they might have rusted. Remove the metal rail off the bottom of the radiator and detach the rubber grommets of the bottom of the radiator. Remove the electric fan off the back of the radiator by undoing the 3 screws using an 8mm socket. Finally remove the water temperature sensor using a 30mm spanner making sure to keep the metal washer.

Refitting is the reverse of the above. When fitting the plastic cowl back to the radiator make sure that you clip the top of it behind the raditor at the top otherwise it will flap around and not redirect the air as intended. When bolting the metal rail back onto the car use the holes nearest the radiator. It will not be obvious which is the front and which is the back. When fitted correctly the little lips at the ends of the metal bar should be at the back.

How do I replace the thermostat?

Tools required: Time required: Remove the battery this will make access easier. If the battery terminals are orginal you will need a 8mm spanner for the negative terminal and a 10mm spanner for the positive terminal. Use a 13mm socket to undo the plate on the LHS of the battery that secures the battery to the battery tray.

Open the clip containing the wires for the distibutor, cold start soleniod and the two water temperature sensors. Disconnect the connections to the cold start valve and the distrubutor.

Remove the 10mm nuts and washers holding the cold start bracket onto the side of the engine. Pull out of the way and tuck behind the back of the battery tray.

Connected to the each stud of the cold start soleniod there should have been an earth connections. Now the cold start solennoid is out of the way disconnect the red water temperature sensor connection. This is for the dashboard and simply pulls off. The blue temperature sensor connection is for the ECU and needs to be unclipped.

Disconnect all the hoses connected to the thermostat. Don't worry about trying to stop any water leaks. There should be one at the front for the top radiator connection, one below this for the oil cooler, one on the right hand side for the heater matrix, one on the top for the expansion tank, another on the top for the inlet manifold and finally one at the back for the main water system. You only need to disconnect those directly attached to the thermostat, there is no need to loosen any other clips. You won't be able to move the oil cooling pipe off the thermostat, for now just loosen it. Check the ends of the rubber hoses for and splitting, replace if necessary however there is some play in most of the pipes to allow them to be trimmed slightly if necessary. Several of the jubilee clips are a 6mm nut with a slot for a screwdriver. You will find it far easier to undo and tighten using a 6mm socket than trying to keep a screwdriver in the slot.

Remove the Remove the three 13mm nuts and washers holding the thermostat to the engine. Two are at the top and these are easy enough. The third is central underneath the unit and a pig to undo due to the small amount of turn you can apply each time. The large metal pipe is attached to this stud via a little bracket. However if the thermostat has ever been replaced there is a high chance that it was not reconnected. If this is the case the bracket will probably get in the way when you are trying to undo the nut. You might find it helps to push down on the metal pipe where it attaches to the lower radiator hose. This should move the loose bracket down and provide access to the nut. You will need to remove the oil breather hose to gain access to this lower nut. You can leave the crank breather hose in place just disconnect the breather that vents to the inlet manifold, tuck the loose end out of the way.

Once you've undone the three nuts pull the thermostat off the studs then rotate it off the still attached oil cooler hose. Clean up the remains of the gasket off the engine block.

Undo the red and blue sensors using 19mm spanners or socket.

Fitting is the opposite, don't forget to attach the earth connections when you reattach the cold start solenoid bracket.

What is the normal water temperature?

Once the engine has reached operating temperature it should be at 70 degrees That is the mark at about 11 O'clock on the temperature gauge half way between the 50 and 90 degree marks.

Go back to previous page