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Hair Bear

Range Rover advice please

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I have just acquired a 1995 2.5 diesel P38 Range Rover. It appears to be in fairly good original condition but has been standing for several years. Put a battery on it and it started as if it'd only been left overnight, runs, drives, starts and stops as it should, air suspension all ok, interior is ok, so far, so good.

Known faults are a sticky switch in a seatbelt latch which brings up the SRS light on the dash, the air-con control panel is iffy, and the motor that engages low range has seized.

None of this is insurmountable, but as I'm working on an almost non existant budget are there any pitfalls to look out for before I start wasting too much time on it? Are there any known rot points or specific items that would suggest it is beyond repair? I've not owned anything from Solihull before, or any other 4x4 for that matter, it was a bit of an unplanned addition and I'm now looking at it and wavering between 'what have I done' and 'where do I start'!

I think my plan of attack will be to give it a thorough clean, evict countless multi legged squatters, chuck it in for an mot, see what it fails on, and go from there.

If all goes well and it can be brought back to life I don't expect it to be on the road before next summer, can anyone recommend a cheap insurer for something like this, maybe a limited mileage or occasional use policy or something of that type?

All input appreciated...

Rob.

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We have a '98 P38. Nice motor but... It drains the battery every couple of days - something is waking up the BECM on a regular basis and that draws about 40A every time. Make sure all the electronics are working correctly. If you have to jump start it ALWAYS turn the lights on before connecting the leads, never connect the -ve lead direct to the battery, use a good earthing point on the vehicle. Ours is a 4.6 V8 so I sue the alternator top mount to clip the black lead to. If you don;t do this you risk spiking the BECM which is EXPENSIVE to rectify. Luckily there are a couple of places that can reprogram them but you are looking at an £800 bill. Do not ask how I know this.

 

Rot wise - check the wheel arches, door bottoms, lower tailgate and anywhere that can get stone chips. Check the steel cables that support the lower tail gate.

 

You say the HVAC panel is iffy - what do you mean there?

 

If you re worried about what might be hidden under the scene so to speak talk to your nearest independent LR specialist and have them hook their diag computer up and see what's revealed. There are a couple of good spares suppliers on eBay - good quality used parts - that I've used a few times. If you want I can give you the seller ID's. And you might want to consider joining the Range Rover Register - a good soure of technical knowledge and help.

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I had a 4.6 for about 7 years and loved it.

A couple of niggles. some electrical items such as wipers and Windows started to behave oddly, but after checking on the inter web I found advice to check all the earth bonding from engine to chassis etc. I went around cleaning connections and it cured it! Also had the suppension collapse after an exhaust leak melted a pipe above the rear suspension.

Other than that it was pretty reliable.

They can get expensive if the electronics start to give up....

 

Good luck with it.

Iain

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The sir suspesion self stabalises when siting, that does drain battery.

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Look online with Land Rover Monthly or Land Rover owners magazine, they have been looking at them, in fact I think some of the pages are on repairs to them and give a cost

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Posted (edited)

You Can get the manuals free on line its called Rave just search and follow the instructions.

 

The srs light is a mot fail.

You may be lucky and be just clear the codes and reset.

It does not have a seat belt switch it has 2 crash sensors in the front wings big yellow boxes behind the head lights.

The SRS computer is under the centre console between the seats.

My light kept coming on it was the computer 99 pence on Ebay.

The brake line which runs from the front right wheel arch to the rear axle is steel and rots. It runs along the top of the chassis and rots by the rear airbag mount. you cant see it very easily mine failed and I changed it to kunifer.

I generally use the internet for parts Britpart used to have a really bad reputation but thy have upped their game and parts are 50 to 70 % less than genuine it makes the car affordable.

 

You cannot use generic Fault code readers they must be landrover/p38 specific.

 

blackbox soloutions https://blackbox-solutions.com/ is an example

http://www.lynx-diagnostics.com/land-rover-coverage/rr-p38/ is another

 

Rangerovers.net

 

https://www.landyzone.co.uk/

 

are good forums. landyzone is not for the faint hearted they can be quite brutal.

 

I love my rangy.

Edited by lowfat

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Thanks one and all for your comments. I'm glad you generally seem to like them. Loads of things to look at and consider before doing anything else, I think this could be an interesting if steep learning curve as I'm more used to working with old tractors that are 'pre-battery'.

One thing I was told about this one is, as has been mentioned already, that the battery goes flat quickly. This one has the BMW engine, and from what I've seen so far is the battery space doesn't look very big for what it maybe expected to do. From what I can tell the suspension has 3 settings - up-down-normal - so parking it right up or right down, would that stop it self leveling when parked?

The hvac display lights up but apparently doesn't do much controlling. A new one was included with the following instructions 'Good luck changing that!'. Hohum.

I'll post some pics once I've scraped all the greenery off it.

Thanks again, Rob.

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Airbags are fiddly but not difficult to fix remove the liner from rear arches and there is just enough room between body and chassis to pull out the rtretaining pin, but if it's ben in a while may ned some scientific brute force. Compressor contry to many tails can be repaired, mostly a bearing failure, and they are easyily available. The distribution block seal kit is also available, but that is one hell of a tedious job. Anyone know where I can get a P38 fault reader? I changed the tank pump on mine and it is now refusing to deliver fuel through the injectors.

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This is a good place for most things Range Rover in general and P38 in particular Tony:

 

https://p38spares.com/en/diagnostic-tools-ecu-s/6982-hawkeye-on-board-diagnostic-fault-reader-and-reset-tool-all-land-rover-and-range-rover-models-with-obd-diagnostics.html

 

Diag code readers aren't cheap though - this one is £355. Better off getting an independent specialist who has one to pull the codes for you.

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Thanks Neil, problem is, if engine won't start, how do you get the thing somewhere to read the codes? :mad:

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Trouble is, I only went out to buy some eggs, wifey hasn't seen it yet...

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=128814&stc=1

 

Had a bash along the door bottoms and they are good. Now I can't get the boot open. It opened top and bottom ok last week but the button was stiff. I didn't notice when I closed it that it didn't pop out so now there isn't much to push. So another little job to do before I dare to take it home and face the music.

Going slightly off topic, I do know a fair bit of this one's history so I'm quite confident it's never had red in it. So the question is, if you were to buy an off farm (or any second hand diesel) vehicle, how can you be sure it's not had red in it? If there's a risk that it has, how do you get any trace of red out of it? Last time I was pulled up and checked they didn't want to dip the tank, they sampled the bleed screw on the injector pump.

Photo0553.jpg

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think you bought a pup fella

 

No it was working just fine. It's in nice nick and I want it back! :angry

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When BMW were running the L/Rover group they started to introduce technology and reliability a concept that was not really recognized at the plant. These vehicles were the initial leaders and there were some problems the third diffs were a problem area at one time. If I remember rightly the computer brain is in the drivers door. For its age it looks tidy. Eggs will only give you one meal, that will give for a long time. Pleasure or exasperation is in the future, Good luck, If it was not for pups we would not have Guard dogs

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Sneaked off yesterday afternoon to have a faff about with it. Found some rust on the osr wheel arch by the bottom of the door, rear valence has detached behind the wheels both sides, and a broken tailgate strap. Spent a while playing a game of 'dashboard says',so bit by bit went though and...

reverse light bulb

fog light bulb

bonnet open switch

washer level

So having got rid of all that I'm down to two messages and two lights. I have an ABS light on when started but goes out as you move off, and the SRS light. The messages are Air Bag Fault and drivers window not set.

Air bag and SRS are I guess the same fault.

Are the headlight wash/wipe part of the mot?

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Sneaked off yesterday afternoon to have a faff about with it. Found some rust on the osr wheel arch by the bottom of the door, rear valence has detached behind the wheels both sides, and a broken tailgate strap. Spent a while playing a game of 'dashboard says',so bit by bit went though and...

reverse light bulb

fog light bulb

bonnet open switch

washer level

So having got rid of all that I'm down to two messages and two lights. I have an ABS light on when started but goes out as you move off, and the SRS light. The messages are Air Bag Fault and drivers window not set.

Air bag and SRS are I guess the same fault.

Are the headlight wash/wipe part of the mot?

 

ABS will stay on till you reach 15mph. Driver's window not set, there is a procedure in hand book for clearing that Air Bag and SRS lights check wiring under seats, known fault on Range Rover and Discovery, often when the passenger seat is moved after being set for a while. Headlight wash wipe, not unless MOT inspector thinks your from Ministry, though if fitted they should work.

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As I said earlier. Your srs is earlier. There are no connections to seat belts or seats for that matter.

you have 2 crash switches behind the headlights and a computer between the seats. Please get the free manuals it will help .the srs harness has resistors at various points which the computer regularly checks.If the resistance is out of toleryyou get the light. Get the codes read and go from there.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks guys. I'll have to find someone local who is willing to come and read the codes as it's not on the road. Still, I'm not in any great hurry and I still need to give it a thorough clean before I dare to ask anyone to look at it.

Probably won't get back to it for a week or so but I'll update you when I do.

Rob.

 

Edited to add... Lowfat it correct, this is the yellow box behind the lights variety.

Edited by Hair Bear

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Thanks Neil, problem is, if engine won't start, how do you get the thing somewhere to read the codes? :mad:

 

Most will come out in this case Tony. Takes about 10 minutes to set up and read so figure on a half hours bill.

 

Sneaked off yesterday afternoon to have a faff about with it. Found some rust on the osr wheel arch by the bottom of the door, rear valence has detached behind the wheels both sides, and a broken tailgate strap. Spent a while playing a game of 'dashboard says',so bit by bit went though and...

reverse light bulb

fog light bulb

bonnet open switch

washer level

So having got rid of all that I'm down to two messages and two lights. I have an ABS light on when started but goes out as you move off, and the SRS light. The messages are Air Bag Fault and drivers window not set.

Air bag and SRS are I guess the same fault.

Are the headlight wash/wipe part of the mot?

 

* Light bulbs - change the bulbs - they might be blown or the wrong resistance

* Bonnet open - lift the bonnet and let it drop from about a foot up. If you lower it down all the way to close it and then press it shut this happens constantly.

* Washer level - if there is a full reservoir the sender needs changing.

* ABS Light - mine goes out as soon as the vehicle starts to move. Had to go to the MoT station this year with the official owners hand book to prove this to the tester who wanted to fail it for the light not going out whilst sitting still.

* SRS/AirBag - follow Lowfat's advice on this one.

* Drivers window not set - start the car, lower the drivers window all the way down then immediately raise all the way up. Dash should then beep and display the message "Drivers Window Set".

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Not made a lot of progress apart from aquiring a RAVE manual on disc and learning that there's a lot to learn!:wow:

I have found somewhere local that will read the codes for £25 +vat, didn't think that was bad. Now, remembering I have no real clue about this sort of thing, how does it work? If I take it to have the codes read and there is a fault found, once I've changed the offending part do I have to go back and have the fault cleared for another fee or will it clear itself?

Sorry if this is basic stuff but this is all black magic to me.

On the up side, took wifey for a spin around the fields and got a cautious approval - phew!:red:

All on hold now until I get it trailered home and get stuck into it.

Thanks for all the help.

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the airbag srs system will NOT self clear unfortunately. Get the codes read and cleared see what comes back.

Make sure you have a good battery on and its fully charged.

Where abouts are you I have P38 Nano com im in Cornwall.

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Thanks for the offer but I'm in Aldershot so at least 3 hours away.

It'll have to take a back seat for a while but I'm sure it won't be long before I have more daft questions.

Again, thanks everyone.

Rob.

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