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{FS/WTB} looking for a solution, I need your opinions on this idea..

Old 09-08-2010, 10:39 PM
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SC looking for a solution, I need your opinions on this idea..

I have an 04 RX8. I bought this car with 37,000 miles, its gray and loaded with bells and whistles (except navigation). The car now has 120,000 miles on the odemeter. About a year ago I started having the "warm start " issue and I'm told I need a new engine due to compression, just like alot of others on this forum. I owe 2 more yrs on this car . Mazda put seals -among other things- on these cars that can't handle the heat and now alot of us are screwed. I babied this car and loved it. I called my local dealership and a Tech told me all I could expect to get out of this car was 100,000 miles anyway. Since I can't sell a car that I don't have a title to, here is my Idea : I want to part this car out down to the mirrors. I want to sell every little part of this albatross thats been sitting in my driveway . So I need your help (opinions) if you think I could get any substantial monetary gain to go towards paying this car off. Your thoughts?
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Old 09-08-2010, 10:43 PM
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what mods does it have? any pics?
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Old 09-08-2010, 10:44 PM
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If you sell parts, you got a buyer here!!... I heard that getting a engine will be around 4000 but I'm not sure, I think it depents on how much you love your rx8 and how much is your budget!
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Old 09-09-2010, 05:50 AM
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My RX8 is completely stock. No mods. I'm not sure how to post a pic on this thread. Any suggestions?
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Old 09-09-2010, 06:15 AM
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Back up one step... A few basic questions

Have you checked your compression or are you making an assumption?
Have you performed a decarboning service?
Maintenance history? Oil used. Driving style?

Even if you need an engine we have vendors here who can help you with large savings vs. Mazda
You likely have local members who can also help you

Last edited by DarkBrew; 09-09-2010 at 06:20 AM.
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Old 09-10-2010, 04:52 AM
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Thanks DarkBrew,
I've had 3 mechanics (2 mazda, 1 rotor head) tell me the issue was compression before I could even complete my sentence when I was describing the problem. My local Mazda dealer did a diagnostic test and told me if it wasnt the fuel pump , then compression was the likely culprit. I know Mazda isn't known for being rotor smart so I asked an outside guy who eats, sleeps ,and breaths rotor engines. the first thing outa his mouth, "top apex seal cracked" . I haven't had a decarbonating test done, not sure what that is exactly. Oil has never been a problem, I take it to the local "jiffy lube" and get it changed regularly atleast before I parked it. My driving style is not speed demon but not granny either. I rev the engine to make sure the carbon doesn't build but I've only redlined it maybe 5 times since I've owned the car. The problem with a new engine is this: If I get a new engine, if it comes out of an '04 , won't I have the same problems? I contacted Mazda twice via email and no one wants to help. I honestly don't know what to do. All I know is I'm paying alot of money for a beautiful car that is sitting in my driveway because I don't feel its trustworthy and I'm stuck.
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Old 09-10-2010, 06:17 AM
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You really need to get a proper rotary compression test done
The result is a reading per rotor face @ specific RPM.

The decarboning is a DIY if you want to try it. Short story is that carbon restricts the movement of the apex, side and corner seals and can cause compression issues. Using seafoam treatment removes the carbon and may restore compression.

Ignition system can also cause the same issues. Have you changed coils, plugs and wires recently?
I even saw a "soft start" issue caused by loose spark plugs!

The guesses you've received so far are a disservice. Get some real data, search for similar symptoms and work your way through the issue.
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Old 09-10-2010, 06:53 AM
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Clank, you wouldn't be the first owner with an over-100k engine that thought it was failing, trying to figure out some way to unload it....and most of those ended up not having a failing engine anyway.

Warm start issues can still be ignition or starter. Anyone who thinks that they can immediately diagnose that precisely (which one is considered "top" apex seal anyway...they are all in that position at one time or another), I would be suspect of. Especially if they are willing to diagnose without actually getting a compression test done. Especially if they think that every RX-8 engine fails at 100,000 miles.

If you didn't even know what a decarb is, then likely your 8 is badly in need of one.

From my new owner thread: https://www.rx8club.com/new-member-forum-197/new-potential-owners-start-here-202454/
Originally Posted by RIWWP View Post
The engine failure story:
Most of the engine failures were on 2004s with automatic transmissions. The 2004s in general had more issues due to the flash not adding enough oil and a few other things off the boat, and the automatics being 4-port and usually driven much more casually compounded the problem.

Compounding THAT was the original reman facility for the engine replacements did not have very good quality control, and alot of those original reman engines had improper seal clearances and other build issues that caused quite a few people to get to their 3rd or 4th engines.

MSP-16 updated the flash and improved things greatly, and happened early 2005. Mazda North America can tell you if MSP-16 was performed for any 2004 or 2005 if you give them the VIN. they also re-vamped their reman facility, and reman engines 2006+ are now usually far better than the original factory ones. So if you find a 2004, 2005, or 2006 with an engine replacement that occured late 2006 or later, don't take the engine replacement as a negative mark against the vehicle, but a positive one, as it means the engine is likely in fantastic shape, and good for quite a long time.

Plenty of 2004s were still perfectly fine.

2005s have a much reduced failure rate, 2006 further, 2007 and 2008 are relatively rare.

In 2009 they introduced further engine changes correcting several things, the most critical of which was an increase in oil pressure to RX-7 ranges (they dropped it for the 2004-2008 years for some reason), and re-introducing the center oil injector (they deleted it for the 2004-2008 RX-8s for some reason, all prior rotories had it).

I have not heard of a 2009+ engine failing yet. That doesn't mean that they won't though.

A compression test should be standard before anyone buys an 8 though, just to be on the safe side. Most dealers charge $80 to $120 to do a compression test.

General issues to keep in mind:
Most problems that crop up in the 8 start very small and get serious because they aren't addressed. For example coils start going bad, plugs then start getting fouled from excess unburnt fuel, unburnt fuel rapidly degrades cat life, clogged cat can over stress the seals and over cook the O2 sensors, localize heat too much which accelerates oil breakdown and increases engine wear...

Most of the owners that remain trouble free are trouble free because they keep on top of their oil changes, their oil level, and their ignition health.

Then again, that stuff is like taking cholesterol medication and regular exercise for your heart. They help prevent problems, but it doesn't eliminate risk and it doesn't mean that you still won't die of a heart attack. Mazda factory QC over the engine tolerances has improved quite a bit, but it is entirely possible to be sitting on an engine waiting for any chance it can to fail. It's also entirely possible to completely ignore all the recommendations and get 160,000+ miles out of the engine (one owner came on here thinking her engine was blown, come to find out it was just badly flooded, but she didn't know anything about rotaries and still had it healthy at 160,000 without doing what she should have)

It very is much like a heart, or lungs, or whatnot. All you can do is reduce the risk of failure.

Cooling and Lubrication are 99% of the battle to keep these engines healthy. Mazda didn't have enough of either from the factory, a flaw that puts us behind the curve. Several mods that are common can go a long way towards improving engine live. Namely the ReMedy water pump and thermostat, BHR ignition upgrade, COBB AccessPORT (for the part that allows you to monitor temps and set a lower threshhold for the radiator fans). Even removing the cat and going with a midpipe helps I think, as it helps keep heat away from the engine, and you don't have to worry about a clogged cat causing more problems. My engine was perfect until my cat failed, and it's never been right since. In spec, not replaceable point, but not back to the above average that it was. If you have a 2009 or newer, you have a Series2, along with the improvements to the engine that should mostly solve the lubrication problems. They still need better cooling.

But you also have the warranty. 100,000 miles, 8 years for the engine core. (if you are in that and outside powertrain, a "free engine" will still cost you ~$500 for all the fluids, gaskets, etc... associated with the engine, but not part of it)



We aren't telling you that your engine isn't failing. We are telling you that there are possibilities that it could be other than loss of compression that haven't been ruled out yet, and the critical test to determine if you are or are not losing compression hasn't been performed.


If it does come down to engine replacement, it depends on where and how you get the engine, and whether or not you will have the "same" problems with it. Most of the 2004 engine issues were from inferior flash on the ECU that didn't inject enough oil. So unless you find an engine that has not been rebuilt since 2004/2005, you shouldn't worry too much about it. Getting your engine rebuilt is an option that is cheaper than you might think. A basic low cost rebuilt can be as cheap as ~$1200, having someone else do it. $500 or so if you do it. Not impossible, it's a simple engine, just have to be careful with the little bits, and seek advice from the vendors here (Who are more than willing to discuss it with you) as you go through on what needs to be replaced and what doesn't.

So you have options, but you really need to determine if you are actually losing your engine or not FIRST
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