Fiat Linea T-Jet: Curious case of a check engine light & power loss

On scanning the car, two error codes popped up: P1694 and P9009 or P0009.

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Car: Linea TJet 2011 | 70K odometer reading

Last servicing: June 2023; Spark Plugs changed

Sequence of events:

  • In the morning, I saw that the coolant level was below the Minimum level mark in the reservoir, so I topped it up. Filled petrol at IOCL Petrol pump in Rekong Peo. It had rained a lot in the area during the night.
  • Around 80 KM later, on the way to Nako, the check engine light came on and the car went into the limp mode (no acceleration). I suspected that it might be due to the altitude and let the car rest for a few minutes.
  • The car started and the check engine light was not on. Around 15-20 KM later the check engine light came back and the car again went into limp mode. I got worried and called a known mechanic. He said it might be due to a failing fuel pump and told me that I can continue driving.
  • Next day on my way to Kaza, the same saga continues. The frequency of check engine light coming on increased and it came more often when the car was going uphill. Every time, the check engine light came up, I had to restart the car and continue driving. Another thing which I observed was that the car temperature guage was reaching the middle level mark faster than usual and was not dropping down even a mm, which used to happen before.
  • Saw that the coolant level was about an inch more that the max level and thought that it might be the reason. Anyways, somehow with prayers on my lips, the car reached Kaza. I straight away took it to a local mechanic, who had an OBD scanner. But the scanner failed to read any error.
  • Next day, I refueled the car at IOC Kaza. Since XP95 was the only option available at the pump, I went ahead with it. Parked the car back at the hotel and took a taxi for visiting nearby areas.
  • Next morning, I decided to rule out air in the coolant system. So, armed with Google knowledge, I started the car and let it run for 15-20 minutes with heater on and reservoir cap off, to let any trapped air in the cooling system escape. Nothing happened, except for a few tiny bubbled appearing in the reservoir fluid on pressing the accelerator after I had tightened the reservoir cap. Disappointed with my effort and lost in my thoughts, I removed the reservoir cap and hot boiling and bubbling coolant came gushing out. I scolded my self for making the situation worse. Now I was low on coolant. I called the mechanic again and explained him the situation. He told me to top it up with water. Since OAT coolant was not available in Kaza, I added bottled water. The reservoir took around 600 ml of mineral water (distilled was not available).
  • Somehow, with God’s grace, the car brought us safely from Kaza to Noida, a journey of 700+ km in 3 days. Surprisingly, the check engine light never came back. And the temperature guage also didn’t seem to keen to constantly stay near the mid level mark. At times it even dipped to the the quarter level mark, which again got me worried.
  • The car has barely run 150+ km after coming back from Spiti. At times, the car feels sluggish and doesn’t respond to accelerator inputs, the way it used to do. I suspect that the fuel economy has also dipped by 0.5 – 1 kmpl.
  • Last Saturday, I took it to a FNG in Noida which has an advanced scanner. The mechanic, after listening to my saga about the check engine light, told me to not to worry and continue driving. Upon insisting, he scanned the car and two error codes popped up: P1694 and P9009 or P0009. He asked whether I had driven in water, to which I said no. He then said that these are not permanent codes and that there is nothing to worry. I asked him to scan for live data as well, to which he said that there is no need. I should have told him about the drop in car’s pickup.
  • Not satisfied with the mechanic’s response, I tried to use Google to narrow down the reason for the entire check engine light episode and the drop in performance. The three main culprits right now seem to be Failing Fuel Pump, Crankshaft sensor and Turbo.
  • All these three are very distinct, leaving me super confused. I don’t know any other FNG in Noida which can find the root cause of the issues without taking me for a ride. So, I as a last resort I am reaching out to fellow Fiat owners, hoping someone might be able to point out the root cause or how to figure out the root cause.

Thanks in advance.

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