When this car couldn’t stop me from driving it, by way of ignition, steering rack, exhaust, suspension, brake, electrical, coolant, or head gasket problems, it turned to fire!
Replaced the head gasket maybe 3-400 miles ago, and all seemed fairly good. Started it on a cool (43 degrees) morning recently and–atypically–listened to it idle (a little unevenly) for maybe 30-45 seconds. Backed out of the driveway, then maybe 20’ later heard or felt a faint ‘whoomp’. A few seconds later saw smoke coming out of the rear of the bonnet. A few seconds later smoke was very black. Opened hood to find a line of flames a good 8" tall, running most of the length of the intake manifold. Closed the hood and ran a couple hundred feet to get the fire extinguisher from home. Put out fire.
Lesson I learned: Not a bad idea to have a fire extinguisher in any old vehicle. Very bad idea to not have one in a FI older Jag!
I’m still not sure how the fire started, but I think it highly likely it was fuel related, and kept burning as the pressurized fuel kept spurting. Don’t really understand how it started so quickly, as the engine couldn’t have been very hot, especially the intake side? Web searches found a few references to these later cars being ‘prone’ to fires but no real documention of such. Archives have almost nothing, that I could find. Any truth to these ‘rumors’?
I had replaced several of the fuel injector hoses, fuel pressure regulator hose, etc., but hadn’t yet done the rear injector hoses. My guess is either one of those cracked, or a new one I put on came off. Afterwards the hose was off the pressure reg. but it was such a gooey mess I don’t know whether it was cause or effect.
Will need pretty much all wiring on that side of the engine, from about the throttle body to the radiator. David has fixed me up with most of the destroyed parts I need, and I’m hopeful I’ll either be able to source a harness he didn’t have, or possibly make it myself? The front 2 injectors look pretty bad and will be replaced. Am thinking I ought to check the other 4 prior to reinstalling them–with new hose.
On the brighter side, newly rebuilt head still looks good.
The archives and FAQ will answer many queries on the XJ series…
To remove yourself from this list, go to http://www.jag-lovers.org/cgi-bin/majordomo.
// please trim quoted text to context only