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97 Disco broke down


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Hi all, I have a 97 disco that failed to make it up the hill on my street today. I have noticed the car running rough for a few weeks and there is a noticible ticking sound at about 8th intervals coming from the front underside of the car. I noticed some fumes coming from the engine compartment when it began to stall and there is a smell of something burning... maybe oil.

It has very, very little gas in the tank, though that doesnt seen to affect how rough it runs and i am about 300 miles overdue for an oil change (3,000 mile oil change). The oil level smmes to be fine though and the car does not overheat.

The car will go if i step on the gas on level ground but definately has trouble when i try to make it up a hill, no matter how small. I assume this corresponds to the ammount of gas being used. Also, i removed the exhaust about a year ago and replaced it myself.. i heard a leak in there and the corresponding clicking noise may be the source of my trouble. I dont suspect the transmission as i think it shifts fine when on a level surface...

any help?



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Sure thing. Its petrol, automatic, 4.0L V8 and no modifications. The loss in power only occours when going up hill and there is total loss... as in i get stuck going slower and slower until i stop. The fumes i see are light-blueish but this only happens as the car struggles up the hill. This was not a problem yesterday.

I know my engine air filter is probably very dirty cause ive been meaning to replace it... could a clogged air filter cause this?



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Well the air filter is easy to test - take it out and go for a drive. Just don't go anywhere dusty. Can't see why a blocked air filter would cause blue smoke, though.

Blown head gasket(s) would cause loss of power - I suppose if they'd failed to the outside of the block the fumes you're seeing could be leaking exhaust gasses, but they normally fail on the inside into the valley (in which case it'll be pressurising the engine and there'll be oil leaking all over the place).

No idea about the ticking noise - Andy's suggestion of a broken rocker arm should be relatively easy to check. The rocker covers themselves are very easy to remove, but you'll probably have to remove the plenum and maybe some coolant pipes first (not sure what your engine has on top).

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