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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-01-2019, 05:02 AM Thread Starter
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New owner

Hello! Just bought my 05 Elise after wanting one for the last 15 years! First day drove it 7 hours back home. Now I have a squeeky belt. But love the car!

If anyone has any maintenance tips please share!
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-01-2019, 05:08 AM Thread Starter
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Finally got one

After 15 years of waiting, I finally got the car that caught my attention sitting in a study hall in high school. Drove 7 hours to look at it. Bought it and drove 7 hours back. Now, I have a squeeky belt on decel above 3k. But ordered a new belt and hope to have that fixed this weekend!

If anyone has any maintenance tips please share!
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-02-2019, 05:45 PM
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Congratulations on the new car and welcome to the club!
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-02-2019, 08:10 PM
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Welcome, and Congrats...

My tips currently as it stands:
Oil filter (I love the Purolator Gold or Boss line) for the price and performance it can't be beat personally speaking. My local stores sells them for $6.99 each.
Oil: Chevrons Delo 5w-40 full synthetic line...amazing stuff, I have found the car runs the smoothest and quietest on it...far better than Mobil One personally speaking.
Buy tires that you will love...look for 200 treadwear pattern tires only, makes a HUGE difference on the level of enjoyment on the car.
Make sure vehicle is properly at temp before hitting the 2nd cam.
Drive the car, as it is a blast to drive.
For wax...I love Meguiar's full Synthetic wax...lasts about 6 months, and the car looks amazing. Takes a little work to properly buff it out right.
And if you choose to do upgrades:
1) Penske Suspension
2) BWR Sway Bar
3) AutoX as much as you can to learn the car.

Last but not least...have fun.

2005 Lotus Elise Graphite Grey - Salvaged title started the SSM build!!!
Maverick ML8 - Other daily
2005 VW Passat Station Wagon TDI (harder to find than the lotus?)
2005 Lotus Elise Starlight Black - Sold
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 06:45 AM
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Congrats and good for you!


Note to new Elise & Exige Owners:


1. These cars have large (i.e. dangerous) blind spots. Multivex mirrors are NLA, but RLS (Really Light Stuff) offers very good tape-on replacements.


2. The horns are way too weak (quiet). There’s an inverse relationship: smaller the car, louder the horn needs to be.

Get something such as a Stebel Nautilus.

Stock: “Excuse me”


Stebel: “HONK! LOOK OUT!”

Remove the stock horn; replace with louder.

(I drive with my finger on the horn button in any traffic. Iffy situations, my headlights are on.

Stay to the left of traffic, i.e. avoid passing on the right if you can.

Stop way behind trucks, SUVs, etc. Some have blindspots >50’. )


3. The early cars came with misaimed and dim headlights. If you drive at night, convert to HIDs. While better than stock halogen bulbs are available, HIDs throw more light. Stay around 5000k.


4. Ensure your car has had the work required by the recall for oil line fittings done. You could lose an engine and/or spin in your own oil.

5. The best transmission lube I’ve found is Redline MT-90 plus a little Power Punch Extreme Gear Oil Additive. (Note that it takes two changes to get rid of the previous lube.)

a) Early cars have wobbly shift towers. Look up Stan’s Mod (bolt and spacer; http://www.billswebspace.com/ShifterReinforcement.pdf) and

And, use:
Re-Enforcer long thru bolts that terminate under car and tie down the tower:
https://www.inokinetic.com/lotus/re-...y=Transmission

These (lube, mods) make a huge change in shifting.


6. As per some engine builders on these sites, wait AT LEAST 20 minutes after coolant has reached full operating temp before engaging cam switchover.

For street cars, consider removing one or both oil coolers. Some cover them.


7. Rear toe-links can loosen and break with disastrous results. You can check tq periodically, or use Nordlock washers. Best is conversion to better engineered brace, such as BOE’s InoKinetic’s for two examples.


8. While under the car with panel off, look around for hoses and wires chafing their way to failure. That’s how this was found:
https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f311...-u-tube-47232/

9. The stock radiators are prone to leaking where the end caps meet the metal part. Keep an eye on this. Most of us use single-pass all-aluminum radiators.

10. When your wheel well liner comes loose, skip the lame plastic rivet and use Well-Nuts instead.

11. Life will be better if you disable the auto-arming alarm function on the earlier cars. You won’t have to press a button to start the car. Instructions:

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f320...ramming-70940/


12. These cars cannot be left off a Battery Tender for weeks at a time. Unless dead batteries are a particular joy of yours. Buy one right away. There are numerous threads here about which ppl use and like.


13, Some on this site are a bit obsessed with hockey pucks for lifting the car. Don’t use these. Too hard and slippery, generally, and too small a surface area. Use a piece of wood, as your hero does.

14. Visit the Uber Thread

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f3/e...ow-here-25131/

15. Most parts on the car are made by Toyota and others, so buying things like a/c compressors, engine parts, etc. is wildly expensive when purchased thru Lotus.
Toyota dealers, auto parts stores are way less expensive.

16. The soft high-grip tires on most of our cars lose much of that grip when temperatures drop below 50 F. I know of too many ppl who spun their cars when not remembering this. I use hi-performance all-seasons.

Note that many summer tires cannot even be stored in temps below 20 F.

-----

Plus, “How to bleed brakes”:

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f101...brakes-241138/


How to Search:

For future reference: Don't use the search on this site. Simply use Google and end the search text with "site:lotustalk.com". E.g.
Transmission Fluid change what bolt site:lotustalk.com no space betw site:lotustalk.com

05 elise (BOE Rev300 supercharged, SSRs, shift tower mods, Multivex; HID hi/low beams); 05 Corolla XRS. Past '72 Elan Sprint (I restored), Lotus 7 w/X-flow, TT Supra, Bugeye Sprite, BMW 2002 & 2002tii, '65 GTO.

Driving Tips-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...art-1-a-49665/
Moss Emergency Line-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...cy-line-36631/
Bleeding Brakes- https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...-brakes-241138
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 06:59 AM
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This is my recommended do list after 10 years of Lotus addiction:

*Oil lines recall, completed, or installed upgraded oil lines

*Upgrade the rear toe links, this is literally the most dangerous defect with our cars.

*When you lock the car, only lock it with the door key, do not use the remote. The electronic module that controls the remote locking mechanism will fail and you will be locked out of your car. This happened in my Elise and I had to damage the side window to remove the soft top of the car :/

*Stock OEM radiator is plastic, you must replace it with an aluminum radiator.

*Use tires that have a very sticky grip, such as the R888- the car needs sticky tires due to the low weight of the car. Replace as needed. Make sure the car has a perfect alignment, car is very sensitive to alignment settings.


*One annoying defect is the resistor pack failure for the AC fan controls, this is due to the car having a defect where water sits at the bottom of the blower fan with no exit, this can be corrected by drilling a few holes to let the water out. If this resistor pack fails, it is a huge pain to replace, everything in front of the car has to come off.

*Upgrade the oil pan to a baffled pan. The OEM oil pan is a complete joke. Use only redline oil. If you don't have a catalyst, use redline racing grade oil...the stuff is the best of the best.

***here's one tip that most people on this forum don't talk about...
PRIME THE OIL!!!! If your car sits for a while without running, prime the oil! This is done by removing the fuel pump fuse in the rear of the car...press the ignition button for 30 seconds, this will run the engine starter and prime the oil...lubricating the engine before it runs. After 30 seconds of priming, remove the key, insert fuel pump fuse, and the start the car as you normally would. This will save lots of tear and wear to the engine.

*Don't forget to change your transmission fluid too! Red line as well...

*Also, installing a rear view camera will be most helpful as well. Remember...it is nearly impossible to get an OEM clam now, do everything you can to protect the clams.

Best of luck and take care of your Elise!

-Kubera
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 08:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubera View Post
***here's one tip that most people on this forum don't talk about...
PRIME THE OIL!!!! If your car sits for a while without running, prime the oil! This is done by removing the fuel pump fuse in the rear of the car...press the ignition button for 30 seconds, this will run the engine starter and prime the oil...lubricating the engine before it runs. After 30 seconds of priming, remove the key, insert fuel pump fuse, and the start the car as you normally would. This will save lots of tear and wear to the engine.
After the big (2 1/2 months) sleep I did have a little rod-knock from the engine on startup. I do this on all my other cars, but didn't know the easy way to do it on an Elige. Thanks.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 08:08 AM
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Congrats! I like the calipers.

** save ~10 lbs gain 1 hp ** EQ: Y=(190*X) / (1984-X) where Y is (HP) and X is (lbs)

'07 Lotus Exige S310


WTC 2
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 08:28 AM
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And yup, I 2nd everything stated above...except oil. I am not a redline fan, so on that note, to each his own. 🙂

2005 Lotus Elise Graphite Grey - Salvaged title started the SSM build!!!
Maverick ML8 - Other daily
2005 VW Passat Station Wagon TDI (harder to find than the lotus?)
2005 Lotus Elise Starlight Black - Sold
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by steelypip View Post
After the big (2 1/2 months) sleep I did have a little rod-knock from the engine on startup. I do this on all my other cars, but didn't know the easy way to do it on an Elige. Thanks.
@Steely tip, @Giantmcm

It's fairly easy.

1) Remove fuel pump fuse in the rear, close to the ECU. Look at the fuse # in your owner's manual.

2) Press the power on button for 3x 10 second durations. (Make sure your battery is fully charged)

3) Insert fuel pump fuse again, start car normally. Now your engine is primed with oil.

*as for the oil, to each his own. My experience is from 10+ years of racing...no engine failures with upgraded oil pump.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 11:37 AM
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Welcome! Nice color
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Roland Sitler View Post
Hello! Just bought my 05 Elise after wanting one for the last 15 years! First day drove it 7 hours back home. Now I have a squeeky belt. But love the car!

If anyone has any maintenance tips please share!
I'm glad you finally got your Elise! I was in the same boat as you years ago. I wanted one so bad it drove me nuts. I first seen a black Elise at a college dorm back in 2006. Then a yellow Elise at leaving a burger king a year later. I just thought they were the coolest looking cars around. I did not realize they were somewhat attainable back then. Then I made the mistake of test driving a few of them back in 2008 and I was hooked. Unfortunately, I could never afford one so I had to settle for other sports cars. I finally flew out to AZ and picked mine up Oct. 2015 and drove about 7 hours back home like you. Would love to hear more of your story if you want to share. Anyways, Congrats!!!

Do you plan to do your own maintenance?

Currently:
2005 Lotus Elise
2015 Audi A3 Wife's car
2012 Toyota Prius C Daily Commuter
Sold:
2006 Pontiac Solstice
2003 350z Touring
2006 Eclipse GT

Last edited by Crazy05; 05-03-2019 at 12:02 PM.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 11:57 AM
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Welcome! Beautiful car.

Where are you at? I don't know why people don't list where they live. It makes it easier for people to see if you are close by and maybe get together for a drive or helping wrench.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-04-2019, 05:38 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you everyone for your insight and warm welcomes. I do plan on doing most all the work myself unless I dont have the tools. Thankfully the owner before me took great care of the car so I am confident in its nature but I plan on making sure all recalls are taken care of. This is by far the best welcome I've ever had from any forum.
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