Boring Daily Build

2003 Mazda Protege5
So I just bought back my 03 P5 after selling it last year and I plan on fixing it up and making it a nice daily. Some backstory, my family purchased it in 2012 from the dealer as my sister's first car with 130k I believe. When she moved onto another car I started driving it every once in a while but when it started giving me problems last January I sold it. As my mechanical knowledge grew I regretted selling it and so a couple of weeks ago I contacted the new owner and said I'd be interested in buying it if he ever decided to sell it. He told me that he had let someone drive it and they slid into a curb. He assumed there was frame damage and planned on scraping it, so I went to look at it and saw a very badly bent control arm but the unibody looked straight. So I bought it back and here we are. It has a very long service history, always serviced at the dealer up until we bought it in 2012. However it has burned oil and smoked out the exhaust since we bought it in 2012. I've got parts coming that should be here Thursday. I ordered inner and outer tie rod ends for the drivers side, drivers side control arm, spark plugs, exhaust gasket, and sway bar link. There's the lengthy introduction now I'll post some pictures.
2003 Mazda Protege5

The reason I'm doing google photos is because I guess you can't upload more than one picture at a time on here?


Always nice to see a new build start up...Good luck! Looking forward to seeing your progress.

As for pics, would our new “Media” feature help? You can create albums and embed them etc...Here it is...

2003 Mazda Protege5
To Do List:
Fix damaged suspension components
Replace exhaust gasket
Change oil
Clean IAC
Clean EGR
Fix source(s) of CEL
Locate oil leak
Compression test
Clean piston rings via BG Engine cleaner
Compression test after engine cleaner
Replace spark plugs
Paint any rust
Paint paint chips
Polish entire car
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2x 2001 SP20 323's
Yay a new P5 build! It was getting lonely in here lol

Sounds like you've got your work cut out for you, should be a good project!

Any plans to upgrade stuff or are you planning to keep it factory for now?
2003 Mazda Protege5
I just glanced through your thread earlier, good stuff.

I’d definitely like to do some performance upgrades but I’m not sure the benefits will outweigh the cost. Currently I’m trying to make a cheap daily out of it, hence why I only bought the suspension parts for one side lol.
2003 Mazda Protege5
Also, I have to improve the headlights, I remember driving around at night and man are those things terrible. Maybe just led bulbs. Idk if there's a common fix like an upgraded headlight harness?

Parts should be here tomorrow then I need to recruit a friend to come over and the weather to cooperate.
2003 Mazda Protege5
I found the pictures from when I did the valve cover gasket in 9/18. How's everything look?
2003 Mazda Protege5
Here’s the old spark plug when I did them as well

Here they are now with only 4,000 miles on them
2003 Mazda Protege5
I smell gas around the rear of the car and did last time I owned it. Not sure if there's a common leak point on these? I'll investigate eventually. A leak might explain the CELs
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The Diagram Dude
2002 MP5
What are your CELs?

A bad seal on your gas cap can leak gas vapor.

When I smelt gas it was my gas tank and I had to replace it.

Rust is nasty.

The car also vents vapor pressure normally through its valves especially when it's hot out.

Part #7...

Check your mating surfaces between the gas cap and filler neck.
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