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Fluid level checks Fiat 500 2004 - 2012 Petrol 1.4

OnDemand step-by-step maintenance & repair BETA

Fiat 500 2004 - 2012  | 1.4 Fluid level checks

  • time 5 to 30 minutes
  • difficulty 1
500 diesel engine A Engine oil level dipstick B Engine oil filler cap C Coolant expansion tank D Brake and clutch fluid reservoir E Screen washer fluid reservoir F Battery

Engine oil level

1 • Make sure that your car is on level ground
2 • Check the oil level before the car is driven, or at least 5 minutes after the engine has been switched off
HINT: If the oil is checked immediately after driving the vehicle, some of the oil will remain in the upper engine components, resulting in an inaccurate reading on the dipstick

The correct oil

3 • Modern engines place great demands on their oil. It is very important that the correct oil for your car is used
Engine oil grade:
  Petrol engines Multigrade engine oil, fully-synthetic, viscosity SAE 5W/40 or 10W/40 to ACEA A3 and API SL or better Fiat classification 9.5535-S2
  Diesel engines Multigrade engine oil, fully-synthetic, viscosity SAE 5W/30 or 5W/40 to ACEA B4 and API CF or better* Fiat classification 9.5535-S1

Car care

4 • If you have to add oil frequently, you should check whether you have any oil leaks. Place some clean paper under the car overnight, and check for stains in the morning. If there are no leaks, the engine may be burning oil, or the oil may only be leaking when the engine is running .
5 • Always maintain the level between the upper and lower dipstick marks (see photo 3). If the level is too low severe engine damage may occur. Oil seal failure may result if the engine is overfilled by adding too much oil
The dipstick is located on the right-hand side of the engine (see Underbonnet check points for exact location). Withdraw the dipstick. Using a clean rag or paper towel, remove all oil from the dipstick
Insert the clean dipstick into the tube as far as it will go, then withdraw it again. Note the oil level on the end of the dipstick, which should be between the MAX and MIN marks. If the oil level is only just above, or below, the MIN mark, topping-up is required
Oil is added through the filler cap. Unscrew the cap…
…and top‑up the level; a funnel may be useful in reducing spillage. Add the oil slowly, checking the level on the dipstick often, and allowing time for the oil to fall to the sump. Add oil until the level is just up to the MAX mark on the dipstick – don’t overfill (see Car care) If you need to renew the oil and filter, click below

Engine oil and filter change

Coolant level

Warning: DO NOT attempt to remove the expansion tank pressure cap when the engine is hot, as there is a very great risk of scalding. Do not leave open containers of coolant about, as it is poisonous

Car care

6 • With a sealed-type cooling system, adding coolant on a regular basis should not be necessary. If frequent topping-up is required, it is likely there is a leak. Check the radiator, all hoses and joint faces for signs of staining or wetness, and rectify as necessary
7 • It is important that antifreeze is used in the cooling system all year round, not just during the winter months. Don’t top-up with water alone, as the antifreeze will become too diluted
The coolant level varies with the temperature of the engine, and is visible through the expansion tank. When the engine is cold, the coolant level should be between the MAX and MIN marks on the side of the reservoir. When the engine is hot, the level may rise slightly above the MAX mark
If topping-up is necessary, wait until the engine is cold. Slowly unscrew the expansion tank cap, to release any pressure present in the cooling system, and remove it
Add a mixture of water and antifreeze to the expansion tank until the coolant level is halfway between the level marks. Use only the specified antifreeze – if using Fiat antifreeze, make sure it is the same type and colour as that already in the system. Refit the cap and tighten it securely Should you need to replace the coolant, click below

Coolant replacement

Coolant replacement

Antifreeze type Paraflu UP

Brake and clutch fluid level

8 All models have a hydraulically operated clutch that on some models uses the same fluid as the braking system. On others the fluid is stored in a separate reservoir
Warning: Brake fluid can harm your eyes and damage painted surfaces, so use extreme caution when handling and pouring it
Warning: Do not use fluid that has been standing open for some time, as it absorbs moisture from the air, which can cause a dangerous loss of braking effectiveness

Safety first!

9 • If the reservoir requires repeated topping-up this is an indication of a fluid leak somewhere in the system, which should be investigated immediately
10 • If a leak is suspected, the car should not be driven until the braking system has been checked. Never take any risks where brakes are concerned
The brake fluid reservoir is located on the left-hand side of the engine compartment
On models with a separate clutch fluid reservoir, it’s located on the right, or left-hand side of the engine compartment
The MAX and MIN marks are indicated on the side of the reservoir. The fluid level must be kept between the marks at all times. Clutch fluid reservoir…
…and brake fluid reservoir.
If topping-up is necessary, first wipe clean the area around the filler cap to prevent dirt entering the hydraulic system. Unscrew the reservoir cap and carefully lift it out of position. Inspect the reservoir; if the fluid is dirty, the hydraulic system should be drained and refilled
Carefully add fluid, taking care not to spill it onto the surrounding components. Use only DOT 4 fluid; mixing different types can cause damage to the system. After topping-up to the correct level, securely refit the cap and wipe off any spilt fluid

Washer fluid level

11 • The windscreen washer reservoir also supplies the tailgate washer jet, where applicable. On models so equipped, the same reservoir also serves the headlight washers
12 • Screenwash additives not only keep the windscreen clean during foul weather, they also prevent the washer system freezing in cold weather – which is when you are likely to need it most. Don’t top-up using plain water as the screenwash will become too diluted, and will freeze during cold weather
Caution: On no account use coolant antifreeze in the washer system – this could discolour or damage paintwork
The washer fluid reservoir filler neck is located on the right-hand side of the engine compartment. The washer level cannot easily be seen. Remove the filler cap, and look down the filler neck – if fluid is not visible, topping-up may be required
When topping-up the reservoir, add a screenwash additive in the quantities recommended on the additive bottle It could also be time to replace the wiper blades. For details, click below

Wiper blade replacement