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MG MGF Technical - EPAS UNIT- 2nd Hand or not?

I'm still having problems with the EPAS on my 1997 vvc. I've just popped into the local dealer and have been told that if the unit needs replacing it is over 500 plus labour!!
But I was also told that the unit is simply a 'plug in' unit so maybe I will be able to source out the part from somewhere else and fit it myself. Therefore, does anyone know of somewhere/someone I may find a 2nd hand EPAS unit , perhaps a mg breakers? Also, will a EPAS unit from a younger car fit into a 1997 model? I'm hoping that it's not the EPAS unit at fault but the device fitted to the steering coloumn, at least it should be much cheaper.
Again I plee via this excellent web site, if there is anyone out there who can help me ( I don't mind driving) I'm willing to pay the going rate for a job well done.
Thanks in advance for any advice.

Bryan and Cheryl


There are a couple of MG breakers here in the Midlands. Might be worth giving them a call and picking their brains. If it is possible, their rates will be a damn site cheaper than those of MGR. Links to Midland MGF (Birmingham) and the MGF Centre (Wolverhampton) attached below...

Jim Hosking

To see the unit for yourself,

unscrew the two screws on the front face of the glovebox (door open)
loosten the two screws under the gloveox (they are in runners much like the fuse box cover)
pull the glove box forwards, it may be a little stiff, waggle it some.
disconnect the 4 wires going to the glovebox, there should be two with long connectors, two with short, I beleive the short go to the switch and the long go to the lamp (one of these is purple)*
now lie on the floor and look directly upwards

Now you can assess if you can replace this box yourself (two plugs and some screws I think)

>I'm hoping that it's not the EPAS unit at fault but the device fitted to the steering coloumn
not sure if this is cheaper (Rob?) as you have to replace the whole stearing coloumn - more lightly though! (if you do replace it then get the TF version (Rob?) which is better)

Will Munns

Bryan, have all the electrical connectors been thoroughly checked out? I've read a few threads where this was found to be the culprit, and thus saving the owner that hefty bill!

Will - regarding the steering column, when I swapped my rack to the TF unit, I left the EPAS well alone, so I don't have any first hand knowledge of working with the column or of the costs likely to be involved.

There have been a number of detail changes in the EPAS system - if memory serves there are at least two if not three versions of EPAS. The most significant change occured with the introduction of the MY2000 model in Nov 1999. It may be prudent not to mix versions, as the software changes were also associated with certain hardware modifications at this time. I wonder if Dieter has more information on this?

Bryan, for a '97, any earlier version of the EPAS ECU should work fine.

As for people qualified to help out, you could drop Mel @ Meltune a call (Neil, do you have his number?)
Rob Bell

Thanks for the response guys.
Is there any particular motor electrical companies that can check eletrical circuits thoroughly? I have had a look under the glove compartment for anything that seems out of place but to no avail.
I've had no choice but to book the car into the local dealer to see if they can pinpoint the fault. Because it's been in before they are going to check it free of charge.
Today the car has been used several times and the EPAS unit has only failed once. On ignition the power steering light on the dash illuminates for a couple of seconds then goes out. As soon as I move the steering wheel to the left or right the light illuminates again and the power steering fails-a clicking is heard from the EPAS unit. Sometimes if I turn off the ignition and then turn it on again the system works fine if I turn the steering wheel slowly left and right before setting off.
The car is also due for the MOT soon so will this problem cause it to fail?
I'm determined to get to the bottom of this before my hair falls out!!

kind regards
bryan and cheryl

Not sure what to recommend.
Did you unplug and reconnect all affiliated connectors in the meantime ?

I think I'd try at second to crosscheck the torque sensor against any other friends working EPAS.
Then if all measures of resistance seam equal (which is no evidence), I'd try to change the EPAS against any older (silver coloured box) from a breaker.
Mind you on the picture collection. The partnumbers of both boxes (98 change ) are on the enlarged pictures.

I'm sorry, not much help, but you can spot on what you will pay for :(
Dieter K.

Bryan & Cheryl,
I have replaced the EPAS unit on my car in an attempt to solve a fault - turned out to be a faulty connector into the EPAS unit and not the unit itself!
The EPAS unit is cheaper to replace than the column, becuse if the sensor is faulty, it means replacing the whole column (if you go to a Rover dealer) ;-)
I still have a spare EPAS unit from a 1996/1997 car which worked fine when removed if this would be of any help to you - if not I would think Midland MGF would have some.
Jason H
Jason H

No it won't cause an MOT fail (or if it does then remove the plug with lots of normal thicknes wires from the EPAS unit- the EPAS won't work, but you wont get any red light!)

Will Munns

Thanks again guys.
This morning before taking it along to the MGdealer, I checked all the connections once more and the earths. The fault is still there.
I phoned the MGdealer at 4.30 and was told that the car needed to be kept in as they can not find out what was causing the fault and that the Technician working on it was going through the wiring diagrams but without much success!
I can only now presume that it cant be a fault with the EPAS unit afterall because surely they would have replaced it 1st of all to see if it cleared the fault??
Anyway, hopefully by tomorrow I will be able to tell you what the problem was/is for future reference incase it happens to anyone else.

Kind regards,


Here's hoping for good news Bryan
Rob Bell

Aarghhh, I'm getting annoyed now, the car is none the healthier, the garage need to keep it in until Monday, just as well I'm away for the weekend and I don't need the car. Apparently 2 guys hve been working on it and they now believe it's the EPAS unit! I think I told them that was the problem when I took it in! Price quoted for the unit is a staggering 273. I'm going to send the faulty unit to MG and demand an explanation as to why such a unit should fail after just 25000 miles.
Time to buy another car me thinks!

Blame Mitsubishi - they manufacture the control unit!

Seriously though, I understand your frustration. I hope that this problem gets sorted soon, and you can get back on the road and enjoying your MG!
Rob Bell

There is part of an MGF Epas system on sale on Ebay for 25, apparently 300 from MGF. Quite how you come across one of things in a box I have no idea, maybe back lorry of dropped, but might help!

Just got the car back from MGR after they claimed the fault was in the EPAS unit and guess what?. The car still has the same fault after they've fitted a new EPAS unit.
Phoned them up straight away to be told that the Epas unit was faulty anyway.

Bullsh*t if I've ever heard it! The car is booked in again for next monday. I've asked them to check the earths and cnnxs again because I feel this is where the fauly is.

I also asked for the old EPAS unit but surprise surprise they told me they've binned it.

Oh yeah? Well, I'll be going back and demanding my 300 back. I'm not paying for a part that wasn't faulty in the 1st place.

I'll keep you posted.

kind regards


I think that you're entitled to the "old" part back, so they shouldn't have binned it anyway. Taking the bill up as a "dispute" with the credit card might focus them on it.

Perhaps they replaced the "symptom" (aparantly faulty EPAS unit) without fixing the cause...

I happened to notice this on ebay, which seems pertinant:

Good luck...


>>>Time to buy another car me thinks!

This is probably a really stupid question, Bryan, but mightn't it be cheaper and less blood-pressure-raising to just accept that the EPAS is gone and drive without it? Or have we already been through this in a previous thread - if so, please ignore this irrelevant post.

If my EPAS went I think I'd just disconnect the warning light and forget about it.
David Bainbridge

I am sorry to hear your news. I had the same with my EPAS fault, but I could not afford the prices Rover were trying to charge me for the new parts, so I bought 2nd hand units and fitted them, it proved that the fault was not in the EPAS ECU or the column. Rover eventually did refund some of the labour they had previously charged me for checking the wiring, when I found the fault was a visibly damaged connector!
Jason H
Jason H

This thread was discussed between 13/11/2002 and 21/11/2002

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