Common Citroen Car Issues and their Remedies

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Citroen, a renowned French automaker, is known for its innovative designs and performance-oriented vehicles. However, just like any other automobile, Citroen models may encounter certain problems over their lifespan. This article provides an in-depth look at the common issues faced by Citroen car owners and the potential solutions to these problems.

1. Citroen C4 Picasso and Grand Picasso: Water Ingress and Resulting Damages

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Owners of the Citroen C4 Picasso and Grand Picasso models have reported a recurring problem of water ingress and subsequent water damage. The culprit often lies in the scuttle area’s drainage system, which appears to be under-designed, leading to water accumulation and dampness.

1.1 Identifying the Problem

If you notice a sloshing sound from inside your Citroen C4 Picasso or Grand Picasso, you might be dealing with this issue. Water ingress can lead to damage to the a/c blower motors and modules, often requiring comprehensive repairs or replacements.

1.2 Solution

To mitigate this issue, it is advisable to modify the drainage outlets. This modification prevents further water accumulation and subsequent damage, making the problem less likely to recur.

2. Citroen C3 Picasso: Water Damage in the Fuse Box

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Many Citroen C3 Picasso models have reported water damage in the fuse box, a crucial component located under the bonnet. This problem often leads to the rotting of multi-plug wires, necessitating costly replacement.

2.1 Rectifying the Problem

To address this issue, it is possible to repair the damaged wires by grafting wires from scrapped cars into the vehicle’s own loom/multiplug. This workaround is more cost effective than replacing the entire loom.

2.2 Ongoing Research

The source of water ingress in these models is still under investigation. However, the focus on repair and remediation continues, with a commitment to finding a permanent solution.

3. 1.6/1.4 THP Engine Turbo: Cooling Fan and Misfire Problems


The 1.6/1.4 THP engine turbo, featured in many Citroen models, has shown frequent cooling fan problems. Often, these issues are attributed to misfires caused by poor maintenance. The engine control unit (ECU) declares a state of emergency upon detecting excessive knock and misfire.

3.1 Identifying the Problem

If you find that the cooling fan does not switch off even after turning off the ignition, you may be dealing with this issue. In some cases, the battery needs to be disconnected to turn off the fan.

3.2 Solution

A simple inspection of the spark plugs can reveal the problem. The real issue lies in the protracted service intervals and the high cost of spark plugs, which can sometimes be overlooked during routine service due to cost concerns.

4. Citroen C5: Central Locking System Failure

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Some Citroen C5 owners have reported that the central locking system does not work with the key fob, even after replacing the battery and trying all reset options.

4.1 Diagnostic Testing

To troubleshoot this issue, it’s essential to test the keys for a signal output. If the keys are functioning correctly, a comprehensive system diagnostic test will be required to investigate further.

5. Citroen C4 VTR+: Power Failure and Injector Issues

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The Citroen C4 VTR+ has been reported to suffer from intermittent loss of power during normal driving and occasional non-starting issues. These issues are often attributed to injector faults and require diagnostic testing.

5.1 Diagnostic Testing and Solutions

The first step in addressing these issues is to conduct a diagnostic test. If an injector fault is detected, a repair or replacement may be necessary.

6. Citroen C5 Tourer: Windscreen Wiper Faults

Citroen C5 Tourer owners have reported faults with the front windscreen wipers. The left wiper often stops working, while the right one only moves back and forth over a small range.

6.1 Repair Procedure

To address this issue, a re-synchronization of the wiper motors may be necessary. This process might require the last eight digits of the chassis number.

7. Citroen Berlingo: Engine Starting Issues

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The Berlingo model, particularly the 1.9d variant, has reported issues with the engine not starting, despite having a good battery and the engine turning over.

7.1 Diagnostic Process and Solution

The issue is likely related to the DDS unit on the fuel pump. A quick workaround involves tapping the steel plate on the pump with a hammer during ignition. However, this is a temporary solution and a visit to a Citroen specialist garage is recommended to avoid future starting issues.

8. Citroen C4 Grand Picasso: Brake Lights, ABS, and ESP Warning Lights

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Owners of the Citroen C4 Grand Picasso have reported issues with the brake lights, ABS, and ESP warning lights coming on intermittently after driving approximately 15 miles. This issue also leads to gear selection problems.

8.1 Diagnostic Testing and Remediation

A global ECU diagnostic test using the manufacturer’s equipment is essential to addressing this issue. The ESP fault is usually a temporary one and clears up upon restarting the vehicle. However, without the ESP information on speed, the gearbox may not calculate the gear change strategy correctly.

9. Citroen Xsara Picasso: Airbag Light Staying On

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The Citroen Xsara Picasso has been reported to have the airbag light stay on, which could lead to MOT failure.

9.1 Solution

Yes, this could be a reason for MOT failure, therefore it is important to address this issue promptly. A diagnostic test can help identify the root cause of the problem.

10. Citroen C3: Warning Sounds and Faulty Lights

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Some owners of the 2008 Citroen C3 have reported warning sounds indicating various lights not working. However, upon checking, all the lights seem to be functioning normally.

10.1 Diagnostic Testing and Solution

This issue might be due to a fault in the n/s/r lamp or the BSI. A diagnostic test can help pinpoint the exact problem and provide a suitable solution.

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Citroen cars, like all other vehicles, may encounter certain issues over their lifespan. However, with the right knowledge and timely maintenance, these problems can be easily addressed. Regular servicing, using genuine parts, and consulting with Citroen specialists like Service My Car can ensure your car continues to perform optimally.

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