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Suspension problems

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cruiserphil   
Wed Oct 09 2013, 07:49pm

Joined: Jan 24 2010
Member No: #38
Location: Celbridge
Sam,

Points taken and understood. If I can, I will check with Diagbox for options at the weekend and report back.

Regards,

Phil C.

P.S. I've moved up in the world - I have Diagbox now!!
1 User said Thank You to cruiserphil for this Post :
 smihaialex (09 October 2013)
smihaialex   
Wed Oct 09 2013, 09:49pm
Joined: Sep 18 2012
Member No: #1031
Location: Bucharest
Hey Phill, don't bother - I was wrong - my car does lift up on unlock I just wasn't paying attention. After reading your post, I did pay a bit more attention and found out that it in fact does.

However, it is indeed a two (2) step process - it lifts up about half way on unlock and then another bit on contact (inserting the key and turning half way, waiting for the dash to bring up 'oil ok'). I was only noticing the second lift up (it's harder to miss, because I'm actually in the car)

So, thank you, as always any chat with you is very informative

Cheerios,
Sam

1 User said Thank You to smihaialex for this Post :
 cruiserphil (10 October 2013)
smihaialex   
Thu Oct 10 2013, 06:17pm
Joined: Sep 18 2012
Member No: #1031
Location: Bucharest
Wow! The strangest thing happened... I'm beginning to feel that my car is sentient and, sensing that I was badmouthing it on our forum, it decided to give me a lesson...

You know how I was saying that everything was fine and dandy?!?

Well, as it turns out, everything isn't nice and dandy... Today, the screen just brought up "Suspension faulty: Max. speed 90 Km/h" as well as the SERVICE light...

The issue happened just moments after passing over some bumps in the road with my left hand side, at very low speed (just starting from a traffic light), causing the whole car to wobble side to side, like a small row boat on a lateral wave ripple. It did not happen instantly however - passed over the bumps with my left hand side, and 2-300 meters later, up pops the message...

Now, I have done extensive reading on our forum on anything suspension related, and on the one hand I must thank you all for the awesome contribution, especially Phil who has done a heck of a job documenting his past issues and some fine DIY solutions, but on the other hand, I feel I'm getting a bit of a headache because there's so much information that I don't know where to start. And the feeling that it's a bit too much for me to tackle by myself, but also that I just can't trust my Citroën Service with any of this isn't helping either.

So, if possible, could you guide me through what would be the next steps.

Besides the "Suspension faulty: Max speed 90 Km/h" message and the SERVICE light, symptoms are as follows:
- up and down suspension buttons do not work, clicking on down does nothing, clicking on up brings up: "Command disallowed" with the sketch of the car's profile crossed off, just like when pressing on down while the car is moving or on up when the speed is above the limit for the requested height setting.
- the car's rear does NOT drop while driving
- I do find my car on its lowest height setting occasionally while parked
- sometimes when raising the suspension or better yet when lowering, it seems that one side is lowering faster than the other, especially at the front (can't remember which side faster - left or right)
- ride is better since CSS software update, but still bellow my expectations from the world's most advanced suspension system - it's crashy and loud on poor road surfaces, but soft and pitching front to back and side to side when the road surface is good, but wavy or in corners, especially the front seems very bouncy up and down - feels like a small row boat tackling some wave ripple head on - I've always had a feeling that there's something wrong with the suspension but never got the chance to drive another C6 for more extended periods, so that I can see what it's like at motorway speeds, what it's like at low speeds, what it's like on poor roads etc
- Sport mode is working (or was working before the message appeared) - I did sense a difference between sport engaged and sport disengaged - sport engaged, the car felt more like a traditional suspension car - stiffer, could feel every crack in the road, but it would still bounce (especially at the nose) if road was wavy and it did still lean into corners tackled somewhat more aggressively (at higher speeds), also the sound it made was louder in sport mode, especially when jumping off a ridge (like you know how some bridges feature a ridge in the asphalt between the portion of the bridge that's ascending and the portion of the bridge that's flat, which if you tackle with more speed gives the impression that for a second the car is airborne, like in the movies - well, whenever I would hit such a ridge with higher speeds, as soon as the front wheels drop behind it, there's a loud thump like sound from the suspension - that sound would be louder in sport mode).

So, bottom-line: what next?

Thank you,
Sam
drummond   
Fri Oct 11 2013, 06:59am
Joined: Sep 20 2010
Member No: #238
Location: Aldeburgh
All hydropneumatic suspension systems fall over when one gets to a hump back bridge or similar. I wonder if the small size of the C6's spheres allied to the weight of the car may be to blame for the crashing,(just a thought).

I've driven three C6's, and of the two 2.7's that I drove (one for two weeks) both shivered like a dog getting out of water on occasions. My 2.2 doesn't, as it has simpler suspension. The CSS should help, but I think that you have a problem which we all have.

I said two years ago that the suspension system ís less good than the DS that I have, and I reiterate that. Quite a lot more complicated, as well. Much quieter, though!

The current version of Lexia should tell you about the message.

Regards

Tim
gmerry   
Fri Oct 11 2013, 08:41am
Joined: Dec 11 2009
Member No: #21
Location: Scotland
Hi Smih' , how old are your spheres. Have you checked the pressures?

My first port of call on any major loss of ride comfort/control would be to check out the front suspension spheres. For the 2.7 Hdi, these are charged to 50 bar (front corners) and 70 bar (front stiffness regulator) which is a very high pressure for such a small volume (385cc) to be contained by a flexible diaphragm.

In my opinion, anyone servicing the C6 needs a sphere removal wrench and a sphere pressure tester: the good news is that it is a fairly simple job to depressurise the suspension and remove the front spheres.

Regards
G
smihaialex   
Fri Oct 11 2013, 01:51pm
Joined: Sep 18 2012
Member No: #1031
Location: Bucharest
Thanks for the replies guys

Unfortunately, things got worse...

This morning I went to the car with the intention of getting it to my Citroen Service Shop (15 minute drive). Found the car flat down on its front side. It didn't get up on unlock, but it seemed to get up on ignition (but I was stupid enough to just drive away, instead of double checking ).

The 'Suspension faulty' error as well as the service light were gone, so I was thinking - wow, so far so good, maybe it fixed itself, but the joy was shortlived because 1 minute or so later I reached the first of two speed bumps installed at the exit of my residential complex. Even though I tackled the speed bump cautiously, at very low speed (5 Km/h or so), the car just jumped up and down at the front, like it had no suspension whatsoever.

It was then that I realised that something was in fact still wrong - very wrong with the car's suspension. I also realised that whatever is wrong it must be at the front - and from the feel of it I suspected a collapsed front left hand side sphere. Moments after this, the 'Suspension faulty: Max. speed 90 Km/h' and the service light were brought up by the dash and the display.

A couple of minutes later, I reached the Service Shop, parked the car and got out to go take care of the reception paperwork. On exiting the car I noticed that the front was super-low - lower than I've ever seen it - lower than on the low setting even, and because I left the wheels turned more than half way to the right, I could notice something like an oily spill on the left hand side tyre and wheel arch lining - it seemed like the spill was coming from the upper area - where the strut is...

This seemed to confirm that something was wrong on the front left hand side, but I'm quite convinced that it might be more than just a colapsed sphere (I'm pretty sure that a collapsed sphere doesn't cause a spill )

I left the car at the Service Shop, tryied to convey as much info I had learned from our wonderful website to the people in charge of investigating/fixing my car, got on my Brompton foldable bike (Made in the UK ) and peddaled on home - couple of hours later I got in my C4 and went back for a check up - they still hadn't found out what happened, but they had more bad news - it seems that the computer can't communicate with the pump - like the pump has been taken offline or something - and the guys there suspect that that's the problem...

I however, refuse to believe that's the case.

I do so, because the pump going dead would have made the car drop, and not just at the front, but at the back as well, right?!? And that didn't happen. Also the pump going dead does not explain why there's stiffness at the front end, but not at the back. And last but not least, it sure as hell doesn't explain what I presume to be an LDS spill at the front left hand side...

I think the technitions here are missing something, I'm just not sure what it is...

What do you think?

Cheerios,
Sam
gmerry   
Fri Oct 11 2013, 02:31pm
Joined: Dec 11 2009
Member No: #21
Location: Scotland
Personally, in this situation I would depressurise the suspension (via mechanical bleed screws) and then check out the spheres. There is no diagnostic checks on the spheres so unless problems with these are eliminated directly, you don't know whether any other problems are caused by the faulty spheres (i.e., not the root cause). Once you know the spheres are good, check /top up the volume and take it from there. Once a sphere has gone, you run the risk of blowing out LDS from the system. I have a special overflow cap with a piece of tubing attached that can be directed into a bottle (unstead of making a mess in the engine bay).

The leak/spill on the front Left Hand side sounds like a Power Steering hose issue or possibly a suspension hose/pipe problem. Could be that your system has lost all its fluid? Any funny pump noises|?

PS, some of your symptoms are similar to mine when I had faulty front spheres (corner and the stiffness regulator)

Regards
G
1 User said Thank You to gmerry for this Post :
 smihaialex (11 October 2013)
smihaialex   
Fri Oct 11 2013, 09:34pm
Joined: Sep 18 2012
Member No: #1031
Location: Bucharest
Hey G,

Thanks for the message. Much appreciated.

To answer your questions... The pump makes no noise whatsoever. The steering pipe has been replaced early this year with a brand new Citroen original. Although I haven't replaced them myself, judging from the paint on the spheres, they might have been replaced fairly recently - there's no corrosion, no nothing - another thing - my car's spheres look better than my brother's 2009 C5's spheres... I wouldn't bet money on this though, as it might me just a perception - my whole car looks impeccable (it doesn't show its age, nor its mileage), but that doesn't change the fact that it is one of the earlier and older models (built 2006, registered 2007), my point being that looks might be deceiving and the spheres might be in fact older than they seem - they might very well be the original ones. Moving on... The LDS is still there - I don't know the exact level but you can see it when taking off the cap on the tank, so if some spilled, it was only a tiny bit...

Questions:
1. what do you make of the fact that the pump is not accessible electronically - it does not respond to the ECU's commands to raise the car, lower the car etc via Diagbox?
2. as soon as the suspension faulty error message was brought up, I tried the up and down suspension controls and the commands were disallowed, meaning that the system had blocked access to the suspension control - is it plausible that if one or more spheres go and the system detects a suspension problem, then the pump is taken offline along with the suspension controls and this is why right now it is not accessible? or is it more probable that it is the pump who has failed and that's why the controls are disabled? and if this is the case, how could the pump failing cause a spill in the front left hand wheel arch?

Warm regards,
Sam
belstone   
Sat Oct 12 2013, 11:31am
Joined: Feb 25 2012
Member No: #810
Location: Hastings and Aberystwyth
I am experiencing something similar to smihaialex. By design, if the ECU detects a 'Suspension Faulty' condition then the up/down buttons are disabled with the warning seen, since in some conditions moving the car up or down could cause more problems.

I have now got all new Citroen spheres front and back, but the car still sinks rapidly on locking, and takes a long time to rise. A valve or some other hydraulic component in the rear part may be leaking pressure back into the hydraulic system.

Occasionally after a minute or two of driving there is a sudden bounce up at the back, which then doesn't change again during the rest of the journey. At other times the back will come up with a bit of a spring, and then continue rising.
smihaialex   
Sat Oct 12 2013, 08:16pm
Joined: Sep 18 2012
Member No: #1031
Location: Bucharest
Yes, well, unfortunately, my pump isn't coming back online, and at this point I would be more than happy if it turns out that I 'just' have to change all the spheres (at 500 EUR or so), instead of the pump unit (at 1400 EUR of so)

So, the main question remains - while the suspension faulty error is displayed and the buttons don't work - is the pump also offline?!? Or should the pump be online and accessible via BSI, regardless?!?

Cheers,
Sam
smihaialex   
Tue Oct 15 2013, 11:07pm
Joined: Sep 18 2012
Member No: #1031
Location: Bucharest
Got word from my Citroën Service yesterday...

It is the pump There's also another piece of hydraulic piping that needs replacing... All in all, about £ 1,000 worth of repairs...

They've also told me that there's some thin' wrong with the multi-purpose command unit (behind the steering wheel, with the lights and the wiper stalks) it seems that it's not accessible to the ECU via BSI and it fills the log with communication errors and it might eventually mess up the CAN BUS, but I'm not planning to replace that just yet because it's not that cheap (almost as much as the HP pump)...

Cheers,
Sam
gmerry   
Wed Oct 16 2013, 02:48pm
Joined: Dec 11 2009
Member No: #21
Location: Scotland
Hi Sam, you are right to be cautious about replacing the steering wheel ECU because most of us have that error and at one time it was thought to down to a Lexia software problem...

Regards
G
1 User said Thank You to gmerry for this Post :
 smihaialex (17 October 2013)
rogerandoutman   
Wed Oct 16 2013, 07:16pm
Joined: May 10 2011
Member No: #466
Location: London
I know it sound simple, but have you checked the maxi fuse that protects the pump, mine blew and I have replaced with a 50amp and so far so good. if pump is faulty check out - Click Here - a UK company that remanufacture the pump assembly for £275.00 + vat. they only show a C5 unit on their site, so I am not sure if it is identical, otherwise you will have to send you old unit for overhall. Buts its less expensive than a new pump.
Also check fluid level, I have just added 2 litres of LDS, and this is following a Citroen dealer service two months ago
1 User said Thank You to rogerandoutman for this Post :
 smihaialex (17 October 2013)
e3steve   
Wed Oct 16 2013, 09:58pm
Joined: Jan 21 2013
Member No: #1163
Location: Warsash, Hants & Palma de Mallorca, Spain
rogerandoutman wrote ...

I know it sound simple, but have you checked the maxi fuse that protects the pump, mine blew and I have replaced with a 50amp and so far so good.......
Same! Mine blew a second time before I decided to 'up' it a tad.

rogerandoutman wrote ...

Also check fluid level, I have just added 2 litres of LDS..........
Same!!
rorydoyle43   
Thu Oct 17 2013, 12:43am
Joined: Jun 14 2011
Member No: #516
Location: waterford
there's a guy on the german Ebay breaking a whole c6 at reasonable prices.
1 User said Thank You to rorydoyle43 for this Post :
 e3steve (17 October 2013)
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