Guess What - Xantia Suspension stuff

Our most popular forum is for Citroën problems, discussions and chat.
Specialising in AX, BX, ZX, Xantia,C5, Xsara, Saxo and XM. CX, 2cv & Berlingo, all are welcome.NOT for selling cars/parts!

Moderator: RichardW

Ben Hancy
Posts: 13
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2002 4:52 am
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Guess What - Xantia Suspension stuff

Postby Ben Hancy » Fri Jul 12, 2002 5:13 am

All, I have had a search round this forum and think I already know the worst, but I would be gratefull if you can confirm for me.
I have a 1996 N Reg 1.8i 16V Xantia Dimension. (114K Miles)
The Rear suspension is suspect it's wasted a brand new set of rear tyres in 4 Months.
When the car starts in the morning, the front raises within a couple of seconds however the back can take up to a couple of minutes.
It Clicks a bit 1st thing but not whilst I'm driving.
Once it's up, the ride from the rear is still fairly rough.
The Questions .....
Is this definatley a case for replacing the spheres ? (I Don't think they have ever been done before)
Is there an argument for doing them all at the same time ?, Or do I just need to do the rear ?
Should I think about replacing the Height Adjuster, the Haynes manual suggest that you can't make any repairs to them - is this true ?
Is there anyhthing else I need to consider ?
Are the reconditioned spheres worth touching considering I hope to keep the car for a good few years yet ?
What can I expext to pay for the Job if I do it myself ?
Is this Job out of a semi-techie mechanics league ? ( can manage to swap out engines and change clutches any rocket science in these spheres !)
Be grateful for any responses to this - I've got a new baby on the way in a couple of months and don't wanna splash out on bit's I don't really need.
Cheers
Ben
0 x

Trevor C B
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2002 5:40 am
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Postby Trevor C B » Fri Jul 12, 2002 6:26 am

Be Brave be confident and you will get through this. I have had similar dilema's with a xantia. If I remeber correctly to replace all spheres I was quotes over 360pounds but it may be more 'depending what we find'
Thanks to Jim Chollo who helped me through it.
Xantia 2.0i sx
1, The rear height adjustor valve had seized due to lack of lubrication. a good clean and a lube got it working.
2, the small plastic tie bar worked loose on the connection to the antiroll bar. new part bought at less then a pound fitted.(note the position angle of the clamp before removal by scribing a line)
3. Spheres, A good removal tool is an investment when you buy your spheres. A/S do one for 30 quid approx. buy it will save hours of messing around with copius jubilee clips and saying ' we did last time with these'
Andy spares offer a good price for new spheres replace them yourselve and save money/
one thing I was confused about was priming / charging the spheres ( a fall back to British Leyland ) but they come charged and ready . A smeer of grease on the new rubber seal and they srew in lovely to save you pounds.
This is a brief intro into doing the job, it can be done and there lots of others here to add to what I have said to keep you straight with it
Good Luck - what will you spend the saved money on ????
Thanks again Jim if you see this
<img src=icon_smile.gif border=0 align=middle>
Trevor
0 x

Trevor C B
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2002 5:40 am
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Postby Trevor C B » Fri Jul 12, 2002 6:31 am

SORRY I FORGOT TO GIVE THE SAFTEY WARNING ABOVE.
Due to the suspension being liquid based it has a mind of it's own.
When working on a Xantia Jack and support all four corners with stands. You will be fascinated to whatch all of the vaious parts moving around whn you adjust then
Remember to 'chock the front wheels' where the handbrake is applied
0 x

reffro
Posts: 144
Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2002 3:24 pm
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Postby reffro » Fri Jul 12, 2002 2:40 pm

IF you any where near Harpenden, Hertfordshire, and you don't fancy tackling the job yourself, try Citronics, you can find them on the web. They changed all 7 spheres on my Xantia for 270 pounds, it will cheaper if your car doesn't have Hydractive suspension, as mine does. For the record it was £19+vat per sphere, plus £25+vat per axle to change the spheres, is what they charged me.
0 x

pwatson
Posts: 267
Joined: Sun Apr 22, 2001 3:02 am
Location: E Midlands
My Cars:

Postby pwatson » Fri Jul 12, 2002 3:11 pm

Try this link - it's about exactly the same problem on a BX and how to solve it. i have also e-mailed you two excellent articles by Anders Jensen with step by step instructions on how to service height correctors. Note that HCs are the same front and rear.
http://members4.boardhost.com/citroen_bx/msg/19072.html
PhilW
Phil
0 x

pwatson
Posts: 267
Joined: Sun Apr 22, 2001 3:02 am
Location: E Midlands
My Cars:

Postby pwatson » Fri Jul 12, 2002 3:26 pm

p.s - If it has worn out tyres in that time it sounds to me like rear arm bearings have gone. If these bearings are really bad I think they would also affect rising and falling of the rear. (Others may know more than me on this likelihood?? Look from rear of car - do the rear wheels lean in at the top /\ ? Rear tyres on our Xantia lasted all the time we had the car - 4 years and about 60,000 miles. On my BX I had to replace rears because they were so old - still had plenty of tread on them (Michelins by the way)
PhilW
Phil
0 x

Ben Hancy
Posts: 13
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2002 4:52 am
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Postby Ben Hancy » Sun Jul 14, 2002 6:08 am

Thanks to all for your responses, I am going to bite the bullet and spend some money tomorrow.
I didn't get a definite response on my question about replacing all of the spheres or just the back ones ??
speak now or forever hold your peace.
0 x

alan s
RIP 2010
Posts: 2624
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2001 4:53 pm
Location: Australia
My Cars:
x 2

Postby alan s » Sun Jul 14, 2002 7:21 am

Ben,
The job really doesn't sound like any big deal.
To try to make it sound as simple as it is, firstly forget all about flat spheres having any effect on the rising of the car; they don't. Think of a conventional "spring & shocky" type suspension and imagine the sphere taking the place of the spring and the strut or cylinders taking the place of the shock absorbers. Even if a spring breaks, the car doesn't sit right down at the bottom. A sphere has in it nitrogen at around say 2500 psi. If the membrane ruptures, the nitrogen is replaced with LHM being put in there under pressure from the pump. This means the car rides as rough as ........!!
The rising of the car comes from the LHM being pumped into the system. The amount coming into the suspension is controlled by a height corrector which in effect is a tap. The h/c is connected to linkages which are bolted to the sway bars. When the car is stopped and not running, for various reasons, the suspension settles and the "tap" goes into the open position. When restarted, the pump fires up and providing all else is clean & working OK, pumps fluid to the height corrector for distribution to the suspension components (to the spheres via the cylinders) which causes the car to rise. If however this height corrector (either front or rear) has not been regularly serviced and hence has internal dirt or is seized even partially on the linkages, the car will either be slow to rise, have a stiffish ride or will not rise at all, or at best require the manual height adjustment to be worked up & down a few times before the height correctors activate. My guess would be that the rear height corrector is sticking on the linkages which will require freeing up and lubing. The warning about only ever working under these when they are on a ramp, axle stands or over a pit can't be emphasised enough. I had one come down only a week ot two ago and that's after 18 years of owning Citroens; but....I had the car up on ramps.
My personal thoughts are that you will find that this car needs new rear swing arm bearings which will both make the car ride rough as well as scrub tyres. If as you suggest, the car is running on the original spheres, then it is a case that they should be at least tested. Get a price to have them regassed and if the price exceeds the cost of "recon" spheres, go for the recon. The difference between regassed & reconditioned spheres is usually that they paint the recon ones but normally give you a warranty which give them the edge over the regas jobs. However, if your spheres are in reasonable condition, I would opt for regassing know good spheres as opposed to chancing any others. If the rear arm bearings are tight and the h/c also sticking, that would account for the clicking in the early stages of driving. When the spheres have to be removed, go to "common problems" on this forum for several articles on that procedure. The special removal tool at the age of the car & possibly having originals fitted, would be a must.
The rear arm bearing job "may" take a couple of hours if it's the first one you've done. With practice, they can be done in 3/4 hour (45 minutes) believe it or not. Here's a website, from Japan but in English that explains the job on a BX.
http://www.bx.citroen.org/m07/m07e.html
These guys are a bit on the gentle side but I've found that if you have problems getting the outer races out, that it pays to cut a bolt long enough to fit in the outer race, give it a smack each side with an electric welder and using a decent sized ball pein and a drift, just give the welded on bolt a smack whilst everything's still hot. That is probably the biggest time saver you'll find.
As far as cost goes, the swing arm bearing kits are about 20 quid a side, recon spheres I think about 18 (if you do actually need them). So do it yourself, get the price of a meat pie out of a hundred quid and have a weekend away on the difference of what it cost doing it yourself <img src=icon_smile_big.gif border=0 align=middle>
The best bit is; at least you'll know it was done properly.
Get back to us if you have any problems but it should be very straight forward.
Alan S
0 x

JohnD
Donor 2016
Posts: 2445
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2001 12:41 am
Location: Epsom, Surrey
My Cars:
x 2

Postby JohnD » Sun Jul 14, 2002 10:02 pm

Hi Ben - No - you don't need to renew all the spheres at the same time. But you do need to do both together on the same axle.
0 x

bob
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jul 17, 2002 5:09 pm
Location:
My Cars:

Postby bob » Wed Jul 17, 2002 5:10 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE id=quote><font size=1 face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id=quote>quote:<hr height=1 noshade id=quote>
Try this link - it's about exactly the same problem on a BX and how to solve it. i have also e-mailed you two excellent articles by Anders Jensen with step by step instructions on how to service height correctors. Note that HCs are the same front and rear.
http://members4.boardhost.com/citroen_bx/msg/19072.html
PhilW
Phil
<hr height=1 noshade id=quote></BLOCKQUOTE id=quote></font id=quote><font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" size=2 id=quote>
0 x

Ben Hancy
Posts: 13
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2002 4:52 am
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Postby Ben Hancy » Mon Jul 22, 2002 12:01 am

All,
I spent all day yesterday getting at the swing arm bearing, when I eventually go there I discovered that the bearing I had was nothing like ..
A) The one I had bought
or
B) The one described on this forum.
The bearing I have is a tapared bearing, can somebody explain ???
Cheers
Ben
0 x

JohnD
Donor 2016
Posts: 2445
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2001 12:41 am
Location: Epsom, Surrey
My Cars:
x 2

Postby JohnD » Mon Jul 22, 2002 12:29 am

Hi Ben - As I understand your message, it sounds as though you've been supplied with the wrong bearings.
0 x

Ben Hancy
Posts: 13
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2002 4:52 am
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Postby Ben Hancy » Mon Jul 22, 2002 12:33 am

John,
The bearings I purchased look like the ones on the BX job on the link http://www.bx.citroen.org/m07/m07e.html
but as I said earlier the bearings in my swing arm are tapared bearings + they don't seem to be worn ???
Cheers
Ben
0 x

Dave Burns
Posts: 1934
Joined: Mon May 14, 2001 5:30 am
Location: United Kingdom
My Cars:

Postby Dave Burns » Mon Jul 22, 2002 1:02 am

The bearing's in the BX link are also tapered roller bearing's, I can't quite see your point.
Dave
0 x

alan s
RIP 2010
Posts: 2624
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2001 4:53 pm
Location: Australia
My Cars:
x 2

Postby alan s » Mon Jul 22, 2002 1:26 am

Ben,
I can't see how a swing arm bearing could be anything but tapered as they all have pre-load on them otherwise the rear arms would simply slide back & forth (or more correctly - side to side)
Normal Citroen set up is 2 tapered bearings, a spacer and thrust washers to set pre-load.
Don't want to sound silly, but you have got the swing arm bearings and not the rear wheels bearings have you?
Alan S
0 x


Return to “Citroën”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: c5rich and 5 guests