Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

This is the Forum for all your Citroen Technical Questions, Problems or Advice.

Moderator: RichardW

User avatar
xantia_v6
Forum Admin Team
Posts: 5406
Joined: 09 Nov 2005, 23:03
x 189

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by xantia_v6 » 26 Dec 2017, 23:54

I think that the rear of the car needs to be on stands with both rear wheels hanging down to allow access for this job. You may be able to use your ramps under the sills, with suitable wood blocks to spread the load.
0

User avatar
spiff
Posts: 169
Joined: 08 Aug 2017, 20:24
x 16

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by spiff » 27 Dec 2017, 20:43

lexi wrote:
25 Dec 2017, 13:33
The worst part of all this is the pin that goes through the unit. It either comes straight out or is totally seized. I have the remains of a pin in one of mine. Despite grinding and hardening tool steel punches of clearance diameter.............it remains in there!
The clip the other end just holds the boot in place.

Does the pin that goes through the unit hold the other end of the piston ?

If so and you still have part of the old one in there, how did you get the new pin to do its job ?

Did you perhaps drill another hole ?

God Bless Spiff
0

wurlycorner
Posts: 1431
Joined: 30 Oct 2012, 23:37
x 51

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by wurlycorner » 27 Dec 2017, 22:21

The suspension needs to be set onto lowest setting with the wheels off the ground and hanging - otherwise the push rod will either be held under full compression under pressure (suspension on full height/wheels on the ground) or pushed right in between the trailing arm and the inside of the piston (suspension on lowest setting) and in either of those scenario's, you won't be able to get it out.

It doesn't matter which end you disconnect first, but you might as well start with the trailing arm end, as that is likely to be the most difficult.

The pin can stick. I didn't have a problem on my C5 with it particularly, but have previously had a problem on CX's.
Sticking a screwdriver through the hole in the inner end (where you pull from) so you can pull with both hands (one either side) of the pin helps IIRC. Also if you clean off the outer end of the pin first (scotchbrite/emery cloth/sand paper) to remove any dirt/corrosion from the pin, that will mean once started it will pull through the hole in the trailing arm/push rod without any problems.

Nothing else will move around while you're removing the pin or push-rod, provided you have the car/suspension set up as stated.
0

lexi
donor 2017
Posts: 2694
Joined: 17 Apr 2008, 17:51
x 92

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by lexi » 27 Dec 2017, 22:50

spiff wrote:
27 Dec 2017, 20:43
lexi wrote:
25 Dec 2017, 13:33
The worst part of all this is the pin that goes through the unit. It either comes straight out or is totally seized. I have the remains of a pin in one of mine. Despite grinding and hardening tool steel punches of clearance diameter.............it remains in there!
The clip the other end just holds the boot in place.

Does the pin that goes through the unit hold the other end of the piston ?

If so and you still have part of the old one in there, how did you get the new pin to do its job ?

Did you perhaps drill another hole ?

God Bless Spiff


Hi Spiff
I got the pin out of the torn boot side and replaced that. Because I am a good bloke :-D , I thought to do the other one on N/S. Every trick in the book saw the pin break at one side of the shaft. I cut that side flush and then heated it locally with my small jewellers torch, using heat sink compound to try and protect my rubber seals. That usually does the trick. Nope, still would not punch out. So, still in there. The pin only holds the rod in one direction. The force of pushing the car up is taken by the stop end in the cylinder that the rod locates in. Mine is seized together and the pin is slightly protruding out of one side. So it is held as the unit retracts pulls and unloads. Needs done though and it will be a bench job with hydraulics disconnected.
I will do it this summer and change all the LDS. No problems with car, after doing lots of the jobs needed after 100k miles.
0

User avatar
spiff
Posts: 169
Joined: 08 Aug 2017, 20:24
x 16

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by spiff » 27 Dec 2017, 23:57

wurlycorner wrote:
27 Dec 2017, 22:21
The suspension needs to be set onto lowest setting with the wheels off the ground and hanging - otherwise the push rod will either be held under full compression under pressure (suspension on full height/wheels on the ground) or pushed right in between the trailing arm and the inside of the piston (suspension on lowest setting) and in either of those scenario's, you won't be able to get it out.

It doesn't matter which end you disconnect first, but you might as well start with the trailing arm end, as that is likely to be the most difficult.

The pin can stick. I didn't have a problem on my C5 with it particularly, but have previously had a problem on CX's.
Sticking a screwdriver through the hole in the inner end (where you pull from) so you can pull with both hands (one either side) of the pin helps IIRC. Also if you clean off the outer end of the pin first (scotchbrite/emery cloth/sand paper) to remove any dirt/corrosion from the pin, that will mean once started it will pull through the hole in the trailing arm/push rod without any problems.

Nothing else will move around while you're removing the pin or push-rod, provided you have the car/suspension set up as stated.


Do all four wheels have to be off the ground or just the rear ones ?

God Bless Spiff
0

wurlycorner
Posts: 1431
Joined: 30 Oct 2012, 23:37
x 51

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by wurlycorner » 28 Dec 2017, 10:37

Just the rear
0

User avatar
spiff
Posts: 169
Joined: 08 Aug 2017, 20:24
x 16

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by spiff » 28 Dec 2017, 13:36

Thank you all gentlemen for your help : )

I think I am all set as long as I can get the car to drop to low.

This leak was discovered while plugging in a replacement sensor at the rear, to see if it would correct a problem with the pump intermittently not running when it should.

Serious Suspension fault comes up.

The pump itself is fine.

After being parked over night it is normally OK until driven a couple of miles, or if the raise or low setting is selected it tends to trigger the fault.

I may try the front height sensor before doing the boot.

Found a boot on eBay which should arrive by the 2nd of January, £9.75 with postage : )

Next thing is a Lexis, I have a WXP laptop being donated : )

Will post results.

God Bless Spiff
0

User avatar
spiff
Posts: 169
Joined: 08 Aug 2017, 20:24
x 16

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by spiff » 29 Dec 2017, 22:09

Just a couple more questions as the boot has arrived super fast : )

Can the job be done with out getting under the car, by removing the rear wheel and doing it from the wheel arch ?

I am only going to be doing one side so can I just lift that side ?

God Bless Spiff
0

wurlycorner
Posts: 1431
Joined: 30 Oct 2012, 23:37
x 51

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by wurlycorner » 29 Dec 2017, 22:34

You can do each side independently, yes - although you will need to have both wheels off the ground together I think anyway, so might as well do both at the same time? (Once you've done the first one, you have 'the knack' and the second one is mega easy!)

There is no way you could do the job without getting under the car - you will be on a hiding to nothing, fumbling about blind trying to remove/replace the pipes and remove/refit the clips and working at completely the wrong angle.
0

User avatar
spiff
Posts: 169
Joined: 08 Aug 2017, 20:24
x 16

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by spiff » 29 Dec 2017, 23:15

Thank you for that, both wheels off the ground and do the job underneath, Oh well I could but hope : )

God Bless Spiff
0

User avatar
spiff
Posts: 169
Joined: 08 Aug 2017, 20:24
x 16

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by spiff » 30 Dec 2017, 18:24

More problems : )

A quick recap no leaks but Series Suspension Fault.

Fault occurred after a few miles or using the rise and lower switch, pump then will not run.

Pump tested OK

Purchased a height sensor to try.

Last ride before trying sensor car sunk at rear over trip, very bumpy ride back.

Looked under to see driver side suspension rear boot dripping, put bowl under.

Ordered new boot.

Boot arrived Joy : )

Car left over Christmas, today I thought first I will see if the pin will come out.

The rear had sunk a lot at the back and the pump ran longer than normal, but eventually it came up.

Put on ramps, the pin is nice and loose : )

I decided to get a new clamp for the other end of the boot, a screw instead of the type fitted before doing the job.

That lot is under control but new problem is : -

Noticed than now the area round the centre sphere was soaked in fluid, sorry that image is out of focus it was wet and cold and the light was fading.

It had even spread to the height sensor, see images.

I tried all the junctions round it including the sphere, but all are tight.

I had cleaned a lot of the fluid off before taking the picture, but could not see where the fluid is coming from.

Any Idea's : )

God Bless Spiff
Attachments
P01.jpg
P02.jpg
P03.jpg
P04.jpg
0

User avatar
xantia_v6
Forum Admin Team
Posts: 5406
Joined: 09 Nov 2005, 23:03
x 189

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by xantia_v6 » 30 Dec 2017, 18:45

It is possible that your root problem is a leaking ram. The leakage is being contained within the boot, but (particularly when going over bumps) the leakage rate is great enough that it is pressurising the low pressure return line, causing fluid to escape wherever it can.
0

User avatar
spiff
Posts: 169
Joined: 08 Aug 2017, 20:24
x 16

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by spiff » 30 Dec 2017, 19:08

Thank you for your reply : )

Where is the fluid round the sphere coming from ?

As far as I know there is not a low pressure return round there ?

It looks as if the breather pipe from the ram boot goes into the same casing that is above the sphere.

Is it possible and are you saying that the original Serious Suspension Fault warning is tied up with the ram leaking, pressurising the return system which has just got worse ?

This is forcing fluid via the breather pipe into the void above the sphere which is then leaking over the sphere ?

God Bless Spiff
0

wurlycorner
Posts: 1431
Joined: 30 Oct 2012, 23:37
x 51

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by wurlycorner » 30 Dec 2017, 20:39

The breather pipes from the cylinder boot, vents into the subframe cross member (the pipe litteraly just pokes through a grommet in the cross member and then stops).

Is it possible that the split in the boot is causing fluid to be sprayed onto the centre sphere, when the suspension moves???

I would certainly start with what you already know is faulty (the gaitors) and give all the gubbins around the centre a good wife over clean/dry, then keep a close eye on the car to see what happens. That will eliminate one possible cause of the leak and if the fluid reappears, it should allow you to see exactly where it's coming from.

You really, really, MUST get the car into a lexia to read the fault codes in order to diagnose the "serious suspension fault". Anything else (changing random bits) instead of doing that, is just wasting time and money and potentially causing more problems (changing height sensors could just result in throwing out the height settings).
0

dnsey
Posts: 1537
Joined: 20 Oct 2004, 01:39
x 12

Re: Citroen C5 2003 dripping fluid from passenger rear suspension ram boot

Post by dnsey » 30 Dec 2017, 21:30

IME, it's quite normal for a little misting from the breather to gradually accumulate inside the crossmember, which has a drain hole directly above the centre sphere block.
Mine gets a degrease just before the MOT each year to avoid difficult questions, but I've never had to top up the fluid.
0