Elmas Xantia V6 and Musical Stuff

Tell us your ongoing tales and experiences with your French car here. Post pictures of your car here as well.

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Mandrake
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by Mandrake »

elma wrote:So finally I have brought the V6 home and I absolutely love it.
Congratulations on the purchase. :)
I did find this bit on the air filter housing that looks like it should have a hose, is anything missing? Just by the right side of the jubilee clip.
Nope that's normal - its just a blanked off spigot not used on the Xantia. Perhaps it was used on the Peugeot.
The 2 things that need attention which affect the drive most are the brakes which are a bit weak for a Xantia but probably good enough for an mot and the tracking.
The Xantia V6 has bigger brakes than the standard Xantia and working correctly they have loads of grunt, (In fact I find mine can easily trigger the ABS on an emergency stop even on dry roads with new tyres) so there must be something a bit wrong with them, but nothing serious I'm sure.
I think it's the tracking anyway, the steering wheels not straight when going straight and theres a little vibration over 50. Need to jack it up and check the suspension before forking out for tracking.

I'd like the wheels rebalanced as well even if the vibration is something else because the weights are on the outside where they will damage the finish.
Before you go getting the wheel alignment done, check the outside track rod ends for play and replace them if necessary first. Any slack in the track rods will magnify any small wheel imbalance many fold. Both my V6's have had a worn offside track rod end. You can usually tell front wheel imbalance is being magnified by a track rod end if cornering slightly makes the vibration go die down.

Likewise rear wheel imbalance can be noticed if it gets worse under acceleration. (This squats the rear suspension and prevents the suspension absorbing the vibration as well so it is felt more)

Good luck getting the wheels balanced - all Xantia V6's came with centerless rims - and I have been unable to find anywhere local to me that can get the balance right. :? The last place made 4 attempts and still botched it, so I'm just living with a significant wheel imbalance above 50mph because I cannot find anyone to get it right. Hopefully you have better luck.
I'm wanting to make headway with the cooling system as well since it appears to be full of stop leak and there are crystals around the seam on the expansion bottle.
Beware - if the cooling system is full of stop leak there is a good chance the gearbox oil heat exchanger is blocked on the water side. If this is the case the gearbox will overheat easily and in just a few months to a year at most of hard driving it will be damaged permanently - how do I know ? Because it happened to my first V6. :(

Do you have access to a Lexia ? If so you should plug it into the car and monitor the gearbox oil temperature while the car is being driven. (Use a co-pilot to watch the laptop of course ;) ) Go for a good spirited test drive on A roads lasting at least 20 minutes and see what temperature the oil gets up to - if it only gets up to about 94-95 degrees at most and then falls back quickly to about 90-92 degrees when you coast for a couple of minutes everything is fine. This shows it is being cooled to engine coolant temperature.

If you see temperatures in excess of 100 degrees with normal "spirited" driving and it takes a long time to drop back to 95 chances are very high that the heat exchanger is blocked and that the car should not be driven hard until this is resolved or you risk burning the oil and damaging the clutches in the gearbox.

It took about 6 months and maybe 5000 miles on my first V6 for the gearbox to be damaged due I believe, to continual overheating from a blocked heat exchanger, as it was getting up to 105 degrees or so on a regular basis. On my new V6 it doesn't go any higher than 95 even if I push it really hard and its typically around 92-94.
I've not found the degassed tank yet but assume it'll be the same and I've smelt coolant slightly in the car a couple of times so assume a matrix is due. Oh it's due a cambelt as well.
I wouldn't fret too much about the degasser tank - although they can fail I've had two V6's now with no problems with the degasser. It's a small sphere shaped nylon ball the size of a large grapefruit down amongst the pipe work under the coolant expansion chamber. You won't see it unless you remove the coolant expansion chamber or air filter box and it's a bit of a pain to get to.

On the other hand the coolant expansion chamber is renowned for leaking at the seam! Both mine have needed replacing, but it is an easy job. Just drain about a litre of coolant via the radiator drain plug then you can remove the expansion chamber with two nuts and two hoses, then top up and bleed afterwards. A fairly easy job.

I didn't catch whether yours was a S1 or a S2 but if it's a S1 beware that the low coolant sensor in the expansion chamber does not work due to a factory design flaw! #-o So if you lose a lot of coolant the first you'll know about it is an overheating engine... so keep a watch on the coolant level until you have the leaky expansion chamber fixed.

I also wouldn't assume the heater matrix is faulty - again I've had two now where it hasn't been faulty. Replace the known leaking expansion chamber first then carefully monitor for any coolant loss - if you don't have any coolant loss after fixing that leak the matrix is probably ok!

Since I replaced a corroded leaking radiator recently I have not lost any visible coolant level for over two months - its exactly at the level I left it at, which is about an inch below the top of the middle tube.

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CitroJim
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by CitroJim »

Excellent James :D It was a very enjoyable trip and great to spend some time with you again...

Your V6 is a good one and as I found, it really does drive a treat but yes, brakes need a little TLC... They should be utterly excellent.

The gearbox is utterly perfect and the best HP20 I've ever experienced :D

It's normal not to have a clip on the small hose on the air box. It's just the idle air bypass inlet. You'll find the hose is a tight fit on the spigot...

The coolant expansion tank is a V6 stock fault... I'd get a couple in whilst they remain available...

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xantia_v6
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by xantia_v6 »

Congratulations on the acquisition.

I would say that the V6 brakes are quite sensitive to pad material. I use Mintex, Ferodo or TRW. Stay away from anything promoted as a performance pad, as they are usually too hard.

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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by elma »

I've decided not to buy a Citroen expansion tank. I'm going to buy an alloy equivalent for about £10 more. I'll be ordering it this afternoon as well as coolant, after I've measured it at work. The coolant in the car smells fishy and horrible. I have Friday booked off of work and will use the time to jack up each corner and do my own little pre mot.

I didn't realise my wheels are the famous centre less design, I will investigate making my own balancing attachment for garages to use if I have to. Good advice on pads Mike, I usually go Mintex. I definitely don't drive fast enough for racing pads and won't be buying flashy discs either. In fact I'll be sticking the ones on it in a lathe and flattening them off as long as they remain above the minimum thickness.

This gearbox cooler, can it be removed and flushed like an oil cooler? I've no lexia but am focused on the coolant system as my first task as I think it's the issue with the most potential to harm the car. This stop leak stuff should all come out with a good flush shouldn't it? So the agenda for now is 1. Coolant system. 2. Inspect steering and brakes 3. Welding. Everything else will be ignored with the exception of the forward switch on the drivers seat which is really annoying.

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white exec
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by white exec »

Good decision to replace the OE coolant tank if they're a known source of trouble, Elma.

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CitroJim
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by CitroJim »

white exec wrote:Good decision to replace the OE coolant tank if they're a known source of trouble, Elma.
Agreed :)

Yes, the gearbox cooler can be removed and reverse flushed James. It;'s a good idea too if any sort of stop-leak goo has been in the system - with the exception of Forte Stop leak - as the gearbox is sensitive to overheating and may be a contributory factor in its early demise...

My website will show how to remove the cooler... I've never tried it in-situ but it should be doable..

Just be careful that no coolant enters the gearbox via the open oilways as glycol and clutch friction material does not mix and can cause the friction material to disintegrate...

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Mandrake
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by Mandrake »

elma wrote:I've decided not to buy a Citroen expansion tank. I'm going to buy an alloy equivalent for about £10 more.
Can you share a link ? I'm sure there would be a few V6 owners interested in this and I certainly would have considered one if I was aware of it at the time! The genuine articles fail after as little as 20k, and mine has now done 15k since I bought the car and replaced the expansion chamber. :lol:
CitroJim wrote: Yes, the gearbox cooler can be removed and reverse flushed James. It;'s a good idea too if any sort of stop-leak goo has been in the system - with the exception of Forte Stop leak - as the gearbox is sensitive to overheating and may be a contributory factor in its early demise...

My website will show how to remove the cooler... I've never tried it in-situ but it should be doable..
Is it necessary to disturb the oil unions and remove the cooler to flush it ? It shouldn't be too hard to disconnect the coolant pipes and flush the water side in situ with a couple of suitable hoses ?

I know the one on the front goes directly down to the bottom corner of the radiator, not sure where the other one goes - perhaps back to the thermostat housing.

If it were me I think I'd try to flush it in place so as not to disconnect and disturb the oil pathway and risk contamination.

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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by elma »

Doesn't sound too bad then. I'll post links to the expansion bottle and degassed tanks in alloy when I have measured and chosen them. Alasdair already asked for a link on another thread. I've brought the Scenic to work so stupidly can't measure up today.

Work have given me 3 days bench time to strip the gearbox Paul is getting rid of so I need to arrange collecting that over the weekend if it suits him. They are also fine with me turning the discs on one of the lathes.

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CitroJim
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by CitroJim »

Yes, of course Simon, my bad! You can indeed flush the cooler without removing it :oops: Was clearly not thinking :roll:

The other hose disappears into the thermostat housing as you say...

James, over the weekend could be tricky for Paul and the gearbox collection... You will know why ;)

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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by elma »

Oh yes, any weekend at his convenience will be fine.

Im choosing an expansion tank and degasser tank now. I need to take the car to work, probably on Friday and measure up.

At the moment this is my favourite header tank as it has a level glass. There are cheaper options like this for about the same as the Citroen one. I don't like no sight glass though.

Degassers are plentiful, maybe this.

I'm yet to look closely at either though, no idea how big or what connections yet.

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white exec
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by white exec »

If spending that sort of money, I'd want to include a Low Coolant Level sensor and warning, too.
A breaker's yard would offer you a good selection of exp.tanks. Take a tape measure!
Toyota tanks don't split. Actually, XM tanks don't either, and they come with a sensor.

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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by elma »

I totally overlooked the coolant sensor, I definitely would like one of those. My car is a Mk1 so I have to add a wire to make the original warning lamp work. I suppose that means I should do the bottle and the wire at once. I shall start looking looking for an alternative PSA bottle so that the sensor fits without adaptions.

I've been contemplating the headlamp relay mod today also. This car has the worst lights I have ever used. They are fine on full beam but when I turn them down for another driver on an unlit backroad I'm having to prity much stop so I don't wander off road. Is it a simple case of using the original power wires to the lamps to control a pair of relays? Then wiring the lamps to the battery via the output side of the (fused) relays and making new Earths? I say relays as I assume there is one for full beam and one for dipped.

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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by xantia_v6 »

The only problem with the original header tank is that the weld (or glue?) at the seam fails with age, probably due to flexing with the internal pressure in the tank. I have always intended to try a repair by cutting the tank open at the seam, fitting suitable sealant (or a gasket), then reassemble with some positive pressure holding the seam together. My preferred fastening would be a number (about 20) little spring U clips spread around the seam.

For the headlamps, replace the bulbs first, the 20 year old bulbs have lost some filament material, and the filaments have probably drooped.

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daviemck2006
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by daviemck2006 »

I find my headlamps on my s1 activa acceptable on dip been. I have no idea if mine have the headlamp relay mod has been done, or what bulbs are in it.

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Stickyfinger
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Re: Elmas Xantia V6

Post by Stickyfinger »

carrot addiction Davie ?


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PS.
( I know the carrot/eyes thing was fake...)