Stalling C4 1.6hdi

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Doo
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Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

Evenin all.

Here's something I haven't seen before so I thought I'd ask if anyone has experienced any similar incidences as follows...

2007 Citroen C4 1.6hdi SX. Just rolled over to 90,000 miles. Well serviced and runs "only" BP Ultimate diesel (so no supermarket "no additives" diesel).

This is not (I am 100% confident) an engine issue, but a gearbox issue.

It is an auto clutch job with the flappy paddles and gear lever with R N D.

Just arrived home after a round trip of about 80 miles. Left empty to collect a caravan, towed it home. No issues, towed beautifully and it was lighter than our own caravan.

We were unhooking the van, disconnected the wires, pushing it back a few inches to clear the tow ball and I saw the rear bumper dip down as if someone was pulling the car forward... Then the engine stalled!! :shock:

The shock was due to no one being in the car, even though it was idling in N with the parking brake applied.

At first I grabbed my son and pulled him clear in case something untoward happened, then I noted the engine was definitely off so went to the drivers door and saw it was indeed still in Neutral! Under bonnet was hot, fan running and ambient temp around 23 degree's Celcius.

This is the first time we've experienced anything like this on this car as it has been absolutely epic reliable (I know, eh? :lol: ) so I am curious as to why the car would suddenly engage gear and stall it like a new driver :?

The gearbox does some slightly irritating things like occasionally it will graunch when engaging D as if the clutch hadn't been all the way engaged. But we put this down to French car gremlins... I'd imagine it does it once every 200 gear selections (perhaps more or less).

I did notice that when I added the tow bar the car seemed to "forget" how to change gear. That is to say, it didn't "like" trying to pull away in 1st so seemed to struggle the first few miles. However, after it had "learned" that we needed to hold the lower gear a little longer in order to maintain speed up a slope, it actually became easier to drive with the massive metal whale on the back.

But now, when empty (no trailer) it seems to want to hold onto the lower gear for longer than is necessary, especially if accelerating (not particularly hard) and requiring a flick of the right paddle to encourage less noise and more fuel economy. That's fine, I understand the leccy trickery has probably stored the "new" parameters.

But I wonder if the clutch is on it's way out? 8-[ We got the car with 60k miles and fully serviced including a new timing belt. There was no slippage issues, even on hard acceleration up steep hills with the van on the back, two adults & a child and all the cack required of a caravan holiday :-D

So that's about as much info as I have. Does anyone have an inkling as to why it may have "accidentally" engaged a gear and stalled itself even though it was most definitely in neutral??

I will be plugging in to see if there are any stored codes, but figured I'd ask first.

Thanks all.

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bobins
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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by bobins »

I have a feeling there's a clutch calibration procedure that can be uncdertaken with these. No idea if it's a once only item when a new clutch is installed, or a 'service' procedure.

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

bobins wrote:
25 Jul 2020, 11:28
I have a feeling there's a clutch calibration procedure that can be uncdertaken with these. No idea if it's a once only item when a new clutch is installed, or a 'service' procedure.
Why doesn't that surprise me :roll:

I was planning to remove the engine at some point to do the whole lot in a oner. That is to say, timing belt, timing chain, glow plugs and clutch. We would also tackle the gearbox oil change too as I have "heard" these are sealed for life. I don't agree with sealed for life nonsense :evil:

I have Lexi so would that have a clutch calibration setting?

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by bobins »

I'm not certain that yours would have the clutch calibration operation, but I know some of the semi-auto ones do/did as I've had to do it on one before. It's buried somewhere in the Lexia/Diagbox system, but don't ask me where !!

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by GiveMeABreak »

Pop your VIN up so I can see the exact system you have.

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

GiveMeABreak wrote:
25 Jul 2020, 13:13
Pop your VIN up so I can see the exact system you have.
VF7**************[VIN obfuscated, can be read by forum staff]

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by GiveMeABreak »

So you have the MCD 6 speed piloted manual box.

There are a stack of technical bulletins on this box, so the best thing is to get it hooked up and let us know any fault codes that come up.

I find it odd that it would be able to engage any forward gear without your foot on the brake first of all, as that is a safety feature.

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

GiveMeABreak wrote:
25 Jul 2020, 22:22
So you have the MCD 6 speed piloted manual box.

There are a stack of technical bulletins on this box, so the best thing is to get it hooked up and let us know any fault codes that come up.

I find it odd that it would be able to engage any forward gear without your foot on the brake first of all, as that is a safety feature.
We can slap it into either forward or reverse with feet out the door should we choose :lol:

However, it will not start unless a pied is on the pedal de frein :?

I really cannot fault this car otherwise! It has been the epitome of reliability since we bought it. 8-)

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

Evenin all. Well, we towed our caravan a whole 20 miles and reversed into the spot. Left the engine idling to run the fridge while I got the legs down and so on.

So around 15 minutes later I was about to sit in the car to park it when the engine suddenly cut out as if someone had stalled it by dumping the clutch again.

It actually lurched forward! Luckily I had the parking brake firmly set because I am certain the car would start creeping forward...

I have dug out our laptop so Lexia can interrogate the ECU, but not sure what I'm looking for. I know the clutch likely needs replacing soon as she's tipped over the 90k miles, but I suspect this is an oil/electronic issue as it was exactly the same stalling fault as previous and that was also after towing the caravan! It's almost as if the switch on the gear lever didn't tell the ecu it's been put into N so the (gearbox) oil being hot caused a stall.

Still looking to see if anyone else has had such an issue??

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by myglaren »

This is reminiscent of a very similar occurrence about two months ago.
Hopefully someone with a better memory will know the who and what and where the thread is.

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

myglaren wrote:
14 Aug 2020, 22:47
This is reminiscent of a very similar occurrence about two months ago.
Hopefully someone with a better memory will know the who and what and where the thread is.
Another update. Wife started the car today, selected D and the car wanted to drive away immediately! Normally, it operates like a centrifugal clutch where it won't move until you give it a little throttle.

I suspect something is afoot and requires some tinkering. I had planned to plug in today, but she had to meet a friend. :roll:

I looked up a clutch on GSF Car Parts and they have it down as a 5 speed manual, but it's a 6 speed semi auto... What to do :?

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by GiveMeABreak »

GSF, say no more.... databases are invariably wrong.

If you want official live PSA parts data I can help, but we do ask for a small £10 donation that will cover you for up to 2 years of parts info and parts diagrams, as we are also charged for this info now.

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

GiveMeABreak wrote:
16 Aug 2020, 15:03
GSF, say no more.... databases are invariably wrong.

If you want official live PSA parts data I can help, but we do ask for a small £10 donation that will cover you for up to 2 years of parts info and parts diagrams, as we are also charged for this info now.

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Thanks for that, I'm kinda up to my eyes at the moment, but I'll look into that. Not convinced the clutch is slipping as such because in top gear at 65mph there was absolutely NO slippage or loss of drive...

But I plugged in earlier and got some strange (to me) readings :?

Now maybe it's normal, but with engine running I did some live data checks and got a curious changing of reading of the clutch actuator position reference value and clutch actuator position....

on Diagbox, I had various windows when I went into each section (gearbox in this case) and in this instance Clutch Position:

Reference Gearbox Actuator Position in the gear selection shaft = 38mm
Position of the gearbox actuator in the gear selection shaft = 38mm
Reference gearbox actuator position in the gear engagement shaft = 26.61
Position of the gearbox actuator in the gear engagement shaft = 26.96 (but constant switching between this and 27.02)
Clutch actuator position reference value = 18.26
Clutch actuator position - 18.27 (but skipping between this and 18.33)

I cant explain why the values are changing when the engine is idling, but I imagine this explains the sometimes "dropping into gear and stalling" and sometimes when you select drive, the gear engages as if your foot was half way down on the clutch and you rammed it into gear, resulting in a massive GRAUNCH :shock:

There was only one fault recorded and it was glow plugs. I'm fond of the odd earth issue, but can't see why this would cause the gearbox faults (well, clutch actuator faults really) I'm physically experiencing (if not electronic values being recorded).

My thoughts are something is greasy inside the box or a doity gritty green mess on some of the leccy tronix plugs :wink:

Anyone care to comment?

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by Doo »

Doo wrote:
16 Aug 2020, 20:58
GiveMeABreak wrote:
16 Aug 2020, 15:03
GSF, say no more.... databases are invariably wrong.

If you want official live PSA parts data I can help, but we do ask for a small £10 donation that will cover you for up to 2 years of parts info and parts diagrams, as we are also charged for this info now.

Details below:
A response to your question by a forum admin will require detailed vehicle information that requires you to have made a current contribution to the Forum.
Donate

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Thanks for that, I'm kinda up to my eyes at the moment, but I'll look into that. Not convinced the clutch is slipping as such because in top gear at 65mph there was absolutely NO slippage or loss of drive...

But I plugged in earlier and got some strange (to me) readings :?

Now maybe it's normal, but with engine running I did some live data checks and got a curious changing of reading of the clutch actuator position reference value and clutch actuator position....

on Diagbox, I had various windows when I went into each section (gearbox in this case) and in this instance Clutch Position:

Reference Gearbox Actuator Position in the gear selection shaft = 38mm
Position of the gearbox actuator in the gear selection shaft = 38mm
Reference gearbox actuator position in the gear engagement shaft = 26.61
Position of the gearbox actuator in the gear engagement shaft = 26.96 (but constant switching between this and 27.02)
Clutch actuator position reference value = 18.26
Clutch actuator position - 18.27 (but skipping between this and 18.33)

I cant explain why the values are changing when the engine is idling, but I imagine this explains the sometimes "dropping into gear and stalling" and sometimes when you select drive, the gear engages as if your foot was half way down on the clutch and you rammed it into gear, resulting in a massive GRAUNCH :shock:

There was only one fault recorded and it was glow plugs. I'm fond of the odd earth issue, but can't see why this would cause the gearbox faults (well, clutch actuator faults really) I'm physically experiencing (if not electronic values being recorded).

My thoughts are something is greasy inside the box or a doity gritty green mess on some of the leccy tronix plugs :wink:

Anyone care to comment?


Hi again, been a busy few weeks :shock: I donated a bit...

So I'm in the middle of engine work on my own car and almost ready to drop the lump back in.

However, wife reports all is not happy in the world of her C4 :?

She states that several times the car has "shot forward soon as the engine starts!"

That's worrying because you have to push the brake pedal before it will turn over, so I have visions of someones car getting skelped or worse :oops:

The parking brake is pretty good so at least the car might not end up doing 90mph down the road :rofl2:

However, the fact the clutch engages soon as the engine fires means something is seriously wrong. But as above, there are NO obvious codes or warning lamps #-o

In my mind, it has to be mechanical. I recall my days of clutch changes where I would smear lithium grease on the main shaft to keep things smooth. I wonder if there is grot or rust on the splines or some such which would prevent a linear retraction of the clutch actuator... :-s

I haven't been in close to the box so I can't tell, but does anyone know if there is a removable cover so I could get a light in there and check?

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Re: Stalling C4 1.6hdi

Post by GiveMeABreak »

Ok, so here are the parts for the clutch system on this piloted C4: It's a 6-Speed Piloted Gearbox.
A) Clutch Control Master CylinderB) Clutch Parts
Doo Clutch A.PNG
Doo CLutch B.PNG
Just let me know the item number(s) from Table A or B if you need any part numbers.

As for the jumping on startup - obviously that is dangerous and needs sorting sooner rather than later. I don't have a solution as personally, I walk run in the other direction when I see one of these systems :shock:

I won't even start to advise what could be wrong as it is likely to be expensive whatever it is withe these as the labour is over 2.5 hours just to replace the actuator. But I would suggest you ring the guys at Euro Car Care (not to be confused with Euro Car Parts!). I know they have worked on these systems when they fiorst came out on the earlier C series models, so it may be worth having a chat and explaining the lunging issue on engine start.

But in the meantime, I strongly suggest you advise Mrs Doo to park on a runway for now just in case :-D