"Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

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mariusblk
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"Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

I own a Citroen C4 Picasso 2010 155 THP for a while and since I bought it, about 2 months ago, I get the error "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" which so far has not affected the functionality or bothered me with anything. The error occurs 1-5 minutes after starting the car and I have not noticed any other problems so far. Although I have been to a service near me, they measured the voltage at the battery terminals and the amperage was correct, the battery charging is done correctly and I have not noticed any problems. They also cleared the error but it reappeared.

The other day I felt the need to turn on the air conditioning due to the temperature and it was blowing very cold air until the above mentioned error occurred, the cold air disappeared and the air it was drawing from outside was being vented through the vents.

Has anyone else experienced this problem? Is there anything I could check or do before I get it serviced again?
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GiveMeABreak
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by GiveMeABreak »

If the battery was disconnected at some point during the checks, then it can on some models take some time for the Climate Control ECU to calibrate itself. But if you suspect that enough time has lapsed since reconnecting the battery, it probably needs a diagnostic to see if there is an issue with the charging circuit or the Battery Charge Status Unit or anything else.

Pop up the codes here if you have any.
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Marc
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

GiveMeABreak wrote: 05 May 2023, 16:15 If the battery was disconnected at some point during the checks, then it can on some models take some time for the Climate Control ECU to calibrate itself. But if you suspect that enough time has lapsed since reconnecting the battery, it probably needs a diagnostic to see if there is an issue with the charging circuit or the Battery Charge Status Unit or anything else.

Pop up the codes here if you have any.
What do you mean by "enough time"? When i bought the car about 2 months ago it had the error and i thought that a drive on the highway would fix it since the car hadn't been driven for a while. This was not the case, the error is still there although it was serviced 2 weeks ago for a fuel pump problem and I think they disconnected the battery because the clock and date were reset. Since then i made like 3-400 km at max.

Unfortunately, i do not have error codes, the kept the codes for them :( and did not share.

PS: the error is there every time no matter what i do, even if the air conditioning is off - i really don't get the point :(
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GiveMeABreak
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by GiveMeABreak »

Ok, so it's likely to be something else.

Battery charging faults can also be the alternator starting to fail (which may be intermittent), so after a time if the alternator reduces output, the vehicle's battery will start to drain and then you may get the message about the charging fault (until the alternator picks up again). So may be worth checking it out.
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by xantia_v6 »

I have no evidence that it is connected to your problem on a C4 Picasso, but on the 308 with the same engine, failure of the turbo coolant pump blows the fuse that also powers the alternator control module, causing some confusing symptoms. Do you hear the pump running for a few minutes after shutting off the (hot) engine?
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

xantia_v6 wrote: 05 May 2023, 18:19 I have no evidence that it is connected to your problem on a C4 Picasso, but on the 308 with the same engine, failure of the turbo coolant pump blows the fuse that also powers the alternator control module, causing some confusing symptoms. Do you hear the pump running for a few minutes after shutting off the (hot) engine?
I drive this car from home to work in the morning, kids at kindergarden, wife to workplace, let's say about 15 km and back home for another round. After each stop i swich off the engine and is silent dead, i can't hear any noise. Tomorrow i will make a 250 km drive on the highway and i'll keep you updated.

Thanks and drive safe.
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

GiveMeABreak wrote: 05 May 2023, 17:37 Ok, so it's likely to be something else.

Battery charging faults can also be the alternator starting to fail (which may be intermittent), so after a time if the alternator reduces output, the vehicle's battery will start to drain and then you may get the message about the charging fault (until the alternator picks up again). So may be worth checking it out.
Maybe you are right but after all this time driving the car if there was a problem with the alternator don't you think that the battery would drain dead? It starts smooth, the voltage is in good parameters. It's wired. Fuses not checed but i think if there was a failure on them i would have noticed a missbehaviour, in fact i did with this error that stops cold air pumping after it pops into my screen.

Again many thanks for yoir kind answers.
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by GiveMeABreak »

I was just thinking that the alternator may be failing - so intermittent output and this may be why the messages are only appearing when this happens or after a time when it detects the battery is not charging during these periods.

It really would help if you could get hold of the fault codes to be honest.
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by xantia_v6 »

From memory, the turbo coolant pump should run if the coolant has got to 90°, so does not need to be a very long run.

The original pumps are very unreliable, on BMW and Mini they could cause an engine fire when they failed and there was a recall to replace them all.

PSA cars had a smaller fuse and no recall.

Try to find the fuse and check it. On the 308 it is a 5A fuse on the interior fuse board.

There is no specific fault code for pump failure or fuse, so diagnosis is not obvious.
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

@GiveMeABreak - I really appreciate your help and i'll try to get the error codes on Monday at the service point, hope for a simple solution :)
@xantia_v6 - i will look into it, thanks for the tip
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by Peter.N. »

You can check the alternator by connecting a voltmeter across the battery, should read about 14.4 volts with the engine running. If you can connect the meter to the cigarette light socket you can watch the voltage while the fault is present.

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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

Battery voltage is good also usb charger and cigarette socket with error present on dashboard. The problem with AC was solved for the moment, needs more testing and i'll keep you updated with the problem. Also the battery light from dashboard is gone for the moment.


BUT, i got from the service guy the picture with the following errors. He says he only found 1 L of oil as a week ago we changed the gasket on the oil pan and filled up with necessary oil after. More precisely, the car lost about 3 litres of oil in 7-800 km done in mixed mode, city + highway.

My next question was "But isn't there an oil sensor on the car to warn me about the low volume?" The answer was simple: "NO", C4 Picasso 2010 does not have oil sensor, the error pops when the level is critical, and when you see the warning you should immediately stop, check the oil level and fill it on the spot. Is this true?

His next thought was segmenting the engine. What should i check for now?

These is a photo with the errors:
3.jpg
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

Update, air conditioner not working, error is still there same behaviour. I was fooled because we had some cold days here in my town. Also they told me that the problem is fixed but is not.

What should i do now? Should i go to a dedicated Citroen dealer for a full diagnisis? Do you think an authorised dealer can help me with this problem?

Many thanks and please advise me as i don't want to spend money on "useless repairs"
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by mariusblk »

New update, alternator working, battery in good shape this means what? In my opinion is a software problem that needs to be coded or there is too much work to be done, check every wire and connection until you find the spot?

I just have a thing that bothers my sleep every night with weird questions. What can cause a battery error at ~3 minutes after the engine starts? Is there a status check (error check) on the car computer 3 minutes after i switch the key? This is happening every time, no matter how many electrical consumers i use, even if the car is just started or running on the highway. The error is there after ~3 minutes. If i stop the car i can make it another 3 minutes round, and so on. Did some stops and the 3 minute problem got me, what was i thinking when i bought a 13 year old car with a piloted manual gearbox? But as i trend to be a techy guy i want to know the cause and effect, so anyone faced something similar?

Should a Lexia diagnosis clear my mind and let me sleep with a clear explanation? I am asking you this because i have to drive ~150km to the nearest dedicated Citroen service.

So let's review, car starts great and drives great for 3 minutes, after that the only change i have seen is the AC that stops cold air (i assume that when the error pops the computer shuts down the big consumer guys). So no radio stops or sound, no display stops, no headlights dimmed, no other errors, i can play with the panorama button just like no problem was there, just like a normal car but without cold air blowing, just air, and as far as days are getting hotter all i can get is hot air :( ...

As you can see below this is a screenshot of every restart of the car, it takes ~3 minutes to get the error on dashboard (1st timing i just forgot to tap phone :) )
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Re: "Battery charge or electrical supply faulty" - air conditioner problem?

Post by xantia_v6 »

You did not mention whether you diagnosed the (apparently) non functional turbo cooling pump.