Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

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Mantisman
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Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Mantisman »

Hi all,

Just wondering if anyone can help with this Hydractive suspension problem:

My 2008 C5 Tourer Exclusive (automatic) suspension was rock hard and obviously not working properly. My indie mechanic said it was the front spheres that needed replacing. He determined this by going round the four corners of the car and rocking the suspension and noticed that the front drivers side was rock hard and didn't move at all. I got 2 new spheres for the front left and right which he fitted on Saturday. When I picked the car up, it did seem to be better but I've just been out in it now and it's gone back to being rock hard again. The front drivers side doesn't move at all when I push down on it. The suspension is at the correct height

I know there are other spheres at the front on this model. Could it be one of the other spheres that's causing it to be hard at the front right?

The car vin no is VF7**************[VIN obfuscated, can be read by forum staff].

It would be great if someone can help. I've spent so much money on it over the last few months! If I can just get this sorted, it might be good for another couple of years.

Regards,

Ian
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by GiveMeABreak »

It very likely won't be the front hydraulic block (centre Sphere) as even if that was non-functional, it would equate to 'Sport Mode' and that is not rock hard. You likely have another issue, like a faulty strut, an air lock in the hydraulic system or a faulty BHI.

Does the car lower and raise when adjusting the height of the suspension using the electronic control? Have you raised it up fully and lowered it fully?
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Marc
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Mantisman »

Hi Marc,

Thanks for your quick reply. The front right strut was just renewed late last year as it was leaking badly.

I've had loads of problems with it dropping at the front and refusing to come back up again but since it burst a suspension pipe and lost all of it's LDS a couple of months ago and was repaired, it hasn't dropped at the front at all.

I'll certainly try as you suggested and raise it to it's maximum height and then lower it down and get back to you.

When you say a faulty "BHI". What actually is that? It sounds expensive!

Regards,

Ian
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by GiveMeABreak »

The BHI is the Integrated Hydraulic Interface - it controls the electrovalves for the hydraulic system.

But thinking about it on this vehicle the there are lowering and raising electrovalves, and these work on the rear and front suspension, so if there was a problem with the front, I would expect that the front would not lower or raise. So in other words it can't affect only one side of the front.

I suggest you try the bleeding procedure in case your mechanic failed to do this:
  • Start the engine.
  • Wait for the vehicle height to stabilise.
  • Place the suspension height control in the "HIGH" position.
  • Place the suspension height control in the "LOW" position.
  • Turn the steering slowly from lock to lock in each direction 2-3 times (but do not hold the steering at the extremes).
  • Stop the engine.
  • Check the LDS fluid level.
On the lowest suspension setting the level should be between the 'a' & 'b' marks:
LDS MK III.PNG
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by GiveMeABreak »

If the suspension is hard I can only put that down to an air lock or a faulty sphere with no gas in it (was it a brand new or used sphere and how long has it been on the shelf)? As mentioned above, if the suspension is raising and lowering on command, then it won't be the electrovalves in the BHI.
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Mantisman »

Hi Marc,

I've just done as you said raising it right up and then down to it's low setting. I then turned the steering from lock to lock and back to the centre. The LDS level looked good. I then set it to it's normal height and the right front suspension is still hard with no movement.

I got the spheres from Ebay and it said they were new. Here's the link - https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/163898528507

If I take it back to my indie guy, will he easily be able to tell if it's s faulty right front sphere?

Regards,

Ian
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by GiveMeABreak »

Well I would've given that a wide berth - for a start there's nothing to state which C5 they are for - the MK I, MK II or the X7 MK III. There's nothing to say which spheres these are (Corners, Rear Centre, front centre etc.) nor what pressure these are no equivalent part numbers. The spheres differ for each vehicle and they'll have different pressures.

So heaven knows what he has sent you, but I'd send them back and tell them there's no gas in them as they're rock hard.

For your information and for a 2.0 HDi DW10BTED4 engine the following is correct:

DW10BTED4 Engine

Front Corner Spheres for Saloon / Estate
50 Bar

Rear Corner Spheres
Saloon: 40 Bar
Estate: 50 Bar

Front Accumulator Sphere Saloon / Estate
70 Bar

Rear Accumulator Spheres
Saloon: 44 Bar
Estate: 52 Bar
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Mantisman »

Hi Marc,

I did message them before I bought them saying I needed front spheres for an X7 MkIII and gave them my reg and vin number. They came back and said I needed the 50 bar spheres so they seemed to know what they were doing. I've been back in touch with them and they've said they'll replace them if they're faulty.

I'm taking the car back up to my indie mechanic on Thursday and he's going to check the pressure in the 2 new ones. I'll let you know the outcome.

Thanks so much for your help. It's much appreciated.

Regards,

Ian
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by GiveMeABreak »

No worries - best of luck. When there's no gas, you have no suspension apart from the air in the tyres. The LDS fluid is not compressible, so if there is no nitrogen gas inside the sphere membranes (which is compressible), the LDS fluid has nothing to push up against except the cylinder casing, giving no springing and the rock hard effect.
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by GolfMk1Vr6 »

I have the same issue after 6/7 spheres regassing, the only difference is that sometimes the suspension works fine, soft as before and sometimes very stiff, especially on front. I'm keep searching for the problem.
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by GiveMeABreak »

I'm still not convinced about the re-gassing of theses types of spheres (and officially noted as
Recharging the "slimline" spheres and accumulators with nitrogen is not possible.
- there would appear to be more problems with these than people who have just replaced with originals.
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Mantisman »

Hi all,
My indie mechanic checked the pressure in the new sphere and it's fine. When he put it back on, the suspension was working fine. I've got the car back now and the suspension seems normal but worried it will just go back to being hard again. My indie guy says the only other thing it could be is the strut but this was renewed in January of the year. Do you know if it's possible for a strut to intermittently "stick" resulting in the suspension being rock hard?
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Mantisman »

The latest update is that it's now gone back to being rock hard again on the front right hand side. Now that the sphere has been checked and the pressure is good, do you think it's the strut even though it's only 4 months old?
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Kees »

You make it yourself difficult you are looking in the wrong direction.
Just replace the center sphere!!
This one is responsible for the soft/smooth ride!!
Look at my answer for the c6 owner, i trying to explain why it's important to change not only the corner sphere's.
Greetings,
Kees.
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Re: Citroen C5 Tourer 2008 X7 Exclusive - Suspension still rock hard after new front spheres

Post by Mantisman »

Hi Kees,

Thanks for your reply.

I thought the front centre sphere was for the "Sport" setting. Would a faulty centre sphere cause only the front right hand side suspension to go hard?

Regards,

Ian