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C5 Mk1 Suspension Supply Pipe Leak (Rear)

leak suspension pipe

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#1 aspire_helen

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Posted 29 December 2018 - 05:57 PM

Hi, xmas has come and gone, and this winter's fault has appeared.

The right/rear suspension supply pipe (between sphere and ram) has become corroded and is weeping slightly, but not dripping and the suspension works OK. The part is 5270QQ, about £60 from Citroen (a little less elsewhere). Reading other posts, it would appear the pipe can be replaced without a Lexia etc.

 

1. Would I be right in assuming that the system can be depressurised simply by cracking open the pipe unions and catching the fluid?

 

2. After fitting the pipe, would I be right in assuming that the car will self-bleed with the engine running, and topping up the fluid as necessary? 

 

3. What should be the car suspension setting for the job? for example

Car? - assume rear on stands?

Suspension setting? - highest as for jacking, or lowest?

Wheels? - hanging down or pushed up by jacks?

I hope my questions make sense.

 

Helen


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#2 paul.h

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Posted 29 December 2018 - 09:03 PM

Start with the suspension on low height as per Haynes which will put most of the LDS fluid in the tank. Disconnect the battery so the pump will not want to run and slacken the LDS tank cap to let out the air pressure so it does not force out any more fluid than necessary when opening the bleed screw. Jack up the rear and put axle stands under the body. If needed jack it up so a wheel can be removed. You will only need to depressure the rear suspension so this can be done by slackening the rear bleed screw and letting a bit of fluid out into a cup. The bleed screw looks like a brake bleed screw and will be approx in the middle, shown in the Haynes manual section10.2 and is 10mm. Unless you push one of the rear wheels up or the body is not supported (in which case it would drop on to the bump stops at the rear when the bleed screw is opened), only a little fluid is lost. You should then be able to change the pipe. I would think if you do not want to use the bleed screw you will get the same effect by just disconnecting the pipe.

 

When I replaced a rear strut gaiter I set the suspension to low and after disconnecting the battery and opening the LDS tank cap, I then jacked up the relevant corner and used axle stands. The wheel had to be removed to give access. Then I opened the bleed screw and hardly any fluid came out until I jacked up the axle but this had to be done with the bleed screw open otherwise it would not move. When everything was connected back up I took the suspension up and down a few times and everything was ok. Some LDS fluid was needed to top up the level - if you lose a lot you might need to do this before connecting the battery in case the pump wants to run. From Haynes section 16, it also says to turn the steering lock to lock in case any air got in there.

 

Our C5 has had a few leaks this year. The air con condenser had a tiny hole that let the refrigerant out needing a new one, dealer job due to the refrigerant. The radiator top hose had a slight leak out the top that I could not stop so had to be replaced, it was only a year old as well and there was nothing obviously wrong with it. The front right brake caliper leaked brake fluid needing a new caliper and pads and I also replaced the discs. The diesel cooler might have a slight leak since it gets a film of diesel on it so I am monitoring this since I can not see where it is coming from. To get to the cooler the side under tray has to be removed and one of the studs broke off but fortunately the tray is held well enough. The studs now all have some grease on them so they do not rust any more.



#3 aspire_helen

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 10:27 PM

Paul

Dont you just hate leaks?!!

Understood regarding rear suspension, thanks.

Regarding your other points.

1. Self-bleeding steering. From the earliest days I have had some radial slack in the steering column often resulting in a slight knocking when turning tightly at low speed. (eg in car parks). I was advised by Citroen to turn the steering wheel lock-to-lock 6 times to clear any air in the fluid pipework. It works, and I do it before every MOT.

2. A couple of years ago I had to repair a steering/suspension fluid leak in a low pressure/return rubber pipe inboard of the left front wheel. Easy enough

3. I have had great issues with sealing the top of the diesel filter housing. After one dealer servicing, the engine became covered with a deep film of diesel and dirt. It took some effort to clean the engine and trace the leak to the filter housing.

4. Oh, and I get some engine oil seeping into the air inlet pipework, likely from the turbo. But as performance and mpg are still very good I don't intend spending any time on it.

Helen


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#4 paul.h

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Posted 02 January 2019 - 11:26 AM

I will try the steering wheel 6 turns since our C5 has a slight knock in the steering wheel. I have been unable to find any play in the steering wheel/column/joints/rack so it could be air. Our previous C5 did not do it and this one has done it since we got the car 7 years ago and then was on 12000 miles so there would have been no wear in it and now it is only 32000 miles so still no wear (I hope).



#5 aspire_helen

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Posted 19 July 2019 - 08:38 PM

The pipe dripping got worse, so it needed replacing.  Ironically, the leak was due to unseen rust under the plastic heat-shrink sleeve. 

"protection".

 

I was able to slacken the coupling nut at the ram, but the pipe was corroded firm in the nut.  However, as I was replacing the pipe I decided to crimp and then saw through the pipe at each end approx. 2cm short of each nut. HINT - sawing through the crimp prevents swarf getting into the hydraulics.  The steel tube was too strong to crimp with pliers - it needed bolt cutters to apply enough force to crimp. This enabled a socket to be used on the coupling nuts. HINT - the nuts are 16mm AF; but the cut pipe necessitates a deep socket . However, a 10mm sparkplug socket is perfect. 

The coupling seals are a metal/rubber composite. Neither came out with the couplings, I had to tease them out of the ram/regulator with a woodscrew.

When refitting the new pipe I found it necessary to loosen one end (either the ram or regulator) to provide slack to enable the nut threads to be engaged properly. I chose to slacken the regulator mounting. I followed Haynes' bleed procedure, all OK.

 

 


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#6 paul.h

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Posted 20 July 2019 - 12:02 PM

Good to see your car is still going. Most cars at 18 years would have been scrapped by now.

 

When I was cleaning the rear brakes and greasing the caliper/suspension arm on our C5 I noticed on the hydraulic pipe a bit of corrosion. It was on the coiled section and since the pipe must be thin walled it might not last long so covered it with grease so it would not get worse. I will need to have a closer look at the section under the plastic sleeve you have replaced to see if that is ok.

 

I keep thinking what I would replace the C5 with but there is nothing as good with a large boot (estate) and self levelling suspension and weighs as much for towing our caravan. The later C5 with hydractive suspension also has an electric handbrake and tailgate but both can give expensive problems.



#7 paul.h

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Posted 22 July 2019 - 12:26 PM

I checked both rear sheres on our 2007 C5 and the pipes to them are rusting so to help stop it getting worse I have covered them in grease at the strut end.