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Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble starting
http://www.c1oc.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=5297
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Author:  sy_lavery [ Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble starting

Hi all,

Wonder if any of you can suggest what might be causing my 55 Citroen C1 Vibe's troubles?

Occasionally, seemingly at random, three of the warning lights flicker. They don't light up, they just flicker. (It's the handbrake, power steering and ABS brakes lights - all of which are actually working absolutely fine!) Also, the needle on the speedo has a tendency to "bounce", for want of a better term; it jiggles up and down, briefly flicking up to as much as 10mph faster than I'm actually going, then immediately drops back down to my actual speed again.

These symptoms come and go. I can't detect any pattern. Sometimes it'll do this for ten minutes, then abruptly they'll stop and everything seems fine. Sometimes it lasts longer. Sometimes it does it right at the start of a journey, and sometimes it'll spontaneously start half way through.

It's been doing this on and off for a few weeks now.

Also (and possibly related?): When I turn the ignition, the engine doesn't always start up quite as strongly as it used to. Sometimes it seems absolutely fine, and sometimes it sounds as if it's struggling.

On a couple of occasions, the engine's failed to start at all. (All the dash lights come on like usual when I turn the key, but the engine either doesn't do anything, or makes a very weak noise.) On both occasions, when I tried it again a few hours later... it started absolutely fine.

I'd be interested to hear whether (a) anyone on this forum's had similar troubles, (b) what the cause was, and (c) how much it cost to sort out.

Thanks

Author:  Reedy [ Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

im not the only one whos had this problem then!


its all battery problems!


undo the earth strap and give it a good clean, or relocate it to the where the earth strap of the fusebox is, that will solve the flashing lights on the speedo etc, well did for me.

but might be worth getting a new battery aswel, i'll be getting a new one soon.


when you say it wont start are you turning the key and just nothing happens? I have been having that, been giving the starter motor a hit and it all starts again

Author:  Don Bernard [ Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:50 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

55 plate. New battery if its on its original.

Author:  sy_lavery [ Sat Oct 13, 2012 5:45 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

Thanks for replies, folks.

FYI, I had a new battery put in just last week. It doesn't seem to have made any difference.

I had a local auto electrical garage take a look at it this morning. Interestingly, they said they couldn't find any trace of a bad earth. The only evidence of a problem they could find was that "the alternator's power output was unusually low at low revs" (apparently it was fine at higher revs), and they suggested getting it replaced.

I think I'll try and get a second opinion from another garage, see if they tell me the same thing or not.

Author:  Don Bernard [ Sat Oct 13, 2012 5:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

Test the battery. Don't assume that cos it's new it's not dicky.

Author:  Doz [ Sat Oct 13, 2012 11:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

That does smell of crummy earth somewhere ....

Author:  csambrook [ Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

Doz wrote:
That does smell of crummy earth somewhere ....


Yep, stinks of earthing problems.

Assuming the problem started before the new battery was fitted then it's fairly reasonable to assume the new battery isn't the cause (I guess it was fitted in an attempt to solve the problem?)

I'm assuming that the problem with the dashboard lights is caused by the same thing as the starting issue (a reasonable assumption I think but be aware that assumptions like that can lead to bad diagnosis). The engine starting problems point to it being the earth strap from the negative of the battery to the chassis as that's the only earth which is common to both the starter and the dashboard.
Take off each end.
Clean all surfaces thoroughly, strap and chassis and battery terminals. Scrape off *all* rust and tarnish. Use switch cleaner if you've got any, vodka if you haven't.
Reassemble carefully.
Looking simply isn't good enough, you actually need to take apart and clean I'm afraid.

Author:  c.grex [ Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

Hi did you resolve this issue?

I have just bought a 2008 107 with the same issue. Been stood for a month or more and the battery was dead and wouldn't charge. I have fitted a new battery and cleaned the original earth lead up quickly, but lights still flicker some times.

is there any other plugs / earth points I could check?

Author:  Reedy [ Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

Remove and clean the earth strap, fixed it for me

Author:  c.grex [ Thu Nov 15, 2012 10:11 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Flickering dash lights, "bouncing" speedo, trouble start

reedy wrote:
Remove and clean the earth strap, fixed it for me



I'll give it a go tomorrow. I'll post my results back.

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