Xantia Alternator
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  1. #1
    JBN
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    Default Xantia Alternator

    During the last week, the charging light has come on, very weakly and barely visible during the day. Then yesterday my wife had to walk home from the shopping centre as the car wouldn't start. i used one of those portable jump starters and got it started, drove it about 2 kilometres and it stopped.

    I charged the battery for about 20 hours (automatic battery charger that trickle charges a dead battery). The battery is now fully charged and the charging light is clearly on. OK.

    I presume that the alternator is not charging, I will test the output at the alternator tomorrow. The car has done about 135,000 kms. It recently had all the belts replaced by Jason and I expect he would have adjusted the belt correctly as the car has aircon and there is a special way to adjust it.

    So, I presume that the brushes are probably in need of replacement. Has anyone any clues on where to get brushes from?

    Regards

    John

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  2. #2
    Fellow Frogger
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    You will want to check the type of alternator as there would have been a few different alternators used. It may not even be the original unit anyway, so really the best thing is to look for the little info plate. It may have a 96... number, but that's most likely just the PSA reference number, not the type. If the light is always on, then it may be more than just worn brushes. Buying parts for what you have fitted is a bit different to just buying another alternator.
    Last edited by David S; 29th January 2013 at 12:04 AM.

  3. #3
    1000+ Posts robmac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBN View Post
    During the last week, the charging light has come on, very weakly and barely visible during the day. Then yesterday my wife had to walk home from the shopping centre as the car wouldn't start. i used one of those portable jump starters and got it started, drove it about 2 kilometres and it stopped.

    I charged the battery for about 20 hours (automatic battery charger that trickle charges a dead battery). The battery is now fully charged and the charging light is clearly on. OK.

    I presume that the alternator is not charging, I will test the output at the alternator tomorrow. The car has done about 135,000 kms. It recently had all the belts replaced by Jason and I expect he would have adjusted the belt correctly as the car has aircon and there is a special way to adjust it.

    So, I presume that the brushes are probably in need of replacement. Has anyone any clues on where to get brushes from?

    Regards

    John
    I'd be surprised if this mob don't have brushes or at worst brushes that can be modified (sanded down).

    Their focus is mainly Japanese product.

    http://www.jasoceania.com.au/pdf/Alt...er%20Parts.pdf (can take a while to load... be patient)

  4. #4
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Our alternator went capput in the CT Xantia at 150K km. The cause was believed to be a LHM slow leak from the HP pump (o ring) which is unfortunately located directly above alternator. We managed to get an after market alternator with same output for $650. THis may be worth considering if there has been a history of your HP pump leaking.

  5. #5
    JBN
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    Brilliant. On the CX, they put the alternator below the water pump. One day the water pump goes (with 5 belts pulling on one shaft why wouldn't it go?), As it is going, the seals leak, the water drips through a hole purpose built at the bottom of the shaft directly onto the alternator. Then a short while later the alternator need replacing.

    After the first time, I replaced both everytime the water pump died.

    Thankfully Napoleon lost at Waterloo so the Bureau de Bastarde shrunk down in size and became part of Citroen. It could have been worse.

    John

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    JBN
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    I did some basic tests on the alternator/battery, all with the engine running.

    1. Reading of 12.5 volts between battery posts.
    2. Same reading between lead collars on the positive and negative leads.
    3. Same reading between positive post and engine block.
    4. Same reading between positive (output) terminal on alternator and engine block.


    The charge warning light is still slightly on.
    The battery window has lost the green light and it shows black with a silver ring, saying that the battery needs charging (after 20 hours yeaterday). Battery is about 18 months old.

    At this stage, I got my wife to bump up the credit on her mobile phone, placed the portable jump starter in the boot and am currently hanging over the back fence perving on the next door neighbours wife, who is a doll, as thats the only thing that is giving me joy at the moment, vicarious joy unfortunately.

    John

  7. #7
    1000+ Posts robmac's Avatar
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    Provided the engine running was during your tests the voltages indicate the battery is not being charged.

    Alternators are economically repairable provided it's only brushes or possible a reg. Anything else generally turns the alternator into a door stop, paper weight or shot putt substitute.

    Personally, I would investigate the mounting similarities of Bosch alternator of Holden vt/vt/vn . These cost around $30 at a DIY wrecker and cheap to repair (if you bother).

    EDIT: The dash light with a dim glim can indicate a field circuit fault. Brushes most likely, field diode or internal regulator fault is less likely. Before doing anything check the bearings are OK. A combination of two faults puts the alternator in the above category.

  8. #8
    JBN
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    Thanks Robmac. I figured that the alternator wasn't working and at this stage might investigate a new one. In the UK they are advertised for about 81 pound. Being heavy the postage is probably about 59 pound. Lets say $220. The nice thing about that is its just unbolt and bolt on with no friggin around. Now I have to see if they are prepared to send it internationally.

    In the meantime, I'll just attach the little harness to my battery so that each night I'll just plug in my auto charger to keep the battery going until I get the new alternator.


    John

  9. #9
    1000+ Posts robmac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBN View Post
    Thanks Robmac. I figured that the alternator wasn't working and at this stage might investigate a new one. In the UK they are advertised for about 81 pound. Being heavy the postage is probably about 59 pound. Lets say $220. The nice thing about that is its just unbolt and bolt on with no friggin around. Now I have to see if they are prepared to send it internationally.

    In the meantime, I'll just attach the little harness to my battery so that each night I'll just plug in my auto charger to keep the battery going until I get the new alternator.

    John

    John,

    Since ithe alternator is just a belt tensioner atm you have nothing to lose by checking the brushes.

    It's 5 mins to pull off the back to check the brushes, sometimes easier if the brush box unbolts. Maybe it can be done on the car.

    Have a look first! Don't be like many mechanics and dealer and replace the entire assembly.

    Alternators are a simple device and it is definitely not rocket science to make basic repairs. Save yourself a few bob.

    EDIT: post some images... I'd be happy to advise.
    Last edited by robmac; 30th January 2013 at 09:06 AM.

  10. #10
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    Hi.Just go to your local Auto Elec -he will have something to suit-will be able to grind bush to fit & solder brush on if you do not have tools or ability to do yourself.

    More importantly will be able to dress up the commutator which if not done will cause premature wear of the new brushes.

    Add to that he would be able to test it after it is re-assembled.

    Bearings are pretty much standard [local bearing shop]so check same-I have found lots of new bearings that have almost no grease from new.seals can be prised out carefully using a small pick tool so you can then add some more grease.Best leave some 'breathing space' for the grease.


    Cheers.

    Pekay.

  11. #11
    Fellow Frogger!
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    The v6 is a much longer job to replace than the non turbo4
    Also the v6 alternator has what looks like specific mounts for the cit
    Just added this to save confusion if someone has the job to do on a v6
    Ps the alternator is $800 from citroen for the v6

  12. #12
    JBN
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    I am just awaiting freight charges from the UK. They asked for the VIN number to make sure they have the exact one. If the price is right, I'll go with the new one as the brushes and bearings will be OK.

    If the UK option becomes too expensive, I will get a used Peugeot 308 one as they are apparently the same PLUS they won't have been damaged by a weeping hydraulic pump.

    I don't know any auto electricians that don't absolutely hate Citroens, so thats the last option. The way they charge could make it the most expensive option. It also means that I have a car out of service until the alternator is repaired.

    Until then I'll just charge the car every night. My wife doesn't drive it very much. The aircon and blower fans don't work so there is no extra drain on the battery.

    John

  13. #13
    JBN
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    Eureka. Jason found me a used Peugeot 306 alternator - Mitsubushi no less. He threw out the old Xantia Valeo one which was pretty oily. Straight into the bin. The peugeot one is installed and charging. Being Mitsubishi, it is a far better long term prospect with parts being readily obtainable.

    My next job is to make a platform between the HP pump and the alternator with an absorbent surface (probably a femine napkin) to absorb any leaks. The bottom of the HP pump doesn't feely oily and we decided not to dismantle it and replace the seals.

    I can enjoy my weeks holiday and not worry about my wife having to learn how the recharge the Xantia's battery every night to have mobility.

    John

  14. #14
    JBN
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    Additional technical information to the above.

    1. There was no need to remove the HP pump.
    2. Being a Series 1 8V 2.0l automatic transmission VSX, the plastic box containing the suspension computer needed to be removed to allow access.
    3. The belt tensioner bolt (6mm Allen Key?) was undone to allow belt removal from the alternator.
    4. Refitting the alternator was fiddly.
    5. Belt refitted and tensioner bolt tightened. The tensioner is spring loaded and belt can't be overtightened on aircon models.


    Always a pleasure working on the Point and Pay principle - watching someone else do the dirty work so that ones own hands stay clean so that there are no greasy marks on the chequebook.

    John

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