Ds electrical problems
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  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Icon5 Ds electrical problems

    When I bought my car the interior lights the, rear window demister and the boot light were not working. I understand that this problem is not rare. Today I got the boot light working (wire come adrift from the switch) and checked the demisting section on the glass. It seems to be OK so I went looking for the wiring connections. The earth connection is working OK but I could not find any wire for the other, L/H, side. I assume that the connecting wire would have come out of the wiring loom near the level of the rear shelf. At that point a green wire appears and goes to power the boot light. All the wiring diagrams which I have seen seem to indicate a different take-off position for the demisting connection. Does anyone know exactly where I should look for this connecting wire?

    Problem number 2 is that the tacho, which used to be intermittent, is now not functioning at all. I swapped the original tacho, because its action was intermittent, for another one but that was no better. Since I was playing around with the wiring recently it stopped working altogether. I then checked the original tacho by connecting it directly to the coil and it works as normal. Which indicates to me that there is a problem with the wiring between the coil and the tacho. I notice that there was a wire which came out of the wiring loom near the coil and connected to the distributor terminal. Disconnecting this wire as a test when the tacho was working showed that it was the feed to the tacho. Strangely, none of the wiring diagrams that I have seen show this connection, but it appears to be an original item.

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    All bright ideas will be gratefully received. Don
    Citroen DS21 Pallas 1970 Renault 16TS 1976 Renault 5TS 1981

  2. #2
    BVH Roger Wilkinson's Avatar
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    By now, almost none of the rear window demisters work.

    Bad tacho behaviour can be caused by a faulty condensor on the distributor.

    Roger

  3. #3
    1000+ Posts daffyduck's Avatar
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    Was your car originally equipped with the demister or has the rear glass been changed?

  4. #4
    Now go make me a sandwich Hotrodelectric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tresbon2 View Post
    When I bought my car the interior lights the, rear window demister and the boot light were not working. I understand that this problem is not rare. Today I got the boot light working (wire come adrift from the switch) and checked the demisting section on the glass. It seems to be OK so I went looking for the wiring connections. The earth connection is working OK but I could not find any wire for the other, L/H, side. I assume that the connecting wire would have come out of the wiring loom near the level of the rear shelf. At that point a green wire appears and goes to power the boot light. All the wiring diagrams which I have seen seem to indicate a different take-off position for the demisting connection. Does anyone know exactly where I should look for this connecting wire?

    Problem number 2 is that the tacho, which used to be intermittent, is now not functioning at all. I swapped the original tacho, because its action was intermittent, for another one but that was no better. Since I was playing around with the wiring recently it stopped working altogether. I then checked the original tacho by connecting it directly to the coil and it works as normal. Which indicates to me that there is a problem with the wiring between the coil and the tacho. I notice that there was a wire which came out of the wiring loom near the coil and connected to the distributor terminal. Disconnecting this wire as a test when the tacho was working showed that it was the feed to the tacho. Strangely, none of the wiring diagrams that I have seen show this connection, but it appears to be an original item.

    All bright ideas will be gratefully received. Don
    For the defroster power, pull the c-pillar trim. It should be right behind that, clipped to the sheetmetal. I wouldn't be surprised the wire has degraded to the point of failure. I think it was made from the same base stock as the notorious '69 harnesses.If the defroster itself has failed, there is a kit available from England made specifically for the D sedans.

    With the tach, the wire leading to the coil should be a longish black wire with a red color sleeve, all inside a white sheath. You ask me why, I'll say "because Citroen". If your car is '71 or later, you can check it, but I don't think that will be your problem. If your car is a '70, it may or may not be the problem. My first check would be for a poor, broken, or corroded connection. You can also check continuity between the coil connection and the tach connection at the instrument cluster (yellow connector, black wire, no color sleeve). Move the engine compartment side of the wire around as you're checking- this will help you to see any breaks in the wire. If this all checks out, you'll probably need to get the tach rebuilt.
    The measure of your character isn't what you do when people are watching- it's what you do when they aren't watching.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hotrodelectric View Post
    For the defroster power, pull the c-pillar trim. It should be right behind that, clipped to the sheetmetal. I wouldn't be surprised the wire has degraded to the point of failure. I think it was made from the same base stock as the notorious '69 harnesses.If the defroster itself has failed, there is a kit available from England made specifically for the D sedans.

    With the tach, the wire leading to the coil should be a longish black wire with a red color sleeve, all inside a white sheath. You ask me why, I'll say "because Citroen". If your car is '71 or later, you can check it, but I don't think that will be your problem. If your car is a '70, it may or may not be the problem. My first check would be for a poor, broken, or corroded connection. You can also check continuity between the coil connection and the tach connection at the instrument cluster (yellow connector, black wire, no color sleeve). Move the engine compartment side of the wire around as you're checking- this will help you to see any breaks in the wire. If this all checks out, you'll probably need to get the tach rebuilt.
    I forgot to say that the C pillar trim is off (awaiting retrimming) and there is no sign of any wiring to the demister, which was original equipment. The demister itself looks complete and checks out OK with an ohm-meter. If all else fails I guess that I can run a new wire direct to the demister switch.

    You described the wiring for the tacho connection as mine is/was, except that mine was connected to the distributor itself. I think that this wire had break which sometimes connected, hence the intermittence. It is now completely broken. I have cut it back almost to the loom entry point without improvement. Perhaps I could connect a new wire to the appropriate fuse? The wiring generally in this car seems to be quite good, albeit some of the plastic covering has gone a bit hard.

    Thanks for your advice. Don
    Citroen DS21 Pallas 1970 Renault 16TS 1976 Renault 5TS 1981

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by daffyduck View Post
    Was your car originally equipped with the demister or has the rear glass been changed?
    The demister was original equipment - it still has the 'Citroen prefer Total' sticker.
    Citroen DS21 Pallas 1970 Renault 16TS 1976 Renault 5TS 1981

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Wilkinson View Post
    By now, almost none of the rear window demisters work.

    Bad tacho behaviour can be caused by a faulty condensor on the distributor.

    Roger
    Thanks Roger. I replaced the coil recently but the condensor looks to be very old, possibly the original.
    Don
    Citroen DS21 Pallas 1970 Renault 16TS 1976 Renault 5TS 1981

  8. #8
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    I removed the seat back (with difficulty as it had silicone sealed all around on the boot/trunk side) and there it was - the wiring to the demister (we don't need a defroster in this climate) and everything checked out, so it is quite possible that it does work. I must confess that I have never tested it before: I just assumed it would not work, based on previous experience with other French cars.
    Citroen DS21 Pallas 1970 Renault 16TS 1976 Renault 5TS 1981

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