BX - More flow divider woes
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  1. #1
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Default BX - More flow divider woes

    Hi all,

    I came home tonight to see a puddle of LHM on the garage floor. At first I thought I'd filled up the tank a bit too much on the weekend but it seems it's all coming out of the flow divider again.

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    I recently had a reconditioned flow divider put in and was surprised that it didn't cure the stiff steering when cold, or the constant regulator ticking despite popular opinion saying it was the cause of the problem.

    Tell me, are the pistons meant to stay flush when there is no pressure in the system? Are the pistons supposed to move with varying suspension, steering and braking efforts? It seems they are stuck. Heres a rough picture. Damn it's hard to take a picture down there.

    I'm dreading having to get the flow divider taken out again.


  2. #2
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Fast cycling .... good accumulator ... No major leaks... Test the cut in / cut out pressure of the regulator, they may be to close togther.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
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  3. #3
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    I do have a major leak though, hence me asking the questions. Are the pistons meant to sit flush like on my previous flow divider or does it look like they are stuck again?

    You might not be able to see in the photo but the pistons are recessed in the barrel and there is LHM dripping out constantly.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by macquered
    Hi all,

    I came home tonight to see a puddle of LHM on the garage floor. At first I thought I'd filled up the tank a bit too much on the weekend but it seems it's all coming out of the flow divider again.

    I recently had a reconditioned flow divider put in and was surprised that it didn't cure the stiff steering when cold, or the constant regulator ticking despite popular opinion saying it was the cause of the problem.

    Tell me, are the pistons meant to stay flush when there is no pressure in the system? Are the pistons supposed to move with varying suspension, steering and braking efforts? It seems they are stuck. Heres a rough picture. Damn it's hard to take a picture down there.

    I'm dreading having to get the flow divider taken out again.

    (piccy cut)
    Brendan,

    I doubt a flow divider would cause fast ticking as it's before the pressure regulator. If there are issues with the pressure regulator onwards then that can cause heavy steering - for example I've noticed in my TZi that the power steering can loose oomph when the pressure regulator cuts in at engine idle - that's just the flow divider doing what it is supposed to do. If for any reason the HP system requires more flow then the steering is meant to lose flow before anything else. What this means is that your "stiff" steering is a symptom of something else, in my opinion.

    How much is it leaking? Flood or just a drop every few seconds or so? How often is the pressure regulator ticking? Have you tried putting the suspension up high to see if it changes? There's a good article somewhere that Bruce E wrote on diagnosing these things, I'll try and find it.

    Cheers,

    Barry.

  5. #5
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barryg
    Brendan,

    I doubt a flow divider would cause fast ticking as it's before the pressure regulator. If there are issues with the pressure regulator onwards then that can cause heavy steering - for example I've noticed in my TZi that the power steering can loose oomph when the pressure regulator cuts in at engine idle - that's just the flow divider doing what it is supposed to do. If for any reason the HP system requires more flow then the steering is meant to lose flow before anything else. What this means is that your "stiff" steering is a symptom of something else, in my opinion.

    How much is it leaking? Flood or just a drop every few seconds or so? How often is the pressure regulator ticking? Have you tried putting the suspension up high to see if it changes? There's a good article somewhere that Bruce E wrote on diagnosing these things, I'll try and find it.

    Cheers,

    Barry.
    Are you sure it's before the regulator ... Sounds strange... Everything should take it's hydraulic pressure from the output of the regulator .... Doesn't the hydraulic line from the output of the pump run directly to the regulator/accumulator assembly

    By major leak, I meant 'internal' leak, as there's something that is exhausting the pressure so it's running out of power steering. My immediate thought is usually dirty LHM and clogged filters. This car has had so much time and $$$$ spent on it I don't doubt someone, somewhere will have changed the LHM and cleaned the filters .... I'd be bloody stunned and shocked if they hadn't.

    Are you sure the accumulator is upto pressure ?? Possibly get UFO to check it for you at some stage.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    PS: Your flow devider problems... I've never had an issue with a flow devider, and never needed to even touch/remove one.
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    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    I could be wrong, but these "pistons" you're talking about, aren't they just end plate/blank offs?
    If you go to Citroentech which I think you're a member of, there should be a write up by a guy called "Vasco" who used to be in Portugal who did a detailed srip down and write up on a few things such as these and I think that if you can find that, you may find the answer to your problem.
    From memory, I think he actally used a dremel to cut a slot somewhere near this "piston" to release it and it could be pressed in. Haven't seen the article for a while but I'm sure I've got it right.
    In reference to the clicking, there's a guy in the UK who has this theory about seating the 2 ballbearings in the pressure regulator. When we did the series one up, I grabbed the regulator and with a brass drift and a ball pein hammer I tried the system of seating them out and whereas it used to click a fair bit before I seated them, it didn't afterwards.
    As Shane says, it sounds like an internal leak which these balls can do, so once reseated, the leak is cured.


    Alan S
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    Are you sure it's before the regulator ... Sounds strange... Everything should take it's hydraulic pressure from the output of the regulator .... Doesn't the hydraulic line from the output of the pump run directly to the regulator/accumulator assembly
    The output from the pump goes to the flow divider, and another pipe goes from the flow divider to the pressure regulator. This is why the steering has no effect on the high pressure side eg brakes etc.
    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    By major leak, I meant 'internal' leak, as there's something that is exhausting the pressure so it's running out of power steering. My immediate thought is usually dirty LHM and clogged filters. This car has had so much time and $$$$ spent on it I don't doubt someone, somewhere will have changed the LHM and cleaned the filters .... I'd be bloody stunned and shocked if they hadn't.

    Are you sure the accumulator is upto pressure ?? Possibly get UFO to check it for you at some stage.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    PS: Your flow devider problems... I've never had an issue with a flow devider, and never needed to even touch/remove one.
    I've see a few that leak eg my red BX & the white one from ebay a week or so ago, but none that leak badly. But, if there are problems from the pressure regulator on, then the first signs will be erratic power steering. This was the first symptom I had when I had a HP pipe leak - the power steering would be intermittent esp when cold & under brakes. It's just the flow divider doing it's job - there was nothing wrong with either the steering or the flow divider.

    Cheers,

    Barry.

  8. #8
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Thanks Barry,

    I'm going to wander up and have a look at the BX tonight .... Bloody weird that Citroen plumbed the hydraulics differently after all these years (every CX, DS, GS, etc.... I've seen goes, pump into regulator into priority/safety valving of some sort to distribute the high pressure from there) ...

    Who wants to put $$$ I'll come back tomorrow saying "I'll be dammed, the prority valve has been oozing LHM on my BX too

    seeya,
    Shane L.
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  9. #9
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barryg
    I doubt a flow divider would cause fast ticking as it's before the pressure regulator.
    Aah! I wonder if my previous flow divider was actually OK then? Bugger.

    Quote Originally Posted by barryg
    What this means is that your "stiff" steering is a symptom of something else, in my opinion.
    I hope so, because it looks like I'm chasing my tail with the flow divider.

    Quote Originally Posted by barryg
    How much is it leaking?

    A drop every few seconds or so, but enough to create an alarming puddle the width of the car in a day.

    Quote Originally Posted by barryg
    How often is the pressure regulator ticking?
    Every 4-5 seconds.

    Quote Originally Posted by barryg
    Have you tried putting the suspension up high to see if it changes?
    Yes, still the same frequency of ticking.

    Quote Originally Posted by barryg
    There's a good article somewhere that Bruce E wrote on diagnosing these things, I'll try and find it.
    Thanks. Is it similar to the following page? I was following this until it got to disconnecting pipes and then I got lost.

    http://www.geocities.com/MotorCity/6...q_sus_001.html

    Quote Originally Posted by shane
    This car has had so much time and $$$$ spent on it I don't doubt someone, somewhere will have changed the LHM and cleaned the filters .... I'd be bloody stunned and shocked if they hadn't. Are you sure the accumulator is upto pressure ??
    Yes I had the filters cleaned at a tech day late last year and the LHM replaced then, and also replaced a couple of months back when I had the flow divider swapped.

    The accumulator sphere was replaced late last year and I've had frequent ticking since then as well.

  10. #10
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Sounds like you have covered all bases.

    You problem is something is leaky badly internally, so exhausting any hydraulic reserves that would normally be used by the steering.

    If you have a look at the return lines at the reseviour, is one of them constantly gushing large amounts of LHM .... If so, this is where your problem is (not the reseviour, but whatever is leaking internally).

    What is always suspect on a BX is the brake valve, how quickly does the rear of your BX drop when the motor is switched off ... Hours, minutes or seconds

    The priority valve leak will need to be fixed, but I IMO this will NOT fix your power steering problem.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    PS: Are you sure the new accumulator sphere wasn't flat .... We don't know how long it was sitting on a shelf for. Did UFO test it ??
    'Cit' homepage:
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    '78 GS1220 pallas
    '92 Range Rover Classic ... 5spd manual.

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  11. #11
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    If you have a look at the return lines at the reseviour, is one of them constantly gushing large amounts of LHM .... If so, this is where your problem is (not the reseviour, but whatever is leaking internally).
    I'll have a look tonight, ta.

    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    What is always suspect on a BX is the brake valve, how quickly does the rear of your BX drop when the motor is switched off ... Hours, minutes or seconds
    Within about 10 minutes I'd say.

    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    PS: Are you sure the new accumulator sphere wasn't flat .... We don't know how long it was sitting on a shelf for. Did UFO test it ??
    I guess it's just one of those things that you assume, that something is in good working order when you buy it new and off the shelf. We haven't had it off again to test it because it was assumed to be working OK.
    Last edited by brenno; 1st September 2005 at 04:24 PM.

  12. #12
    1000+ Posts George 1/8th's Avatar
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    Hey Brenno,
    the following was written.....

    Originally Posted by barryg
    How often is the pressure regulator ticking?


    Every 4-5 seconds.

    If this is true, and the reg is switching on the HP pump and topping it up this frequently, then it doesn't matter at all if you changed the regulator sphere/accumulator sphere recently...it's still not right.

    Either that or you have such a HUGE internal leak elsewhere that the system is really struggling to maintain pressure.

    I'd start by getting the sphere tested...so as to eliminate it from the equasion. Just do a temporary swap with a different sphere to see what it does. If it's the cause ( the pump should not switch in nearly so often as this) then you have it half solved.
    The leak would worry me, whatever it is...it has to be changed/repaired. See if there is a split return hose leaking down over the pressure divider, making it look like it's leaking.
    Also, see about swapping the divider for one from a wreck, to see if that helps.
    If your pump has been working this hard I'd be surprised if it has not developed a crack in it's main body.
    cheers....good luck...george 1/8th.

  13. #13
    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by George 1/8th
    Hey Brenno,
    the following was written.....

    Originally Posted by barryg
    How often is the pressure regulator ticking?


    Every 4-5 seconds.

    If this is true, and the reg is switching on the HP pump and topping it up this frequently, then it doesn't matter at all if you changed the regulator sphere/accumulator sphere recently...it's still not right.

    Either that or you have such a HUGE internal leak elsewhere that the system is really struggling to maintain pressure.

    I'd start by getting the sphere tested...so as to eliminate it from the equasion. Just do a temporary swap with a different sphere to see what it does. If it's the cause ( the pump should not switch in nearly so often as this) then you have it half solved.
    The leak would worry me, whatever it is...it has to be changed/repaired. See if there is a split return hose leaking down over the pressure divider, making it look like it's leaking.
    Also, see about swapping the divider for one from a wreck, to see if that helps.
    If your pump has been working this hard I'd be surprised if it has not developed a crack in it's main body.
    cheers....good luck...george 1/8th.
    Sorry George, I didn't realise you had posted in this thread. I intend to get the sphere tested within the next few weeks, even though it is a new sphere.

    The flow divider that I had recently put in was supposedly reconditioned by a a member of the NSW Citroen Car Club but it looks like it is in worse condition than the one that I had taken out. This has just been confirmed today by my mechanic.

    The hoses all look fine.

    This leaves me in a bit of a strange position. I'm trying to sell the car, so I can't see the benefit in spending huge amounts to try various replacement parts, especially when it comes to replacing parts a second time. It looks like I'm going in circles, which is not fun.

  14. #14
    Fellow Frogger! Jack Z's Avatar
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    The flow divider that I had recently put in was supposedly reconditioned by a a member of the NSW Citroen Car Club but it looks like it is in worse condition than the one that I had taken out. This has just been confirmed today by my mechanic

    But I thought it was only "Citroen Specialists" that made mistakes, misdiagnosed or did dodgy work....??? .
    BX TZI Hatch
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  15. #15
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Z
    The flow divider that I had recently put in was supposedly reconditioned by a a member of the NSW Citroen Car Club but it looks like it is in worse condition than the one that I had taken out. This has just been confirmed today by my mechanic

    But I thought it was only "Citroen Specialists" that made mistakes, misdiagnosed or did dodgy work....??? .
    Gee's Jack,

    give it a break... If you don't ever want a club member to try and help you out ... Feel free to buy new parts and pay to have them fitted.

    It's always a risk when you fit rebuilt parts that they may leak ... It's probably had new 'O'rings put in it. And it's no leaking from the body or something. All you need to do is take it back and I'm sure it'll be exchange (yeah I know you need to remove and refit it ... If this had happened with a 'specialist' mantained car we wouldn't care ... As long as they honoured there warranty).

    Do you ever give it a break ?? I'll make sure none of us ever try to help you just incase it doesn't work out

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    'Cit' homepage:
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    '78 GS1220 pallas
    '92 Range Rover Classic ... 5spd manual.

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  16. #16
    Fellow Frogger! Jack Z's Avatar
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    Thanks Shane...

    I'll make sure I don't ask...

    Bottom line is ... it cuts both ways.. we are all human we all make mistakes we all get it wrong...

    if some chose to be so viscious and vindictive then others will respond... didn't mean to hit a nerve... sorry!

    Have a great weekend...
    BX TZI Hatch
    BX TRI Hatch
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