Groaning Xantia.
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  1. #1
    Member dom19's Avatar
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    Default Groaning Xantia.

    My Xantia occasionally makes a groaning sound after I've stopped & got out of it. Its a 97 SX so its the basic model. I've watched to see if the car is rising or descending when it does it but it seems to be stationary. The noise comes from the front some where. Could it need some rubber grease on the front struts? Any suggestions would be helpful.
    Dom

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    Xantia SX 1997
    Toyota Spacia 2000

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    Quote Originally Posted by dom19
    My Xantia occasionally makes a groaning sound after I've stopped & got out of it.

    How heavy are you?

    Chance.

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    UFO
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    Give the car a quick hydraulic workout first. That is a few cycles of full up and full down. This may reduce the incidence/noise. If yes, then some silicone grease on the strut rams will be useful.

    Others most likely will add more information and wander wildly off topic (around here - never )
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    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    That's funny,

    my wifes Xantias makes insessantly contant, unrelenting groaning and complaining noises whenever I drive that

    Seriously, it'll be the front struts are a bit dry, try pulling back there boots and greasing the shiny part of the ram when the car is on high.

    seeya,
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    Member dom19's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chance
    How heavy are you?

    Chance.
    Ha Ha,
    Dom
    Xantia SX 1997
    Toyota Spacia 2000

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    Member dom19's Avatar
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    Thanks Shane, I thought I was heading in the right direction but it helps to have it confirmed.
    Dom
    Xantia SX 1997
    Toyota Spacia 2000

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    Fellow Frogger! Trixie's Avatar
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    Ours did that most of the time; as the front settled a little once you got out, a 2-3 sec groan. I think it started when the car was 3 years old or so. Never worried about it.
    John

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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleChevron
    Seriously, it'll be the front struts are a bit dry, try pulling back there boots and greasing the shiny part of the ram when the car is on high.

    seeya,
    Shane L.
    That'd be the first thing I'd check too, but there is also another unexplained source of groaning that some peoples Xantias (including mine) occasionally do which can't be accounted for by the struts, which I don't think anyone has positively identified yet.

    Every now and then (very rarely) I'll get out of mine and the height will adjust down as normal (nice and smoothly) and then it will let out a continous "groaning" sound from the front somewhere which can last as long as 20-30 seconds (!) even though the height has stopped adjusting and there is no visible movement.

    When this happens even bouncing the front suspension by hand doesn't stop the groaning....so I would have thought that eliminates the struts as the source of the groan. (I keep the struts well lubed anyway)

    A theory some people hold is that it could be the anti-sink valve oscillating near the pressure at which it is about to close, and that if the height corrector happens to be correcting the height downwards at the time the anti-sink valve is closing it causes the valve to oscillate/buzz.

    Seems a reasonable theory to me although I have no idea how to prove it especially when it happens so infrequently...

    I've also seen it happen a couple of times on Dad's non-Hydractive Xantia as well, so it doesn't seem to be related to Hydractive 2. (Both cars have anti-sink though)

    Dom: how is the condition of your accumulator sphere ?

    Regards,
    Simon
    Last edited by Mandrake; 26th January 2006 at 11:13 AM.
    1998 Xantia Mk2 V6 Auto Exclusive

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    Member dom19's Avatar
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    Simon, I'll try some grease on the struts first to see if that changes anything. It is a very random event. Your theory on the antisink valves may also be correct as the car seems to be neither going up or down when it makes the noise. as for the accumulator sphere I've no idea on its condition. I've only had the car for two months. The previous owner had it regularly serviced by Denton Christie & I was told it had new spheres within the previos 12 months. Car has only done 80k klms. Is there any way to check condition of spheres without removing from the car?
    Dom
    Xantia SX 1997
    Toyota Spacia 2000

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by dom19
    Simon, I'll try some grease on the struts first to see if that changes anything.
    Even if its not the cause you should end up with a smoother more stable ride. Just make sure the car is supported with jacks while you've got your hands under the wheel arches...
    It is a very random event. Your theory on the antisink valves may also be correct as the car seems to be neither going up or down when it makes the noise. as for the accumulator sphere I've no idea on its condition. I've only had the car for two months. The previous owner had it regularly serviced by Denton Christie & I was told it had new spheres within the previos 12 months. Car has only done 80k klms. Is there any way to check condition of spheres without removing from the car?
    Dom
    The reason why I suggested checking the accumulator is that if the accumulator was flat it would cause the anti-sink valves to close much sooner after turning off the engine than it otherwise would - perhaps even before you get out of the car if you sit for a time before getting out.

    A rule of thumb test for checking the accumulator is to open the boot, (boot empty) idle the engine while you're out of the car until the height is stable at the normal height, then through the window turn off the engine and immediately sit in the boot.

    If the car lifts you back up within 30 seconds the accumulator is probably ok. If nothing happens its probably faulty.

    If its a Hydractive 2 model there can be other causes for a seeming fail of this quick test however. And the test relies on the rear suspension being soft like it should be.

    Regards,
    Simon
    1998 Xantia Mk2 V6 Auto Exclusive

  11. #11
    Tadpole
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    I reckon it's the handbrake taking up the strain. Beware, they have been known to move when front pads are worn.

  12. #12
    1000+ Posts Ken W's Avatar
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    I think I saw some info on this but it might take me a while to find it. It has something to do with the antisink valves, suspension pressures and accumulator pressures. If you get a specific arrangement of this (not sure exactly what it is now but will try to find it) then a hydraulic pipe on the passengers side will vibrate producing the noise. Apparently it can be cured by restraining the pipe more firmly.

    Will go searching.

    Ken W

  13. #13
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    Hi Ken,

    Yes I remember the reference you're talking about - it was discussed on the andyspares forum (now frenchcarforum.co.uk) some 4 or 5 months back, where one poster reported there was a dealer modification to clamp the pipe you mention more firmly to prevent it vibrating against the body.

    However there was a lot of debate in that message thread as to whether a vibrating pipe could really be the source of the noise, and as far as I remember nobody there had tried the mod or had the exact details of which pipe it was.

    Even if the pipe is clamped more firmly, if the anti-sink valve chattering is indeed the source of the noise (which I believe it is) then surely the valve will make a noise by itself whether the pipe is firmly clamped or not. It might make it a bit quieter though.

    (On further reflection, maybe it is like an unsupported under house water pipe that oscillates and chatters with the force of the water when the tap is open a certain amount ? In that situation clamping the pipe near the middle of the unsupported section does indeed stop it oscillating....hmm....)

    I think you're right about the accumulator sphere too - in the times that mine has groaned it has been in situations where the height corrector wants to make a downwards height correction (after removing weight from the car) but the anti-sink valve is just on the verge of closing due to the accumulator pressure dropping below suspension pressure.

    A flat accumulator sphere would increase the likelyhood of this scenario several fold.

    It seems that the anti-sink valves close quietly if the height corrector is not in operation at the time the valve is closing. (Which is 99% of the time)

    My car has a new accumulator sphere, BUT it has an internally leaky front H/A electrovalve which causes the regulator to cycle every 15 seconds or so, so there is reasonably rapid loss of accumulator pressure after turning the engine off, so I can see why this would happen.

    Another clue that it is related to the accumulator pressure and the anti-sink valve is that if you lift the suspension up to full height, turn off the engine, and a short while later (30 seconds to several minutes depending on the condition of the accumulator etc) set the height down to normal, as much as 1 out of 2 times it will give a bit of a groan, but it wont do it when the engine is running...

    If we assume that the groaning sound is an artifact of the way the anti-sink valve operates, then the best thing to check would be to see if the accumulator sphere is in good condition, as when it is the groaning shouldn't occur in normal circumstances.

    Thats my theory anyway.

    Regards,
    Simon
    Last edited by Mandrake; 5th February 2006 at 09:47 PM.
    1998 Xantia Mk2 V6 Auto Exclusive

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by miketata
    I reckon it's the handbrake taking up the strain. Beware, they have been known to move when front pads are worn.
    It's not the handbrake. It happens whether the handbrake is on or off...checked that already.

    Regards,
    Simon
    1998 Xantia Mk2 V6 Auto Exclusive

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