Xantia ABS. - David Woollard

In all the time I've looked after Citroens the ABS systems have been very reliable, perhaps I've just been lucky!

The BXs have given no trouble at all and I know usually a front wheel sensor or earthing repair will sort them out.

The Xantias have been OK up to now but I have two this week with wheel sensor faults. One has been fitted with a new sensor plus the ABS relay which failed the diode test, the other awaits repair in a week or so.

Now I understood replacing the wheel sensor (or other faulty component) should put the ABS lamp out and it would all work again. It didn't. The Citroen main agents tell me the car will have to go to them for the ECU fault memory to be cleared as I haven't the kit to do this.

For various reasons I can't get the car back to them for ten days so am left wondering if they are really right.

I know I should know the answer to the above but I don't. Have any of you had personal experience that would confirm if the ECU does really need cleaing on the dealer diagnostic or am I being led up the garden path?

Bosch ABS - David Lacey
The Bosch ABS systems we work with are auto-erasing. Once the fault has been rectified the light will then extinguish with no further intervention.

Being typically French, I'm sure the Teves system fitted to the Xantia (I think) does indeed require manual erasure of ABS fault codes.

I'm afraid you are stuck with the dealer here.....unless there is a scan tool available with the correct pod to erase ABS fault codes


Teves ABS. - David Woollard

Yes Teves Mk4 system on the 93-97 Xantia. I hope you're right and the dealer diagnostic will clear the codes, all other parts check out OK as per Autodata ABS book.

If the dealer diagnostic doesn't clear the light we must be looking at an ECU, and it's my car!

Re: Bosch ABS - andy bairsto
My 99 xm fitted with the same ecu(I think)automatically erased the warning light after a sensor change.But I have another problem and that is the cooling fans are controlled through the ecu and the clima not directly of the block temp switch and sometimes it fails to work overheating the car ,if you notice soon enough turning thr clima off and on cures the problem without stopping.
regards Andy Bairsto
Dealer resets - David Lacey
Dave N - you are quite correct - many systems require dealer resets - at £25ish +VAT a go it can be a nice little earner for us. The scan tool costing about £1000 can earn us £100 a day when times are good.

The good news is that many Rover applications (ABS, SRS etc.) are auto-erasing - when the fault is put right, the light will extinguish - no fooling about with reset tools etc..

The problem of the future will be the MIL (Malfunction Indicator Lamp) Any component failure that could result in increased emissions will flag the dreaded light on - for some people that £200 sensor will just be too much to bear - they will put up with the lamp glowing and face a possible fine. I'm sure correct MIL lamp operation will become past of the MOT test within 3 years.

David W - I really do hope your car is OK after the ABS light reset - we have had similar problems with a Teves system as fitted to a Peugeot 405. Our customer has learned to live with its 'mind of it's own' - fortunately for him it has never lit whilst undergoing an MOT test. Wheelspeed sensors on the Bosch ABS 5.0 system give us the most trouble. The lamp will illuminate as soon as you start rolling.


Dealer resets - David Woollard
David L,

I'm more than happy to pay the £25ish for a reset if I've correctly diagnosed a fault and replaced the right sensor, I don't resent the dealer recovering their investment. What makes me unhappy is if the dealer, as the "ultimate" authority, is then unsure about the need to clear codes. This is the case with the local Citroen agent who changed his opinion over the course of our phone call eventually falling on the side of "yes you do need the codes cleared after a fault, it won't auto reset".

He will win in the end because if the codes clear I'll be pleased and if he finds a fault that wasn't found from digital multimeter tests then I'll need that resolving anyway. Either way he gets paid.

I too know ABS systems that flicker the light at random and never really give a clear fault. I expect these are connection/lead problems on the wheel sensors, faulting sometimes with suspension/steering movement.

An irony if I need an ABS ECU is that a whole early petrol Xantia (high mileage and tatty) at auction would cost about the same as an ECU from the dealers. Give them their due though the very helpful parts counter are already offering an exchange unit at half the Citroen price.

On customers and warning lamps in general.......

At present I look after two more Xantias with lit ABS lamps, two P.306s with flashing airbag lamps, a Volvo with the engine management lamp on and an Espace with failed air-con. In all these cases they won't spend to make repairs, I know the temptation to leave the fault but they have to be done eventually.

Re: Dealer resets - Ash Phillips
I saw an add for a place in Glasgow or Edinburgh, havent got that ad at hand, that was doing Xantia ABS ECUs for £200 exchange. Is that a good price? I gather dealers want something in the region of £700. I'm taking over the wife's Xantia when she gets her new C5 and I know how citroens can hurt the wallet if/when things go wrong, but the Xantia is taking expenses into a new league compared with my soon to be scrapped BX, and that's worrying me a bit!
Re: Xantia ABS. - Dave N
I'm getting tired of all the ecu's that need resetting, especially after removing half the dash, usually airbags. You fix a customer's car, then the main dealers know they have you buy the balls and keep you waiting to clear the codes.
Dealer resets - David Lacey
Yes- I agree - when you have replaced the part and all is well then that's a good feeling, but when you have replaced a part and the light still glows - that is when it gets extrememly trying!!
In my experience, Citroen parts personell have been extremely helpful and actually interested in your car/problem etc. I can wholeheartedly reccommened Irvine Citroen of Cannington, near Bridgwater for any Citroen parts (Incidentally, I'm not sure if they are still Citroen agents.....) They looked after me and my demand for parts for my BX 17 DTR supplied from new by themselves to a local haulage company. I bought it at 100K and had very few problems with it - not least the renewal of the entire steel hydraulic piping!! It had an odd (Purflux?) fuel filter and they knew it off by heart - any other dealer would have been lost I think.



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