Do you know your car's MoT and mileage history? Our user profiles will show you for FREE | No thanks
2.0HDI 110 bhp cambelt change - happytorque
I know that Cambelts are a pretty hot subject for most of us, due I guess to the massive costs involved when one breaks.
I have a Citroen C5 2.0 HDI (110 BHP) that has currently done 34,000 miles. Citroen recommend replacing the belt at 100,000 miles and this is personally backed-up by the Chief Mechanic at my local Citroen agents. He has told me that 100,000 miles is a safe figure to use.
Haynes quote the change mileage as 72,000 for the HDI, but suggest that "to be safe" its a good idea to change it at 36,000.
Can anyone give me some advice on this one please as i'm currently at 34,000....do i swap in 2,000 miles time, or wait till 72,000?
Or do I, as Citroen seem to be suggesting, stay calm until 100,000? (cant imagine i would get much sympathy if it broke at 99,000 miles)
What experiences have people had? anyone successfully done the 100,000....anyone had a breakage at a lower mileage?
I would expect big damage?
Cheers, Trev

Edited by Pugugly on 30/08/2008 at 20:34

Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - mjm
I cannot comment on your case, specifically, but I run a 2 litre petrol Xantia with a recommended change at 72k. I had it changed at 68k, so it lasted at least that long with no problem.
Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - 659FBE
See my thread "When to change a cambelt" (you will have to dig in the archives for this). My expererience since I wrote that piece is that the PSA engines have a better than average drive with good quality steel idler rollers with sealed bearings, but that the water pump is the achilles heel of this engine. The high pressure fuel pump is relatively kind to the belt as it is multi-piston and untimed (contrast with the VW PD stystem).

As a general rule for PSA diesels, I would suggest a belt change at 50k or 5 years (whichever is sooner) with a careful visual check on the water pump for signs of leakage through the bearing vent hole. Replacement pumps are fairly cheap but the roller kit is a bit pricy. At 100k, change the belt, pump and idler rollers regardless.


Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - neil
Just had my Xantia 110HDi cambelt done at 70k.

I would have been happy to go with Citroen's recommended 100k - the dealership where I bought the parts are friendly and they say they've never see one fail below 100k - but I decided it might as well be done as the crankshaft pulley appeared to be getting noisy (a known fault- they're two-part with a rubber damper core. So - it got a belt and a crank pulley. The belt looked absolutely brand new and I'd have been happy to run it to 100k, although obviously you don't re-install a used belt. However, the waterpump was weeping slightly, so I would suggest you budget for the set of belt, £25ish, pulley (£120 from GSF, £140ish from a dealer, believe it or not!) and waterpump (£45ish, dealer)plus Citroen antifreeze (3 litres @ about £2-50 a litre, the cars fragile heater matrix etc seem to prefer the pukka stuff, which is longlife/OAT tech based). Pleny of time to save up though - I would plan on doing this at double your existing mileage and not give it a thought before then.

Where Haynes get their figure from eludes me - the old PSA XUD engine (earlier Xant,ZXs etc) needed a belt at 72k and didn't used to break before that - and presumably Citroen are now using better belts they have even more confidence in - the one I got from Citroen was a Dayco with a fancy 'model' name and they cant be THAT hard to make as a quality, reliable product!

I would certyainly go with 72k though, based on the anticipated life of the bottom pulley and the waterpump, which is driven off the cambelt. Oh, and PS your auxilliary belt will need doing by then as well - another £20ish. Labour? Not bad, about 3hrs all in, shouldn't be any worse on the C5.

Oh, and if it starts making a funny 'jingling' noise at about 2000 rpm, it needs a new turbo heatshield (about £3!)

Hope that assists - also see frenchcarforum.co.uk

Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - David Horn
The service manual for the 1.9TD XUD in my Xsara says to change at 80k. Currently on 78700, so going to have to start saving!
Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - happytorque
Cheers Guys,
I think i will go middle of the road and change at 72,000. Thats 3 years time then! Fingers crossed. Thanks all for the usefull info.
Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - Ben with a Genesis
I would suggest you budget for the set of
belt, £25ish, pulley (£120 from GSF, £140ish from a dealer, believe
it or not!) and waterpump (£45ish, dealer)plus Citroen antifreeze (3 litres
@ about £2-50 a litre, the cars fragile heater matrix etc
seem to prefer the pukka stuff, which is longlife/OAT tech based).

What colour is your replacement coolant? Is it blue or colourless?
Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - neil
What colour is your replacement coolant? Is it blue or colourless?

Couldn't swear to it, but I think, blue...?

Are you going to disillusion me?


Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - Ben with a Genesis
Someone else please confirm, but I believe the clear stuff is organic acid type coolant, safe for life, and the blue stuff is modern traditional type ethylene glycol.

My 1999 Xsara was filled with yellow coolant, but when I changed the thermostat, used the blue stuff. It is the same part no as the older coolant, just a different colour and possibly longer life. No problems there. Just change the coolant every 5 years.

The C5 came with colourless coolant. The C5 does not have a specified time for changing the coolant.

Now, if you feel both coolants, the clear one feels slippier and smells nicer than the blue stuff. (Dip your finger in)

Dad topped up his Picasso with the blue stuff. The dealer swears that they are interchangable, but I aren't sure. The coolant just feels so different on your skin.

Wash your hands very well afterwards.

What do other people think?

My cambelt isn't too far off, at 50k miles and nearly 4 years old. I'm thinking whether or not to change the pump and coolant.
Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - 659FBE
As I have said, the water pumps on PSA engines are a weakness, and I would strongly recommend at least a visual inspection at 50k miles. If you take off the upper timing belt cover and use a small Maglite torch which has a beam which can be focused sharply at the exact spot, you can get a good view of the pump. The TUD5 engine I last worked on had a belt change at 50k and a belt, idlers and water pump change at 100k. As the engine had PSA longlife blue coolant, the crust around the vent hole was easy to spot.

I think I have probably got it about right for this engine, although the idlers were seemingly in perfect condition. My reasoning for changing them was that I might just as well get fair use from the replacements - they won't be changed again. The water pump looked a mess when taken off, although there was no play in the bearing and rotation was smooth.

If you do the sums, over the period of likely running for one of these vehicles, a 50k belt change will probably result in only one extra belt in the vehicle's life. This is a very fair swap for the extra safety margin gained.

Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - PhilW
With regard to coolant, I posted this on another thread some time ago. Is it useful - especially the point about "not mixing coolants"

Hope this might be of some use - just found this in my "Revue Technique" for the Xantia HDi
Capacite : - sans clim. :8,5 litres. - avec clim. : 11 litres.
Depuis l'annee modele 2001, tous les modeles recoivent un nouveau type de liquide de refroidissement. Il est formellement interdit de melanger l'ancien et le nouveau liquide de refroidissement
Preconisation :
- jusqu'a l'annee modele 2000 : liquide Revkogel 107 ou Procor 3000 (protection jusqu'a - 35°C).
- depuis l'annee modele 2001 : liquide Glysantin G33 ou Revkogel 2000. Periodicite d'entretien :
- niveau : tous les 2 ans ou tous les 20 000 km. En entretien severe, tous les ans ou tous les 15 000 km.
- remplacement et purge tous les 120 000 km ou tous les 5 ans jusqu'a l?annee modele 2000. Depuis le millesime 2001 : pas de remplacement preconise du a l'adoption d'un nouveau type de liquide de refroidissement a duree de vie illimitee."

Don't know what your French is like but basically it says (hope I am not being patronising here! My French ain't brilliant!)
Type of antifreeze changed with 2001 model - do NOT mix old and new types.
In pre 2001 models, check the level (niveau - I presume means strength of mixture not just water level) every 2 years or 20k. Purge and replace every 120k or 5 years.
Since 2001 no replacement necessary because of the adoption of a new type of antifreeze which has unlimited life.
I am open to correction here - but I think that's what is says - if unsure ask your French mistress!!!

Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - neil
I am open to correction here - but I think that's
what is says - if unsure ask your French mistress!!!


Yep - looks like Xantia stuff isn't OAT, just longlife.

My French... erm, girlfriend...! Congratulates you on your traduction!

Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - steve1
Citron C5 cam belts. My citron has just done 10000 miles I think it is time to change, I had advice from a Citron dealer to change the belt at 10000 miles , he also told me that if the belt brake it will not damage the engin . I would not like to test that information
Citroen C5 2.0HDI Cambelt Change - BrummyC5

My C5 2.0 HDI did 100K without any drama. I had the Timing belt changed at Euro Car Care Derby. They pointed out that the water pump had already dome 100k and would have done 200K by the time the next belt change was due.

Even though it may not be leaking now, with the new belt installed and all parts torqued up to factory settings, will it last more than 20 or 30K? I had my water pump changed with the cam belt and alternator belts etc as a precaution. We've had various peugeots diesels in our family over the years and two of them had water pumps leaking at about 120K.

Ask Honest John

Value my car

Amount to borrow
Sorry. The minimum loan amount is £1000
To pay back over

My credit score

Best available rate 9.20%

Total repayment £9,304.93

Total cost of credit £1,804.93


60 monthly payments

Apply now

Representative example

The Representative APR is 13.2% (fixed) so if you borrow £7,500 over 4 years at a rate of 13.2% p.a (fixed) you will repay £199.21 per month and repay £9562.20 in total.