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Citroen C3 Common Problems and Solutions

Bumpy Ride

Problem:

Driving your C3 is a lot more uncomfortable due to excessive bumping, especially on uneven surfaces.

Models affected:

Solution:

This is a very common issue in early models of the C3, and you'll need to check your suspension. If it's damaged, then you will need to buy a replacement from us and install it. This might seem like a big job, but it's a lot easier to do than you might think and a lot cheaper than using a mechanic.

Difficulty level

3

Car Heater Not Working (All Petrol Models)

Problem:

The car heater is malfunctioning and doesn't get warm even when you're driving.

Models affected:

Solution:

This is being caused by a faulty electronic thermostat. You will need to order a new one, which you can do using our Citroen C3 parts page. You will then need to remove the faulty one and replace it. This job can take as little as a few minutes and should see your car heater working as it should.

Difficulty level

1

Part you need

Thermostat

Part required

Thermostat

Get a quote for Thermostat

Sensodrive gearbox problem

Problem:

There are many known problems with the sensodrive gearbox. One of the most common issues is with gear changing. The main issue is with the changes not happening as smoothly as they should. This is usually due to a software fault.

Models affected:

Solution:

Having the gearbox software re-programmed should fix the problem.

Difficulty level

5

Heater problems

Problem:

A known problem on the Citroen C3 is for the heaters not to blow out hot air, only blowing out cold air on all settings. This problem is caused by a fault with the air distributor flap.

Models affected:

Solution:

You will need to fit a replacement air distributor flap to sort the problem.

Difficulty level

3

Electrical problems

Problem:

The C3 is known to suffer from electrical problems, which can be anything from a problem with the lights to a problem with the central locking. The usual cause of electrical problems on this car is to do with the control unit.

Models affected:

Solution:

Re-programming the control unit should rectify these problems, otherwise it will be due to a problem with a specific electrical part itself.

Difficulty level

5

Engine misfiring/irregular idling

Problem:

If your car is suffering from the engine misfiring or from irregular idling, then the injector sensors are known to fail on the C3. The problem in this video is injector related.

Models affected:

Solution:

Fitting a replacement injector sensor will resolve the issue.

Difficulty level

3

Bumper fitting issue

Problem:

If you have noticed that the bumper on your C3 is not fitting correctly then this is a known issue on these cars, particularly with early models. This problem is caused by poorly fitted seals.

Models affected:

Solution:

Citroen fix this problem under warranty, and it has also been known for them to sort this problem as a good will gesture for cars no longer under warranty.

Difficulty level

5

No Engine Power on Hills

Problem:

You're experiencing a complete lack of power when driving up hills and using 2nd or 3rd gear to make the climb. You may also find that the clutch slips during those hill climbs.

Models affected:

Solution:

This could be a simple matter of just replacing your spark plugs. If that doesn't resolve the issue, then you need to check your ignition coils and your clutch. If your ignition coils appear worn, then you'll need to buy a replacement from our Citroen pages. In the worst-case scenario, you will need to replace the entire clutch system.

Difficulty level

1

Electric Parking Brake Fault Warning Light is Illuminated

Problem:

Even when driving, your electric parking brake warning light is on.

Models affected:

Solution:

This is a software problem. You'll need to take your C3 to a Citroen dealer, who will erase the fault and reprogramme the software completely. This is a common problem with the Citroen C4 Picasso, but it can happen to C3s too.

Difficulty level

5

Sound of Water When Turning Corners

Problem:

Every time that you turn a corner, you can hear the swishing sound of water. You may also find a puddle of water on the driver's side footwell.

Models affected:

Solution:

Your first step should be to check that all of the car's water channels are clean and clear of debris. If they are, then check your heater motor for any water. If there is water inside the heater motor, then your fuses will malfunction. If that's the case, the fault is most likely a clogged pollen filter. You can avoid this happening by taking the occasional long drive. If it has happened, then you will need to buy one of our replacement filters, but fitting this yourself is very easy and only takes about 20-minutes.

Difficulty level

1

Part you need

Pollen Filter

Part required

Pollen Filter

Get a quote for Pollen Filter

Loss of Brake Power

Problem:

There is a drop in the tension of your brake pedal, leading to longer stop times.

Models affected:

Solution:

There's a very good chance that this is nothing more than the brake vacuum pump having come loose from the timing belt. If so, then you will need to replace both the vacuum pump and the timing belt, both of which you can order directly from us.

Difficulty level

2

Rattling Noise When Driving

Problem:

When you're driving you can hear a rattling noise coming from the front of the car.

Models affected:

Solution:

Usually only an issue with the C3 Puretech, you'll need to check the shock absorber spring. You should find that the rubber sleeving that the shock absorber sits in has come loose, so the spring itself is in contact with the unit. All you have to do is lever the spring up and reinsert the rubber sleeving. This will resolve the issue.

Difficulty level

2

Misaligned Steering

Problem:

The steering wheel isn't aligned correctly, making driving feel more awkward and uncomfortable.

Models affected:

Solution:

Your first step is going to be adjusting the steering alignment. This is something that you can easily do yourself. However, you may also need to replace the front tyres as they may have become more worn out due to the misalignment. You can buy spare tyres quickly and easily using our handy search guide.

Difficulty level

1

Part you need

Tyres

Part required

Tyres

Get a quote for Tyres

Reading these common Citroen C3 problems should help you find out what is wrong with your Citroen C3 – or just what to look out for in the future. We’ll also give suggestions on what to do if your Citroen C3 does have one of these issues.