Citroen C3 1.4 Cambelt / Timing Belt Failure

Citroen C3 1.4 8 Valve timing belt failure tensioner failure
The RAC had been to look at this car after the owner reported a non start, they diagnosed snapped cam belt.
RP Services were called out we found the belt intact so tried to turn the engine by hand using a socket and ratchet, this method negates the possibility of damaging valves as you can feel any resistance through the ratchet. We found the crank would turn but it did not drive the belt which means the camshaft was not turning in relation to the crank.


The owner said that she had tried to start the engine for some time before calling the RAC, I explained that these engines are classed as interference type whereby if the timing between crankshaft and camshaft is incorrect there will be a very high risk of valve and/or piston damage.

It was agreed that we would change the timing belt, water pump belt tensioner and serpentine belt, we did this and the vehicle fired into life. There had been no internal damage caused, the owner was very happy and was advised to pick some lottery numbers as the chances of getting away with this type of failure on a Citroen Peugeot TU3 engine are rare indeed.

A couple of points to note the vehicle is 11 years old and it is not known if the timing belt had ever been replaced also the last time the car had been serviced was 4 years previous, when the belt tensioner had been removed it was found to be partially seized, this would have been making a noise for some time and may have been picked up during routine maintenance.

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Citroen Xsara Picasso Service Light Reset

How to Reset the Service Light Citroen Xsara Picasso

Recently I have had a few requests for Citroen Xsara Picasso Service Light Reset information from people who service their own vehicles.

Being a mobile mechanic  and auto diagnostic specialist  I could use the stock answer and say “I’ll have to plug it in for you”.

As you have no doubt seen through my other posts I do not believe in making things difficult for the home mechanic.
Here is the procedure:

Sit in drivers seat ignition off and handbrake applied.

Press and hold trip reset button.

Turn key to position two (ignition lights on engine not started).

Keeping the trip reset button pressed in you will notice your trip meter counting down.

When zero (0) is reached Release the trip button and start the car the service light (spanner symbol) should now be extinguished.


Please only use this information after your vehicle has been serviced



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Brake Fluid

RP Automotive Services are seeing more and more often cars that have been regularly serviced but not had the brake fluid checked for moisture.
Most car manufacturers specify brake fluid should be replaced every 2 years. This is because brake fluid absorbs moisture which in turn dramatically reduces the fluids boiling point.
The heat caused by friction when the brakes are used is considerable and when there is 3% or more moisture in the brake fluid this will have a significant effect on the braking efficiency of the car by boiling the fluid under prolonged or

heavy breaking .
We check the moisture levels as part of the routine service schedule. Please check with your garage or mechanic that this is also part of their service.
It only takes a couple of minutes and could save lives. Frequently the customer who has had their car serviced at reputable garages are surprised when they see the results of the brake fluid test.
Car owners put a lot of trust into the hands of garages and mechanics, being professional means that we don’t just make sure the pads/shoes are good and top up the fluid it means checking the system this includes fluid moisture levels.




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Peugeot 206 Service Light Reset

As i did this today after servicing a Peugeot 206 gti 180 here is another how to:

With the key in the Ignition in the off position Press and hold the trip meter button,Continue pressing the button.

Turn the key to accessory position (where the instruments lights come on but before the engine starts).

Continue to keep the button pressed in for 10 seconds or until display indicates 0.

Release button, turn key to Off position.

Start car and the spanner symbol will be extinguished.



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Mobile Car Mechanic Sittingbourne Diagnostic Scan


Please note this procedure should only be used after you car has been serviced and would qeustion any company who is unable to reset the

service/oil light either using diagnostic equipment or using this method after they have have serviced a vehicIe.




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Peugeot Citroen BSI Reset

Here is some useful information from RP Automotive Services. Mobile Car Mechanic Sittingbourne.

Peugeot Citroen cars have a “B S I” (Body Systems Interface) ECU.

This system holds information for immobiliser, mileage display, lighting and many other Peugeot Citroen programmed settings.

The software that controls the operation of these systems can become corrupted if the battery has been replaced and the “BSI” has not gone to sleep before disconnection of old battery or been woken up after reconnection of new battery or sometimes for no good reason at all!

Think of it as running your laptop on the battery and then removing the battery without shutting it down., not a good idea.

The system can be rebooted if a problem has occured so all is not lost.

Follow this procedure for the reset (reboot).

  • Have the drivers window fully open.
  • Open the bonnet and make sure all equipment is switched off including interior light.
  • Close all doors and remove key from the ignition.
  • Wait  3 minutes, disconnect the vehicle battery then wait 15 seconds.
  • Reconnect the vehicle battery and wait a further 10 seconds.
  • Switch on the side lights through the driver’s window.
  • Switch on the ignition DO NOT start the engine at this point.
  • Hold the lock button on the key down for 10 seconds while key is still in the ignition.
  • Switch off ignition and remove key open & close door to test central locking system.
  • Start the engine.

This is how to reset the BS.I It is worth doing if you have problems with lights,wipers,radio,central locking,starting etc as it only takes a few minutes and can save you  ££

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The Internal Combustion Engine

The internal combustion engine is an engine in which the combustion of a fuel occurs with a mixture of air in a combustion chamber.
In an internal combustion engine, the expansion of the high-temperature and gases produced by combustion applies direct force to the pistons.
This force moves the pistons over a distance, generating mechanical energy, which is in turn transmitted to the flywheel via the crankshaft.
The term internal combustion engine usually refers to an engine in which combustion is intermittent, such as the more familiar four-stroke and two-stroke engines.
With variants, such as the six-stroke piston engine and the rotary engine.

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