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2010 1.6L HDI berlingo SOMETIMES wont start
Hi all,

New to this forum with my newly purchased berlingo..

Everything was great with the car when i first bought it a few weeks ago, note this is my work van so it is my primary source of income.
So basically every morning i will turn it on and go to work, cranks fine as usual.
I drive about 30 minutes to a job, turn my car off for about 4 hours and it wont turn back on?
All the lights come on the dash, music is working etc.

When the key is fully turned, you can hear just 1 click coming from the engine bay i believe, and thats it. All the relevant dash lights come on when in the 'ignition' mode, such as battery, check engine, handbrake etc.
I haven't tried jump starting it to see if its the battery however i can confirm there is 12.5v when the car is off, and 14.3v when its running.
So i had to push start the car to get it going, drove it home and turned the car off. I then turned it on again within a minute and it cranks perfectly?
Then the next morning i try turning it on again and it cranks and starts perfectly as well?

May be a point to note that my car does not have an immobilizer, just a normal key to start.

Where should i start looking?

New battery?
New starter motor?

Battery is easy enough to replace but where i live (australia) a starter motor is almost $400AUD ~$240 euro.
If it is the starter motor, does this sound like the symptoms of a faulty starter motor or starter motor solenoid?

Im worried because its not a consistent fault and can happen whenever.
Have you done a load test on the battery to see if it is failing. Check the battery terminals are tight and secure and all the cables including earth straps are good condition and firmly fixed. It could be the starter motor failing but start with the basics first. You don't say what year, engine and mileage the van has.
Are we there yet????? Huh
Ex 1.6hdi van now 3 seater 1.4 multispace
[-] The following 1 user says Thank You to Tomcat3 for this post:
  • diien
Hi and welcome to the forum

it looks like the battery needs replacing because you should have 13.v+ in a decent battery up to as much as 13.5v is a good battery.

If the van had been standing before you bought it the battery may just need a decent charge via an external battery charger say a 4 amp charger will do. Other than that change the battery, this should be covered by warranty.
[-] The following 1 user says Thank You to polar for this post:
  • diien
    Apologies for being vague,

The van is a 2010, 1.6L HDI (turbo)

Its done 100,000kms (62000 miles)

I've crawled under the car today and noticed the ground connection on the starter was quite rusty!, so i disconnected the ground connection, gave it a good brushup with a wire brush and i hope that was the fix. I have attached a photo of this 'rusty' connection. Notice the nut is fully rusted, but also the base of the starter motor ground connection as well.

I also got a friend to help me today, he cranked the car whilst i had a clamp meter on the positive lead of the battery.
spiked from 50A-100A, and yes the car did start (even before cleaning the ground connection).


Im unsure how i do this loadtest, can i bring it to an auto parts retailer so the can check the 'health' of a battery? ( I've done it a long time ago once. )
I may look at replacing the battery, ive already bought a new aftermarket starter motor that is 5 days away, i really cant afford any downtime for work to be honest. 


Car wont be under warranty, i bought the car second hand as is, its also doing quite a few funny things which i will start a thread on later!
Things like window wipers magically working - simultaneously though the media player will restart whenever the front windscreen wiper decides to turn on.

Never owned a French car, always had Japs and Germans.
As Polar said your battery is a bit low at 12.5v ideally you want higher than 12.6v, take a reading after the car has been standing for a few hours and the battery has chance to rest. You need a load test meter to check the battery out most decent outlets that sell batteries have one but go to an outlet you trust and be honest.
Are we there yet????? Huh
Ex 1.6hdi van now 3 seater 1.4 multispace
Good news i think,
After cleaning the ground terminal free of rust, the problem hasn't persisted.
Touch wood though because im at a job for the next 6 hours and if my van doesn't turn on... on a Friday afternoon it will be a great end to a day.
Im going to change the battery and starter motor entirely as well.
Will keep you guys updated on how it all goes i guess
Good luck changing the starter, they are not a fun job Sad
Good luck with the job, I would change the battery first then see if it fixes the problem as if you change both at same time your not going to know which one it was and you end up with more expense and time.
Are we there yet????? Huh
Ex 1.6hdi van now 3 seater 1.4 multispace
Hi everyone, i have put my starter motor order on hold, it seems as though the problem HAS NOT come back.
I will be replacing my battery shortly.
Being an electrician i knew rust is not a very good conductor haha

Citroen put the starter motor in such a awkward spot...
Seems as though the battery has to come out everytime you want to do something in that area of the car.
I had to remove the battery in order to change the air filter??
Try getting near the fuel rail sensor, I fitted a chip booster to our berlingo and had to take the battery out, the battery tray, the fuel filter and several other bits just to get anywhere near it, and then when I eventually got my fingertips on the plug it took an age to work out how to actually unclip it.

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