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One of the worst feelings in the world is to get into your car, turn the key and find out that the car won’t start for you. Particularly when you need to get somewhere. While there are several possible reasons for this, the most important ones are associated with the battery. In this post, we are going to review the battery problems that you might face in a Renault Clio.
One of the most common battery problems in a Renault Clio is a high self-discharge rate. This means that the battery keeps draining itself even if the car isn’t being used. Other problems associated with the battery are – alternator problems, corrosion of battery terminals, loose wires and a few others. Read on to go through them in detail.
Temporary ways to start the car
Before jumping into the problems, we understand that if you are reading this article, your Renault Clio won’t start. So here are some temporary tricks to help you start your car for that one extra trip that you really need to go for.
The first option is to jump-start the car. This means having another car provide the initial jolt of current required for your engine to start. Consequently, your car’s alternator will take over and power the car for the rest of the journey. This will all happen while hopefully charging the battery.
If you have some time overnight, the second method is to charge your battery using an external charger connected to a point at your house. This will take some time but should hopefully allow you to take your car out the next day.
Finally, you can try to start the car by getting the wheels to run the engine. This means that you will have to either push the car to a certain speed with help or run it down an incline. Once you have a certain speed, a nifty gear trick to switch into second gear should help start the car like a miracle. Remember that this will only work when your car doesn’t have a fully depleted battery.
Time to investigate more permanent solutions.
High Self Discharge Rate
The problem that generally plagues all Renault Clios is a very high self-discharge rate. This happens when there is some circuit in the car that keeps consuming energy even when the car has been turned off. Thus, if you do not charge the battery every day (run the car), then your car may not be able to start itself after a couple of days.
The way to detect this is to use a multimeter and connect the end to the battery terminals when the car is turned off. The current reading should read lower than 50mA. Any higher and your car might not turn on if kept idle for a few days.
Generally, you can troubleshoot the problem and find out which circuit is causing the self-discharge current to be so high by using the multimeter and checking which fuse in the fuse box causes the reading. It could be one of several circuits. Thus, once you find it, it is probably best to ask a professional to help fix that circuit.
As a rule, just remember to switch off all lights when you get out of the car. This will save you a lot of pain in any case.
Now, this might not exactly be a battery problem itself, but it may cause one. Since the alternator is responsible for charging the battery, having a faulty alternator may lead to a depleted battery.
The most common reason for alternators to malfunction is to have some fluid leaked into them. This is easily possible as depending on the position of the alternator, engine oil and coolant can leak into them causing some short circuit.
In such cases, you may have to replace the entire alternator to fix the problem. Since this is directly connected to the battery, be careful while you work on it as you might get a shock.
Sensor light flashing
Another battery-related problem that you might face is that you keep getting a warning light on your dashboard regarding the battery or even the ABS. If your car is starting up and it works properly, then you don’t need to worry too much.
This error is generally caused by a low battery voltage. Thus, if the car is running, the alternator should do its work and charge the battery. If the car isn’t starting, you may want to connect an external charger to bring the battery back to life overnight.
Other Common Battery Problems
The battery problems stated above are specific to the Renault Clio. However, while driving this car, you may encounter some other problems too. We’ll explain them in brief below.
A common problem faced is loose battery wires around the terminals. Due to this, the contact might break at times causing the battery not to supply the current properly. Thus, it is important to have all the wires tightly screwed in.
Corrosion is another problem that might occur, especially in locations that have a wet climate. It can also be caused by road salts used in the winter. This is commonly seen around the battery terminals. The corroded terminals increase the resistance of the circuits thus leading to lower currents and lower power. Fortunately, you can easily clear up the corroded surfaces with a steel brush to solve the problem.
Finally, the worst-case scenario is that the lifetime of your battery is over. This may be the case if your battery is very old. The capacity of the battery is greatly diminished and thus the battery does not function as it once used to. The solution is easy as all you must do is replace the battery with a new one.
There you have it, some of the most common ways the battery can cause problems in your Renault Clio. Hopefully, this article helped you get out of a sticky situation temporarily and told you how to fix some of the common issues in Clio’s battery. Sadly, for other issues, you may have to just replace the battery. But it will be worth it when you sit in the car the next morning and your car starts without a hitch.
It is worth noting that there is generally a high current flowing through these circuits. So, if you decide to try some DIY fix that you found on YouTube or in the owner’s manual, you need to be safe and take all the necessary precautions. Otherwise, your best bet is to let the professional handle it. And with that, we hope your battery woes end soon!