Citroen DS front end wiring – part 4

I had gone as far as I could on my own with the DS.   It was time to bring in the experts.   I had spent a number of hours trying to get the lights to work.    I made some progress, but was unable to get them to work correctly.   Luckily Jason, my friendly DS mechanic was able to sort out the mess pretty quickly.   Turns out there were multiple problems all contributing to the strange results I was seeing.   People criticise British car wiring, but French DS wiring is no better.

Firstly there were some bad connectors that needed replacing.   Next, some of the wiring inside the wings were wrong.   Thirdly there were a couple of bad grounds.    I had been mostly looking at the connections where they join the front wing.     We were aided by a great diagnostic tool that I plan to purchase.   It let you test for voltage, ground, send 12v to test a component and much more.   It’s called VGate PowerTest.

Citroen DS Front wiring

The lights on the DS are great for a car of its age, especially the high beams aided by the inner driving lights.

Since the connections to the wings are not great, in the future I plan to replace the individual bullet connectors with a single harness connection for the 8 wires on the passengers side and 6 on the drivers side.  This will make removing the wings easier.  Not sure why Citroen didn’t do this as standard on the DS wiring.

Next we fixed a couple of bad connections for the rear indicators.   I need to solder one of the connectors back, and if that does not work, purchase a new one.       The final wiring related fix that was needed was the door contact switch on the passengers side.   The connectors on the reproduction switches are not the greatest, so the 12v wire had fallen off.   I had tried for ages to get it with magnets and hooks, but apparently the trick is to use a long piece of coat-hanger with a hook bent at the end.   We retrieved the wire and put new connectors on it.     The wiring on the car was now back to working again.     In the future, I plan to put the driving lights on a relay like the headlights, install a battery disconnect switch and use harness connectors at the top of the front wings.

As we did all this work, we identified a number of other things that needed attention:

  • The door mirrors were reversed.   I didn’t know the passengers side is a few cm longer, and I had it on the drivers side.
  • Chrome trim on the side of the roof is rather beat up and can be replaced without removing the roof.
  • The bonnet release cables are incorrectly mounted.
  • Windscreen washer cables not correctly routed and one jet is blocked.
  • LHM leak from the front is caused by leaks from front suspension boots, in particular the passengers side.
  • Window rubbers/felts on the outside/inside are wrong and don’t fit well.
  • Passengers side front window needs adjustment.
  • There are some missing pieces near the top of the bonnet that help hold on the insulation mats that I am yet to fit.

I also replaced the lens for the reproduction tail light with the original one.  In my case it was the housing that was dead and the lens was very poor quality.

Tail light lens

It is hard to see from the photo, but the quality difference is immediately apparent when handing them.

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