Citroen C4: Little annoyances appear

  • Three months in and small annoyances appear
  • Two little gripes quickly become bigger issues
  • The Citroen isn't the only car with these problems

Only after a few months with a car do you really start to notice the small things that could make or break your time with it.

Over the past few wintry weeks a couple of things came to my attention. These were the kind of small gripes that soon began to annoy on a much more regular basis.

The first thing was a problem with the fuel filler cap. This is electronically operated, and opened using a button in the cabin. This all seems like a good idea, and it means that no-one can open it without getting in to the car. So, no fuel syphoning from my car. Hopefully.

Unfortunately, being electric there is always the chance that it could go wrong at some point. I soon found this out on a trip to the garage, where things didn’t quite go to plan. I pressed the button and nothing happened. The sound of the mechanism was there, but the cap was still shut.

Rather than keeping a cool head I panicked and asked a colleague to have a look too, to make sure I wasn’t going mad. Being a sensible car-fixing real man, he simply gave it a light hit and it opened when I pressed the button.

The problem is that now every time I need some diesel I look a little bonkers, as I keep tapping the cap in certain points to see if it opens. I’ve even gone in to car parks near the petrol station first to get it open, and then driven round to the petrol station.

The second issue is with the windscreen washer system, or rather the lack of warning to notify you when you run out of washer fluid. As the C4 sprays a set amount of fluid on to the windscreen, and also the lights, I seem to get through it at a remarkable rate. This has been exacerbated recently by the snow and dirty roads.

So, I could be driving to work and think I have plenty of water as it all seems to be working fine. Then when I get back in to the car to drive home, I try the washer jets and nothing comes out. If I’d know it had run out, I would have made sure I put some more in before setting off back home.

However, the Citroen doesn’t seem to be the only car with this small annoyance. The Ford Focus, recently run by my colleague Lewis Kingston, also had the same issue - as did the Toyota Auris he had before that, and the Mazda2 he is now running. It's not ideal.

These might seem like very minor concerns, but they can soon grow in to big annoyances and make your time in the car less enjoyable.

Current mileage: 15,483

Average mpg: 44.7

The fuel filler cap shuts tightly and will only open with a persuasive tap.