Jump to content


Battery issue '51 plate

Xsara Battery Problem

  • Please log in to reply
5 replies to this topic

#1 reeksy86


    16 LX Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 11 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:South Wales

Posted 20 January 2013 - 02:46 PM

Hi folks.

Recently brought a '51 plate xsara Picasso. Today driving home the car suddenly smelt very strongly of gas, (not petrol) I immediately pulled over on the motorway and had a quick look around and under the car, but in this snow didnt spend too much time on the hard shoulder for obvious reasons.

Since I have been home I have tried a few things.

I noticed that I had heaters on, so checked pollen filter and air filter etc. cleaned and replaced them. No difference.

Had a look under car at cat as I thought It may have damaged it through the amount of salt on the road. This looked fine.

When I went to lock the car - the keys were in the ignition, as I had been listening in the radio whilst working on it. The inside stank again, which suddenly made me think of the battery, which is located under the passenger seat. Although this looks ok it does make sense that this is a likely culprit. The car had been sat for an hour, the keys were in the ignition, with the radio on, but car not running.

My questions are has anyone else ever come across this problem?

Is there a way I can actually check if this is the issue without forking out the cash for a new battery?

If I am way off on my diagnosis, what could it be?

Appreciate any help given.

  • allonopluflab likes this

#2 pjg


    1.8 HDI Exclusive

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 467 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Swansea
  • Interests:Photography, Music, Motorbikes, Cars, Computers,

Posted 20 January 2013 - 03:26 PM

This is a strange one?

Tthe battery should not be giving off fumes especially with the engine not running, as its the act of charging that heats up the plates causing the acid to heat up and give off gas. I've not heard of a battery giving off fumes to that degree when not on charge. There may be a breather pipe attached to the battery that takes fumes out of the car, check and see if :

a. there is a pipe

b. is it connected

c. is it goung out under the car through the battery box.


If the battery is not a sealed unit check that it has enough water to cover the plates inside, if not top it up with distilled water.


Other than that I would say if your sure its coming from the battery and none of the above apply change the battery as the fumes can be dangerous both from breathing in and they are flammable.


Hope this helps.

12 Berlingo Multispace 1.6HDI VTR H White

09 C4 Picasso 1.6 HDI VTR+ Metallic Blue Replaced after 1 week due to ECU failure 

52 Picasso 2.0Hdi Silver - Passed on to Son

#3 rawthey


    1.8 HDI Exclusive

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 411 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Cumbria

Posted 20 January 2013 - 04:54 PM

Tthe battery should not be giving off fumes especially with the engine not running, as its the act of charging that heats up the plates causing the acid to heat up and give off gas.dangerous both from breathing in and they are flammable.


But that would be hydrogen which would be odourless.

Xsara Picasso (58) 1.6i 16V Desire, Iron Grey

#4 cris1117


    1.6hi 110 (2007) X-Picasso

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 271 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 20 January 2013 - 08:29 PM

Hi. A cooked battery smells like bad eggs, the cat can sometimes give off a similar smell when it is hot with or without the engine running.

The only thing I can think of that vaguely smells of gas is anti-freeze have a sniff down by the heater and check the coolant level.

#5 blondchaser


    1.6 Hdi (Royal Blue)

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,306 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Twixt Forth and Tay
  • Interests:fast trucks and even faster women.

Posted 20 January 2013 - 09:04 PM

Did you have a curry last night??????lol

#6 stimulator


    1.6 Cherry Red Metallic, wonder car

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 9,682 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Waterlooville Hants
  • Interests:Model trains OO gauge. C3 Picasso, Grandchildren

Posted 21 January 2013 - 09:01 AM

there should be a tube from the top of the batery going overboard to take away any fume.


Possible that the tube is blocked with snow/ice.

The battery should be a gel sealed type as it is inside the car, for a car that age it will mosy likely be a replacement. Look and see if it has caps on it, open one if it's a wt cell unit I suggest you change it. In an accicdent you don'tw ant acid being spilt on you or the pax/children.


If it is gel and the tube is clear then you will have to look else where.


possible wet aircon see FAQs in tech forum for MK1& 2 for a fix for that.

17 Reg C3 Saloon Flair 1.2 110BHP
Previous Xsara Picasso 20HDi, C3 SX 1.4HDi, C3 SX 1.6HDI, C4 Picasso 1.6HDi VTR+ EGS 62 Reg C3 Picasso VTR+ 1.6 HDi 92BHP

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Xsara, Battery, Problem