Why Doesn’t Your Jaguar’s Suspension Work in the Cold?Posted on: May 17, 2019
If you have a Jaguar, you might have issues with your air suspension not working well in cold weather. This type of problem is actually quite common, especially on the coldest days of the year. You might notice that your dashboard is telling you that your air ride suspension system is currently malfunctioning. You might notice that your vehicle is riding low and you don’t really see any other problems but you’re still getting a message on your dashboard that your vehicle is too low. You might even bring the car in once or twice when this happens but by the time you get to a shop, the air suspension is working just fine and the message is no longer there.
This winter air ride problem is not the result of a leak in the system or a problem with the components. In fact, you might believe it is simply because the codes generated that there isn’t enough in the reservoir for the compressor, but in some cases it just takes a while for the reservoir to fill in, which is why by the time you take your car in, the problem could be gone. In reality it is far more likely that the issue has to do with your sensors.
Issues with the Sensor
There are 3 types of sensory information your vehicle uses to make adjustments to the height and regulate the compressor in your Jaguar. This includes the temperature, the pressure, and the ride height. Temperature is a very important parameter for your air ride. The pressure in the air density can vary based on temperature because of Charles’ law.
If you have an air ride suspension and you take your vehicle from your house outside on your way to work and the outside temperature is around 32 degrees Fahrenheit, your brakes will heat the air that is contained in the bladder and the volume of air in the bladder will expand. However, when you park your car overnight and you wake up in the morning and the air outside is only 10 degrees Fahrenheit, the air inside of that bladder will have contracted and the result will be decreased volume and pressure to support the car. So, when you walk outside to start your Jaguar your vehicle will be riding lower at the beginning.
The air temperature also has a role to play with regard to the reservoir. When the temperature goes down, the amount of air contained in the reservoir also goes down, which simply means there is less air to adjust the vehicle height. The compressors are not exempt from Charles’ law. If your air intake temperature drops, this denser air might be used by the compressor and if that’s the case the time required to pressurize the reservoir is reduced.
What to Do About It
If you are having trouble with cold temperatures, your control module in the vehicle should take into consideration the ambient temperature in order to determine things like how long the compressor should run to properly fill the reservoir. Air temperature is very critical, but sometimes the sensors that are responsible for measuring the ride height of your vehicle have to make changes or adjustments, which can take time. It might take 20 or 30 minutes of adjustments between the time that you try to start the car and you end up driving around. It might take that long for your warning light about the air suspension to turn off.
Understand that your control module might not immediately turn on your compressor when you go to start the engine because it needs time to deal with the changes in air pressure and temperature. Your compressor will be turned on until your vehicle reaches the appropriate set of conditions, but you might not notice your compressors operating if your vehicle is stopped. In the most extreme cases, your compressor will run during startup and it might take 20 minutes or more. Each car is different.
Rest assured that there may not be a leak in the system, your compressor could simply be weakened. It may be no problem whatsoever, simply the result of temperature change. Nonetheless, working with a qualified professional will help to determine where the issues lie if any.
For more information on different problems with your suspension or any other questions you might have about your Jaguar not performing properly, contact our team of knowledgeable experts at European Auto Service Center Inc. We have Aventura/Miami, and Boca Raton East and West locations for your convenience.