Common problems with the Renault Clio
Ellie Dyer-Brown, 1 year ago
5 min read
WhoCanFixMyCar covers the most common Renault Clio faults, discussing overall reliability and repair costs
The Renault Clio is a popular supermini that was first launched in 1990. Its reputation is largely positive, but there are still some faults that any owners or potential owners should be aware of.
Common issues for the Renault Clio include:
As you’d expect there have been various model updates since the Clio first came out, each one coming with its own unique issues. Let’s take a look at how these common problems vary from one update to the next.
Renault Clio 2001 to 2005
1. Brake problems
The 2002 model is renowned for having brake issues. In particular, there’s a risk of brake servo assistance failure which is caused by the incorrect position of the air pressure sensor.
Likewise, a common problem with the Renault Clio 1.2 is that these models sometimes have faulty electrical connections affecting the wheel speed sensor, resulting in the ABS warning light coming on.
On average, it costs £60.88 for Clio ABS repairs according to our data.
Brake servo repairs, on the other hand, cost £40 on average.
2. Renault Clio suspension problems
Some Clios that were built in October 2002 have faulty suspension systems thanks to a manufacturing defect. The problem usually manifests in the form of the front left or right suspension arm breaking if subjected to impact.
The average cost of suspension repairs on a Clio is £128.14.
3. Accelerator problems
This issue relates specifically to V6 cars built between 2002-2004. The accelerator pedal sensor sometimes has a faulty contact.
Renault Clio 2005 to 2012
1. Gearbox problems
Clios built between November 2005 and May 2006 sometimes suffer gearbox issues wherein the gearbox malfunctions and switches to manual mode or third gear without driver intervention. A warning light is sometimes displayed.
Renault Clio 2010 gearbox issues are also fairly common.
On average, it costs £77.50 for gearbox repairs on a Clio based on our data.
2. Brake light problems
Brake light issues are frequently experienced in Clios that were built between December 2005 and February 2006. When grease in the circuit switches overheats, it’s possible for the brake lights to melt.
Fortunately, this is relatively cheap and easy to fix. New brake lights can be purchased for under £10, but you’ll need a trained mechanic to remove the melted light and fix any issues that have been caused by overheating.
3. Check engine light
This problem is particularly prevalent when it comes to the Renault Clio 1.5 dCI. An excessive buildup of engine oil on the spark plug electrode is usually to blame.
Cleaning and replacing spark plugs is a simple task that can be done at home, but if you’d rather have it done by a mechanic you can expect to pay £93.37 on average, though the price will depend on how many plugs need replacing.
4. Valve problems
This is one of the more serious issues that may be encountered by Clio owners, particularly in models built between September and November 2010. Engine valve problems could, in the worst case scenario, lead to the destruction of the engine.
These problems should have been resolved by Renault, so before you buy a second hand car make sure that that is the case.
Renault Clio 2013 to 2019
1. Brake hoses
On two separate occasions the Clio has been recalled over concerns about how the protectors over the brake hoses were fitted. If they are not fitted correctly this can cause the hoses to become worn, resulting in a fluid leak and reduced overall performance.
This issue mostly affects Mk4 Clios built up until April 2015.
2. Electrical wiring
Renault Clio electrical fault problems are common in almost all generations of the car, but there has actually been a recall for models built in 2019 due to the risk of short circuiting.
Electrical repairs for a Clio cost £57.29 on average.
Renault Clio 2019 to 2021
Power steering failure
Fortunately, this problem only affects a small number of Clios that were made between June and November 2019. A warning message might appear on the instrument cluster and you’ll probably notice less steering assistance as well.
If this issue happens to your car you’ll need the steering column to be replaced by a Renault dealer since it's subject to a recall.
Renault Clio general problems
There are some issues you might experience with your Clio that have been reported by owners, but these are more generic and haven’t been attributed to a particular version or year.
Boot lock problem
Some Clios develop a problem with the boot lock mechanism causing the boot to remain locked. This can happen intermittently. The cause of the problem is the motor, also known as the actuator or solenoid. A mechanic will be able to fix this issue for you relatively easily by replacing the part.
ECU problems are encountered in a wide range of Clios that were made prior to 2015. Symptoms can include the engine failing to start, no communication with the ECU, and an inactive main relay.
ECU repairs cost £235.65 on average for a Renault Clio.
Are Renault Clios reliable?
The most recent iterations of the Clio have considerably fewer common problems than some of the earlier releases and are generally deemed to be fairly reliable.
The fifth-generation Clio is built on a whole new platform, so we won’t know exactly how reliable it is until it’s been on our roads for a few more years, but Renault typically scores averagely in customer satisfaction.
Renault Clio recalls
|Wipers may not perform as expected||Nov 2012-July 2015|
|Rear wheel may detach||Feb 1st-17th 2016|
|Wheel may detach||April - Nov 2015|
|Rear spoiler may detach||Jan - Dec 2015|
|Reduction in braking performance||March 2013 - April 2015|
|Fuel may leak||April 2013 - April 2014|
|Braking efficiency might be reduced||November 2012-July 2014|
|Potential loss of control||Mar 2013|
|Engine valve fault||Sept 2010 - Nov 2010|
|Stop light failure||Dec 2005 - Feb 2006|
|Gearbox may malfunction||March 2006 - May 2006|
|Engine speed can differ from speed requested by driver||Sept 2002 - June 2004|
|Front suspension arm may break||Oct 2002|
|Possible loss of brake servo assistance||April 2002 - June 2002|
|Passenger airbag security||July 27 2000 - July 29 2000|
If you're having problems with your Renault Clio, WhoCanFixMyCar can help you find the right garage at the right price.
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