Renault Trafic Problems: Are They Reliable?

From common engine issues to electrical glitches, we’ll explore the hurdles faced by owners of this popular van model. Whether it’s transmission troubles or persistent brake concerns, understanding these issues is crucial for maintaining your vehicle’s performance and safety. Join us as we uncover practical tips and solutions to tackle these challenges head-on.

Key Takeaways

  • Regularly inspect and clean the EGR valve to prevent clogging and maintain engine efficiency.
  • Address any brake servo issues promptly to ensure optimal braking performance and safety.
  • Keep an eye on door lock mechanisms to avoid potential security and convenience issues.
  • Properly maintain the fuel pump to prevent fuel delivery problems and engine stalling.
  • Monitor gearbox performance and address any unusual noises or difficulty shifting gears promptly.
  • Check the master cylinder for leaks or malfunctions to ensure proper brake operation and safety.

Renault Trafic

1.6 EGR Valve Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic 1.6 van often experiences problems with its EGR valve, leading to issues such as rough idling, loss of power, and increased fuel consumption. The exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system is crucial for reducing emissions by recirculating a portion of the engine’s exhaust gases back into the cylinders.

These problems can arise due to carbon buildup in the EGR valve, causing it to stick open or closed, which disrupts the proper flow of exhaust gases. As a result, this affects the air-fuel mixture and combustion process within the engine.

Symptoms and Solutions

Drivers may notice warning lights on their van dashboard indicating an issue with the EGR system or experience symptoms like rough idling or reduced acceleration. To address these problems, regular maintenance is essential to prevent carbon buildup in the valve.

Regularly cleaning or replacing the EGR valve can help alleviate these issues and maintain optimal engine performance. Using high-quality fuel and ensuring timely oil changes can contribute to preventing carbon deposits that lead to EGR valve malfunctions.

Brake Servo Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic van may experience brake servo problems, leading to issues with the vehicle’s braking system. These problems can manifest as a stiff or spongy brake pedal, reduced braking efficiency, or unusual noises during braking. The root cause of these problems is often related to a faulty brake servo unit, which can impact the overall safety and performance of the vehicle.

Brake servo problems can be frustrating for drivers and pose significant safety concerns on the road. When encountering such issues, it’s crucial for owners to promptly seek professional assistance to diagnose and address the underlying problem. Ignoring brake servo issues can compromise the effectiveness of the entire braking system and increase the risk of accidents or collisions.

Potential Solutions

Upon experiencing symptoms of brake servo problems in their Renault Trafic van, owners should schedule an inspection with a qualified mechanic. The technician will assess the condition of the brake servo unit and identify any faults contributing to the issue. Depending on their findings, potential solutions may include repairing or replacing the faulty components within the brake servo system.

It’s essential for Renault Trafic owners to prioritize regular maintenance and inspections to prevent potential brake servo problems from escalating into more severe safety hazards.

Door Lock Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic is known to experience various door lock problems, causing inconvenience for the owners. One common issue is the failure of the central locking system, where one or more doors may not lock or unlock as intended. This could be due to a faulty actuator within the door mechanism, leading to inconsistent operation.

Another prevalent problem involves the automatic locking feature, which may malfunction and result in doors failing to lock when reaching a certain speed. As a safety concern, this issue requires immediate attention and repair to ensure the security of the vehicle and its occupants.

Causes and Solutions

These issues often stem from electrical faults within the van door locking system. Wiring harnesses can become damaged over time, leading to connectivity problems that affect proper door operation. Worn-out actuators or solenoids can also contribute to these issues.

To address these concerns, owners should consider consulting with a qualified mechanic who can diagnose and resolve any underlying electrical or mechanical faults affecting the door locks. It’s essential for professionals to inspect each component thoroughly before determining an appropriate solution.

Fuel Pump Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic may experience fuel pump problems, leading to issues with starting the van or poor engine performance. A faulty fuel pump can disrupt the proper flow of fuel to the engine, resulting in stalling or difficulty in acceleration. This can be frustrating for drivers and may lead to unexpected breakdowns.

A malfunctioning fuel pump could also cause a drop in fuel pressure, affecting the overall efficiency of the vehicle. When this occurs, it can result in decreased fuel economy and increased emissions. Drivers might notice a significant decrease in mileage per gallon due to inefficient combustion caused by inadequate fuel delivery.

Potential Causes

One common cause of fuel pump problems is contamination from dirt or debris entering the van fuel system. Over time, these particles can clog the filter and obstruct the smooth flow of fuel to the engine. Another potential issue is wear and tear on internal components within the pump itself, which can lead to diminished performance over time.

Regular maintenance and timely replacement of filters are crucial for preventing such problems. Using high-quality fuels from reputable sources can help reduce instances of contamination within the system.

Gearbox Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic is known to experience gearbox problems, which can cause significant issues for van drivers. One common problem is the gearbox becoming stiff or difficult to shift, especially when changing gears. This can lead to a frustrating driving experience and potential safety concerns on the road.

Another issue that Renault Trafic van owners may encounter is an unresponsive gearbox, where the vehicle fails to engage or disengage gears smoothly. This can result in jerky movements while driving and make it challenging to control the vehicle effectively.

In some cases, drivers have reported hearing unusual noises coming from the van gearbox, such as grinding or whining sounds. These noises often indicate internal mechanical issues within the gearbox, which could lead to more severe malfunctions if not addressed promptly.

Causes of Gearbox Problems

These gearbox problems in Renault Trafic vehicles can be caused by various factors, including worn-out clutch components, low transmission fluid levels, or even manufacturing defects. For example, if the clutch system is faulty or worn down due to regular use, it can directly impact gear shifting and overall gearbox performance.

Insufficient lubrication from low transmission fluid levels can contribute to increased friction and heat within the gearbox assembly, leading to premature wear and tear on critical components. Furthermore, manufacturing defects in certain models may also play a role in causing these gearbox issues.

Master Cylinder Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic may experience master cylinder problems, leading to issues with the braking system. This can result in a spongy brake pedal, low brake fluid levels, or even complete brake failure. When the master cylinder fails, it can compromise the vehicle’s ability to stop effectively and safely.

In some cases, drivers might notice that they need to press the brake pedal further down than usual before experiencing any braking action. There could be visible leaks around the master cylinder or beneath the vehicle where it is located.

Causes and Solutions

Master cylinder problems in a Renault Trafic can arise due to internal seal failures, corrosion of components, or simply wear and tear over time. Contaminated brake fluid can also contribute to these issues.

Regular maintenance and inspection of the braking system are crucial for early detection of potential master cylinder problems. If an issue is suspected, it’s essential to have a qualified mechanic examine and repair or replace the faulty component promptly.

  • Symptoms: Spongy brake pedal; low brake fluid levels; extended pedal travel.
  • Causes: Internal seal failures; corrosion; contaminated brake fluid.
  • Solution: Regular maintenance; prompt inspection by a qualified mechanic when issues are suspected.

Power Steering Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic is known to experience various power steering problems. One common issue is a faulty power steering pump, which can lead to difficulty in turning the wheel and increased steering effort. Another prevalent problem is a leaking power steering fluid, often caused by damaged hoses or seals. This can result in noisy operation and ultimately lead to complete power steering failure if not addressed promptly.

The electric power steering system in some Renault Trafic models may also encounter issues, such as sudden loss of power assistance or erratic behavior while driving. These problems could stem from electrical faults or sensor malfunctions within the system. Worn-out tie rod ends and ball joints can contribute to excessive play in the steering, causing imprecise handling and potential safety hazards.


To address power steering problems with the Renault Trafic, regular van maintenance checks are crucial. Ensuring that the power steering fluid levels are adequate and replacing any damaged components like hoses or seals can prevent major failures. When dealing with electric power steering issues, diagnosing electrical connections and sensors for faults is essential for resolving erratic behavior.

If encountering persistent difficulties with turning or maneuvering the vehicle due to worn-out tie rod ends and ball joints, it’s advisable to have these components inspected by a qualified mechanic. Prompt replacement of faulty parts will restore precise handling capabilities and maintain overall safety on the road.

Starting Problems

Common Issues

The Renault Trafic is known to experience some starting problems, especially with the glow plug system. This can lead to difficulties in starting the engine, particularly in colder weather conditions. The glow plugs are essential for diesel engines as they heat the air-fuel mixture during cold starts. When these fail, it can result in prolonged cranking before the engine finally starts.

Another common issue related to starting problems is a faulty fuel pump. A malfunctioning fuel pump can prevent proper fuel delivery to the engine, leading to issues with starting or even stalling while driving. If you notice that your Renault Trafic struggles to start or stalls frequently, it’s crucial to have the fuel pump checked by a qualified mechanic.

Solutions and Maintenance

To address starting problems with the glow plug system, regular maintenance is key. Ensuring that the glow plugs are inspected and replaced as needed can help prevent potential issues with cold starts. Using high-quality diesel fuel and additives specifically designed for cold weather can also improve starting performance.

When dealing with a faulty fuel pump, seeking professional assistance is vital. A certified mechanic will be able to diagnose whether the issue lies with the pump itself or if there are other underlying causes contributing to poor starting performance.

What Is The Best Year For Renault Trafic Vans In Terms Of Reliability?

Arguably, the best year for the Renault Trafic when it comes to reliability, is 2015. In 2015 and 2016 consecutively, the Renault Trafic took the award for Best Medium Van at the What Van? Awards. Additionally, in 2017 at the What Van? Awards the Renault Trafic was awarded with the Editor’s Choice Award. The 2015 Renault Trafic has proven itself for its reliability not just through winning awards, but through consistently high sales of the Renault Trafic year after year in the UK and Europe.

How Many Miles Will A Renault Trafic Last?

Unfortunately, no van will last forever, and this is true of the Renault Trafic. The warranty of the Renault Trafic is 100,000 miles, though of course many will comfortably last for over double this. However, when serviced regularly, properly maintained, and well looked after, there are reports of a Renault Trafic lasting for over 380,000 miles.


So, there you have it – the nitty-gritty on Renault Trafic problems. From EGR valve issues to gearbox and starting problems, these are hurdles you might encounter with your vehicle. Understanding these potential hiccups puts you in the driver’s seat. Regular maintenance and keeping an eye out for these common problems can save you a ton of hassle in the long run. Now go out there and show those Renault Trafic problems who’s boss!