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Audi A4 Maintenance and Repair

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  • About my car:
    Audi A4 Convertible 2004 (appx. 46000)
    4 year lease

    Problem:
    Oil Sludge

    Four days ago, my car just suddenly dies in the freeway and it's towed to the dealer. The problem, "Oil Sludge" they call it. So the dealer asks for my recent service receipts so I provide them with all my receipts and I have them done with synthetic oil. Some I've got it done outside of dealer and some from the dealer. Later, they decline the warranty due to lack of info and that I went over 2000 miles on one particular time with the service. Now they are asking about $7000 to fix the car. In this case, what should I do cuz I really don't have that kind of money. This really doens't make any sense to me cuz I had cars previously and they never break down even I go over 10,000 miles! Is there anyway I can talk them into a warranty? And is there any way I can just return this junk?
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,018
    Enter "sludge" in the discussion search for posts from other owners discussing this issue.

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email, karen@edmunds.com, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • My car does not heat well at the floor. Dealer has no idea what the problem is. Any advise. Jesse
  • dl7265dl7265 Posts: 1,381
    Its leased, why do you have to pay for any thing ?

    DL
  • webbiewebbie Posts: 1
    I have been ahving trouble with my 2002 A4 1.8T radio reception. I have the bose system and everything works great but the radio is not getting any reception. I asked the dealer and they said I need a booster, which is $300. I was wondering if anyone has had this problem and if they have any advice on how to fix it without spending $300 on a booster.
  • My clutch on my A4 is going out for the THIRD time at under 32,000 miles. I bought the car at 13,000 miles and had the first clutch go out at 22,000. It went out again at 28,000 and had to spend the $1500 to get it replaced. I thought it must have been a fluke but now it is going out in under 4,000 miles since replacement (2 months). I have been increasingly careful with the clutch and Audi will only tell me "wear and tear". Does anyone know how of any problem this might be, or how to get Audi to actually try and help me??
  • My 2004 Audi A4 Quattro 1.8T did EXACTLY the same thing! I had previously had the car towed to the dealership because my oil pressure warning light illuminated. After keeping my car for about a month (no kidding) they called and accused me of stealing their loaner car. I was like i'll drive the damn loaner car until they call and tell me whats wrong with mine. They never called and so I kept the thing; which was really kind of funny. Eventually, they informed me that all it needed was an oil flush and oil change, even though I had been having the oil changed with synthetic oil within the maufacturers suggested time periods. I did this and had no problems for awhile, but it ultimeately died when I was on a roadtrip in the middle of nowhere. At first they refused to honor the repair; which required a whole new engine! They said they had no records of me having the oil changed. My problem, was that I did not do this at the dealership, although it would have been free at the time. The dealership was just too far from my house to justify the drive and time vs. going to Jiffy Lube or something like that. I eventually was able to round up receipts to prove the oil had been changed regularly and they eventually did pay for the new engine under warranty. Shortly thereafter I received a form letter from Audi which spoke to a widespread defect involving oil pressure and oil sludge problems. The letter said if you had out of pocket repairs for the problem you would be reimbursed if you provided receipts. I wish I had saved the letter, but I don't have it anymore. That might be something you should look into.
  • richb1richb1 Posts: 9
    I'm not exactly sure, but I think that this might fall under your state's "Lemon Law" if it should have one. You may want to contact the Dept of Motor Vehicles about this. I know people who have gone as far as the Attorney General's Office in similar matters and they will investigate your complaint.
    Wear and tear seems to be Audi's mantra. Two weeks after my clutch went on my car with 54,000 miles and having it replaced, the worn brake pads light came on and had to have the front brakes of the car redone. This after they told me just before the warranty went off that the brakes were fine. They threw me a 10% discount on my bill as if that would make it right. I swear Audi programs their computer sensors to kick in after the warranty runs out. Always an adventure with this brand of "fine German engineering."
  • Here's my most recent problem with my A4, which seems to need repair at least monthly. It's a piece of crap. But I digress. I have a 2002 A4 (out of warranty, of course). While driving, the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) came on -- steady, not flashing. I made it to my destination without a problem, and the car feels like it's driving fine. Any ideas what the cause might be? Thanks for your help! :lemon:
  • Hi

    I have an A3 98 TDI 3 door, my drivers door window has stopped working and i cant seem to close it. I wonder if anyone can tell me how the door panels can be removed as i think the window may have come of a runner as the electric motor is still working but jams when trying to close.

    Thanks
  • tcasboytcasboy Posts: 214
    The light came on in my 2001 A4 at 51,500 miles. Just after the warranty expired. The dealer wanted 125 just to read the code. I found an independent shop to read the code for 88. They then fixed for a mere 88/hour in labor. All told it cost me about 180 for the repair. There was a vacumn leak and they replaced two small hoses. Not too big a deal, but with all the other problems I had been having and knowing that they would likely continue and start to get expensive, I went ahead and traded the car in.

    Autozone or somebody else might be able to read the code for you on the cheap, but my guess is that whoever does the actual repair is going to charge you to read the code anyway before they start work (which would make sense). As long as the light is on steady (according to the 01 owner's manual and the dealer) it was ok to drive. If it flashes then you need to have it towed because you could do some damage by continuing to drive it. I don't know about the 02 though.

    Good luck.

    TB
  • When I did service, I asked the technician, he told me that all the 2005+ / 2006 Audi A4 Quattro come with Mobil 1 Regular oil which is 5w-30 ( and he said you could use any other brand as long as it is 5w-30).

    However you can also use Mobil 1 synthetic 0w-30, but that's not neccesary. (It will be more durable but not provide better performance...that's what he said. Mobil 1 synthetic is used for the purpose of avoiding the sludge problem on A4 1.8T)

    Anyone has comments on this?
  • My heating system recently packed up on me (conveniently in the winter!!!). It blows out no air and occasionally (if I'm driving round a corner, etc) it switches on suddenly.

    Any ideas what could be wrong?
  • rjorge3rjorge3 Posts: 139
    Hi gang, well after picking up my car last week due to the engine light being on, I was surprised to see it again this morning!!! I called the dealer and basically I was told that the engine light can come up due to various reasons, among them: gas cap not being properly shut, misfire of the engine, vacuum problems, etc, etc, etc.

    I've told them that this is the last time that I will take the car for the same reason (this is the third time engine light is on), and if the engine light comes on again, then I will start Lemon law proceedings. Do you guys think I'll have a case if this engine light keeps appearing??? The car runs fine, but it is so anyoing to keep comming back for the same reason. Have any of you experienced the same problem so many times in such a short period of time?

    Your feedback will be greatly appreciated.

    R

    2005 A4 6M 1.8L
    Leased 1/11/05; current mileage 21,000
  • mweimwei Posts: 1
    Hi recently experienced a similar problem with my Audi A4 Quattro 1.8T 2002 that you have met before.

    The steering wheel vibrates at certain RPM 1200 - 1400. Above of below this range is fine. I just wonder how did you solve the problem. Any shave will be very appreciated.
  • Audi currently recommends 5W-40 Synthetic oil. The oil must meet the VW 502-00 standard. See the below link from Audi, listing those oils that meet the standard.
    http://www.audiusa.com/common/images/Audi_Approved_Oil_Chart.pdf
    This standard was implemented as a result of the sludge problems experienced a few years ago. Neither Mobil-1 0W-30 nor 5w-30 meet the standard.
  • sorry to hear all the bad stories about Audi's. Mine is similar.

    I bought my A4 of lease from the dealership in 2003. Since then I have poured an additional $8000 into the car for repairs. The last straw or go around, they are claiming I need a new computer ($3000 with labor). Enough already!! I subsequently took the car back and got a second opinion to find out the dealership mechanic failed to put back parts of my car. They were kind enough to fess up and put the parts back free of charge, but what kind of shady business in this? I would Never NEVER recommend an Audi to anyone that I like. :lemon:
  • rowlandjrowlandj Posts: 254
    Most folks I hear of on the Audi boards use the Mobil 1 0W-40, the European spec Mobil 1.

    Check the bottle as I believe it specifically lists the VW/Audi specs.

    JR
  • Be sure to check online for the lemon laws in your state. In Georgia 3 times is the charm. When the engine light comes on, the onboard computer should log what the problem is. I would ask the dealer for this information.
  • rjorge3rjorge3 Posts: 139
    Just wanted to share with you all my frustration (I'll tried to remain calm). I took my car this past Friday to be serviced(engine light on again). When I got to the dealer, I immediately requested the loaner, which I had reserved since the previous Monday when I made the appointment. The service manager indicated that they could take a quick look right away and perhaps have me out of the place in 30 minutes. After waiting patiently for 1 hour I went into his office to check on the status (bear in mind that I had already explained to him that I needed to get back to my office ASAP). He said that the mechanic found a leak in the car and that they needed to order a part (did not have the part in stock). Very calmly he said to bring the car back on Monday!! I cant write here what I wanted to tell him, but I guess he did not understand the purpose of a loaner (Dealer keeps the troubled car as long as they need it to get it fixed and us customers get a loaner to move around until the car its fixed....I explained that to him just like that). He kept insisting that I come back on Monday. At that point I thought that either he got early signs of mental retardation or my message was not being understood. I told him to take the car off the lift and I was going to another dealer.

    Today I sent a letter to that Dealership Service Manager, and cc Audi of America Customer Relations as well as NJ lemon law division (this is the third time that the engine light keeps coming on). I dont know if you guys have received such poor service at your Audi dealership, but I would never recommend you purchase a car from Flemington Audi. While the sales person was terrific and the sales process was excellent (not complaints there), the service dept has really left a very bad impression on me.

    I guess that after being treated one way by my wife's dealer (Lexus ES 300), you do get spoiled. I always have gotten loaners even from Miami dealers when we travel(we purchased the car in NJ).

    I had it with the poor reliability of this car and the crappy treatment that the service department seems to give its customers.

    Thanks for listening and I will be counting the 26 months or 780 days or 18,720 hours left on my lease, and I will return this car with a big smile. Never again!

    Thanks all

    p.s. I would like to know what type of experiences you've had when requesting a loaner from a dealer different than where you purchased the car. Life Quality Audi in BayRidge Brooklyn called me back to let me know that they "stopped" the loaners program for customers that bought the car somewhere else!!! While I understand that the "in-house" customer should get preferential treatment, at least they should make an effort to provide others "outsiders" with a loaner. Anyway, just let me know if you guys are able to get loaners from outside dealers.

    Thanks for listening to my cries :cry:

    2005 A4 6MT, 1.8
  • I have followed this board for some time and can relate to and share most of the frustrations w/ the previous posts here. Fortunately, I've been lucky so far and have not had any major issues like the previous posts where the car has been out of commission for days to weeks. I am the original owner of a '98 2.8 Quattro w/ about 92,000 miles. The car has always been serviced at Audi dealer(s) (at much expense) and only recently did I take it to an independent shop (for the 90,000 tune up- and saved about $1500). So far the car is running fine, and not giving me any major heart burn, but given the poor reliabity that seems to be inherent in this model should I bite the bullet and sell it now while it's running ok, or keep it until it breaks down (which hasn't happened so far-knock on wood)? BTW I have always tried to maintain it as suggested by Audi so far. So should I sell or keep? Any input from other 2.8 owners would be appreciated since it seems that most of the problems are w/ the 1.8T models.

    SP
    '98 2.8 Quattro
  • My first clutch & flywheel (A4 1,9Tdi) was replaced at 65,000 miles covered by my maintenance plan so I didn't worry too much. (I didn't even know it needed replacing until the service agent advised me) I was shocked that it had gone so soon, as I consider 65K to be a very short life for a clutch, but my service agent told me that was about average.

    My second clutch has now totally collapsed just 15,000 miles later and Audi are refusing to replace it under the maintenance plan claiming I must have abused the vehicle. I'm getting ready to fight with them, legally if necessary. My other car (Mazda) has just done 150,000 miles on its first clutch, so it can be my driving, and I've been driving for 35 years (+/- 500,000 miles!)

    I think the clutch design with the damper built into the dual mass flywheel results in a higher than normal heat build up on the front face of the clutch plate. My service agent confirmed that 30% of the clutch replacements they do require new flywheels also, and that doubles the cost of the repair.

    I think its time Audi acknowledged their clutch is a weak point on an otherwise good vehicle.
  • i am having the same problem with my 2005 a4. no sound in below freezing temps until car is completely warmed up. i have the bose system with xm. the dealer is playing dumb right now - what i expected. has anyone had a dealer acknowledge the problem so i can put my dealer in touch with them. thanks.
  • having the exact same problem. my dealer claims no reports of any problems from other owners or from audi. would like to hear from anyone else in this situation or anyone who has had a dealer acknowledge this defect.
  • rdsmdrdsmd Posts: 4
    They replaced my radio about 2 weeks ago and this week was the first cold weather (below 30) So far no problem, it is working fine. Audi is well aware of the problem.. it took 4-6 weeks to get the new radio... when I asked the service manager why he said that all existing radios of this type were cleared from parts, and they had to wait for a shipment from Germany. So obviously they are aware there is a problem with these radios. I had it serviced at Jack Daniels Audi in Fairlawn, NJ...if you want your dealer to call, they can speak to the service manager there. They said they have replaced several radios of this type, and so far no problems with the replacements. I think it is specifically the 2005 Bose system with XM that does it. By the way I did not have to reregister my XM.. I guess that part of the radio module did not have to be replaced.
  • cneffcneff Posts: 65
    Hi "Junk car owner"
    Sorry for the late reply, below is a list of my issues, which have been repaired many times only to return. To make it worse after a failure soon all would be fine again...all random events and witnessed by Audi techs. (2003 A4 3.0 Quattro)
    Failed key fobs
    Failed memory seat option
    Failed alarm
    Failed auto door locks
    Failed wipers
    Failed wiper fluid pumps
    Failed headlight washers
    Failed rear defroster
    Failed CD player
    Failed radio
    Failed speakers
    Failed tail lights
    Failed moon roof
    Failed dash lights
    Failed right side "reverse" tilt of mirror
    Failed Equal Brake Distribution CPU
    Failed trip/temp computer
    Blue smoke coming out of exhaust for awhile
    Engine warning lights
    Fluid dripping from front
    Suspension bangs
    Steering column problems

    Audi tells me I am having a unique experience...guess I have a real classic
  • cneffcneff Posts: 65
    pikerosa
    I am staying away from Audi for good, and not because I had a terrible experience with reliability. It is because I had horrible service. Audi absolutely refuses to stand by their products when things get ugly. It is not their fault but the dealers.
    They only way they respond is if you threaten them with some poor PR of legal attack.
    They have a lot of technical issues that they hope does not become public. As an example, Edmunds just did a Long term follow up with a 2005 A4. They had a key fob issue. By the way, what happens is the two CPUs stop communicating (can't unlock the car, arm the alarm or memory seats move all by themselves) and the only way to fix it is to have them re programmed, but that has not worked for Audi as the keys would lose the programming. So their answer was to replace the keys, however, many times the new keys would freak out just the same. Well, I can tell you I had 6 of those key fob events, and the QA manager from Audi in Germany who came out to examin my Audi disaster told me they fixed those key fob failures couple years ago. Guess they have not emptied the parts bin yet. In fact, my moon roof had the same issues as past moon roofs that he swore to me were repaired 100% in the 2002 line up. Guess I got retro parts (mine is a 2003). What was intriguing was how interested the German engineers were in all the failures I was having with my car (glad I could help), so what happened? Well, the car still does not work and Audi thinks enough people have worked on my case. Bottom line, my car has had over 20 issues and 150 days at 4 dealers - just wonderful or is that pathetic?
    Audi is not ready for prime time. There are many brands out there that back the product and understand that if you are honest with a customer they might just stick around awhile. As Audi says, Never Follow
  • cneffcneff Posts: 65
    rjorge3,

    Audi loaner program is as follows: this was told to me by a manager at Audi Corporate:
    The dealer has the right not to offer a loaner car to you, however, Audi does provide a loaner if the car will need to stay more then 1 day for repairs. A bit vague but call Audi Customer Care and push them.
    As for Lemon law electrical (which the engine warning light is) is tough to win. The car still runs, and is not endangering your life. However, Audi hates bad PR (they have so much of it). Call Customer Care and tell them that they have one more chance to fix it for good or you will be forced to contact the Automobile consumer protection agency (forgot actual name but it is inside your Audi customer care manual). If Audi does not respond and you want to keep pushing (as a last resort) call one of the lemon firms, very easy to find in the yellow pages or online. You might just get a quick settlement, like a month back. It is something.
    My Audi has been about as reliable as the weather and the service as professional as a salesperson short of quota at months end. I won't be back
  • I HAVE A 1995 AUDI A4 1800cc PETROL 85000 MLS DOES ANYONE KNOW WHY THE ENGINE IMMOBILISER IS PLAYING UP. WHEN I TURN ON THE IGNITION THE CAR SYMBOL ON THE DASH WILL SOMETIMES GO OUT AND THEN SOMETIMES COME ON AGAIN. THE CAR WILL START UP BUT CUT OUT IMMEDIATLY WHEN THIS HAPPENS. THEN THE NEXT TIME I TRY IT I HAVE NO PROBLEM. DO I NEED A NEW PART FOR THE CAR IF SO WHAT?.........JOSEPH 12 :mad:
  • Here in St.Paul/Minneapolis we have 2 Audi dealers owned by the same franchise but operate as separate companies. An Audi purchased in St. Paul does NOT qualify for a free service rental at the Minneapolis dealer and vice a versa.

    BTW, the St. Paul dealer is moving into a new $8 million facility on Monday. The Audi business must be profitable here in the twin cities!
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