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Audi A4 Maintenance and Repair



  • 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.

    '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
    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

    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
  • 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!
  • rjorge3rjorge3 Posts: 136
    Thanks cneff for your tip. I will keep documenting the problems and let's see what happens. I will definitely contact Audi Customer Care and I hope that they can at least repremend my dealer for the crappy service I received.

    Marleybarr, is a shame that even the same dealership (owned by the same family) does not provider loaners to someone that purchase the car in the other facility.

    I was wondering if BMW dealers are the same way. Any experiences anyone?????
  • martianmartian Posts: 220
    I ask because ny BIL's Audi has terrible FM sensitivity-it can'd pull in most FM stations when you are more than 25-30 miles away. I experienced a similar problem with an aftermarket PHILIPS car radio-it was bested by a OE Chrysler radio, which had much better FM reception. It turns out that FM car radios in europe don't need good FM sensitivity-they have repeater stations al over the place.
  • cneffcneff Posts: 65
    The techs told me Audi uses Panasonic. And the Bose radio is the same as the basic...they just choose a different code. Audi radios are not known for their reliability or quality.
    I had major static on FM stations and even playing CDs...not to mention certain features freaking out or the radio just failing altogether. Gone through two radios, many re programs and finally just gave up.

    Some tech might be honest and tell you Audi has had radio issues for almost 7 yrs.
  • This "leatherette" upholstery is really vinyl, right? What product(s) do you recommend to care for it? Thanks.

    Ken in N.C.
  • My engine makes a whining noise while accelerating from about 45 – 55mph. It doesn’t really happen at speeds higher or lower than that. It almost sounds like the sound an old AM radio makes. (but my radio isn’t on when this happens.) I brought to dealer and he agreed the sound wasn’t right, they said they tightened something, but it still makes the sound. Any idea what it could be? It sounds like it is coming from the driver side, close to the passenger compartment. Thanks
  • dl7265dl7265 Posts: 1,381
    Ive had good luck with Vinylex,you can get one half-liter for about 6 bucks at pep boys or where ever.

  • cicerocicero Posts: 51
    What kind of Audi do you have 1.8T, 2.0T or one of the 6'? What year,etc. That info may get you a response. I have not experienced that problem in my 2003 1.8T Q Tip. Good luck. Cicero
  • kocourkocour Posts: 11
    I have read previous posts from Audi owners who have had problems with their radios in cold weather. It was about -10 Fahrenheit here in the Midwest this morning so I tried the AM, FM, Sirius satellite radio and CD player in my 2005 cabriolet (it has Bose premium audio package) - and found that it does not work. I will be calling the dealer on Monday. Other Audi owners who live in cold climates may want to check their radios. For others who have had this problem - are the replacements radios better?
  • I just had the L and R Front control arms, L and R control arms and tie rod ends replaced on my 2000 A4. for about $ 300.00 labor and $630 in parts by a non dealer Audi repair shop. Is this reasonable? It started as only needing tie rod ends and escalated in to a huge job. I am sure I have been ripped off but still want to know the truth.
  • ll137ll137 Posts: 1
    Long time reader, first time poster..

    hello all, I would just like to share some of the experiences i've had with my '05 A4. I leased it Jan 2005 (before the new 2005.5 styles came out) got a great deal on it. (currently has about 17,000 miles) Its been a fab car to drive, great in the snow, handles and moves very well... everything was dandy til about 2 months ago...

    In Dec, the car started making a "whine" as I approached higher speeds (50+) and continues to get louder as you go faster. It was more of a clicking noise that came together to create a whine as you drove faster. I took it in to get it checked out.. turns out it was the transmission, and I needed a brand new one (I have the 6 speed manual)... so they ordered and got that replaced, car was in the shop for about a week. no big deal. I had a loaner.

    about a month later, the check engine light came on.. took it in, they said the code read as "mis-fire on 4 cylinders" turned it off, and told me not to worry about it.

    Yesterday, started the car to go to work.. the traction control and ESP lights came on and would not go off. I tried backing out and could not get the car to rev past 1500rpms, so basically could not get the car moving. tried re-starting the car, lights still stayed on.. left it running or about 5 mins, check engine light came on, and the car started shaking. So i had to call for a tow truck and took the car to the dealer.. wanted a loaner - to no avail.. spent about 5 hours waiting as they diagnosed the problem. (diagnosed the same code, mis-fire on 4 cylinders) and apparantly the traction control lights didn't come on when they drove it into the shop...They ended up just cleaning out the throttle body.

    who knows..Just wanted to share.. anyways.. thanks for listening/reading! :(
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