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Audi A6 Maintenance and Repair



  • Hi. I have an Audi A6 Quattro. 1998. I am not the original owner, so I was unaware of any recalls. Last week, my headlights quit working, and at the same time I also lost all features related to steering column... signals, horn, wipers. In my own research, found that there had been a RECALL for headlight switches... and then a recall to the recall.

    I bipassed a local Audi dealer due to questionable customer service and drove to an Audi dealer a little further away to have it repaired. I was later called and told that all repairs relating to the recall were complete... but I STILL DO NOT HAVE LIGHTS, SIGNALS, WIPERS OR HORN... and was told that this was unrelated to the recall. Very frustrating. They now want $260 for 'standard diagnosing'. THIS, after the tech had told me he had "never seen this recall part so badly melted without catching fire." And remember, I lost these other functions at the same time as the headlights.

    HOW IN THE WORLD can I lose these functions and it not be related to the recall... especially since I lost the functions at the same time????

    Anyone else with this issue? Anyone have solutions?

    Thanks in advance.
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    I posted a while back some issues with my wife's 2005 A6.

    Summary: Slow tight turns, such as into a garage or parking space caused a low vibration that shook the entire vehicle. My Jeep with lockers turned quieter and smoother.

    Despite efforts with replacing tires and such, the dealership continually told us "working as expected". Well, don't let me loose on the Internet. :) I found several TSB's that addressed this issue and took the information to the service advisor. Again, he told us, working as designed. So the lead tech went for a drive with us and immediately noticed what we were talking about (duh). He spoke to the SA and urged us to call Audi Customer Care.

    We have documentation from EVERY visit to the dealer where we mentioned this prior to warranty expiring. From 18,000 miles on, every visit made mention of this issue. Each time - working as designed.

    After calling Audi Customer Care, we made some progress and they wanted to try replacing the fluid in the differentials. Turns out in 2005 and perhaps part of 2006, Audi used a different fluid in the diffs than what is used now. We found, after a LOT of digging, a TSB that addressed our VERY issue (especially armed with the information about different fluid). Took that to the dealership, along with our info from ACC, and talked to the service Manager, a guy who has always taken care of us. (We've purchased 2 Audis, a VW, and a Mazda from this same dealer).

    They replaced the fluid in front, no charge, and charged us $67.00 to go ahead and do the rear one as well.

    The result: a car that is as quiet as it EVER has been. FINALLY! After 5 years of nagging them, we realized we were NOT insane!

    I'll dig up the TSB number and text of it if others find this of interest and possible use.

  • audi98a6audi98a6 Posts: 1
    I have a 98 A6Q with the same problem. Dealers keep saying it's normal. I don't buy that. What is the TSB info you found relating to this?

    In addition to that problem, I recently took the car in to the dealer for a number of complaints and repairs. Amongst them was the vibration, oil leak, front strut knocking, timing belt, water pump, thermostat (this has to be changed when the front is off the engine). They worked on the car for 1 week, then a couple of days later my timing belt broke loose (they had not torqued the tensioner bolt correctly). Had the car taken back to the dealer (50 miles), they worked again for another week. When I got it back the oil leak was still there. Back again to the dealer who eventually fixed the leak. The vibration (they said) was 'cured' by replacing the rear transmission mounts. Needless to say this was not the cure, the problem was still there. They re-imbursed me for the mounts and now they do not wish to see me again.

    However, since that time I have been experiencing a vibration when driving at around 50mph, seems to be associated with transmission shaking etc. Reading other blogs it would resemble the transmission shaft problem - out of center.

    Any else have such luck?
  • dochumdochum Posts: 4
    I am having trouble with an A6. I have scanned it and have it come up with a fuel and metering code. I checked and am not getting power to the fuel pump when cycling the key. When starting fluid is sprayed into the bellows it will momentarily start. I replaced the crank sensor and check the FP fuse and still nothing. Plenty of fuel in the tank. I am wondering if it has an automatic shutdown control if the timing reference from the crank to the cam (timing belt stretched or jumped) is too far out of the parameter? Something is causing the pump to not be energized. I'm at wits end here and any help would appreciated. Thanks in advance.
  • jkaudia6jkaudia6 Posts: 77
    Hi Dochum:
    Tell me what year/model your car is.
  • dochumdochum Posts: 4
    It is a 2001 A6 2.7 L Quatro
  • jkaudia6jkaudia6 Posts: 77
    edited May 2011
    Hi dochum:

    Try this web page if your mechanically inclined.
    If not Get professional help from a certified Audi
    shop or dealer. Without the correct diagnostic tools your
    spending more money than you need to,(Hit and miss).
    If your car is in the following PDF start reading and get smart before
    you go to the dealer.
    Best of luck
  • dochumdochum Posts: 4
    Have been looking at that link, but it really doesn't have any flow charts or explain exactly what happens to kick the fuel pump on. I am a mechanic by trade, mostly domestic stuff, but I have done a timing belt and water pump on a similar model before. Thanks for trying to help.
  • jkaudia6jkaudia6 Posts: 77
    Hi dochum!
    A couple of other suggestions:
    If you have a VAGCom Diagnostic device to read the error codes;
    Then Go to Erwin.Com the Audi Self Help web page sign-up for access
    either hourly,daily or long term.
    Then collect your VagCom Data from the Vehicle including VIN and error data
    locate the information you need and repair procedures on the web page.
    If this is a customer vehicle you can recoup your related cost to Irwin.
    If it's your private vehicle you have the advantage of dealing with Audi direct.
    Good Luck
    Best Regards
    jkAudiA6 :shades:
  • dochumdochum Posts: 4
    Thanks for the heads up. I have a Nemesis scanner that is capable of OBD II. Would that work? Not sure exactly what the VagCom comprises, but I have searched on ebay and about all I find are interface cables and software that are used on a laptop. Is that what you are talking about?
    Much regards!
  • The 1998 Audi A6 is a jinxed car. It is a P.O.S. period. I paid $10,000 for the vehicle and put the same amount into it for the 6 years I had it. First the wheel bearings, drive shaft, new brakes and then the tranny. Oh, did I mention before all of those expenses I put on new tires and mass air flow system, and regular maintanance? (all original Audi parts)That comes out $277.00 a month I pissed away in my six years having it. I could have bought an American car like my Dodge Caravan SE, which I've had for 11 going on 12 years, which I have invested no more than $2000 in for repairs.

    I too...Never again will purchase an Audi P.O.S
  • 98aa698aa6 Posts: 2
    after reading this webpage it makes me second guess my decision to buy my 1998 audi a6. a few of the problems that are being talked about are happening on mine. it vibrates when i turn, my air conditioning system is really loud, and i feel like the car should have more bottom end acceleration. where shud i start?
  • 98aa698aa6 Posts: 2
    also. i baught it with 93000 miles and now at 97000 i worry about the timing belt. how do i find out if it has been done by the prvious owner? i hear that if it goes its pretty much going to ruin my engine. but the quote seems very expensive
  • Guys I've got a problem. Above the temperature I've got a light sign and I don't know what is that. Could somebody help me?

  • jkaudia6jkaudia6 Posts: 77
    edited August 2011
    HI Dochum!
    Been out of the loop for a while,sorry !
    On Board Diagnostics, (OBDII) should work.
    AS for flow charts of start procedures you will have to go to The Internet,
    Use the search "Audi self Study program (ssp) list for starters. then find the (ssp) that is for the car your working on, they are organized by groups; drive-train, electrical ........
    Your fuel/ start problem is most likely a sensor problem first, then electrical followed by mechanical. The central ECU which processes all this related data sends the messages to the individual components. Please note that SSP's are not intended for mechanical repair, those documents can be downloaded from on an individual basis.
    Hope this is not to late but is good for further reference.
    Best Regards
  • jkaudia6jkaudia6 Posts: 77
    edited August 2011
    Yo Brooksman (fritzmuldoon)
    I hear your frustration!
    Got to tell ya, I'm not much of a fan when it comes to Acronym's, I found 250 Plus (P.O.S.) after doing a search on Google. The other side of this coin is I worked within the automotive industry and around vehicles for long time and I think I remember what P.O.S. stands for even though acronym's were not in style back in the day, if you get my drift.
    Sorry you had a bad experience with a used car.
    But in all fairness, you got to separate between normal wear and tear and mechanical failure. I made an earlier post about late ninety Audi's but I guess you did not see it.
    In short ! When buying a used vehicle, no matter what brand, you got to do your home work, before jumping in the fire. As for your "Dodge Caravan SE, do you remember
    Lee Iacocca? It looks like Chrysler could use his help again. Or to put it another way Who owns Chrysler now? Could be the title of a "New Game show".
    PS: A very good friend of mine just purchased a "USED 1999 Audi A4 Quattro" with 268000 Kilometers (180,000 miles) 2.8 Ltr. V6 5V (five valve) and it runs like a watch.
    In closing!
    Show me a car and I'll show you a money pit. The only question is how deep is the Pit?
    Best Regards
    Have a great day
    jkAudiA6 :blush:
  • jkaudia6jkaudia6 Posts: 77
    Hi edres1691!
    Start with the obvious first, things you can check yourself: Fuses which may have blown.
    This info is in your owners manual, location of fuse box, Amperage values etc.
    The next step would be an OBDII Error check which may or may cost you.
    If you have the car serviced where the OBDII test is performed then ask them for a price break should you have the car repaired at the same shop.
    In any case ask for the Error report printout, your paying for that information and this is all about information. I paid about 30 dollars for my last test, They should be able to print out specific system areas, you don't necessarily need error reports for drive train data if your problem is dash board related, for example.
    If that does not help, then you will most likely need to find a reputable Audi Service center.
    Could be a relay problem, could be a Central processing unit gone bad, could be a "Cold Soldier joint on the Printed Circuit board, (PCB) which is within the instrument cluster this last item can be repaired by a reputable third party firm that specializes in Automotive electronics. This does not necessarily need to be a brand new part from Audi if you don't mind waiting for repair from a third party specialty firm. Internet search should reveal firms that do this kind of work.
    Trouble shooting electrical can be expensive but much of that will depend on your knowledge before going to the shop.
    There is also a switch related to the shifting lever for your "Automatic Transmission. This switch sends signals to the "Central Processing Unit" (ECU) which in turn sends
    data to individual components pertaining to vehicle access and movement.
    If you do a "Google Search" in the internet there are fairly complete list of "Error codes" for Audi which will bring more sense to your vehicle problem. The place to look would be (VAG/OBDII Error Codes)

    Hope this has been of some help.
    Best Regards
  • If you by chance have the TSB info please send it to me ... I have an 05 A6 4.2 that has that same issue
  • dwengerdwenger Posts: 3
    My husband just finished putting in new seals,water pump,thermostat,timing belt.
    He took off first the headlights,then the bumper and then belts and other parts.(You can look at the video at the you-tube).It took him 2 weeks to work on it every night after he's real work.And when you put the timing belt back it has to go exactly ,can't be off even one notch.
    Now everything works except we still have a one more oil leak ,somewhere from the camshaft tentsioner. And he is worried that something could go wrong...I am about to through up!
    Welcome to the Audi owner-machanics club!!!
    Eventually we probably have to sell the car,even so I love how it drives.
  • bigdadi118bigdadi118 Posts: 1,207
    Auto headlight height adjustment problem detected, motor or the rod sensor by the strut.
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