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Audi TT Timing Belt Problems



  • My timing belt on my 2001 roadster went out last night. I have 89K miles on it.
    $950 to repair if there's no other damage.
    I read about a class action lawsuit but don't recall getting a notice. What are the chances Audi would honor my claim.
  • dlkoch1dlkoch1 Posts: 1
    I didn't get the notice about the suit/claim,and yesterday my timing belt went out at 90,000 miles. Apparently the valves are bent and basically I need a whole new top end on my engine, $5,500. Has anyone had any success through their dealer getting this covered? Or have you had to go to Audi USA?
  • matlock339matlock339 Posts: 2
    edited April 2010
    I've got a 2001 Audi TT 225hp quatro roadster with 92,000 miles. Bought it used, black on black with black convertable top. Hard to find, took forever but love the car, awesome. No problems with mine, runs great.

    Got to admit after reading everything online I had gotten paranoid about even driving the car without having the timing belt checked. Though I had no problems I went ahead and bit it yesterday (3/31/10) and put a new timing belt on mine. Belt was the original and was fine. Could have gone another 10,000 miles easily. Looked like a 10 year old belt but had no signs of possible failure. Cost me $1,050 which included the water pump and all parts. Pump was also fine, plastic impeller was good too, no missing parts. Plastic was used apparently to save weight in the engine.

    My Audi guy said it has nothing to do with oil or anything. Said it had alot to do with how the car is driven and how well its been maintained. He said if someone had driven the car hard, it will almost always shorten the belt (and everything else) life. Course, could have been a batch of bad belts manufactured too. He said he has never seen a TT motor sling a belt in 12 years but he has seen the tensioner fail and allow the belt to come off and then cause the problems with timing. My tensioner had just started to show a very small amount of leakage of hydrolic fluid but nothing major. Not bad after 10 years.

    He told me too that the primary symptom was a rattle noise or clicking in the passenger side of the engine, near the cooling resevior which is the tensioner beging to relax and fail which will eventually allow the timing belt to flop, dismount and be torn in half. If you hear a rattling/clicking noise on the passener side of the engine, CUT IT OFF and TOW IT to the mechanic and have the belt and tensioner checked.

    Also remember that the timing belt is a dry system, oil has no contact with the belt so changing the oil won't make any difference. One more thing, he said belt failure could be caused by someone cheaping out on the gas. If they are filling the fuel tank with 87 octane, you can get back pressure in the chambers and valves that puts ALOT more stress on the belt and especially the tensioner. This will wear the tensioner arm out early and cause preamture failure. Use the 93 octane to extend the belt life, the engine is so small and so tight in there, early compbustion can really stress these little engines.

    Bottom line is that its how it was treated and driven. Good gas, driving normal, your belt should go 100,000 but when in doubt, check it, $1g is better than $5-10g's. He also said to be sure and change your fuel filter once a year or every 3 to 4 oil changes, the fuel line is so small and your fuel pump is so small that the filter can clog easily. I change mine on all my vehicles about every 25k to 30k which should be sufficient even on a tt, cost is about $75 to $100 if you let someone do it. My Audi guy worked for a dealship for 10 years so I trust him, take it or leave it...

    By the way, read the lawsuit yesterday, and all claims, inspections, etc. dealing the the class action had to have been filed and done by August of 2008. I would still try though, get you an aftermarket warranty if you are worried, that would catch most of the damage if you did have a failure.

    Matt, Birmingham, Alabama
  • I've had my 2002 TT since 2003, when I purchased it slightly used. It's had regular maintenance and not been driven hard, and it spends most of its time in a nice, heated garage. On Dec. 20th, the timing belt went at 59,000 miles and took out my head - 46,000 miles short of the 105,000 mile scheduled replacement in my owners manual. I was without a car for three weeks, waiting for parts during the holidays and blizzards. The first I learned about the class action suit was when I called Audi's customer service four days ago, which was suggested to me by my mechanic, who is, by the way, excellent. At any rate, two different customer service reps have now made excuses based on the "age of the car" and the fact that once it was off warranty, I chose to have service done by an independent - instead of the local over-priced dealership. The long and short is that I doubt they're going to accept any responsibility for this.

    I'm hardly ever out with the TT without getting a compliment on the car. I've come to think of it as a piece of road sculpture. Well for a few bucks at, one can design a custom magnetic bumper sticker. Normally, wouldn't put a bumper sticker on my car, but I think "Audi SUCKS!" plastered on the back of it would be an appropriate way to tell the world what I think about the treatment I'm getting right now. Just thought I'd pass this along in case anyone else is looking for a creative way to vent.
  • I just purchased a 2001 TT Roadster with only 4, 700 original miles. I live in Colorado and the car is in Missouri so I'm driving it back later this month.

    I talked to 3 different mechanics who said they would not drive the car a long way without investing in the timing belt service. Even with low mileage, these can get brittle and crack over time. So I'm going to make the additional $1,100 investment to have this service done before I drive it back.

    Like new, black with baseball optic leather seats. Beautiful! I've owned several Audi and VW cars and while I can't say I'm impressed with cost of ownership, they do know style!
  • atomicbatomicb Posts: 1
    Ok I just test drove a TT and loved it. Now I'm researching the vehicle more and see that there is a timing belt time bomb. With all things being equal if I'm willing to invest in the timing belt change and the cost of the vehicle is this car otherwise the little ballsy panty dropper I test drove?
  • yojomoyojomo Posts: 1
    Ok, lets start it off. I'm a women, bought a 2002 Audi TT Quattro last June! Yesterday the timing belt broke, valves bent, needs new water pump, and god know what else once they get in, massive engine work, 6500.00 for starters...Hell I only paid 10,500 for the car plus tax, had new racing rims put on for my birthday and NOW I am perplexed. Just 1000 miles shy of my 80,0000 mile maint. Would they have caught this????? I need advice, WHAT do I do. Thats more than half the cost of the vehicle...It was a play car that I haven't had for a year yet. Ok so we get emotional, My feelings are really hurt! Its a beautiful car. To Keep or Let Go? Thats the Question. If I let go, any suggestions on how I can make some $$$$ and not sustain total lost. This SUCKS!!!!
  • matlock339matlock339 Posts: 2
    Pretty complex as I see it and I am not afraid to repair something myself. Whole Passenger side of Motor has to come off to access the belts, tensioner, and water pump. Looked doable if you have a lift but forget it without one.

    For the money, a shop can do it for probably close to what it will cost you in time, tools, and aggravation. Just my two cents.
  • anndavanndav Posts: 1
    Yojomo, what did you decide to do with your car? I have been looking for a Audi TT to convert to an electric car.
  • Ok. Where do I start? First of all, I fell in love with a picture of an Audi TT and had to have one. After 3 years of searching for one I could afford, I drove 4 hours away to pick it up. It was in EXCELLENT condition when purchased with only 40,000 miles on it a year and a half ago. However, since purchase, I have found that paying cash for an Audi is great, but you had better go ahead and pay a car payment to yourself each month to cover maintenance and all the things that are going to break down. After about 3 months, started hearing a squeaky noise on the left front of the car. Took it to the Audi dealer - needed a new rack and pinion. Couldn't afford the Audi dealership price to replace it so I took it to a local big time suspension specialist and had it replaced for $1800 after three weeks of waiting for it to be shipped here from Hungary. Wow. Replace the battery at $150.00, brakes throughout for $1200, tires $1200. The electronic thing a ma jig on top of the battery at $300.00. (sorry for the language but I am at a loss for part names since I am a female). Ok, got everything possible replaced, or so I thought so I am good to go. Oh no, a clutch, are you serious? $4,000. At this point it is paid for and I am thinking, ok, whatever. I took it to a friend of mine who owns a performance clutch store who sold me the part only for $600 and had it put in by an Audi mechanic on the side for $1800. Great, back on the road. By the way, I LOVE MY AUDI TT. I actually cry when it breaks down because I love the car so much. However, I am beginning to have my doubts. Sooooo, another month goes by. It is about 12 months after having the rack and pinion replaced. Guess what? hearing that noise again so I take it IMMEDIATELY to the place that put it in. Looked it over really good and it is only a "non oiled bushing". They can replace it for $400 or the tech said it would be fine to drive it just like it is but its just noisy. OMG. Ok, broke at this point so I choose to drive it since the tech said no big deal. Another month goes by, guess what? That noise I heard was not a "non oiled bushing" it was the freaking rack and pinion- IT WENT OUT AGAIN - AT 13 MONTHS! - By the way, the warranty for a rack and pinion is only 12 months. Another $2000 spent on the rack n pinion. OK back on the road again. At this point with the price I paid for the car and the repairs, I am thinking OMG time for a new one. But I am on the road and happy. I took the car in the dealer on Monday last week, they had it for three days looking it over because I had hit a huge pothole. Guess what - $1800 worth of damage to the wheel and muffler but still driveable. While at the BLUEGRASS AUDI dealer, I told the service manager that I also heard a loose sounding noise on other front of the car. They had the car for three days and did not find anything wrong with the car other than the muffler and wheel being bent. Last night on the interstate I lost all function of the car. Belt Broke. Who knows what the crap that is going to cost me now. ANYBODY HAVE ANY INFO ON THE DEPENDABILITY OF A NEWER AUDI TT??????
  • zahavazahava Posts: 11
    Wow, Girl Calamity has over taken you. Sorry to hear about the troubles and it's continual repeating. The 01's through 03's have more issues. Read the forums and discussions on the 08's and 10's. They have different engines (mostly 6 cylinders) and are a tad more reliable. Some cars have the lemon mo jo and you might have one. There are folks out there that have 01s and 02's never have much trouble. I see them for sale with 150,000 miles on them. So, I would look at selling and trading for a newer model if you can. I just bought my 2nd TT and Plan to keep it 3 years. I got it from the original owner. It's got 58K on it. Has had all the work done on it. Guy bought it with 100 miles on it and drove it 11 years. This car will be used in the winter months and episodically in the summer. I am aware of reliability issues so I have a back up plan. I took a risk and will roll with it. If it breaks down alot then I will flush it. Read the forums. If you get a good one it should last a while. Good Hunting. Dump the lemon and get a rose.
  • anndav, did you get a tt to convert to electric
  • This is an old subject, but I wanted to provide an update to make sure the extended warranty under the settlement isn't forgotten. I have a 2001 TT with about 75000 miles. It has been regularly maintained, always at Audi dealers. I had the 80k service done early, a couple of months ago. Much like the other posts here, while driving to work on city streets a couple of weeks ago, it suddenly stopped running. I heard a clicking sound and managed to pull to the shoulder but couldn't get it to restart and thought it was a fuel problem. The car was towed to the Audi dealer that has done the service on it. They diagnosed a timing belt failure and extensive resulting engine damage (they had just inspected the TB in the 80k service but did not recommend changing it then). The cost for all of the repairs would have been about $7k. After doing some research, i found the information on the Audi TB settlement for this year's TT. When I provided the information to the dealer, they couldn't find it, apparently because the settlement is relatively old. I then called Audi of America's customer service center. Mark they was very helpful - he confirmed that I had an extended warranty on the timing belt to 105,000 miles, that Audi would covered all of the costs for the repairs and he provided the warranty information to the dealer. While I know that there aren't that many of these cars still on the road, i want to make sure anyone with a similar problem knows about the extended warranty, since it can save a lot on repairs if you have had it inspected regularly by Audi and the TB then breaks.

  • I'm debating about purchasing a 2001 Audi tt with about 70,000 miles on it, and after hearing about the timing belt problems I would definitely replace the belt immediately after buying it. However, the car is in South Carolina and I am located in Oklahoma, so I would already be putting another 900 miles on it before being able to change the belt. The car has never had any major problems and has been regularly maintained, but I'm not quite sure if I should take it. Any advice?

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