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problem with Audi Emissions 'fix'

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Hi All,

My car was one of those affected by the VW emissions scandal. On 18 November 2106 I took my car in to have the ‘software fix’ for this on the advice of Audi.


Around 4 weeks later I got a flashing warning light (engine management/coil glow plug system) on my dashboard and the engine went into limp mode. The next time I started the car it was back to normal.

Over the coming weeks this started to happen more frequently and another light came on bold (engine management fault). I searched around online to see if anyone else had reported anything like this after the emissions work, but didn’t find anything. I didn’t want to take it into Audi to charge a fortune to plug a computer into it, so I bought a plug in from amazon to see what the error code was. This came back as P0403 Exhaust gas recirculation malfunction.


Reading around I find this is common in diesel cars so I thought I’d get the local garage to take a look at it during my MOT and service (March 22nd). They suggested that I replace the EGR valve, in their experience cleaning it would only last a few weeks before the problem started again. I asked for a quote. They got back to me a couple of days later to say that there was a 6-8 week lead time for this part as Audi have had to replace a lot of these due to there being a problem with the software fix. They said it’s a known problem to Audi and I should go there for a repair and ask about warranty.


I got in touch with Audi and my car is booked in next week for the diagnostics (no mention on the call of a charge for this), they will then take it from there. The dealer said that they would follow the process and contact Audi if it is indeed the EGR valve that needs replacing caused by the emissions work.


I have read around and found that some people have had money put towards the work by Audi 97% was mentioned on one site. I personally think that this should be fully covered. If it wasn’t for my car going in for the software fix my car wouldn’t have the problem. What do you guys think and do you have any advice?

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To update this, my car was in the garage yesterday to do the diagnostic check and they have admitted that the 'software fix' has caused the problem. They kept the car and will be repairing it today for free. I caught a glimpse of the parts lits she had in her hand and it totalled £500+ for the parts alone.


She also mentioned that this wasn't the first one of these she had in today. If anyone reading has this problem they should return the car to the garage that has done the software fix and, all bering well, they will get it fixed for free.

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  • 2 weeks later...

an update to this.


A week after the EGR cooler was replaced the car lost power on the motorway and wouldn't go over 2400 revs. I took it to the Audi garage and the next day they diagnosed it to be the turbo boost pressure sensor that needed replacing. They said it would cost £210. Anyway, they fitted a new one and it didn't resolve the issue and the fault was in fact the turbo itself. They said they would cover the £210 but as the turbo fault wasn't linked to the software fix then I would have to pay for the new turbo and labour. I argued that there is a lot of evidence on the internet about a failed EGR valve causing a turbo to fail and that there was a link. He spoke to his manager and has now agreed to cover these costs.


The car is still in the garage now awaiting the parts for the fix.


I don't have a lot of faith in the car anymore. It ran perfectly before the software 'fix' and now it is one problem after another. I don't think it will be long before the DPF fails, as it seems the fix causes a lot more soot to go through the engine. When the parts arrive I will ask if they will reverse the software fix, but I don't have high hopes of it happening.

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  • 1 month later...

So the turbo was fit and I got the car back on the 27/4/17. The car was noisier and a bit shuddery in low gears, but I though it might need some bedding in and I was due on holiday for a week in early May so I didn't need the hassle of taking it into the garage again.


I returned from holiday and the noises were worse, I was getting plumes of white smoke out of the exhaust and the car was juddering like it wanted to stall while cruising in high gears. I took the car back in on Friday 19/5/17 at 3.30pm. I asked them then if they would return the original software back onto the car, but they said it can't be done. So I asked them to make me a very reasonable offer on the car considering they had caused the faults, they told me to call Audi UK, again they can't do that.


I was surprised to receive a voicemail on Monday at 10.20 saying my car was ready to be collected. I drove to the garage and asked what they had done to it. He would discuss with the technician and let me know. He returned and said that they have found the source of the noise, a pin prick sized hole in the turbo (cooler- I think he said) and they would be keeping the car in, they would call me to let me know. It seems that they were going to return the car to me having not found the fault until I questioned them and they checked it again while I was there.


The soap opera continues.

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  • 4 months later...

Anybody who has the software update really ought to be asking for a complete emissions system fix. Unless you do a lot of high miles at speed the cars generally will fail as they will clog up with carbon.

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According to VAG the 'fix' doesn't cause any problems. You can ask for a complete emissions systems fix, but I know what the answer will be.


They are only dealing with your car if it has a provable problem, this is generally only if it has broken down or gone into limp mode. Noisiness, lack of power and reduced MPG is being ruitinely ignored by VAG garages. They take your car in, investigate it for a couple of weeks and return it to you saying there are no issues.

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According to VAG the 'fix' doesn't cause any problems. You can ask for a complete emissions systems fix, but I know what the answer will be.


They are only dealing with your car if it has a provable problem, this is generally only if it has broken down or gone into limp mode. Noisiness, lack of power and reduced MPG is being ruitinely ignored by VAG garages. They take your car in, investigate it for a couple of weeks and return it to you saying there are no issues.


"According to VAG the 'fix' doesn't cause any problems." : True to quote them saying that, we've had a letter from them saying "no adverse effect on official CO2 emissions figures, fuel consumption figures, engine output, performance, torque and noise." They also note "software update does not have any negative effect on the durability of the engine or its components".


Mind you, even though it doesn't cause any problems, they've put in place a "goodwill policy" "in respect of a failure of the EGR, fuel injection system or emissions after treatment system" (provided it is within 2 years of the 'fix', and for vehicles under 160,000 miles).. where they would "consider the complaint very carefully" .. to "respond to the consumers' reasonable concerns".

You know, to fix the problems that don't happen and that aren't as a result of the 'fix', as the 'fix' doesn't cause any problems.


This "goodwill policy" has associated inclusions and exclusions, too.


"Emissions Control / Engine management" warning light. Our local independent garage (who we trust not to vastly inflate 'what work needs doing') diagnose an EGR fault code.

We phoned VAG (and after a complete failure to log the first call, 2 days later (after no callback as promised) we got someone who did log the call.

We were advised we shouldn't believe everything we read on the Internet (and in particular not to believe



and that there wasn't a problem as a result of 'the fix'.


Well, OK, maybe there was a teensy-weeny bit of a problem, but it only affects 1% (or less) of cars that have had the 'fix'.


So, Actually (I replied!), statistics are useful as a measure of risk, but mean nothing to the individual (I've been careful not to discuss my job in detail on CAG, but its safe to say that a part of it is in advising clients (before they spend vast sums based on statistics that "prove" what they are being flogged is the best thing since sliced bread) on what exactly the statistics 'prove" [rarely PROOF of anything, but rather a better indication of what they 'suggest', and if they suggest it to the level the sales hype pushes...)


"So, actually, ......if "I go to the doctor and the doctor says "You get the choice of 2 diseases. Disease A that has a 99% chance of your being dead at 5 years, and Disease B that has only a 5% chance of you being dead at 5 years" . Obvious (unless you want to die), you pick disease B.

And it is only 1% affected, (and its a problem with a car, rather than being dead), so 1% sounds great!! ..............


But, I'm not being given the chance to choose Disease A or B.

Also, If I got disease B, it doesn't matter to me and my family that 95 out of 100 survive 5 years, if I'm still one of the 5 that don't (and I'm still dying or dead!).....


So, he moved swiftly along from how great it was that it was only 1% of the cars that had the 'fix' that got a problem that couldn't have been caused by the 'fix' anyway.


The car was booked in to be checked.

He finished the call by saying "hopefully, your car won't be in the 1%".

No, actually, hopefully it will, because then VAG are fixing it at no cost to me!. It was. They did (EGR valve replaced).


One month later:

Different warning light this time : "Glow Plus / Engine Management" warning light. (Should that be "Plus" or "Plug"??

http://www.volkswagen.co.uk/owners/warning-lights says it is "Glow Plus"......)


Local Garage: EGR fault.

VAG Dealer: we'll do the diagnostic for free as the EGR was only 1 month ago. Result: "soot build-up blocking a link pipe" (which, apparently, is part of the EGR system).

Replaced (again 'at no charge, due to "goodwill")


Apparently, it is all our fault. Despite driving within the manufacturer's instructions (including regular and frequent 'runs' to clear the dpf even though the dpf warning light has never come one [probably due the regular 'runs' at between 2k - 2.5k RPM as advised by VW if the recent driving has been mostly urban), and the manufacturer's instructions not saying "don't use supermarket fuel', it is our fault, for using supermarket fuel, and we shouldn't.

Because the supermarket fuel doesn't have the additives of the premium fuels, (even though we routinely use Redex if we are using fuel that doesn't already have 'engine cleaning additives).


Because its our fault we are using fuel that the VAG isn't willing to commit in print to saying out and out : "shouldn't be used".

And we are using additives that aren't the premium ones that VAG isn't willing to commit in print to saying out and out : "should be used instead of supermarket fuel".

For problems that aren't caused by their 'fix' (or but might be caused, but only for 1% of cars).

That they are fixing free of charge, because there isn't a problem, despite all the reports on the internet.


Should I be expecting further woes, if I keep using the car in an urban environment?.

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I'm considering getting the car remapped to a pre fix state by an independent garage. I just don't know whether to bite the bullet to do it now or after my 2 years 'goodwill' gesture ends.


I'm kinda holding off just now in the hope that the pressure being exerted on VAG will make them finally give in and reverse it themselves.

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