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  1. #1
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    Audi A3 MOT Fail, Looking For Advice.

    Hi all, new round here & hoping I could get some advice.

    I have an X reg Audi A3 SE 1.6 which I believe is the facelift edition and to cut a long story short it’s just failed an MOT and I need a few answers, I’ve searched the forums but not found nothing concrete to my questions so any help would be much appreciated.

    Here’s the list of failed items written exactly how they are on the test certificate:

    BAL+ALIGN
    Headlamp aim low

    ELECTRICS
    Nearside headlamp adjuster broken
    Headlamp aim incorrect
    Offside headlamp has a product on the lense so that the light output is severely reduced

    ELECTRICS
    Stop bulb
    Centre stop lamp has less than 50% of the light sources illuminating
    Anti lock braking system warning lamp indicates an abs fault
    I took the car to a MOT garage I’ve not used before as it was more for convenience if anything but I’m starting to regret it now as I feel they’re trying to pull a fast one. I’ve only had the car for a year now but it was owned by a good friend before so I know it’s history & that it had flown through the MOT the last couple of years.

    So to start the headlamp adjuster is broken, I for one think this was done by the garage themselves I’ve since found out they have a bit of a reputation but I’ve got no way of proving it, I usually take pictures of the engine bay etc before a MOT but on this occasion I totally forgot. As you can see from the picture it’s totally missing, is there anywhere I can buy this part on its own/have a part number?

    2013-10-10 18.27.43.jpg

    Then the second thing is “Product on the lense” which conveniently is the other head light. I will say I have noticed the lights have gone ever so slightly yellow and from what I can tell in the forums it’s a common problem but I really don’t think this is that bad on my car, I have another friend with an Audi A3 and has just got another years MOT on his car and they are a lot worse than mine. Have a look at the pictures below and let me know what you think.

    2013-10-12 17.30.47.jpg
    2013-10-12 17.30.37.jpg

    and to top it off the MOT garage want to charge me £166 per headlight fitted (REALLY?). Anyway I can if worse comes to worse and I can't get the adjuster or am not able to clean the headlights get them new for about £73 per head lamp from Euro car parts but then comes the fitting. From what I've read around the forums I have to remove the bumper and possibly the wheels? Can anyone confirm of this is the case on the facelift model or is it just the bumper? If so can someone push me in the direction on how to remove it thanks.

    Anyway next up is the third break light I wasn't even aware this was a percentage requirement, anyhow I'm assuming this isn't a big job but any info would be great though, do I replace the LEDS, the whole unit or can I simply just disconnect the light altogether?

    Next is the ABS light coming on & off. To cut this story short the previous dash in the car completely died on the previous owner (my friend) and he had to replace it with one he bought from the scrap yard, turns out this one is also on it's way out, the rev counter doesn't work & the led's/lights look light the are starting to fail.

    I have noticed that on the very odd occasion the ESP & ABS lights light up randomly and a simple turning on & off of the engine make them disappear, lucky for me the MOT tester has managed to activate the light during testing equalling a fail. I'm almost certain there is not actually a problem with the ABS as it was recently serviced and checked over so I've always put this down to the dash slowly dying but it could well be a bit of crap in a sensor on the wheel. I have a friend who can 'delete the error code' so it doesn't show but will show for the initial start of the engine to pass the MOT but to be honest I haven't a clue what this involves exactly nor whether I should do it or not

    Sorry for the long winded post just after a bit of advice really so any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks
    Adam

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  3. #2
    "Stick a V8 in it!"

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    Fault code scan on the ABS module required.

    For the headlamps, i'd goto a breakers and get a pair of decent ones and just swap them.

    Essentially thats the only two faults, barring a brake lamp you can surely fit a new bulb!

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  4. #3
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    Thanks for the quick reply.

    Quote Originally Posted by aragorn View Post
    Fault code scan on the ABS module required.
    Sorry what do you mean exactly, care to elaborate?

    For the headlamps, i'd goto a breakers and get a pair of decent ones and just swap them.
    Visiting the local breakers is next on my list I went the weekend but did not make it in time though before it shut. If I do manage to get a set how easy are they to fit, is the removal of the front bumper necessary?

    Essentially thats the only two faults, barring a brake lamp you can surely fit a new bulb! Yes the rear third brake light is the least of my worry's just wondering if its easier to replace the leds or replace the unit itself, again not sure if it's easily accessible. Had a quick look at the weekend it seems I have to remove some sort of trim on the rear window?

  5. #4
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    I though Brake Light required illumination was 75%, but I could be wrong. If it's the high-level light, you'll just need the internals, not the cover! get one from the breakers or get a quote from Audi - they can't be that expensive.

    Never let the garage that diagnosed the faults do the repair work! if you do it the first time, they'll have a vested interest in failing it again.

    Always take it to those you've learned to trust. It's an expensive way to learn, but you probably won't make the same mistake again in a hurry.
    Last edited by Artimus; 14th October 2013 at 18:15.
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  6. #5
    phil miller's Avatar
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    Adam were are you located dude?
    ​Wish Rachel would let me have my TDI mk5 back


  7. #6
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    Nope, at least 50% of the "light sources" must illuminate. So if for exmaple, you have 7 segments to your brake light. 4 don't work = fail/3 don't work = pass. Same applies to side and stop lamps.

    Bumper needs to come off to change the headlamps. It is possible to leave the wheels on and just turn the wheels on full lock to get access to the screws.

    In regards to the ABS, it needs a diagnostic machine connecting which will then scan the ABS unit and point towards a possible cause of the light illuminating.
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  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artimus View Post
    Never let the garage that diagnosed the faults do the repair work! if you do it the first time, they'll have a vested interest in failing it again.

    Always take it to those you've learned to trust. It's an expensive way to learn, but you probably won't make the same mistake again in a hurry.
    You don't need to tell me again, I'm hugely regretting it now. I have a regular mechanic/mot test center but as I said it was convenient at the time for me, not so convenient now i guess

    Quote Originally Posted by phil miller View Post
    Adam were are you located dude?
    Uxbridge, West London.

    Another question, if I was to take it to another MOT test center now that it's failed once and its all digital I assume they will have the failures on record and insist on checking the failures thoroughly now?

  9. #8
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    they prob wont pay any att to what its failed on, REMEMBER the MOT is purely in the tester opinion, there for another tester may advise what the first has failed, very grey area dude

    shame your so far away, id have sorted it for you mate
    ​Wish Rachel would let me have my TDI mk5 back


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    Quote Originally Posted by phil miller View Post
    they prob wont pay any att to what its failed on, REMEMBER the MOT is purely in the tester opinion, there for another tester may advise what the first has failed, very grey area dude

    shame your so far away, id have sorted it for you mate
    Thank for your help anyway much appreciated.

    So the front bumper needs to come off to remove the headlights, is this literally just screws? Is there any sort of instructions anywhere?

  11. #10
    "Stick a V8 in it!"

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    For the ABS problem, either get yourself a VCDS cable (genuine are 250ish, but you can get cheap ones on ebay with limited functionality for around a tenner that will do what you need) and scan the ABS module, or get someone who has a VCDS lead to do the scanning for you.

    While it might seem tempting to goto another more familiar/friendly MOT station in an attempt to scrape thru, the faults picked up are all a) minor, and b) need sorting anyway, so it seems a bit pointless to me.

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  12. #11
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    I've replaced the LEDs in my third brake light before. It is easy. There are posts on here which will be more informative that I've seen before (try a quick search), but from what I remember it's just a case of removing the boot lid trim and rear window surround. I'd recommend you remove an LED before buying a new one so to make sure it is the correct type.

  13. #12
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    The headlight adjusters are prone to breaking, t8ups is dismantling some headlights for me right now, and there maybe be some adjusters left over. If you are willing to do the repair yourself it could potentially save you the cost of the headlamp.
    Bumper comes off very easily with wheels still on the car.

    The yellow can be buffed off. plenty of people, myself included have used a headlight restoration kit or wet and dry paper.
    '02 TDi 130 Sport: Mods to date: BXP 160 conversion, EGR delete, Decat, Helix SMF fast road clutch, 312mm front rotors, full DIS , CC, Xenons.
    VCDS fully registered and happy to help.
    *Need a Spare Key or Remote? SKC retrieval? Clock/ECU swap or milage correction? I am fully insured to work on your vehicle! Offering a good deal and quality service to ASN members Nationwide!*

  14. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by aragorn View Post
    For the ABS problem, either get yourself a VCDS cable (genuine are 250ish, but you can get cheap ones on ebay with limited functionality for around a tenner that will do what you need) and scan the ABS module, or get someone who has a VCDS lead to do the scanning for you.

    While it might seem tempting to goto another more familiar/friendly MOT station in an attempt to scrape thru, the faults picked up are all a) minor, and b) need sorting anyway, so it seems a bit pointless to me.
    Thanks, going to see a friend of a friend who can plug this car into a computer on Friday who can hopefully diagnose the problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by s3mad_dude View Post
    I've replaced the LEDs in my third brake light before. It is easy. There are posts on here which will be more informative that I've seen before (try a quick search), but from what I remember it's just a case of removing the boot lid trim and rear window surround. I'd recommend you remove an LED before buying a new one so to make sure it is the correct type.
    Cheers I'll have a look on the forum to see what I can dig up.

    Quote Originally Posted by @udi A3 View Post
    The headlight adjusters are prone to breaking, t8ups is dismantling some headlights for me right now, and there maybe be some adjusters left over. If you are willing to do the repair yourself it could potentially save you the cost of the headlamp.
    Bumper comes off very easily with wheels still on the car.

    The yellow can be buffed off. plenty of people, myself included have used a headlight restoration kit or wet and dry paper.
    Thanks for the reply I'll contact t8ups to see if he has the bits I need. So am I right in saying there is no way you can buy this part on it's own even from audi?

    You say the bumper comes off easily, we talking screws only? Also are the headlights held in place with a screw or something tucked in the wheel arch?

    In regards to the restoration, something like this; Halfords | Meguiar's One Step Headlight Restoration Kit or is there something better out there? Also does this mean I would not have to remove the headlight to restore them and simply mask of the surrounding area?

  15. #14
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    I used that kit for the headlights.

    from memory, torx screws hold the wheel arch liner on, and attach to bumper. three torx screws as top inside bumper to wing each side, and 2 10mm bolts under the bumper.

    Lights held in with 3 large torx, one of them youll need a long tool to get at from one of the holes on top of slam panel.
    '02 TDi 130 Sport: Mods to date: BXP 160 conversion, EGR delete, Decat, Helix SMF fast road clutch, 312mm front rotors, full DIS , CC, Xenons.
    VCDS fully registered and happy to help.
    *Need a Spare Key or Remote? SKC retrieval? Clock/ECU swap or milage correction? I am fully insured to work on your vehicle! Offering a good deal and quality service to ASN members Nationwide!*

  16. #15
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    Hey guys just wanted to let you know bumper doesnt need to come off, i have a a3 1.8 turbo 2001 and managed to change my headlights without removing the wheels or bumper. I know taking off the bumper just makes it easier to swap them out but just wanted to let you know it can be done without removing bumper and wheels.

  17. #16
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    I've had a car failed on 'excessively corroded brake pipes' I asked the tester to put the car on the ramps to show me the culprit, when he showed me, I reached up and gave them a rub and what he deemed as corroded was infact just road dirt/mud that had gathered around the pipes over time, also failed on a wheel bearing, I made him aware that the wheel bearing was replaced by his garage around 3 weeks prior to the mot, after a little red faced banter his 'boss' apologised, and retested my car which passed, mot'd are soley down to the discretion of the tester carrying out the test, you could take it to another garage and they could find the lights to be passable but could fail the car on bushes or something else that the previous tester said was fine, mot's are abit of a gamble, don't go for cheap £25 mots, and try to research garages befor you use them, as for your parts try and source them second hand, be miles cheaper,

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    Right I've bought two new headlights it seemed to be the best option in the end hopefully get them fitted tomorrow.

    I've also had a quick go and getting to the rear high-level brake light and can't seem to get to it because of trim which surrounds it, any tips on how to take it off?

    Also does anyone know the law in regards to having your MOT expire, can you still drive to a garage to undertake work?

  19. #18
    epox's Avatar
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    you can only drive it to the mot station if its booked in for the work / mot to be done.

  20. #19
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    Yep it can be driven to a place of work or to a mot test, both must be booked in. Can also be driven home. no stopping for fuel in between!
    '02 TDi 130 Sport: Mods to date: BXP 160 conversion, EGR delete, Decat, Helix SMF fast road clutch, 312mm front rotors, full DIS , CC, Xenons.
    VCDS fully registered and happy to help.
    *Need a Spare Key or Remote? SKC retrieval? Clock/ECU swap or milage correction? I am fully insured to work on your vehicle! Offering a good deal and quality service to ASN members Nationwide!*

  21. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by epox View Post
    you can only drive it to the mot station if its booked in for the work / mot to be done.
    Quote Originally Posted by @udi A3 View Post
    Yep it can be driven to a place of work or to a mot test, both must be booked in. Can also be driven home. no stopping for fuel in between!
    Thanks for the info guys.

    So has anyone got any tips for the rear high level brake light surround? I'm going to attempt to remove the trim again fairly soon & don't want to waste my time or break it if there is a simple way to remove it.

    Why do Audi make things such a pain in the arse? I went through one of the official manual's I came across on here and it made me laugh when I cam to the removing headlight section, first step, 'Remove Bumper' really?


    EDIT: Not to worry break light all sorted now. For anyone interested the trim is in two parts, undo the two screws next to the handle thing and simple tug at the trim it's held in with fairly tough clips I used a phillips screwdriver to prize it open in places but got there in the end.
    Last edited by Adam F; 19th October 2013 at 12:43.

 

 

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