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Thread: New 8L S3 owner, lots of questions and help required!

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    New 8L S3 owner, lots of questions and help required!

    Hi all!

    We have gone from looking for an A4 Quattro for my OH to use this winter to finding and buying an S3! That wasn't part of the plan, but there you go! My daily driver is a BMW E60 535d. Getting out of that and into this S3 is like getting into a go kart! I'm really enjoying the crazy little car though.

    It's a 1999 V reg, which someone at some point has tried to facelift. Unfortunately, we paid absolute bottom money for this car, and so expected issues. And it's got them. In spades.

    So that's where I need your help. I want to get this car back to its best. My Mrs loves it already so we HAVE to show it some love!

    It's an Ebony Pearl, LZ9W paint colour. The bonnet needs replacing or spraying. The wings don't seem to sit right where the facelift headlights are fitted and the doors also look like they want replacing, so it will be like Trigger's broom in the end!

    So.... where do I start? Let's start with the facelift headlights. There's no back covers on them. They look to me like they have had an aftermarket Xenon kit fitted. You can't even clip the bulbs into the lights as the clips don't actually clip on. Can't tell if that bit of the lights has also been butchered or not. Can I get OEM Xenon wiring looms to replace this aftermarket crap, or is it back to halogen or bust?

    Couple of pics:

    20131208_125455.jpg

    20131208_125542.jpg

    20131208_125517.jpg

    20131208_125531.jpg

    Then there's the bit where the lights don't fit properly into the corners of the wings. Is this because these are not the right wings and lights combo, or something else?

    20131208_125342.jpg

    20131208_125356.jpg

    20131208_125408.jpg

    Soo..... new front wings needed?

    Then we have the engine. Oh god......

    There's basically some stuff been done to the engine which I want to reverse. Here are the pics:

    20131208_125437.jpg

    20131208_125603.jpg

    20131208_125625.jpg

    20131208_125709.jpg

    I will remove the cone filter and put the standard airbox back on as soon as I can. In one of the engine pics, I have circled what I believe to be the EGR. Is this correct? If so, what should the vac hose coming from it connect to, as it's just sat in there with nothing on the other end of it right now.

    There's also something sat on the engine in the 2nd engine pic, which I did a bit of research on and found was called a change over valve? What does it do/where does it go? I don't want it sat loose on top of the engine!

    The red vac hoses, I don't know if there is anything right or wrong with them. If anyone can see any issues with them, please please point them out. Not sure why there is a blanked off T-Piece in there.

    The car makes a very pronounced dump valve sound, but looks to my eye to have a standard recirc valve on it, which is really strange?

    So there we have it. Apologies for the long post. This is a major work in progress and I'd like to get it sorted. Outside of these issues, we have a dead key which I can't bloody separate to put a new battery in, and the car's battery is being drained by something which I haven't yet traced, so goes flat Oh and the temp gauge doesn't work. New sensor from ECP tomorrow I think.

    We'll get there in the end!

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  3. #2
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    Oh and also, the PAS is heavy as hell and the brakes need bleeding!

    I saw here:
    Brake Question

    that the master cylinder should also be bled. Do you need VAG-COM/VCDS for this at all or is that jut to initiate the ABS bleeding? Where is the master cylinder on this car and how do you actually bleed it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Sir Culation View Post
    Then there's the bit where the lights don't fit properly into the corners of the wings. Is this because these are not the right wings and lights combo, or something else?

    20131208_125342.jpg

    20131208_125356.jpg

    20131208_125408.jpg
    They dont fit well because somebody didnt cut enaugh metal from wings. Take those lights of and cut little more i am sure after that they will fit perfect.








    fit perfect by me
    Alex C likes this.

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    welcome, and not sure were you're based but if you wanna remove the airfilter i have a spare oem airbox ?

    cant really help on the rest but some very knowledgeable guys on here

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigray View Post
    welcome, and not sure were you're based but if you wanna remove the airfilter i have a spare oem airbox ?

    cant really help on the rest but some very knowledgeable guys on here
    Actually in Leeds! Whereabouts in Leeds are you?

    We actually have the standard airbox in the boot currently but I'm quite sure the screws aren't with it. If you've got the screws/bolts spare to refit the box then I'd love to take those off your hands. Could just take the lot if it's easier

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    Right. Bit on top of the engine with the wires going to it that isn't plumbed in; this is your N249 valve. Basically it used to be plumbed in between the inlet manifold and the top of the oem diverter valve that you still have fitted. It is used so that the ECU can dump boost when it wants to - for instance if it feels loss of traction. Instead you now have a single red line from the inlet mani to the top of the diverter valve which is fine..... BUT, the N249 valve, although now not doing anything, needs to still be plugged in as it is otherwise the ECU doesn't like it. Either hide it out of the way (behind some heat shield) or some people put a resistor in it's place. Up to you, but it doesn't look like it will cause any harm.

    Pronounced dump noise is just because you are using a cone filter which you can hear much more easily. Going back to oem airbox is fine, particularly as the filter on there at the moment looks small and probably isn't doing much to help you. Best performance comes from a new and less restrictive inlet pipe and larger cone filter (google Badger 5).

    Other than that it's difficult to comment without other photos.
    2001 AMK S3 in Goodwood Green

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Sir Culation View Post
    Actually in Leeds! Whereabouts in Leeds are you?

    We actually have the standard airbox in the boot currently but I'm quite sure the screws aren't with it. If you've got the screws/bolts spare to refit the box then I'd love to take those off your hands. Could just take the lot if it's easier
    im on the out skirts of the city centre, and ill look at the airbox to see what screws they are and see if i have any in my tub of spares,
    where abouts are you based ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dancuz View Post
    Right. Bit on top of the engine with the wires going to it that isn't plumbed in; this is your N249 valve. Basically it used to be plumbed in between the inlet manifold and the top of the oem diverter valve that you still have fitted. It is used so that the ECU can dump boost when it wants to - for instance if it feels loss of traction. Instead you now have a single red line from the inlet mani to the top of the diverter valve which is fine..... BUT, the N249 valve, although now not doing anything, needs to still be plugged in as it is otherwise the ECU doesn't like it. Either hide it out of the way (behind some heat shield) or some people put a resistor in it's place. Up to you, but it doesn't look like it will cause any harm.

    Pronounced dump noise is just because you are using a cone filter which you can hear much more easily. Going back to oem airbox is fine, particularly as the filter on there at the moment looks small and probably isn't doing much to help you. Best performance comes from a new and less restrictive inlet pipe and larger cone filter (google Badger 5).

    Other than that it's difficult to comment without other photos.
    That's great, cheers! Is there any benefit/disadvantage to the N249 valve no longer being used? Would it be better plumbed back in?

    Interesting re: the filter. Most cars work better with a standard airbox and decent panel filter. Is that not the case with these?

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigray View Post
    im on the out skirts of the city centre, and ill look at the airbox to see what screws they are and see if i have any in my tub of spares,
    where abouts are you based ?
    Near Garforth

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    BTW, where on earth should the vac hose go from the EGR valve? It's just disconnected currently, with no plug in the line or anything.

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    Welcome to the 8L part of the forum...

    Brings back memories this does from when I picked up my noggy from Leeds some many years ago and it too turned out to need a huge amount of little things that needed fixing!

    Doesn't seem as though there is anything huge to fix- just a lot of TLC.

    Have a word with Trups (link below) who will give you the best advice on what to do with your lights, and message a few people who are breaking cars to try and get those back covers for the headlights to keep any water/moisture out.

    EM Tuning

    Bumper off job will be required to make things a lot more easier to fit and then you could sort the wings out as Samurai has suggested above.

    Chris
    2000 S3 APY

    18" BBS RSII with Michelin PS3s, 20mm H&R adapters, Relentless 3" DP and Sports cat, B5 V1 induction kit, cone filter+heat shield, Forge 007P, Awesome GTI SMF, AP coilovers, Facelift rear lights, Full Powerflex poly bush kit, R32 Rear ARB, SAI delete, N249 by-pass, Upgraded Engine mounts with Polytek, Stage 1 CC at Badger 5.

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    The secondary air valve should be plumbed in under your inlet manifold mate.
    Driving the most secretive S3 on ASN

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwistof View Post
    Welcome to the 8L part of the forum...

    Brings back memories this does from when I picked up my noggy from Leeds some many years ago and it too turned out to need a huge amount of little things that needed fixing!

    Doesn't seem as though there is anything huge to fix- just a lot of TLC.

    Have a word with Trups (link below) who will give you the best advice on what to do with your lights, and message a few people who are breaking cars to try and get those back covers for the headlights to keep any water/moisture out.

    EM Tuning

    Bumper off job will be required to make things a lot more easier to fit and then you could sort the wings out as Samurai has suggested above.

    Chris
    Cheers! I'm very confused with the lights. The clips to clip the bulbs in don't fasten on a couple of them. I may find it easier to get complete units if these won't fasten due to damage. Having the right bulbs etc. would help though.

    Why would someone fit an aftermarket Xenon kit to a car that already has Xenons?!? I saw a facelift headlight adapter cable on eBay. Couldn't he have just used those? If so, I will try and find the OEM loom for this car.

    BTW, we live in Leeds and got the car from Kent! Exact opposite to you by the looks of things :D

    Quote Originally Posted by Dani_B19 View Post
    The secondary air valve should be plumbed in under your inlet manifold mate.
    The EGR vac hose? Does that go to the nipple that's in front of the one that the DV hose goes to?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Sir Culation View Post
    Cheers! I'm very confused with the lights. The clips to clip the bulbs in don't fasten on a couple of them. I may find it easier to get complete units if these won't fasten due to damage. Having the right bulbs etc. would help though.

    Why would someone fit an aftermarket Xenon kit to a car that already has Xenons?!? I saw a facelift headlight adapter cable on eBay. Couldn't he have just used those? If so, I will try and find the OEM loom for this car.

    BTW, we live in Leeds and got the car from Kent! Exact opposite to you by the looks of things :D
    Don't worry, I was pretty confused on how it all worked and my xenon set up was OEM up until yesterday as I was having issues with the ballasts in the headlights. (situated under the headlight unit itself. )

    If the ballasts do go, then new OEM ballasts only come with a full Hella headlight unit purchase - which are about £4-500 each from TPS....so that option was thrown straight out the window pretty early on by me and I imagine the majority of other people follow the same route.

    Second hand electrical parts are also a bit of a no no in my book....so decided on trying out an after market kit from Trups- which would keep my D2S xenon fitment and also keep things as close to OEM as possible.

    From what I can see from the back, it looks as though yours doesn't even have D2S fitment bulbs as there isn't the correct black lead and red connector head for it to push in to so the previous owner may have even fitted an incorrect kit - but I'm no expert on this.

    Yep....Kent to Leeds is a long old drive....but I'm sure it will be all worth it once you get these little bits out the way
    2000 S3 APY

    18" BBS RSII with Michelin PS3s, 20mm H&R adapters, Relentless 3" DP and Sports cat, B5 V1 induction kit, cone filter+heat shield, Forge 007P, Awesome GTI SMF, AP coilovers, Facelift rear lights, Full Powerflex poly bush kit, R32 Rear ARB, SAI delete, N249 by-pass, Upgraded Engine mounts with Polytek, Stage 1 CC at Badger 5.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwistof View Post
    Don't worry, I was pretty confused on how it all worked and my xenon set up was OEM up until yesterday as I was having issues with the ballasts in the headlights. (situated under the headlight unit itself. )

    If the ballasts do go, then new OEM ballasts only come with a full Hella headlight unit purchase - which are about £4-500 each from TPS....so that option was thrown straight out the window pretty early on by me and I imagine the majority of other people follow the same route.

    Second hand electrical parts are also a bit of a no no in my book....so decided on trying out an after market kit from Trups- which would keep my D2S xenon fitment and also keep things as close to OEM as possible.

    From what I can see from the back, it looks as though yours doesn't even have D2S fitment bulbs as there isn't the correct black lead and red connector head for it to push in to so the previous owner may have even fitted an incorrect kit - but I'm no expert on this.

    Yep....Kent to Leeds is a long old drive....but I'm sure it will be all worth it once you get these little bits out the way
    Absolutely. The Mrs loves the car already and I must admit, it's nice to get out of the 5 Series and into a little fast go kart!

    So, I guess I should try to find an aftermarket kit with D2S fitment for this car?

    Otherwise, how can I see if the ballasts have gone? I guess I'd have to go to the trouble and expense of buying the correct OEM loom and wiring it all back up? I want this car to be right, not a mess of tangled wires, but it does sound like swapping out the current kit and getting the covers for the backs of the lights is the way to go in this case?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Sir Culation View Post
    Absolutely. The Mrs loves the car already and I must admit, it's nice to get out of the 5 Series and into a little fast go kart!

    So, I guess I should try to find an aftermarket kit with D2S fitment for this car?

    Otherwise, how can I see if the ballasts have gone? I guess I'd have to go to the trouble and expense of buying the correct OEM loom and wiring it all back up? I want this car to be right, not a mess of tangled wires, but it does sound like swapping out the current kit and getting the covers for the backs of the lights is the way to go in this case?
    Getting the Mrs onside is always a plus

    Well first steps would be to determine what you actually have in there I suppose...do they work correctly at present?

    What I meant by the ballasts is that the previous owner may have needed to change the OEM xenons to this kit due to the ballasts going in the first place.

    New ballasts may be required for you to fit D2S bulbs again....I'm getting way out my depth though - so I'd advise you to take some more pictures and contact Trups from the link I posted above fella. He sorted me out with everything I needed for a very good price and delivery time was great also

    Definitely get on the search for some back covers though in the mean time - tidies things up a great deal.
    2000 S3 APY

    18" BBS RSII with Michelin PS3s, 20mm H&R adapters, Relentless 3" DP and Sports cat, B5 V1 induction kit, cone filter+heat shield, Forge 007P, Awesome GTI SMF, AP coilovers, Facelift rear lights, Full Powerflex poly bush kit, R32 Rear ARB, SAI delete, N249 by-pass, Upgraded Engine mounts with Polytek, Stage 1 CC at Badger 5.

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    Yeah I thought that may be the case re the old ballasts going. Would think just getting a kit meant for this car that runs D2S bulbs would help.

    The lights do "work", but we had the indicator stuck on at one point and one of the headlight bulbs is just hanging out of its socket due to it not being possible to fasten it in!

    I don't like that! :D

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    Oh yeah, just to add: if the vac pipe from the EGR should be going to the point under the inlet next to where the DV vac hose goes, then I'm even more bewildered! See my last pic in the first post? You will see a T-piece in the red hose with a black hose going to it. That black hose is plumbed into the nipple on the inlet that I now believe the EGR hose should go to.

    WTF?!!

  20. #19
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    not sure if its any help but feel free to look at my car if you're going back to standard. to see what goes where etc

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigray View Post
    not sure if its any help but feel free to look at my car if you're going back to standard. to see what goes where etc
    That would be great, actually! Just trying to figure some stuff out as we speak. It's not easy....

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    just let us know bud. and ill pop up

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigray View Post
    just let us know bud. and ill pop up
    Nice one, really appreciate it. I'll give you a shout one night this week if I'm stuck

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    Ohhhh boy......

    20131209_223309.jpg

    20131209_223322.jpg

    20131209_223401.jpg

    So shocks are ****ed. This was something I planned to replace but not yet. Due to it forcing itself on me, the only option right now looks like Koni STR.T's with H&R springs at £429 all in.

    As for the rear exhaust bracket..... anyone know the part number and whether I can refit one on there? It looks a bit like the old one was ripped out from that hole I can see.

    The joy.

    Sorry again for all the posts this week

  25. #24
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    Well, I had little choice due to the condition of the rear shocks, and have ordered a set of Koni STR.T's with H&R springs. I would have gone for Bilsteins normally, but in this case we didn't have the money to hand for these, let alone anything more costly. They seem to get pretty good reviews, so hopefully they will be decent on the car.

    I better get on and order some top mounts now I guess!

    I've been reading up and see that I should get LCR top mounts, rather than stock S3. It totally blows my mind that the struts are not bolted to the car at the top. I've never seen that before on any car I've owned! (Although I had a Leon Cupra years ago, but never noticed!)

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    So, I ordered LCR top mounts and bearings. I've also ordered the red Powerflex dogbone bush. Need to order the stretch bolts from Audi now.

    On the downside, I've just been told that my new Konis won't be in stock until January 24th!!! Yes, you read that right. I'm absolutely gutted.

    So in light of that, and the condition of the rear shocks, I've had to grab a used set off eBay for £100. They will have to tide us over I think.

  27. #26
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    Welcome to the 8L forum, and congratulations at getting your S3, pre-facelifts rule. For suspension you could do no better than a set of Bilstein B8's and Eibach springs, I have them on my 99 S3 and absolutely love them. As others have said a Badger 5 3 inch TIP makes a big difference, and a good remap will bring a huge grin to your face.

    Nige
    1999 Audi S3 Superchips remap, Forge 007p, Phatnoise, Black Diamond Discs & DS2500 pads, N249 Deleted, Badger 5 TIP, Poly dogbone bush, Bilstein B8's and Eibach Springs.

    1986 Audi Coupe Quattro 2.2 restoration project

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    Quote Originally Posted by sportquattro View Post
    Welcome to the 8L forum, and congratulations at getting your S3, pre-facelifts rule. For suspension you could do no better than a set of Bilstein B8's and Eibach springs, I have them on my 99 S3 and absolutely love them. As others have said a Badger 5 3 inch TIP makes a big difference, and a good remap will bring a huge grin to your face.

    Nige
    Many thanks

    I had that exact suspension setup on my E46. Felt a bit soft but held the road very well.

    I've already developed a huge soft spot for this little S3. Once I fix it up it will be a great little car.

    Unfortunately I was told yesterday that the Konis won't be in stock until January 24, so I've had to grab a set of used shocks from eBay to tide us over. Not best pleased really, but it is what it is.

  29. #28
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    New 8L S3 owner, lots of questions and help required!

    Quote Originally Posted by kwistof View Post
    Getting the Mrs onside is always a plus

    Well first steps would be to determine what you actually have in there I suppose...do they work correctly at present?

    What I meant by the ballasts is that the previous owner may have needed to change the OEM xenons to this kit due to the ballasts going in the first place.

    New ballasts may be required for you to fit D2S bulbs again....I'm getting way out my depth though - so I'd advise you to take some more pictures and contact Trups from the link I posted above fella. He sorted me out with everything I needed for a very good price and delivery time was great also

    Definitely get on the search for some back covers though in the mean time - tidies things up a great deal.
    If you have an alternative xenon ballast and bulbs that work then I wouldn't bother changing because it will get expensive. Although most cars will use D2S fitment it's not a necessity. If you find that the S3 light projection is poor compared to your 535 it's probably not due to the ballasts you're running but rather because of one or more common problems with S3 xenons. 1) does your auto levelling actually work? Most peoples lights point downwards because of a broken clip/sensors not working (see lorryz build thread) and 2) the projector on the S3 is not at all modern (it's over a decade old and very primitive.

    I'm considering rebuilding the headlight unit with Morimoto projectors but keeping the original ballasts to help improve lighting for this reason. My honest opinion is that if you changed the ballasts to get back to oem it will make little difference as you will still have the same wiring etc hope this helps. Also Trups is definitely the man to talk to regarding lighting issues.

    EDIT: I would suggest keeping the N249 delete, when you get hooked on the S3 and want more power and trade the 535 with your missus (give it a couple of months) you will start upgrading things and an N249 delete is one recommended mod for handling (no expert however)

  30. #29
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    Just for reference, the S3 engine doesn't have EGR. What looks like the EGR valve is the combi valve for the Sencondary Air Injection (SAI) system.

    This is an emissions control device on cold start - it pumps air down to the cats to make them more efficient, more quickly. It's a piece of plop basically. Sounds like a dyson running on cold start...
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    Last Post: 14th September 2011, 12:54
  5. New to the forums - lots of questions.
    By Paul-A3 in forum A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 6th June 2007, 10:58

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