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Thread: S4 - Timing chain................snapped

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    nickb834's Avatar
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    S4 - Timing chain................snapped

    So - it's finally happened, after 111k miles and 3 and a half years - the timing chains have snapped on my S4........

    No idea of the internal damage so dunno if valves have smashed holes in pistons or whether pistons have bent valves or even all of the above, but, having prepared for this eventuality it's not come as a great shock.

    Things may have moved on a bit in the last few years so before I break it for parts it's worth checking, does anyone know of any reasonably priced repair options?

    For eg - any 2nd hand engines kicking about known to be good (I doubt it - as it's usually the engine that kills an S4 off - or a tree!) OR perhaps any Audi tuners offering a recon engine fitting service?

    In all probability I'll break the car (RNS-E and DVB Tuner have already gone) the front wings are gone (rusted from inside out on arch lip) and one of the doors has started to go - but, there's this lot to go as a starters:


    • full recaro leather, electric adjustable, front heated, carbon trimmed interior up for grabs.
    • Interior dimming mirror
    • Dimming wing mirrors
    • Front and rear bumpers (paint code LZ9W - Rear has parking sensors fitted - non Audi by previous owners)
    • HID Headlamps
    • Front fogs and trims
    • Auxilliary rad (OSF - barely 12 months old) - NSF has corrosion so not worth fitting
    • 2 x Delphi alternators (1 as a spare, 1 was fitted to car 12 months ago)
    • 5 x wheels (need a refurb - which I might get done) with 4 x Michelin Pilot Sport 3's (1 worn on shoulder, other 3 about 4mm's tread left) and a Toyo Proxes T1R as spare
    • 8 x coil packs - only 20k miles on these


    When / If I decide to break this car I'll put it in the for sale section....

    Cheers

    Nick
    Last edited by nickb834; 1 Week Ago at 09:53.

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    S3 GAZ's Avatar
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    Maybe a daft question but if we're preparing for this day why did you not get the chains replaced before this happened?

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    Quote Originally Posted by S3 GAZ View Post
    Maybe a daft question but if we're preparing for this day why did you not get the chains replaced before this happened?
    Have you seen the cost?! It's an engine out job, whilst the engine is out you may as well do the clutch and dmf. Be lucky to see change from 4 grand - on a car that's not worth much above £5k!

    The timing chains on an S4 are at the back of the engine and absolutely cannot be got at with the engine in situ, IIRC the kit of parts is well over £1500 - never mind the labour! For eg have a look at JHM's kits for this JHM Timing Chain Service Kit for B6-B7 S4 - INTERMEDIATE - JH Motorsports Inc. - -- JHM. Shifting

    Most garages won't touch these cars - try getting a clutch done for eg at a local independant and they won't touch em so you're in specialist territory or main dealer hell!

    And, most importantly of all - now I can justify using man maths a B7 RS4 :-P

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    Onwards and upwards mate. RS4 luvvly.

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    Oh well didn't appreciate the cost if doing the chains.

    Please don't let the rs4 suffer the same fate or have u factored in the maintenance cost of such a beast

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    cost of doing chains on an s4 is expensive
    all the more reason to protect against this and fit the pre oiler to stop the chain rattling on start up and breaking the chain guides
    which in turn snaps the chain
    2003 pearlescent black s4 avant tiptronic - milltek exhaust - pre cats removed - remapped ...
    koni adjustable suspension front and rear
    alpine f1 dvi9990 -pxah990 headunit and processor - alpine d511r
    4 x focal 5ws midbass drivers - focal audiom 6w midrange - focal tce tweeters - velodyne df 12 sc servo controlled subwoofer
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    Hi whats the life of a S4 chain and how big a job is the chain pre oiler.

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    Quote Originally Posted by THQuattro View Post
    Hi whats the life of a S4 chain and how big a job is the chain pre oiler.
    Yeah when do audi recommend the timing chains are replaced?

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    Sorry to hear

    Out of interest did you have longer than usual chain rattle on start up and frequency?

    What service regime was it on and type of oil used?

    Any tell tell signs it may have been coming?
    Researching and potentially looking for a nice S4 B6
    Previous cars: Modded Toyota Celica 1.8 Vvtli, modded mk1 TT, standard mkv r32 dsg
    Current: family wagon diesel

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    audi reccomend changing the chain and gears at 300,000 miles

    the pre oiler system time to fit is a little dependant on what size you fit it and where
    im in the middle of doing a write up with pictures of how mines has been done
    Av4nt likes this.
    2003 pearlescent black s4 avant tiptronic - milltek exhaust - pre cats removed - remapped ...
    koni adjustable suspension front and rear
    alpine f1 dvi9990 -pxah990 headunit and processor - alpine d511r
    4 x focal 5ws midbass drivers - focal audiom 6w midrange - focal tce tweeters - velodyne df 12 sc servo controlled subwoofer
    3 x phoenix gold zpa 0.5 amplifiers

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    So 111k is a third of expected life, not good.

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    I'd be in tears!
    Atlas Grey A4 2.5 TDI Quattro Sport.
    Mods so far: Cruise control, DIS, Heated Mirrors, Tuning box, Xenonx, Centre Arm Rest, MFSW, RNS-E, SDS and Aero Wipers.
    To do: None yet.
    Next: Auto dip rearview mirror and Folding Mirrors.

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    there are some in the states with a little over 60k on them when they have gone
    a couple have been done by audi as goodwill gestures but clearly the parts where not well designed as against the rest of the engine
    the best way to protect against it now is the pre oiler system , there have been no reported failures since anyone fitting the system has had one fitted
    2003 pearlescent black s4 avant tiptronic - milltek exhaust - pre cats removed - remapped ...
    koni adjustable suspension front and rear
    alpine f1 dvi9990 -pxah990 headunit and processor - alpine d511r
    4 x focal 5ws midbass drivers - focal audiom 6w midrange - focal tce tweeters - velodyne df 12 sc servo controlled subwoofer
    3 x phoenix gold zpa 0.5 amplifiers

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    Quote Originally Posted by dualmono21 View Post
    there are some in the states with a little over 60k on them when they have gone
    a couple have been done by audi as goodwill gestures but clearly the parts where not well designed as against the rest of the engine
    the best way to protect against it now is the pre oiler system , there have been no reported failures since anyone fitting the system has had one fitted
    Who does these pre oiler systems.

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    there are a few companies who make pre oiler systems
    they are mainly fitted on very high performance engines or old classic cars which are again usually raced or rallied

    moroso , accusump , amsoil , oilamatic to name but a few who make systems
    2003 pearlescent black s4 avant tiptronic - milltek exhaust - pre cats removed - remapped ...
    koni adjustable suspension front and rear
    alpine f1 dvi9990 -pxah990 headunit and processor - alpine d511r
    4 x focal 5ws midbass drivers - focal audiom 6w midrange - focal tce tweeters - velodyne df 12 sc servo controlled subwoofer
    3 x phoenix gold zpa 0.5 amplifiers

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    Quote Originally Posted by p1tse View Post
    Sorry to hear

    Out of interest did you have longer than usual chain rattle on start up and frequency?

    What service regime was it on and type of oil used?

    Any tell tell signs it may have been coming?
    Chain rattled for just less than a second on startup - did it every morning but once it had started for the day it didn't do it again.

    The engine was running Fuchs Titan Race Pro S 5w40, and the oil was changed circa every 8k miles which is about 12 months for me.

    There was absolutely nothing warning me that this was coming - what I would say is, it let go when it was in the process of getting thrashed - but then what's the point of pootling a 300+ hp v8 :-P
    Last edited by nickb834; 6 Days Ago at 16:01.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dualmono21 View Post
    there are a few companies who make pre oiler systems
    they are mainly fitted on very high performance engines or old classic cars which are again usually raced or rallied

    moroso , accusump , amsoil , oilamatic to name but a few who make systems
    I've though of fitting one a few times - should, woulda, coulda! I'd be intrigued to know if the RS4 (B7) suffers the same with it's chains - I've not looked tbh as I'm a few months off having the necessary wedge to find my own.

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    Quote Originally Posted by S3 GAZ View Post
    Oh well didn't appreciate the cost if doing the chains.

    Please don't let the rs4 suffer the same fate or have u factored in the maintenance cost of such a beast
    Yeah it's an easy call with an RS4 - leggy ones are still fetching 14k, mint lower miles are circa 20k - it's a no brainer to do 3k worth of maintenance on a 20k car - but, it's equally a no brainer not to bother on a 5k car.

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    S3 GAZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickb834 View Post
    Yeah it's an easy call with an RS4 - leggy ones are still fetching 14k, mint lower miles are circa 20k - it's a no brainer to do 3k worth of maintenance on a 20k car - but, it's equally a no brainer not to bother on a 5k car.
    suppose when u put it like that

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    Quote Originally Posted by nickb834 View Post
    Chain rattled for just less than a second on startup - did it every morning but once it had started for the day it didn't do it again.

    The engine was running Fuchs Titan Race Pro S 5w40, and the oil was changed circa every 8k miles which is about 12 months for me.

    There was absolutely nothing warning me that this was coming - what I would say is, it let go when it was in the process of getting thrashed - but then what's the point of pootling a 300+ hp v8 :-P
    How long have you owned and mileage covered
    Sounds like you looks after it

    As it sounds like you had decent oil, would normal usage cause chain guide wear or is it really just at start up ?
    Sounds like audi need to sort something out
    Researching and potentially looking for a nice S4 B6
    Previous cars: Modded Toyota Celica 1.8 Vvtli, modded mk1 TT, standard mkv r32 dsg
    Current: family wagon diesel

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    Quote Originally Posted by p1tse View Post
    How long have you owned and mileage covered
    Sounds like you looks after it

    As it sounds like you had decent oil, would normal usage cause chain guide wear or is it really just at start up ?
    Sounds like audi need to sort something out
    I'd had the car 3 1/2 years and done about 30k miles in it, it's very well documented the chain tensioners going on B6/7 S4's.

    The noise at startup doesn't cause the wear, the wear causes the noise at startup. The chain guides go, then the tensioners and then boom snappage! The time this takes to happen is a function of quality of oil and frequency of changes and usage and pi55 poor design in the first place.

    What I would say is - if you ever consider buying a car that's been on long life service schedule then walk away - there's no way in hell no matter how good an oil is that you can go 20k between services. For eg - this S4 of mine was switched by me from time and distance intervals to variable based on driving. The car looked at the various parameters such as fuel consumption vs load and so on and told me roughly every 8k miles that it wanted a service - can you imagine doing 12k miles beyond that on a time and distance schedule on some VAG group Quantum 504 oil? shudder!

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    I'm a recent new owner

    66k and has been on long life, like a lot of the other ones out there

    First week of ownership I took it off variable to what I will do as annual
    And running on Fuchs Titan pro too
    Researching and potentially looking for a nice S4 B6
    Previous cars: Modded Toyota Celica 1.8 Vvtli, modded mk1 TT, standard mkv r32 dsg
    Current: family wagon diesel

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    the noise at start up is caused by the thinning oil leaking from the hydraulic tensioners (some manufacturers new ones are fitted with a one way valve so this cannot happen )
    the one second rattle on start up .... causes the chain to slap the plastic wear guides and wear them thin in particular spots
    when the chain guides eventually fail ..... this causes the chains to go slack and the tensioners to work even harder to try to take up slack and eventually the tensioner snaps

    good oil definitely helps and shorter service intervals
    or if you want to take it out of the equation fit a pre oiler system to pump up the tensioners before you start the engine
    this gets rid of the chain slap ... which doesn't wear your guides , which doesn't overexert your tensioners
    2003 pearlescent black s4 avant tiptronic - milltek exhaust - pre cats removed - remapped ...
    koni adjustable suspension front and rear
    alpine f1 dvi9990 -pxah990 headunit and processor - alpine d511r
    4 x focal 5ws midbass drivers - focal audiom 6w midrange - focal tce tweeters - velodyne df 12 sc servo controlled subwoofer
    3 x phoenix gold zpa 0.5 amplifiers

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    I'm aware that there are some which have suffered from the cam chain issue resulting a wrote off

    Is it more common on b6 due to different guides?
    Researching and potentially looking for a nice S4 B6
    Previous cars: Modded Toyota Celica 1.8 Vvtli, modded mk1 TT, standard mkv r32 dsg
    Current: family wagon diesel

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    i think it is more common on the b6 but only because of age related wear not design function
    the guides on the b7 are slightly harder plastic but they still wear when a chain slaps them ...
    2003 pearlescent black s4 avant tiptronic - milltek exhaust - pre cats removed - remapped ...
    koni adjustable suspension front and rear
    alpine f1 dvi9990 -pxah990 headunit and processor - alpine d511r
    4 x focal 5ws midbass drivers - focal audiom 6w midrange - focal tce tweeters - velodyne df 12 sc servo controlled subwoofer
    3 x phoenix gold zpa 0.5 amplifiers

  27. #26
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    How about the older s6, a8
    Researching and potentially looking for a nice S4 B6
    Previous cars: Modded Toyota Celica 1.8 Vvtli, modded mk1 TT, standard mkv r32 dsg
    Current: family wagon diesel

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    not the same engines as some of the old s6 and a8 engines are cam belt not chain
    the bbk engine in the s4 is unique it was purpose designed to be shorter than the old a8 engine to fit in the engine bay of the b6 chassis
    2003 pearlescent black s4 avant tiptronic - milltek exhaust - pre cats removed - remapped ...
    koni adjustable suspension front and rear
    alpine f1 dvi9990 -pxah990 headunit and processor - alpine d511r
    4 x focal 5ws midbass drivers - focal audiom 6w midrange - focal tce tweeters - velodyne df 12 sc servo controlled subwoofer
    3 x phoenix gold zpa 0.5 amplifiers

 

 

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